Winter weather in most of the United States is fairly uncomfortable for vanlife unless you want to stay deep in the south or the desert and then still, at night it can be a bit much. We heard a recommendation from other vanlife folks that it’s ideal to take a little break each year, you won’t burn out this way. So last year when we were offered a fairly long stay in Eugene, OR, we were grateful to accept the offer. It was a win/win for everyone, they wanted to get away from rainy, gray, cool Eugene, Oregon but wanted someone to occupy their house while they were gone. We see the wisdom as it gave us time to be out of the van and buckle down to work on some rather complicated projects.
Nicki Scully totally invested in us when she had all the confidence in our ability as a team to create a soundtrack for her Egyptian themed course, a guided meditation. Bright Hawk has done an entire series for Nikki, in the past, but with Sounds True. Hollis Taylor had just finished their online education in sound engineering and accepted the challenge on their first big project with Nicki Scully! Although Hollis has a huge history with tech they didn’t actually have a whole lot of music history. Hollis had just started allowing themself to be part of creating music but for the most part, kept to tap dancing and enjoying music. An old story told to them by their parents, “You are tone-deaf and you lack rhythm” which was later reiterated by friends and lovers. It was a hard message to hear sometimes because Hollis held such a passion for music and sound, but we can all relate to believing those older or bigger than you. Eventually, most of us wake up to question those old stories. Somehow, Nicki just believed in us and our first creation was more than she had ever imagined. Hollis was grateful for Nicki’s firm belief in them because in most cases that is all one needs to exceed expectations.
After Nicki’s recording we moved on to Bright Hawk’s album and we both learned so much in our experience. Hollis struggled with a learning curve not just in music but the tech, as well, Ableton is a complicated software. Bright Hawk struggled with being perfect. We all know that no performer is perfect but Bright Hawk had to somehow have a perfect telling of her story, perfect rhythm, and tons of perfectly tuned instruments. We aren’t even including the challenge of having average hardware. One of the most interesting things about watching a musician or storyteller live is that it is never the same, it’s not monotonous, and if it is, we aren’t usually having a very good time.
Bright Hawk is great with the Live Audience because she knows if she has a great time, so will her audience! Today, with digital editing and so forth we had to decide…. did we want to make her beats PERFECT like a computer? Many people love to dance to this and there is tons of music with this vibration and in fact, most people listen to music like this, today. Even though we know, a live musician is never perfect, as humans were not created that way – this is why we love DJs so deeply. The beat can help us trance out and dance out whatever we might be holding inside. Although world beat is not like this, much world music can’t be perfect because a human is playing the rhythm. In our struggle, we instead decided to record, edit and produce natural experimental music with stories but it still meant that Bright Hawk had to be as close to perfect as she could be. Not just in the rhythm but don’t miss say a word in your storytelling, let your voice go too high or low and a cold could really slow you down! As an experimental album, we just weren’t sure how others would like or not like it.
We intended it to be something you can keep in your CD player and listen from beginning to end. Our intention is that by the end you feel connected, loved, and positive – ready to continue with your day. The music and stories remind us of our humanity, human connection, how to help each other feel included, and our connection to nature. Inspiring and heart-filling, we want you to feel positive by the time your done listening. Instant positivity, perfect for the human race right now!
This year we extended our “out of van” time, again as house sitters! Deep in Eugene again we found ourselves now in service to Indigo – for her Egyptian online courses. Although this time, Indigo wants an entire set of 13 tracks for all the parts of her course. We are grateful for the work and grateful we gained so much experience last year with Nikki’s meditation and then Bright Hawk’s Music & Stories album. This year we notice we are more efficient, faster, and we both have better ears. Also, the naysayers’ voices are muted, including the ones on repeat! We, in fact, have fallen in love with making these guided meditations and want to keep creating them, regardless of the theme. Look for this in 2020 and beyond!
As Bright Hawk is playing with her kalimba to find the right melody for our newest audio project. Hollis is taking care of business and finds something, “Bright Hawk, WOW! We are sold out of our album at CD Baby, they want us to send our stock!” Bright Hawk freezes and stares at Hollis perplexed. Bright Hawk wasn’t sure if anyone would want this album as it’s different and experimental, it is not what everyone is USED to listening to. She took in what Hollis said and then reacted with, “No way!” Hollis smiles and shows Bright Hawk the screen where it says “Sold Out” and then clicks over to the email that sends “Please send us restock, you are sold out!” Apparently CDBaby’s favorite email to send! A fantastic email to receive when your not sure if it was worth the production time, energy and money.
We look at each other and smile. We did our best and we were both 100% authentic, we didn’t try to be like anyone else. Instead, we embraced our imperfections and now it looks like people might actually appreciate that. In our world today everything tells you to be LIKE THIS or LIKE THAT but we were made from the stars in perfection. Our imperfections are perfectly beautiful and the world is waking up to that, now. Looks like we are perfectly on time! Follow your heart, be exactly who you need to be because someone needs you to be that!
We are honored to announce that we will be part of Pagan Spirit Gathering in Missouri. We would love to see you there! Bright Hawk will be offering storytime for families and workshops related to storytelling. Also, Hollis is a featured author with their book Divine Androgyne: A Sacred Path for Gender Variant People.
We are also excited to be part of “Our Haven’s” Beltane in French Lick, Indiana! Bright Hawk is a featured artist and offering her storytime experience along with a workshop! Look for upcoming announcements about upcoming events for Summer of 2020.
Craving Bright Hawk drumming around the fire? If you have been craving a full Fire Circle with Bright Hawk – grab your gear because we are putting together a collaborative Fire Circle that includes DAYLIGHT dance hours!
YUP, that’s right we are adjusting the timing so that we can include children, families, elders, and individuals that might struggle for health or other reasons with the all-night model. So if you’re ready for something different watch for the upcoming website launch. Mark your calendar friends – June 4th -8th 2020 in McGrath, MN at a place called “The Shire in the Woods”. You can rent cabins and so forth, so if that’s your thing watch this email for more announcements! Our main intention is to be inclusive, we hope to dance with you in the LIGHT at Heartland Fire.