Wednesday, February 19, 2014

David Lanz & Kristin Amarie: A Love Story for the New Age

Emerging indie artist Kristin Amarie is a global citizen: born in Norway, she grew up in various countries including India, incorporating the music of various cultures into her own vocal style along the way.  Upon hearing the piano music of David Lanz, she was compelled to cross the globe for one of his Seattle workshops.  Over time, a love story emerged, and both artists began channeling this new energy into their recent solo works as well as a few collaborations, including lyric writing by Lanz, a rarity.  This casual chat on THE BUZZ explores their love, life and new music on Notes from a Journey (Amarie) and Movements of the Heart (Lanz)...

Monday, February 10, 2014

Capturing Love in a Song

When there just are no words, people are finding that Danny Wright is there to put their emotions into song.

Over the last decade, and from all over the world, people have reached out to Danny Wright, the composer and pianist also referred to by his loyal fans as The Healer of Hearts, hoping he can capture their love story in song. Word-of-mouth has spread of Wright’s unique gift for capturing a life or love story with his piano, and, to date, the artist estimates he has composed about 175 songs for loved ones here on earth or "already in heaven" as the soft-spoken artist would say.  The pieces written for these are shared on Danny's albums such as Full of Love, Gifts from the Heart, Reflections and even on his new reissue of the classic Real Romance.

A serene space for composing in Danny Wright's home.
Danny describes how he goes about gathering inspiration for each personal love song, saying “Once someone sends me a paragraph about their loved one’s personal story or their love story, I take some time to live with it. When it feels ready, I set aside time to meditate on the piece just before recording it in a very relaxed studio atmosphere. At that point, I feel that God takes over and the music simply flows through me until it seems peaceful and, somehow, complete. Some pieces are longer than others, and they vary quite a bit within the solo piano style. I feel really blessed and honored when people hear their song for the first time and call me, often in tears, saying that I truly captured the essence of their love story or beloved family member. On some occasions, they even order sheet music of the song to learn to play it for themselves.”

Danny recalls an example of a moving experience when a fan connected with Danny to create a song for his wife who had passed away. Sharing his feedback on the song creation experience showed Danny the importance a song can have in the healing process.

“Words are very difficult to describe how I feel about the song ‘My Guiding Light (Barb).’ The best I can come up with is WOW," the fan wrote in an email to Danny.  "It’s absolutely stunningly beautiful - somehow capturing the many beautiful, varied traits of her, a simply wonderful wife, Mom and friend to many. There is something very, very magical about this song...the way you have captured her many different traits and woven them into a tapestry of her as a person, sends a very warm shiver up my spine. Every time I listen to the piece, I feel different facets of her, which add to the picture you have painted with the song. I often take a blank piece of paper and write down different words/things that came to mind as I listen to the song. It's fascinating! I feel very blessed to have met you and have this wonderful keepsake made in memory of my wife, Barb.”

The composer and pianist, who is also a Steinway artist, can be reached for requests and more information via the contact page of his website at: 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

The Year of the Yang Wood Horse: Unbridle Your Energy!

As Chinese animals go, I still find it a little embarrassing to say "I'm a Snake."  And, if you know anything about how Chinese Astrology works, you'll know that I'm really happy to say goodbye to the last 12 months aka the Year of the Water Snake
*Need to find out which animal sign you were born under? Visit What's Your Sign now!*
After everything I've read over the past two weeks, I'm extremely excited about this Chinese New Year, as we move out of five years of deconstruction, and begin to feel the unbridled energy of the Wood Horse!  Are you feeling it already?  I find myself chomping at the bit for change in the form of positive improvements, new ways to express my creativity, and the promise of better relationships at work and play. 

If you still haven't explored what the year might hold for you, there are many places to do so.  Below is an excerpt of what Karen Abler Carrasco, WSFS Consultant, Mentor and Teacher writes about this year on the Western School of Feng Shui website:
"Now to turn our gaze to the animal symbol of Horse. This sprouting upward rush of Wood energy will find its perfect release into the impulsive and passionate nature of the Yang Horse, whose native element is Fire.  The Horse energy inspires powerful INTUITION and an indomitable surge towards freedom in every aspect of life. This is a year to follow your inner voice like never before, for it will have a universal cosmic ch’i within it.  Higher guidance is with us every step of the way.  Reach for the sky, call up your vision, fuel your plans with vision boards and creativity, find a fresh path and pace yourself well.  This yang Horse year has the potential to channel the powerful new upthrust of Wood’s Ch’i through the Horse’s Heart energy of Fire and into every project we start, every desire we reach for.  It will keep our eager plans from being dominated by too much “head” and not enough “heart.”
I don't know about you, but it sounds like just what we need to get our lives and communities back on track! Explore the fascinating full prediction by Western School of Feng Shui here, and lots of gorgeous Year of the Horse imagery.

Business folks, you might also enjoy this article on Huffington Post about money tips for the Year of the Horse.

Families can explore the Chinese New Year and its traditional celebrations on the fun-loving website China Family Adventure. 

Wishing you luck, and a happy, healthy and prosperous year ahead!

zhù nǐ hǎo-yùn 

祝 你 好运