A different kind of Christmas 

As many of you surely are as well, I will be spending the holidays this year missing a number of family and friends, due to restrictions put in place to keep us all safe.  In spite of the important reasoning behind this holiday’s changes, I can’t help feeling a bit lonely this year and I imagine I’m not alone in that.  So, instead of wallowing in thoughts of what I don’t have for Christmas this year, I decided to have some fun and try to spread some holiday cheer by making a video of one of my favourite Christmas songs: “Santa Baby”.  If you watch the video, I hope it makes you smile, but whether or not either of those things happen, I wish you the very best of holidays.  Take care of yourselves (and that means your spirit too; don’t forget the importance of finding bits of joy wherever you can).



Escaping into nature and love 

Today I am releasing the live off the floor performance I did for the Songs4Nature show last month.  I wanted to share my new song “Waiting by the Shore” with everyone (rather than limiting it to the people who could make that show - one benefit of digital shows).  If you’re interested, it’s on this thing I recently heard of called YouTube.  Wait, does 13 or so years count as recent?

Anyway, I’m really excited to share this song with you, as it’s one I’ve been continually working away at for a while.  I got the initial idea in February last year, but this year is when it really came together.  I even made some significant edits shortly before the show in August - the song was so hot off the press for that performance, I was happy to be able to get through the current version without reverting to the previous one.  I say current because just as the song changed this past summer, there is no guarantee it won’t change more in the future.  Songwriting is such a fluid art form and songs can change over time, particularly prior to hopping into the studio and releasing the resulting mastered recording.  That being said, I’m thrilled to share this performance of the latest version of “Waiting by the Shore” with the world.  (I doubt everyone in the world will watch it, so technically I’m sharing the song with whoever wants to watch it.  No need to worry, I do have realistic expectations; I know this won’t get Taylor Swift level views on YouTube, her audience is a just touch bigger than mine.)

Fun Fact: The first line of the song is the first line I wrote.  In fact, the lyrics of the first verse have remained unchanged since the first day I wrote them.

Wishing you health, safety and happiness.


P.S. It’s possible the title of this blog post makes no sense unless you listen to the song.  Feel free to let me know.  (Having written the song, I happen to have heard it before, so it’s hard for me to be the judge on this one.)

First Digital Show + Songs 4 Nature Camp 

Happy Thursday!  I just wanted to write a quick update to let you know what I’ve been up to musically lately.

I recently participated in the first ever digital Songs 4 Nature camp, which is a songwriting camp for Saskatchewan artists that is put on by the Royal Saskatchewan Museum.  It focuses on the connection between nature and songwriting and finding ways to use nature as inspiration.  I have never attended one of the in person camps in previous years, but was very happy to take part in this digital version.  It was a really fun experience that took me a bit outside my comfort zone and had me explore music in some different ways.

The camp officially comes to an end this weekend (Saturday, August 15th) with a wrap-up show featuring performances by both mentors and members from the camp.  There will be over a dozen performers and the whole show is a fundraiser with all the proceeds going to ‘Friends of the Royal Saskatchewan’, to support local nature-based research and education programs.  I, along with all the other artists, will be performing one song, so there will be a wide variety of music throughout the evening.

I will be premiering a new song during the show, one that was inspired by nature (among other things), so if you want to be among the first to hear it, feel free to pick up a ticket for only $5.  It’s supporting a great cause and great programs such as this one.

Lastly, in case the title was in any way ambiguous, I shall explain.  This will be my first ever online/digital show and I’m glad I get to share the experience with a group of artists, many of whom are also in the same boat.  We’re all in this together.  (Naturally, now I’m thinking about High School Musical - some of you will know why, but if you don’t, just pretend my post ended prior to this bracketed section.)

Stay safe.


Some Good News 

When I thought of what to title this blog post, the first thing I thought of was borrowing a page from John Krasinski's SGN (Some Good News) book.  (Okay, technically it's not a book, it's a YouTube show, but they're basically the same thing, right?)  In a time of such uncertainty and quite a bit of negative news, it's extremely important to remember the good things.  SGN is doing that and so are other talk show hosts and artists.  Many people have been finding ways to entertain us and remind us of the positivity that exists in this world.

I've decided to join the positivity party by releasing my first real YouTube video!  I had one of my original songs filmed 'live off the floor' (a.k.a. one take audio) prior to the pandemic and instead of questioning whether or not now is the right time in my career to release the video, I simply asked myself if it was the right time for me and (hopefully) for the people watching it.  If I can provide something new for people to watch and/or listen to during this time that might bring some joy or even just a distraction from life's problems for a few minutes, then I want to do it.

The song itself, while upbeat, addresses mental health, so I also thought the content would be fitting, given the number of medical professionals who have stated the toll that this situation is taking (and/or will take) on everyone's mental health.  I have experienced my fair share of mental health issues prior to all of this and am a firm believer that the more we talk about it, the more effective we will be at reducing (and hopefully one day all together eliminating) the stigma that exists around mental health. It is for this reason that I try to be as forthcoming about my issues as possible, inspire of my fear of being judged for them. (When thought about from a medical standpoint, such a fear ought to be ridiculous because any issues with the mind are medical and therefore one shouldn't be judged for a mental illness any more than for a broken leg, but unfortunately that's what a stigma does).  I say this now because I want you to know that if you are suffering from any mental health issues, you are not alone and because I want to encourage you to please, pretty please, reach out for help when you need it, as scary as it is.

In an effort to add in a touch more fun, I created a Trailer for the song I'll be releasing on Thursday at 12pm CST.  It gives you something extra to potentially entertain you in the meantime.  Hope you enjoy and that you are staying safe and healthy.


Remember me? 

It has been quite a while since my last blog post.  Did you wonder where I went?  Maybe you didn’t, but for anyone who did, I’m going to tell you.  In 2016 I started having health problems that affected my breathing and caused pretty bad coughing fits, which prevented me from being able to sing for quite some time.  As that issue was beginning to resolve, my boyfriend proposed and I went full steam ahead into wedding planning.  For anyone who has planned a wedding, I think you know how very time consuming it can be.  I had no idea just how involved it would be until I was in the middle of it making millions of little decisions and stressing over all of them for fear that any decision could be the wrong one.  (I may be a perfectionist.). All the time and enegery spent was well worth it because I got to marry the love of my life and have a really awesome party celebrating our love with family and friends.  

This brings us to now: the year 2019.  With my singing voice back and the wedding behind me, I am finally able to get back to music again.  The first thing I’m doing is performing a show one week from today at the Creative City Centre in Regina.  It is the first place that ever paid me to play music, so I couldn’t be happier to have that be the location of my first performance after this long break from music.

At the show next week, I’m going to be performing a new song for the first time, along with some others you might recognize if you’ve been to some of my live shows before.  I also get to share the stage with two wonderful ladies: Annie Sumi and Piper Hayes.

It is going to be a wonderful night.  I’m looking forward to it.  If you live in the area and happen to read this blog post in the next week and want to come by, please do.  I won’t stop you.  Promise.

It's not about me... only sort of... 

Last year around this time, I was fortunate enough to take part in Divas Night Out, a fundraiser for Women's Shelters in Regina.  This year I'm not involved in the event, so I was completely taken by surprise when I opened the paper this morning and saw myself.  I won't lie, I was excited to see myself in the paper - it was a wonderful reminder of the great experience I had at last year's event and it's especially nice to be reminded of right now since I've been unable to do music for over a month due to an extremely clingy chest infection.  That being said, I have no stake in this year's fundraiser and while I'm psyched they included a photo from last year's event, I urge you to focus on the words rather than the picture.

The fundraiser is this Friday night (October 7th) at Double Tree by Hilton and they're having trouble selling tickets. It's a great cause (the proceeds go to shelters that help women and children escaping domestic abuse) and the change of venue means it's now open to all ages.  Last year's event was a blast so I would bet this year's will be as well. If you're free this Friday night and have the money to attend, please do, or if you know someone who might be interested, please tell them about it.  This annual charity event may not continue beyond this year if they don't sell enough tickets by Friday.  For more information check out this Leader Post article or the Diva's Night Out website.

What do love and a deck of cards have in common? 

Add them together (along with a bunch of other words) and you have my new song This Deck Of Cards!  I'm really excited to be performing it for the first time tomorrow night (July 7th) at The Capitol with my friend Kara Golemba!  

Harmonies - Check.  
Guitar - Check.  
Keys - Check.
Deck of Cards - Not Check. (I probably don't need to bring an actual deck of cards with me... although now that I've thought about it, I kind of want to... just because.)

"There are no other suits in this deck of cards
There's only hearts"

Debuting a new song with a little help from my friend... 

A week from now I'll be debuting a new song during my performance at The Capitol in Regina, SK with the help of my good friend (and talented singer-songwriter) Kara Golemba.  We've been getting together for rehearsals over the last few weeks, with our final rehearsal yesterday afternoon.  All set to duo the heck out of my new song on July 7th.  
Me & Kara at our last rehearsalMe & Kara at our last rehearsal.
Not all the guitars will be used in the performance.  It's just a lot of guitars (and a mandolin barely making the shot on the left).
Not all these guitars will be used in the performance.  That's just a lot of guitars.

I'm back! And I'm breathing! 

I know I haven't been around much for the last while (since the beginning of this year to be exact) and that's because my year started off with some pretty serious breathing problems (has anyone else ever noticed how amazing it is to breathe?!) that made me his the pause button on music (and a lot of other things) for a while.  (This might seem odd, but when you can't really breathe it's a little hard to sing.  Who knew, right?)

Finally, after 4 long months, my breathing is back to normal and one week from today I'll be taking the stage for the first time in 2016!  I cannot even begin to explain how incredible it is to be able to get back to music and to connecting and sharing with all of you (I missed you guys so much!).  

In short, my 2016 feels like it's starting a bit later than everyone else's, but I'm sure glad to be joining party!  I'll even be unveiling some new tunes at next week's show in celebration, so come by if you want to be the first to hear them.  I'll be splitting the bill with 2 other talented ladies (Kara Golemba and Kenzie) at the Creative City Centre in Regina, Thursday May 12 at 8pm (doors at 7:30).  Tickets are on sale now (see my Events page for more details).


Girl Power!! (or Woman/Female/Lady Power) 

Women are [insert flattering term of choice here]!!
Women are also [insert other flattering term of choice here]!!

(Not saying those with both X and Y chromosomes aren't also awesome (because you are!), but this post is about the ladies.)  

As it happens, the last 3 performances I've had were also all about the ladies!!  It wasn't planned that way, but sometimes cool things happen on their own.

1) First, there was Divas' Night Out in October.  This fantastic fundraiser at the Casino Regina raised $5500 for local Women's Shelters (Regina Transition House and YWCA Isabel Johnson Shelter)!!  In its 13th year, Divas' Night Out is an event put on by women for women - a truly female powered fundraiser, it's a great example of "girl power"!  A huge thank you to all the women who made that night what it was! (And a huge thank you to the men who came out in support of women!) Special thanks to Tess Boehm for putting together this year's event and inviting me to be a part of it!

Left to Right (Tess Boehm, Me, Frank Boehm)

2) Next up was Women In Song at Bushwakker (Regina) earlier this month.  This series celebrates "women in song" by featuring local female singer-songwriters.  I had the great pleasure of performing with the very talented Megan Nash and Kara Golemba!  Not only are they uber awesome at music, they're also incredibly super human beings.  If you haven't heard either of them before, you should definitely check them out!

Left to Right Guys (Chris Mercer, Brent Nielsen, Taron Cochrane); Front to Back Girls (Megan Nash, Me, Kara Golemba)

3) Last but definitely not least was Girls Night Out this past Thursday (November 19) at the Club (part of the Cultural Exchange in Regina)!!  Again featuring local females in music, this event was put together by Kaeli Dane, a sweetheart and a wonderful singer-songwriter!  I had the great pleasure of both meeting and hearing her music for the first time that night and it was fantastic!  In addition to Kaeli and myself, the 3rd act of the evening was Lysh Music who took the stage for their first ever performance!!  I'm quite glad Lysh has started sharing their music with the public and I expect you'll be hearing more from them in the future!  Add in to the mix one of the most attentive and supportive audiences I've ever played for and what you get is an extra special evening!  Thank you so much to all the people who came out on Thursday, you're super amazing!!!!

Left to Right (Alyshia Chabot [Lysh Music], Kaeli Dane, Me)

I feel extremely lucky to have been part of these 3 fantastic events and I'm happy to see so much love and support for women in Regina!  Now, if anyone happens to put on a guys night out, I'd be eager to come watch - after all, there were men in the audience of each show supporting us ladies (thank you for that)!

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