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CAREERING INTO 40 MY MUM’S A POP STAR!

CAREERING INTO 40!

MY MUM’S A POP STAR.

This title is actually intended to become a novel, for the time being, let me start with the first transparent blog of my Pop Star career.  It’s not recommended or advised to promote being a mother / career woman until you are financially successful enough, but being a mum has been part of my journey and highlighted my childhood, my dreams and my gratitude it has given me the gumption to live life on my own terms and lead by example to my children whom I preach to all the time, you can do and be anything you want to and change your mind at any time, no rules!  Just follow your heart is what I tell them.

As a parent, I witness schools leading children to believe academia is a launching pad for our careers and I guess school did that for me indirectly with reverse psychology, because even though I hated education and any academic system as a child, I was also a naturally happy person and worked hard at being so in my adult life, especially in the tough times and it is tough when school labels you an under achiever and assumes you will amount to nothing, even though you are working and trying your butt off!  This naturally develops a low self esteem, depression and isolation, that most adults find it hard to shake!  Therefore, I believe that a combination of my miserable school years, being told I can’t and my innate ability to return to my natural happy state and prove that I can, allowed me to follow my passions, and do what brings me joy, this is what delivered my career, rather than me delivering it.

Being a mum of 3, my eldest 2 have been asked what they want to do for a career already at the age of 13! 13 people!  13 years on the planet and you are expected to make massive choices about your future, which is daunting enough, with out the narrow career choices we are presented with at school. In her TED talks Emilie Wapnick, beautifully expresses that the reason why we might not be able to choose just one goal is that many of us are “multipotentials” meaning that we might don many hats and master them or indeed invent new ones along the way.

Emilie certainly describes my childhood school days to a T, but more than that, most schools including mine and my children’s only celebrate the A star achievers and only focus your education at school.  If like me you you were blessed to have a rich and lusciously creative home life, provided by your parents, it could make you feel, as it did me, that the majority of my learning of life, through observing and being taught  by my parents and joining them in their passions and learning their skills, was ignored by school.  So much so, that I clearly remember my music teacher’s school report, stating – “Alexandra, can ‘barely’ clap along to a rhythm in keeping with the tempo and she just about manages to sing along to a melody with the rest of the class!” (Little did she know that I was grade 7 in piano and had passed grade 5 theory, sung and performed in choral harmonies with my mother’s Polish folk dance groups and in my father’s choirs since I had been born.

This sort of negative and blinded attention gave me a grave dislike of school, it seemed false and full of BS.  I made A level choices to try to find “one career path” and continue with further education, but I was so disillusioned with the academic world and felt I had so much more to explore of life before I committed to any choices, that I dropped out in my second year.  I moved out of home, found work, went travelling, made my own money while I travelled, allowed my creative impulses to take charge.  This meant that I designed and created costumes.  I made connections with people that had creative skills and could help make my visions a reality and through this I  effortlessly became a project manager.

When,  my social circle who had similar experiences all declared that they would return back to college and uni to complete their education, I was mortified!  Mainly because, I was afraid of being abandoned and couldn’t remotely fathom returning with them!  I had this sense that they all felt the calling to, ‘Grow up’ and I just didn’t want to.  My soul searching also acknowledged the fear of losing my creative play friends. I decided that the only thing left for me to do that would enable me to ‘grow up’ was to have children of my own.  After all, I had had the best training I could ever have by observing my own mother and as I was her play friend, my children could be mine.

So, one by one the children arrived and I was and am a very doting, applied and if I say so myself amazing mother! Now society might not consider mothering to be a career, which to me is outrageous, because ‘career women’ who are also mothers, employ other women to be live in nannies and house keepers.  Combined, these 2 job titles pull in an average salary of £75,000!  Which is nowhere close to what I as a ‘stay at home’ mother got from child maintenance.  Which only magnifies the miracles I have achieved in raising 3 up standing citizens.  However, with all this magnificent achievement, I still didn’t feel the sense of having ‘grown up’.

I hadn’t ever managed to pick just one career to specialise in and my pet hate was to be asked at parties, “So, what do you do?” I’ve had so many jobs, built and sold my own successful business, studied to be a teaching assistant, permaculture specialist, I’ve created and led a choir, I am a Director and secretary of a film industry firm and I perform all these duties while still managing to write, record, perform and grow my own business. So how do I answer the “what do I do” question?

I suddenly realised that my 40th was rapidly approaching and I asked myself in the manner of a school headmistress, “what have you achieved, Alexandra.” This is a summary of what I came up with:

  1. I have proven 16 years of commitment to my career as a mother and passed with honours!
  2. I have always been and still am a committed and loving daughter and sister.
  3. I have committed to always learning and growing from all relationships.
  4. I am a devoted and loving wife.
  5. I have explored my interest in permaculture and know i will pick it up in retirement.
  6. I have always followed my passion of writing and singing songs.
  7. I have indulged my visions of costume making and project managed their creations.
  8. I have explored making different genres of music with a variety of people.
  9. I have pursued my learning about the vastly transforming music industry, legally, and creatively.
  10. I have not allowed my fear of getting older stop me from living my dream.
  11. I am a self made pop star.
  12. I have always and still do work very hard at loving me.  #iLoveMee

And as I career through my 40’s and live the dream life of a modern day pop star, I encourage other people to follow their passions and work hard at loving the self, especially on the days when you’ve burned the dinner, you wake up wishing you had a different life, you’re bored of the sound of your own voice, “you know where you’re going but don’t know the way” (Mee And The Band – BreadCrumbs lyrics) …

Keep exploring life, because that is the real education that fulfils and inspires us with enthusiasm, that’s what made teachers wanna teach in the first place before they lost the will to love teaching.  Being an adult has got nothing to do with age, but it has everything to do with acknowledging your fear and hearing your heart sing, do not fear the joy I bring!” (Mee And The Band – I know I am Worth it)then doing what excites you even if it terrifies you.  Don’t judge yourself by your financial success, rather measure yourself by looking at what you’ve learned and adoring the courage it took to learn it.

Let’s make sure that at the end of our lives we all have some good stories to show and tell.

Magic Moments,

Mee And The Band

(AKA Alexandra)

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Sleeping Bag Studios Review our recent track “Keep it Simple”

Meena Kaye – “Keep It Simple” Featuring Mee And The Band – Single Review

This new single from Meena Kaye…has…SO MUCH working in its favor it’s tough to envision a path she’d end up on from this point forward that wouldn’t lead her to the success she’s looking for in music.  “Keep It Simple” is a multi-layered example of a giant melting-pot of ideas that keep everything we hear full of hooks from moment to moment – though I’d be the first to admit…they’re the kind of hooks that add such a fresh perspective you’ll latch onto one firmly before discovering the next.  Let me explain…

What might catch your attention first on your initial playing of “Keep It Simple” could certainly be the playful electro-vibe and the immediate attachment you form to the inviting, well-mixed and smartly produced sound of the smoothness in the music as it flows.  Expertly assembled, played & performed – “Keep It Simple” is a track that contains zero flaws; the energy in the music moves perfectly, allowing this collaboration between Meena Kaye and Mee And The Band to flourish not just in the music-department, but in all areas.  Like a reliable friend at the end of a rough Friday night – the music of “Keep It Simple” is ready to drive and keep the wheel steady to take this one home safely.

And for myself personally, that’s how it went…I noticed the vibrant sound and depth in the mix of the music immediately…but in those first moments you also have audible competition of equal caliber and quality that begins right away with the vocals as well.  As I’d mentioned earlier on, each moment of this song really does pack-in its own set of dynamics and hooks – the vocals are certainly included in that assessment.  The verse immediately kicks-in a seriously cool attitude and cadence to the tone that has an interesting mix of what I’d almost call more classic pop/rock style infused into the modern-day electro-style.  Something about this song has a real distinct influence in the writing that sounds like it contains real respect for where music has already come from – but more importantly, where it’s going next.  Through the inspired and insightful performance on the vocals in the chorus – you get that additional push straight into the modern-day entirely with an immaculately sung hook that wraps right around your mind with its incredibly memorable sound.  Nailed 100% – those vocals…are SO GOOD, brilliantly unique in their sound…and truly they are throughout the entire song whether it’s verse, chorus or in between; bottom-line is Meena Kaye along with Mee And The Band have established multiple access points for the masses with what they’ve put into their music and vocals on “Keep It Simple.”  The beautiful tones, the stylistic delivery, the confident & controlled performance that incorporates clever choices and bold courage to go where the music will take them – not a complaint to be made about the vocals on this tune, they’re gorgeous and wonderfully unique to listen to; background or lead – I love what I’m hearing  on “Keep It Simple.”

As IF you needed another major reason to check this song out – Meena Kaye & Mee And The Band have ensured victory here by keeping the focus sharp in every possible way…and that means lyrically as well.  I’d be the first to admit that as a music-reviewer, over the years I’ve certainly noticed that lyrics are generally the part of music in all-genres that require that additional strength to really hear the message, theme, or even just the amazing lines written by artists out there that fly-by as quickly as they do when you’re listening to music all the time like I end up doing.  Obviously clarity helps…the words of “Keep It Simple” are boldly put right out front in the mix, just enough to be a complete complement to the music and vice-versa…but that clarity allows us to absorb every beautifully sung word.  So while you might tune-in for the music, or for the vocals at first…believe me, eventually by that third or fourth listen you’ll also realize that every word is not just crystal-clear in delivery, style and mix – but also in its message.  Honestly some of the best words and most focused writing I’ve heard from point-A to point-B in a song throughout the past couple years for certain.  The opening hook that begins the song is absolutely brilliantly written…the subtle change in the wordplay there makes such a MASSIVE difference once you’ve gone on to absorb the entirety of the song and all the words have to offer.  “Keep It Simple” follows its own model and theme both in its words and music, but in all the right ways; you could examine the clarity of the expression here as ‘keeping it simple’ and straightforward so that it can’t possibly be missed…you could look at it as that they haven’t overcomplicated or stuffed this one too-full in any way, shape or form to misunderstand what this song is all about.  The social commentary that runs through the lyrics of “Keep It Simple” is truly astounding and stunning, all while keeping it coming from a personally-introspective perspective that I’ve no doubt, many people will relate to.  Not only are the words of “Keep It Simple” brilliantly focused and expressed – they’re important…in my opinion, there’s just about half of what you need to know in LIFE here in the lyrics of this song, if not more than half.  An anthem for the new generation…or at the very least, I’d hope so.

With a versatile rhythm somewhere in the midst of the sounds of artists like Lorde, Lily Allen, M.I.A. and Poe all blended together to create something atmospheric, hypnotic and amazingly satisfying – “Keep It Simple” absolutely works from the first moments to its very end…easily one of the most impressive, focused and entirely complete songs I’ve heard so far this year, without question.

Meena Kaye – “Keep It Simple” Featuring Mee And The Band

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Music Video Season

Bang!
Starting 2017 off with a blast of creativity,
making not just 1 but 4 music videos!
WhaaaaaT?!
Be prepared venues and promoters…
by end of February we’ll have 2 live performance videos
for us to nail all our bookings with!
We are also creating super exciting visuals
for the track BreadCrumbs off of our EP Mind Matters.
Expect, tricycles, unicorns and flowers and nothing less!
Super Power is the other track,
we will be pulling out all the special effects from our box of tricks,
to make this video the funnest revolution music video ever!
Keep a look out on our social media, instagram and FB
for behind the scenes shots and vids as we go!

 

 

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Lily Gabriella – Damali Collection

Thanks to Laura at The Detail

Mee Music was asked to provide a soundtrack to a fashion film that was used for a press day to show case the jewellry designer Lily Gabriella’s new collection ‘Damali’.

Not only was it an honour to be asked, we were also very grateful to be able to use one of David Ward’s productions off of the track called ‘Magnificence’ which we collaborated on.  A work which was created in 2014 and archived to be used at a later date…

This track is part of a new album being worked on for release in 2017 called ‘LOVE & LUST’

If you would like to view Lily Gabriella’s amazing new collection for yourself, click on this link…

Lily Gabriella – Damali

To watch the 60 second fashion clip featuring some of the images from Lily’s trip that inspired the collection and to listen to our track, click here Instagram Lily Gabriella

Once again thank you to Laura of The Detail, Phoebe at Facets PR and Lily Gabriella, Mee Music was proud to contribute to such deluxe artistry.

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Mind Matters EP is created!

mm-cover-visual

Ryan Omamori and I spent the first 6 months of this year completely inspired and working hard at our vision to create an EP to give people a taster of the album that’s to come!

It’s easy to forget how awesome we are you know and that goes for you too reader! Among holding down full time jobs, raising 5 children between us!!! nurturing our beloved’s and honouring our family time, we did it, we made a 5 track EP!

I am proud to show it off and proud to start to share it with the public, our hearts and souls have woven the sounds and lyrics. If you take the time to listen you’ll hear exactly what we sound like live!

Hope to see you at our next gig…if you have time to fashion your very own #CloudsOnSticks please do bring them along.

check out our neighbouring page for the new EP http://www.meemusic.co.uk/music/

You can also check out the tracks to some cool new music videos on the video page!

Have fun and we hope you enjoy listening as much as we did making them.

Magic Moments,

Alexandra and Ryan

aka Mee And The Band

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MIDEM 2016

midem

Can you imagine my excitement, travelling to Cannes for Midem 2016?

Went with no expectations just a handful of choice confirmed meetings, my ‘flying yellow welly-boot’ handbag, ‘paper cloud’ promo pack (of course) and wearing my “fun doesn’t even start to describe it” grin!

Met with Sony Publishing, who requested I send some Mee Music songs, after speaking at length about my desire for song placements.  (Got so many of them, just need to find them some homes/launch pads!)

Met with Metropolis publishing, sync and label and we are just prepping materials to send to the team as i type this post.

Made some über techy, new, super cool, life long friends from The ZYX who are working with Mee to provide an online merchandise shop for all you happy shopper FANS!  You are gonna love the merchandise people!

So watch this website space and FaceBook for the launch of the Mee And The Band shopping Stand…(or some such name, we’re working on that too!)

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The venue was huge and excellently well organised.  The sandy beach and yacht-parking harbour, a stones throw away, i did manage to swim in the sea which was soooo warm!

The sun was out, the rain poured down all the while I relished in the adventure.  Saw some fantastic acts, went to some Duracell battery after parties, (that could sound dodgy, but I meant the parties went on and on and on!).

Thank you to all those I met and i look forward to doing business with you soon.

midem 50th

 

 

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