Saturday , 24 March 2018

Michele Stevens Bernard: Carpe Diem Y’all

Confession:  I am obsessed with watching McKinney Music Mashup videos.  They inspire me.  My hat is off to all who have the confidence to turn the camera on themselves and share their musical talent with the world.  All I have to do is hit play.  My foot starts tapping, my head starts bobbing and my face starts smiling.  Sometimes I sing along.  I’ve even seen a few that cause chill bumps and tears – in a good way, of course! 

I find myself caught up in the excitement of seeing how many new entries are coming in each day.  At this writing, there is only 1 week and 2 days left to get your video entered.  Contestants can enter as solo artists or as a group.  I am impressed by the number of young people giving it a go.  Justin Beiber and Taylor Swift need to be watching their backs.  These Mash-Up kids pack a serious punch and are giving the more seasoned adult contestants a serious run for the money (That’s 2500.00 in cash prizes with 1000.00 going to the winner who will open for American Idol, Taylor Hicks on September 17th, by the way).

I keep checking to see who is in the top 20.  Online voting started on July 1 and goes through August 29.  Note to contestants:  if you have a built in fan base – use it.  Ever heard of the force to be reckoned with known as the Soul Patrol?  In 2006, the Soul Patrol, Taylor Hicks’ online fan base made Hicks the winning-est winner in AI history.  Just ask Taylor, getting friends, family and fans to support you is a good thing. 

Last week, I had the opportunity to speak with Taylor Hicks.  I asked him if he had any advice to pass on to the Mashup contestants.  He simply stated, “Stand out.  It’s a visual and musical competition, so make a point to stand out visually, and stand out musically.”  He then went on to ask me to pass on his best wishes to all the contestants, and to tell you he is looking forward to getting together with you soon.  

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve enjoyed video-interviewing different contestants.  These videos will be featured here at TSB over the next several weeks leading up to the finals.  What a wonderful treat to sit down with some of the nicest, most goal-oriented, and talented young adults in the area.  All have represented themselves well, and I have no doubt they will do well for themselves as they begin their music careers.

On a final note, I received an email from a contestant who doesn’t see the point in promoting their participation in this event.  What a shame, because this particular contestant has as much of a chance as any to make the top twenty.  I am a put-myself-in-their-shoes kind of gal, but try as I might, I cannot think of one reason why one wouldn’t want to promote themselves or the Vote-For-Me event they have chosen to enter.  But back to the contestant’s question of why should I want to do this?  Never mind that this event is a fun community event that is bringing people together, showcasing your talent, and most importantly raising funds for a worthy cause, I can answer your question in two words:  Soul Patrol.

Carpe Diem Y’all!  Michele


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