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Monday, January 27, 2014

Music and its gifts!!

Dear friends reading this Blog,

I'm so grateful that every day I get to live my life, get to work on my dreams, get to spend time with people I love, and even if here and there life is tough, I always keep a smile on my face.
I'm definitely a lucky one. This doesn't mean that I didn't had to struggle at some point, that I don't get NO DAYS here and there: not everyday is a great one and just like everybody else to achieve something I have to work hard and sacrifice a few things.
But just the fact that I'm able to do it, is a reason to smile. I'm alive and I'm working hard for my dreams. That's great!!

Music as you know is my greatest joy. It makes me feel great. When I'm on stage I'm on seventh heaven. And I always feel so privileged and grateful to be able to bring all the emotions that music gives me to other people, and make them happy and emotional with me.

Last October, after my performance on the Red Carpet of the Columbus Day Parade for ABC Television, while having lunch in the beautiful building of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, I was talking to old and new friends. Always a great day of celebration.
I was somehow engaged in a conversation with an elegant gentleman, I will guess in his mid 60's. He was talking about an event he was involved with named "Change Begins Within".  The comedian Jerry Seinfeld was Master of Ceremonies and they were honoring actor Hugh Jackman and FDNY Commissioner Sal Cassano, who I had the honor to meet several times.
This gentleman was so enthusiastic to talk about the event and most of all about what they were promoting: wellness!  There were many people around and a lot of noise. So we exchanged business cards and that was it.

Ed Schloeman speaking from his heart always with so much kindness
A few days later I saw his business card on my desk, and still thinking about the kindness and enthusiasm of that person I googled his name. I soon found out that Ed Schloeman, was a retired Chief Master Sergeant (E-9) from the New York Air National Guard and a Vietnam Marine Disabled Veteran (Sgt).  He was also the co-chair of an organization called Operation Warrior Wellness and they were associated with the David Lynch Foundation, which I had in the past heard about it, vaguely. A few days later I was doing a Concert in Queens, on November 10, on Veterans Day. So I called Ed and I invited him to come as my guest to the Concert.
He was so happy to be invited and he wrote me a few emails in the next days telling me how much he was looking forward to come to the Concert with his wife Judy.
Since it was Veterans Day,  the day of the Concert we paid tribute at the end of the Concert to all of them present in the room, singing together with the audience standing "God Bless America".
It was very special as you can imagine. Ed was standing tall smiling with pride and yet humbly. A real soldier I thought!!

After the concert I was caught up signing CDs and autographs and I did not had the chance to talk to Ed. But, as kind as Ed is, he emailed me right away to tell me how much he loved the Concert and the day after he called me. It was the beginning of a wonderful friendship.

David Lynch, Donna Karan, Jerry Yellin, Bob Roth and Ed Schloeman
I had read in the mean time so much about the Operation Wellness Warriors and the David Lynch Foundation. How much this Transcendental Meditation technique could help reduce stress for the veterans and the first responders, abused women and children. Actually all of us, as all of us nowadays go true so much. It was am easy technique that was able to promote well being of the mind to everybody.

A few days after the Concert Ed invited me for lunch. To a wonderful Sushi place in Brooklyn. Ed was telling me how his life had changed after leaning TM. He shared with me so many details of his war memories. The stress and the despair he was going through before learning and discovering TM. He was telling me about his nightmares before, and how now, with 20 minutes TM a day, he was back in control of his life. I think nobody can really know what being in a war means, we can only try to imagine. But I was aware of the stress that the first responders go through and the PTS, Post Traumatic Stress,  being the daughter of a police officer.

I started to google who was doing TM. It was very interesting to discover that almost all my idols are meditating. Almost all the famous and successful people in the world we all love and admire are doing MT, to be more concentrated and less stressed.

Waves on the crest of the sea
Ed had told me something to describe what meditation can do, something that stayed with me and made me curious to learn it: he said that it is like we live everyday on the crest of the sea. All the stress of day to day , things to do and place to go, things we worry about, are like waves. We are all always busy with millions of things. We are all worry about thousands things. Stressed by thousand things.
But if we can get deep in the sea, deep inside ourselves, down there it is much waves there.....
Quiet deep down the sea
This got me to think about my own brain at night....I think that even when I'm sleeping I'm thinking about all the things I still need to do...sometimes I wake up still thinking about it.  Like it was in my dreams....maybe it sounds familiar to you too....

Ed gave me the greatest compliments I could ever receive. He said that during my Concerts ( he had at the time already saw two of my Concerts including my Christmas one in Staten Island) , he was so happy. He completely forgot where he was. He said "it was" like meditating. That was a great compliment: I was able to take him into the planet of love and peace.....I had accomplished my mission. I had touched his heart! And he had for sure touched mine!!

And it was decided. I wanted to be of help and be involved with this!!

So I will soon start to learn TM and with Ed, Operation Warriors Wellness and the David Lynch Foundations we will start to do benefit Concerts to collect funds to promote TM for the Veterans and the first responders of the FDNY and the NYPD.
My role will be to entertain and make all my audience dreaming of peace, love and romance and bring awareness about wellness, not only of the body but also of the mind and the soul.
Ed thinks I can be a great ambassador of it!!

We have a busy schedule of plans and things we want to accomplish with Ed and Operation Wellness Warriors. First event will be May 1st at the Hilton in Staten Island.
With FDNY Commissioner Salvatore Cassano
We will have FDNY Commissioner Sal Cassano as our speaker  and we will honor some great Italian Americans. And after the dinner and all I will entertain everybody with my Concert!!! The first of many all around the USA!!!

I'm so honored and happy to be able to help others with my music!! This is a blessing!! I'm so grateful to God for it!!

I'm looking forward to share with you all about this new journey that music has brought into my life!!

I'm lucky and I'm grateful!!

And stay tuned for my next week BLOG.....first  Concert of the year : January 29th at the Piano Room of the Etcetera Etcetera! A special night!! Special guests in the audience!!

Love and baci,

For more about Operation Wellness Warriors
For more about the David Lynch Foundation

Don't forget to download the February month of the calendar :

PSW : valentineg14


PWS :  gvalentine14

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