Already a year has passed since the release of Polishing Stones, my sixth album of original songs.
This year March 2015-2016 has been an amazing year of positive and creative work force! I have had the great fortune to tour consistently and perform for warm and receptive audiences in excellent circumstances and friendly conditions throughout Germany, Austria, Italy, and Spain. I would like to celebrate this anniversary by thanking the people who have been available, dependable, and involved with Polishing Stones disk in this first year of concerts and promotion.
First and foremost, I depend on Mats Hedberg, the unsinkable Swedish guitarist, who is always ready to hit the stage with me in DUO format, with positive and supportive vibes, sounds, and surprises. Playing together since 2012, I know Mats will first listen and observe, then make his move around my voice and guitar with his unique acoustic and electric playing style that supports and embellishes the mood of the song. He is always changing and adding new sounds and fresh ideas. I am motivated to play to my best ability in order to give him the foundation he needs to do his work. Transferring the sound of the recorded disk (with percussion, Chapman Stick or bass) to the stage is not a problem for us; the melody, harmony, and rhythmic arrangements are always centered in my chords and voice and Mats carries the ambience. We continue to improve our stage show in duo, and we look forward to the next show! Mats will soon have his own solo disk available at shows, as well as continuing to perform his pieces in our sets. I am thankful to have this opportunity to tour with a fun, creative, dependable, motivated, and honest artist and colleague; who also has a wonderful family in Roma whom I respectfully thank for their generosity to manage without him when he is out on tour with me.
Concurrently, with the release of Polishing Stones, Filippo de Laura, my artistic producer, introduced me to video-maker, photographer, Ari Takahashi. This has been a most important, surprising, and exciting collaboration! Ari has the ability to manifest a vision through moving pictures with remarkable care and attention to detail and emotion. He is a steady-cam kind of guy whom I quickly learned I could trust to bring out the best side of me on video-film and sound mixing; he is invisible at live-shows and a most precise and agile editor. We have created eight video pieces (YouTube) together this past year which are an essential part of the promotion to help the public to understand the artist and her music; the response has been tremendous. Ari captures me in a natural state and projects me to an additional artistic dimension. I look forward to our next project!
I have spent the year of concert touring and promotion with the indispensible aid of social network promoter Adriano Natale and Capture Studio who manages the wilderness of the internet with me and keeps the posts coming when I am on tour!
When an artist releases a work, this is a moment of reckoning; the birthing. I have always existed as an independent artist on the fringe of the music “business” ; this is the first time I feel truly involved with and supported by a record company; Beste! Unterhaltung, and it feels good. I am amazed and very thankful to be working with director of the company, Christian Pliefke, a person dedicated to cultural work. I feel validated, encouraged, and relevant as an artist.
My greatest heartbreak and frustration this year has been the lack financial flexibility which makes it infeasible to bring our beloved percussionist-drummer, Massimo Cusato, with us on tour in trio. Don’t give up on us Massimo! And a brief mention to fabulous, albeit absent, Spanish guitarist, Ernesto Cossío, who has unfortunately not been available for live shows.
There is always a plethora of invisible elves and worker bees behind the curtains I depend on and respect immensely, including: omni-present artistic producer Filippo De Laura (always in the wings for honest feedback), management counselor Mark Bleisener (affirming my existence and pointing me in the right direction: forward), graphic and website designer extraordinaire Rita Giacolone (BitBazar), photographers Giorgio Pace and Barbara Gravelli who’s Bee&Gio photos of me take on a life of their own, as well as visionary photographer Alessandro Sgarito who captures Mats & I in his unique lens, then there’s the tenacious booking agent Massimo Conficoni (Italy), and last, but not least, the best equipment endorsers a girl could ask for: Fishman Electronics, D’Addario Strings, and Ken Parker guitars.
I would like to end by thanking the wonderful fans, audiences and listeners, journalists and radio programmers, bookers, concert organizers, sound engineers, musicians, and technical advisors who continue to follow me and buy my music with open minds, ears, and hearts. You bring the songs full-circle back to me as a composer with your warm and truthful responses and your curiosity for original music. See you out there someday soon!
Best wishes to all for a healthy and heartful 2016