End-of-Summer Update + Navigating Transition

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Hey everyone! I know, long time no blog (except for sheet music releases and Kickstarter stuff) - all summer, in fact!

If you’ve missed the style of writing from my usual blog posts, you can still hear from me every week in my newsletter that’s chock-full of supportive real talk about staying well while doing creative work. Sign up at the bottom of the page!

Now that we’re past the ceremonial beginning of fall, I thought I’d pop in to let you know what I’ve been up to.

If you follow me on social media, I know you couldn’t have missed the Kickstarter for my upcoming album Florescer.

(Spoiler: we did it! The project was funded, which I am SO grateful for - thanks very much to everyone who contributed!) I also did a really fun online concert to celebrate the last hour, which you can watch here:

If you did miss the Kickstarter, don’t worry, because the official album release date is coming up soon on October 24, and you’ll be able to buy and stream it through all of the usual places - stay tuned for more details on that.

And, if you’re in Minneapolis/St. Paul, you’re invited to my album release show on October 18, featuring all of the guest musicians on the album (Tim O’Keefe, percussion, Jenny Klukken, marimba, and Laura Harada, violin). I’m also planning on live-streaming it. More details here.

If you want to stay in the loop on the album and upcoming gigs, be sure to hop on my gig mailing list here!

So, what else did I do all summer?

A lot, it turns out! No wonder this summer seemed to go faster than ever. Workwise, I:

(NON-WORK) FUN STUFF

  • traveled to Denver to celebrate a good friend’s 40th birthday

  • traveled to New York to see Dream the Combine’s installation at MoMA PS1, which Tom spent most of June helping install, saw some college friends, and got to have a lesson with my teacher Vitor Gonçalves.

  • visited Tom’s family cabin in Hackensack, MN

  • drove to Iowa for a friend’s wedding

  • spent as much time with family and friends as possible

  • saw some great music: Ivan Lins, Bobby McFerrin, Matra, Hamilton de Holanda + Roberta Sá, and the Twin Cities Jazz Composers Workshop premiere concert

September is always a pretty crazy month, with the beginning of the school year, but this year promises to be even more so, as I wrap up Kickstarter rewards and prepare for my album release. I’m also going to New Orleans to attend the Being Boss Vacation at the end of the month, which is coming up fast! I’m really excited to connect with more fellow creative entrepreneurs, and keep living out my word of the year (CONNECT!)

NAVIGATING TRANSITION

All in all, it feels like a really big transition time right now:

  • I’m adjusting to a new school year, in a new teaching space

  • The seasons are changing (yet teasing us with warm weather, right when I was ready to be cool and cozy)

  • Tom is a few weeks into a new job

  • Etc.

I’m reminding myself:

  • That transitions of various sizes are constantly happening and take mental energy

  • That bigger and/or simultaneous transitions take even more energy

  • Even “good” transitions can be hard, and that’s fine

  • I need to cut myself some slack, generally, and especially during these times

  • I don’t need to start anything else new during a transition time, unless it’s something I really need

  • I can (and should!) do extra nice things for myself when I’m feeling out of sorts

  • I don’t need anyone’s permission for that...and neither do you!

If you need permission to go a little easier on yourself, here it is!

Are you going through any challenging transitions right now, school year, seasonal, or otherwise? How do you deal with it? Let me know in the comments. (You got this.)

New Sheet Music: Borboleta Azul

Introducing September's new release in my sheet music store: Borboleta Azul (Blue Butterfly). Like last month's new release, Baião da Bicicleta, this tune features baião rhythms, but also switches back and forth between that samba rhythms - it's a favorite of mine! 

Below is a preview of this track with percussion, which will be on my soon-to-be-released album of original Brazilian compositions and arrangements, Florescer, coming in October 2018! 

Borboleta Azul is available as a lead sheet for $2.99, and makes a great companion to Baião da Bicicleta.

Each month I publish one new piece - if you want to stay in the know about new releases, hop on my mailing list at the bottom of this post!

You can also check out the other pieces in my store (lead sheets and piano pieces) here

New Sheet Music: Baião Da Bicicleta

Introducing August's new release in my sheet music store: Baião da Bicicleta. Baião is a type of rhythm from Pernambuco in northeast Brazil, which is found in forró, coco, and other genres, and usually uses the zabumba, a type of bass drum with an awesome name. 

It was hard to name, but I kept getting images of determined bikers while listening to it, so…Baião da Bicicleta it is!

Below is a short version of this piece that gives an idea of what the head (melody) sounds like. 

Baião da Bicicleta is available as a lead sheet (with fully notated bassline, if you like that sort of thing) for $2.99, and the full version, with solos and all, will be appearing on my upcoming album of original Brazilian compositions and arrangements, Florescer, which will be released in October 2018!

Each month I publish one new piece - if you want to stay in the know about new releases, hop on my mailing list at the bottom of this post!

You can also check out the other pieces in my store (lead sheets and piano pieces) here

New Sheet Music: Maracatu do Manatim (Lead Sheet)

Introducing July's new release in my sheet music store: Maracatu do Manatim (Manatee). Maracatu is an Afro-Brazilian style of music played at Carnaval parades in Recife, Brazil, which you can learn more about here. It typically has a much faster tempo, but for a manatee-themed tune, I think a slower groove works!

This song came out of one of my composition prompts (from my free 5-day email bite-size composition challenge) to write an ostinato about an animal. I selected manatee (because who doesn't like manatees?!), and somehow it ended up sounding like a 70s cop show, so naturally, it became Donald the Crime-Fighting Manatee.

Well, Donald has recently moved to Recife, Brazil, and become infused with maracatu rhythm. I'm not sure if he's been solving any crimes there, but he is having a great time, and is super excited to appear on my upcoming album in October 2018, with lots of percussion! 

Maracatu do Manatim is available as a lead sheet for $2.99, and will be appearing on my upcoming album of my original Brazilian compositions and arrangements, which will be released in October!

Each month I publish one new piece - if you want to stay in the know about new releases, hop on my mailing list at the bottom of this post!

You can also check out the other pieces in my store (lead sheets and piano pieces) here

New Sheet Music: Tico Tico No Fuba Piano Arrangement

Introducing June's new release in my sheet music storeTico Tico No Fuba, arranged for solo piano!

This song was made famous by Carmen Miranda in the movie Copacabana in 1947, and the title translates to Sparrow in the Cornmeal (who needs to be shooed out of the food supply!)

Here's a video of me performing it a few years ago: 

Tico Tico No Fuba is available as a fully-notated piano piece for $4.99, and will be appearing on my upcoming album of my original Brazilian compositions and arrangements, which you can pre-order through June 19!

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Each month I publish one new piece - if you want to stay in the know about new releases, hop on my mailing list at the bottom of this post!

You can also check out the other pieces in my store (lead sheets and piano pieces) here