Ok guys. . .It's the long version! But I think you'll get to know me a lot better this way. :)
For as long as I can remember, singing and music have been my life. As a kid, I grew up in an environment of constant teasing and ridicule all through grade school, to the point of serious bullying and violence. I’ve always been a very loving and emotional person, always wanting the best for everyone, even if that’s not what others wanted for me. At a time in my life when I felt so alone, music was always there for me, at my highest and most definitely at my lowest. Probably sounds like the typical story, right? But really, music was my way, my outlet, to express all my love, sadness, joy, despair, and every emotion in between that I had welling up inside of me when I had no one to express it to or share it with. It was the connection I so desperately desired to have with others that I found in music, in the voice that God gave me. It made me feel alive.
When I was old enough, I sang in the church choir and then later in the top choir in my high school and in college. My nerves allowed me only one solo in high school. . .and MAN was I nervous!! My knees would shake and my mouth and throat would go dry. I had THE WORST stage fright. Even at home, if I got caught singing, I was just mortified. . . even if it sounded good! It was awful. Then, when I was 21, it just went away. I can’t explain it. . .it was just gone. Suddenly I could sing ANYTHING, anywhere! This was when I really realized my dream of being a singer could come to fruition, and I have been actively pursuing it ever since. . .that is, in between nursing school and working as an Intensive Care Nurse for the past 6 plus years.
I studied Nursing at San Francisco State University beginning in 2003 and graduated Cum Laude in 2006. It was during this period that I really dove into pursuing my music career. I will never forget the first time I heard myself played back in a studio, outside my own head and outside my own judgement. It was in 2004. . .maybe 6 months after my first real heartbreak. I was at a friend’s studio in Alameda, CA. We were really just messing around and decided to record it. ‘At Last’ by Etta James was the song of choice, one of my most favorite. I closed my eyes and sang from the deepest part of my heart while Anthony, the producer and a musician himself, looked up the chords and just followed me. What came out of it was incredible, not so much because of the way it sounded necessarily, but because, for the first time, I heard my heart from the outside. My passion had come to life.
Some time passed after that before an opportunity arose in the form of a post card I almost dismissed to audition to participate in a competition/showcase audition in Los Angeles called the International Presentation of Performers (iPOP). There are probably approximately 1,000 + performers that attend this competition each year from around the world. It was the last day to sign up, and I decided to take a chance. Long story short, I was honored as Singer of the Year overall and First Runner Up for Star of the Year overall (a combination of singing, acting and modeling). I also gained recognition from a number of A&R Reps, producers, talent scouts, etc., which led me to further auditions in New York and the eventual recording of my first demo with a prominent musician and producer, recording 4 songs in 7 days, none of which I knew beforehand and two of which we wrote in the same 7 day time span.
Throughout this time, I continued my work as an full-time Intensive Care Nurse, having the privilege of caring for those at their most vulnerable while sharing my music any way I knew how. But going between the two careers that are such opposites can be very difficult and very humbling, and chasing after your dream is a long and winding road, that is for sure. Balancing the two can be tough. Many promises from those vowing to help me along the way in artist development toward my ultimate goal, that I had placed my trust in to lead my down the right path, did not quite turn out the way I had hoped. I trudged on, searching for more opportunities. Websites, photo shoots, traveling, networking; one connection led to another, and I continued to push on with song writing and making music until I couldn’t push anymore.
About a year ago, I decided to take a break from my pursuit. It was one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make. I felt like I was letting everyone down, especially my incredible mother, who’s been with me through everything. It felt like a bad break up, even though I knew it wouldn’t be for too long. I was starting to feel like I was pushing on for everyone but myself, and I was losing the intense passion I started with so long ago as a child. Music and singing was becoming the chore I never wanted it to be and I was losing my joy. I was having to choose between my music and the rest of my dreams for my life as far as having a significant other, having a family someday, etc. My desire is not to sacrifice one for the other; I want it all. About 6 months prior to this, I had also just ended a relationship with someone I trusted who was dishonest with me in a big way, and that affected me on a whole different level. Having someone cross you does something to you, and makes you question your trust in yourself and your own judgement to a degree. My nerves crept back in. But, by the same token, meeting someone who renews you does so much more, and I have surely been blessed as of late. My passion is still bubbling under the surface in a big way, fueled by life experiences and the people participating in them with me- the good, the bad, the romantic, the sad, the joyful. From a passionate kiss, to holding the hands of the sick and dying, the scared and fragile, and making them feel human again, to my mom’s honest smile or a warm summer night, a man coming to me to express how touched he was by a song I sang that reminded him of his late wife while wiping a tear from his eye, or the silence that comes when people stop to listen- it’s cumulative. My flame is being re-ignited a little more every day, my confidence growing again. My ultimate goal is not to waste this gift I’ve been given, to share music with people in a way that affects them, to reclaim my joy and bring joy to those around me. I want others to feel music the way I do. I just cannot imagine life without it.
You can hear more music @ http://www.myspace.com/kaceychadwickmusic