News from Audrey-land! =)

Just a little update (waaay over due) from your favorite Audrey!

Woop Woop! I’m back in the UK, and one step closer to normal – i.e. LIPA, my piano and the new flat. It’s been nice to be home, to travel, and to relax, but to be honest, this holiday has been way too long already and I just want to get on with my second year already (or third, technically)…! Right now I am however in York, for my Lovely’s Birthday party tonight, and we are staying here until we can take over the flats in Liverpool in two weeks time. I. Can’t. WAIT!!

Another thing I’m really excited about, is that two of my all time favorite girlies are on their way here RIGHT NOW to join the party! Becky is in a car, half an hour away, and Dolly is in York, waiting for us to pick her up (which we can’t do till Becky gets here). I’m so excited to see them both – it’s been too long! ❤

Aaanyway – to the NEWS! 😉

Summer News:

I’ve mainly been in Norway this summer, but I’ve also had some time in the UK and South France, as you know. I haven’t been giving my music anywhere near as much time as I should have, but I’ve done plenty of other, exciting things.

Singing lessons…
Over the summer I have had two singing students, and they have both been absolute stars, and a joy to teach. I have had an overwhelming support from the local Culture School, who among other things let me use the dance room to teach in – look how huuuge it is!

Epiphany…
I also found (to my great joy) that teaching vocal technique actually makes me a better (technical) singer – I have crossed so many barriers over the last couple of months, and I am absolutely thrilled to start lessons with Ian again in September.

I am a business…
I have (finally) registered Audrey Wilsen Music as a business, and can now proudly call myself self-employed and independent. I do invoices and everything, it’s well good! 😀 So much to learn though, and I’m hoping I won’t screw up – ending up having to pay twice my income in taxes or something stupid like that…! I’m sure it will be fine, and I’m doing the only thing I can do – learning as I go along.

Songwriting workshops…
Another piece of exciting news, is that I’m going back to Norway for a few days in September, to – get this – do two songwriting workshops for local high school kids! I am so excited, and very very honored to even be considered for the job. I’m not sure how I’m gonna do it yet, because I’ve pretty much been given the freedom to set it up entirely as I wish, which is a massive (and wildly appreciated) sign of trust from the arrangers side. The workshops are gonna be a part of a music video project the Culture School in my home town are setting up, and my job will basically be to “light a spark” in these kids, and help them get creative and start writing some lyrics, which they will later down the line get help to make music for, record in a studio and in the end make a music video. Amazing! Man, I wish they had done stuff like this when I was in high school!!

Next Year News:

I have pretty much decided what next year might look like, if I get my way (which I will). My wish is to put together:

  1. A full band, consisting of the usual: Drums, bass, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, keys, backing vocals and maybe a bit of ‘synthage’ and some strings for special occasions.
  2. An acoustic mini band consisting of an acoustic guitar, a cajon and backing vocals – and probably keys as well.

Live…
Basically, I will rehearse pretty much the same set list with both bands, and play live as often as I can – with either of them. My main reason for having two bands is that I would definitely like to start gigging with a full band, but I would also very much like to do more smaller acoustic gigs in cafés and stuff, like the one I did at Café Sør in April. There is such a great mood in places like that, and it seems like people are generally more interested in chilling out and listening to the music, rather than getting drunk and talking loudly which is often the case with bigger concerts.

E.P Release…
I have pretty much decided to do the EP acoustically as well. Both because it will be easier (less people to depend on to make it happen, more flexibility with recording locations etc.), and because it will suit my music very well. The EP will probably be out around christmas time, and I will do a release concert at the Culture School’s youth café in Jevnaker in early-mid January. It’s gonna be schweet!

I should go see if I’m needed in the party preparation department – there’s a lot to do! Until next time, TAKE CARE! ❤

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Until next time, please remember to subscribe to my blog (top right corner of this page), “be-fan” me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter, and I will make sure to keep you up to date on what’s going on with me and my music. And please keep commenting, I love hearing from you! =) 

Take care & keep Shining! I love you!

xxx,

Audrey

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WOW, what a DAY! :-D

Like a star… I spent Thursday morning at my old high school, where I had been invited back as “Guest of the month” on their very last day before the summer holiday. It was awesome! It was such an honor to be invited, and the amazing introduction Signe gave me on stage made me feel like a star. It went something like this:

“Ten years ago, a girl was a student at this school. And that girl was very brave. She moved away from home, to Vinstra, to study what she wanted to. This girl has continued to be brave, because now she has moved to England to study music at Paul McCartney’s Music school LIPA in Liverpool. Right now she is home for the summer, and we are very glad to have her as our guest of the month.”

And so on. I don’t remember exactly what she said, but I remember I was highly moved, and entertained.

20 Questions… First I was interviewed on stage by two students who had prepared 20 questions for me, and such good questions! They asked me stuff like what my best and worst memory from school was, why I started singing, what advice I could give them for the future, and it dawned on me… I am actually in a position to inspire these people…! Which is in fact the most inspirational thing in the world. So I tried my best, I tried to tell them what I needed to hear when I was their age and looked something like this:

Don't laugh...! ;-P

A bit of a Julie… I tried to tell them that it’s their life, and that it’s so freakin’ important to follow your dreams and do what YOU wanna do. Don’t listen to the people who tell you you can’t do it, cause they don’t know what they are talking about. Dare to say it out loud, what it is that you REALLY want to do with your life. It’s YOUR life, and only you can make yourself happy. It’s all about you. Not everyone is as lucky as I was – I had Julie to give me a kick in the ass. Not everyone has a Julie. So if I was a bit of a Julie to some of these guys on Thursday, if I got through and motivated one person to go for it and follow their dream, I am truly grateful. Finally taking the step onto that stage was what I answered that my best memory from school is. And the worst…? That one was harder. I have no real bad memories from school, so all I could think of was the day when I was “smart” enough to bring my Furby to an exam and it wouldn’t shut up… I was like “Fall alseep, damn it…!” 

Shut uuuuup...!!

Awesome, awesome people…! After the interview I performed two songs for them (Orion and The First Kiss Hello Since Goodbye), and they were, I think, the most awesome audience I’ve ever had. It was so nice to get some response on the things I said! It was all very relaxed and fun, and I wish I had more time with them. Awesome, awesome people! =)

Hihi...

I also really, really wish I had some pictures from the performance/interview, so if any of my new friends at the school who took pictures or filmed are reading this, (I saw you guys!)  please send me pictures and videos! =) audrey.wilsen@gmail.com. Until then, here’s me on my way home with the awesome flowers I got!

Lucky meeee!

Which now look like this:

Great things to come… I am actually seeing at least one of these awesome people again very soon – I got an e-mail from my first singing student a couple of days ago!:-D It is so exiting, and I’m thrilled that the Culture School is lending me a room to teach in for the summer. I went there today and got a full tour from Øyvind, and the place is incredible. Everything is brand new, and it looks GREAT! The café is so cute, and it looks like it will be the venue for my christmas/EP Release concert in December/January. Will you come…? 

The youth café

Thrilled & blessed, and completely overwhelmed… I am overwhelmed with all the support my home town has given me the last couple of years, both economically and otherwise. Completely overwhelmed. This is just amazing.=)

They’re giving me the huge dance hall, which is a bit funny considering I will (most likely) only be teaching one student at the time, look how big it is!

Huuuuuge!!!

Step into my office… I spent some time getting to know the piano in there today, and who knew – all I needed was a change of scenery, and the inspiration came flowing. Finally put a melody to a little bunch of lyrics I wrote a couple of weeks back. Yay! It was nice to have an office again – and by office, I of course mean this:

Piano+pad+pencil=Audrey's office

I am looking forward to spending a lot of time in my office this summer, and hopefully you will hear the result very soon. =)

Gotta go now, I need to get some sleep before getting up early for a High School Reunion planning meeting tomorrow morning. Should be fun!

Remember to “be-fan” me on Facebook, subscribe to my blog (top right corner of this page) and follow me on Twitter, and I will make sure to keep you up to date on what’s going on with me and my music. And keep commenting, I love hearing from you! =)

Take care & keep Shining! I love you!

xxx,

Audrey

Charlotte Olivia – Just A Dream

Today’s post is dedicated to this charming young lady:

One of the best... Her name is Charlie, or Charlotte Olivia, and she is definitely one of my favorite people that I met during my first year in Liverpool, both as a person and as an artist. She has an incredible voice that you can recognize anywhere, and her songwriting is equally amazing. After a long while of silence she finally released a new song yesterday, and I recommend you all to go here and have a listen! You can download it for free from that same link, if you put your name down for the Charlotte Olivia mailing list. Also, you can visit (and subscribe to) her blog here. She’s awesome!

"Just A Dream" art work, by Giles Hinchcliff and Sara Graham

Let’s act like this isn’t real… The song is called Just A Dream, and it is truly mesmerizing. To be completely honest, I didn’t quite get a hold of it the first time through, but it is growing on me with every listen now and I absolutely love it! I love the wailing guitar, her characteristic ‘vocal wanking’ and the tasty harmonies. I love how she manages to get the mysterious dreaminess across both in the lyrics and the music, and how they both reflect each other perfectly. It kind of reminds me of a female Jeff Buckley, and that can’t be bad. I don’t even know how many times I’ve listened to this song now, and I don’t care. I can listen to it all night. I can only hope my dreams tonight will be as beautiful as this (Just A) dream of a song!

Now listening to it through my awesome Beats By Dre headphones to get the whole experience, because good headphones make all music sound better – even when it’s as good as this to begin with.

Seriously, if you are at all serious about listening to music you should invest in a decent pair of headphones. I tried to listen to something through my iPhone headphones the other day, but it was so crap now that I’m used to these ones. The only thing I would say is that they are pretty bass heavy, and a bit uncomfortable if I use them for more than an hour straight. But all in all they have definitely enhanced my music listening experience by like a million prosent, so thank you Milena for one of the best christmas pressies ever! You’re CRAZY!

Aaalways… A bit of a sidetrack there, but whatever. If I could offer you only one tip for the future, headphones would be it. So go get them. Going to sleep now, and hopefully I’ll continue the part of my dream from last night where I could fly. Seriously, it was such a let-down to wake up. Grr…And then, tomorrow night, I’m proudly seeing my guilty pleasure band Bon Jovi in Oslo with my two big sisters, and I can’t wait! Sigh… Bon Joviiii… ❤

Take care, enjoy Charlie and please keep checking in, commenting and subscribing to my blog. I love hearing from you! 

Good night from meeee! 

Lots of luuuuv’,

Audrey

Oh, and PS: Sorry for the pic Charlie. You know I love your funnyface! ;-P

Annoyingly f*ing amazing…

Heroes… You know those people who are just annoyingly talented? Those people who both inspire you, because they remind you of how amazing music can be and why you love it so much, and sometimes discourage you, because they make you realize how far you have yet to go before you will even get close to their level?

Going on and on, the way it must… Yesterday’s post made me go on a Unni Wilhelmsen Youtube mission, and to my delight, a lot of performances have found their way to Youtube since I last checked. Jeeezes, she is amazing… Like, so much it hurts to listen to. People are probably getting sick of me going on and on about Unni Wilhelmsen, but seriously, check out these videos and you will know why she is my hero(in). If not, then you’re just immune to, well, emotions. Seriously, WATCH THEM, watch them ALL!!!

First out: Space Opera. So cool. Is it just me, or does the drummer look a lot like Jay Mohr…?

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One of the songs I couldn’t write: Secret.

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This next song, Orange, is a song I have performed a couple of times myself. Maybe a bit weird of me to pick that one, considering how specific it is, but for me it was the feeling of it as well as the fun and playful melody that drew me in.

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The one and only Won’t Go Near You Again. This has been the soundtrack to pretty much all my breakups. I never did learn though. Until that last one. 

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Unni does covers as well: Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell is definitely Hers…

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Unni in Norwegian (in Dublin!) and with the coolest guitar (and guitar playing) ever:

NOT FAIR!!!! 

Crossing fingers and toes… I also just found out that she’s doing another Rockefeller gig in July, miraculously enough while I’m still in Norway, and if I don’t get to go I will seriously cry myself to sleep for the rest of the year. Milena…?? ;-P

Cover songs & the Soundtrack to our lives

The songs I cannot write… Of course, writing and performing my own songs is what I’m in this game for, what it’s all about. But now and then, I stumble upon a song by another artist that hits me so hard it sort of becomes my own, and that’s when I decide to put a cover song on the set list. Some artists just have a way of writing the songs that I can’t, and sometimes it feels like they were written for me. “Won’t Go Near You Again” by Unni Wilhelmsen is just one of those songs, and that is not the only song Unni, or other artists, have written “for me.”

The Soundtrack to your life… I think this is one of the things that makes music so huge, and so important to so many people. You get a soundtrack to your life, your journeys, your relationships, songs that you can relate to, that describe your very own feelings. They become “Your songs.” And then of course there are the songs that are “yours” because of all the memories attached to them, like this one is to me; “Ageing Superhero” by Newton Faulkner.

You can find the original Ageing Superhero here. Now if Dan and I have “a song,” it would be this one, and it definitely has a special place in my heart. 

What about you? Do you have a song that is “yours?” 

Back online!!!

Warning: This post is a result of boredom, and will not give you anything. It is completely pointless. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya’! ;P

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Hurray!! Super-Uncle came and fixed the internet in our house today!!

No cape or tights, but Super Duper none the less. So now I can go back to being a slave to my laptop. I’m still glad I went to my sister’s yesterday though, cause we got to hang out, and I got a lot of stuff done. But I’m not gonna say what, cause some of it is Top Secret.

Right now I’ve got my boyfriend on Skype in the background, but muted, cause he’s listening to music. But he keeps disappearing, and I keep seeing the chair move with no one in it. Hmm…

It’s hard work sitting in front of your computer for hours. You get hungry. So I had to make myself a little something.

Look, it’s a “lompe” – which you will have no clue what is, so I’ll have to explain it, won’t I… Fine… It’s like a fajita, but smaller, and softer, and made from potatoes. We use lompe for hot dogs (PØLSE!!), in stead of buns, but I sometimes (like riiight now) eat lompe with butter and sugar. Delicious!
Do not mistake “lompe” for the word “rompe” though, which means bum. My boyfriend became very popular with my then 5 year-old nephew because he said “pølse I rompe” at the family bbq last summer. Oskar still talks about that…

Kids think a lompe is made by driving over a potato with a steamroller. That’s because grown-ups don’t know how they’re made and don’t want to loose face when they’re asked. Cause grown-ups are supposed to know everything. And stuff. A famous blogger in Norway (yeah, a famous blogger… But she’s actually funny, and not retarded, so I get why she’s famous) eats nothing but lompe, and I doubt she even puts butter and sugar on it. Sounds a bit boring (and worrying) to me. Too much awesome food in the world!!

Oh my, now there’s another guy in his chair!

Sigh. The piano is staring at me. Just look at it.

I should probably give it some love. Enough about lompe and Super-men – Music calls. Maybe I should write a song about haunted chairs.

This must be the most pointless post ever blogged. Except from this one maybe. But I entertained myself for a little while, so screw it.

By the way, here’s a picture of me that my 3 year-old nephew took yesterday:

See ya! 😛

When lightning strikes

…creativity flows.

Wow… I didn’t realize how much I depended on the internet before I lost it. Lightning struck at my parents’ house Monday night (iiiik…!!) and took out the internet, the water (!) and my poor dvd player… Needless to say, Tuesday was an extremely boring day… I had already gone the whole weekend without the internet, and had a ton of things lined up on my to-do-list – pretty much all requiring the internet – and I felt completely lost. All I could do was think about all that I couldn’t do: E-mails to send, people to talk to, parties to arrange, and a student loan waiting for confirmation. Crap. So today I’m camping out at my sister’s house, flirting with my nephew and mooching off their internet, trying to make that list a bit shorter!

Summer tiiime… One of the things on the list, of course, is rambling on to you guys. By far one of the more pleasant things to do, and I feel the mood rising already! Of course, it also helps that the sun came back today, and I’m actually blogging outside in a bikini right now, with an awesome coffee mocha by my side. I don’t know how hot it is, but in the shade it’s TWENTYSEVEN degrees Celsius (which is 80,6 F)!!! Holy cow…

Sunny side of Oslo… The “master-class” at the school in Bjoneroa on Friday went great, and I had a lot of fun doing some choir stuff and talking to the kids. Great kids! Hopefully I will see some of them again for a singing lesson or two this summer. After that I had to rush straight to Oslo to meet Dolly, who flew in from Liverpool that morning and was waiting patiently at the bus terminal. I had a great weekend in Oslo with my guuurl, and enjoyed showing her Oslo from it’s best side – the sunny one! 😉 We stayed at the Winther’s (always a pleasure), and had some nice boat rides (and walks!) between the lovely Bygdøy and town. The walk took us over an hour each of the 3 times we did it! Boy, did we feel sporty!

My gurls... Most of my peeps came out to hang some time during the weekend as well, and we had some lovely summer days and nights with good friends! Melissa had a very acceptable excuse for not making it though – poor thing was admitted to the hospital this weekend! (nothing serious, but still, poor baby!)

At Peppe's Pizza

Dolly-time… It was great having Dolly over, and I hope (and think) she enjoyed her stay as well. She even had the balls to try the Ultimate Norwegian Experience – brown cheese!

Thanks for the visit, Sweety! =)

Back on songwriting duty… Now, I have to get on with the rest of my to-do’s, and then I’m picking up Dida’s piano so I can get on with some more songwriting. I can feel a whole bunch of songs fighting to get out at the moment, and I hope I can catch them before I loose them. Last night I picked up a song I started writing a while back, and it’s not an easy one… Some songs are just harder to write than others, but like my sister pointed out, those are the songs that need to be written. Even though writing them involves being reminded of things you’d rather forget, and facing ghosts you thought you had crossed over long ago. It will take a while, but I’m hoping it will be worth it when the song is finished. For now, I will leave you with a promise of something new in either audio- or video form very soon. Ish. 😉

Keep checking in and leaving comments guys, I love hearing from you! Take care, I hope you are having a great week!

I love you!

xxx, **Audrey**

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