Tuesday, April 28, 2009

heatherlynmusic.com - What's in the name?

We ‘ve transitioned Heatherlyn.org to heatherlynmusic.com for a number of reasons, including that our actual legal business name is “Heatherlyn Music” and our myspace URL is heatherlynmusic. So there’s simply more continuity here and in my mind, it sounds a bit cooler too. ;D

But this modification made me think about the two words together…What does "Heatherlyn Music" mean? Not just that it’s Heatherlyn’s music, meaning poetry and melodies I’ve written; not just as a brand name cause it happens to be my name, but what is
music that's “heatherlyn” ?

Names have always been important to me. I’ve always been interested in their origin and meaning. There are a few different meanings I’ve come across for my name, but the simplest meaning of “Heather” alone is “flowering”. Maybe you’ve seen the flower. It’s similar to baby’s breath, but with a slight purple or bright pink color. One of my favorite countries, Ireland, is known for its fields of heather.

So…Flowering: I do want the spirit of Heatherlyn Music to be about valuing and celebrating the simple, natural beauty in life. Sometimes we need a song to remember the abundance we have so close to us in these free and effortless gifts that are so easy to forget.

“Lyn” means “flowing river.” This makes me think of those traditional tunes like “Down by the Riverside” and others that illustrate a vibrantly flowing river, fresh water that is available to nourish all that surrounds it: the earth, the flowers, trees and ALL people. The river does not discriminate. It freely flows.

So…Flowering, Flowing River: We may feel the challenges of these times and the hardships many face in the world are like stagnant waters and barren lands. We hope Heatherlyn Music will be refreshing, an endlessly blossoming flow of creativity, inspiring us all to be life-givers, peacemakers, justice-doers, kindness-lovers, care-takers for each other and the earth.

So when you hear “Heatherlyn Music”, we hope you won’t only think of the woman, the songs, or the voice of Heatherlyn, but we hope you’ll also imagine how you, your gift and your voice for all your days can continually stream hope and beauty as a life-giving river to the whole wide world.

now at www.heatherlynmusic.com

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Bliss and Sweat ~ a day in the life of heatherlyn music

Yesterday was my first day officially as a full-time (meaning every moment of my waking hours...and even some of my dreaming), self-sustaining, independent singer/song-artist. Many have asked what I'm up to....


There are daily practices I’ve discovered I need to nurture my inner artist, be ready for inspiration and simply BE an artist. These practices include daily writing, healthy balanced eating, physical activity and creativity.

Daily writing: I definitely write more than once many days, but EVERY morning, the very first thing I do is put pen to paper. I have no guidelines or expectations from this. I write whatever comes to mind and write freely until I fill at least three long-hand pages. For me this is like morning meditation. Often it clears my head and even helps me prioritize the day.

Eating well: This regularly includes some kind of small culinary adventure. We eat pretty simply and close to the earth in our house. Fresh veggies and fruit, whole grains, lentils or beans, homegrown herbs and spices are our basic staples and I find a different way for us to enjoy them regularly. This actually doesn’t take as much time as it seems.

Physical activity: Daily exercise may include a brisk walk or dancing to Michael Franti in my living room. I’ve learned I must do this to have energy, clarity and focus. I have had an underactive thyroid since my teen years so these two practices are vital to a healthy being.

Creativity: I need to do something at least weekly that is playful like coloring, splashing watercolors, dancing, viewing an art display, a nature walk, listening to a live performer….

I’m practicing guitars, keys, percussion, and vocals to keep improving my skills. There are many songs that I have already crafted that I need to hone and make better, always reviewing old and new material and being sure it’s prepared or ready to be shared in a fresh way. I’m practicing to a metronome to keep improving my sense of rhythm and solidly execute each strum.

I review notebooks in which I’ve scribbled lines of poetry or song ideas and I pick one to expand upon. A quick Wikipedia review of a topic along with some of my own scribbly brainstorming on a theme births carefully crafted words, which lay the foundation for a brand new tune.

Some days I'm also recording, but not lately...

Time and thought is spent preparing for various events. Many shows have a slight variation one to the next depending on the theme or audience.
Presentation pieces related to a particular issue of justice necessitate that I do basic research, keep myself informed, and write out thoughts that connect the music to a particular issue or organization.

Getting Down to Business
We are our own manager, booking agents, promotions, etc. So we do all that work of making calls, following up, booking shows, scheduling meetings to prep for a particular event. Then we manage all the details and promotions for each event with each corresponding contact. Networking over coffee, the phone, online, exploring and developing ideas and discovering possibilities for partnership are all parts of a day in the life for Heatherlyn Music.
[press kits, sending materials, cdbaby, facebook, myspace, web updates, blog, media, editing, equipment, maps/directions, composing emails and proposals….]

Time is spent writing updates like this for you the friends and fans that we depend on and we hope you’ll join us on this fantastic adventure of bliss and sweat.