Songs Are Like Poems, So Here's a Poem

*AUDRA* says:

I've always enjoyed writing. I remember from a very young age writing poems before I even started writing songs. I don't know if they were any good, but that doesn't much matter. It was more about the release. I still write poems to this day. Some situations call for a song and some call for a poem. And in some truly rare cases a situation calls for both. As most of you know, we released a song last year called "Lightning." There was also a big budget music video released for it as well. What you may not know is that "Lightning" was inspired by a real life experience. It wasn't mine. It was one I witnessed between a close friend and a very attractive man. It was a crazy ride and I wasn't even on it! So this is that rare case with a situation inspired more than a song, but also a poem.

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Never Again
 
I’ll never believe in love again. 
Nope, never. 
If you’ve seen what I’ve seen, you’d feel the same. 
Two people bound by destiny, yet destine to be apart. 
Love shared for mere hours, but a branding on the heart. 
A passion that wakes the soul and opens the senses. 
Seeing love like that, for the first time, through others glances. 
I’ll never believe in love again. 
How can I? 
It’s not meant to send you spiraling. 
Down the rabbit hole you go. 
You’re left
Euphoric
But Lost
Suddenly unwinding. 
I’ll never believe in love again. 
Well, I guess, maybe I will. 
Seeing lovers strike like lightning
What hope it can instill! 
Peace, but agony, to know the touch of the one from the touch of others. 
An unearthly experience to carry through time. 
Worth it just to fleetingly grasp it
To taste it
To relive
Breathe. 
In. 
Out. 
I’ll always believe in love. 

Go Placidly Amid the Noise and Haste, Peeps

Aaron says:

Change. I don't remember where I saw or heard it, but someone said, "the only thing that does not change is change itself." And it's true in every aspect of our universe. The seasons change, the times change, our bodies change, our minds change, and even our lives. And if you actually think about it many things have changed since you started reading this.

Some things change for the better and some things for the worse. The only thing we can do is be aware that things are indeed changing.  And if we have any control over it, we can try to make things change for the better. Unfortunately, we don't always have that control. So to shield ourselves in those times I think it is best to strengthen our inner spirit to help guide us through those changes. I'd like to share something that has helped me change my paradigm about life. Take from it what you will. And with this new season coming in I hope it can help change you for the better as spring brings new growth and new life.
 

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. 

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. 

© Max Ehrmann 1927 

Faring Thee Well Now, Colonel

*AUDRA* says:

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of our 6th member and former manager, Colonel Doug Grabowski. He was not only a great leader and guiding force for this band, he was a friend. Life will never be the same without him. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time. Colonel, this band wouldn't be what it is today if it weren't for you and your vision. You always believed in us and we will take your memory on every journey.

On a personal note, Doug was more than just a manger to me. He was someone I called my best friend for a very long time. I spoke to him everyday, all day. He molded me into the businesswoman I am today. Without his guidance I wouldn't be half the friend or musician I am now. Losing him is something I will feel for the rest of my life and will think about everyday. DGrab, I love you.

May the four winds blow you safely home. Rest easy, my friend. We love you.

Transformers Or Just The Two of Us

Aaron says:

So I was watching one of my favorite movies, Transformers, and I got to thinking about when I was a child. I always thought it would be cool to transform into something else and adapt to the situations at hand. I used to run around in the woods, grab anything I can find, and pretend that I was battling the enemy. Then reality set in. Even though I am still a child at heart and can act childish at times, I have had a recent and huge transformation, from a renter to a homeowner. Although it may seem like an adult transformation, I realized it allows me to be more like a child. I have my own place, I can do what I want, and I can build whatever I want. And in that lies the childlike qualities. I have a huge garage that I can build/fix things in. I have a great big backyard that I plan to build tree houses to play in and around. There will be zip lines, rope swings, and secret hiding places. All of these things and more will adorn my property. I know that sounds childish and yup, it is. Yet still I know I have to be responsible i.e. paying the mortgage, making sure all the bills are paid on time, and all the domestic engineering is being done. Although, I still have a chance to transform back into a child every once a while. I know this is not a typical topic anyone would think of while watching the Transformers now or as a child, but it definitely got me thinking. Back then in the woods as a kid, was a time when my imagination got the better of me and I had nothing else to worry about in life. My imagination still runs wild but I have more knowledge of the world and the way that it works. Being able to transform into the things you desire can be literal or figurative. I believe as long as you don't lose those childlike qualities you can always transform into whatever suits your mood and your lifestyle. So whatever life may bring you, whatever responsibilities you may have, always let your inner child be a part of who you are and don't scold them when you think something is silly or out of reach. Just find your secret hiding place, sit down, and have a chat with them. You may be pleasantly surprised with what the two of you conjure up.

What's Love Got To Do, Got To Do With It

*AUDRA* says:

As a relatively young band we've encountered and created a substantial amount of success in the few years we've been together. Of course, we've made our share (and then some) of mistakes, but here are some items I would like to share about things we have done that have worked really well that I think you will appreciate. 

1.        We trust, love, and respect each other. I've been very lucky that I've been playing and creating music with my best friend and guitarist Pat since we have been 10. My bassist, since 18. My drummer and keyboardist have been with us for 2 years, and we're family. Trust, love, and respect are the foundations upon our success. It's special, and something we don't take for granted. Without these three items, we'd be unable to accomplish anything. It may sound trite, but we encounter so many bands that are seemingly thrown together, or share the goal of money. It never works. Unless you live 24x7 for your music, your band, your career, and have people alongside doing the same thing, it never works. 

2.        We've invested heavily in ourselves. We have invested substantial sums of our time and our own money into Chaser Eight. We practice every Tuesday and Friday for several hours. New songs, live set, recording (check out Pat's CD Baby blog on the topic at http://diymusician.cdbaby.com/2013/08/5-tips-to-improve-your-home-recordings-right-away/). We're always doing something. On weeks we have a show, we practice on Thursday and do several run-throughs of the set we are going to play. We have self-recorded three EPs, and our fourth was a HUGE studio  production. We're always working on improvement. We just don't show up and play. It's a well-rehearsed performance.  

3.        We have people that believe in us. The first time I met someone outside of my immediate circle of family and friends that said he believed in me, my world changed. Here was someone who believed in me! And he invested in us. Many people have invested in us, and we're incredibly humbled by their support. Their belief in us helps propel us forward.

4.        We network. We're our own #1 fans. We have invested heavily in social media. I think that the days of someone buying a concept album like Dark Side of the Moon and getting a group of friends together and listening to, and more importantly, discuss, the album are gone. Today, we are competing with single tracks for $.99 and thousands of other things to do on a night than go see a live show. To embrace this reality, we have marketed to our fans directly: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, internet radio, blogs, and word of mouth. We've promoted posts and tweets with our own money. We've invested in a PR agency, which has produced tremendous dividends for us. We have engaged a manager to control everything but our music, so we can focus where we need to. Everyone we meet knows who we are, gets a band business card, and is incentivized to connect with us online (special free tracks, content, etc.). We have built our site out extensively, and have many new items in the works, too. 

5.        We say NO. Perhaps the most overlooked thought is to say NO. We adhere to a very specific gig schedule to accommodate many event locations and promoters with whom we speak. We want to leave our audience wanting more. We don't want to play three nights a week, not because we don't want to play, but because we can't draw and engage our audience. This way, we aren't over-exposed, and we are able to give our existing fans, our new fans, and people interested in us a great product.

These five items are just a few of what's worked well for us. I could tell you them all, but I want to leave you wanting more…