In the first half of 2014, I didn’t write any new songs. I was wearing my professor hat and teaching reading, tutoring writing students, and hosting shows in San Jose. It was fun, and when I moved to London, I wanted to start over. I wanted to do better business,and I wanted to share my music. I knew that no one in London knew about QueenEarth. I wanted to read more, and I grabbed a few of The Great Courses on Audible.com. I studied entrepreneurship, leadership, education, and technology. I walked with my Fitbit around Hammersmith.
I practiced my vocals. I played more guitar, and I visited open mics. I worked with a few remote writing/editing students and learned to be a better online instructor. I even designed an online college composition course. I picked up The Music Lesson by Victor Wooten. The main lesson from the book? There are things to learn about being a musician; groove, rest, rhythm. As long as I play music, opportunities will come my way, and I will evolve. As I relate music to my real life experience, I can grow and learn in so many directions. I knew I was on the right path, so I set a few goals with the intention of bringing more music into my life.
Goal #1 – Work with new producers – Up until a few years ago, I had only worked Mo Rece at Stinkiface Music. After attending some open mics in London, I met an architectural designer who wanted me to be a featured artist on his upcoming compilation. I worked with him to turn his lyrics into a wonderful composition with the help of an amazing producer Salvatore Iacono . He was a great coach in the studio. We even shot a music video. Check out “Love Will Find Its Own Way.” This was my first music video 🙂 It was great to work with Dwight Duroni Davy at Duroni Music. Make sure you read the liner notes in the YouTube thread. This vision was the work of an awesome team under great leadership. Thank you Dwight!
Goal #2 – Get one of my songs in a soundtrack/show – Late one night in early January, while scrolling my Facebook wall, I saw that an Oakland based web series was looking for music submissions. I e-mailed a few QueenEarth songs and took a leap of faith. I sent a song that I made in 2009 with my then co-writing partner, LOVE the poet. They picked two of my songs. “Stargazer” and “Doo Rag.” Recording “Doo Rag” was so much fun. I have never laughed so hard in a recording session. Listening to this song reminds me of my single, clubbing, open mic poetry hopping, younger artist self. I had just come out of the closet and I was sharing my music in Baltimore’s open mic scene. I was also writing rap lyrics and beat-boxing with my favorite emcees. Those were good memories, and I hope you make some new ones with this show and rest of the songs on the soundtrack.
Dyke Central premieres on April 10, 2015 on VOD. I wish I could attend the event, but I’m having my own personal viewing party with my friends on the East Coast. I really enjoy the show because it is edgy, colorful, and a much needed version of queer culture in 2015. Best of luck to the cast and crew! My songs are in episode 6 and 9. This is really a dream come true. I also know some fellow DMV artists on the soundtrack. Check it out on SoundCloud!
Goal #3 – Make new music – In my hunt for new producers, I was bound to do a new song or two. I made some music with a new producer and he really pushed me to new vocal heights. My homie in London, Imperial Raja, is an amazing producer and musician. He is also working on some new YouTube postings and hosting a new event. I can’t wait to share our songs. He is truly talented and I’m glad to have met him during my UK adventure. He is hosting his own London open mic and I hope you’ll see him performing with his band Kingston Uprising.
So far, this year is starting out well! I’m back in Baltimore, and I’ve got a few more tricks up my sleeve, but may I ask you? What would you like to see from QueenEarth in 2015? E-mail me at QueenEarth@queenearth.com and help me move towards more career milestones.