Flood; an Album on Overcoming as a Transgender Woman (LGBT)
Flood; an Album on Overcoming as a Transgender Woman (LGBT)
Sharing stories through her first full length album, Claire Michelle's experiences are vast and epic like the songs she creates.
Sharing stories through her first full length album, Claire Michelle's experiences are vast and epic like the songs she creates. Read more
My name is Claire Michelle. I'm trying to raise funds for an album to increase the awareness and representation of transgender people in music. I'm a bit of a social activist, but I'm also a model and a musician!
I believe music is incredibly powerful such that one day millions of people could be listening to my music and realize they relate to trans people more than they had previously thought. I believe that my music has the stories to provide avenues to support understanding and acceptance. Bono once said that "music can change the world because it can change people." I really believe my music has that ability.
Through music and social activism, and raising awareness of trans musicians I can create a better place in society for everyone. Before I do this though, I need an album. This I can't do without the support of the community behind me.
What is this project about?
After recording the album, I plan to do so much more. I'm trying to make a difference for trans people by getting more of our community in the common parts of society. With my knowledge in the music industry, this album will put a reputation behind my name, and in turn I'll be able to put focus on finding other trans artists to feature and bring up.
Having come from a place of nothing, I know the frustration one can feel by being completely disregarded no matter how talented they are. I want to change that, we're stronger than people give us credit for and it's time they hear us.
I want get these stories out for everyone to hear. I want the people listening to my music to understand that they relate to the transgender community more than they realize. I strongly believe that understanding stories and experiences provide avenues to support and acceptance. Music is the perfect medium for this.
What about the Music?
After years of writing and exploring my musical identity, I'm so excited for this era of music. The album will consist of 12 songs and about how I've come to terms with my life changes. The album will be fluent from front to back, with no breaks in-between; a cradle of sound.
When I write, I remove all judgement and aim to be honest with myself. My music comes from deep, and sometimes dark, emotional places. This is reflected in not only my lyrics, but my guitar as well; I write with dissonance and resolve the music like a dark emotion simmers.
We as a band are taking the summer to ensure the songs are polished to shine; working on new songs like "enepec", a song about decisions and their consequences. We're giving new light to songs like "Out of the Shadows" to share the song in it's full intensity. A few songs will reflect the happier side of my life, as I've finally come to a place where I can see the shimmer around me.
To bridge my two albums, Blanket Fort Films reached out to me in May and offered to shoot a music video for me. Without hesitation I said yes. The people in Seattle believe in me, and I need you to believe in me too. You can see the music video for "Fall" here on August 17th!
Who are we?
This project has the support of many people, and everyone of them trust me to ensure this vision becomes a reality. I am Claire Michelle, the one writing these words and giving you the emotional outpouring of music. Like most trans stories go I was kicked out and put on the street 3 years ago, but this is not a sob story. This is what makes me unique. I saw it as an opportunity to start over. I took to Seattle and the last 3 years I've risen up and become an extremely confident, hard working, and respected individual here in Seattle. I have no doubt about the success I will find in my life, and I'm working myself like a dog to ensure that I live my life to the fullest.
Here on this particular project we have three people bringing an incredible amount of skills to the table.
Aline Vida helped in the early stages to organize and conceptualize everything! Rakesh Maliek is the one who will be bringing me to you. He's the one handling all the technical aspects of the live stream and ensuring you have a seamless experience. Finally, we have Katherine Lawrence, a friend from my college days and a talented writer. Katherine is our PR representative and may be how you heard about this project, without her this project may be a lot smaller.
The next group of people are perhaps the most important to me, they create depth to the sound and tug at my emotions with every note. Jerett Samples plays some sick guitar, he's a humble guy, but oh does he shred. Alyssa Martini plays a mean drum. She's a multi instrumentalist and will be playing some harp on the album too! Her LGBTQ roots bring another level of pride to this band as well! Finally, our newest member, Ben Haber. Ben plays a wicked bass and creates so much tension in the music. He's a teacher of music and crazy passionate about it all.
Finally, the most important people are the ones who keep my motivation high and my drive focused. They support me in every way. These people have faith in me and I can't thank them enough for their kind words and love. The viewers on my YouTube, the Instagrammers and Tweeters, my Patrons keeping me afloat, and the ones who write out their inner most secrets to me via email, you are my rock. You are the ones who I can't do without and you keep me grounded, thank you.
What's in the future?
The album my kickstarter is funding is only a piece of the puzzle. What I feel is missing for trans people is a representation of humanity. We're still being talked about because we're transgender not because of our talent and success. Through my success, I've made it my mission to ensure I bring up more trans artists, and give them a voice to share their art and music through.
What's the Flood Concert - Live Stream?
Hey! I'm glad you asked. This stream is a concert I'm putting on at the Rendezvous in Seattle. We will be playing for 1 hour and be featuring most of the music from Flood! Think of this like a preview brought into your living room! The Requisite will be joining us as well! Maxwell the vocalist is a great friend of mine and I'm really looking forward to having them play with us!
The live stream will be happening on the 25th at 9/6pst. If you're one of the backers on this project, you'll receive a link to the YouTube hosted stream! RSVP on Facebook if you would!
The stream will consist between 6-8 cameras, some static, some right up with us on stage! Colors, fog, and lights will be a part of this spectacle! f all goes well, we're going to take this stream and turn it into a live concert album as well!
Alright, let's talk logistics.
- $14,000 is going directly to album cost. This is paying the musicians performing and the time in the studio.
- $3,000 is going to PR once the album is complete and nearly ready to be released. This money is going to sit under my mattress until then.
- $2,500 will be going to the live stream and Rakesh. This is a multi camera stream and when it's all said and done we'll have a gorgeous live concert as well.
- $2,750 will be going to Katherine our PR on this project. She's contacting everyone and their brother (or sister) (or non binary).
- $500 will be going to Aline for her help with the conceptualization of this whole thing!
- $22,750 is the total, it's totally doable!
To summarize: the funds we raise from this project will go directly to a 10-12 song album and a portion will go to a basic PR package once the album is released. The rest of the money will go to the people behind the scenes who are working to get this Kickstarter out there! With any additional funds raised, I will consider doing a bigger PR campaign and looking at touring in a larger way!
So... when can we expect it all?
We are aiming to release Flood around June of 2018, we'd like to tie it in with the pride to ensure a larger reach and give it more traction.
For rewards, you'll be receiving them periodically over the next year. The more everyone pledges the more opportunities we have to share all the details with you.
So now I think that's it! As promised, here's my first performance in Seattle. I covered Bryan John Appleby's, Honey Jars. Thank you all so much for your support, I'm very excited for the next month and I hope you are too.
Risks and challenges
The biggest risk of this project is behind me, moving out to Seattle on a dime to pursue my dream of becoming a musician was by far the biggest risk I have ever faced. To ensure I didn't fail, I worked myself to death these last few years to ensure I was financially comfortable. I took on jobs far greater than my abilities and learned to work them, I spoke to mentors and colleagues to ensure I was on the right track to make myself successful. Music is not something I do on the side, it's not even a career, music is my life.
My drive for a successful life is why I'm confident about tackling any challenges that come up. My love for music keeps me motivated and thinking even when the challenges seem impossible to overcome. Perhaps the biggest risk I'm taking here is finding the project unsuccessfully funded.
But what would be the biggest risk you're taking when contributing to this project? Well, deadlines may get pushed back since this is a year long project with many moving parts. You may be asked to wait an additional week to receive your reward, but rest assured all the rewards have been calculated to ensure they can be fulfilled.
You have my full confidence in ensuring this project will go as smoothly as possible.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (23 days)