Tag Archives: Singing

Follow Your Passion

Not everything in life is about money. Yes, we need money, I’m not saying we shouldn’t work or be responsible. What I am saying is when we truly follow our passion, money isn’t the motivation, purpose is.

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My wise father once said, do what you love and the money will follow. His passion is cooking, singing and people. If you see my father, you see me. I probably would have followed in his footsteps and taken over his restaurant, if I wasn’t passionate about the arts. I was good in the restaurant business because I love food and people. Yet, the restaurant business wasn’t for me.

My passion was the arts. I spent hours listening to the radio growing up. My mother bought me my first phonograph at the age of seven. I had 45’s and I would listen to them over and over. I would take walks from my house to Sam Goody on Queens Boulevard, where I was introduced to musicians like Al Di Meola, who is a radical guitarist and ahead of his time.

I didn’t realize I had a singing voice until two musical directors from a play I was in, told me I had a beautiful voice. I thought they were just being nice, until my peers started to tell me the same thing. It was then that I started taking singing seriously and found a coach.

In the midst of this, I loved to dance (still do). My mother was a professional dancer, so I started dancing as soon as I learned to walk. But, in order to get into the top clubs in Manhattan, I needed a fake ID. So me and my friends took a trip to 42nd Street and got ourselves some. It was then that I started frequenting clubs like, the Palladium, Red Parrot, Copacabana, Limelight, Tunnel, and much more.

Yes, music is a passion of mine. But so is reading and writing. I started reading books and keeping a journal as a kid. I devoured books and poured my feelings out on to the page. I also started dabbling in poetry, by the time I reached High School, I submitted my poems to the school newspaper and they made it to the front page. I also drew, so I would draw something that would coincide with my poems which was a plus.

But sadly, for years, I didn’t think I was a “writer”. I knew I was an actress, singer, dancer, and artist, but for some reason, I never thought I was a writer. This discovery happened later in life, when I read Jeff Goins book, You Are A Writer.

If you are not sure what your passion or purpose is, I highly recommend reading his other book, The Art of Work. Jeff is a good friend, colleague and mentor of mine. I have watched him do some amazing things over the years. He is inspiration to me. If you don’t follow his blog, I recommend that you do. I have learned so much from him.

If you don’t know what your passion is, you won’t know what your purpose is either, because passion and purpose go hand in hand. I encourage you to explore and discover what your passion and purpose is, because once you do, you will feel fulfilled.

Are you struggling with knowing your passion or finding your purpose? If so, let’s discuss it in the comment section below.

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Why I Auditioned For The Voice

There was thousands ahead of me…

And thousands behind me…

I became friends with the dude in the light blue shirt. His name is Skyler Kite. His mother rescued me from the ravages of heat. She saved my spot on line, so that I can go in the shade to cool off. What an angel. This is where I met her son, Skyler, he was hiding from the sun too.

Little did I know that he and another young lady would be accompanying me through the maze of long lines. We wound up laughing a lot and having a good time. It reminded me of my acting days.

There is a camaraderie in the arts. When I was in acting school, the other students and I became close. We had a lot in common and shared the same dreams and aspirations.

But let me get to the reason why I decided to audition for The Voice.

Last Wednesday, I never made it home after work. At Port Authority, I began seeing flashing lights in both my eyes which came out of nowhere. I was unable to see and it made me very nervous. I wound up being taken in an ambulance to the hospital. They ran all sorts of tests and found nothing.

They released me on the grounds that I would see my neurologist within two days. I went the following day and gave a ton of blood. I still do not have answers, but he thinks it may be migraines. I do suffer from migraines, but he tells me the flashing lights in the eyes is a precursor to a stroke. Great.

Hearing that kind of thing woke me up and made me see my own mortality. Which is why I decided to go out on a limb and audition for The Voice. It was mostly an exercise to face my fear.

If truth be told, I was never comfortable performing or singing in front of people.

I love music. It is a passion of mine besides books. My escape is music and books. So early on, I decided I wanted to be an actress and singer. I also frequented dance clubs (yes, underage). I loved to express myself dancing (still do). But once I got into the professional aspect of acting and singing, it was no longer fun. It became cut throat and competitive.

I’m not a competitive person. Never was and never will be. Which is why I was talking to everyone freely at The Voice audition. I was genuinely excited for everyone there and wanted them to do their best. I have a passion to encourage the youth to pursue their dreams.

I have to say, all The Voice staff were cool. I have never seen such friendly and approachable people at an audition in my life. I give The Voice a big kudos for hiring the nicest and friendliest people. This helps makes the experience unique and a positive one.

By the time we reached the final stretch, we were put into groups of 10. We waited against a wall to enter a room with the judge. We each sang our selection and when we were done, the judge selected a 15 year old who sounded a bit like Alicia Keys. I was happy for her, she is just starting out her singing career and that’s an incredible way to begin. I spoke to her prior to her audition and she said this was her first time auditioning for this kind of venue. I told her it was mine as well.

All in all, it was a great experience. I faced my fear, I auditioned well, met some amazing people and had a good time. I couldn’t ask for more.

Have you ever auditioned for The Voice or something similar? If so, how was your experience?

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Insecurity, The Bully

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Do you know her? Insecurity? If you do, then you know she’s a possessed bully.

Insecurity has an uncanny way of showing up even when she’s uninvited. She is obnoxious and rude. She is no friend of mine. No siree.

Insecurity annoys me to the utmost. Every time I think I’m going to beat her at her own game. She winds up winning.

What makes matters worse is that she’s always laughing at me. You know the sinister kind you hear in a horror flick. Infuriating.

I want to kick her in the butt, like “Karate Kid” or “Rocky”.

Insecurity has been bullying me all my life. Every time I would get on stage to sing, I would hear her cackling and saying, “Ha! She thinks she can sing. Watch her crack or forget her lyrics. It’s hilarious.”

I start to recite scriptures to myself to drown her out. Nothing works, I could feel my throat constrict, heart race and palms sweat. Insecurity wins again.

Insecurity always sneaks up on me unawares as I sit staring at a blank page. She howls, “You can’t write, just like you can’t sing. There are so many other talented people who can really sing, write and do everything much better than you. Haven’t you realized you don’t matter? Nobody is even remotely interested in what you have to say. Look at you, what have you accomplished in your life? You are going to be 46 years old and you’ve done nothing. Zip. Zilch. Nada. You know why? Because you are a loser with a capital ‘L’.”

At this point, I’m either going to do “Moves like Jagger” or go “Rambo” on her. Or better yet… shoot her! Metaphorically speaking, that is. I shalt not murder. So, get thee behind me… Insecurity.

I’m sick of listening to her go on and on and on. She’s incessant and never shuts up. I’m tired of her already. I want to be free of Insecurity, once and for all, whatever the cost.

Do you struggle with insecurity? Are you ready to kick her in the butt and tell her where to go?

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