music

Hello, My name is Joannah Lodico...

www.photolodico.com

www.photolodico.com

Hello, my name is Joannah Lodico, and I believe that music and the performing arts transform people’s lives. And because of this belief, I have pursued the arts, as a singer and art administrator. My mission is to not only express myself through music, but work behind-the-scenes to bring music and the arts to all people for the opportunity for transformation. Everything I have pursued, educationally and professionally, has led to this mission.

MUSIC & THE ARTS

I have had a love of music and the arts since a young age. In high school my own life was transformed through the power of music which got me through difficult times. Because of this passion and experience, I pursued my undergraduate degree in music, focused on vocal performance, and minored in history.

I became fascinated with the intricate details of composer’s lives; what influenced their music personally and culturally. Over time I came to realize that I not only enjoyed studying the history of all genres and styles of music, but also the history of all forms of artistic expression, especially in cultures.

I believe God is the ultimate artist. We are His art and an expression of His image. We are creative and artistic like our creator. We are relational beings. Through the arts we communicate to God and to each other. The arts are venues where we come face to face with ourselves, express our souls, and can experience transformation.

ART ADMINISTRATION

After graduating from college, I realized that I wanted to work in an artistic environment where I could help further the arts and bring about opportunity for transformation. I pursued my master of arts in art administration from the University of Michigan – Flint. I completed two internships, one with International Arts Movement (IAM) in New York City, founded by the contemporary artist, Makoto Fujimura; and the other with the Cleveland Museum of Art’s Department of Performing Arts that presents classical and world music, dance, and other contemporary performances.

I believe an art administrator’s mission is to fully understand and execute the business and administrative side of the arts so as to create an environment of open and nurtured conversation and authentic artistic expression which creates opportunity for personal transformation through the arts. I have continued to gain knowledge and experience through various educational and professional pursuits. I started my own publishing company after I wrote and recorded a song for a friend’s indie film. I produced two of my own vocal concerts, a local Shakespeare company’s first production, and have booked various musical artists to perform in my home and at the art organization I currently work at as an office manager. Two of the artists I booked I met through the Arts Midwest Conference. I recently completed the Certified Performing Arts Executive Program for Presenters, Agents, and Artists' Managers provided through NAPAMA (which I am a member) and the University of New Orleans.

I am someone who constantly wants to learn, reflect, and creatively implement what I take in and process personally and professionally. When I am moved and excited about something, I make it happen. I enjoy discovering music and performers, both timeless and new, and sharing what I find with those around me. This is why I want to be a music/performing arts presenter and singer. I am excited for what the future holds and am ready for new and creative ventures where I can create opportunity for transformation.

Signature 4.jpg

What are some of your favorite covers and arrangements of songs?

As a classically trained singer, I am no stranger to singing other people’s compositions. I enjoy researching the history and studying the performance of a musical work. Coming up with your own interpretation or arrangement of an original piece can be just as exhilarating as writing your own song.

Thanks to Sarah Brightman and other singers, I’ve enjoyed discovering beautiful songs and then going on a hunt for the originals. When discovering original compositions and there cover versions by other artist, you can discover some fun surprises. Sometimes, polar opposites!

For example,

Voyage, Voyage, originally by Desireless in 1986, and then you have Gregorian’s cover in 2001.

On the top of the old volcanos
Slipping of the wings under the carpets of the wind
Travel travel, eternally
Clouds in the marsh
The wind of Spain in rain of Equator
Travel travel, flight in the heights
Above the capitals
Fatal ideas
Look at the ocean

Travel travel
Further that night and the day
Travel
In an unbelievable space of the love
Travel travel
On holly water of an Indian river
Travel
And do never return

On Ganges or the Amazonas
At the whites, at the sikhs, at the yellows
Travel travel, in all the kingdom
On the dunes of the Sahara
Fiji islands in Fujihama
Travel travel, you’re not bounded
With above of the barbeles
Hearts bombard
Look at the ocean

travel , travel …
— Voyage, Voyage Lyrics

totally different feel, right!?

I believe talent goes farther than writing or performing music.  It also takes talent to arrange and produce music. As the above example demonstrates, one song can be arranged and produced in so many different ways, creating different feelings and sounds from one song. It can make or break a song too. Sometimes for a song’s true worth to emerge OR to have a different voice emerge from the wood work, a little tweaking or different stylistic arrangement needs to happen. What are some of your favorite originals and covers, and why? 

Peace,

Signature 3.jpg

Winter Light Concert Video Now Available

Hi there,

I am excited and humbled to share with you the video of my Winter Light Concert that happened this past January. 

Winter can be a beautiful, but a rough time of year for many of us. It ended up being that for my family. Five days before my concert my 90-year-old grandma passed away. As you can see, I went ahead with the concert, despite her passing, and staving a cold. But I did this concert because I wanted to present music that would bring some light to people’s dreary days. The songs I selected celebrate and meditate on the winter months along with their old and new traditions, and allow for us to take the time to pause and reflect as the snow falls, as we are curled up inside our homes, warm and cozy. May one or all of these songs bring a little light to your wintery days now and in the coming years. 

I want to thank so many people, who I could not have done this without them: 

Val Lemon, www.coolemonjazz.com,  for your friendship and support over the years. We finally get to perform together for a full concert!

Julie Meyer, amazing vocal teacher

 Natalie Lodico Bond: hwww.photolodico.com

Phil Walenga: www.philsimaging.com

Dan Tuma Media: www.dantumamedia.com

Creative 360 Family: www.becreative360.org

Midland Reformed Church: www.midlandreformed.org

Mike Mullis, Timbrel and Harp Productions

My parents for the food, love & support

Sarah Smith - my sanity! 

The rest of my family and friends! Thank you for your love and support and for being at my concert! 

Ludovico Einaudi in Concert

I had the honor and pleasure of seeing Ludovico Einaudi perform live this past October at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto. Ludovico is a minimalist pianist and contemporary classical composer whose music transports you to another world, and showers you with peace, strength, and rest.

I was inspired by Ludovico and the calm power of his music to bring us into his realm. Sitting front row, Ludovico came out and began to play immediately with five other musicians. There was no intermission and Ludovico had us captivated for two hours. In the middle of the concert he played the piano solo for about twenty minutes. Afterward, he turned and acknowledged our presence - all our faces beaming. Falling asleep at his concert, I think, would be a complement. The third half of the concert, after his piano solo, he and the band woke up our souls and led us to the conclusion. Ludovico and his fellow musicians bowed and applauded us back at the end.

Ludovico_Einaudi_ep.jpg

Ludovico, a short, youthful 61-year-old Italian man, wearing all black with colorful sneakers, played as one with his music. His expressions, the touch of the keys, were all done with intimacy and genuine artistic expression; holding his hands in a prayer after several songs completed, and raising his hand in the air and pointing to the heavens after the final encore piece.

He is a true, humble, musical genius – true to himself. May he continue to calm our hearts and souls with the notes he writes down.

K-Pop, BTS, Youth, & Hesse

BTS (Bulletproof Boy Scouts), also known as Bangtan Boys. Wow. Where do I begin? 

For the past five years I have been slowly perusing the Korean Wave (The Korean Wave is a neologism referring to the increase in global popularity of South Korean culture since the 1990s), especially the phenomenon of K-Pop. I would not say I am a fan of K-Pop in general, but I would definitely say I am now a fan of a handful of groups that stand out to me because of their talent in singing, rapping, composition and lyric writing, depth (shock!) and overall vibe.

For an industry that can seem shallow, flashy, and money grabbing, (sounds like any music industry, right?) BTS really stands out with their down-to-earth vibe, superb talent in dance, rap, and singing, their use of symbolism, metaphors, and themes within their music, and with all seven members contributing to composing, lyric writing, and producing their own music, their passion shines though. BTS, a K-Hip Hop (If you don’t like K-pop, check out the Korean Rap scene – it’s phenomenal.) group that debuted in 2013, consists of Jin, J-Hope, Suga, Rap Monster, Jimin, V, and Jungkook (Rap Monster and Suga are outstanding artists on their own). 

BTS has caught the eye of the world, with their album, The Most Beautiful Moment In Life, Part 2 charting at number one on the Billboard World Albums Chart for multiple weeks, making BTS the first K-Pop act to achieve that status.*1 The group’s outstanding performances won them the Best World Performer award in the 2015 Mnet Asian Music Awards.

What I love about BTS, and what really stood out to me as I listened to their music, was their honesty and ability to tackle serious, cultural issues within their country. Jeff Benjamin from Fuse labeled BTS as the "K-pop's Social Conscience" stating that BTS found "a way to speak honestly about topics they deem important, even in a conservative society."*2 Jeff goes on to write,

On Pt. 2, BTS expresses all the different emotions their young fanbase is experiencing; loneliness is not a sexy topic that most pop acts can sing about in a convincing way, but it’s a feeling that can be inescapable in childhood, and BTS successfully captures it with a fantastical metaphor. The band has said that their albums and EPs look to express different points of youth, and Pt. 2 encompasses the moment that a young adult is beginning to think about the world in more complex ways than “I love you”/“I hate you”—something their fanbase will soon experience, too. In past releases, BTS has tackled school bullying, the pursuit of happiness and rejecting society ideals in its lyrics…BTS isn’t the first Korean act to speak about substantial topics, but it is one of the acts doing it in a clever, shrewd way—and it’s only getting more popular by doing so.
— Jeff Benjamin, Fuse

This is very evident in their song Spine Breaker, N.Oand one of my favorite metaphoric songs, Silver Spoon.

Storks (황새;”hwangsae”) are large birds with long legs, while parrotbills (뱁새; “baepsae”) are among the tiniest birds. A parrotbill cannot walk like a stork no matter how hard it tries, because it was born with a smaller body. Hence, the proverb “a parrotbill that tries to chase a stork will break its own legs” means that one should live within one’s means.
In this song, the storks represent those born with an economic advantage, while parrotbills represent those who were not. Just like a parrotbill cannot overcome the physical advantage of a stork, the common people cannot compete with the upper class. The unequal advantage that the rich receive from their parents, such as inheritance, better education, and job connections, has led to social immobility so great that it is as if the people were born as different species.
Such problems have led to a generation (N포세대 / N-po generation) that has lost hope and “given up” dating, marriage, and childbirth, due to financial difficulties arising from stagnant wages and unemployment. The repetition of the word “노력” (effort), or, as I have translated it, “try harder,” refers to some (mostly elders and the people in power) who put the blame for those problems on the youth, saying they do not work hard enough.
— yhdt774, https://youtu.be/978LmAvwEm0

Sound familiar? ;) Another favorite song and live performance is Let Me Know, which Suga produced and composed with Rap Monster and J-Hope. 

What blows my mind further, is just this week BTS started to release a series of short films titled WINGS, with #1 BEGIN, #2 LIE, #3 STIGMA, #4 FIRST LOVE, and just today, #5 REFLECTION, with more on the way. The BTS fandom (known as ARMY) has been going crazy, posting theory videos about what the short films mean and how they are all connected. Just from the first five films, fans are seeing a theme in their lyrics and music videos that seems to go all the way back to the beginning of BTS’s debute in 2013! Fans have discovered the theme comes from German novelist Hermann Karl Hesse’s*3 novel, Demian:The Story of Emil Sinclair’s Youth*4 (This makes sense).

Emil Sinclair is a young boy raised in a middle class home, amidst what is described as a Scheinwelt, a play on words that means “world of light” as well as “world of illusion”. Emil’s entire existence can be summarized as a struggle between two worlds: the show world of illusion (related to the Hindu concept of maya) and the real world, the world of spiritual truth. In the course of the novel, accompanied and prompted by his mysterious classmate ‘Max Demian’, he detaches from and revolts against the superficial ideals of the world of appearances and eventually awakens into a realization of self.
— thanks wikipedia.org

Whew. What a fascinating and heavy concept for a K-Hip Hop group to produce musically and visually. I am looking forward to this theme evolving more and seeing all the little connections come in place musically and visually.

This is just the tip of the BTS iceberg, but I hope my little praise essay encourages you to check them out. Now I’ll leave the last word to Jeff Benjamin:

In a world of social media and overexposure, everyone has a platform to speak as loudly as they want and potentially reach millions. BTS is taking that platform and talking about things that are not only brave to tackle in modern music, but especially in its traditional community. This is the type of group that will not only boast a more passionate fan base for the way they made them feel from a certain hit single, but also one that can help push a society forward while they’re at it.
— Jeff Benjamin, Fuse
Signature 5.jpg
*1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermann_Hesse, *2 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demian, *3 http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/k-town/6835246/bts-most-beautiful-moment-in-life-pt-2-returns-no-1-world-albums, *4 http://www.fuse.tv/2015/12/bts-kpops-social-conscience