2016 took off at a run. There are a lot of changes and developments happening, one of which is me closing this blog down as separate site and transitioning it to be part of elizaveta.com, as it should have been for a while.
You must be asking: what happened, Elly? Did you go to Japan? Did you have a birthday? Did you have a good Christmas?
Well, kind of yes to all of those and more. I have also moved. At the moment I am strictly nomadic, without a permanent address. Right now I am in Los Angeles. Prior to this it was Spain and Moscow. This Wednesday I am flying to Shanghai, where I will perform my song Odi et Amo in Chinese! After that I'll be briefly back stateside, but then going to Tokyo for all of February!
I am learning Japanese and it's been wonderful, plus I am still putting finishing touches on my Japanese language album, which will be released in May. So I'm off to Tokyo to take a language course, as well as explore it more, as I loved it the last time around. My love affair with Japan is in full bloom.
I have been writing and recording, don't worry! There is not only one, but TWO new Pegboard Nerds collaborations coming up this spring. I wrote and recorded two brand new duets. Two of my songs are about to be featured in movies out next month.
I am also joining Patreon, so if you are reading this blog, keep an eye out for that special link. The Patreon membership will allow me to provide new music and other content monthly, as I move around the globe and record in different languages.
I also performed at TED Global 2015 in December, which took place in Geneva, Switzerland. It was a wonderful experience. You can read a small write-up on it HERE.
We also shot a music video for the Japanese version of 'Hero', in collaboration with incredible floral artist Flower Couture (photo above is from my performance in Tokyo for Autodesk gallery opening, where she styled me). I can't wait to share all of that with you!
There is a lot more, but I have to go back to working and nursing my cold. I know I promised many times I'd be better about blogging and I guess I lied. I can just imagine my father reading this and shaking his head at his daughter's inconsistent behavior.
But hey! 2015 was a strange year and 2016 feels like the waves just got bigger. But I also feel like I am a much better surfer, so there. I am feeling creative and adventurous and this blog will not die, it will just resume a new life where it was always supposed to be - at my official site!
Stay tuned for the waves, my friends. And be assured that my absence here was not from hiding in a proverbial cave somewhere, it was just from being so ridiculously busy that I now know I need to organize myself 3,000 better. This spring is partially about that. I feel like I am about to take things to the next phase in more ways than one. Are you with me? I hope so:)
Sometimes new beginnings hide themselves in endings and vice versa.
I am going through something big, and I can feel it in my heart, my stomach, my toes, as well as my fingertips.
It's true that wherever you go, there you are. But sometimes you can leap and leave yourself behind for a split second.
I am not even sure what I mean here.
But I will be performing a concert in a couple of weeks. And I will sing the new me. After that I'll be going to Japan.
I know, it's so like me - to post a cliffhanger and then leave this blog empty and echoing.
But I was busy! (excuses, excuses).
And so here are some dates and goodies:
As you can see above, this is the cover for my upcoming album 'Messenger'. The single 'Trap' will go live on iTunes worldwide June 1st, and the entire album will be available for pre-order. Oh yes, and a really awesome remix of 'Trap' will be available, too. The full album will go live June 29, 2015.
Track list has been updated, and here it is:
2. Messenger (feat. Great Caesar)
4. Time of Your Life
7. These Stupid Games
8. Bella Anima
9. Space Pirate's Love Song
10. Trap (J Paul Mix)
This is very much my album, in the sense that it's multi genre and yet, I am hoping, there is a thread running through it. It sits somewhere in between Beatrix Runs and Hero in scope. I'll do some detailed entries on the songs and their stories later (yes, I will - pinky swear!)
This album, unlike Hero and more like Beatrix Runs, has a number of pure acoustic moments - but also gets its share of majestic and choral. Generally speaking, it's quite organic and has a lot of piano in it. More than half the tracks - or at least their foundations were recorded live, as in: me, playing piano and singing at the same time.
That brings me to THE TOUR: Look at the right hand column and you will find my tour dates for this summer, or some of them (since we are adding more soon). I'll be performing in New York, Moscow, London, L.A. & San Francisco over the course of two months, so make sure you come and partake, if you are in the area.
What else? I will be the voice of the Tavern Bard for Dragon Age again this year, so that's fun:)
OK, I am off to do more work.
PS: the source image for the cover is by a wonderful artist I discovered recently, whose name is Eugenia Loli. Google her and partake of her work because she is remarkable - and this cover will get a blog entry all its very own quite soon.
So, as a little heads up, I will be launching a brand new music side project soon. It's called Spy Satellites and it will be All Electro All The Time. What that means is that this will be my electronic music project. I am excited about it because it has a significantly different sound. We already have the first single in place, it's getting mixed, and we're looking to make a video for it very soon, too.
This morning I am rather grumpy because I dropped my iPhone into a cup of tea as I randomly woke up in the wee hours of the morning and was checking the time. Fingers crossed it will dry out and be as good as new - because it IS new - my old one was washed in the washing machine prior to my departure for Russia. I am never this clumsy, I have no idea what is happening.
I'll just choose to believe that something amazing is around the corner and this is a way to get any kinks out of the way. Yeah, yeah, I know. But I have to believe something other than that I have to get a new iPhone.
Well, not as romantic as a train, but from my mom's kitchen in Moscow!
I am sitting half dressed in the hotel room and about to get ready and go to perform.
I am in St. Petersburg. It is such a beautiful city, I wish I had a bit more time to go out and walk around. This city is very moody, though, even more than Moscow - right now the skies are gray, overcast and look like lead, hanging over the streets, really close to the ground. Anyway, usually I would still go out, armed with an espresso and brave the weather.
But I am fighting off a bit of a virus of some kind I picked up somewhere, so my energy has been somewhat limited. We came here via a night train. It left Moscow at midnight. It really is as romantic as it sounds, except there was no one special here to share my train compartment, so I drank my tea, listened to music in my headphones and stared out into the darkness, which pressed against the train windows.
After the show - I am opening for Bi-2 and then performing with them, as well - we catch another night train. I will try to do another Bambuser broadcast then. The train we took to come here had wi fi, so I am hoping this one will, too.
I also just posted a cover of a Russian song I love - it's called 'The Prayer" by Bi-2.
Hearts up on the roof
are breathing slowly before they leap
I can hear all your thoughts
All we care about has gone topsy-curvy
How can one say this, without breaking it, tearing it apart
We are a like a river, here for ages
like the words of a prayer
Everything, except love
our whole life - so far away
I am not alone
but I am no one without you
Ashes are light and weightless
you didn't notice the swift passage of time
the spell runs out and pearls become glass
How empty it is, on the inside
without mirages, without magic
We are here only for a moment
let it sound like the words of a prayer
Alright, so here is the window for Bambuser. I am planning on giving this a go and doing a live broadcast at 3PM PST, while I am on the night train, which is carrying me away into wide open spaces...
Here I am in my old city again.
What is happening in my life, you may ask?
Well, lots and lots. First and foremost, I am working on an acoustic EP, called Fairytales and Satellites, to be out by summer's end. It's all just piano and voice... ok voices, and some beautiful strings here and there. The titles are:
Fairy Tale for Girls
I am very excited about it because unlike HERO, this EP very will be very pure and acoustic. I get so ambitious when I record or arrange these days. Fairy Tales and Satellites is a good counterpart to Hero because it is so stripped down and breathes differently. As a matter of fact, the original takes that are being used were not even recorded to click - they are performances, and it also gives the songs/tracks a different kind of vibe, which is not as polished and very organic.
Plus, the full Hero album promises to be pretty ambitious and full sounding, just like the Hero EP, so Fairy Tales and Satellites provides a welcome harbor for those of my fans who miss Beatrix Runs. Also - Bella Anima is a hybrid pop/opera kind of song, just like Odi et Amo, so since the Hero EP didn't have any opera on it, this should soothe the pain;)
This past weekend I was a guest of B2 at Russia's largest open air rock music festival, aka NASHESTVIE. It means Invasion, more or less. I guested on one of my favorite songs of theirs - Молитва, or Prayer. Actually, I am going to post a cover of it shortly.
By the way, do you see a pattern here: I release an EP called HERO, which then gets used for an epic viral Superman video, and following that I perform at a festival called Invasion? Coincidence? I think not!;)
Performing in front of 120,000 people is quite a high, let me tell you. There was a symphony orchestra and fireworks. I wore a new headpiece, designed by my lovely i102fly:
Ignore the sweater with dots. This photo was taken in the green room/tent and I was trying to keep warm. By evening's end it was FREEZING cold. I thought I would die. But I still wore the dress. Ah, the pressures of performing life;)
Unfortunately that morning I woke up absolutely sick - apparently I had had some sort of food poisoning. Warning: do not eat little cakes in Moscow's cafes you are not familiar with - which I had.
Shura B2, one of the band's two leads, suggested I take some super Soviet remedy which had been developed in the USSR in the 70's for cosmonauts, in case they got poisoned by something in space. Ok. Well, it worked - it tasted like chalk, but by the afternoon I was alive and well and keeping food down, as opposed to lying down flat with my eyes closed.
Note to self: driving for three hours on Russian country roads while sick from food poisoning is not something that can or should be done on regular basis.
All in all, I'd love to do it again. And again. And again. I mean, the performance part, not the food poisoning part. It was unreal, it was beautiful - it was a high of all highs.
Speaking of performing in front of large crowds. Here is a video we just posted of my performance of Dreamer with symphony orchestra in Minsk, Belarus (Minsk Arena), when I was touring in support of B-2. Maybe not 120,000 people, but definitely around 12,000. I was terrified out of my mind, but had such fun. My personal favorite part of the video is when the camera pans across the keyboard player who is having a blast. What else could I ask for, really?:)
Other updates and things coming up or in the works:
- A cute and much delayed fan-sourced HERO video, where I am talking about the song. It features footage from fans and kids.
- Japanese language EP (two songs, Dreamer and Hero)
- Odi et Amo in Chinese
- Two new covers
- Full Hero album this winter
- Full Russian language album this spring
However, there are other big things in progress I am not quite at liberty to talk about just yet... so stay tuned, my darlings;)
The PegBoard Nerds version of HERO was used by their label Monstercat for a remix contest. So now, if you go to YouTube, and type in Elizaveta, what you get is literally hundreds of Hero remixes of all kinds.
A final note to my fans who read this: I know it takes me time to deliver things I promise to you, like the Hero video. However, since I am an indie artist at the moment, a lot rests on my shoulders and sometimes things just take - a lot - longer. This will change soon enough as I am putting together a new team and a framework for myself which will make everything easier. But I am not quite there yet. So I am the CEO, the builder, the artist, and the everything.
Well, except for you, who read this, listen to my music and come to my concerts. Without you, there would not be much at all, so thank you for your patience:)
What an unreal couple of days.
I am on tour in Russia, supporting a veteran Russian band, B-2. I get to do the opening set, but then also sing seven duets with them throughout their own set, PLUS sing one of my own songs with orchestra.
Yes, I forgot to mention that there's a symphony orchestra, too, in addition to the band.
I am loving every minute of it. So far we have done two cities - Kursk and Oryol. The audiences in both were so warm and welcoming, it was like a dream. Maybe it is a dream. But it's also a homecoming of sorts. After all, I am Russian. I grew up here. I may not have spent the recent years here, but the roots run deep. For my opening set, I sing songs both in English and Russian.
The political situation leaves a lot to be desired... and here's to hoping it will improve, and very soon:( But as for this moment, I am here to sing for these people - and hopefully remind them that sometimes you do get through, that life is not JUST struggle - sometimes after years of struggle you do get to live the dream.
On top of that, the PegBoard Nerds version of my single Hero is so, so good - and the Superman video it's attached to has gone viral - over 5 million views in the last two days. Here's the thing: I am already in heaven thinking about the fact that in the last 48 hours 5.5 million people have heard my voice.
That's enough for me.
But the response is mostly so positive - and today my site crashed because, apparently, the traffic to the site was too heavy for it to handle. This had never happened to me before: a definite first.
Hero is a very special song for me. I'll tell you why in the next post, though, because it's midnight here and I am absolutely knackered. Tomorrow's another show. See you then, goodnight.
London is all gray skies and piercing wind. The rain lets up occasionally and then it's plain lovely.
I went for walks and got rewarded by sun:
I also got rained on quite a lot.
After a while I decided to take matters into my own hands and bought a hat. It came in handy. I also got lots of compliments. Strange, because you'd think the English wear hats more often. But I guess not, I was the only one rocking the wide brimmed gray sexy hat. It was good for the rain.
I also went to see a Paul Klee exhibit at the Tate Modern. It was a feast for the senses.
He had a good life, that Klee. He got to be in Germany at the height of the Bauhaus movement and spent time with Kandinsky. They probably smoked cigarettes and debated art and philosophy over wine or something stronger in late night cafes and bars. Lucky him. He spent most of his life doing what he loved and in the right place. He died just before the start of the 2nd World War - probably a good thing since it would have broken his heart. His last painting was called 'Twilight Flowers' and it made me cry.
Here is a quote of his, I love the last sentence about the artist being 'a creature on a star among stars'.
I stayed with friends and was surrounded by cats. It's nice to have a warm cat around on a cold night, let me tell you.
This one, though, was as large as a panther - I swear! But very sweet and cuddly.
On occasion the sky looked magical, like in a Peter Pan story:
I went to the Borough Market and spent lots of money on edible things. Can you blame me?
My Troubadour show was sold out and packed. The sound guy was a cute Italian serious bloke and he was very good. I think I'll hire him again!
I caught a cold and brought it back to L.A. On the way back I woke up and saw glaciers: