Email Paul Brantley. Email Elia. Re-schedule with Sally Cade and Amelia. Schedule with Sally Cade and Amelia in the first place. Record Rabid Dog for Ben. Have Noriko over for dinner to discuss piano parts. Email Kate and Graham back. Call Sally Cade at 1pm to discuss kickstarter text. Call mom about how her test went. Rehearse Emptying Rooms and New York City for Alex’s fundraiser. Record Señor Magnifico chorus part for Ben to hear. Decide if a choir is way too complicated. Compose list for 1pm phone call with Sally Cade. What is my stop? Myrtle-Willoughby. Pick up coconut water for Jill. Can’t wait to tell Jill about everything that’s been going on. Text Graham back. Figure Señor Magnifico out for god’s sake. What the hell am I going to do about Goddamn Day, what a frickin mess. Get to Frankie at 3, get to Sally Cade at 12:30. Will I make it on time? At Queensboro Plaza, going to 8th st then walking west for 2 avenues… I don’t think so. It’s okay. Email Sunder back, email Mrs. Collins, email Richard, email Anita, call Dad and tell him I’ll be done rehearsal at 3pm December 23rd and will fly home right after. Call Julia, haven’t talked to her in a while. Let Ben know about my Zeroes idea. Put an update on the website for god’s sake put an update on the website.
So many details. The loose ends are coming in all shapes and sizes without sign that they’ll stop before December 11th, well, probably not even then. Two months ago I was having coffee with my friend Amelia. Amelia is not only a brilliant videographer and visionary, but she is also an extraordinary friend. She listens and responds. It’s funny that thats so hard to find sometimes. I won’t go into the details of our conversation, but, the next morning I woke up with one thought in my mind: It’s time to find a more permanent place for my music. It’s time to gather, record and share. I guess thats what John O’Donohue means by having ‘a real conversation’ - a conversation that makes you truly reconsider where you stand in your life, opinions and desires. Thanks Amelia. And also, how COULD you, Amelia? I am more stressed out today than I have been in a good long while.
I also woke that morning having made the stubborn decision that I would complete this project by the close of 2015. Deadlines are good, right? Ayayay. So. Making that decision in itself was an enormous step forward. The next thing to do was to find help. There were a few essential roles to fill in order to make manifest the vision that was quickly forming in my mind. The first was an Executive Producer. I knew immediately who I would ask, nay, beg, to take on my project.
That person was Sally Cade Holmes. Sally Cade and I have know each other since 2002 when I met her at tennis practice before school started my Sophomore year of high school in Greenville, South Carolina. She was an incoming freshman, and upon meeting her, I knew immediately that I wanted to be her friend. First of all, she was a theatre girl. Hooray! But she was also just so cool, and friendly. Cool and friendly at the same time??? I didn’t know that existed in high school, so naturally I was excited. I thought perhaps a friendship was a pipe dream, but oh happy day, we both ended up quitting the team that season. Her because of Peter Pan at the Greenville Children’s Theatre and me for The Man Who Came to Dinner at our high school theatre. Admittedly, her exit from the tennis team was much more graceful and honest than my own. As I look back on it now, the clunky people pleaser from that time still exists in me, and the graceful diplomat still exists in Sally Cade. I was so excited when she auditioned for the spring musical - we’d do 3 of these together before I graduated in 2005.
Little did I know that our friendship and shared experiences would continue when we’d spend 3 more years in school together at the University of Evansville and even live in the same disgusting, black-mold-growing, mouse infested, truly-feels-like-home-away-from-home, $150 a month house my senior year and her junior year. Even littler did I know that 6 and a half years after leaving that house (lovingly known as Memphis- Memphis shoutout!), we would once again reunite in collaboration, this time with a vision unlike anything we’d considered before. After leaving undergrad, Sally Cade happened to take an interest in producing, and it was no surpriseto me when her career began to take off. Needless to say, Sally Cade is an old friend, a good friend, a killer producer, and oh my god do I feel lucky that she said yes.
The next position that needed to be filled was that of Musical Producer. After rolling names, personalities, and work habits over and over in my mind, I finally bounced Ben Quinn’s name off of Sally Cade. Ben attended Evansville with us, he even lived in Memphis at one time (Memphis shoutout!). While we didn’t overlap for long, he left a lasting impression on me, as he is not only a brilliant musician and collaborator, but also a genuinely kind and generous person. At Sally Cade’s suggestion, I lured Ben to my apartment with the promise of Indian food and an innocent ‘help-me-with-a-couple-things-‘ plea. And as expected, he was a perfect match, and hooray, we had our musical producer. Since that time, Ben and I have been meeting regularly. His main job consists of wrangling my scattered ideas and putting them into something understandable and accessible for everyone else. It has been an extraordinary and eye-opening experience to collaborate so closely with another musician. I don’t think I’ll ever go back.
After that, there have come many more essential pieces to this widening puzzle. But thats for another day. It took me long enough to publish this blog post as it is.