Category Archives: Music

Fly a Little Higher Blog Tour


This post is part of the Fly a Little Higher Blog Tour which I am delighted to be a part of along with hundreds of bloggers raising awareness and giving hope to those with cancer. To learn more and join us, CLICK HERE.

In February of last year I attended Up, Up, Up! A Concert 4 Zach and I saw a young man living his dream. Everyone was there to hear him sing his song, “Clouds”, and he was loving every moment. Most people have been touched by cancer in one form or another. I’ve unfortunately witnessed cancer take my grandmother and uncle.

wpid-20140505_230945.jpgLaura Sobiech, Zach’s mom, had a book signing at the Mall of America on May 4th for Fly a Little Higher. She spoke about finding guitar picks in unlikely places all the time since Zach passed away. They handed out guitar picks with Zach’s picture on it to people in the autograph line. While Laura signed autographs they played a video of Zach with his family and friends. I was very moved by how strong Zach was and his ability to smile even though he knew his time was coming to an end here on earth.

Sometimes cancer takes the special people in our lives to teach us how to get off our butt and live our lives to the fullest instead of letting life pass us by. This by no means makes it any easier to lose a loved one. I look forward to reading Fly a Little Higher even though I’m sure it will be a difficult read emotionally.

Life for a cancer patient is not a bed of roses and yet Zach and my uncle chose to be strong and lived their lives to the fullest, rarely letting their illness get them down.

Are you living every day like it might be your last?
What are you waiting for?

bookFly a Little Higher is written by Laura Sobiech, the mother of Zach Sobiech. Laura spent the last three years walking the road of cancer with her teenage son, Zach, and blogging about their battle with the disease. Zach wrote the song “Clouds” which hit #1 on iTunes the same week he passed away in May 2013. Grab your copy HERE.



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Ryan & Shannon’s Largest “Clouds” Choir

Zach Sobiech Breaking UpI will dare to say that Minnesotans are the best! I first heard Zach Sobiech’s song Clouds last year during KS95 for Kids marathon and was instantly drawn to this song. I don’t know how a song of such sorrow can be so beautiful but it is. I quickly bought tickets to go see Zach at his benefit concert at the Varsity Theater here in Minneapolis and was mesmerized by his music, his stage presence, and his overall kindness and love for everyone.

Yesterday 5,000 people gathered at the Mall of America to sing Zach’s song Clouds and it was beautiful! After seeing the video KS95 created, my favorite part is his parents at the end. I cannot imagine how they are feeling with this outpouring of support from the Minneapolis community and hearing their son’s words and music sung by so many. Check out KS95’s video from the Mall of America of Zach Sobiech’s song Clouds.

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Fact is Stranger Than Fiction

wpid-20130802_214311.jpgFor my birthday, two of my friends bought me a ticket to see Les Miserables with them at the Orpheum Theater in Minneapolis, MN. I have some of the greatest friends imaginable, I know. Every time we go to a play together we eat beforehand at Rock Bottom Brewery a block away from the theater. Right before we were to leave I decided I better go to the restroom to avoid the line at the theater. I told my table of friends I would be right back and walked away. Apparently everyone had the same idea as I did because there were about four women in line when I opened the door to the restroom. So there I stood, at the beginning of the strangest five minutes I’ve encountered in a long time.

The bathroom door was flung open and two more women push their way into a small space. One was the manager and the other was a woman who was about to get sick. The manager scrambles to pull the lid off the garbage can because the five stalls are full. The sick woman is on her knees with her head in the garbage when the manager looks at us in line and asks if it would be okay if she goes into the next stall that opens up. We all say yes and she leaves to get a glass of water. The sick woman moves into a stall and after a couple of seconds she says, “I just want you all to know that I have food poisoning and that I’m not drunk. We had brats for lunch and my kids are sick at home and the doctor said it’s food poisoning. I felt fine earlier but it just hit me.” As women, most of us sympathize with her, some said they hoped she felt better. A stall finally opens up for me to go into and the sick woman answers her cell phone and proceeds to tell someone she is getting sick and she had to hand her camera to a blogger to finish taking pictures for her. She had finished interviewing Sheryl Crow and suddenly felt sick and ran out.

English: Sheryl Crow - Red Dress Collection (H...

English: Sheryl Crow – Red Dress Collection (Heart Truth) – 2005 Français : Sheryl Crow – Red Dress Collection (Heart Truth) – 2005 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay, by this point I’m wondering who this woman is and what she does for a living. I’m pretty impressed she had the opportunity to meet and interview Sheryl Crow and now I really feel bad for her that she is missing this great opportunity that she was lucky to have.

Oh, it gets better!

I am standing at the sink washing my hands and two more women come flying into the bathroom. One of them pulls a black, strapless bra out of her purse and hands it to her friend who promptly drops the top of her dress right in front of the door and puts the bra on. I can’t believe what I am seeing but really it shouldn’t have surprised me; I’m in downtown Minneapolis on a Friday night.  I turn around to dry my hands and beeline it past them to the door.

I clear the door to discover a man collapsing onto the floor with a waitress yelling for someone to call 911. Several people are already helping him so in a daze I head back to my table of friends. I get back and tell my friends about the craziest five-minute trip to the bathroom and as I’m finishing my friend nods and says, “There’s the ambulance.” I turned around and sure enough, in the time it took me to walk from the restroom to my table (about 15 seconds) the ambulance was already there.

This is quite possibly the craziest five-minute trip to the bathroom I’ve ever had!

This, my writing friends, is what good books are made of. I couldn’t have made this experience up if I had wanted to and made it sound believable. I could take this experience and write a story from my perspective, the sick woman’s, the two strapless bra women, the man collapsing in the hall, and the waitress.

Once again, story starters are all around us if we are actively aware of our surroundings.

The play was wonderful and there were no more strange occurrences.


Filed under Music, Writing

Farewell Zach Sobiech

English: Red rose

English: Red rose (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I sat down to write a post on editing when I was compelled to write this post instead.

I posted about Zach Sobiech back in February when I attended a benefit at The Varsity Theater for Zach. Zach’s music touched millions of people all over the world. Go ahead and google his name, you will see many interviews and videos featuring Zach.

Zach Sobiech, 18 years old, lost his battle with cancer with morning.

This video, by SoulPancake, is an amazing tribute to Zach. His positive attitude and love of life, family, and friends shined through in everything he did.

SoulPancake made another video for Clouds a song Zach wrote and sang.

Zach’s music CD, A Firm Handshake, can be found on iTunes.

May peace be with Zach’s family and friends, your loss is felt around the world.

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Great Music For A Great Cause

Life was crazy busy this past week so this is a little later than I anticipated. Last Saturday I went to the Up, Up, Up! A Concert 4 Zach at the Varsity Theater with a group of friends. It was an all ages show showcasing Zach Sobiech and Vicci Martinez, with proceeds going to Zach Sobiech Osteosarcoma Fund, so it was totally worth the time and money to go,  but I really felt my age. Don’t get me wrong, I had a blast and I’m very glad I went but, I discovered I really can’t stand for 5 hours in high heels and enjoy it. I had never been to the Varsity Theater and I didn’t know what to expect. I discovered that 99.9% of the space there is standing room only and the bathrooms are amazing! Ok, I know that sounds really weird but it’s probably the coolest bathroom I’ve ever seen and I wish I would have taken pictures. Yes, it was that cool. Go and check them out yourself. This concert drew a diverse crowd from infants to grandparents and everyone was enjoying the music. Sometimes benefits like this one create an atmosphere of guilt and turn into a downer of an evening but not this one. The music was turned up, everyone was engaged, and there wasn’t a down moment. The evening was a success and money was raised for a good cause.

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