Greetings! We hope you’re well.
It’s been a while since we’ve connected, and so much has happened in the world. Joël, Mingus, and I are thankful for good health as we continue navigating the learning curves in our industry’s changing technology. It’s a fascinating time to be a musician; methods of distributing and experiencing music seem to mutate daily, but we’re surfing the swells of change, recently making major upgrades in our studio system and re-designing our website to better reflect our current work, which focuses more and more on producing original music for licensing.
Working with agencies that distribute our music internationally in ambient settings, it’s been fascinating to learn what gets played where. It makes sense that tracks from Joël’s Mandala Meditation Series: Lullaby of the Flatlands are played in European gyms and fitness centers; but their inclusion on the soundtrack for family fun center KidZania––Turkey’s equivalent to Chuck E. Cheese––is an eye-opener. And never in a million years would we have guessed that “No Place Like Home for Christmas” would get over 4000 airplays last season in Greece and almost 7000 in Lithuania, or that the Catalan Christmas song “El Noi de la Mare” would remain popular in the Russian Federation long after the holiday season is over. But the biggest surprise is “Grim Fairy Tale,” the political protest song from Myths & Fables, with over 8000 plays in China! It fills us with wonder that we can communicate with someone on the other side of the world in the language of music––without ever showing our faces.
On the literary front, several of our music/voiceover projects with L.A.-based experimental writer Janis Butler Holm have been published. It’s been great fun working with her Dadaist/Surrealist-influenced sound poems; check out our collaborations here and here. Four of my food porn poems appeared in the Canadian humor magazine Feathertale, and Voices de la Luna published “Sacred Music,” a poem in memory of playwright Sterling Houston (see the video here, with Joël’s music “The Well”). My short story “1964” is in its second re-printing, now readable online. I’m so grateful that this particular work, a snapshot of place, privilege, and prejudice, continues to find a wider audience.
We’re working on a lot of new music, and Joël’s soundtrack EP Wall in the Desert will be released soon. In the language of music, three extended tracks depict the dramatic and dangerous journey of those displaced by violence, hunger, and catastrophic climate change. Proceeds from digital sales and streaming will benefit organizations serving the needs of refugees and asylum seekers.
We’re in the midst of remodeling www.dragonladyrecords.com, which will enable us to sell downloads of our music directly from our online store. Exciting stuff is coming up, so please keep in touch. Sign up for our email list here; like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. And if you have a question, you can always email us here.
Best wishes always, and may your every day be filled with love and music!
Bett & Joël
(You can always access our old blog here.)