It’s been 1 year since the release of Reverie and not too much longer since I’ve embarked on this whole singer-songwriter, performance/recording artist thing… (say RED BULB BLUE BULB 5x fast!)
With the new album due out in August (just over a year post Reverie), I thought I’d celebrate this occasion by saying thank you in some official capacity but also sharing with you what motivates me to keep on keeping on when it would be much easier to slow things down.
One reason may be apparent. I love what I’m doing. It’s scary. It makes me feel way too vulnerable. I get nervous. I can’t sleep sometimes… But I love it. In fact, I love it more and more as time goes on so yes, this is a motivating factor.
With a busy school schedule though, there often needs to be more motivation. And thanks to you there is. Consider the picture below and meet @JBonomo – an awesomely awesome guy from Indiana who is officially one of my favourite people. We ‘met’ on twitter. He heard the music and liked it. I read his tweets and liked him. A connection was born. This isn’t just someone I call a ‘fan’ or a ‘listener’. It’s someone who, despite our knowing each other in any physical sense, has brought tremendous joy to my life.
Par example: When I FINALLY changed my profile picture (after a year) he responded by going on an elaborate road trip/adventure with his best friend and mom in order to most accurately mimic/mock my new look. Ummm… HILARIOUS! This is really something you’d expect a friend to do, which in the conventional sense means someone you’ve met and hung out with etc. But for me, since embarking on this musical journey, I’ve had the privilege to make friends all over the place. And they are real friends. People who inspire me. Who go out of their way to make me laugh. Who support my musical ambitions by sharing my tunes with their friends, parents, children whoever… Real people that have, in many circumstance, given me micro moments of joy exactly when I needed them. So damn you twitter haters… Real connections can be born!
This is one example of many… people who come to almost every show, take pictures/videos and go out of their way to send them to me, send me their personal stories in case I’m inspired to put them to song… you know who you are! The.List.Goes.On. So why am I putting in 10 hour days in the studio and attempting to balance a life in music and medicine? It’s safe to say that you, yes YOU (by virtue of even reading this!), are high on the hypothetical list of reasons.
So Happy Birthday Reverie. And thank you for connecting me with such beautiful listeners/fans/friends. Although the upcoming album may be shiny and new, you will always hold a very special place in my heart.
“And he knew that shepherds, like seamen and like traveling salesmen, always found a town where there was someone who could make them forget the joys of carefree wandering.”—Paulo Coelho (The Alchemist)
‘Tis the season to love and be loved so I just wanted to send one last email of 2009 to do just that. Show you some love, thank you for your incredible support, wish you a happy holiday season, and share some exciting news. Here I go…
It was only 6 months ago (July ’09!) that over 100 of you decided to spend an evening with me as I sucked up my fears and got on stage for my CD Release Party in Toronto. A shot of whisky, two bare feet, and a stomach full of butterflies made me realize many things that night. Two of which stand out:
1) This performing thing is terrifying… but it feels damn good.
2) What a special group of people I have in front of me.
Many things have developed since then. Gigs, interviews, radio debuts, learning how to tweet… None of which would have happened without your amazing support. I mean it. Emails from friends, strangers, internet-pals etc. have made me realize that opening your heart and making yourself vulnerable is worth every minute when it gets people to listen and open their hearts right back. And that is what you have done. And that is why I’m so grateful.
As many of you know, I recently moved to Kingston where I started medical school. It’s been a fabulous and scary change. I’ve asked myself many questions: How will I balance the science-nerd in me with this new music thing I have going on? What will my peers/professors think of this? When will I sleep? Have time to write music? Study? What am I going to wear for my next gig? When will I fall in love? Should I start wearing wrinkle cream?
Maybe some questions have been more trivial than others, but they’ve all made me realize that music has been with me through it all. Personally it’s complimented every academic endeavour, every personal struggle, and many wonderful moments. It satisfies me in ways surprisingly similar to medicine and allows me to reach out - all the while reaching in.
So when you ask (and many have): If you get famous will you quit medschool?
My answer: who’s getting famous? and NO! As long as people continue to listen to my music I will continue to do both. So thank you to everyone who’s been to a show, listened to a song, told a friend about me, bought the CD, written an email etc. My guitar has always been there for me but YOU are the ones that make me put my songs out there. And for that, I am oh so thankful.
I wish you all a very happy Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Rohatsu, Yule…. and/or whatever else it is you may celebrate this time of year. I hope to see you sometime soon at a show or elsewhere.
Once again things have got a little out of hand but I’m glad to report a bit of sleep, a restful weekend and the soothing balm of good tunes has helped set me back on a better track…..here are some of the tunes that featured over this R & R weekend. hey, have you ever got this…there are songs that aren’t Xmas tunes but you like to hear at this time of year, or there are ones that give you that olde thyme’y Xmas feeling…? For me Bridge Over Trouble Water is one of those, what is yours?
The 50th Week of Year Commenceth Playlist
1. The Geese of Beverly Road – The National
2. Zat You Santa Clause – Louis Armstrong
3. Come Together – The Invisible
4. Goin’ Down Slow – Howlin’ Wolf
5. Hush Now- Fink
6. Blue Christmas – Elvis
7. Santa’s Second Line – New Birth Brass Band
8. Glory Hope Mountain – The Acorn
9. Tell Me Again – Ron Sexsmith
10. Heroes – David Bowie
11. Charlie Darwin – The Low Anthem
12. Radio Nowhere – Bruce Springstein
13. Happy Christmas – Toots & The Maytals
14. The Weight – The Band
15. I Wanna Spend Christmas With You – Lowell Fulsom
In the short time I’ve spent in the world of indie music I have learned a few important things about the keys to success. Namely, that it’s not about how many CDs you sell, underwear thrown on stage, body parts you’ve signed, fan mail you receive… it’s about email addresses and Facebook.
How else am I supposed to inform you about what’s hot and what’s not in my musical life? How else are you supposed to contact me when you meet the musical producer of your favourite TV show and they need some new folky beats for their soundtrack? (ahem… and you recommend me!)
It can be tough making a go of it in this biz when you’re an independent artist (and full-time student). I do not have a manager, PR, gig-booker… nor do I really want them at this point. I like the freedom of being in control of what I put out there. The only problem is that I am one person! Apparently this isn’t enough because CBC radio has not responded to any of my emails…This is where you come in. Help me spread the word! (word.)
As my single Christmas Without You nears completion, I have decided to start a campaign (and you are a part of it). I’m calling it:
HELP ANDREA GO VIRAL (but not in the H1N1 kind of way)
To join this movement all you have to do is follow a few easy steps:
Welcome to medical school - you are now a rock-star.
In a short amount of time one thing has become clear: as a future physician, you are a public figure. Like it or not, you are being watched and judged. So why is this so scary? The answer: social media.
As a 24 year old student, it should be no surprise that I am a regular (if not frequent) user of social media. My online presence extends beyond a few personal contacts on Skype and Facebook, however. I am also a singer-songwriter. Like most indie musicians, I have made my move with the music industry to the world of cyberspace. I blog and use Twitter to connect with friends and get my music heard. I’m on MySpace, ilike, YouTube, Tumblr, Sonicbids… the list goes on. To some respect, this makes me a pro in the area of social media. So what does this mean for my medical career? So far, the message is that I should be scared and extremely careful. One wrong picture (perhaps even lyric?) and my medical reputation could be shot. While I am not naive to the fact that the internet can be a scary and dangerous place, this topic always leaves me asking one thing: what do I have to hide?
I like to go dancing with my girlfriends. I drink alcohol. I party. I sing and play guitar. I tried smoking cigarettes when I was 16. Facebook. Facebook. Facebook. I’ve also been an A student my entire life. I like to travel and spend time with my family. I teach BodyFlow. I enjoy reading and I speak 3 languages. Woops - no one posted any of those things online. I guess this alludes to the big problem with social media. The fact is that one’s online presence is usually extremely polar; a mere glimpse of one’s social life and nothing else.
Like most medical students (I assume), one reason I trusted medicine to be THE career choice for me was that I truly believe myself to be a “good person”. Simply put, I love people and I want to help them. It’s cliché but true. So what does a picture of me with a beer in hand have to do with it? Yes, I respect the role physicians, lawyers, teachers etc. play in society. I understand that a certain amount of social responsibility comes with certain careers. But to feel threatened that my CaRMS match will be affected by my Facebook profile seems ludicrous. I do not think a reputation of sainthood should be the goal in the medical profession. Few people relate to this. In my ideal world, “normal” everyday life experiences are what will allow me to better relate to future patients, in turn allowing them to relate to me. BOOM. The qualities of an open and honest patient-physician relationship are born. Or so I think…
There is so much to say here. I guess my point is that as a physician (and medical student), shouldn’t the most important thing be that you take your job seriously and keep your patient’s best interest in mind? Shouldn’t this be enough to satisfy your role as a “professional”? For years now my generation has been warned about social media. We’re bombarded with stories of people losing jobs or flunking interviews because of their online image. The whole thing is so hotly contested that it has left me paranoid. Maybe that’s a good thing. Maybe it’ll help me to be extra careful when posting anything online. It also saddens me though. I can be goofy. I sometimes like to go out without brushing my hair. I wear funky shoes. At the end of the day, I’d like to think that these things would not deter from my reputation as a professional. That they would add quality to me as a person, help me to become an expert in the human condition, and in sum: help me help others. I hope I am right.
it’s an idea. possibly a lame one. but we’ll give it a shot.
it’s an online party.
i’ve met some real tweet-hearts and thought it would be nice to designate some time for an official get-together with them. a soirée if you will.
the problem: we all live so far away.
the answer: we party online.
like many ‘first parties’ this could be a bust. but I say we give it a shot. if anything, we’ll get some time to tweet with our oldest and newest favourite tweeps. maybe we start a #partyhardwithyournamehere movement. maybe we don’t. at the end of the day, we feel connected to the world and the lovely people in it.
so here’s to our first cyberparty. *cheers!*
time to evolve some fun creative ways to make it hilarious.
i’m thinking twitpics, drinkpics, blipping fun, and good ol’ tweeting.