This project began 25 years ago while my late father was jamming on his guitar, he came up with a song called Hello Hi, he recorded it onto a tape, but over the years it faded away. In an apartment in Brooklyn in 2012, the project was revived. I was in NYC preparing for a show in D.C, staying with my producer/keyboardist, Arlen. In the midst of rehearsing something happened and a new song began to develop. Within about an hour we had written our first duet, Static. After that night, it wasn't long before we began talking about a new album. We weren't sure what the other songs would be, nor the direction of the album until an interview of mine was scheduled to be played on NPR. In the interview a short snippet of the song my dad wrote 25 years ago was played. It struck a chord in us both, Arlen and I knew the song had to be re-made. So, I held my phone up to the cassette player and hit record, sent it to Arlen and within a few days I couldn't believe what I was hearing in my headphones. I knew this was the missing piece and it soon became the inspiration for my new album.
Here's the story that aired on NPR's Studio 360:
I grew up watching my father perform countless times before joining him on stage. I soon realized why my father dedicated so much of his time to hosting parties and performing. I learned of the power of music. He created so many happy memories in those moments, and instilled hope that better days would come for those who had faced horrific atrocities such as my family did during the Khmer Rouge genocide. This album is a tribute to all the people that have been displaced and have struggled simply to survive.
"We are the music-makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams." ~Arthur O'Shaughnessy
Inspired, Arlen and I began working away and soon found ourselves back in the studio recording a new set of songs for the album. We brought in a couple of musicians to lay down some live tracks and with the help of talented 2 time Grammy Award winning sound engineer Matt Shane, now all tracks are mixed and ready to be heard by you!
"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." ~George Bernard Shaw
In the 5 years I've been making music and working as an independent artist, I've learned that in order to give myself the best chance to spread this music and the message behind it, I need to do more. That means finding the right artist to represent the music and create the physical embodiment of the audio. I found that artist while doing a show in Montreal. Cambodian Canadian artist, FONKI (https://www.facebook.com/fonki514) is an incredibly talented and rising star in the world of visual art, whom we've commissioned to create a masterpiece for the album cover.
"From this hour I ordain myself, loos'd of limits and imaginary lines." ~Walt Whitman
To bring the music to life even more, Arlen and I reached out to two amazing artists to create remixes of my upcoming single Hello Hi and before we knew it, they jumped onboard this project. I am so excited to start our collaboration with Los Angeles based electronic duo Indradevi (https://www.facebook.com/indradevimusic) and producer Okay Tony Beats out of Chicago (http://okaytonybeats.com).
"The goal isn't to live forever, the goal is to create something that will." ~Chuck Palahniuk
Lastly, to take the final step, a new music video was screaming to be made! My last music video Chnam Oun 16 (I am 16) has been featured at festivals, in classrooms, and at a number of events raising awareness for human rights. It is still making an impact around the world.
With the help of my incredible music video production team, we will finish telling the story that my dad started when he wrote the first notes to Hello Hi twenty-five years ago.
So to recap, here's the breakdown...
Where will the funds go towards?
• Mastering of the album
• Commissioning of the album artwork
• Printing CDs and Merchandise
• Paying our remix artists/musicians
• An Awesome Music Video
I'd still love to do more! If I can exceed the goal amount of $10,650 the funds will go towards:
• Promotion of the album
• Vinyl print of the album and artwork
• Bringing the live shows to you on a tour with my band.
"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy. They are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom." ~Marcel Proust
In addition to the fabulous selection of merchandise available through this campaign, I wanted to create something special for all of you, my supporters. Those who are familiar with my work know that fashion is another form of medium I use to convey my art. I was very fortunate to have connected with Aariya Creations (http://Aariyacreations.com), a custom handmade jewelry and design company owned and operated by two lovely Cambodian American women. They graciously volunteered to create a signature piece specifically for this campaign. Please check out the perks section!
We are the media. We are the future of art and music. Together, let's make it happen!
I am so grateful for all of you and for this truly humbling journey. Thank you so much for visiting my campaign page and for your support. I look forward to making music together.
With all my Love,
p.s. - As soon as you support this kickstarter, PLEASE TELL EVERYONE YOU'VE DONE IT, AND SPREAD THE LINK FAR AND WIDE.
A special thanks to all the wonderful artists and musicians involved in this project: Arlen Hart, Matt Shane, Yvan Iturriaga, Mecky Creus, Alejandro Morales, Darren Colston, Indradevi, OkayTonyBeats, FONKI, Kenji Tajima, Nick Gianni, and the ladies of Aariyah Creations.
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge is reaching the goal amount. If I do not meet my goal, this project will be postponed until funding is obtained. Other challenges include scheduling and coordinating between all the artists. However, my team and I are dedicated to making this project happen and we will try our best to keep delays to a minimum. As for the rewards I expect them to be delivered by the delivery date noted. If there are any concerns or questions, please feel free to email me at email@example.com.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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