Hiatus

I figured I should put an official note up here before someone thought this blog was abandoned. It is not.

It is, however, going on an official hiatus for the summer.

I need a break. I want to keep blogging, but I need to figure out what I want this blog to be. What I want to post. How often I can manage to stay in contact with everyone who reads. I have a lot of decisions to make on this front and I need to take a little time to make them properly.

I am also just, temporarily, burnt out. Between my health, work, and life in general I need to step back for a little bit and regroup.

So please don’t go anywhere. I will be returning here sometime at the end of summer / early in the fall.

I look forward to speaking to all of you then.

W is for Wing Works

W is for Wing Works

W is for Wing Works

A short little post for your Saturday. Traipsing into the slightly harder side of Japanese rock. (Only barely though!)

Introducing a fairly new artist I’m watching quite enthusiastically: Wing Works.

Wing Works consists of Ryosuke, the bassist from the now disbanded Lolita23q, as the vocalist and a session band that backs him up. He has a lovely voice, great charisma, and strong music.

Sharing his newest (and my current favorite) of his below!

Uwakimono – Delivering Something Unique

U

U is for Uwakimono

Despite most of my day-to-day listening consisting of bands primarily from Japan and South Korea, I really do love a wide variety of music. When I was little my favorites were Michael Jackson, Reba McEntire, and Elton John. I eventually grew into thriving on classical music, new age, Gregorian chants, and relaxation. I had my pop era with Britney Spears and the Spice Girls. Then I fell in love with rock, and had favorites ranging from popular rock to screamo to symphonic to metal and more. And you know what? I still love a large variety of music from all of those artists and styles.

No matter what genre, however, I love finding an artist or a song that sticks out to me as something very unique. Something that doesn’t sound like everything else. (Not that I don’t like everything else too.)

Takeru Professional Image

Takeru
Professional Image

Uwakimono (浮気者) is the new solo project of Takeru from SuG. SuG is fairly diverse in what they bring to the table as a band, and to be honest their music is hit and miss with me. (I highly suggest listening to either mad$hip or sweeToxic if you want a good taste of them.) I really do love Takeru’s voice, however, so I was excited to see what he created when striking off on his own.

What I heard was a pleasant surprise. I heard a rock song that was anything but mainstream. I heard a melody that could only perhaps be called such due to the obvious repetition of notes in expected locations (i.e. chorus), but certainly nothing about it sounded ‘right’. I spent nearly 3 1/2 minutes waiting to sink into a familiar, comfortable chord progression of any kind and instead was left feeling slightly ‘off’ the entire time. In the best possible way.

In addition to that, Takeru pulled in a variety of sounds from classical Japanese music and used them beautifully to weave a song that sounds like no one else. This is anything but your afternoon rock radio. This is Takeru, and the sounds of a Japanese artist with no desire to sound like anyone but himself and his home.

Keeping Thoughts

T is for Thoughts

T is for Thoughts

The internet is full of all sorts of year-long crafty ideas. Things like the 365 Photo Challenge. (Which I have failed at twice because some days I just don’t feel like taking pictures…)

I love the concept of these projects. Something fairly simple that, at the end of the year and beyond, you can look back on. Celebrating the small things in life that might be appreciated in the moment, but just as quickly are forgotten.

The key is finding a project you can stick to. If it causes you more stress to keep up with it than the joy you find in doing it, it no longer remains worth doing.

My memory jar

My memory jar

I present… the memory jar.

THIS is a project I can keep up with.

I suppose it falls back a bit on my love of journaling, but the difficulty I always have in keeping up with a blank notebook properly. I’ve already talked about my 5-year journal being brilliant at catching my ideas and beliefs from day-to-day. This, however, is a memory jar. The theory is that you take the time to put little thoughts in it throughout the year. Moments you may not remember in the big scheme of things. Then, at the end of the year or on the first day of the new year (depending on preference) you empty out the jar and read back through the year. That’s right… once something goes in the jar NO PEEKING until the year is done.

I’ve put in bits of writing, silly conversations with my husband, observations with my dog, outings with friends and family, and all sorts of things in there. It’s taken some practice to remember to write things down for the jar, but after 3 months it’s a habit I’m starting to get into. The jar itself doesn’t look very full right now, but there are multiple little slips of paper on the other side and tucked in between the ones you see too.

The only other rule beyond ‘no peeking’? Only happy things go in the jar. Only good things.

As you can see I’m using colored bits of scrapbook paper to make things a bit more fun and I’ve decorated the jar too. The full quote on the jar says “It’s the small stuff in life that really matters most.” I found it appropriate.

Next January I hope to assemble all of these thoughts into a very small scrapbook of sorts, but I know me and those projects. I always have the ideas and rarely get around to finishing them. Maybe that will be changing soon too!

I’m a crafter at heart, I just have to let myself have the time!

S is for SHINee!

S is for SHINee

S is for SHINee

A brief post for your mid-week madness. I have talked about the Korean pop group, SHINee, and I’d love to share them again today for all of the newcomers dropping by.

SHINee consists of Onew, Jonghyun, Taemin, Key, and Minho, who currently range in ages from 20-24. The group initially debuted in 2008 and is still very well-loved today!

I love them for many reasons, but two of the biggest are their voices (they all have unique qualities I can usually pick out without much effort) and their dancing skills.  They are amazing to watch perform on stage and the music videos only show a little of it.

Today I’m just posting two videos for you. The first is Lucifer, the first SHINee song I heard that got me totally hooked. The second is Everybody, a more recent song from their last album. There are some great bits in that one toward the middle.

I hope you enjoy!!

Resolve in Art

R is for Resolve

R is for Resolve

Art takes resolve. It isn’t easy. No matter your craft it takes time, effort, and a willingness to ride a long list of ups and downs. Sometimes, especially at the beginning, the ups are only there to make the downs possible, but with perseverance this pattern can change. It takes resolve to start the project and see it through.

Resolve is on my mind right now because of a project I just committed to. Something that is bigger than I’ve pushed myself for ever before, but something that is possible…. if I hold my resolve and see it through.

I won’t talk too much about it just now, save that it is a writing project, until I see how things go for me. I have a very scary deadline of finishing this project in a month and a half if I am to see this first attempt at it through. There’s a lot of work for me to do. Hopefully I’ll discover a few things about myself along the way.

What do you do to find and maintain your resolve in creating art?