Thursday, July 13, 2017

Haitian Culture Falls Fresh On Me Like Waters From the Saut

“When you have unity. Nothing is heavy” – dad

It is weird how things come into play. Somebody says, hey try this and you do or you don’t. That’s the way it goes. You might have your own way of doing things and choose your own path. But there are times you think, hey why not and the results are amazing.

So I tried something completely different. I was Ushered into a transformative moment by my folks to write a song about Saut D’Eau (Sodo), which is located about 60 miles north of Port au Prince. Saut D’Eau is also the French word for waterfall, with this area in the Mirabalais province of Haiti being known for the most beautiful and peaceful waterfall you could find in the world.

Every year in July, there is a wonderful feast celebrated on the 16th of July known as the feast of Mount Carmel where hundreds gather to celebrate this wonderful day together. This is part of my culture. I am Haitian and was raised with knowledge of my background, traditions and the peoples from whom we came. I have been to the feast once while I was in high school and it was such a beautiful celebration. So many people. Such a great gathering of like-minded beautiful people that left me with such an amazing feeling.

I was asked to write a song about this very place. Usually, I am not one who needs direction. I write songs based on what is in my heart and that is it. But when my family asked me to do it, I did. Who knew that going with someone else’s inspiration would let the words and music shed out of me like water weight while on the treadmill at the gym.  A few hours later, the song, Saut D’Eau Song was born. I guess you can say the weight of the mission I was tasked with was not heavy because it was with my folks in mind.

I hope that you’ll check it out. It is mostly in English as my Haitian Kreyol is not the best, though I did add a few words of Kreyol here and there because I am Haitian and this song is about Haiti. Saut D’Eau Song was written and produced by Stephanie Jeannot. All lyrics, music and vocals are by Stephanie Jeannot.

Anyway, here is the link to the song: 

Thank you so much for checking out my blogpost. 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Help Me Win This Year's International Sarah Vaughan Jazz Vocal Competition.

Help me to spread the word and to win this year's International Sarah Vaughan Jazz Vocal Competition.

I had the unique audacity of entering into this competition with the hopes that maybe I would maybe advance to the next round and possibly win this thing. So here is me putting feet to my faith.

Would you be so kind as to ponder the concept of clicking on any one of the three of my submissions, listening to my cover and clicking vote on it? I realize that every selection might not appeal to every ear and so, I added all three and am asking that you choose at least one and help me to level the playing field.

I am thinking through my fingers as I write this post with humble honesty. I have cruised through practically the entirety of my span of time here on this earth with a voice and a heart to use it. I have even tackled the world of music and slipped into the scene as myself, doing what I love to do the most with everything that I have in me to give. And realizing that I have the explosive potential to rise against the wind, I am hoping that you will float through these melodies with me in mind, and help me to hammer home the idea.

I must say, just by reading this post, you are playing an active role in my life and I thank you
for that. I am won over when I see some of the most inspiring comments to ever touch my eyes on every social platform I share. I enter into a world of optimism just by reading about your lives and the things that you do and all for a great reason; to motivate each other to keep on keeping on.

Thank you for it all and thank you for considering my contest submissions in this year’s 8th Annual Sarah Vaughan Jazz Vocal Competition as one worthy of a win.
And here they are:

Thank you for reading my blogpost and for voting. Have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

I Was Inspired to Write A Summer Song

Now that the summer is here, many people will be gathering together with family for their annual get together.

I love them because of all the joy that springs up celebrating life and the good old times with relatives that might have been missing in action for the whole year. Actually it was one of those family get-togethers that inspired me to write the song "Family Reunion."

This particular family has an annual family reunion every year and this year made it their ninth annual. It is good when a family can gather together like that for other than sad times; in my humble opinion.

The family reunion I was honored to be at, was well planned out and organized with a schedule of events for the entire family to do together as the team that they are.I never felt more inspired by anything in my whole life.

Lyrics started to storm into my life while I was there and this hurricane took over my body. As soon as I reached home, I created musical tracks and added my lyrics to the music. Let's just say that there was no sleeping that night, and a few hours later, the powerful storm that was once wrecking havoc over my brain, died down and I had a song.

If you have not heard it, hope you will embrace it.

Here is a new original, summer song  entitled "Family Reunion." All lyrics, music and vocals by Stephanie Jeannot Video produced by Stephanie Jeannot.

If you listened/watched, tell me what you think. Alright Beautiful People. 
Have a wonderful day!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Wonder Woman: Find Your Own Inner Amazonian

“‘Wonder Woman is psychological propaganda
for the new type of woman who should, I believe, rule the world,’
declared the psychologist and comic book writer William Moulton Marston”

I have been on a roll lately getting out to the movies to actually see films that were recently released; and finally, I got a chance to sit down, enjoy a small tub of over-buttered popcorn and watch Wonder Woman.

It was a combination of seeing the cartoons as a young child and the very cool trailers that of this feature picture which stimulated my interest to see it.

What I remember about this superhero story was that Wonder Woman was one of the coolest of DC Comics. You did not want to mess with this don't eff with me attitude person. She walked around with sword, shield and her lasso of truth and made me and probably like every little girl want to be a superhero. I guess the latter still remains a bit true, though now watching the movie as an adult might make you want to go out and “find your own inner Amazonian” (Foreman). 

Check out the coolest collection of Wonder Woman Comic Books: the 75th Anniversary box set of it here:

What I didn’t remember about this story was that the heroine was from the race of warrior women known as the Amazons. The Amazons lived in the name of peace and justice. They spent their days readying themselves for the return of Aries, the god of war in a secret world they considered to be paradise known as Themyscira.

Though the story of the Amazonian women is often seen as a mere product of Greek
storytelling, some claim that the Amazons were an actual tribe of women from West Africa. Other historians claim that remains of these historical, ancient warrior  women were discovered near or around the Black Sea and by the Mediterranean Sea, where this race of strong and brave individuals who were skilled in warfare were said to have lived in tribes.  

You can actually get lost in the beauty of the Black Sea. I seen it for myself with my own eyes.  
In Sochi in front of the Black Sea with Lev Shafir

It is tropical. It is beautiful. And it is a calm setting. In the movie, Themyscira was like the most luxurious place you could ever go where you found the most magical of waters in their secret little landscape of the world. When I actually see West Africa for myself, which I hope to someday, I will be able to say which of the two was more like a paradise. 

The story in the comics says that the fiercest among the dwellers of this “paradisiacal” place was the young Princess Diana; Wonder Woman. Her mission in life was to stop the wars and the killing of innocent men, women and children in the barbarian world.

And the story continues with Gal Gadot doing an extraordinary job playing the role of Princess Diana, Chris Pine working his magic in his portrayal of Captain Steve Trevor and a great cast of actors that really played out their parts quite well.

Princess Diana felt that it was her sacred duty to save the world and so the picture brings on a wealth of video game-like action-packed fighting scenes that reminded me of the days when I spent time in front of the tv, clicking the controller of my Sega Genesis playing the game Street Fighter. For me, that made the movie exciting. There are also some comedic scenes which I thought were great to lighten up the intensity of this great movie.

Some Things to Think About from the film

1. Captain Steve Trevor said “everyone is fighting their own battles while you are fighting yours. How true is that? We all have our own battles and you never know what someone else might be going through. So, it is important to not judge someone else based on your own status.

2. War was referred to as a god. I thought about all the hate that goes on and I can honestly see that there are people who actually worship the idea of fighting and destroying as opposed to preserving and keeping a peaceful front.

3. Daily practice in your purpose helps you to navigate the terrain with power and literally transform it. Wonder Woman transformed the world just by being skilled in her practice and was able to stand strong in each and every battle because of it.  

I loved this movie and recommend it to all who are interested in seeing a great film.

Works Cited

Foreman, Amanda. The Amazon Women: Is There Any Truth Behind the
Myth?. April 2014. Smithsonian Magazine Online. 6.7.17.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Excellent book worth reading: TD Jake's "When Power Meets Potential"

"When Power Meets Potential: Unlocking God's Purpose in Life" by TD Jakes makes me feel that Lord Byron was right when he said that “a drop of ink may make a million think” (Lord Byron).

You should definitely get your hands on this book. Oh my goodness. 
Such an empowering read.

I did not know that TD Jakes was a NY Times best selling author. Actually, I probably would have never read one of his books until I heard a podcast with him being interviewed by Success Magazine; one of my favorite magazines to indulge in. I both read the periodical 
publication and subscribe/listen to their wonderful podcast. Check it out for yourself. Success Magazine is one of my favorite magazines to read


I can honestly say that it was God orchestrated thing for me to pick up the book "When Power Meets Potential: Unlocking God's Purpose in Life."  Excellent!

My favorite of TD Jake's quotes in the book reads, “It is everyday moments that prepare everyday people for extraordinary exploits” (TD Jakes).

This statements makes me feel that my plowing the field is preparing me for my breakthrough. The extra sweat in these everyday moments is so worth it. I have diligent hands. I drink deeply and delight in overflowing abundance. I have potential to transform the planet. I am inspired! 

Are you ready for your "Breakthrough?" 

Saturday, July 1, 2017

O Canada, Travel; Happy Birthday Canada!

I have found a genuine appreciation for traveling. I really enjoy it and it has become an irresistible art to me.

Seeing new sites has had an adventurous impact on me. I have become insatiably curious in discovering things I have not before seen or maybe I had seen before but was so long ago that the memory of it is no longer fresh in my mind.

So, when the world for me seems to start to spin out of control, it is an indication that I need to experience life in a bigger way to gain back control of my emotions.

Last July, I felt that I was in need of a wind of change and so, I snagged an opportunity to take a trip to Canada. I had been there with my family many times during my childhood. I had seen many parts and enjoyed the lifestyle, but the experience as an adult is much different. And so, I ventured there and what a wonderful experience that was. I can actually say that I love Canada.

When I went there in the past, we had always hopped in a car and drove the eight hours that it took to get to the destination which was set in the plan. This time however, I boarded a plane and to my surprise, it took an hour and ten minutes which I thought was a deep breath of reassurance. Less time traveling. More time enjoying the destination. 

Time away eased my emotional turmoil in so many ways. It sparked joy to once again come to this foreign land and put aesthetic value to trudging off alone and giving experience a chance.

So many new ideas started to brim while seeing Canada more in depth. I was far from the comfort of home but I blew off some steam enjoying cool street festivals. And I flipped the script by leaving my hotel room to visit family members that I had not seen in years. And I captured each moment by being fully present wherever I was while I was there. And I broke down barriers by linking up with a  social media friend of mine who lived there for the first time in person, who had nothing but the best intentions at heart for me, showed me some areas of Canada that I had never seen and that was awesome.

I even seen things with my own eyes that I felt was worthy of serious thought. Like for instance; why do raccoons in some places have a ready to attack state of mind but in others, can be around human beings like house pets? I found that quite interesting. 

Traveling made me see that you can either be bound by anxiety and keep your head stuck in the sand or you can counter life’s effects and engage with the world in different ways. You can stay in the routine and never change the mundanities of it or you can take a short walk on the eastern edge of another world and overlook the mountains in your life.  

I wandered off course on purpose to Montreal. It was the summertime,  so why not. It definitely changed things for me in a positive way. Gave me a great reason to rise up singing and to spread my wings with knowledge that I can actually overcome poignancy by creating my own joy and allowing it to simmer. 

Cover of Summertime performed by the JNote Quintet

I came across so many things I loved like Mount Royal, Old Montreal, Trois Riviers, House of Jazz, A Quebecois museum, a mall that spans about a mile underground and some other really cool things. 

I also discovered the fact that water, even just the smell of it brings peace to your mind. And the best part, there was a Starbucks on every corner; what a treat. 

Every tender moment I spent there was worth it.  I am still captivated by Canada’s energy and I cannot wait to visit there again. This post is in short to say, I love you Canada. Happy 150th birthday!