What A Year

Hey there,

Happy New Year

I know it’s been a while. I’ve been taking a long break from social media in general. I needed more time to tackle some pretty challenging tasks. Hope everyone is doing ok.

The second half of 2020 went by fast

From June to mid-September, I took part in another acting workshop with the Santa Monica Playhouse. This time online instead of onstage. I helped write a play, then, for weeks, rehearsed and tried to film my lines as an archeologist from the future.

This would turn out to be harder than expected. First, when I signed up I had no idea my life would be changing drastically in a few months. Then, with my family working and/or learning from home, our 2-bedroom apartment wasn’t exactly a quiet environment. Plus, it was so blazing hot in the summer, under those lights I set up in the living room, make-up would melt on my face. Worst were the days when there were fires nearby. I couldn’t open any windows because of the smoke. Those were the only days I truly felt locked-up.

Aside from that, it was a pleasure learning and creating with that group of friends, as always, and I hope to do it again soon under different circumstances. In the end, I was able to film all my speaking parts and one of two songs I wanted to include. I gave up on the other one, but got some experience recording myself, which means as soon as I get my new studio set up I might start sharing short clips. We’ll see.

September 4th I watched, from across the world, a full orchestra in Macedonia record strings for Alnilam’s new EP Under the Sun. In the past we’ve recorded a string quartet in L.A. That was more complicated this time, so in a way I kind of lucked out.

I have to admit I teared up when I first heard those 20 amazing musicians playing composer Sandro Morales Santoro‘s string arrangements. That about defines “unforgettable” for me.

Here are a couple of clips I took with my phone…

Early October, we finally recorded my vocals at Arimaka, Manu Jimenez‘s studio in Los Feliz, CA. We are super happy and excited with the results. I was in the middle of packing by then (more on that later) and it was fortunate we got what we needed in just a few days.

New EP update

I’m pleased to report that all instruments have been recorded. Only Daniel Wright‘s back vocals are left. We are definitely on the homestretch now, thanks for your patience. A special thanks to my crowdfunding Backers, without them this wouldn’t have been possible.

As some of you know, Under the Sun has been years in the making. What was an already lengthy process has been delayed by a variety of circumstances, many beyond our control. We’ve kept it moving forward through change and unpredictability: Dan became a dad for the first time, fires, riots, lockdowns, a global pandemic, and an international relocation. The puzzle is almost complete. More than ever, I’m really looking forward to sharing these songs.

A place to call my own

Somewhere in the middle of all this I left California. A long-term dream came true unexpectedly, much sooner than I ever thought it could. It was incredibly stressful, but somehow we made it to Costa Rica, cats and all. I’ve moved countless times within cities, and across the US, more than enough times to deeply dread one more, but making an overseas jump after all these years was even tougher. Hope to never move again.

It was well worth it though. These days I wake up to an orchestra of birds, and the rumble of tractors in the fields. I listen gratefully, and watch this new familiar world closely. I tread carefully. This land is still wild. Snakes and coyotes come out at night. So do the constellations, as clear and bright as I remember them. I was standing under a giant Wolf Moon, a few nights ago, thinking my life has come full circle. I finally have a place to plant my garden.

We’ve adopted a third cat, she came with the new house. Her name is Lilly.

And I think I’ve found a place to call my own.” Genesis

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