Welcome to our Kickstarter campaign! This is Khatchadour Khatchadourian’s 5th album, and a unique collaborative project with Sirouhi Semerjian and Hasmig Tatiossian. Here’s our story and why we’d love your support.
The precursor to launching the lullaby album started when my daughter, Mila, was born. I'm very passionate about the Armenian culture, and wanted to instill the same love for who she is from a very early age. Knowing how important language and singing can be for infant bonding, I set out to teach myself Armenian lullabies. I started searching on all kinds of social media platforms, such as Youtube, Armenian websites and Instagram/Facebook pages, as well as Google, and realized that what I found was very limited in quality and variety. I wanted Armenian lullabies that were soothing, weren’t performed in operatic voices, and the lyrics of which I could easily understand. As a new mom, it was too time-consuming to decipher lyrics and my energy would not allow for so much extra work at a time when I was barely sleeping.
I had a conversation with Khatch and Hasmig soon after, and the idea for this project was born! Having heard Khatch’s music in the meditative genre (if you haven't heard it, now's a great time!), I knew it was going to be a perfect match for lullabies. We ruminated on the idea for some time, and ultimately believed that this would be a wonderful gift to our community, and a way for us to honor our treasured traditions.
When Siroun suggested the idea of recording a lullaby project, I thought both time and intention were aligning perfectly. Over the last few years, many of my close friends have been having children and I’ve thought several times that it would be beautiful if I could gift them lullabies. I see myself traversing and blending world music, meditation and sound healing genres with a strong emphasis on Armenian language, while supporting my voice with both the Armenian Duduk and electronic soundscape design.
This particular project is quite meaningful to my heart as it gives me the opportunity to broaden the definition of what it means to create an Armenian meditative voice while taking the ancient sounds of the Duduk and blending them with modern electronica. Lullabies are cultural treasures, and comment on our understanding of sleep and rest. Meditative music has to -- at the very least -- create a resting point in any human being. Lullabies are one of the ways in which both parent and child can reach a restful and a meditative space together, while intimately communing in the mysterious love force, the parent-child bond.
As the musician on this project, I hope to help bring stillness, softness and rest. What’s truly exciting is that I get to create tracks dedicated to all babies and children who brighten our days with their smiles, authenticity, and soulfulness!
My involvement in this beautiful project was in helping to bring it to life. We began by researching every resource we could find on lullabies. We also excavated old poems that Khatch is adapting to lullabies. In addition to creating a quality album, the project has been about preserving our heritage and language.
The creation of the album is underway, and we are aiming to offer a 10-12 track album.
An important note about our budget and Kickstarter, if you’re not familiar with this platform: if we don’t raise the full amount, Kickstarter does not give us anything. Our fundraising goal covers recording, mixing, mastering, and pressing CDs, as well as paying for the cover art and booklet design.
We organized an artists call to involve our community in the creation of the cover art. We’re very excited to be featuring Martin Vaneskeheian’s beautiful art, which will also be printed on the merchandise we’ll send backers. He's a very talented artist and has been a joy to work with. Check out some of his work here and here.
WHY ARE LULLABIES SO POWERFUL?
There is a lot of research about the importance of building rituals when putting a child to sleep. If the same ritual is repeated every single time children are put down to sleep, they become aware of the sequence of events and anticipate becoming calmer and being “lulled" to sleep. Once asleep, the developing brain uses that time to integrate all of the different stimuli and learning done throughout the day. Sleep becomes the essential way to consolidate all of the information presented to them while awake.
The soothing and healing nature of music is well-documented, and with newborns, can actually make huge progress in treating babies’ discomfort, pain, or alleviating their frustration.
Over the last few years, scientists have shown the powerful impact of lullabies on babies. Not only do babies recognize musical patterns, but parental singing has helped premature infants improve their sleep, eating, weight gain, and heart and respiratory rates. This fact, coupled with findings from similar research suggesting the significance of speaking to children in their native tongue to develop language syntax schemes in their developing minds, fueled our passion to create a way for parents in similar situations to have easily accessible ways to teach themselves and their children the songs and poems of our culture.
The research we found is certainly fascinating to us and important in unraveling the reasons behind why music is so powerful, but to see the benefit of music, we really only need to watch a baby being lulled to sleep. That sacred space between different states of consciousness, when a baby’s attention draws away from external stimuli, and softy enters the realm of sleep still remains a mystery. For time immemorial, mothers have shared this space with their tiny human beings. Whether or not they sing on key, it’s one of the most powerful bonding mechanisms.
WHAT MAKES THIS PROJECT DIFFERENT FROM ANY OTHER LULLABY ALBUM?
If you’ve searched for them, you know there are very few Armenian lullaby albums available, especially for Diasporan Armenians, and while they’re beautiful, nothing like this one has been done before. We are creating an album that brings to life lost poems, some older than 100 years old and sing them as lullabies. This will be a fusion between ancient Armenian melodies -- including the traditional woodwind duduk -- electronic music, and a touch of nature-inspired sounds. It’s a combination unique to Khatch’s musical expression. We invite you to sample his transcendent voice to imagine the depth of this album.
Lastly, we have not found a single Armenian lullaby album perfomed by a male musician. We love witnessing the transformation of families as fathers proudly take on more caretaking roles. We want them to share this magical space with ther babies just as powerfully as mothers do. This is our contribution to this inevitable and beautiful movement, as men step into their roles as fathers with intention and love. Singing lullabies can be a tradition shared by mothers and fathers together.
HOW YOU CAN HELP!
Producing an album takes significant resources, and that’s where you come in! The funds will be spent on:
- Recording, Mixing, Mastering the tracks
- CD Press
- Design of the original illustration for the cover
- Graphic Design
- Videography for Kickstarter
- Gift products
- Of course, Kickstarter's fees
We believe our community will cherish this album and we look forward to your support.
Our goal is for our supporters to have the albums and merchandise before the holidays!
Recording: Late September - October
Mixing: Early November
Mastering: Mid November
CD Pressing: Mid November
Shipping: Mid December
Risks and challenges
We don’t expect deviating from our timeline. Having created 4 previous albums, Khatch has a lot of experience, but we recognize that like any creative project, some processes may take longer than others. If anything should change, it may be that recording or mixing takes longer than we expect, though we don’t anticipate it.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)