For Joel, Chantal and Theo.

So, I made Top 10 most buzzed for CBC’s Songquest. Awesome. Very exciting actually. Voting. Not so much. To be honest, if I have to MAKE people vote, then I should just bow out now. HOWEVER. My strength in this industry is writing GREAT songs. Not that I’m saying Im the absolute best, but I know that I have worked hard the last 12 years, and the songs get played all over the place. Granted, most people still don’t know “who” I am as an artist, and for now, that’s ok. My time will come. For this competition however, one – it would be cool to have the song as Canada’s Hockey Song, and two – I’d want to win knowing that I got the most buzz and most votes because the song is just plain perfect for this. UNSTOPPABLE was written out of a story. I’m proud of this song, the lyrics and everything it stands for. It very much relates to champion spirit of Canada’s great game of hockey and I think the two are a perfect match. But, since it’s up to the talented Joel Plaskett, Chantal Kreviazuk, Theo Fleury, and a few others I don’t know of yet, I’d ask, that as well as the numbers of votes, I hope that they will also judge on the greatness of the song. If the song isn’t good, then it shouldn’t be voted for. But I want to win because the song deserves a win. Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE PRESS, and MEDIA and posts and Tweets, so tweet away. I just know that in the big picture, I’m the glee club introverted nerd in the music industry, so I generally won’t get the majority vote. Yes this could be a pipe dream and it could still turn into a popularity contest from someone winning with the most “I buy my own followers ” kind of artist, and that’s ok too. It is what it is. However, I’ll take this as it goes, and enjoy the ride that it brings. Here’s a little video I made for the judges, but hopefully you’ll all enjoy it too! At the very least, check it out, press play, and go listen to Unstoppable 🙂 Sorry if I sound like I’m whining about voting contests? haha Maybe I am. Again, my blog. And I love this song.  I vote yes 🙂blog-Songquest2013-default (1)

Here’s the press release from Songquest:

Have you heard? Your Song Quest submission made our list of the 10 most buzzed about tunes so far! Check out our web feature about it here:

Here’s my CBC Music page – http://music.cbc.ca/#/artists/MARIKA

Here’s a little video I made for the judges 🙂

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Enjoy the Journey

Image 51I have found that even as I see miracles happen right in front of me, I still soon after forget the celebration and I get ahead of myself. I forget that it wasn’t anything I did to make these things happen, and it won’t be anything I do that will open the biggest doors. I go into crazy mode and think that I need to “rally the troops” and “phone all my famous friends” and I get trapped so quickly in the rat race of the entertainment industry knowing that it all comes down to the fact that some of this is just about  being in a popularity contest. I receive press, or get nominated for an award, or I have to get more press and get votes! I feel trapped that my career hinges on my popularity. All this happens because I lose my identity in it, I get all too wrapped up, stressed out, and panicky to “achieve”.

So, I give up. And then more miracles happen.

The thing I always come back to, and I am always reminded of, is that my life is what I believe it to be. It’s up to me to choose what I value, and what I purpose in my life. I choose to put my family first, I choose my friends, and I let go of those that I need to let go of as we may be on different journeys, and thats ok. Hard, but ok. I choose who I give my time to, as that’s the most valuable measurable thing we have, and I choose to Trust God, and with that, believe that I walk in HIS FAITH and REST. And it’s only when I forget that, that I start relying on me again. It’s easy to rely on me, as I’m used to that. That’s comfortable, and for the most part, it works. But not really. I just trick myself into thinking that so my busy may seem productive but it’s not. So then I spend a few days not doing anything and seeing great things happen without my “efforts” and it makes the truth of God more and more real and hard to ignore even if the “haters” tell you different.

You know how you always read books of super successful wealthy people saying how money doesn’t matter, and it’s all about he journey, and not the bottom line. Or “it’s empty at the top” or whatever. I used to be like ” yeah that’s what rich people say because they can do whatever they want now lol ” But, I’m writing from a place of broken-ness now walking through restoration and seeing God’s firsthand miraculous provision THAT IS FOR EVERYONE, right before me. I’m in the middle of my journey, but that’s what it’s all about: taking every moment by moment and enjoying the great, getting through the hard, believing the best, but ultimately knowing that we are all victorious if we believe it!

As for the career. I quit competing. When I forget I don’t need to, I go crazy for… ooo about an hour, then Stacy hugs me, reminds me I’m loved and kindly but sternly tells me to quit stressing. So I do.

And then, the kids jump on my bed, Stacy makes popcorn, and we enjoy family movie night together, and all is bliss. I’ll still go to radio. The press will find me. The people who are supposed to hear my music will hear it, and I get to live. Just live.

My cousin Greg and the Japanese Redress Film.

1395183_10153426222000122_1390255404_nI wanted to take the time with you today to share and ask for your help on something. If you believe in human rights, and the value of it, then you may already know that we are in the 25th anniversary of the Japanese redress where the Japanese were given a public apology on behalf of the Canadian government for the way BC Japanese residents were treated during World War 2. The basics:  because of the incidents of Pearl Harbour, Japanese Canadians were no longer welcome in BC and they were stripped of everything they owned. They were told to move “East of the Rockies” or go back to Japan. It devastated a generation of Japanese Canadians who had built their homes, businesses and families here in Canada. After a very long ordeal, they were finally granted a public apology and were compensated some for their losses.

The reason I am writing, is because as a Canadian myself, whether you have Japanese relatives or not, human rights matter. And, we should have resources to teach the younger generations why that is, and the information of our own Canadian history is invaluable. When I saw the short film documentary that my cousin Greg Masuda made, I was truly moved. I realized how much as Canadians, even I need to be more aware of our culture, our neighbours, and fellow Canadians. This story shouldn’t be hidden. But right now, it kind of is. Greg made this documentary that has CBC footage that is only licensed to play in limited venues and festivals. He would however, like to be able to buy the licences from CBC to be able to distribute this film to a wider audience, especially schools for education purposes. The film is really good! At the core, it touches on the simple value of human rights, and how in an instant it was taken away from even our own people. Greg has brought to life something – that if there are no licences to continue – we may never get to see this amazing piece of art reach a wider audience of Canadians.

So, if you would take the time, he is SOOO close to reaching his goal with about 2 days to go.  If you would give 1 dollar, 10 dollars, give 100 dollars, everything helps Greg. To me he’s not just a film maker, he’s family, and a pretty stellar talented human being as well. Check it out. Thanks for reading everyone.

Check out Greg’s Kickstarter campaign here:

 http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/gregmasuda/children-of-redress-expanded-license