About this project
(Versión en español abajo)
I am so grateful for your interest in taking part in the process of releasing this new album!
Thank you so much for taking the time to check out my campaign. This project means so much to me, a LOT of love was put into this work. I just can't wait to share these songs with you.
THE SHORT STORY
I finished recording my second album and I need your help to release it out into the world!
Last year I had the honor of receiving a grant from Women's Audio Mission, a non-profit organization and recording studio, the only professional recording studio in the world built and run entirely by women!
The recording and mastering of this album was made as a part of Women's Audio Mission's Local Sirens & Preserving Culture projects which are made possible by the generous support of The California Arts Council and The Zellerbach Family Foundation.
I decided to make an album of traditional Mexican songs that I learned as a little girl from my grandmother and uncles during my visits to their little farm town in Mexico. Recording these songs were my way of remembering and honoring the land where I was born and raised, the land I haven't been able to go back to for over a decade now (read more about that story in the next section below). The good news is, I will finally be able to travel to Mexico in a few months. I see this record as a small offering to bring to my homeland on my return home.
The artists that collaborated on this project (including my mother on vocals!) are some of my favorite people. I'm incredibly proud of this work and I just can't wait to share it with you!
Through this campaign, I'm asking for your help to be able to release this record, inviting you to:
- Pre-order the album through this campaign, or
- Pledge and choose some of the other rewards that I'm offering.
- Share this project with your friends and family
Your contributions will help me cover the costs not included in the grant, such as musician fees, licensing, pressing, designing and eco-printing and packaging of the album.
With your help, I will release a beautiful record that you will be proud to have been a part of. Thank you so much for your love and support!
Infinite love and gratitude,
THE INTIMATE STORY
I am a singer, songwriter, guitarist, composer and music instructor. Originally from Ciudad Juarez, México, I have been living in the Untied States for over a decade. Life in my adoptive land has given me many joys and lessons that I hold in my heart, dearly.
The first time I emigrated to the United States I was still a teenager and moved away without my parents, to go live with an aunt in Michigan. My life changed forever. Moving away from my homeland, from the familiar, from my native tongue, changed the way I saw and felt everything. I was grateful for all the good things I was experiencing and was also able to experience for myself what it really meant to live in the United States as an immigrant.
After many years and despite all my efforts to legalize my permanent status in the new country, I became undocumented. Living in a foreign land, not only as an immigrant but an undocumented one, gave me a new perspective on my own life and the lives of others. I found myself connecting with people whose immigration stories were far more complicated than mine and at times, even painful. I began to resonate with a broader reality. My new perspectives on life and the stories of others filled me with inspiration to write songs that would eventually lead me to release my first album, Eterno Retorno, a few years later.
I went to music school in Michigan and after receiving my degree, I moved to California to become a full-time musician. Ever since this last move, I have had the incredible opportunity to collaborate with amazing musicians and ensembles, including the San Francisco Symphony, the Oakland East Bay Symphony, Patrick Wolff, the Magik Magik String Quartet, Los Dreamers, Natalia Lafourcade, to name a few. I have shared the stage with Gaby Moreno, Ximena Sariñana, Bebel Gilberto, La Santa Cecilia among others, and I have participated in countless events that promote and fight for social justice. In 2014 I received the Emerging Leader Award by the Chicana/Latina Foundation for my work in music and for my support to immigrant's rights movements.
Five years ago, I adjusted my status and in a few months, I will receive the last official U.S. document I need to travel outside the country. I will be going to Mexico for the first time in fifteen years to visit my childhood home in Ciudad Juarez where my family still lives.
Amidst the many unknowns and feelings that come up as my return to the homeland gets closer, there is one feeling that brings me to a place of peace, and that is the feeling of gratitude. Gratitude for the opportunity to go back, for the lessons I have learned while being away and for the countless gifts and expressions of love I have received in my adoptive land.
Receiving a grant to record this new album is one of those gifts that I cherish deeply. The songs I was able to bring to life, thanks to this grant, are songs that have kept the spirit of my land alive throughout my life as an immigrant. They are now warming me up to the folclore, the sounds, the landscapes, the smells, and the embraces I will be able to experience when I go back to Mexico. These songs will accompany my return and will serve as humble offering to bring to my country. It will be my way of saying:
I have returned. Please forgive my absence. I know it's been a long time but I have not forgotten about you. I think about you everyday. I brought you a gift, fruit of the seeds I planted on another land. I do not expect these songs to make up for all the times I didn't sing under your sky or for all the times I wasn't there to fight for you and console you as you went through some of the most difficult times a country can go through. I don't expect these songs to heal your wounds, nor to heal mine, nor to heal anything. These songs are simply a symbol of my love. I sang them with you in mind, always with you in mind. I missed you, as you have no idea and I am so incredibly happy to be back.
EVERYTHING YOU WANT TO KNOW ABOUT THE NEW ALBUM AND THIS CAMPAIGN
1. What is Women's Audio Mission?
Women's Audio Mission is a non-profit organization and recording studio, the only professional recording studio in the world built and run entirely by women.
They train over 1,200 women and girls every year to become the next music producers and recording engineers. Here's what some rad and important people are saying about them:
Women's Audio Mission has a proven track record of deploying innovative programs that leverage information and communication technology to benefit women and vulnerable communities in California..." — NANCY PELOSI, Democratic Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives
"Over the past 40 years the Kronos Quartet has recorded in the finest studios in the world, and I can unequivocally state that it is always a pleasure to record our projects at Women's Audio Mission." — DAVID HARRINGTON, Kronos Quartet
"Despite all the women singers you can think of, less than 5% of the people working in the field of music production & recording arts are women—Women's Audio Mission is changing that, one student at a time." — SUSAN BARNETT, NPR Host
Now you can understand how grateful and honored I am to have received a grant by this incredible organization!
Working with Kelley Coyne (my engineer), Terri Winston (the founder), and all the rad women who assisted on our sessions, was a beautiful experience that surpassed my expectations. The love and warmth I experienced in their presence made the sessions feel so deep, heartfelt and magical. After our six days working together, I felt I had made a new family. I will be forever grateful for such an amazing gift.
2. What is this album about?
This album contains eleven traditional Mexican songs that I learned as a little girl, and one surprise track. The songs I chose are very melodic, sweet, and some have an intimate lullaby feel to them.
These tunes I chose take me back to my childhood and to the times when my enormous beautiful Mexican family would get together in my grandparents' small farm town, Torreoncito, eight hours south of Ciudad Juárez, my hometown. Thinking back to this time, I can almost hear the voice of my abuelita singing these songs in her little ranchito; the sound of my uncle's guitars and voices harmonizing to her melody; the sound of my own guitar slowing down everybody's beat because I was still learning how to play; and the sounds of dogs, cows and chickens on the background adding texture to our music.
I chose these songs to pay tribute to my first music "school". To honor the place where I first experienced the magic of making music just for the love of music.
To honor the life in the fields and the legacy of my ancestors, and to show reverence to the sacred power and beauty of family traditions.
3. Which Mexican songs are on this album?
- Amorcito Corazón
- Cucurrucucú Paloma
- Dos Arbolitos
- (Surprise track)
- La Llorona
- Tierra Lejana (medley)
- Hay Unos Ojos
- Deja que Salga la Luna
- Rayando el Sol
4. Who are the artists involved?
The original idea was just to record alone with Patrick Wolff but the project evolved to having some of my other favorite people playing on this record. I played guitar and piano and my featured guests are:
- Patrick Wolff - clarinet, tenor saxophone
- Altagracia Estupiñan (my mother!) - vocals
- Magik*Magik String Quartet - directed by Minna Choi
- Thomas Edler - upright bass
- Helen Newby - cello
- Danny Cao - trumpet
Andrew Maguire - vibraphone
Helen Newby in action:
Thomas Edler in action:
Patrick, Kelley and I listening back:
Warming up for "Gorrioncillo":
5. Who produced this album and who are the engineers?
I produced and was the artistic director of the album. Kelley Coyne was the recording and mixing engineer, assisted by Women's Audio Mission E Allan, Nora McDonough, Maira Clancy, June Hong, Meradith Hoddinott, Sarouna Msa, and Angela Sarakan. Piper Payne is the mastering engineer.
6. How did you record these songs?
We only had three days to record and three days to mix, so I chose to make this, more or less, an acoustic album. I accompanied myself on guitar and piano and I have one or two guest artists/ensemble accompany me for each song.
Patrick Wolff (clarinet and tenor sax) and I recorded live - that means, we recorded the songs we were playing together as if we were performing them in front of an audience. Patrick and I have been performing together for many years now, so I wanted to stay true to the emotion and feeling of our live performances.
The song I recorded with my mother talks about the eyes of someone you love, so we had to record this together. My mother is the person I love the most in this world, so what greater inspiration than to sing this while looking at her beautiful face!
For the rest of the songs I recorded vocals and guitar at the same time and then added the other instruments and the string quartet.
Usually, these songs I chose are sung by other artists with more of a "mariachi" voice so I wanted to create something different and sing these songs in my sultry "Diana Gameros" voice (that's how people have described it) that would sound intimate but meaningful and emotional at the same time.
I composed all the song arrangements and Minna Choi composed the string quartet arrangements.
7. Who is doing the artwork for the album?
I am obsessed with collage art! I will use that medium for the new artwork.
I couldn't help to commission Max-o-Matic. I worked with him on my previous album, Eterno Retorno, and I was blown away by his professionalism but most importantly, by his sensitivity. I remember crying when he shared the final image of my last record. It felt as though he had dove into my mind and heart and swam there for hours, to absorb every detail of the images and emotions I envisioned for the artwork.
There are deep feelings I want to evoke with the artwork of this new record, I couldn't think of a better person to do this than Max.
8. How Does Kickstarter Work?
This is how it goes: you donate to my project and I in return give you a reward.
My project gets funded if and only if the entire amount is raised. Money is not actually taken from anyone's bank account until the full $5,600 goal is reached or surpassed. If we do not get at least $5,600 pledged by the deadline, we will not receive any of the pledged money, everybody keeps their cash and we can't release this record. This is why spreading the word among your friends and getting the pledge right now is so important for the campaign!
9. What are the rewards?
One of my favorite parts about doing a Kickstarter campaign is the opportunity to directly thank you by offering unique gifts and experiences at every funding level. Here's what I'm offering this time:
- Personal shout outs to you on my Twitter and Facebook.
- LIMITED QUANTITY! Personal Las Mañanitas B-Day video shout outs posted on FB
- Digital downloads of the new album.
- Signed hard copies of the new album for you and for your friends.
- Signed hard copies of the new and previous album.
- Signed copies of piano sheet music for "Gorrioncillo".
- LIMITED QUANTITY! Handwritten Lyrics.
- LIMITED TIME ! Your name on the liner notes, to live forever on the album.
- LIMITED TIME! Tickets to attend an intimate VIP listening party in the Bay Area (date TBA), to listen to the new album surrounded by artists and music industry humans, before the record comes out to the public.
- LIMITED QUANTITY!! Guitar lessons with me at my studio, to learn any of the songs or guitar styles I play.
- LIMITED QUANTITY! House or Private Concerts Check out all these rewards right there --------------------->
10. Why are you doing a Kickstarter campaign?
A crowdfunding campaign gives me an opportunity to connect with you, my fans, friends and family on a different, more personal level.
I did a Kickstarter campaign (a successful one!) for my previous record and I fell in love with the whole process. There is a lot of work involved in it but it is all very rewarding. The expressions of love I received, through financial donations or emotional support, do not compare to all the help I could get from a label. I believe in and love the power and magic of community.
It is priceless to experience people come together to bring a project they believe in and that you created, out into the world.
The grant I received from Women's Audio Mission covered the fees for studio, recording, mixing and mastering engineers. But there are lots of costs aside from that. I am an independent artist (that means, I do not have a label who finances my career) and as such, all my costs either come out of my pocket or are paid by grants that I receive. Your contributions will help me cover the costs not included in the grant.
11. Where will the funds go?
Your contributions will help me cover the costs NOT included in the grant:
- USD $1,800 - Musician Payments
- USD $2,300 - Pressing and eco-printing and packaging of the CD, designer fees.
- USD $1,500 - Kickstarter sourcing and assembling rewards, Kickstarter fees, etc.
12. What happens if you don't raise all the money?
If we do not get at least $5,600 pledged by the deadline, we will not receive any of the pledged money, everybody keeps their cash and the official release of this record gets prolongued.
If I can't get 560 people to donate at least $10, I might consider moving to a farm in Tomales Bay and sing my Mexican melodies to a new audience that does very much seem to appreciate my work:
13. What happens if you exceed your goal?
I will go do a happy dance with the cows and say a gratitude prayer in the woods! Exceeding the goal would be so awesome. Depending on the amount, I would be able to do some of the following:
- Release a little "making of" documentary
- Feed you at the VIP Listening Party
- Do a solo/duo/trio tour on the West Coast or East cost
- Do a solo/duo/trio tour to Mexico
- Do a Schools/Universities national tour to share my music and story
- Commission a visual artist for the CD Release Concert
- Hire extra musicians to accompany me on CD Release Concert
- Film a music video
14. What happened with the album of originals songs that you were going to produce with Natalia Lafourcade?
Last August, Natalia and I spent five beautiful days in Stinson Beach, California, working on phase one of our collaboration. This was a magical time to get to know each other, filled with music playing and many beautiful musical and non-musical conversations.
Unfortunately, our calendars have not coincided as we both have been working on projects that have consumed all of our time so we've put this project on pause. We have a beautiful connection so I'm hoping to resume as soon as our times align!
15. What can I do to help if I can't give money?
You've done so much already by reading this far!
You can spread the word about this campaign or about my music with your friends and family, share my campaign on social media. Just spreading the word is a beautiful and meaningful way to help!
Here are some posts that you may find helpful and you can just copy and paste:
On Facebook: Friends! Diana Gameros just finished recording a sweet new album of traditional Mexican songs! Help her bring this album out into the world by pre-ordering the CD or pledging for cool rewards through her Kickstarter Campaign! http://kck.st/2qHFr0x
On Twitter: New album by Diana Gameros! Pre-order CD or pledge for cool rewards through her KS campaign http://kck.st/2qHFr0x
No amount or support is too small, I'm grateful for anything you can give or do to bring this project to life!
I am happy to answer any other questions you may have about this process.
Do not hesitate to ask! You can do so by visiting my contact page at:
Thank you so much for considering donating to my project. I couldn't do this without you.
Much Love and flowery hugs from California,
>><<><< THANK YOU!! >><<><<
Versión en Español
Muchas gracias por su entusiasmo en ser parte del proceso de lanzamiento de mi nuevo álbum!
Les agradezco que se hayan tomado el tiempo de ver mi video y escuchar mi historia. Este proyecto significa mucho para mí, lo creamos con mucho amor. Hace unas semanas terminé de grabar mi segundo disco y necesito su colaboración para finalmente sacarlo a la luz. No puedo esperar a compartir estas canciones con ustedes!
El año pasado tuve el honor de recibir una beca para grabar en Women’s Audio Mission, una organización hermosa y estudio de grabación en San Francisco. WAM es el único estudio en el mundo construido y dirigido por mujeres! La grabación y masterización del álbum se realizó a través de un proyecto de preservación de cultura de Women’s Audio Mission’s Local Sirens, el cual se lleva a cabo gracias al generoso apoyo del Consejo para las Artes de California (The California Arts Council) y a la Fundación de la Familia Zellerbach.
Hace más de una década que no me es posible viajar a mi país, así que decidí producir un album con canciones mexicanas que aprendí cuando era niña, de mi abuela y de mis tíos durante mis visitas a Torroencito, un pequeño pueblito que queda a ocho horas de Ciudad Juárez. Elegí estas canciones para celebrar el país donde nací y crecí; para recordar mi primera "escuela" de música, ya que fue en Torreoncito donde experimenté por primera vez lo que significaba tocar música por el simple hecho de amar la música; para mantener vivos el legado de mis ancestros y la belleza de las tradiciones familiares.
Después de haber pasado por un proceso muy largo para ajustar mi estatus en este país, finalmente recibí el último documento que me permite salir de los Estados Unidos. Dentro de unos meses, y por primera vez en quince años, podré visitar México.
Son muchos los sentimientos y preguntas que brotan en mí mientras me preparo para este reencuentro con mi país. Después de tantos años, ¿cómo será mi regreso a Ciudad Juárez? A la casa que tanto echado de menos, ¿la volveré a sentir como "mi casa"?¿desconoceré lo que alguna vez conocí con inmenso detalle? ¿me sentiré, en cierta medida, fuera de lugar, así como me sentí al emigrar por primera vez a una tierra desconocida?
Entre toda la incertidumbre e infinidad de emociones que pueda sentir, hay un sentimiento que me devuelve a un estado de paz: el sentimiento de gratitud. Me siento inmensamente agradecida por la increíble oportunidad de volver, por todo lo que he aprendido al estar lejos y por los infinitos regalos y expresiones de amor que he recibido en mi tierra adoptiva.
Haber recibido la beca para grabar este nuevo disco es uno de esos regalos que agradezco profundamente. Las canciones a las cuales pude dar vida en esta grabación, son canciones que han mantenido el espíritu de mi tierra vivo dentro de mí, durante mi vida como inmigrante. Son ellas quienes me están preparando para el folclor, los sonidos, los paisajes, los olores y los abrazos que podré volver a experimentar al regresar a México. Estás canciones acompañarán mi viaje y me servirán de humilde obsequio para ofrecerlo a mi país. Será una forma de decir:
He regresado. Por favor perdona mi ausencia. Sé que he estado fuera de tus tierras por mucho tiempo pero no te he olvidado. Pienso en ti todos los días. Te traje un regalo, fruto de las semillas que planté en otra tierra. No espero que estas canciones sean suficientes para compensar todo el tiempo que no canté bajo tu cielo o todas las veces que no estuve ahí para pelear por ti y consolarte mientras vivías los momentos más difíciles que un país puede vivir. No espero que estas canciones curen tus heridas, o que curen las mías, o que curen nada. Estas canciones son simplemente un símbolo de mi amor. Las canté pensando en ti, siempre pensando en ti. Te extrañé demasiado y estoy inmensamente feliz de estar aqui.
Muchas gracias por leer mi historia, por ver mi video, por compartirlo con sus amigos, y por considerar apoyar mi campaña!
Las aportaciones que reciba de ustedes me ayudarán a cubrir los gastos no incluidos en la beca, la tarifa de los músicos, licencias musicales manufactura, diseño e impresión ecológica del disco.
Cualquier aportación es de extrema ayuda, estaré agradecida con lo que puedan hacer o donar para que este proyecto salga a la luz. Con su ayuda podré lanzar un disco hermoso del cual ustedes se sentirán orgullosos por haber apoyado.
Reciban todo mi amor y un fuerte abrazo, desde los campos floridos de California. Los quiero mucho,
>>>><¡ GRACIAS !<<>>><<
Risks and challenges
Any time we create something and want to bring it out into the world, there is a risk involved.
Right now, things are happening in the proper timeline there. But if for some reason I don't meet my goal via Kickstarter, the official release would have to be prolonged.
Having run a much bigger and successful campaign a few years ago when my network was smaller makes me feel confident that I continue to have the support of my community and together we will be able to bring this project to life!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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