How do you honor a mans life who was so loyal, careful, loving unconditionally beyond a shadow of a doubt with a heart as big as the night sky? I've written countless songs about my family and especially my "Diddy" but none as special as STING. This week preparing for the release...my tummy has been full of a rollercoaster of emotions...excitement...nervousness..tears. Lots of them. I've cried myself to sleep almost every single night since my Dad passed away. This week was the 6 month anniversary of his passing and it feels like yesterday. When my Dad learned of my love for music, he and my Mom did everything in their power to help me succeed at it. They supported me in my goals, allowed me comfort with calls home during my travels, helped me soar with my free spirit and put up with my out of the box shenanigans. My entire life as I strived to "succeed" in music my folks were my biggest fans....when even I wasn't sure what the end goal was. At some point in my earlier life I would have loved to have won a Grammy or charted on Billboard...but that didn't come and that was then....Sure I could keep trying for those and maybe even accomplish them someday.....heck I still might who knows.....But the difference between me and that girl long ago is that in December ...is that a few weeks before he left us my Dad told me he was so very proud of me...and all of a sudden those heavy dreams that I carried around all these years seemed to get lighter. And as difficult as saying goodbye to my Diddy was....it helped me see this life in a new light. Success isn't making more social media fans, or selling more downloads, or chasing big stages and lights, or even about how much money you make. Success isn't about wanting more and more and more. I've learned through my Dad that NONE of this is about me. IT NEVER WAS. My gift was given to me because there is a bigger picture...I'm supposed to share it. Give it to others.
Picasso once said ...The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose in life is to GIVE IT AWAY.
My Dad always loved "STING" and he couldn't wait to see what the world thought of it...but when he got sick my focus changed and I postponed recording it. Until one afternoon he sat me down and asked me to record a version with me singing it for his celebration of life. Mom, Dad and I all cried and hugged and tried to find some peace in the planning (which was impossible for me to do.)...The hard part was saying goodbye....losing my rock....but it was even harder to hear the song we wrote played as the paul bearers carried "Diddy" away. It's taken alot of time and alot of processing to get to a place where I could share this special gift with the world. But today I give my gift away....and I hope it becomes a special way for each person out there to heal. If you have lost someone you loved, if you are in the midst of saying goodbye yourself may you find peace in the melody, love in the words, and healing in the music....and I have already found peace in beginning the process of giving it away.
I need to say a special thanks to my co-writers Jerry Salley and Jim McBride ...I'm so happy I almost fell over in front of your table at the Pensacola Songwriter's Festival..and even more thankful that you two big time writers gave a little ole beginner like me a chance. Thanks to Andrew Adams and Maddy Dinsmore for producing such a simply beautiful video and capturing some of the footage so Diddy could see it recorded. Jason Schmidt- I couldn't have done this without you. Thank you for putting together such an incredible team of musicians and for helping me capture the essence of the song. Rory Rositas- You always create amazing sounds, your skills are off the charts and I am so grateful you helped us produce this one, to the musicians who brought their talent to the table ( thank you for being a part of such an emotional session and keeping the laughter in the room as much as possible!), to those who donated to Dad's Bucket List and Eat My Beats for hosting the benefit concert and to all of the volunteers, donors, musicians, and bands who played in it you went above and beyond. To all of my fans, friends, family, 30A Family, and extended music family who have stood by me through the ups and down's this year...THANK YOU!
For those interested in reading more about the beginning of my Dad's Journey and Bucket List Adventures please visit