Release of "Pictures In The Sky"

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Dear Friends,

Greetings from Portland, Oregon! I hope wherever you are, you're having a beautiful July 31.

I am thrilled to tell you that my second new single of 2019, "Pictures in the Sky," is now available! Today you can listen, stream, and purchase in online musical places...

This song was made possible by my patrons over at Patreon. It's not too late to jump in on the fun! Click below find out about joining the team.

The story behind the song:

Oregon is an amazing place to live, especially in the summer. I’ve lived here most of my life and feel blessed to call this place home. I made it a goal this summer to write and release a song that celebrates the season and one of my favorite things to do on a summer night - stargaze.

There are many spots in Oregon to get away from the city lights and see a wide expanse of stars in the sky. I love to keep track of the moon’s cycles and make sure I get outside during a new moon, when the sky is really dark and the most stars are visible. Finding constellations makes us feel connected to the ancients, and taking in the night sky makes us feel wonderfully small. It’s one of the few things that humans of all generations, origins and walks of life can connect on - the stars are amazing.

“Pictures in the Sky” releases on July 31, 2019, the night of a Black Moon in the US, which is a second new moon in a single month. I hope this song inspires us all to slow down, breathe a bit more deeply and enjoy the starlight together. It’s a reminder to connect with nature, each other, and our little precious existence in this universe.


Lyrics:

The summer days are here again

And I need a little slower motion

‘Cause each year goes faster than the one before

I wanna get back to breathing deeply in and out

‘Cause breathing deeply isn’t so easy anymore

So take my hand, let’s go

Down to the water all aglow

The stars are making pictures in the sky

Find a nice spot on the ground to look up high

Don’t think about tomorrow

Set yesterday aside

‘Cause the stars are making pictures in the sky

We’ll find ourselves in the Cascade mountains

Or Rockaway down by the ocean

Anywhere the sky is wide and the city lights are low

It’ll be alright if we lose ourselves in the constellations

Shining so bright with the fiery light of long ago

So take my hand, and let’s go

Down to the water all aglow

The stars are making pictures in the sky

Find a nice spot on the ground to look up high

Don’t think about tomorrow

Set yesterday aside

‘Cause the stars are making pictures in the sky

What a way to be alive, lying here with you in the starlight

What a way to be alive, lying here with you in the starlight

What a way to be alive, lying here with you in the starlight

I’m feeling so alive!

So take my hand, and let’s go

Down to the water all aglow

The stars are making pictures in the sky

Find a nice spot on the ground to look up high

Don’t think about tomorrow

Set yesterday aside

‘Cause the stars are making pictures in the sky

Oh, the stars are making pictures in the sky

Naomi LaViolette: composition & vocals

Gus Berry: production, engineering, instruments, vocals & electronic programming


The artwork to accompany “Pictures in the Sky” is a photograph by Jessica Selig, photographer, hiker, camper, and nature lover living in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

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To find out more about her artistic process or inquire about photos, email Jessica: jess@jesspdx.com

Or visit: www.jesspdx.com

www.instagram.com/jess_pdx

It brings me so much joy to feature talented visual artists alongside my songs. Thank you, thank you, to Jessica!

Finally, for any of you curious about my creative process, I thought I’d share a few notes about the composition of this song and musical choices in the writing, arrangement and recording.

One of my creative goals for 2019 is to release all of my new songs with guitar accompaniment. Being that piano is my primary instrument, this is definitely a stretch for me! But guitar is so perfect for this song, because it’s a little easier to carry along for a night of stargazing. I wanted this song to feel like something a group could sing around a campfire up the mountains, or sitting on a blanket on the beach.

I sent a vocal / guitar demo to my good friend and producer Gus Berry, and we worked together to create the track. It’s a combination of acoustic instruments - guitar, ukulele, shaker and drums - with electronic sounds - electric guitar with delay effects, ambient synth sounds, and reverses in the bass track. My hope is that it seamlessly blends an organic, natural essence with something atmospheric and other-worldly.

Although my other goal with this summer release was to write a “happy” song, I couldn’t help but start with just a touch of melancholy in the first verse, when I sing “I need a little slower motion” and “breathing deeply isn’t so easy anymore.” But the song doesn’t stay in that spot for long - stargazing becomes the antidote to the fast-pace rush of life. The pre-chorus is all about inviting someone you love to join you - “take my hand and let’s go.” This could be a child, a lover, a friend, a grandparent - you can enjoy the stars with basically anyone and everyone! The light we see from stars began a long time ago, traveling across space for many many years, but enjoying it is something that happens in the moment. When the chorus says “Don’t think about tomorrow, set yesterday aside,” it’s referring to that gift from the stars to have a very present-moment experience.

The “ohs” after the chorus are designed to have a communal, universal feel. Gus and his wife added some vocals in those sections, and they expand in layers throughout the song. I hope it sounds like a whole bunch of people coming together to connect and enjoy the glory of the stars.

So much thanks to my patrons over at Patreon; it's because of their support that I'm able to write, record, and release new music throughout the year. Extra shout out to patrons pledged at $15/month and above (their names go on everything I make): Lauren Rykert, Wayne Richards, Dwight and Penny Van Vleet, Grace and Mike Rich, Jan Schaeffer, Jennifer Davis, Jeri Haskins, Tom and Karol Rykert, Caryn Tilton, Steve and Joni Goodwin, and Melissa Canaday.

Friends, Thank YOU, for your interest in my musical work. It means so much to me to share it with you. If you think this song would help anyone, please pass it along. May music and the stars help us all feel more connected.

XO and love,

naomi