Nine months in and what a month you were, March.
I turned 25. I welcomed my quarter-life with both ease and anxiety — ease in the sense of peace of where I am in my journey, and anxiety in that I don’t know who to share it with. With new people and new places, it’s always difficult to find your place, but I’ve tried my best to stay positive in the process. I’ve expanded my network like crazy; I’ve reached out and have been touched by friends’ words of support, encouragement, guidance and pure belief in me. I’ve picked apart brains and went out on the scene for new people and opportunities.
It’s almost like I’m always searching, but I don’t know what for.
A big shift I felt this month was in regaining control of myself and my life through actively putting myself out there in the opportunities and spaces I felt I could grow and learn, while pulling back from the people, places and individuals I felt were holding me back.
In the past nine months since my move, I’ve been incredibly energetic, ambitious and determined (and maybe a little stubborn). The perfectionist in me kicks in and I feel the need to always be working and doing something. Even as I’m in-between jobs, I’m constantly running and driving from show to show to concert to writing opportunity to feeding myself, that I hear myself saying, “Slow down!” I would wake up everyday ruminating over how to spend my day more than actually doing something — and I recognized that it’s because a part of me feels very much out of my element.
My recent, unexpected and unannounced trip back home was just what I needed. Sometimes, we all need a little getaway or escape from the noise to refresh and recharge — to regain perspective, remind us of who we were before everything ever started, why we moved, why we left or even just to hear our own voice again.
In the past few weeks leading up to my return home for Easter, I’ve been recognizing how attached, grown and obsessed I’ve been with particular artists and songs — new artists I fell in love with, who perhaps were writing the songs I wish I wrote or saying the things I wish I said (or maybe even just made me fall in love with music all over again).
I asked myself, “Why do I get so obsessed with these songs and artists?”
My dear artist manager/music friend who I’ve kept in contact with because I’m a big fan of supporting his band (my boys from The Millennial Club, who I featured in my last vlog) invited me out to their first House of Blues, Anaheim gig. The show also doubled as an opening for “Rabbi Miles” (a.k.a. the hidden name for pop artist Charlotte Lawrence, who needed a fake name to be able to rehearse her live set before a bigger gig later that week). I didn’t think much of her at the time, but when she played to a full room and only expected five and no one to know her music, her song “Sleep Talking” was so incredibly infectious it got stuck in my head and my mind for days.
“Rabbi Miles did a number on you,” my friend said to me, as I pretty much Instagram story-ed myself shamelessly jamming to her songs in my car an entire week.
View this post on Instagram
I found my 3 new favorite female pop artists at Spotify’s #LouderTogether event this past weekend, and it blew my MIND. 🎵 @ninanesbitt, @charlotteslawrence and @sadgirlsloan each took the stage at @residentdtla and reinspired my love of music, songwriting and damn emotional pop songs in such an intimate room. . Here’s a 1-minute teaser of my live video blog of their performance, but you can watch the full video and writeup at rachelannc.com or in my bio link. See why I am absolutely reeling over these girls, and why you should be falling in love, too 💛 . @spotify #spotify #spotifysingles #spotifysinglesep #ninanesbitt #charlottelawrence/#rabbimiles #sashasloan #psychopath #justthesame #sleeptalking #readyyet #bestyouvehad #loyaltome #somebodyspecial #pop #popmusic #femalepop #femalemusicians #newartists #breakoutartists #newmusic #womenshistorymonth #saturdaynight #residentdtla #dtla #losangeles #vlog #rachelannc
He also told me about a Spotify event that weekend (the same day as my first race which, by the way, after a year of running I am incredibly hooked and cannot wait for the next!), which featured three independent female pop artists breaking out on Spotify today — Nina Nesbitt, Charlotte Lawrence and Sasha Sloan. Spotify put on their industry “Louder Together” event in celebration of the first Spotify Singles EP with “Psychopath” from the girls.
Long story short: I was on an incredible high from that day and night and got even more hooked to Charlotte and discovered my new girl crush on Nina (you can watch/listen to me gush in my vlog here). From there, I’ve been blessed with incredible opportunities and meetings with people who have been opening doors for me (and even attending an exclusive Hayley Kiyoko event in celebration of her debut album Expectations, ’cause I’m still so hooked on “Feelings”).
Since then, I’ve been really listening to these internal pulls I feel inside of myself — those gentle reminders of why and how much I love music, my undeniable obsession with heartfelt lyrics, honest writing and incredible musicianship. I’ve been surrounded by a community of storytellers and filmmakers that I realized just how much more at home I feel in music. Doing my music journalism is all fun and exciting and allows me to connect with artists and fans and share a collective experience (one of the key traits of happiness, I might add), yet, I’ve always been a writer. I’ve always been a musician. I’ve always sought out creative expression that when I treat myself as a mule for music and concerts and shoots, a part of me feels suffocated.
It’s great to have people in your circle who are able to see and remind you of who you are, who you were and who you’ve always been.
While home, I’ve been able to silence the noise and listen to my own voice again (just the simple excitement of being home for the first time in four months and feeling the fresh air, the greenery and scenery was inspiring enough). Having a home in two places is something I am so grateful for. And more than leaving my worries behind, I feel I’ve finally made peace with them. My heart and emotions have grown tired that I’ve rediscovered myself — my power, voice and the incredible life of opportunities in front me, waiting for me to take them.
View this post on Instagram
@jesssbarnard had this brilliant idea of doing a collab — and I’m loving this! I think we’ve started a new girl band. Who wants in? 🎶 P.S. besides singing, Jess is also an incredibly inspiring runner and woman. Go check her out! #timeoftheseason #thezombies #cover #acoustic #guitar #vocals #music #femaleband #collab
It’s been fun to rediscover and reinspire myself again. I’ve been writing again and my little “songwriting retreat” home has never felt better. I’ve been able to reconnect with those who align with my heart, mind, body and soul; realize the community and opportunities around me as we see we’re all in this together; I’ve been able regain focus to write, play and be a little more creative; and heck — even just see how much fun life is when I’m doing the things I want, with the people I love and creating those relationships I so much seek in my life!
I think I’ve finally come to a place where I’m a lot less worried about the outcome and can work, live and trust the pieces to come together when they will (I kind of lost myself there for a sec, didn’t I?). I’m still on a journey to discovering and finding those roots, my community, my tribe and my people but, I know who I am and I know what I want — and I think that’s the most important part.
Be patient. It’s time to bloom.
Look back at my March below, as told through Nina Nesbitt’s “Somebody Special” (because seeing her live and hearing her tell the stories behind her songs just got me in the heart; never have songs about life, love and relationships been more relevant). ❤
P.S. Copyright blocked the original version of this song so I had to use an acoustic stripped down version. Completely changed the vibe, but did not feel like re-editing. (Ha!) Enjoy!
With love and honesty,
View my past video blogs below:
Forever On The Road
One Sky, Six Months
Looking For You, Five Months In
Quarter Month Crisis
Third Month’s the Charm
I Adjusted Month Two
I Survived One Month
View this post on Instagram
I only meant to be home for two days. Two is quickly turning into ten and I’ve been riding high on this inspiration! 🤘 Sometimes you need to quiet the noise to freshen your perspective and remember why you do what you do, and even just hear YOUR own voice again (yeah, that sounds cliché LA). I’m really digging this. More soon (and yup, back with the #shamelessselfie)! #happymonday #mondaze #perspective #productivity #inspiration #home #travel #ontheroad #latothebay #writing #recording #retreat #space #headspace #write #create #lightyourfire #rachelannc