Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas Day - 2015

Today is Christmas day of '15, and it has been 7 months since I last blogged.  I figured today would be a great day to catch up :)

Wow, I am not even sure where to start. So why don't we just start with the fact that the front door you see above is a different front door from our last blog.

Yes, we moved.  We finally bought our dream home in our dream town and have been loving it.

And since today is Christmas...we have a couple of elves who were up at 6am ready to find out what Santa brought them...

The other little elf slept for a couple more hours, but then woke up...

We enjoyed having G&G Southworth here on Christmas Eve and here to open presents this morning, and then they took off to Oregon to see Grandma Lindsay.

Our lives have been incredibly busy these past few months because I released a new album, and I can honestly say it has been THE busiest I've ever been.  There have been many nights working until the early hours of the morning not because it was the only time I could get things done, but because even after working ALL day during the day I still had so much to get done I continued to work through the night.

And I don't want to bore you with all the details, because one might ask what could I possibly be THAT busy with when it comes to music?  And I can't even tell you everything now. It all seems like a blur.  But I know it had a lot to do with deadlines, writing music for a commercial where the producer was super picky, finishing transcriptions for live orchestra, working on video editing, promotions, writing, composing, editing, photo and artwork editing, etc.

But, it is finished at last.

Since today is Christmas, it is officially the last day I can technically mention my album until next Christmas season.  And while it seems weird to have just gone through an immense amount of labor to produce an album that I only got to promote for a short 6 weeks, it is also a huge relief to know that I have a break.

It is surreal to think it was just a little over a year ago when Will decided to quite Microsoft and help support me in my music career. Just him letting me do that and us working together has allowed me to blossom and flourish.  And it feels like for the first time ever that my music has a higher purpose other than satisfying my own desire to create music. I've started to see how it touches other peoples' lives for the better and that is the best reward ever.

Will and I also took a trip to Europe in August!  It was and 2 and 1/2 weeks long and SOOOO needed! We celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary while we were there, and had a really romantic time.

We started off in Sweden to visit our friends Glen and Sofia, and were there for 5 days. And then we went to Paris, France.  Then drove from Paris down to Monte Carlo, then on to Lake Como, and onto Venice.  Then to Milano, and then onto Switzerland for Will's 100 mile race that was in Chaminoux, France.

We finished the year with a concert tour. I played Carnegie Hall...

And also had concerts in Park City, UT, Salt Lake City, UT, Houston, TX, and Seattle, WA.

The big finish was two shows at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, which you can watch here:

We also produced two music videos to accompany my new album this year, and plan to do some more music videos next year.

Carol of the Bells:

 and "Alleluia"

Hopefully it won't take me as long to blog next time, but I can promise it won't be until next year ;)

Happy New Year!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I'm not exactly sure why we are so lucky lately, but for the past several days in a row, this guy has taken a bottle and allowed us to lay him down in his crib for both naps AND bedtime without any fussing.  AND he has slept 3 hours naps, and through the night.

SERIOUSLY WHO IS THIS BABY and where is our real one?

Monday, May 18, 2015

EPIC Day - Recording Session/Music Video Shoot

Last Saturday I recorded at Bastyr Cathedral in Seattle with the Ensign Symphonic Chorus, and it was quite an experience to remember.

I had been preparing for this day for months, as well as the choir.  They recorded 4 of my songs going on my upcoming Christmas album, one of which is an all new original song I've written called "Alleluia".

We spent half of the day recording, and the 2nd half filming for a music video for Alleluia.  Tel Stewart (formerly of The Piano Guys) came and shot the video for us. He did an amazing job and was really great to work with.

A week before the shoot, the helicopter drone that he was going to bring up from UT had crashed, and Will and I spent a lot of time trying to find a replacement in the Seattle area for him but to no avail.

The night before the big day, my production crew and I all went out to dinner and afterwards Will and Tel decided there was just already too much going into this to not try for a helicopter. They were needing a specific kind, and Will spent half the night on FB Inspire Drone groups trying to find a pilot. A few people replied saying that they would love to do it but they didn't feel comfortably flying indoors or with people around.

However, at the last minute Adam saved the day (and is actually deemed one of the best drone pilots in the NW). He drove all the way up from Portland Saturday morning and did the shots. And he did a really amazing job - so smooth and steady. They are the "money shots" for sure.  I'm very excited!!

I'm just going to upload the whole lot of random order.  Some of these were taken by Will, some were from other people's cameras and phones that were sent to me.

By the way, Bastyr is renowned as one of the best recording spaces in the world.  People come from all over to record choirs and orchestras here because of the amazing acoustics that it has.  You can hear a sample of my Alleluia song here.  This clip was taken straight from the tracks we recorded with no additional reverb or mastering added:

And finally....a few rough still frames from the video footage.

We are still trying to develop the storyline ideas for the rest of the video, but it will be done and ready for Christmas later this year. :) I'm so grateful for all of these opportunities and feel truly blessed.