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Winter is here. 

Time to cuddle up and buckle down.

The coronavirus pandemic has changed everything for all of us, but it hasn't all been for the bad. Yes, I've been frustrated and heartbroken by all the crumbling of best-laid plans. I mean, every single one of my tours got pushed indefinitely or cancelled in 2021. Every. Single. One. 
Yikes.  
But it also became an opportunity to rest and to grow.  
All the cancelled gigs meant that I had more time to spend in the studio, exploring different types of creativity, doing more voiceover work. And I've come to love it more than ever. So I am currently expanding my production possibilities.  
I've been laying low on social media, but that's not cause for concern. The quiet is just a cocoon for the exciting things to come.

Beautiful moments in 2020 

 

There were many highlights and small joys in 2020, despite all the hurdles and disappointments the year held. This moment was one of those bright spots.

One day in the height of summer, I got a message from Thomas, who invited me to an evening video session in Berlin. I took him up on his offer. Within 15 hours, I had written and recorded this song, all sparked by his message and the lovely filming experience he set up.

I woke up that morning and sat on a balcony overlooking the capital city, sipping coffee and listening to the sounds of the neighborhood waking up. It was several months into the pandemic and I was just beginning to realize the extent of my losses and how many more blows were likely yet to come. As always when I am struggling with any emotion, my guitar, a pen, and paper became the key to letting it all go. I thought about my years in Berlin, the spirit of the once-divided city, and the times we were all living through as I picked up my guitar. My fingers quietly began searching for patterns that resonated with my mood. I began to hum as the sun started to press its way through the clouds, and my pen began to scratch words into my notebook. This is the song that came together there, during this pandemic, in the heart of a city that managed to put itself back together after being ripped apart.

That evening I sat on the banks of the Spree River and watched the Berlin Cathedral become a silhouette as the sun set. I saw people with masked faces meander by, their smiling eyes and muffled laughter showing a hundred different happy moments. The air was warm, the lights of the city rose to greet the darkening sky, and I met Thomas.

As we set up our equipment, we talked about the times, our lives, and our art; it was such an easy moment of connection - one that probably never would have happened if this virus hadn’t thrown our lives into disarray. A new friendship, a new song, a new beginning, all opportunities that popped to the surface when the world turned upside-down. And, thanks to Thomas’ talent, we were able to capture that moment and share it with you now. Watching this reminds me of the thousands of small joys that I had this year, and that if a whole city can rebuild itself after being blown apart, I will be able to put all of my shattered plans back together when this is all over. They will be different, but they will be beautiful. Here’s to 2020 - a year of hard lessons and small joys. And here’s to all the wonderful potential that 2021 holds. Happy New Year!

"Berlin" is a song I wrote in midst of the coronavirus pandemic about healing. This version was filmed and recorded live on the banks of the Spree River in Berlin by Thomas from Night LIVE Sessions.

Old is gold 

I found this old one in my archives. :-D Happy holidays!

 

A favorite by Dar Williams 

This song by Dar Williams has long been a favorite of mine because it approaches a complex topic with such sweetness and humanity.

 

Stephanie's music streaming on 38 stations 

Backstage - die NewcomerShow has a new format: Happy Hour! And Stephanie will be featured as an artist on Sunday June 21, 2020. She'll also be in the group's Facebook chat during the stream - click the button below to hang out with her! 
Listen to the stream here: 

BackStageFM - https://laut.fm/backstagefm 

PopRadio NRW - https://laut.fm/popradionrw 

HitArena NRW - https://www.phonostar.de/online_player/channel/37592l 

Illertal FM - http://illertal.fm/ 

Hits4You FM - https://hits4you.fm/ 

BeatsFM - https://beatsfm.de/ 

Radio4Life - www.radio4lif.de 

HFM - https://www.hit-fox-music.de/news.php

Stephanie featured on Backstage - die Newcomershow! 

May 2020: Video of the week

Stephanie's cover of the "Eye in the Sky" is the featured video on the Backstage website all week starting on June 6, 2020! This clever commentary on privacy in the age of the Internet is an amusing music video showcasing Stephanie as a one-woman band. Watch the video here:

 

A deadly source of inspiration 

COVID19 Kills SXSW but Sparks Wave of Creativity Among Musicians Who are Forced to Cancel Gigs

Coronavirus has not only been infecting people for months now, it has also been infecting industry and culture. Quarantines, cautionary measures and panic have not only slowed the economy, they've also caused the cancellation of concerts, tours and now even popular festival events like SXSW 2020. 

But even in a time when musicians are starting to feel real financial impacts from the fallout of COVID19, there appears to be a silver lining. Less time touring means more time to fiddle around in the studio. 

The Internet is now bursting with funny songs about hand-washing and amusing commentaries and song parodies about the virus – even as parody master Weird Al Yankovic declared on Twitter that he would not be updating his parody of "My Bologna" to "My Corona." 

We need to give serious thought to both public and our own personal health, be considerate of those who have lost loved ones, and sympathetic to the plight of working musicians and everyone else losing work due to the situation. But a little levity never hurt. As a wise man once said "laughter is the best medicine". 

Now go wash your hands, stop hoarding masks and toilet paper, and listen to some great versions of My Corona... er, I mean My Sharona.