We Made It!

Wow, what a trip that was.

My eternal gratitude to those who contributed to my campaign to raise funds for my debut album ‘The Departure’.

We exceeded my goal of $4,000 – tallying a total of $4,449! This experience has undoubtedly humbled me. Trust me, asking for money is not in my DNA. I couldn’t believe the amount of support I was receiving – some  from people I’d only met once before two years ago, for example.

Special thanks go to my friend from Beijing, Peter Luk, who wanted to be a producer of the album and contributed a whooping $1000 towards the cause. I was trying to hold back the tears when I read his email explaining how he wanted to help out with my record. Again, my ass was humbled (in a great way!).

I’m going to make ya’ll proud, just watch me.

Three-and-a-half weeks ago, Nir and I headed into the elusive Bunker Studios in Williamsburg to lay down drum tracks with the one and only Dan Rieser. Our engineer Jacob Bergson was a dream to work with, and the overall vibe of the studio was a unique experience that I will cherish indefinitely. I will be back. To see photos of the session, please check out the ‘Photos’ section of my website where you can be privy to the progress.

While the drum cuts are currently being edited, I had a photo shoot two weeks ago with Jim Herrington, photographer for the famous and not-so-famous (ie. ME). I met Jim about a year ago in a restaurant and instantly fell in love with his work when I checked out his website. As an enthusiast of photography (ESPECIALLY black and white), I had secretly fantasized about the day I would get to work with him. “What would my photos look like if he took them?”, I asked myself. I finally gathered up the courage to ask about his rates and availabilites and voilà, next thing you know, we’re shooting. We just had to find the most important component – the set. I made a couple of calls and finally got an “OK” to shoot at Lola Brooklyn, one of the most charming restaurants in the Fort Greene area. It was all coming together and the question was, “am I ready for this?”. I wasn’t expecting to be shooting so quickly.

I spoke to a seasoned drag-queen friend of mine, named Yancey, who is also an accomplished fashion designer and seamstress. He has been in the business for 30 years and was so excited when he heard about my project; subsequently, he offered a couple of his gorgeous made-to-wear pieces for me.

The story gets better: not only did I get hooked up with a set for the photo shoot, but my friend Saleem came to the set, all prepared with his makeup gear, ready to dab, poke and prod me with makeup. He fixed my dress and my hair on set, plus he was at my beck and call whenever I needed something. I offered Jim and Saleem lunch during the break and when I went to settle the bill at the end of the photo session, the restaurant covered our tab! WHAT?!

Free high-end clothes, free set, free stylist and free lunch (literally)? UN. HEARD. OF.

“I don’t know what I ever did to deserve this”, I thought as I wept inside from gratitude.

Here’s a sneak preview of some of the shots we did:

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Stay tuned for more updates!