So it's 2018...

The door has opened, and we have plans for the new year.  One of the most frequently asked questions we are getting at the moment is:

"when will there be more?"

The answer? SOON. 

What's next?

We're currently working on our largest project, recording and releasing our long-awaited full-length album-

Diverted Eyes

Diverted Eyes has quite a history at this point, as it has been "in the works" for almost two years now.

This project was the idea that started it all, after spending a week down at KMGLife Studios in Boulder, CO, recording our then-EP, we decided to pack up our material possessions and move closer to the music scene in Colorado. 

The project then was only five songs, some original works we are still very proud of and inspired by. But life happens, as it does, and plans change. We figured out very quickly how much needed to be done to do this project well. 

Five songs eventually turned to ten as we decided to create a full-length album, an ambitious project for sure, yet a must. These ten will be (hopefully) quite familiar with any of our live audiences. 

We are currently in the recording process for this project, with the goal of releasing this album by the end of 2018! It will be... an "Experience". ;)

What about the Equine series?

Hopefully by now you have heard of and listened to our first major independent project, our EP Equine 1.

This project reassured us that we could control our products, and boy have we learned some things in the process! Between recording at a professional studio and learning how to use our own equipment, we have made leaps and bounds in our independent quality of sound. 

After Diverted Eyes, the next project out will be-

Equine 2

With at least 5, possibly 6 songs, Equine 2 will be released in a very similar manner to its predecessor.

After its release, you will be able to stream it here on our website or on YouTube, or purchase a physical copy of the EP directly from us (support the cause!).

This will be a slightly different direction in songwriting however, with each song being more of an individual idea instead of intentionally trying to write a story (but hey, if you interpret a story, please tell us!).

Like with Equine 1, we are writing each of these songs as we record them (more or less). They are specifically for this project, and we will love to share them with you at our live shows after the release. 

This project so far does NOT have any cover art...

Have any suggestions? Please comment on this blog post or send us a message/email about it! We intend to keep the train of creating our own art for our music going, and we would LOVE to take inspiration from our listeners. 

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Thank you all again so much, your support means the world. From all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴

We did it!!!✨🎶

Here we are, almost a week out from our first digitally-distributed music release!

 
 

It still doesn't feel real yet. And I will say- it's amazing to be able to listen to our music right along with my normal listenings on my favorite digital music platform. We've been watching our play numbers creep up with the excitement of a kid at Christmas <3 so thank you, THANK YOU.

Prospect is out.

So tell anyone you feel inclined to tell, every single action taken to spread the word helps us out SO MUCH (even if it seems small). So if you could, please rate Prospect on your music player whatever you feel it deserves. Follow us on Spotify, buy Prospect on iTunes (or Amazon Music, Google Play Music, etc...). 

 
 
 

We talked about the lyrics during our weekly Date Night livestream, and so I thought we would share the whole official lyrics with you.

prospect

Can the child that’s in our hearts
Come out to play? Learn to sing again?
And darling can you show the world
That even after all, love is still our song

See what’s been defined and
See what’s been refined
We know what lies ahead and
What the alibis meant to me and
Some just might want to be immune
Some just might want see it through
All the old things get older
All the bold things get bolder

I can feel, the love you give to the universe
I can feel, the love you give to a world that hurts
A world that hurts

Can the child that’s in our hearts
Come out to play? Learn to sing again?
And darling can we show the world
That even after all, love is still our song

Take the blind and make them see and
Take the pawn and make a king now
Who made man’s mouth and
Who do we look to now?
There is life, life leaves what was vain
There is life, life can be obtained
There is love, love only sustains
There is love, love only remains

I can feel, the love you give to the universe
I can feel, the love you give to a world that hurts
A world that hurts

Can the child that’s in our hearts
Come out to play? Learn to sing again?
And darling can we show the world
That even after all, love is still our song
Can the child that’s in our hearts
Come out to play? Learn to sing again?
And darling can we show the world
That even after all, love is still our song

Love for all and all for love now
Everything falls into its place now
Love for all and all for love now
Everything falls into its place now

Can the child that’s in our hearts
Come out to play? Learn to sing again?
And darling can we show the world
That even after all, love is still our song
Try to imagine with me (ooh)
Try to believe with me (ooh)
Try to imagine with me (ooh)
Try to believe with me (ooh)

 

At the end of the day, we just want everyone to realize that they have more to give than they think, and that the world CAN be a better place.  Love your family and be kind to strangers. 

Thank you from all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴

Two More Days!!!🎉

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Alright everyone, the time is almost here! In two more days, Prospect will finally be available for online purchase. I have to say, there are a lot of emotions happening right now. 

This week has already been off as far as our regularly-scheduled content goes, and I'm sure everyone feels the lack of motivation that happens during that week of craziness between Christmas and New Years. What day is it? Should I be doing something? Nobody knows. 

With that being said, this week's post will be a little different than our single-topic posts. But I mean, what IS normal anyway? 

Jack did an amazing job stitching together our holiday video for this week, and we'd love to share it with you.

 
 

With a combined 45 hours of travel time, lots of love, and even one car crash, we had quite the weekend. We're happy to all be back at the Corral, to say the least, if a little worn from the experience. It's been difficult to remember that we're still supposed to be working! 

Now it's just time to prep for the release party, and keep on recording.

Have I mentioned that we've started the recording process for our long-awaited album, Diverted Eyes? 

Because that is totally happening (get hyped! But please buy Prospect too 😂)

- - -

Until Monday comes, I hope that you all have a wonderful weekend full of love and relaxation and contemplation for the new year. And on Monday, get ready to party and share some awesome music with your family and friends (that's what we'll be doing, anyway!)! 

We appreciate you all endlessly, and hope that you enjoy what we've worked so hard to provide❤

From all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴❤

Look on the Bright Side ✨

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The holidays are here upon us, and we've been thinking a lot about the relationships we have with those around us.  This week might be a little stray from the normal blog path, but I feel it will be (hopefully) important nonetheless.

Relationships are hard.

There's no way around it, not every interaction with every person in your life will be good.  Humans have a funny way of letting emotions, a very important part of our humanity, get in the way of creating a positive situation.  People aren't usually just jerks because they enjoy making people feel bad (even if they say they do).  

It's important to remember, when interacting with those around you, that not all humans are having a good time.  They may be so upset that they unintentionally take it out on those around them who are undeserving, which can be hurtful and hard to process.  How are you supposed to respond to someone you love being wrongfully negative towards you?

This can come in many forms:  emotional outbursts over something unimportant, long-term criticism, an inability to see the positive around them.  But what on earth can you do?

Leave them.

As surprising as this might sound, this is always an option.  You never, NEVER, have to keep someone in your life if they are toxic.  There is a balance, and if someone who is in your life consistently brings you down, you have the right to decide to remove them from your life.  This goes back to what we talked about in the Balance blog, you NEED to take care of yourself before you can effectively help others. 

Don't be afraid to ask for help in this decision,

no one said it was an easy one.  But at the end of the day, your happiness and well-being is  more important. 

or you can...

Love them regardless.

Do what you can.  Usually someone who is being negative has negative feelings they are trying to sort through and understand.  I have found that any time my family has done something negative or hurtful that there was always an underlying reason, and just being there for them to help them through their negativity has brought me closer to them.  Understanding that not everything is about you, even when it is TO you. 

Love is a choice.

People have a strange idea about how family and relationships work, like everything will always happen like you expect them to and nothing strange will ever happen.  Unfortunately living is more real than that. 

In order to develop strong, healthy relationships with the people around you, you have to continue to love them and care for them even when they do things that you don't like.  Every person has free will, and things WILL happen.  This is a fact.  And your choice to continually love those around you will only benefit you and your own happiness as well as theirs.  

This holiday season, tensions may be high.  But the reason for gathering and celebrating is to be with one another and love each other.  Your choice to acknowledge the positives in any situation and persevere through the negatives will teach those around you as well.

  

With all this, we hope that you have an amazing holiday season.  Remember to breathe, and love. 

-Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light✌🐴❤

 

Songwriting: Square One 🔲

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Almost everyone has been there:

"I'm going to write a song."

But for many people, that might be where that thought ends.  You write a few lines and say to yourself, "why am I even trying? This is terrible!"

I would like, this week, to ease some of your worries and frustrations. 

How do you write a song?

Google this, you won't be the only search.  Some people will go on and on about the importance of music theory, others the lyrics, and others still will go on about something specific that you might not fully understand.  But what makes a good song?  I would first start off with asking yourself:

Why am I writing this song?

Depending on your musical history and approach to being creative, the purpose behind the song you are writing can vary wildly.  Are you writing this to woo a prospective lover?  To remind a friend that they are not alone?  To express an emotion to connect with other humans?  To adventure through a musical genre you would like to get better acquainted with? 

My first advice would be:

always keep in mind your purpose

You don't write a message in text-speak to your CEO boss, and you wouldn't write a 5-page essay to your friend about your weekend plans.  In general, keeping in mind your audience and mood will greatly influence how you approach structuring your song. 

That being said, using contrasting methods can have a great effect on your songwriting.  Paramore's new album After Laughter generally has a very uplifting beat and sound, with a sad and depressed message (ie. Fake Happy and Hard Times). This can definitely be used to your advantage! 

All this being said, I would say that the biggest piece of advice any of us in Fat Stallion can give would be: 

Be gentle with and trust yourself.

Writing a song is making art.  Your art will be what it will be, and the world will interpret it as it will.  But at the end of the day, you wrote it and it is what it is.  Do something that makes you happy, draw from the influences that inspire you, and trust yourself to make something amazing. 

The very fact that YOU are making it vs. anyone else puts your creation in its own field.  Every artist is their own worst critic, and you will be inclined to be very harsh with yourself over your creations.  With that, you will want to quit projects if you don't view them as "perfect", but who exactly are you comparing yourself to?

It's not healthy to compare yourself to other people.

The only Ed Sheeran on Earth is the man himself!  The only woman on the planet that will perform as well as P!nk is Alecia Moore (see what I did there?). 

Every person who writes has something individual to add to the music world.

It is not fair to anyone to dip out because you are not more of a person than someone who already exists.  There are thousands of amazing guitar players in the world, and every one of them are valid and amazing artists.  As cliche as it is, only YOU can be the best YOU (this is truer than true!). 

This being said, always try to be the best YOU that you can be!  The only comparison that is valuable is to compare yourself to who you were yesterday.  

How do we write music?

I asked all the guys for their thoughts on songwriting in general.  Jack Elliott had this to say:

"When writing music, there are a ton of different elements that cross my mind. From nerdy things like phrase structure, harmonic contour, and sonic arrangement, to more abstract thoughts like emotional arc, character/thematic development, and technical poetic practices. The single most important thing though, is vision [the message]. If I don't have a vision for how I want the final recording of the final arrangement to sound, then it is hard for me to finish a project. Sometimes a melody or riff will give me the vision, sometimes the poem will elicit an emotional vision, and sometimes I will only have pieces of an idea, and over the course of the composition, the vision will reveal itself. These are the most exciting moments, when a musical idea grabs you by the hand and leads you where it needs to go. Usually by about half way through writing, the vision becomes clear, and the rest is easy."

And Light had this insight:

"Song writing for me usually comes from a random line or lyric that gets stuck in my head. I'll obsess over it, just replaying it over and over until I write it down or play it out. Sometimes those thoughts become full ideas and songs and sometimes they don't, but most of my writing starts with a random phrase or line. After that I'll share it with the group and we begin the "shared writing process" and make something new that reflects a little of everyone in the band. Most important for me is that I write about what I care about, otherwise I feel like it'll come off as insincere and for myself that would be an injustice to the music I hope to make."

Riley had this to say:

"For me, songwriting is life. I am a very introverted person who oftentimes finds it difficult to express myself the way I would really like to. Songwriting and performing the songs that I’ve written allows me to do just that. I am able to take the mask off and make myself completely vulnerable to anyone that is listening. It is liberating. And in regards to the process of songwriting, I am all over the place. Sometimes I’ll write the chord progression and hooks first and sometimes the lyrics come first. Either way, I make sure to put as much emotion into the song as I can muster. I want to build relationships and relate to people and have people to relate to me through music. My goal is to make people cry even if they don’t speak my same language. I absolutely love to write music, I can’t imagine myself not doing it!"

As for myself (Emma Dawn!), I will really depend on my mood and quest.  Beyond what I've written so far in this blog, I have this to say.  When I wrote Seeds, my intent was to connect with others over a very specific feeling regarding mental health and the human condition in general.  I wanted to remind listeners that there are people around who want to help, and that relate to what they may be experiencing.  I want people to understand that I am sincere when I perform it as well, and for me, just a little bit of chordal movement and simple melody get this mood across well.  Simplicity in writing goes a long way to making your writing seem original, too much can very quickly seem forced and insincere (in my own opinion. Again, your music is your own!). I write to relate to people, and to express my feelings.  I only feel as if I've failed if I do not have an emotional response to my performance. 

So what now? 

Try it!  Write a song, play with your words and with your chords and feelings.  My favorite saying on the subject is:

"No newborn baby is pretty in its first moments.  This doesn't make the event unimportant or any less amazing!"

Let your newborn song take its first few moments to develop, and give it the love and attention it needs to grow into the amazing adult it can be.  This process is different for every artist, but the most important part is to trust yourself and give your art the opportunity to blossom that many don't allow. 

But always remember that your art is amazing and worthwhile, even if each project only leads you to your own artistic growth and never sees a stage or recording studio.  

If it means something to you, then you have succeeded.  

And in the meantime, you are always more than welcome to reach out to us for advice.  We love you, and want to see you succeed and grow! 👍

(Check out this week's LIVESTREAM on this very topic!)

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We really hope that you found this interesting and/or helpful, so please let me know your thoughts and comments down below!  And let me know you took the time to read by leaving a like!  You are all the best, and we're so excited to have you with us.

Thoughtfully and respectfully from all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴❤

Keeping the balance 🤹

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Managing a dream is a lot of work, and takes some organization skills.  Anyone who intends to create their own career has a massive task ahead of them, and it is all too easy to get carried away trying to whittle away at the to-do list.  This often means spending an entire day answering emails, managing social media, and of course focusing on the business at hand. 

For Fat Stallion of course this means putting our hearts into the music, spending time crafting our songs and practicing solo and rehearsing as a group.  This also means brainstorming, tweaking, and playing again and again and again.  This is booking gigs and researching festivals, and keeping in touch with other musician friends.  But especially at the beginning, there is so much more to take into consideration, including day jobs and: keeping our sanity.

What is balance?

This I hope would be an easy answer, but as a work-a-holic from a young age, I understand this doesn't come easy for everyone. 

Simply put, having balance in your worklife means that you can allocate appropriate amounts of time to your work and to your own well-being.

We've all heard the adage: take care of yourself before others.  While at first this seems selfish, it's only logical.  If you are falling behind on sleep, on alone time, on food or anything else, how are you supposed to expect yourself to do anything at all?  A machine can only work as well as it is maintained, and so falling behind on self-care can be disastrous for a budding entrepreneur. 

how do i know if i have balance?

Stress is natural.  It is easy to assume that any amount of stress indicates a need to back off, but I would say that this isn't always true.  To me, stress means that maybe I could have organised my time better, maybe the task is very important to me, maybe I have high expectations of myself for something I don't know yet that I can do.  This is all too common for me anymore as a part of Fat Stallion, but if I have learned anything it is that I, and you, are far more capable than we thought.  

I get stressed even thinking about this blog!  But taking a step back from that initial anxiety showed me how much I care about the interactions that we as a band have with our audience and friends.  And so, this stress turned into fuel to make something helpful. ❤

So back to the question: How do you know if you have balance?  There are some questions you can ask:

"How am I sleeping lately?"

"Are my negative feelings outnumbering my positive feelings?"

"Am I accomplishing my goals?"

"are my timeline and self-set deadlines reasonable?"

If any of your answers make you suspicious, I would take a moment to think about that and find some way to re-evaluate.  You do what you need to do. :)

How do you create balance?

This answer is unique to each person who asks.  What I can do for you here and now is offer suggestions based on what I and the rest of the band like to do to keep ourselves running.  What do you like to do (beyond what you are making your career out of)?

For Riley, this means dedicating some of his time to his faith.  Attending his church and spending time with his friends, family, and acquaintances every week helps him focus his energy on his own health and purpose. 

For Light, this means focusing on his health in a more literal sense.  He spends a few nights a week with Jack Elliott at a Gracie Jiu Jitsu gym practicing his martial arts, and time at home practicing yoga and meditating.  Keeping his mental and physical game sharp helps him rejuvenate for his time in our music.

Other than practicing Gracie Jiu Jitsu with Light, Jack Elliott enjoys teaching his music students and spending time learning more about music production and putting it to practice in our studio.  Jack also spends his time working with words, you'll have to check out his Instagram to see some of his invoking poetry.

For myself, this means taking time to enjoy my other art interests, mostly my yarn crafts.  This week I spent my time turning frustration and stress into making some knitted winter hats for Light and I's nieces and nephews for Christmas.  Other times Light and I will fold Origami, or spend time painting or drawing. 

This week, we even spent our weekly FB livestream Date Night making crafts as a group! Check it out :)

 
 

At the end of the day, make living your life worthwhile.  Creating your career and putting all that you can into your work is a noble trait, but make sure you have enough left over to live your life as well.  Shoot, they even take the time to write about this idea in Forbes!  They even spent less time writing about it, it seems. 😂 

We really hope that you found this interesting and/or helpful, so please let me know your thoughts and comments down below!  And let me know you took the time to read by leaving a like!  You are all the best, and we're so excited to have you with us.

Thoughtfully and respectfully from all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴❤

All about recording🎶

Recording can be an amazing or daunting experience in the minds of modern musicians.  There will be questions,

"What do I need to bring? What IS being prepared?"

"How will this change what my fans think of me?"

"Will this really be MY music?"

"Am I wasting my money?  How do prices compare between studios?"

These are all valid hesitations and thoughts, the same that even we had as we started our musical adventure and began feeling out how we would like to grow our brand as Fat Stallion.

And while we are far from end-all be-all experts on the subject, we are more than happy to share our journey through the recording world with you! 

The big decision...

We were very lucky, and met some really amazing people early on in our adventure who are higher-ups in the company KMGLife.  After some talking and budgeting, we decided to make the plunge and go down to Boulder to record an EP (our first major project!).  You will need to compare many facets of recording businesses, and decide what is going to be right for you.

But why did we decide to do this?

For us, there were many things to take into account.  We were new as a band and as friends, still going to school, and definitely not the musicians we are today.  But we had a dream, and the first goal was to get ourselves some professional content!  So first:

The price was right.

As you peruse the internet for recording studios and their prices, you'll notice price tags differ WILDLY.  While we did have a recording studio in the town we lived in that was within our budget, we knew that the value we would get with KMGLife would greatly outdo anything we could find locally.  We were given an amazing deal, and we knew the experience would be well worth the price.  And so we pooled our funds and booked our week, with the plan of recording our 5 best songs. 

How do you equip yourself for this?

We did our very best at being as prepared as we could be.  We rehearsed like madmen, and packed up all our musical essentials.  Things like:

  • Our instruments, including the amps/gear (AND DEFINITELY YOUR STRINGS) we regularly use.  While KMGLife did provide things for us, like higher-quality guitars, amps, and drumheads aimed at getting a more specific sound, not all studios will provide this service.  
  • Our music!  While we memorize all of our tunes (as one should before recording...), we did make a point to bring along our rehearsal charts for reference, and making notes and adjustments.
  • Our willingness to listen, learn, and adjust.  I cannot stress enough how important it is to be able to change, even if you think what you are doing is perfect.  A recording technician hears everything, and is trained to make your music the best that it can be.  Be willing to grow and change!

So what did we learn?

First and foremost, we were given a large reality check.  But before I go down that track, we learned that this was what we wanted to do with our life.  After an absolutely life-changing week, we became closer than ever.  We decided to move and make being Fat Stallion our career!

Beyond self-discovery, we learned after some time that we were not the group that we thought we were.  An expression we like to use is 

"Recording is brutally honest."

We finally could see what our music was really like, and how we interacted with each other within the group.  There were plenty of toes being stepped on, and general messiness that detracted from the overall feel we were going for with our music.  But without this experience, we might never have known.  We learned exactly how much more in tune with each other we really needed to be to be successful. 

But back to why we decided to record, and how we made our decision...

We knew that this studio had our best sound in mind.

A good recording technician is someone who can turn themselves into an extension of the band.  Different recording techniques can drastically affect the sound of the music, for better or for worse.  This person needs to very quickly understand the goal of the band, the personality of the players, and the same for each song that will be recorded.  This is a tall order, and one that not all studios can really say they can fulfill.  Do your due diligence as you prepare to record: listen to the products these places have put out, read reviews, TALK to them to make sure that they are on your wavelength.  There is no "best" when it comes to personality, only what will be good for your sound.

This is where things get tricky- not every technician is perfect for you.  Some musicians decide against outside help entirely to hopefully avoid this musical-miscommunication, to keep the authenticity of their music.  We as Fat Stallion see the benefit of both methods, as you might see in our mix of independent and professional projects.  

It's good to have good-quality recordings.

Having professional-sounding music is essential in this day and age.  With the listening technology progressing the way that it is, having excellently mixed and mastered music to offer your fans is more important than ever.  Good recording technicians can turn your music into an absolute experience, for original fans and new!

But why else go to a recording studio?

It's all about who you know.  

At the end of the day, we are only where we are because of who we are as PEOPLE, not necessarily as musicians.  Those first impressions matter, and while sheer luck has a lot to do with it, your rapport with the people around you will have a great effect on who will want to work with you.  This will mean many different things to different people with different goals, but for us as Fat Stallion, it means being genuine with those around us.

Beyond meeting these people, your actions will dictate who the people you meet will talk to, and so on.  The recording world is a giant club, and expanding your musical business can really hinge on your ability to make good impressions, so that people are inclined to spread the word.  One thing will quickly lead to another... So make your best decisions based on what your musical goals are (looking at you, underground 😉).

The first studio that looks good isn't the only one!

We have spent a lot of time looking at different studios that offer different services and have different people. Our latest professional recording to be released was done down in Lakewood, CO at The Spot Studios, which in many ways was an entirely different vibe than KMGLife.

Does this make it better?  Worse?  That is all up for interpretation.  What matters here now however is that we have taken many things home with us...

What now?

Now we are beginning our adventure as an affordable recording studio option in the northern Colorado area, and we are calling ourselves- 

Diverted studios.

With artist accommodations such as housing and studio musicians, we are entering the business at an affordable rate and with professional results. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have, at fatstallionband@gmail.com or ask Jack Elliott directly through any of his social media platforms or via email.

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We really hope that you found this interesting and/or helpful, so please let me know your thoughts and comments down below!  And let me know you took the time to read by leaving a like!  You are all the best, and we're so excited to have you with us.

Thoughtfully and respectfully from all of us in Fat Stallion-

Emma Dawn, Jack Elliott, Riley, and Light ✌🐴❤