You may have heard me vaguely mention my next album idea Portraits here and there. I am officially announcing it’s existence, and that I am going to be working on this project for the next year, with a tentative release sometime towards the end of 2010.
To give a little glimpse inside the idea behind this project…
I come from a family of passionate artists. Not just in music, but also in art. My dad, Ron Southworth, is a talented photographer. Over the past several years, he and my mom have taken countless trips to various parts of the Northwest to take photos of the beautiful landscape. It started out as just a hobby, and has turned into a side career for him as his photographs have developed a small fanbase (a.k.a. pieces of fine art that sell between $250 – $500 per print). He is also a member of the Camano Island Art Guild, which is neat because the island has been a flocking spot for artists for years and you have to be invited to be a member, after in depth screening of your work.
The thing that makes his photography unique is that what you see is what he truly saw through his lense. In a world of digital art, Photoshop, and other ways to manipulate photos these days, my dad’s art stands unique in that he rarely, if ever, uses such manipulation in his photos. The skies are that beautiful pink color because he knows how to use his camera equipment to capture it. The colors are that vibrant for the same reason.
So back to Portraits, having seen the beautiful pieces of art that my Dad had been creating over the past few years sparked an idea in my head about a year ago. I had been toying around with the idea of doing an album that was story-based. Meaning, I wanted to find an original story and score it with music. However, as I continued to research stories and ideas, I kept coming back to these photos of my dad’s. They were a story in themselves; an artistic journey around the Northwest landscape.
I got out my little notebook (my brainstorming book), and jotted down several locations and iconic images of Washington (and some of Oregon). For example, lighthouses, beaches, mountains, waterfalls, cities, etc. I started to take one idea at a time and think of what would it sound like if it were music? In a sense, I suppose you could say that I started to score a soundtrack for each of the images/locations.
And this is where the idea began for Portraits.
This album project is not only exciting for me because of the originality of it, but also because this is my home. I grew up here in the Northwest, so to score a soundtrack for the landscape is very personal to me. I have so many memories of climbing stairs up to the top of a lighthouse, playing on the beaches and catching little crabs, hiking the majestic mountains, seeing beautiful sunsets over the ocean…
My dad is on board with the project and will be continuing to capture images to be used for the music. This will be a more expensive project than I have ever done before though. For one, the time and travel involved. Two, because visual stimulation is key here (equal to the audio stimulation), I want to create a very moving and complimentary CD booklet with full color pages of each of the photography works. We are also thinking of doing an companion book of my dad’s photography, possibly a coffee table book.
Thirdly, because the music for this project is going to be of a cinematic quality. Oh the ideas that I have for this. 🙂 I am going to be on the lookout for talent to collaborate with me on beat work; someone who is a wiz at producing beats of the down-tempo quality (think Enigma, Delerium, Paul Schwartz, etc.).
So there you have it. The ideas and story behind my upcoming album Portraits.
I am still in full marketing/promoting mode for The Lullaby Album right now, but since the production stage of that album is finished I can at least begin composing/producing the music for Portraits while simultaneously promoting the lullabies. I do have my husband and little one though, who are my first priority. So the music for Portraits will be written with no deadlines or pressure. This project is a pleasure for me and I feel that I really want to give it my utmost quality and talent.
In other words, it will be done when it is done – without compromising family time or quality of music.
How can YOU help? By simply helping me spread the word about my music. Help me get the word out. I have video promos on youtube that you can post on your blogs. Give my cds Key of Sea and The Lullaby Album as gifts for Christmas this year. Come babysit Preston for me so I can work on my music.
LOL okay I was really just kidding about that last part. 🙂
Please visit www.RonSouthworth.com to see more of this beautiful photography.