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Posts tagged ‘Music’

Scenes from the 2015 Three Rivers Arts Festival

 

As this blog owner does every single year, I took some time out to stop buy, and actually make a few purchases too, the annual Three Rivers Arts Festival in Downtown Pittsburgh, PA.

Here are a couple of scenes I would like to share with you.

Artistic trach can

One of the first things I noticed before even entering the main area was the beautiful decorated trash receptacles. How creative is that?

4th River Music Collective

Outside the vending area, a group of musicians calling themselves the 4th River Musical Collective played for the crowd.

Paper cutter

Hou-Tien Cheng, a master paper cutter, is a festival regular. I once bought a silhouette of a wolf off of him.

Quote

I just loved this quote at a vendor’s tent. it says a lot about life.

Dogs in the grass

This collection of public art by Fernando Orellana is called “Confluence” and was located in the waters along the underpass entering the inner section of the city’s Point State Park.

Subway mural

Although not part of the festival, this mural lines the wall of the station in which I caught the subway to ride home. It seemed like a fitting end of the day.

The story of the multi-talented Amy Oestreicher and her beautiful music

Music has always been a powerful resource for me.  As a kid, I was always writing songs in my head, daydreaming about producing my own musical with original songs.  But songwriting proved to be instrumental in helping me discover my own voice again after my life took a dramatic turn.

As a child, the arts were my passion and identity.  When my traumas occurred, they became my lifeline.    I grew up all my life in theatre.  I was singing, dancing, acting and creating since the time I could talk.  I lived my life believing I would carve a beautiful career out for myself in the world of musical theatre, be on Broadway, and conquer the world.  However, at 18, and a week before my senior prom, I found myself in intense pain – very suddenly and randomly.  I was rushed to the ER, and to summarize very briefly, my stomach exploded, I was in a coma for six months, and I was unable to eat or drink a drop of water for over three years.  After 27 surgeries, I was miraculously reconnected with whatever I had left.  However, to persevere through those tumultuous years took great inner and outer strength.  I relied on my creativity to get through.  My therapy was purely based in the world of theatre, art, writing, dance, music, and whatever else I felt was an area that I could express myself appropriately.  The arts were a way for me to express whatever felt too painful and overwhelming to put into words.  They also helped me process what I was feeling.  But most importantly, they served to be the greatest reward acting as a medium where I could still engage with my community, reach out to others, and make a difference in this world while utilizing my passion.  Arts were my way of connecting with the world, sharing my story, and spreading my message of hope, strength, and finding beauty in whatever life brings you.

To find myself again after so many medical interventions, I painted, I danced, I wrote, I sang – but it was the act of writing and putting those words to music – to sing them from my gut – this was what allowed me to accept my body again – a body vastly different from the one I grew up in.

Songwriting was my therapy, and within a month, I had written over thirty songs.  This song was based on some journal writings I had done when reflecting on life in the hospital.   I wanted the world to know what I had been through – to give the outside world a glimpse of my story, to explain why I came to be who I am, to “justify” why I may seem a “madwoman” after so many years of trauma…this song was my way of letting people in.

Read and learn more about Amy on her official website today or by checking out her blog.

Songs I’ve recently taken a liking to

From time to time we all get caught up in a particular song or two that for some reason or another seems to stand out a bit from the rest. It might not be the best piece of music but it has something about it that just makes your day or causes it to become an “earworm” if you will.

Here are a few that have had that impact on me recently that I would like to share.

Major talent on American Idol

There is no doubt that the long-running series American Idol has launched the careers of many aspiring musical artists.

Here are a few of my favorites from this year’s competition.

Nick Fradiani 

Joey Cook

Jax 

A quick glance at the American Idol Top 24

For a complete look at this season’t Top 24 contestants, check out this Hollywood Reporter Article. But for this post, I just wanted to go over the ones I consider a few of my favorites.

Top Girls:

Jax

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Alexis Gomez

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Joey Cook

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Tyanna Jones

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Top Guys:

Adam Ezegelian

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Nick Fradiani

nf

Qaasim Middleton

AMERICAN IDOL XIV: RYAN. CR: FOX © FOX Broadcasting Co.

Trevor Douglas

td

Cool mobile apps for practical use

As a creative individual, I am often impressed with the ingenuity involved in the creation of mobile applications. this is especially true of those that are also very practical in nature.

This being the case, I’ve decided to start of this new year with a list of a few high quality applications that you might find useful.

Brightest Flashlight

– Uses your phone’s flash as a flashlight for time when you need a little extra light.

download

Positive Affirmations

– If you’re a little down or stressed, this app provides simple words of encouragement with stunning photos.

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SoundHound

– Want to know what that song is you hear playing on the radio, in the store or pretty much anywhere? This app will help you find out the artist, song title and even album it comes from.

soundhound_hol1

MP3 Ringtone Maker

– Customize your own ring tones from ANY song and any part of it.

MP3-Ringtone-Maker-App_thumb

Mobile Scanner

– Uses your camera as a quick and easy portable scanner to send documents and store them for your records.

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The semi-unknown talent Esmee Denters

I recently got this young lay’s debut album (a protege of the multi-talented Justin Timberlake) and while it was OK, I can assure you this girl has pipes. Just to show you, I thought I’d include a few of her Youtube videos. After all, that was the way she was discovered if you will.

 

 

 

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