Thoughts On Art

The role of art (to me)

Amidst all the wounds this world is suffering from these days…including the Australian Bushfires,  Covid 19, and now racist terror calling for action…,and yes, we need to act, yes, Black Lives Matter (!), I have reflected on my own art-making a lot more. I used to be so careless….Or was I?

Stuck in between

There is a constant struggle (for me) as an artist with regard to how much of the ego to allow in. On the one hand, the job of an artist is to express human emotions and experiences by means of music and poetry…To do so I try using a language of the heart, rather than the brain. To deliver beautiful art though, I do need to feel what I am creating…which means writing from a place of ego (in a way), allowing myself to go through the drama, the joy, the love, the hurt myself….When sharing my music though, I wish for the artwork to speak for itself! I want my songs to „work“ without me being involved! I want the songs to be strong enough, to convey a message regardless of the artist behind.

And yet, somehow I must admit, that a lot of songs I love listening to myself, are closely linked to the artists that sang them! Some of my favorite artists brought their messages across because they as a person delivered the context for them! In a way pieces of the artists make the art!

Not sure if that makes sense to everyone.

Anyhow, I struggle to balance out the amounts of ego and narcisissm I am required to put in!

So far, most of my songs stem from my own experiences or experiences of close friends that I am close enough to, to really relate! Bit self-centered, right? Being an empath I can luckily also relate to people´s joy and pain even if I do not know them! Unequality and violence always hurt me! Love always touches me!

However, I wonder…

How much does art „need“ to contain a relevant message? How altruistic do we need to be? Some say it is the duty of an artist to reflect the times we live in and then process the observations by means of art. In a way I like this idea, because art can touch peoples´ hearts more than mere rhyme and reason. So it is a great means to bring about change, if needed! And yet: Who am I to preach?

To be honest, this point of view mixed with my fear of being too self-absorbed by writing about my emotions, has caused a block in me recently! I was unsure whether I am an artist at all! Whether I should stop sharing music altogether and just keep to myself? Whether I had to find a way to become more political, more cultural! More „relevant“!

But I found an answer (within and) for myself. In my opinion, art does not have to have a purpose per se! Art is the only „discipline“ that is rooted in complete freedom! And that also means freedom of purpose. Art does not need to make sense necessarily. If it resonates with you somehow, that is already enough! And even if it does not, that is fine! Art is expression, communication, magic….Art may cover all aspects of human experience…BUT! It does not have to focus on the „relevant, most prominent issues“ all the time! Art is not a political weapon in my opinion. It can be, but it need not be!

And: Self-expression and being vulnerable does not equal feeding the ego! Sometimes the opposite is true!

So maybe if you know an artist that is struggling with finding meaning themselves, share this post. Allow for them to just release whatever their soul demands. Because:

Art is free!

 

Cheers and happy weekend!

Katie

new year

Another year gone by!

Another year that´s almost in the books!

As always, my annual summary is due! And this year has been an emotional rollercoaster for sure!

Struggling with personal matters in ways, that left me drained and powerless at times,to the point that I wanted to fade into thin air….I managed to pull through and ground myself…The last quarter of this year has been tremendously good to me…and made me the happiest I´d been in a long time…as always, I find ways to screw up for myself in the end though!

But first things first…let me walk you through this year from the start to finish:

January-April

I remember being on fire over this new project I was about to start, called “The Song Brewery”. It all started over the Christmas break last year…I was drawing a lot, and drawing opens up my subconscious mind in weird ways. I suddenly feel more connected with myself and start processing things. I figured: I love songwriting, it´s part of my DNA and I really love teaching. I concluded that I had to make a move and create a platform for likeminded peers that want to learn with me and from me on their songwriting journey. The Song Brewery was begotten!

January through March were all about creating content, building a website by myself, learning to film screencasts and design scripts.

By April I was ready to launch an Instagram Account, set out to inspire aspiring songwriters worldwide.

But January through April were also important months with regard to my own songwriting career.

I took to the stage more than I had before…participated in songslams, sang on my first wedding, which was an emotional highlight for me, and wrote plenty of new material.

I launched and relaunched  a youtube channel for both the Song Brewery and myself and got (a little) more confident posting videos online.

In August my website launched! What a milestone! Simultaneously I was evaluating songs to be recorded as rough demos for my album.

September made me wanna hide in a hole and die! Luckily, time heals everything!

October marked a turning point like none before. The beginning of my album recordings (which got me hiding in a basement all through October and November more or less).

Katie is recording a music album! This dream has been a naïve revery of a 14 year old once, and has now become an actual project! The beauty of this mystery still leaves me speechless…those who know me, know I am a dreamer…but most of my dreams remain dreams…This one was supposed to come true! And it is! I´m beyond grateful!

Album recordings and my participation in Milla Song Slam in October have brought along more blessings. I got to meet an array of beautiful people that I deeply cherish and admire!

Among them the beautiful, quirky Charlotte Giers, and the wonderful and inspiring Melena! Shoutout to you girls! But most importantly…My crew of musicians and producers, namely, Patrick Thompson and Alex Keogh, Joel Moser, Mark Keane and the lovely Caroline Kelley, as much as their man in charge Jackson Lynch. They have enriched my life with their welcoming hearts and open arms!

My album is scheduled for release in early 2020! I am terrified! Poured my life into these songs!

This year I also started teaching guitar on the side and I am especially proud of Marlon (7 years old) who´s been staying committed for a whole year now! Well done, Marlon!

Looking back a bit further…My life has changed in a hurl since May 1st2015..a day that marked the beginning of my songwriting outcoming as I call it! I want to encourage every dreamer! Everyone in doubt, and everyone who´s shy! I am all of that! But things fall into place, if you have a little faith! I have a lot of faith! I couldn´t have pulled through some of the hard times without it!

For the year to come, my goal is to be strong and gentle always, to learn to accept and let go whenever I need to and to stand back up whenever I fall! Many changes will come and I have big plans musically! So, bring it on!

I am a child of the universe, the Lord, of love! Thank you all and Happy New Year!!

May all your wildest dreams come true, may you be strong and fierce in pursuing them and sweet and gentle in accepting your limitations! Wisdom lies in slowness. One step at a time!

Let´s start steppin!

 

Cheers,

Katie

 

fool

I´m a fool…that is fine!

Introducing album tracks (part three)

Hey guys,

what is new? Today I am filling you in on the idea behind Fool. You can have a listen at the track (old recording) here.

Fool was created in a moment all by myself (like most songs). I remember everything about the night I was writing it. I was feeling strong emotions of loneliness, being misunderstood and disconnected from the world and my surrounding. 

I am shy! Very shy! 

Some everyday situations, that are normal for most of us, can cause anxiety for me. Can make me tense and stress out. Social anxiety is a monster! And this song was a sort of relief I don´t always get from writing songs. I was baring my soul that night. To myself, by myself, for myself!

Being shy can make you wanna hide from the world and even in your friendships. It inhibits you from being who you are in front of other people. It puts you beneath others, when you should be standing eye to eye. 

Fool is a song I dedicate to everyone who feels the same. 

In the chorus, I present the only hope that sometimes remains. Which essentially is the faith that your suffering is for a reason. 

The last verse refers to that faith! To wanting to believe in love and consolation and some sort of compensation no matter how stupid it might seem to everyone else! And despite the doubts that roll along…

  

In my life I have often felt inner and outer perceptions clash!

People told me I seemed so happy when really I was going through the hardest battles.

Then other times, that I felt pretty happy with who I was and where I stood, they told me I looked sad!

I believe it has to do with keeping up the facade. Once you feel stronger within, you need less (figuratively speaking) make-up…You don´t need to throw a smile at everyone…and sometimes this may cause folks to think you are in a bad place…sometimes the opposite is true! 

Have a lovely week, my friends!

Here are the lyrics:

I´m alone

All my life

I´ll be alone

Noone by my side

I´m alone

Like a motherless child

Alone

 

I´ll feel lost

All my life

One in a million

With no place to hide

I´ll be searching

Until the day I´ll die

I´ll be lost

 

What if this place here on earth won´t lead to heaven?

What if it is already as good as it gets?

Will there be no compensation?

For all the struggles we´ve had?

 

Pull me closer

Close to your chest

Pull me closer

As close as could get

I´ve been trying

To keep my posture straight

But I failed

I failed

I failed

 

What if this place here on earth won´t lead to heaven?

What if it is already as good as it gets?

Will there be no compensation?

For all the struggles we´ve had?

 

I´m a fool

That´s fine

But I still believe….

I´m a fool to cry

But I grew up in tears

I´m a fool, but I´ll fight

What else could I do?

I´m a fool!

I´m a fool still loving you!

old vs young

Black and white only works for people with a wild imagination!

Introducing album tracks!

Something just crossed my mind!

Ever wondered why a lot of graphic designers and artists hang up all those b/w photographs? Yeah! They might need those to calm their active imaginative minds! To stay sane more or less….

I honestly love black and white photography- like really harsh contrasts and all! I love how they leave room for interpretation and imagination. But that´s the key! It does require an imaginative mind to fill the space! It´s not for everyone! And I guess some people rely on the b/w art for all the wrong reasons….

People that „think“ in black and white often don´t acknowledge all the cues inbetween! All the options, the truths, the lies, the questions and the experiences. They need something that leaves no room for doubt! Something that creates a sensation of safety and control. Knowing where you stand! The black end or the white end! The yes, the no! the ups, the downs! The dead, the alive, etc.

But what about the maybes, the somehows, the „let´s sees“, the in betweens, the awakening and the fading? What about the transitions, the stepping stones, the hopes and the fears? Aren´t they our favorite emotions? Isn´t that where life takes place?

The suspense in a movie? The unwritten parts? The options and the excitement?

It takes imagination!

Full stop!

This is kind of what my album track „Old versus Young“ is all about!

A situation in which two people with opposite points of view just can´t move away an inch from where they are at! Funny enough, we move from black to white in the blink of an eye, without even noticing, a lot of times. Why? Because we are destined to change constantly! Day to day and year to year…We are much more versatile than we think! It should make us more tolerant and open minded, as well! In an ideal world…i guess….

 

Cheers,

Katie

 

P.S. For those that want to support me in the process of creating my debut album, please check out my Kickstarter campaign here: https://www.kickstarter.com/

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One song at a time! Introducing album tracks!

Hey my friends,

 

I promised to introduce you to some of my songs that will make it on my debut album!

And today I would like to start by sharing the first two verses for „Everybody„.

 

This song reflects on some „false believes“ that we all fall prey to now and then.

We are sold a lot of „lies“ by the media, institutions and even by the people around us.

Aren´t we all brainwashed? Conditioned? Screwed?

In this globally connected world with its endless possibilities, everbody wants to make it big. And hard work can get you far- that´s what they say. But is that really true?

Aren´t we all worker bees made to believe we´ll be a queen bee if only we keep giving it our very best as a honeybee?  Hmmmm

Anyhow, here are the first two verses and I hope I can inspire you to give this topic some thoughts!

 

They sell you dreams in dollar stores    

They spread their lies in magazines

They tell you everything is possible

Call it American dream…

They say they care about your happiness

They say God bless, then wish you luck!

Beware of what you´re searching for

Maybe it isn’t in your blood

 

They tell you stories of a miracle

Made by ordinary men

They say if they can do it, so can you

They say we´re all the same  

They´ll ask you to believe in you  

Like you´re an omnipotent God  

Beware of what you´re searching for

Maybe it isn’t in your blood  

 

This song will most likely be one of the opening songs on the album! I cannot wait to present a snippet soon! So excited to hear your thoughts!

 

 

Best,

 

Katie

dav

Studio Recordings – Day 1 is in the books!

What a day! Friday 25th 2019! This is a stepping stone in the birth of my musical baby! The first paces are the hardest they say!

Not for me! I got to spend the day in the studio, listening to Joel laying down all drum grooves!

What a privilege to see and listen to somebody as talented as him play all day long for you! Playing to the songs you´ve written!

Every beat sitting in the right spot! Every brushstroke striking a chord within you! Beautiful!

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Day one was a success! But the hardest part (for me) is still ahead! Adding strings and vocals will take some time!

There´s no room for „almost good“. For once in my life, doing my absolute best is mandatory! Art means everything to me! My music

means everything! I want people to feel the same way about those songs! I want them to feel the love that went in!

It´s all about communication! About connection and comfort! My music has a purpose. I have a mission and you, yes- you,

who´s reading this, you who may listen, you have my heart!

I just wanna say: Thank you!

Tomorrow I´ll introduce my first song and let you know what it is all about! Stay tuned!

Cheers,

Katie