Calling the shots  

I really feel blessed in so many ways to essentially be my own boss when it comes to my music. I don't have anyone telling me how to do my craft, when to release, when to post things, etc. But to be honest, it's a bit overwhelming. Trying to stay afloat getting everything accomplished, and doing it in a coherent way that people can relate to is a challenge. 

At the end of the day, tho, I wouldn't have it any other way. I'm learning the backend of marketing, website editing, online ads, and so many more things that I never thought in my wildest dreams that I'd be able to do. [I used code on my website for the first time! You know those lovely little opt-in boxes? Those are code I added. 🤓]

I'm so excited to share my album with you in 10 days. This group of songs delves into the depths of my soul in a way that nothing ever has. I don't think I've ever been this transparent about my innermost feelings. And honestly, I thought I'd be more nervous about sharing it. But it's time. It's always my goal when I write to transmute the negative into something positive, or at least lighter. And I think that kind of energy is needed in every way right now. So I'm excited to share it with you very soon. If you dug the video and first single, there's much more to come! ✨

How to turn big ideas into reality 

 For me, the short answer to this question is that you don’t. You don’t manifest anything overnight. Even if you reach that point where you’re at the apex and going over a cliff, it may seem as though everything happened instantly and fell into place, but it’s almost always the result of many days and months and hours of preparation that goes under the radar. 

To be honest, I think this is what held me back for a long time. I’d have such big visions of what I wanted to achieve, and it seemed so far from where I was- it felt like there was no point in trying. It was too overwhelming. But the thing that does keep me going is finding the small nuggets of joy and forward motion and moving consistently towards that. 

When I was little, the first inkling I had that I wanted to do music was seeing a concert on PBS of Yanni performing at the Acropolis in Greece. I just had a feeling in my heart that I wanted to be able to create something big like that and share it with people. When you’re young, you don’t have a concept that things are too big or too hard or that you’re not qualified. You just know what you want and go towards it. Luckily, I feel like I never totally lost that, although I do hesitate and doubt myself way more than I should. But I’m trying to hold that big vision, still. Moving towards it every day and doing something that brings me closer to it. Sometimes it’s music related. Sometimes it’s simply doing something that is nourishing my soul to help me become the the kind of person who can receive it. Either way, it’s important to make it fun and achievable.

So for me this year, that looked like: writing what I was feeling, potentially creating songs and channeling all the big emotional stuff, recording and mixing, tweaking a little at a time, reaching out to people who seem to be on the same wavelength, and creating something. [see above picture!] Not holding too tightly to the reins is important. Let your vision guide you, but allow the path to be fluid. Allow surprises and synchronicities to bring you where you need to be. Magic will find you if you let it.✨

 

The hardest part of songwriting 

 

I guess for a lot of people, making music and writing songs can be difficult. I wouldn’t say I’m a prolific writer by any means, but I feel like when a song is supposed to come through, it does. 

I guess the hardest part for me is when I’m in a stagnant place emotionally or in my life somehow. Everything is connected. If I’m moving forward in my life and feel like I have things to be excited about, or even if I’m dealing with something difficult, this is the energy that goes into writing a song.

Early last year I had gone for many months without writing, but after joining an online songwriting group and doing some traveling, that got me rolling again! And this year has been so stressful. A really difficult year for me actually- but I find that if I can at least get something creative out of it, it adds some degree of value and meaning.

I take a really right-brained approach to songwriting, meaning that I let my logical brain take the backseat when I’m writing. I’ve found that in most of my best songs, music and lyrics come together. I don’t have to do much as far as arranging- I might switch the order or adjust the form later. But I go more off of the feeling of the song rather than having a pre-conceived expectation of what it should sound like. 

Usually I don’t even know what the instrumentation will be like until I start to record and track in Logic. I like this approach. It’s fun for me because I don’t know what will happen or what the end product will be. 

Maybe these traits are typical of a right-brained empath. Do you think you’re more right or left brained?

September 1, 2020 

Hello all! I just wanted to check in and say that I hope you’re all doing well. It can be hard to stick to any kind of a schedule these days with so many uncertainties. As a matter of fact, I want to start posting more regularly a) so that you can get to know me better 😁 and b) to get my own energy moving. I tend to live in my head a lot, and I have a lot of ideas that I don’t take action on, so I want to try to change that. Especially as my album gets closer to release, there's a lot to be excited about! 

People often ask me about the songwriting process and how often I write songs. There’s a lot I could say about this! I think the process is different for everyone, and some people swear by having a routine and allocating a certain amount of regular time for songwriting. However 😜 I tend to do better with a bit more freedom. This past year I’ve been processing a lot emotionally, and music was an outlet for me to transmute some of my negative energy into something more positive. I find that the less I try to control the songwriting process, the better it comes out. As a matter of fact, I had a cool song come through the other night around 3am. I couldn’t sleep, and I just thought to myself, what am I wanting to say or express right now? What does my higher self want me to know? And bam. Cool song. [For the record, sometimes when this happens, I look at the song the next day and it’s crap. But you have to at least be open to the possibility of awesomeness.] So if you have a creative outlet, whether it’s songwriting or something else, I hope that you’re able to channel your energy into it and allow it to serve you, and maybe serve others too. In my experience, more flexibility you allow yourself, the more space you give yourself to grow and expand beyond what you thought you could do! 💜☯✨ 

Talk soon! 

KL

 

August 6, 2020 

My single and video release is now only a few weeks away (mid August). And I’m feeling unusually calm about sharing it with everyone- I’m even looking forward to it! I think although I’ve always strived to write the most authentic and honest material that I could, this is another level. Knowing that I’ve been in the driver’s seat through every stage of this creation process and collaborating only with people that I felt a strong creative connection with, it feels like now extending this excitement to a wider audience is smooth and effortless. 

I think especially for me as an empath, for most of my life I had cut myself off from my true feelings, always seeking approval from others, without even realizing that that’s what I was doing. Over the years, as I’ve started to feel my feelings more, it has become easier to make decisions that were more in alignment with my own creative excitement. And not only is it more fun, it seems to be flowing much easier! 

I can feel my energy moving forward with these projects now instead of subconsciously pulling back, and it’s really exciting! 

Stay tuned for more announcements about the video release, my album release, and for more things to come in the remainder of 2020!

July 18, 2020 

This past week, I filmed the video for The Place Beyond! This is only the second professional video I’ve ever done, and this process of seeing my song come to life has been so enriching for me. Although I’ve been writing songs for over a decade, it’s just in the past year- especially in the past 6 months- that I feel like I’m really ready to show up and be present as the musician and artist and person I’ve always wanted to be. 

The abstract colors and stars and clouds in the video are images that speak to my soul. I’ve always felt like I was a little weird and out of the box, but I’m finally starting to see that the more I embrace that part of myself and don’t try to change it, the more it flows and takes on a life of its own. This is the first group of songs I’ve written where I can say that I genuinely don’t care what people think or how it is received. I got to a place emotionally where I was finally raw and real enough to let my guard down and just say what I had to say. No filters, no worrying about how it will look. 

And this video I feel perfectly captures the vague abstractness that I love. I feel like I am able to bring that down and ground it in myself and in reality. And it was so fun!! Somewhere on my way to becoming “a real musician,” I forgot that the primary goal of all fo this is to have fun. And that that in itself is meaning enough. Hopefully that shows. 

This is also the first album that I’ve produced and mixed by myself. I’ve always had a producer brain and have been involved with it to some degree, but in the past I doubted myself and just assumed that other people knew better than me- although I must say, I have learned a tremendous amount through taking classes and working with others. But it’s tricky to find that balance and know when you’re ready to really dive in and own it. 

As I’ve been fully present during this production process and absolutely loving it, I’ve found other artists and creatives to work with who also are passionate about what they do- reflecting my joy back to me. 

The amazing director of this video, Kira Bursky at All Around Artsy, shares a similar passion for the abstract- and this video would not have been possible without her. I feel like I’m finally starting to gather a team of people who share similar goals and love what they do, and that is making a huge difference for me. As artists, we tend to isolate ourselves and think that no one understands us. I felt that way for many, many years. But, as I’m starting to experience now, following my pure joy and passion without any expectation from others ironically connects me with others who are doing the same thing. So it all works.

Update June 2020 

The first video from my album will be for a song called “The Place Beyond.” This is actually the oldest song on the album- I wrote it around 2012. And it’s a little vague. A little magical. A little uneasy. Very much like these times. I didn’t write the song with a specific theme or message in mind, but I think it can apply to a lot of different things. 

For me, as a sensitive and an introvert, I’ve had resistance for a long time about being present and grounded and feeling my feelings. As current events have escalated, I’m seeing these feelings come up more and more. So I think wanting to escape is some of what this song is about. But even beyond that, I think what I’m really trying to get at is that there’s a greater perspective and a greater harmony available if we can tune into it. The chorus is “Sunsets on the Amazon, take me to the place beyond.” Somehow sunsets and sunrises- without any words or distinct shapes- always take us where we need to be. They bring us into a deeper part of ourselves that doesn’t need any of those external things. 

The next line “Marching where the mighty fall, in the jungles deep and tall,” for me, is an acknowledgement that we are in times that are scary and confusing enough to freak out even the bravest of people. And yet we keep going. Seeing what the next day holds. Sometimes living moment to moment or breath by breath. It’s all we can do. We never really could rely on the future, but now it’s unavoidable- the present moment is all there is. 

So that’s what this song is. An honest look into the vague uncertainties that have always made me uncomfortable. Maybe all it really needs is to be looked at.

The first video from my album will be for a song called “The Place Beyond.” This is actually the oldest song on the album- I wrote it around 2012. And it’s a little vague. A little magical. A little uneasy. Very much like these times. I didn’t write the song with a specific theme or message in mind, but I think it can apply to a lot of different things. 

For me, as a sensitive and an introvert, I’ve had resistance for a long time about being present and grounded and feeling my feelings. As current events have escalated, I’m seeing these feelings come up more and more. So I think wanting to escape is some of what this song is about. But even beyond that, I think what I’m really trying to get at is that there’s a greater perspective and a greater harmony available if we can tune into it. The chorus is “Sunsets on the Amazon, take me to the place beyond.” Somehow sunsets and sunrises- without any words or distinct shapes- always take us where we need to be. They bring us into a deeper part of ourselves that doesn’t need any of those external things. 

The next line “Marching where the mighty fall, in the jungles deep and tall,” for me, is an acknowledgement that we are in times that are scary and confusing enough to freak out even the bravest of people. And yet we keep going. Seeing what the next day holds. Sometimes living moment to moment or breath by breath. It’s all we can do. We never really could rely on the future, but now it’s unavoidable- the present moment is all there is.

So that’s what this song is. An honest look into the vague uncertainties that have always made me uncomfortable. Maybe all it really needs is to be looked at.