I Dreamt About Taylor Swift Last Night

So I woke up this morning having had a very long dream that I wrote six songs with Taylor Swift for her new album–which of course I didn’t. What was so interesting was that within the dream while I was working with her, I was making sure I was mentally recording the ideas; I was putting them on my iPhone in my dream. As soon as I woke up I was able to record them on my iPhone for real! In the dream everyone loved these songs!!! What does the dream mean?

lucid-dreaming-music

The psychological meaning of dreaming about music is that it’s the opposite of chaos. Music stands for harmony and order. Musical dreams almost always have a positive connotation. Ironically, one song I wrote in my dream is called “Crisis”!  Another one is called “Wonder”. An old legend says that angels can send you messages in your dreams…hmmmm that feels nice and warm. I welcome all angels. 

I wonder if Taylor Swift also dreamt of me last night?

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Racing Through The Snow

snowWinter is often seen as down-time, a season to lie low and rejuvenate while waiting for warm weather to return. But as the cold comes and the year turns, I am feeling invigorated and living for new challenges.

One thing I’m concentrating on is the promotion of my one-woman musical production THE PASS. As 2018 is the 40th anniversary of the release of my and Dean Friedman’s hit song, “Lucky Stars”, I’m especially eager to bring THE PASS to London next fall. So I’m actively seeking a theater and professional representation. Can’t wait to cross The Pond again–I lived in the UK for four years and have nothing but stellar memories.

I’m also planning on how to feature songs in my music catalog, administered by BMG, on film and TV. We all know how just the right song adds spice to a drama or enhances the best moment in a love story. So I’m eager to lend my voice, and the voice of artists I represent such as Nicole Berke, to exciting new productions.

Another endeavor I’m undertaking is the formation of a special book marketing division for my PR company, KeyMedia Public Relations. I’m designing a very affordable package with first-time struggling writers in mind, to get their manuscripts into agents’ hands and READ and PUBLISHED in the quickest, most efficient way possible. In mulling over names, I’m leaning towards “Push The Book”–reflecting the fun, no-frills but high-quality aspect of this project.

So bears may hibernate and geese may fly south, but there’s no rest for this weary but inspired businesswoman/singer/songwriter and all-around “athlete” this December!

DO IT MYSELF (DIM) The Music Business & Streaming Music

I went indie in 1997. After two hit records as a vocalist and two publishing deals that went south because both times my publisher left the company mid-contract, it was time to DIM. (Do It Myself) dim3 It was a big learning process. And now indie artists are flourishing! They get themselves started and then a major comes along and snaps them up.  And that also means other creatives are doing well too. We can’t do it ourselves. We need CD designs, PR, marketing, etc., indie small creative businesses are depending on one another. I recently hired someone to help with my YouTube channel for THE PASS.  I hired a small film company to film the first run through of the project. We are all supporting one another.

There has been moaning about how bad the music business has been, there’s no money being made, the internet has ruined the value of music and  I say -music has huge value – even more now than ever before. It is everywhere. That is why there are so many music videos on YouTube and Vimeo and why Google, Apple and Amazon have made millions from music streaming! There are more and more streaming options too.  So many other new streaming apps are hitting the market all the time. Dozens. And the big labels are catching up too.

Billboard headline: Sony Music Posts Nearly $1 Billion in Quarterly Revenue as Streaming Booms

The internet is still kind of new (1994  in my world”worldwide web”) and things –  just had to settle in. Change can be upsetting and/or uplifting.  Skeptics, pessimists, optimists, all out shouting one another in today’s media driven world.

Music is music. Here’s my newest release, both my CD”s on one CD! TWO

cropped-denisemarsatwo.png

Pinpointing My Dream

Dream

After basking in the afterglow of my first performance of THE PASS, my one woman show including original songs, I now say: What’s Next? A dream is a pure thing, beautiful and nebulous as a cloud, filled with light. But to successfully mount a show a dream is unfortunately not enough. I have a vision; I need a plan. To an artist, making the vision concrete can be the hardest part. Luckily, over the years I have formed and developed my own production company, and have handled the careers of indie musicians (and other artists) whose work I respect. Now is the time to apply the same concentration to my own show that I’ve applied to dozens of other careers.

So, today, I have been starting the submission for a new musical festival, here in NYC.  If we get it, it will help with the funding needed to take THE PASS to the next level and around the country, hopefully even around the world. Oh dare I dream that big? Why not!! So this type of working on a dream,  involves dealing with all the tedious parts of an application such as finding documents and filling out information fields–the exact opposite of bursting into song. Setting my sights on the goal, the end results of entertaining people for a 90 minutes of songs and stories,  I am doing it, while running my PR/Production company as well! That is also a part of me, helping others! www.keymediapublicreations.com

I can break through into a life that is better and where I can be my best self–the expressive songstress me. I can see myself traveling to cities and sharing THE PASS.

It’s right there…

AFTER GLOW

DeniseMarsaThePassWorkshop_9_28_17

On Thursday 9/28 at 7 pm I unleashed for the first time The Pass, to an audience of 20 privately invited guests. It was held in the home of my director Gretchen Cryer. The performance was an extremely rewarding experience for me on many levels as I had worked so very hard to prepare for this event. I’d been working with a vocal coach, (Tania Travers) rehearsing long hours with my accompanist, Marta Sanchez, and with my director, as well as tweaking the script a lot before the show. The response was overwhelmingly positive.

Gretchen Cryer intro The Pass 9_28_17

I had told myself before I started the show that after I was done with my last final word of the script and had sung my last note if I asked myself “why did I do this?” I wouldn’t perform again. My first visceral response, I can’t wait to do it again!, was my Geiger counter–I WILL keep on performing the Pass, hopefully, many times. Once it was completed I was 100% ready to do it again. Now I am fine tuning all details, making the show even more special and full of impact.

The Pass coincided with the solemn time of Yom Kippur; I didn’t want to do any social media until Monday, after the High Holidays. Monday morning I was confronted with the dire news about the Las Vegas shooting. This tragedy did eclipse a lot of my inner triumph. What really affected me was that it was during a music event–and music to me is about what saves us, what gets us through the tough times. Here this 64-year-old man murders, destroys, at a music event–this stopped me cold in my tracks. It brings up the art of promotion; when is it appropriate to promote yourself or when should you concentrate on the tone brought about by a devastating interruption?

It’s Tuesday now, as we all try to swallow the facts about the Las Vegas shootings. Then more bad news…As a great performer, Tom Petty, leaves us, we realize how important every minute is.  Friends attended his Hollywood Bowl performance last week; they said he was amazing.  My song In a Matter of Moments is playing in my head.  Still we must face that life just keeps going on, no matter what. You’ve gotta find the strength, the reasons to do what you do, to love what you do, to love the people you love and support and find a purpose even when things seem so insane. So my afterglow was dimmed; but there will be more afterglows to follow.

DeniseMarsaThePassWorkshop_9_28_17_2

Mother Earth is Crying Out! How Can We Help?

mother earth 2We have all witnessed, either in person or through social media, the recent devastation brought about by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. I was moved on many levels: as an American, as a citizen of the world and as a musician. With dramatic climate changes bringing about ever-more catastrophic weather events, I know we all agree nature must at last be soothed and celebrated, not exploited.

In 1997 when I was recording my debut album SELF, The Land Had A Dream was a brand new song that I wanted to include last minute. I received a lot of comments and questions relating to my writing about the environment–such as, “what do you mean the land had a dream? how does the sky have a dream?'” etc. I was really convinced that THE LAND HAD A DREAM was the song to feature when we discussed a music video to promote the album. There was push back however I stood my ground (no pun intended) and we made the video. We had great support from many and to this day, I realize what a big task we took on! Always up for a challenge, we made it work!

At the time there weren’t a lot of pop songs based around environmental themes. I feel the song continues to be relevant even more so today as we all join together to share our messages of concern and the need for change. Check out the quote at the end of the video we added in – during post production.

Today I hereby pledge the following:

  1. All money coming from downloads of the track THE LAND HAD A DREAM between September 13, 2017 and September 13, 2018 will be donated to Hand in Hand.
  2. If you cover the song ( guitar, piano, acapella) and put a video up on YouTube I will donate $25 to Hand in Hand at the end of the year for each video that is created. Please be sure to let us know when you post your video! keymediagroupnyc(at)gmail.com

https://handinhand2017.com/

To download THE LAND HAD A DREAM link

Denise Marsa-The Land Had A Dream From The Cd Self

Basic Chords: B E A D Cm D# G# G
Lyrics: 

 

THE LAND HAD A DREAM Words and Music:  Denise Marsa

Man had a dream without illusions

Washed up in rivers and lakes of concrete and stone

When I see your face, I’m closer to home

Outside our shelter it feels so alone

 

What about the land the land had a dream

What about the sky the sky had a dream

What about the trees the trees had a dream

What about the sun the sun had a dream

 

What is a prayer without confusion

Simple is sometimes the best we can do

First there was one followed by two

Three maybe four we crowd our lives with ourselves

 

What about the land the land had a dream

What about the sky the sky had a dream

What about the moon the moon had a dream

What about the sea the sea had a dream

 

Man had a dream without illusions

Washed up in rivers and lakes of concrete and stone

 

What about the land the land had a dream

What about the sky the sky had a dream

What about the trees the trees had a dream

What about the sun the sun had a dream

© 1997  Marsa Music/ASCAP

 

 

Reigning it in: Staging a Production

Tiger

As a musical performer I’ve been told I often use sweeping and dramatic gestures and move about a lot on stage. What I’m learning now is that being a singer with a band is a lot different than doing a one-woman show. As I rehearse my show THE PASS it’s been brought to my attention by my director, Gretchen Cryer, that I need to stand still–at least once in a while! During my rehearsal yesterday I was pacing around the stage, thinking and moving spontaneously as I would in life. But this can be distracting for an audience, even off-putting. I’ve been advised to block out all my moves so that when I speak and sing I will be standing in pre-arranged places–no more wandering around! I’m a free spirit who enjoys making each performance different; I even sing my songs with slight variations every time, to keep them fresh. It’s just the way I roll.

However, for THE PASS, the first run-through, which is September 28th, is an invitation-only performance and will be trying out a new style: one of stillness. I will perform my anecdotes and sing my songs according to a pattern that I’ll have pre-determined, as much as it is within my power to do so. Varying my act a bit, by tweaking the way I usually perform, will be a big challenge. But it will also keep me aware of both myself and the audience in a fresh and exciting new way.

I am thrilled (and nervous) to be preparing for my first showing of THE PASS and will be sure to let you know how it goes.

BE YOURSELF – INDIVIDUALISM IS THE NEW TREND

chants-field-mirror-4-by-alex-baker-photographyFor several decades now, since the highly individualistic 60’s, people seem to have gravitated more to group dynamics than to self-expression. Until recently that is. With the election of Trump, and with corporate politics being constantly questioned, people are again realizing the value of forming their own opinions, instead of having their ideas dictated to them via peer pressure.

Too often we put ourselves into boxes and then stick labels on them, so we are stuck with whatever judgment or perceptions these labels have generated.  In time we may need to get out! Staying fluid, we may come off as wishy-washy. Is there a way to keep your opinions fluid and on a personal level? Leaving the generalizations and stereo types aside and hence allowing more diversity in our lives.

My show, THE PASS, is very much an individual journey. I have always seen the value of following my own path – listening to my own voice even when there were others doing everything they could to convince me otherwise – was often a challenge especially when I first got started. I titled my first CD SELF and the front panel (a sticker made from Mylar on which we printed only the word SELF and inserted into the package; we went to great lengths to find these!) acts as a mirror when people pick it up.  Self-awareness when you pick up my music was the intention.

SELF Denise Marsa

Be an individual, stand out from the crowd and listen to your own voice. That way you’ll always be sure to be heard.

FLIRTING WITH THE FLIRTS

The early 80’s was a frivolous time; I was dividing life between NYC and London. Before I went to London, I was asked to sing on two records for The Flirts, who were then a big dance/disco project masterminded by Bobby Orlando. Orlando did try to sign me but I was already on my way to London to sign a Warner Brother’s deal. He had a formula for success; he mimicked hit records and he hired different singers to perform at the recording sessions. I did a buy-out for HELPLESS (YOU TOOK MY LOVE) and MAKING TIME–on which Belinda Carlisle sings backup. (Buy-out means a negotiated rate and no royalties. This was a non-union session.) Turns out HELPLESS rose to the top of the charts. Initially, the group was made up of models and performers-seven or eight of them–who impersonated a group. Now with millions of views on youtube for HELPLESS I want to set the record straight–it’s my voice!

Larga Vida el Paso – Meet Marta Sanchez

After months of searching, I am happy to say I have found a great pianist Marta Sanchez to help me launch my show THE PASS. Marta is from Madrid, Spain and is currently living in Brooklyn.  She has an impressive background with degrees in both classical and jazz composition. Marta has toured the US, Europe, South and Central America and, among her many accomplishments, she was awarded MacDowell Fellowship in 2017.

I’m particularly engaged by the energy and commitment she brings to my songs. Rhythm has always been a big part of my composing and I have felt that through the years my recordings have not always reflected that ingredient. I like what she brings to the music!

You can check out Marta’s website at: www.martasanchezmusic.com