Archive for the 'creation & production' Category


Highlights Of 2013

Posted by Heather

     Happy New Year to all of you!  I hope that this will be a great year for us all.  Now that the new year is upon us, I’d like to take a few minutes to reflect on some of the good things that happened for me in 2013.

     The biggest things that happened for me involved music – the thing I love most. 🙂  For much of my life, I have considered myself to be primarily a singer. ( and I do still play the piano, occasionally ) I love to sing, and there isn’t much that brings me more joy in life than singing something I love in front of an appreciative audience. It’s a really good feeling.  I sing simply because I enjoy it, and it makes me feel happy – I’ve never had any delusions about fame or fortune.  This past year, however, I branched out and started writing lyrics with a new close friend, who writes music.  We wrote 2 songs together so far, one of which is currently being re-mixed by another mutual friend. We got together several times each month to work on music, have long chats, and a few laughs. I also became a Member of SOCAN , which was pretty exciting. I look forward to a lot more songwriting this year, and being able to share the results with you all.

     We continued  going to Karaoke fairly regularly, as it really is good practice to keep the voice in tune, and help get over the nerves. Every time you go, you are faced with a new audience, and another opportunity to try different genres, and build your confidence. This is especially good for those of us that are innately shy.  We brought a lot of new friends out with us to these fun nights last year, and had a lot of really amazing times, both singing and dancing. It is always a good crowd – supportive, down to earth, and fun-loving.

     As always, we did a lot of hiking during the year – probably more than the previous ones. We still favour Francis Point,  still go to Smuggler’s Cove once in a while, as well as the Skookumchuck, but we went on a new one this year: The Tetrahedron.  This was very different than any of the other hikes we’ve been on up here – and I will write a post about it soon, with some pics. 

     On days when we didn’t have the time to go on long hikes, we went on a lot of walks at nearby Davis Bay. 

Davis Bay Walk

     It is always a pleasant walk – the scenery is gorgeous, and the people you meet always have a smile for you.  We often follow our walk with a coffee and snack at Pier 17 across the way – we sit at a little Bistro Table overlooking the water – so relaxing. We have witnessed many a glorious sunset over Davis Bay, from that vantage point.

     As of last year, my Husband and I now both have Kayaks. This was one of the best decisions we’ve made in the 5 years  that we’ve been living up on B.C.’s Sunshine Coast, hands down.  As I have mentioned several times before, I have mainly been considered a “City Girl”, both by my friends, and myself, in the past.  I have to tell you, though, there is something absolutely mind-blowingly amazing about being out in a kayak on a sunny Summer’s Day.  Not only is there the obvious fact that you are getting fresh air, exercise, sunshine etc., but it is just the most incredibly peaceful and therapeutic thing, as well.  It didn’t matter how bad my week had been, or how stressful – I simply could not wipe the smile off my face each time we paddled up the Inlet.  The scenery was incredible – the wildlife abundant: we regularly saw Eagles, Seals, Salmon jumping out of the water, Sea Stars and Sea Cucumbers and so much more. We found some little beaches that are water-access only, where you can go and have your Lunch, and relax for a while before you continue on your journey. Some of these places even have places to camp, and portable washroom facilities.  I have to say that the times we went out kayaking this past Summer were definitely some of the happiest times we had all year. ( and now that we have the Kayaks, this fun doesn’t cost a thing )

Sechelt Inlet Kayaking

    We had a family member come for a nice visit in the Summer time, as well, and I went on a Road Trip with some good friends for a few days in September.  There were many Dinner Parties, Barbecues, Fundraisers, nights of dancing and singing and visiting with friends and family …

     So, once again, the year was filled with music, enjoying the great outdoors, and spending quality time with the people we love the most … not a bad year at all, if you ask me. 🙂

     I wish you all a healthy, happy, joyful New Year in 2014 – may it be the year that your dreams come true !!!



     Since I have been working with my friend and Producer Jarome Matthew for the past 3 years or so, we have been doing covers of 80’s songs.  We both love 80’s music, and have had a lot of fun bringing some of those songs back to life. Many of my happiest memories are of dancing at nightclubs in the 80’s with my friends, and I really miss that time when songs were really well-written – both in terms of the music, and lyrics.

     Although we have enjoyed recording these covers of 80’s tunes, we have learned how difficult it can be to get these songs “out there” as an indie artist.  Jarome knows how much I love songs from that decade, and that there are many more I would love to record, but he also knows that doing a non-cover song would be really good for me.  He has been telling me for the past couple of years that we really should be doing an original song.  At first I didn’t “get” that – I was just so excited because there are so many 80’s songs I love, and would really like to do my own version of. After having done a couple, I have seen firsthand that it is not an easy thing, especially when you are not “famous”. Every time your song gets on iTunes, there are sometimes hundreds of other versions that you have to compete with, whether you view it that way, or not. Add to that the fact that your version will always be compared to someone else’s, and things get even harder.

     Thankfully, Jarome is someone I know well and trust completely, so he was able to finally get around my stubborn side, and we did record our first original song recently.  Those of you that have kept up with my blog posts over the last few years will recall that we have done some work with Darryl Kromm of Canadian Band Strange Advance.  He most graciously agreed to do backup vocals on one of our cover songs for us. Now, he is letting us use one of his original songs that virtually no one has heard before . We are very excited to be on the verge of releasing our first song that isn’t a cover, and are totally stoked that it was written by Darryl! He is an amazing songwriter ( not just a phenomenal vocalist 🙂 and this new song he penned has an 80’s dance feel – just love it!

     It is a really cool feeling to know that once this new song is released, there won’t be any other versions for people to compare it to. There also won’t be huge roadblocks, trying to get it out there, as we won’t have someone saying they “don’t know who we are”, and therefore, won’t help us.  We are so grateful to Darryl for giving us this opportunity – without his generosity, kindness, and talent, we could not have done this.

     Jarome has sent me a couple versions of the song since we recorded it – he picked out what he felt were the best vocal takes, and played with the music a little bit, and now he’s ready to do a final mix.  It won’t be long now until he sends me a final version – maybe a couple of weeks.  I’ll let you know when it’s all finished. 🙂

     Here’s a “blast from the past” photo for all my club friends from the 80’s:

Heather Doré in the 80's


My Next Song

Posted by Heather

     For any of you that have been following my Blog posts for a while, you’ll already know that it’s been a little over a year since I was last talking about my next song.  If you are fairly new to this site, you can get filled in here.  Much has happened in the last year or so,  including the fact that my producer Jarome Matthew and his family moved to Beijing, China, where he has built a brand new Recording Studio.  Obviously, it was a little easier for us to get together when we both lived in Vancouver.  I’ve been up on The Sunshine Coast for 3 years now, and he lives far away, so logistically, it has been interesting.

     The moves haven’t stopped us from working on anything – it just makes it a little tricky when it comes to actually recording. Luckily, Jarome and his family had planned a visit to Vancouver recently which happened to fall during some holiday time for me.  We were fortunate to be able to arrange some Studio time this past Friday with Kevin Hamilton of Fresh Air Audio.  It was so good to see Jarome again, record a new song, and to meet Kevin, who was just wonderful.

Heather In The Booth

Jarome and I are both really excited to have recorded our first original song, which was written by Darryl Kromm. ( from well known Canadian Band Strange Advance )  All of our songs so far have been covers, so this is pretty cool to finally be releasing something virtually no one has heard before.

Heather In Booth Closeup

Heather Doré at Fresh Air Audio

Producer Jarome Matthew and Heather Doré

We had a great session in the Recording Studio, then we kept with tradition and went out for dinner to celebrate.  It seems every time Jarome and I record together, we always end up going out for a good meal afterwards.  As always, we made sure we split a couple of decadent desserts – after all, it was a special occasion, right? 😉

Producer Jarome Matthew and Heather Doré Dinner

Once Jarome gets back home, he’ll work on the song, and I will keep you posted as to what’s going on.  Thankyou all for your patience –  we’re looking forward to writing some of our own stuff together very soon, as well.  I’ll let you know how that goes …
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     I have mentioned before that I used to have 2 big dreams ( more like wishes ) in my life, when I was younger.  The first was to meet ” Moondoggie ” ( James Darren ) from the movie “Gidget”.  If you have been following my blog posts for a while, then you already know that I did that, in 2005.  It was definitely something I will always remember fondly. 

     I guess 2005 was a big year for me, as it was also the year I made my second dream come true, and that was to record a CD.  It was all cover tunes of 1920’s – 1950’s Big Band/Swing/Lounge music.  I recorded it at The Sound Kitchen in Vancouver, in January of that year.  Paul Airey and his wife had  part of their groovy Studio set up like an old-fashioned Diner – very cool, and lots of fun. Paul always kept it well-stocked with candy and snacks, which my musicians and I greatly appreciated.

     I was, of course, very nervous, since it was the first time I’d recorded a full CD in a Studio.  I was terrified of making mistakes, ( which would mean time and $ ) and was not as relaxed as I could have been.  Luckily, the guys I was working with could sense this, and would do silly things to make me laugh, and relax a bit.

     It was quite a learning experience, in so many ways.  We were all pretty happy with the end result. Paul Shatto did a great job making everything sound its best, and he was always there with words of encouragement.

Piano Player/Bandleader Doug Balfour Watches Paul Shatto Work His Magic

Piano Player/Bandleader Doug Balfour Watches Paul Shatto Work His Magic

Gary Mussatto Drummer Extraordinaire

Gary Mussatto Drummer Extraordinaire

Heather Doré at Sound Kitchen Studio

Heather Doré at Sound Kitchen Studio

Heather Doré and Beverly Delich in Diner

Heather Doré and Beverly Delich in Diner

Heather Doré and Gary Mussatto - Amazing Drummer

Heather Doré and Gary Mussatto - Amazing Drummer

Heather and Beverly Listening To Playback

Heather and Beverly Listening To Playback

I was fortunate to have a wonderful group of musicians working on my CD with me:
Doug Balfour – Piano ( and Bandleader )
Gary Mussatto – Drums
Karlis Silins – Bass
Ron Thompson – Guitar
Bill Abbott – Saxophone
Derry Byrne – Trumpet
Glen Tremblay – Trumpet
The kind and talented Neil Weisensel did all the arrangements of my music, and made sure things ran smoothly for me at all times.
Beverly Delich was in charge of everything, and gave it her all – she arranged for me to have the best people possible to work with- I felt so honoured to be surrounded by such talent.  It was great to work with not only such accomplished professionals, but really great guys, too.
Now it feels like such a long time ago, but at the time, it was a huge deal to me .
2005 was definitely one of the best years of my life for dreams coming true.  Maybe it’s time to think up some new ones …
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Octopus Documentary

Posted by Heather

     This Thursday night at 8:00 on CBC ( both Standard Definition and HD ) there is going to be a documentary about an incredible underwater creature – the Octopus.  The reason I am mentioning this, is that my husband and his friends were involved with this project, during the parts that were filmed here in British Columbia. They worked with the French film crew, and it was an amazing experience for them all.  I have heard many stories about the things they observed while working on this show, and can’t wait to actually see it for myself.

     The show is David Suzuki’s ” The Nature Of Things “, and this episode is called ” Aliens Of The Deep Sea “.

     I hope you will take the time to watch it – I know I won’t miss it.

 

Jérôme Julienne & John Jackson photo by Neil McDaniel

Jérôme Julienne & John Jackson photo by Neil McDaniel

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     In October of 2009,  I wrote a blog post about my re-make of ” I Want To Know What Love Is “.  It had taken a long time to get my song on iTunes and other music sites – over a year, in fact, and I was very excited that it was finally available online.  It is not easy as an Indie Artist to get music on the “big” sites, so it is always a big relief when it actually happens.

     I had received a lot of positive feedback from family and friends on that particular song, so was naturally eager for it to be easily accessible for people. My only disappointment was that I could not secure a license to sell it online in the U.S.A.  I have a lot of friends and fans in the States, and many of them weren’t pleased that they couldn’t download the song.

     The reason we had such a hard time trying to sell it in the U.S. is, to put it bluntly, because the songwriter does not know who I am.  Since I am not famous, my Producer’s requests ( and there were several ) were never responded to.  I remember hearing Mariah Carey’s version of the song on the radio one day, and thinking to myself, “I recorded my version many months ago, but because she is famous, hers gets on the radio months before mine does. ”  I have no problem with her, I just found it funny at the time that I was still waiting ( for over a year ) after I’d recorded it for it to be available online, then when it finally happened, it was a little anticlimactic, as a huge star had already released a version of it recently.

     Anyway, the purpose of this post is to let my American friends know that I received an e-mail from my Producer Jarome this morning, stating that they were finally able to find a way to secure a license to sell a limited number of copies of the song online.  So, we have the actual license, we now just have to make it happen.  I’m not sure how long this will take, but the minute it is available, I will definitely let you know.

     Thankyou to everyone who has already downloaded my version of the song, and a special thanks to my friends in the U.S. who have expressed an interest in purchasing it.  Your patience is appreciated, and so are all the kind comments you have made after listening to it on my website.  I will keep you posted.

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iTunes and CD Baby

Posted by Heather

          When people find out that I sing, they often ask me, ” Where can I get you music ? “.  Many people prefer to download their songs now, so everything I’ve recorded so far ( both the Jazz stuff, and the 80’s tunes ) can easily be found on iTunes. 

          If you would rather have an actual CD to play, and if you like Big Band/Swing/Lounge Music from the 1920’s – 1950’s, then CD Baby is where you can order my CD called “I’m Beginning To See The Light “.  There are not many copies left, so if you’ve been thinking about getting a copy of my very first CD, then the time is right …

           I am so grateful to all of you that have already purchased my CD, and/or downloaded some of my songs.  It really means a lot to me to have your support, and your feedback is always appreciated, as well.  Some people seem to like the older music best, while others dig the 80’s songs.  It is always great to hear what you like most, and why.  Please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts on my music – I’d love to hear from you !

          Right now, I am rehearsing a new 80’s style song, and will likely be recording it in the Spring, now that my Producer Jarome Matthew  is finally home from a busy trip away, working with various other Pro-Soul  Artists.  I am looking forward to getting back into the Studio and recording, as well as hearing all about Jarome’s trip, and all the amazing music he produced while travelling. 

          My last two 80’s songs were cover tunes, but the one we’re working on right now has never been heard by the general public, so we are very excited about it.  We’ll keep you posted …

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During recording of Fascination and the last time I was in the studio recording I Want To Know What Love Is, Geoff took some photos that I realized I never put up. (For those asking, I Want To Know What Love Is will be available soon on iTunes! Check back here for the release.)

Here they are, looking forward to the next session which will be for my first original song!

heather-at-the-mic

jarome and heather working on the song

heather between takes


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