story behind the song: DAWN

Dawn is a song about perseverance. It’s about wrestling with questions and facing the unknown, even if it means staying up all night, metaphorically or literally, while you move through whatever it is. In the past I’ve written a lot of songs with lyrics that are more “wordy” (I love words) – so for this song, I wanted to write something that was more straight-forward and declarative. I ended up singing the lyrics and melody to myself for the first time on the way to the dry-cleaners on a January evening.

*If you joined the live Q&A that I did on facebook on the eve of the EP release (here’s a link to the replay if you missed it!), then you heard this anecdote: a couple of days before the EP released, I was driving down the same road that I had taken to the dry cleaners on that January evening last winter. There was a street sign leading to a small, offshoot road…and I suddenly read the name on the sign: “DAWN DR.” I kind of gasped and started laughing, realizing that I had probably read that sign subconsciously before making up the song. It didn’t register in my mind because, at that point in time, I had no idea that it was going to turn into something that I would end up releasing, let alone the inspiration for the title of an EP!

Anyway, back to the serious description: I was thinking about how easy it is to unintentionally give up on something that is actually important to us (note: there’s a huge difference between good, intentional rest, and just giving up). A lot of times we aren’t faced with two options: keep going, or don’t. Apathy creeps in slowly, and usually in disguise. It’s easy to say we’re not going to give up when things are looking promising, but when you’re facing what seems like complete failure or an unknown future, that’s when the choice becomes real. It takes real faith and grace to see it through until that literal or metaphorical dawn.

LISTEN TO THE SONG HERE: fanlink.to/RorieDawnEP

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story behind the song: MEASURELESS

Measureless is a song about the immeasurable love of God. The kind of love that is not afraid to enter into the most hopeless places and situations, being not only so vast and beyond our imagination, but also closer than we can comprehend. One of my favorite lines in this song is “walls guarding all I’ve failed to prove / start to shake within the wild truth.” No matter what kind of strength we are able to muster up in this life, or how many times we fail, or whatever we face, grace is greater. Life isn’t easy, but knowing that you’re loved changes everything, and I truly believe that we are set free when we believe that. When I wrote and recorded this song, I imagined taking a blanket out into the middle of a field with a few friends, and looking up and seeing a sky glimmering with endless stars (this sonic imagery is actually drawn from a real experience in college when a group of friends and I did just that). I also wanted to create something that sounded as though John Mark McMillan and Florence and the Machine (two of my favorite artists!) made a song together, but maybe don’t tell them I said that…

LISTEN TO THE SONG HERE: fanlink.to/RorieDawnEP

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story behind the song: FALL AND RISE

Fall and Rise talks about the ebb and flow – the rise and fall – of life. There are great seasons, and there are horrible seasons. There are ups and downs, and if you’re like me, you experience those ups and downs in the same day (or hour, or minute!). In all seriousness though, I have found that in those dark moments, it is so important to know and believe that the story does not end there. So I thought of the idea of flipping the phrase “rise and fall” to “fall and rise,” and I was particularly inspired because this year has been a really hard year in many ways for a lot of the people closest to me. The song came together in one sitting this past summer. I liked it, but thought I would “save it for later.” Then, I played it at a few shows, and multiple people kept singling out, so at the very last minute (like, two days before I went back into the studio!) I switched out another song for this one, and I’m glad that I did because this ended up being probably my favorite on the EP. Tommee and I recorded it with a variety of sections (rises and falls…) and a cinematic feel, with the hopes that it might one day get picked up for TV+film.

LISTEN TO THE SONG HERE: fanlink.to/RorieDawnEP

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story behind the song: GOLD

Before I begin: these stories are little doors into my personal thought process and inspiration as I wrote these songs. As a poetic songwriter, I really value listener interpretation, as there is something special about listening to a song and making it your own. The other day, someone told me about another interpretation for “Gold” based on a relationship story, which I thought was incredibly cool. That being said, I’m excited to share these stories over the coming weeks, but if there is something in one of these songs that I don’t mention, it can certainly still be part of your personal listening experience.

So there is a bit of a theme to the songs on this EP. I’ll be honest and say that it was unintentional, however, as the choice for which songs I was going to record this summer played out, I realized that the four I chose were the right ones simply because they said exactly what I needed to say this year. Gold is about that fight for “success,” and whatever image we have of that in our head or whatever we feel has been impressed upon us. I wrote this in a season where I felt really wrapped up in an expectation of what I should be doing, or how things “should be.” I think it’s good to realize that things aren’t quite how they should be in life, but I noticed that within this intense pressure I was actually stifling the value of what I did have, and the beautiful people I live life with. There is a whole lot lot more to life than what we have, what we do, or what we achieve. I wrote the song during the summer, so it has a sort of anthemic but light, floating feeling to it. I wanted it to be open to interpretation, but to also instill that feeling of finding light in the middle of the fight.

LISTEN TO THE SONG HERE: fanlink.to/RorieDawnEP

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story behind the title: ‘DAWN’ EP

It’s really no secret that writers and poets have been captivated by dawn (the time of day) for centuries, and this little blurb that you are about to read is no exception. Every time I write and release music, it feels like my whole life story and the state of my mind are being poured out into the studio and uploaded to the internet, so I try to choose titles carefully…

The dictionary definition of dawn is: “the first appearance of light in the sky before sunrise.” Wikipedia is careful to emphasize that it is before and different from the sunrise. There is also another definition, for the verb tense of the word: “become evident to the mind; be perceived or understood.”

There is some light, but it is not quite day. You can suddenly see where you are headed, but you are still aware that you are not quite there yet. I’ve always seen tension as a catalyst for art, and here in the tension of the “not yet” and “what once was,” is that first glimpse of light – the dawn.

In these songs, I talk about some of the stuff that can be a bit difficult to talk about: doubt, depression, difficult seasons, success, failure, loss, real love, perseverance, and faith – in my life and those around me. If I was releasing a larger project, there would probably be a greater variety of themes present throughout the songs … but I have realized that there was something truly purposeful about being in the place and time that resulted in this music.

Dawn is hopeful. In the Bible, David says “My heart, O God, is steadfast; I will sing and make music with all my soul. Awake, harp and lyre! I will awaken the dawn...” Dawn is the beginning of something, and it happens over and over again, every day. In 2017, I sat here looking out into that in-between. Maybe you have a similar experience. Whatever the reason you found yourself reading this, maybe something in one of these four new songs will resonate with you. Thank you for reading, thank you for listening, and thank you for being you.

xoxo,

roriesig

LISTEN TO THE EP HERE: fanlink.to/RorieDawnEP

ps – I’ll be sharing Stories Behind the Songs + Lyrics soon (one post per week for the next four weeks!), so be on the lookout!

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(screenshot from filming the Dawn Teaser Video at Ocean City Beach, NJ)

How-To: A low budget music photo shoot… in your kitchen

Last winter, I had an idea for a single cover, but didn’t have the budget to plan a whole professional photo shoot. So I started brainstorming ways to take the photo within the confines of our tiny apartment – and that is how this came about: 

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If you haven’t heard the song: –> YOU CAN LISTEN HERE <–! But the motive of today’s blog post is to give away all of my secrets, step-by-step, and perhaps convince you that you too can take a photo in your kitchen and use it for a professional endeavor. I mean, if you want to of course. 

1. Dream up an idea 

2.  Notice that the light looks best streaming through the kitchen window in the winter

3.  Schedule the photo shoot for a Saturday morning in January

4.  Spend a few cold winter nights making a basket-full of paper cranes out of light grey paper that you could only seem to find in bulk at Office Depot (about $11.00)

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5.     Go to the fabric store and find three things: 1. The very last piece of shiny, iridescent fabric (about $12) and 2. a spool of shiny, iridescent basket filling material ($4.99) 3. Clear Fishing Thread (~$3.75) 4. Painters tape (I already had this, but I think it’s about $3 at Home Depot)

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6.     Take the original fabric that you had used as shutter curtains (shown above) off, and (using the painters tape), temporarily replace with the basket filling material. Make sure you remember that this new material is see-through and does not count as curtains!

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7.     Take the clear fishing thread and cut long pieces to hang from the ceiling (also using painters tape). Stand on a step stool to tape the birds to the ceiling (try not to fall)

8.     Take your piano bench – which just happens to be the perfect height – and set it in front of the window

9.     Invite your mom, Kathy, over to help you with the camera (thanks mom you are the best!). Adjust the settings how you want them, and take a bunch of photos

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10.  Choose the one that you’d like to use, and send to your super-talented friend/colleague Camilla to work some magic…because I don’t know about you but stovetops do not belong on a song cover unless, of course, the song is about a stove, or cooking, or something that I probably won’t write about any time soon. 

11.  And there ya go! Those are all the kitchen-based photo shoot secrets I have for today…and probably for a while. A few months at least. 

xoxo, 

roriesig

new music coming soon!

Dear Friends,

Helloooo! I’m here today to tell you a bit about a new project I’m about to release this Fall. I had the opportunity to work with an incredible producer named Tommee Profitt: and we created a 4 song EP that I couldn’t be more excited to share with you! Here’s a little video where I tell you this same thing in a little more detail, with a few too many attempts at an intro:

The first single – DAWN – drops Friday, September 15 (and the full EP will be out in November), and I am asking for YOUR help. If you love what you hear, these are a couple things you can do:

  1. Share with your music-loving friends and family, both online and in person!
  2. Follow on Spotify / Subscribe on YouTube / Instagram / Facebook – I mean, you get it. There are people asking you to do this all the time, but it really does help, and I would sure love to share lots of great content with you this season!
  3. Add the song(s) to your Spotify/Apple Music Playlists! Playlists are huge right now for artists!
  4. Leave a Review on iTunes – it really does help when people are browsing around to discover new tunes!
  5. I am always writing and planning to make more music – but before I make an album or anything like that, I am needing to grow to be able to afford a big project (or even another small project). If you really want to support these projects financially, you can download the song on iTunes for $1.29, or on Bandcamp (where you can name your price – they’ll be up here when the full EP releases). Huge thank yous to those who have tipped on ConcertWindow this year – you help to make this possible, and I am constantly blown away by your support!

I can honestly say that it is your support and friendship that keeps me writing new songs and I am FOREVER grateful to share this journey and great passion with you.

Thanks again for everything. Can’t wait to share these songs with you.

Yours Truly, ❤

roriesig