How To Rock Your First Open Mic

Are you a closet musician who wants a taste of the spotlight? Or perhaps your simply trying to work up the courage to perform in public? In this video, my first vlog, I give you tips to help you get prepared to play your first open mic, get past your fear, and set yourself up for success. I’m not asking you to stop being nervous, that’s natural. But I do give you tips for using that as motivation to prepare yourself, and your set… so you can get out there and shine. When you learn to move past your fear, you can create the life you really want.


Live and Let Live- An invitation to let it all go…

So we meet again. I hear a voice that jolts me out of my usual peaceful existence, demanding that I justify myself, my life, my choices, some actions I’ve taken, or beliefs that I hold. The speaker seems to be asking questions, but they don’t want the answers. The real line of inquiry is, “How can you be this way?”

My simple act of being me is somehow threatening to this person. I listen between the lines and I hear them saying, “There is only one right way to do things, one right way to live this life, and that way is my way. But you’re not doing it. What’s wrong with you?”  And to that, I say not much. I don’t feel the need to justify myself, to explain myself, to be understood. Its not my mission to convince anyone else to change their perceptions. Nor do I feel I need to change to make someone else feel more comfortable. Not when I accept myself the way I am. I just wish they’d stop nagging me and go bother someone else…

The people who ask these types of questions seem to be holding very tightly to some beliefs they’ve built their lives around. Beliefs that won’t bend. They tend not to be very open-minded. But if they were, if they were willing to let go even just a little, I would invite them to. I would invite them to get to know me, to get to know themselves. I would invite them to let go of that critical voice, that bossy overtone inside that says “I should do this” or “They should do that.” To let go of that need to try to control everything and everyone around them. To let go of the need to criticize and be criticized, to judge and be judged, to hurt and be hurtful.

I would invite them to embrace instead the idea that they are enough. That we all are good enough, smart enough, good-looking enough, healthy enough, young enough, old enough, wise enough, thin enough, strong enough, confident enough. That we all deserve to love and be loved, and to love and accept ourselves right now. Just as we are. Today. This instant.  Not later, after we’ve fixed everything that is we think is wrong with us and everyone else around us. Not wait to approve of ourselves after we finally get the job, the car, the house, the degree, the romantic partner, the raise. Not wait until we’ve paid off the debt or lost the weight or told off the nosy neighbor or conquered all of the myriad of skeletons in our closets. But NOW.

Wouldn’t it feel wonderful to stop criticizing yourself, to let the shoulds and the need for control all go right out the window…and just BE? To give yourself permission to be yourself and let others be themselves? Wouldn’t it be nice to let go of the stress of trying to control everything and everyone around you? And to be open to the idea that that there are plenty of right ways to do things, right ways to live life, and right ways to be? I believe there are at least as many right ways to be as there are beings in this world. If you, dear speaker, could allow them to just be, I think you would find life to be much more pleasing to you. You’d be able to find more joy, more love, and more reasons to be happy than you can allow yourself right now. You’d be able to stop asking those questions, to let of the need to be right, and start enjoying your life more. Live and let live- and let me be me.

At the same time I wonder, if I want to change this person, to invite them to let go, have I really let go of anything at all? Is this evidence of me trying to control my environment? Am I trying to make people change to make me happy? Its a slippery slope where I dwell. Well, I’m not going to get to caught up in that. I’m just going to be me.


How to Upload Your Own Songs to Soundcloud

Have you made recordings that you want to share with the world? Or perhaps you want to embed a music player in your website showcasing your very own music. There are a number of different options available online for you to do this. Today I’m going to walk you through how to do it free with Soundcloud.

To upload (or create!) a recording with Soundcloud, follow these easy steps: Continue reading

Recording Basics: How to Record Your Tracks using Free Software

To record yourself playing guitar or singing at home, here are some free tools you can use. I recommend using GarageBand if you have a Mac, and Audacity for PC users. These videos show you how to record your track alongside a backing track and export a new mp3, thanks to Berklee College of Music Online.

Recording in GarageBand Continue reading

Full Moon Drum Circle at Cathedral Rock

In Sedona, the locals have a time-honored tradition of celebrating the full moon with a drum circle, often held outdoors on this beautiful landscape. Its usually held at a place called Cathedral Rock, where drummers, musicians, dancers, spectators, dogs, and children gather on a red rock plateau to celebrate. If you arrive at just the right time, you’ll see the moon coming up over the rim in the east just as the sun is setting over the mountains in the west, providing a spectacular backdrop for the ceremony. I took some video as I was walking up the trail at Cathedral Rock, and arriving at the circle as the moon was coming up, during the full moon celebration last May to give you a little taste of the good life.

I also created this map to give you a virtual tour of the area. The video at Cathedral Rock appears as point 15 on the map. Enjoy…

How to Sing with a Strong High Singing Voice

If you’re a singer and you haven’t been to Kerri Ho’s YouTube channel, what are you waiting for? Get yourself there as soon as possible. Kerri is a great vocal coach with a fun, friendly style who offers truckloads of free training through her YouTube videos. She created a Complete Vocal Training Program and offers the first module for free at her website, the songbird tree. She also offers private vocal coaching for those who are ready to take things to the next level. Here is a sample of one of her lessons, where she breaks down how to safely develop a strong high singing voice with 5 vocal essentials, strong breath support, strong resonance, an open throat, strong head voice, and strong mixed voice. Does that sound like Greek to you? Just check out her channel for more explanation on all of those subjects.