Tuesday, November 12, 2019

November 4th 2019
I had a conversation with someone I hadn’t seen in over a year the other day.

“you look happier now”

For the hours following our conversation I couldn’t quite get those words out of my head. It caught me by surprise because I didn’t even realise it: I am happy. I may not have been before, and I know I will not be forever. So I’m enjoying it today, because fearing that it wouldn’t last would take the happiness away.

Lately I’ve been looking at life a little differently. I stopped looking at my work schedule like it was a puzzle I needed to fill every gap up with. The world never stops, and if I kept going along with it I’ll probably loose my mind. Taking a break is a scary thing. We’re conditioned to boast about how busy we are, encouraged to keep going and going and going. Having to give a reason on a leave application is so daunting to me that sometimes I’d rather work than to ask for some time off. I finally got the courage to (or maybe I finally got too mentally exhausted) and cut back on my working hours. It's crazy how much a little extra free time in a week can do. 

I started journalling again, on paper because I just can't quite catch on with digital journaling quite yet.
The plants in the garden aren't wilting anymore, and it makes me happy to see them growing. (The other day, we harvested a bunch of mulberries!)
I have breakfast with my grandmother more often now; even though she would question my life decisions every time we sit down over a cup of Milo in the morning.
I’m trying to write again. Trying not think so much about who is reading this, and what you might think.
My mind is full of lyrics I hadn’t written down, and right now I’m just sorting through the mess of ideas.
I made it home in time for dinner with my family.
It’s the little things that make everything feel more whole, and I guess I found it, and then got lost in everything, and am now finding it again.

It seems happiness is something we don’t really prioritise. We’re always looking toward the next thing, getting from one place to another, not really able to be happy with where we are. Sometimes we put our happiness in material things we don’t have. We’re comfortably uncomfortable with the way things are, knowing that it needs to change but not really willing to make a change.

The biggest thing I realised is that I didn’t let myself feel happy because of the fear that it might slip through my fingers, worried I might get too comfortable here, but I'm learning to let it go and just be here in this moment.

Anyway, that's my little journal entry/thoughts on happiness. Thanks for reading <3 

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Album launch, radio charts, and trying not to freak out


“If things start happening, don’t worry, don’t stew, 
just go right along and you’ll start happening too.” 
-- Dr Seuss

March 8th 2019
There are no cherry blossoms here in Malaysia, but the sun has been shining way too much that it almost seems as though it brought thunderstorms as a side effect. The flowers on the trees; pink, yellow and white have been making my drive to work and back a little more mesmerising. I wish I could just stand by the trees and stare in awe of the colour and calmness it brings. 
This is me jumping out of another post I never published. I wrote so many journal entries but couldn’t bring myself to put them on here for some reason. So here’s one of quite a number of posts that have been sitting comfortably in my draft notes finally seeing the light of the day. You’ll be seeing a lot of these in the coming future.

Hi. I’m sorry for disappearing. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t have noticed- and I don’t mean it in a rude way- its just that there’s so much going on all the time, sometimes I feel like there’s no need for me to add to any of it. Wouldn’t you feel like staying in the quiet for a little while too sometimes? 
It has been an insanely crazy, busy and exciting few months. It’s been such a rush, and I still don’t know how to wrap my head around it all. Today is the first time in a very long time I have absolutely nothing to do but breathe, and let it sink in.

I think I feel happy.
No, in this very moment all I feel is happy. 
(and maybe a little tired)


This year I went to China, did TV and radio interviews, had an album launch, a song placed NUMBER ONE on She Wolf Radio, and top 10 in a few other charts (!!!), amongst many exciting things. I don’t think I will ever get used to media interviews, I have become significantly less panicky though, but it still always freaks me out. I got to do a couple on my own and a few with the pH artists, and (I know I say it a lot) but it doesn’t feel real. April came in such a rush, and now its May. Sometimes- no most of the time, I feel like I’m living in 2018 still. Reminiscing on the carefree summer evenings spent in Nashville. Now, for some reason even more so than ever. Almost every day this week while driving to work I see a car or a motorcycle with the licence plate: ‘BNA’ (Nashville’s airport abbreviation) and I can’t help but wish I were there. 


I turned 23 this February, and we were preparing for a radio interview when everyone managed to successfully surprise me for the first time ever. To be honest I don’t really like surprises, so I try to be on guard and look out for any signs it might be happening. And every single time I managed to figure it out, except for this time. I don’t know, maybe 23 is growing on me. I feel different, but I still feel the same. Happy and sad, and still a lot anxious about a lot of things, but its all okay. It really is. Learning to stay calm through chaos and accepting that everything happens for a reason. Learning to enjoy the peace when it comes- not worrying about how, or why it is here, or when it will be gone. Or when it will be coming back. Maybe its acceptance, maybe I’m learning how to understand my feelings and myself as well as the people around me a little more.

We had an album launch party, and that was really crazy. I felt super nervous, at the same time tried my best to enjoy the moment. I don't think there was much excitement but more nerves and anxiety. I was worried about the turnout, if we booked a place too big, and a million and one other things. Everything went pretty much better than I could've expected, and I'm so thankful for everyone's support. I can't believe my album's out!

Thank you so, so much for supporting me and my music <3 

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Going to China (!!!)

January 17th 2019 
(I know it is almost June, but I don't know what took me so long to actually post all these blog posts up. Sorry about that! This, and the few posts coming up have been very comfortably sitting in my draft folder for half the year.)

It was a whirlwind of an adventure, going to China. Thursday morning, January 11th I rushed to the airport. I didn’t get to say goodbye to my grandparents because they went out and I’m not sure if my grandma knew where I was going.
With a suitcase full of clothes and my guitar as my carry-on, I met the rest of the team at the airport.

I didn’t know what China was going to be like. I had no idea what performing there was going to be like either. In fact, I didn’t even know I was going to China. I thought it was all plans and nothing was decided yet. Until the press conference it hit me “oh it’s actually really happening.”

It was a bit of a culture shock for me at first. Nanning was cold and gloomy this time of year, and everything was covered in a layer of dust. There were electric bikes moving in every direction, and the smell of meat (I don’t know what kind) cooking made me feel a little sick. And even though I am Chinese, I really wasn’t used to eating so much Chinese food. I could speak the language but I couldn’t read it. We went to a bubble tea shop and the menu was a vast array of gibberish. After getting help from the rest with translating the menu, I decided on tea. Without the bubbles (or boba as some of you might call it)- which kind of defeated the purpose of going to a bubble tea shop. 

We rehearsed in an underground rehearsal space with the artists from China. There was a lot of cigarette smoke and dust, but the excitement of it all made it okay. We played a music festival together the next day and that was a lot of fun. It was cold and I was shivering so bad I couldn’t hold the mic steady. This was also the first time I performed in Chinese, and without my guitar. Maybe I was shaking because of the nerves too. I looked out and there were so many people. It was pretty exhilarating. 

I learnt a lot that week, and had a really great time. I realised that there’s never really anything happening “by chance”. Everything is carefully planned and involves a lot of thought and hard work, not just from one person but from a group of people collectively. I am paraphrasing something a songwriter once said in a podcast: “Sometimes you’ve just got to get your foot in the door for things to happen”And it feels so weird when that’s happening. Seemed like we pushed it open instead, and maybe that’s what its like. I felt a little uncomfortable getting treated like we were special. Or am I just too comfortable and used to this semi-invisibility? Some moments where it was like like “Whoah, this is actually happening!”, and other times I felt very undeserving of it.


We also did a few tapings for a Chinese New Year program to be aired on Nanning TV as well as on Astro here in Malaysia. We had a rehearsal in the morning, one of the songs with about 20 dancers dancing as we sang. It was wild. We all went full-on glamour mode for the shoot, and after hair and makeup I barely even recognised myself.

We were asked to think about how we wanted the world to see us. To create a sort of “persona” that could possibly become something people would like to follow and know more about. I realised how much of a rebel I actually am- in a sense that I can’t bring myself to do anything that isn’t me or doesn’t feel right. I feel compelled to do the opposite when I have to do something I don’t want to do and I apologise for that. I see social media as an extension of who I am, and not me trying to be like someone else. It is so easy to change the way you look in a picture nowadays. There’s a setting to change the shape of your chin, to make you look slimmer, your eyes look bigger, and it goes on. It’s to tempting to just tune everything to the way you’d want yourself to look like. I made the decision not to do that to the pictures I take. It’s not that I’ve fully accepted and embraced my features, but maybe this way I will learn to. 



I guess I didn’t realise how big a deal all this was, and I didn’t really know how to feel about it until I got back to Malaysia and saw us on TV. Only then did it all sink in. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this adventure with this bunch of awesome people. 

Thursday, February 28, 2019

(no title)


I’ve been wanting to write this for a while now. All my thoughts filling up and spilling over. It still feels strange. Everything does. The longer I am back, the further away I feel from Nashville. All these words sitting in a virtual draft box, collecting virtual dust. Its almost March and I started writing this in December.
What else do I say when someone asks in a casual conversation “So how was living in Nashville?!” except for “It was great, and I had a lot of fun!” 
Maybe I’ve been saying those exact words each time someone asks, but I don’t know how else to react. How do I say that I had a really great time, the best time actually. Travelling was as life-changing as people said it would be. A part of me wished I could've stayed a little longer. And I can’t help wondering what could’ve been if I actually did. 
I went from playing about four to five shows a week and writing every other day to not knowing when my next show is going to be, and writing by myself again but only occasionally. I started working at a new place, hence not posting or writing much (sorry). It has been good so far though. I am happy that I get to do what I enjoy as work. I’m trying very hard not to let work swallow me like it did before. Because I enjoy doing it, its easy to get caught up and so I have to consciously not let it take up all of my time so that I would still have time in the day for family and for music. 
As more and more days go by, I find myself holding on tighter and tighter, trying very hard not to loose all that I’ve learnt and who I have become. At the start of last year, I made a list of all the things I wanted to achieve if I had the chance. I wrote it on a little piece of paper and pinned it up over my desk as a reminder to work harder and to look foward: 



I'm so happy to say that in 2018 I managed to achieve all that I had set out to do. 
It was such a crazy, and wonderful adventure, and in January this year everything just went full-speed. I'm learning that there's so much you can do if you just go out there and try.

Thank you for reading this, and for your tremendous support. Will write more soon! 

Friday, December 14, 2018

My album is out!





My album is out! But my laptop still doesn't work, so I'm copying and pasting this from various places I've written on here and there, and trying to piece it all into a cohesive piece. (If only making sense of emotion were this simple)
Josh and Chris, who play violin and bass in Midnight In Paris recorded the song with me a while back, but we ended up not releasing that version. I’m so glad you get to hear them in this version that we put out. 
Noqizo shot the album cover (and all these photos you’ve been seeing) out at one of my favourite parks in Kota Kemuning, moments before they cut the grass. We could hear the grass cutters behind us as this photo was taken. I was not (and still am not) used to having photos of myself taken, but Noah did an awesome job making it less scary haha.
My friend Adam and I worked on the album design together. We both drew the designs in the album booklet (we have an album booklet this time!) and he put everything together.
My heart is filled with excitement and gratitude. So much is finally finished, but at the same time this is a beginning, and the work starts now.
Recording this was a lot of fun, and quite an adventure. I had to bring back all the feelings I put away, going back in time while in the studio. I learnt so much, and am still learning. And I’m so grateful to everyone at pH Music for EVERYTHING.
Thank you for listening, and reading all this. And thank you SO much for your support.
(ps: if you’d like a physical copy of the album, let me know! I can mail it to you too, if there isn’t a chance to meet)
I'll try to write more soon! 



Sunday, October 28, 2018

October 27th: Last week in Nashville (for now)


I'm sorry for not writing here as often as I thought I would. It is currently 9:15am and its a beautiful gloomy Saturday here in Nashville. I fly home in two days, and I'm so excited to see my friends and family again. Since coming here I've made so many new friends and many of them have become like family, so it will be sad to be leaving them too.
This journey has been one of the best experiences. Last monday I played one of my favourite shows so far; Song Suffragettes at The Listening Room Cafe. My mom and I used to watch the shows when we were here four years ago and getting to play that same stage four years later with Candi Carpenter, Emma White, Trannie Stevens and Michelle Pereira was a dream come true. And it was an added bonus that we got to wear Halloween costumes on stage. I felt like I experienced so much 'american-ness' that evening alone, and it was awesome. I got to meet so many people after the show and it was quite overwhelming. We got to talk to people and listen to their stories after they've listened to ours. I used to I write my songs in hopes that I'd get to play them at the cafe or restaurant while people talked over them and I'd be comfortable in the background, but this was the complete opposite- and maybe I need to reach for something more like moments like these.
I also got to see my songwritng hero, Jason Isbell at The Ryman Auditorium.

It's not the best picture, but it definitely was one of the best concerts I've been to. 

Did a lot of walking and hiking with a friend from the hostel the other day. We went to Radnor lake again this week and it was so beautiful. The leaves on the trees were turning red and shades of yellow and we looked at them in awe like a little kid would. We saw deer and birds and admired the little purple wildflowers. We watched the bees and the squirrels, and took many pictures. Breathing in the cool autumn air, I felt so grateful to be here and for everything that happened. I don't ever want to not get excited over the little things like these.
Some days (kind of like today) I don't really feel like going out. Nashville doesn't rest, there's always something going on and always something to do, but I am not like Nashville. I can't go for every event and sometimes I regret not going out (like the time I almost went to a show at Bluebird but I forgot to buy tickets ahead of time and ED SHEERAN made a surprise appearance) but quiet days in are nice too. Lately I've been baking a lot and skating a lot too. I guess its because I know I'm going back to KL soon or maybe its just because I'm running out of socializing energy that staying in is so much more attractive to me.

It's been 3 months of sharing a room with random people, 
sitting in the passenger seat where the steering wheel should be, 
writing the month before the day, 
riding a bicycle with a guitar on my back (just don't ride with groceries, its a bad idea), 
and singing and writing songs every other night,
cereal for dinner whenever I wanted. 

Now I'm ready to go home and start a new adventure; of a new job and releasing my album (!!!)

Thank you for reading this, and for supporting me so far- even when I didn't believe in myself. See you again, Nashville. 

And see you soon, Malaysia. 

Sunday, September 23, 2018

my laptop can't start, here's a late update.

September 19th:
Life has been a lot of sunshine and songs,
Pizza and good company,
Learning to co-write, and learning to cook.

Everyone here has taught me so many things than I know how to thank them for. I’m learning how to be braver, and to be more comfortable with myself. That was something I didn’t know was possible. Maybe comes with growing up and accepting. Accepting that there are things can’t all be planned out, and accepting that everything changes all the time. Embracing uncertainty. Life is so much more than the little bubble we put ourselves in, and there this wide open space of possibility that is both incredibly terrifying and exciting.

There’s an ice skating rink 15 minute walk from where I stay and that makes me so incredibly happy even though I can’t afford to go there every day. I had a giant brownie the size of my palm the other day. It took me awhile to finish, so I packed it back. My sugar tolerance has increased tremendously since being here but alcohol still tastes bad to me.

I came here to find myself as much as I came to learn about music.
I’m halfway into this adventure and I feel like I’ve been more of myself than I’ve ever been. As much as I love it here, There are moments when I miss home with an ache that I can’t describe. It’s not a hurting ache, more like a hole right through the middle of me. Emptiness and space. Maybe it’s not really the place that I miss, it’s the people, and the familiarity of home that I miss. I don’t know. But I do know that when I leave Nashville I’m going to want to come back.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Hello again, Nashville. It's been too long.

It has been 27 days since I left home to come to Nashville. It has been an amazing adventure so far. It feels like I’ve been here a long time, but it hasn’t even been that long yet. I’ve been going to to songwriters rounds and open mics a lot, every other night in fact, just listening and learning as much as I can. Sometimes I’d get to perform, and sometimes I’d just listen and take it all in. This town is so full of music it’s crazy and amazing. 

Someone asked me if I came here for school, and I said I didn’t. Then he said something that stuck with me. He said “This town is your school.” and I guess it is. 


On my first night here, I went to watch a writers round with a few other hostel guests. There were so many writers and amazing musicians. There was a guy that was so drunk at the back but even in his intoxicated state, still sang with the people on stage in perfect harmony. 

I attended the advanced songwriting workshop organised by NSAI where I got to share my songs and learn from established songwriters who shared their advice and experiences. It was so inspiring and at the same time quite reassuring because the response to my music have been quite positive. 
I’ve met so many amazing people so far too. I worry too much, and worry that I was going to be all alone here, but I have roommates and friends and it’s been fun. 



My roommate Maddie and I went to Memphis for a day, (she’s impulsive and I’m the opposite, so we complimented each other’s traits, well) we ate the world’s best chocolate hot fudge pie- which is both the worst and best thing to do because on one hand it’s the best and is so delicious, but on the other you know nothing else is going to compare and you can’t drive 3+ hours just to eat it again. 
Went to a karaoke bar for the first time in my life. Realised quickly that bars and karaoke aren’t my thing, let alone both at the same time. 

Met another friend at Bobby’s Idle Hour and we both performed at The Bluebird Cafe and met some really wonderful and kind people there. I’ve been there before and performed there a few times, but it always feels so nice to play there. I’ve been writing in a journal everyday, but I’m a few weeks behind with typing it out and keeping you updated. 


Will write more soon!

Monday, January 8, 2018


I’m writing to you in brief moments of quiet, in between all the chaos that is the first week of the year. This is not where I am right now though, and unfortunately neither is it where I was any time recently. It’s just a picture from what felt like an eternity ago because I don’t really take too many pictures. 
The celebration of the new year came and went by so quickly. There was hardly any time to reflect, or breathe, or let things settle. There’s so much to do, and so many places to be. Bus rides and train rides are now for replying to work messages that seemed to have plagued my phone. 

Last year was a crazy adventure. I made music I didn’t release, and plans that didn’t happen. I had a car to drive, and my own room. But then sometimes cars breakdown in the middle of a highway and sometimes neighbours try to make your life miserable (and sometimes they succeed). I left my job and then came back because even though it takes so much more from me than I can give, I somehow still love doing it.

I learnt a lot about life and friendship, and I’m learning to trust the unpredictability of it all.


Then I met the most wonderful people that made music fun and exciting, and possible again. I went to Kampar for the first time with them, and we even played at some really cool places. Now I associate those places with the memories made, and it holds a special place in my heart. They brought back the optimism and excitement for music that had somehow dwindled, and I’m so grateful.

(picture from Jumuro Music's Facebook page)

I guess maybe last year wasn’t just a crazy adventure, but a really wonderful one too.



Thank you do much for your support so far, I hope you’ve had a good first week of the year! And if it wasn’t so good, I hope brighter days come your way soon. 

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.” 

— Robert Frost

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

24 Years

It’s a song about love. The kind of love that lasts forever and still feels like you’re falling in love for the first time. Its about finding someone who knows you better than you do, and who can finish your sentences and someone you know you’re going to grow old with. I wrote this inspired by my grandparents, at a time when I thought love like that was only real in fairytales and movies. It was in the little things, like holding hands when they thought we weren’t looking or grandma making grandpa’s favourite meal that made me realise that sometimes the little things mean more than just saying those three words. 



Lyrics & Composed by Amrita Soon
Arranged by Bernice Tay & Ian Tee Guitar by Alex Koh Alex The Lion KohDrums by iANTBackup Vocal by Elaine YL
Mixing Engineer: Lee Haw Hua @ Jumuro Music Vocal Director:  Daniel Lee 李吉汉
Producer: iAN TeeMastering: Abraham Tee @ Jumuro Music Recording Studio: 巨木音乐 Jumuro MusicOP: pH Music 指数音乐

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

September


Sometimes you wake up early in the morning to finish writing an email that you couldn’t seem to finish writing, and then you leave the house two hours earlier than you’re supposed to only to find out that plans have been cancelled. Sometimes that happens to you few days in a row and you wonder what you’re even doing. So you draw flowers on the bus ride to work and let the bumps on the road add extra texture to the already jagged lines. 
A Spotify playlist of indie music that you’ve never heard of plays in the background. Weird sounds blaring from your headphones sound like sirens in the distance. You tell yourself you need to stop hiding at your workplace and spend more time working on things that mean a lot to you. To finally face the things that scare you. Like the cloud of unwritten lyrics hanging over your head, getting heavier and heavier as if it’s going to explode and flood your brain with scattered emotions and halfway melodies. It lingers like a shadow and you’re haunted by it everywhere you go. 

You fear you feel too much to write something good enough for someone else’s ears. That fear cripples your creativity and leaves you with even more fragments of songs that may never see the light of day. 
Keep yourself busy you won’t have time to worry a mountain out of a molehill. These conflicting feelings are rare, and only visit every once it a while but they always seem as if they can consume me whole. Lately I haven’t been so afraid of falling. I became used to it, and comfortable with it. It was the flying, and actually being heard and seen that terrified me more. 
Now it’s the end of a long day, and the stagnant fog of melancholy has lifted. It’s as if the sun is shining but it’s midnight. My heart’s pounding with excitement because the pieces are fitting together in imperfect harmony. 

Because nothing is perfect. 
But this is as close as it gets, and it is the best feeling. 



September was a whirlwind of excitement. It's been an insane past few weeks. It’s the 23rd of October and started writing this on the 1st. Every other day was filled with music and my heart could barely contain the happiness. I went from work to the studio or to a performance, and from performance, to work then rehearsals performance and repeat. I had played 11 shows by the end of last month and its a lot more than I usually do. And it was so much fun. Everything went by so quickly that there wasn’t much time to feel tired. There was no slowing down to feel nervous or to doubt myself either. I guess now that I’ve got a bit of free time, all the feelings are rushing in at once. 
One of the highlights was getting to perform at No Black Tie again. The first time I played there I was seventeen and really new to all this. I was also really sick then, so this felt like a really nice do-over. It was an amazing feeling being a part of something, and playing with a band (who are insanely wonderful and talented, by the way) to a room full of people listening to every word. It was night I wouldn’t forget. 
I also got to write two songs for a short film, and recorded instrumentals at the studio for someone to sing over. Writing for other people is different. In a way it seems easier because the idea and direction has already been given to you. In another sense its more difficult because you've got to make the song live up to that expectation. I learnt a lot about writing from a different perspective and writing with a dateline. I've got to admit I drank a few cups of coffee to stay up all night a couple of times to finish those songs. I had a lot of fun with it, and I hope I get the chance to write for someone again. 




We went to Penang over the weekend for a quick getaway and also to play at Kim Haus, Chinahouse and to busk at Hin Pop-Up Market. The crowd was really lovely there, and so were my friends who had to endure about 4 hours of my singing over the weekend. With everything that was going on, I thought it would be fun to vlog this whole adventure. My friends and family helped me film a lot of this too, so watching it back and going through the footage was quite funny. 



I guess I'll end this here before this turns into an october blog as well. (Hopefully the next post won't be a month late.) Thank you so much for reading, and listening, and believing in me when I didn't. Hope you have a great week ahead! 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

An ode to my notebooks

Paper is fragile. It blows away in the wind. 
Crumples, tears and rips at the edges. 
Ink washes away. 
As mighty as the pen might be, water is its kryptonite. 
Yet, is is in these pages that I choose to pour my heart into. 
Paper is fragile, 
but so am I. 


I have been writing songs for nine years. 
It feels strange to say that because nine years is a long time and sometimes I still feel like I don't know what I'm doing. 
It changes with every song. There's always a new way to say something, and always a different way to write a song. When I first started writing, I did it for myself. No one else heard the songs I wrote. It was my little secret. 
Now things are pretty different. And I'm grateful that I get to play them to people. Sometimes they listen and it's the best feeling in the world. I don't know, I guess we all just want to be understood, and you listening to my songs makes me feel like I'm not alone. 
Since I was little, everything I thought about, everything I was feeling, and everything that happened to me, I've written down. Thank you for being a friend, a therapist, a shoulder to cry on. 
And thank you for listening to my music, and for reading my silly little posts like these. 

Friday, June 9, 2017

May


Hi.
Its been over a month since I stopped working at one of my jobs. I'm missing it already, and a part of me can't wait to come back. Since then, I've spent a lot more time at home and with my family and doing the things I love. Its the little things I've missed about being home; like hearing my brother laugh and having dinner with my mom. I've been so focused on just getting through the days before that I hadn't realised the things I was missing.  Its been a while since I had written songs and there were times I thought I'd never be able to write another song again. The songs come in fragments of choruses and verses these days, and I'm trying to piece the puzzles together. Its different, but maybe its not a bad thing.
I've received an overwhelming response of positive messages from my previous posts, and I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your support, encouragement and kindness. Sorry if I haven't replied you yet. There's some light coming through what happened, and I'm a mess of both excitement and nerves thinking about whats going to happen next at the same time not wanting to jinx the possibility of a good thing before it has happened. Will write more soon! 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Starting Over.

Before I start, I’ve got to thank the people who came forward to help me with their professional advice and everyone who sent me such kind words of encouragement. Without you guys I don’t know where I’ll be <3

When people ask me what I've been up to lately, I tell them that I'm working on recording my next single. I say that its almost done, and that I'm really excited about it. 

The only problem is, I've been saying that for the past year. 

So what's really been going on? I'm not sure where to start, because it all became quite a mess quite quickly. I don't normally write things like these but I feel I needed to tell you what I went through, so you won't make the same mistakes I did. 

I wrote a song just before I launched my first EP. It was a song I was proud of, and that I was sure would be on my next album. When it came to recording it, I was told it wouldn't take more that a few months. I met with a producer to see if we could work together. He was nice and had the same goals and ideas I had. He was very excited to record my song, and maybe even an album. I was excited too, because it had been two years since 'Clues'. I was eighteen then, and I felt that my music had grown since. There was so much that I had lived, seen and felt put to music and I couldn't wait to share it with you.


The demo track was done pretty quickly. There was hope and excitement because this song was finally coming to life. There were a few things still that I wanted to change, but we were in the early stages of production and we could fix things along the way. We recorded many takes of vocals but I didn't get to hear what we had recorded, even after a couple of months. The whole song was recorded over a demo instrumental and it took a while to get the instruments to replace the programmed tracks. 

We moved studios a couple of times, each time a different reason to why we left was given. As a few more months went by, things started to slow down. I didn't go back to the studio, and I hadn't heard much from my producer. Then he'd call me and we'd go back to work as if all the time that went by was just a blink of an eye. He didn't tell me why, and I was afraid to ask. I don't know why, but in those months going to the studio, I felt so alone. I held back my tears as I stood in front of the mic, my producer on the other side of the glass. There was an ache in my chest I couldn't describe. I felt as if it was all a mistake and I wanted so badly to give up. 

We eventually finished what we had set out to do after 11 months. But this was not how I had envisioned this whole process to be like. I thought that because he was more experienced and had achieved more success, he knew better. It was my fault too for letting it drag on so long without my voice being heard. By the time I realised it, it was too late. If your'e a singer/songwriter too, or just put in a situation like this, I hope your experience wouldn't be like this. You don't have to go through with something you're not comfortable with. If the terms are against you, don't just accept it. Ask questions. Don't put yourself down because of what someone else says. They may know better, but then again they might not. What you want, and what you believe in is worth something too. I thought I knew all that, and that I'd be able to stand up for myself if the situation arises but I didn't. 

I believe everything happens for a reason. Although I want so badly to drown in an ocean of my regret right now, this had taught me a very valuable lesson.  As much as it hurt, it is forcing me to fight. If this didn't happen, I wouldn't have learnt to stand up for myself and my music. And I wouldn't have learnt to ask for help. I realised I don't have to do this alone, and neither do you. 

Thank you for supporting me all this years, and through this music silence. And thank you for reading what I wanted to say. I am looking forward to start working on my music again! I'm not quite sure how, or where yet but I have a clearer picture of who I am and who I want to be now. 

I'm starting over, and its exciting. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Its 2017.

 

I'm writing this at 2:19 in the morning. I had wanted to write something at the beginning of this new year, but I didn't end up having much to say. I think it could have been the opposite too- I had a lot of things I wanted to say, I just didn't know where to start.

The fact that its 2017 and a new year seems like a good place to start. Optimism levels are reset, changes to this blog have been made, and I've got a plan to upload videos more regularly and learn new chords;
I'm looking up.

I found a second family in the people I spent my time with the most. We are so different but we support one another and they really have been such an amazing group of people to be around with. These pictures were taken after they surprised me at a show I was performing at. I didn't think many people were going to come because I invited people to come but no one really said they would be coming. It ended up being a room full of many familiar faces that I really didn't expect to see. It was a lovely night. 

Last year I performed at places where I could hear the conversations around me, and at places where I could feel the audience taking in every word I had to say. I finally learned how to drive. I gave a talk. I also am finally proud of the music I made, two years after I made it. I cut my hair. I flew to another continent by myself. My brother and sister grew up even more than I thought they would've in a year, and did some really amazing things.

Even though age is just a number, 20 taught me a lot. When it comes to these 'reflection' posts where I think about what I learned the past year and things I've experienced, I always say that "I'm happier now. I'm learning to be myself." But I think this year I really did. 
When I was little my teachers and parents often commented on my maturity. I grew up before I had a chance to be a kid, I took pride in pretending to be grown up. I thought being mature meant acting like a grown up, not showing my emotions, not needing anyone's help. Music and time taught me to be more childlike in the way I saw the world. I learned to listen to my heart more- something I had always struggled with.

But in the recent months or so I had fallen in line with the quiet rules of society. Slowly, but persistently the words and judgement of others began breaking into my world. Because it all happened so gradually, I didn't realise it until recently. I stopped writing on my blog, I stopped writing songs. Even casual posts on social media had to be thought about thoroughly. When I've been let down, I stopped trusting people. When I made a mistake, I stopped trying. I stopped trusting myself. I kept myself busy with three part-time jobs (including music, which I hope to make full time) so that I didn't have to feel anything. It felt as if the time raced by me while I just stood still, let everyone and everything around me pass through and move on, and I didn't say a word. 

But allowing yourself to feel is crucial. It gives you more words to express yourself. You'll understand yourself better and learn to get through the difficult things. You have to allow yourself to feel happy without worrying about the happiness slipping away, because its bound to slip away. Sadness is there so that you can feel happy again. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Twenty.



Can't believe I'm almost 21 and I've just found this post I didn't upload from a year ago.
Things are different now. I've started living a lot more in reality and I suppose that's not all a bad thing. My inspiration is drawn from a new perspective now too; and as much as I am frustrated that I don't write the way I used to, I know it will be okay and that I just have to get used to it. A few years ago I would write 100% for myself- I had all the time and freedom to do so too. And I could only dream of putting out my music for people to listen to and take home. Flash forward three years and I have done what I had set out to do when I was seventeen. It has been quite a rush of emotions and excitement. With more people (not a lot, but more than my family and four walls of my room) listening to my music, I became more aware of what they liked and what they didn't, and I tried to please them. Slowly, I've become afraid to write what I want to write because I was thinking too much about how others might think. I know that it's out of my control, and I'll try let to go a little.

I guess it't time to turn over a new leaf...

Make new plans, 

and dream new dreams. 

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

November and Northern Music Festival


Today I get to do nothing. Its been a while since I sat in my room and wrote to you. November was so busy with shows and activities and I'm having the best time sharing my music with people every other night. Ever since I started performing, this was what I wanted to do; perform and write and share my songs with people who'd listen. Right now I know this kind of schedule won't happen all the time, so I'm just enjoying this and trying to find a way I could do this more.
Penang and Northern Music Festival was a wonderful experience, and it taught me a lot. I went with friends and made many new friends there too, and also many fond memories. We were in the car for hours with the music playing loud, I could actually feel it going through my skin. At night we stayed up playing card games and singing songs. In the day we sang some more.
It was such an exciting feeling, being in the lineup for a music festival. And it was the first music festival I was scheduled to perform at. Not everything went the way it was supposed to, and I was a little disappointed at first, but the support from everyone who came to the festival and all the shows I played at made it magical, and I won't forget it.
Thank you so much for 2,000 'likes' on my facebook page, and for all your continuous support. To the people came the shows, and those who came to more than one show this month even though you've heard my entire set already,
Thank you.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

NOVEMBER SHOWS

2nd: Prime Vibes, charity concert
@ W_Are_House USJ 19, 6:30pm onwards
(Tickets at the door)

10th: Thursday Night Live: Amrita Soon
@ Merdekarya PJ, 9pm

12th: Northern Music Festival
@ Botanical Gardens, Penang.
Tickets: http://northernmusicfestival.asia

12th: Kim Haus
https://www.facebook.com/events/1825028821088906/

13th: Canteen at Chinahouse, Penang
https://www.facebook.com/events/997407010405679/

15th: Shopee Spree Carnival Edition
https://www.facebook.com/events/1281148488582323/

17th: The Barlai Indie Galore (BIG)
@ Barlai KL, 9:30pm

19th: 24 Hour Race Kuala Lumpur Music Festival
https://www.facebook.com/events/203309943445991/

26th: Treehouse Open Mic
**More details to be announced


I'll be selling physical copies of my EP at the shows, as well as giving out some hand-drawn stickers (eep!). Andddd I'm very excited to see you guys too!