Hello Everyone! This is Frank (aka "Johnny Bravo" to my friends) and I'm so excited to finally being ready to launch this new music!
I was told to share with you a little about me...where I come from...where I am...and where I want to go...with your help. Well....here you go!
I grew up in Ferndale, Washington, outside of Seattle. While I played football in both high school & college, I discovered my talent, passion and future while goofing off in chorus class during my junior year of high school. The professor was getting cranky because we were goofing off and said "All right you clowns....I want you to sing this song while pretending you are opera singers. Let's see what you've got!". I will never forget that moment...I was confused and stumped because the only opera sound or song I could think of was BUGS BUNNY singing "Kill Da Wabbit...Kill Da Wabbit!!". So there you are....I channeled my inner Elmer Fudd....opened my mouth....and blasted away. My own jaw wasn't the only one in the room on the floor....everyone was looking at me and all I kept thinking was....Where did THAT come from? Right then and there, I realized I was not going to be a football star...
I was going to be an OPERA SINGER!
My mother took extra jobs cleaning people's homes for my singing lessons with my first voice teacher Margot Israels. I bagged groceries and did whatever I had to for achieving my needed funds for lessons and school. I was blessed to have graduated from Whitworth University where I then studied with Marjory Halvorson and then on to Oberlin Conservatory of Music where I studied and was personally mentored by the great vocal pedagogue Dr. Richard Miller. From there...with my wonderful sponsors who are cherished extended family, Sherri & Frank Knott, my career took off!
I was performing in major baritone roles around the United States, Canada and Europe. I even had the privilege of singing for Pavarotti and winning his World Voice Competition and was actually invited to study with him for a summer at his home in Italy. I sang with some of the great operatic stars in our modern times. It was amazing, surreal and wonderful....but something was missing. Operas are exciting to perform because they are challenging and difficult. Exactly like an Olympic athlete trains for that one moment of glory...an opera singer trains all year for those 3-4 days of performances. The challenge satisfied all of my senses, but my soul was unfulfilled so in 2007, I walked away from my career.
While I appreciate and enjoy opera and classical music....I deeply love and live for the classic pop standards of the 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond. Think Cole Porter, Irving Berlin, Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Dean Martin, Andy Williams, Elvis and more. I also love country music!! While I appreciate "new" country music....my soul comes alive for the classic country crooners like Ray Price, Hank Williams, George Jones, Kenny Rogers, Patsy Cline, Ray Charles Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson and their contemporaries. So how do I combine my love of a vocal challenge with the sounds that stir my soul?
It took me 5 years....and some incredible folks in the music industry to help me begin to make my dreams---but more importantly---my SOUL come back to life. So here we are...about to do something no one has done before....in a genre of music that is barely 10 years old but the hottest music all over the world and rapidly gaining fans and respect in the United States: Popera!.
The incomparable Fred Mollin, Award Winning Producer (and a lot of other hats), is steering at the helm of this ship we are launching. Fred has produced legendary artists such as Jimmy Webb, Johnny Mathis, America, JD Souther, BB King, Kris Kristofferson etc.... Also, throughout the years he has worked on projects for/with such artists as Barbara Streisand, Billy Joel, Vince Gill, Jackson Browne, Lucinda Williams, Johnny Mathis, Chris Cornell of the band Soundgarden....and the list goes on and on. Fred is really really excited about our concept which makes me even more thrilled and excited! We are combining the best of the classic Pop and Country crooner sounds with a modern "Popera" twist - there is nothing else like it!
This is where we really need your help!! Our goal is to raise enough money for an EP and eventually, for a full record production. I very humbly ask you to consider helping with a donation in any amount you can spare. Any amounts achieved above what we are seeking will go towards a larger production with more musicians hired and more songs produced. Your donation will not only support hard working musicians, it will support the dreams of many!
I will be videotaping our recording journey (as much as possible) to keep you close during the production, so you may watch for yourself as we do something in Nashville that has never been done before, that will hopefully be heard around the world. The EP is tentatively titled "Turned On".
Following my heart...believing in the music of my Soul...watch as I get Turned On again in the world of music!
Thank you...AGAIN....for taking a moment to learn about me and the project we are working on....and with your help....launching upon the world this year.
Risks and challenges
When it comes to Risks & Challenges, we all know they are there and will present themselves throughout our Life. Let me just say....that come hell or high water....this album WILL happen and it will get finished and presented to all of our donors.
As for potential challenges, we may face some logistical issues with distribution or execution of donation rewards....but nothing will stop them from happening to everyone's satisfaction. That is my commitment to you.
The only risk I foresee is death and I've decided to not plan on that happening...at least until the album is finished and God maintains me on his calendar for living.
You are helping to fund a dream come true....and a sound that will change not only my soul....but hopefully yours and those you love, too.
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