Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Birthday Rambles

Today is my birthday! Hip hip hooray for me! 

I love my birthday, not because I get presents or eat lots of cake - that doesn't really happen anymore - but because I make it an amazing day. I love filling it with things I love doing in a chilled and relaxed way. 

This year I took the day off from work so I didn't have to get up in the morning, I'm not a huge morning person - not that I'm grumpy, I just don't like getting out of bed. I spent the day listening to Home Free and books while cuddling my kitties. They know how to wish their mum a happy birthday! In the afternoon I took a long walk along the beach walk (Paseo) before I laid down on the sand and listened to the waves for a long time, just letting go of all the thoughts. I felt the wind touch my skin and the sun warm it. It was amazingly loving and soothing for my soul. On my way home I walked with bare feet and let the waves wash over them while picking some beautiful sea shells. Life quality at it's best! 

When I was a kid I had this book for the year of 1970, my birth year, and I started thinking about that book today. It listed things that happened during that year. It made me think about what happened on my birthday, other than me being born, so here are some things that occurred on March 21. 

Some birthdays and events from this day over the years;
- 1685 composer Johann Sebastian Bach was born
- 1958 actor Gary Oldman was born
- 1962 actor Matthew Broderick was born
- 1963 the prison island Alcatraz was closed
- 1970 (on my birthday) the first Earth Day proclamation was issued
- 2006 Twitter was founded

Also, I am now 17,168 days old now. 


Today's video is one of my favourite Home Free covers, of course. It is a cover of Maren Morris' song My Church. I not only love the melody - it is very catchy - but I love the sentiment of it. Some people mistake this song for a christian or religious song, but it is really a spiritual song and spirituality has nothing to do with religion, it is all about your heart. And this song speaks to my heart. My church is that place within where I get peace and ease, and I find that place when I listen to Home Free, walk along the beach, meditate, write, paint or do anything else that makes my heart sings. This song makes my heart sings. 

I hope you like it!

Love//
Carina




Sunday, 12 March 2017

The Sound of Silence

A couple of days ago Peter Hollens released his latest video featuring Home Free's bass singer Tim Foust. This song is the most requested song, of all times, by Peter Hollens' fans. The song is The Sound of Silence, a song I am sure you have heard on more than one occasion in your life.

The song was written by a young Paul Simon, of Simon & Garfunkel, and was part of their first album Wednesday Morning, 3 am released in October of 1964. The song - a soft duet accompanied by a guitar - was a failure, as was the album, and the duo split up. Less than a year later, after the song had started to grow some airplay, the song's producer decided to add some electronic instruments to it without running it by either Paul Simon or Art Garfunkel first and even released it before they had heard it. This new version hit The Billboard Top 100's No 1 spot just as 1966 arrived.

That version is the most popular and most famous still, but in late 2015 until Disturbed covered and released a video for it, a video that has more than 196 Million views on YouTube and it's widely shared on social media.

Now, enter Peter Hollens and Tim Foust.

This new version has everything that makes all the mentioned versions great, except for instruments. True to their roots this new and exciting rendition is all a cappella, Peter Hollens style. We have heard the combination of the two voices before, when they collaborated on Misty Mountain (read my blog post for that video here), and we love them together. This song shows us we have not been wrong.

So, what's so special about this cover?

- The words are important - and you can hear every single of them clearly here. The combination of the words and melody of this song makes it easy to hear anyway, but you hear it not only with your ears, but with your heart as well.
- The feeling - honestly, this songs melody is gripping and haunting on it's own, Peter and Tim adds to it with perfection, highlights in the right places and drops back when suitable all adding to the feeling that we need to see each other's hearts more.
- The harmonies - seriously, a cappella is all about harmonies and this is no exception. These two guys complement each other no matter if they sing tenor, baritone or bass - together, when harmonizing or separately. Yes, they both do a bit of both - although Tim's bass is unbeatable.
- The power build up - building up a song at the right time and in the right place is crucial for some songs and this is such a song. It's fair to say that it's easier to do using instruments - which is what happened when S&G re-released it in 1965, the song was overdubbed using instruments to help build up the power. Disturbed uses a combination of orchestra instruments and the singer David's strong and low voice to build it up - but it's a more required taste with that kind of metal. P&T use the song itself, and their voices, to emphasize the power.
- The intensity - how they look, how they sing, how the video is made - intense in just the right amount and way.
- The dark sides - both Peter and Tim brings out a dark side that I really like, Tim especially. We are so used to seeing these two guys as loving, caring and funny guys with big hearts, and it's nice to see the (obviously innocent) darkness shine through this way.
- The end - spot on in every single way - the looks, the lighter expressions, the colour leaving, the pose - mirroring the cover picture from Simon & Garfunkel's Bookends album.

In short - this song and video has a true potential to become one of the top 3 versions of this song - to me it is already No 1. Well done, Peter and Tim! Well done!

What are your thoughts? Which rendition is your all-time favourite? Comment below.

S&G original version 1964
S&G overdubbed version 1965
Disturbed version 2015

Love//
Carina


Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Can't Stop the Feeling (For the Joys of My Life)

8 years ago today I did something that changed my life completely. March 1st 2009 was the day I took 3 bags with me and moved to Spain. (You can read the story behind it in this old blog post.)

My life today is simply amazing and I am so in love with it and everything in it and the best thing is that it keeps getting better and better by the day. Honestly! Sure, I have days that are not great, but most days are and those that aren't are still good days because I have so many things and people in my life that are amazing.

One of the most fun and amazing things I have done lately was to be able to make two people happy by giving away one regular Home Free ticket and selling a Home Free VIP ticket to a reduced price as Fry It Forwards (Read the story behind it here.). Those tickets now have new and happy homes and I can't wait for them to experience Home Free live. Congratulations to Rae Ellen and Sherry! It gives me so much joy to make other people happy.

Another thing a do to make people happy is my job. I am lucky enough to spend my days calling people to let them know that the company I work for cares. I absolutely love hearing the happiness in our customers' voices when they realize that's why I call them. Amazing!

On Monday I did something new and fun when I attended a choir practice for the first time since I was a teenager. I have been thinking about it on and off for a few years, but never done anything about it because - you know - I'm lazy and comfortable. But back in early January I decided that this was the year to find a fun choir to join. Of course it only took one day for someone to ask me, seemingly out of the blue, if I wanted to join one. I have been busy with other things since then, but on Monday I was finally able to go and I absolutely loved it and will try to go every week from now on! Of course it seems like the perfect choir for me where the joy and the heart is the most important thing and the choir leader believes that everybody has a good singing voice inside that is waiting to be discovered and let loose. I can't wait to hear it! Hehe

Today I went to see an apartment that I loved, loved, loved. I have wanted one of those apartments for years, but they don't get available very often. Well, this is my chance! It's got a big roof terrace and partial views to both the Sea and the mountains and it's in a perfect location and has a perfect layout. It is my right-now-dream-house (because I keep growing, evolving and expanding so eventually I will want something even better). Keep your fingers crossed that I will get it! Send me lots of love and positive vibes!

This blog is something else I love about my life. It fills my heart with joy to write and it fills my heart with joy, love and pride when someone reads and likes what I write. Thank you to all who do!

Today's video is one of my favourite Home Free covers lately. OK, I say that about all of them, I know, but seriously, they all are! Anyway, this is a cover of Justin Timberlake's Can't Stop The Feeling and it's a happy, fun, good feeling song. Perfect for how I feel about my life!

Oh, and one more thing! My life didn't get this amazing just by chance and by me waiting for it to become it - it is this fantastic because whenever something in my life isn't as good as I want it to be I change it to something closer to what I want than it was, one step at a time, and I make sure to enjoy every single step on the way. If something in your life isn't what you want change it - if you can't change it find a way to love it - and even if you do change it find a way to love, or at least like, it before it changes. That's the only way to do it, that's the most joyful way to live your life.
Now, go sing and dance and look at the good things in your life!

Love//
Carina


Sunday, 19 February 2017

Home Free Tickets - Fry It Forward

Fry It Forward

As I mentioned in my last post I have two Home Free tickets I will not need. Here is what I am doing with them;

1) This is a regular ticket to the show in Aurora, IL on March 24. The seat is Orchestra One/R 8

Who can get it?

I want to give this to someone you think would love Home Free, but won't give them the time, or the money, to actually listen to them, and certainly not go see them. Maybe you have a partner, a parent, sibling. child, other relative, good friend or even a colleague you think would get blown away by their amazing talents, humour and on key singing. The important thing here is that this ticket will not go to anyone that has seen them or are truly considering seeing them. This person is not already a fan. Do you know anyone like this?

Leave a comment below stating that it's ticket 1, who you want to have it and why.


2) The second ticket is a VIP ticket for Terre Haute, IN on March 25. Seat A 14

Who can get it?

This ticket is for a Fry. I will not give this ticket away, but I will sell to a reduced price. I paid 102 USD for the ticket, I will sell it to you for 60 USD. You will have to have PayPal for the transaction. I would like it to go to someone who has never been to a VIP. Is that person you or maybe another Fry you think deserves it?

Leave a comment below stating it's ticket 2 and why you want it, or why you think someone else should have it.


Leave your comment no later than Thursday 23d of February, and I will draw the winning names during next weekend.

Now, what song would be more suitable right now than "Sold!, by John Michael Montgomery! This is one of my favourite Home Free covers, and I am so happy I got to see it live several times last month! As soon as I start singing it I feel like a pretty lady, and I start to smile! I hope you do the same!

  "Hey, pretty lady won't you give me a smile" 

I hope to see a lot of entries for the tickets! Have fun, spread the Home Free love and always love yourself and your life!

Love//
Carina



Sunday, 12 February 2017

Home Free Talk-along

For those of you that have been to a live show with Home Free - you already know what an amazing experience that is, but for those of you that have yet to see this amazing group perform live - what the heck are you waiting for?? Seriously, you will not have a better time at any live show, ever. Or at a live comedy act. These Guys are just so talented, with such amazing voices, serious charm, good looks and they top it all off with an amazing sense of humour that at times will make your cheeks hurt because you are laughing so much.

I have so many impressions and stories to tell from the three UK shows that I just attended, but I am still sorting them out in my head, trying to understand what the heck I got myself into on August 16, 2014 when I clicked to watch the first video with them that I came across. All I can say is that it made my life better in a lot of different ways, and I know we are many that say the same thing. Home Free certainly brings people together and their music help people heal from all sorts of different things. And I love every minute of it. I really miss my Euro Fry Family. I can't wait to see them all again. Oh, and I obviously can't wait to see Home Free again. One thing I've learned to be true is that every show with them is different from the last one you saw, even if that last one was only a few hours earlier. Every show is a unique experience. That's why we keep going to as many shows as we possibly can, they all stand on their own.

Anyway, I have a little treat for you all today, At the 4pm show in London, at the London A Cappella Festival, we, the audience, kind of blew the Guys away when we all sang/talked along with Tim to Champagne Taste (On a Beer Budget), a song that Tim wrote. Everything in this clip is so great; Austin's reaction, Tim's smile and even laughter, the audience and of course the back-up dancers - all of it was such great fun. It is surely one of my fondest memories from all the shows I went to. 

Luckily one of the Euro Fries caught this gem on film so I can re-watch it over and over again. Just see for yourself, and send a big thank you to zollykod for sharing it with us all. Thank you so much, C!




And this is what Tim said after the song ended, big thanks to my sister Helena for sharing it with us. It's my holler you can hear, btw. hehehe


A big thank to both ladies who uploaded these two clips to YouTube just so I could share this moment with you! You are both amazing!

Some of you might know that I had plans to go the US to see them next month, but I had to cancel those plans. I'm ok with not seeing Home Free because I just saw them three times and I will see them in 3 months again, in Spain (although, I could never get enough of seeing them live.) and maybe somewhere else too. Oh, did I forget to mention that they are looking to do a short Euro tour in May? Well, THEY ARE!! It's not been confirmed but straight from their mouths is that they are looking at Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands for May when they are over for the Spain gig. As I said it's not 100 percent certain yet, which is why they haven't announced it properly yet, but they are close to being there. I hope I can make it to at least one of those shows, but I will at least have Spain. I am already excited about it and our plans are starting to come together. Bring it on!!

Back to the fact that I will not be going to see them in the US - this leaves me with tickets to two shows. I have a regular ticket for Aurora, IL on March 24 and a VIP for Terre Haute, IN on March 25. Keep your eyes on this space for more information on how to get your hands on one of them. The Aurora, IL ticket will be Fried Forward and the Terre Haute, IN will be sold. That is all I am saying at the moment. Stayed tuned!

I will also say that I am sad that I don't get to see my US Frie(nd)s as soon as I was hoping to, but I will go there at some point in the future. A Christmas show in the US is on my bucket list, after all. 

Love//
Carina

Friday, 6 January 2017

Home Free In Europe x 2

Happy New Year, and hey, I'm back!!

I took an unplanned and unexpected break from blogging, actually from almost all kind of writing, after my last post in April. I had a lot of things going on in my life that needed my focus and attention, and it has taken some time to find the inspiration and true will and love for writing again. It happens, even though I know I feel much happier when I do write.

Anyway, I am great, I still love my life - that never changed - and I still love writing. So, here I am again. Yayy! Welcome back me!!

So, what's this about Home Free coming to Europe? Well, they are coming to Europe. Soon. But before I get deeper into that I should mention that they have been back here once since I last saw them. They were headliners for the 2nd Annual Country Festival in the Austrian alps back in September, and needless to say they were a hit and they absolutely loved it. I hope they will be back this year, but time will tell. Also, they are actually scheduled to come to Europe TWICE during the first half of this year.

First off, they are coming back to the UK (and Ireland) in a few weeks time. They are doing a total of 5 shows starting with Dublin, Ireland on January 24 followed by Cardiff, Wales on the 25th, Birmingham, England on the 26th and they are finishing the tour up with 2 shorter shows at the London A Cappella Festival at Kings Place in London, UK on the 28th. The London shows have been sold out for a long time (it didn't take long before they were), but I believe there might still be tickets available for the other shows. So if you are anywhere near or have the possibility to travel you should go grab one! It is well worth the money, I promise. To buy tickets for their shows just go to their website.

I am flying to London on the 22nd to meet up my sister and our fried E for a week of fun. We have a lot planned and are not only going to the Birmingham show, but also have VIP tickets for the first London show and regular tickets for the second one later that same day. Yup, we are going to the same show twice in one day. (Call us fanatics or groupies or whatever, we don't care.) To say that we are excited is an understatement. We are very eager to not only see and meet Home Free again, but to meet up with our "old" Home Fry friends as well as getting to meet "new" ones. There is going to be a whole lot of laughter, hugs, love and music that week.

We are not only going to do Home Free related things, though. We are also going to go sightseeing, have afternoon tea, visit the Harry Potter Studios and see the musical Kinky Boots. So much fun is planned!! I can't wait!! The best part is that I get to do it all with my little sister! I love her so much, she is the very best!

On the 29th we will fly to Sweden and I will spend a few days visiting with family and friends, and I am mostly looking forward to hug my mum. I haven't seen her since May 2015. She doesn't know I'm coming so I hope she'll be happy to see me. Hahaha

But, didn't I say that Home Free are scheduled to come to Europe TWICE in the first half of this year? Yes, yes, I sure did! The details about the second time has not been publicly shared yet, but

THEY ARE COMNG TO SPAIN!!!!

Wooohooooo!!! All I can say about it now is that they are coming to an area around Barcelona on a Saturday in May - and I have a VIP ticket for it!! Of course.

Go support them on Patreon for more information and a chance to buy tickets.

Actually, this one is extra exciting for me because in the information they shared to the Patrons, on Patreon, they mentioned me personally, by name, as someone they knew would be excited to visit with them in Spain! For Real!! There I was, on the first day of the year, snuggled up on the sofa with the best man in the world when I got the email and I saw Spain and then my name - and I kind of freaked out a bit. And then their manager Luke shared a link to the information in the official Patreon group on Facebook and he tagged me. I didn't even finish reading all the information so at first I missed that VIP tickets were already on sale. I'm glad someone mentioned it to me only minutes later so I could get one for me and my sister. I am still a bit in shock and disbelief about it all. It is kind of surreal that my all-time favourite band would mention me.

Do I need to say that I love it? Big time! What an amazing start to the year!

Oh, wait! I'm not done with Home Free related Euro shows yet! Chris Rupp, the founder and former baritone of the group is scheduled to do a solo tour in Northern Europe during the second half of March. He hasn't released all the details yet, but he will be doing 4 shows in Germany, 2 in Sweden, 1 in the Netherlands. 1 outside of London and 1 in Dublin. He hasn't even toured the USA yet. We get him first! How cool is that! Stay tuned for more information! Or better yet;

Go support Chris on his Patreon page to get a heads-up.

Wow! That is a lot!

I'd like to end this post with one of my all-time favourite Home Free songs. Their cover on Thomas Rhett's "Die A Happy Man". I love it for several reasons; it showcases Home Free's newest member Adam Chance's voice so well - it's such a smooth voice with a whisky rasp filled with a lot of emotions, Also, the love shown between Tim and his lady is so sweet and uplifting. They married last week and are currently on their honeymoon. I hope they will keep looking at each other with such love for the rest of their lives. Congratulations to them!

Have a nice weekend!
Love//
Carina




Thursday, 28 April 2016

Take a Chance and Try Everything For Success

I while back I told you about Home Free's founder and baritone Chris Rupp's decision to leave Home Free to pursue his solo career. His last days with the band he has so successfully lead through good times to great times are getting closer and in a couple of weeks he has done his last performance with them as part of the band. As I also mentioned at that time Home Free took on Adam Chance, former bass singer of Street Corner Symphony, as Chris' "replacement". I use the word replacement lightly because nobody can truly replace Chris and his voice nor should anybody try to, and Chance has said that he's there to bring his own thing to the table.

Unlike a lot of the other Home Fries I was never worried what it would sound like without Chris and with Chance, I was merely eager and excited to hear what the new sound would be like, but there was never a doubt in my mind that I would like it or that it wouldn't be great. I have complete faith in all of the Guys of Home Free, their dedication and love for what they do, and for Chris not leaving until they had found the right person to add to the mix. From the moment I first heard Chance sing, SoS songs, I loved the warmth and fullness of his voice. The first song could not come fast enough for me. As sad as a part of me is that Chris is leaving, as happy and excited am I for his new adventures and I will be following him closely, and I'm also excited to see what the future holds for Home Free.

I haven't seen the film Zootopia yet, Zootroplis in some countries, but I have heard the song "Try Everything" with Shakira from it. I have a love for Shakira and her voice and she is one of few artists I enjoy listening to over and over again, even though I don't follow her and haven't heard or know all of her songs. Also, the song in itself is good and I love the lyrics and it's got a catchy melody to it, I have liked hearing it when it's come on even though I have not gone hunting for it anywhere.

Now, mix all these things together, Home Free, Adam Chance and Try Everything, and what do we get?

We get success!

Yes, we finally got to hear how Home Free sounds with Chance mixed in, and let me tell you, it is perfection! I knew it would be great but this is far and beyond great, in my opinion. Chance brings an edge to the sound that I think I have been missing without really knowing it. I love his deep, full and a bit rough voice, that is still mellow and full of emotions. It has character. And I love that in a voice. Always have and always will. I think this is a great next step for Home Free. Since Chris had to do his own thing for happiness sake I'm glad they took a Chance (yeah, yeah, incredibly lame, but still funny, right?).

The song is, obviously, Try Everything and as per usual they shoot it through the roof like a rocket that has no intention of ever coming back to earth ever again. Yes, that's how fantastic it is. And, we not only get to hear Chance mix with the other Guys, we get to hear him sing solo. And I frekkin' love it!!

Now, this rendition is so much more than just Chance and a great song, though. It has a fantastic beat by Adam Rupp, a beat that makes me want to move my butt every time I hear it. And it has actually taken me jogging twice in last week. It's a heavier beat than we are used to hear, but I like it! Thanks, Adam. Like, really, me jogging. Weird. We also have Tim's bass line that catches my ear every time I hear the song, especially in the second half of the song. I love it! It's groovy! And the way his and Chance's voices blend is smooth and makes me want more of it, like right now! Of course we have more leads and harmonies by both Rob Lundquist and Austin Brown. Both, in my humble opinion, singing their hearts out in the most perfect ways. There's a fullness to both of their voices in this song that I really love and the way Chance's deep and lower baritone voice lifts Austin's and Rob's voices is simply gorgeous. And without loosing any of the harmonies we are so used to hearing.

I first heard this song last Wednesday when it was released to Home Free's Patrons, on Patreon, and I've had it on repeat ever since and I am still not even close to being tired of it. To me it is the sound track to my life right now as I have some really big changes going on and coming on in several different areas of my life. I'll Try Everything. Almost.

If you haven't checked it out yet you really need to do so RIGHT NOW!!! Just GO! I'll be here waiting to hear your opinion of our new baritone-bass Guy!

All that is left to say today is a big, fat, huge and very excited, WELCOME to Adam Chance!

Great debut, Chance! You will do!

Love//
Carina