MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only LOVE can do that.
CICELY TYSON Challenges make you discover things about yourself that you never really knew.
LANGSTON HUGHES I swear to the Lord, I still can’t see, why Democracy means, everybody but me.
MAYA ANGELOU One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We cant be kind, true, merciful, generous or honest.
Hey everyone. Its been a while so I thought I would spend some time here. I am so happy with those of you following my personal posts… it just feels more… intimate than other social networks alone. I am hopeful that folks who find me from places like FB, twitter or instagram take a minute to sign up here as well. Thank you in advance
Welcome to November, which to me is the major signpost that kicks off theHoliday Seasonall the way through to the New Year (or would that beHalloween? Hmm).
The crisp air.… the fall leaves…. the food…. the decorations…. all leave most of us feeling pretty good about life. It seems that people are friendlier this time of year.
This is a perfect season for cruising the San Francisco Bay as well as up and down the California Coast. But don’t think its all for pleasure. We actually have set the boat up so that we can record music…. and during our trips I take time out to be hard at work creating. The inspiration you get while cruising is extraordinary.
I have had the good fortune to have my music appear in an upcoming TV episode and a feature film so I’m feeling pumped…. More on that later….
I also had the pleasure of meeting up again with Olympic Silver Medalist Nelson Vails at the premiere of his documentary. I met him a few years ago at a Bicycle Festival. It turns out he knew some of my family and actually stayed with my cousin; pro biker turned pro race car driver Robb Holland for about a year… (small world).
I really enjoyed creating this song which I hope successfully expresses the sentiment that lasting love grows by steps…. little steps… which bring you closer and closer. A nice metaphor for love and life in general.
Since so many of you have been requesting it over the years……
I am finally releasing a Christmas Song!
It will be out in a week or two. The first person to guess which song I decided to do will be e-mailed an mp3 of it for free. I’m keeping it a secret for now and will make a separate post when it is available. (and will send the free mp3 at that time)
In order to organize the web better we closed down one of our three youtube pages so now there are only two official pages where we upload material (and where I reply directly to fans) etc…
I also opened an instagram account (gregoryabbottmusic). Not much on there yet but for those of you who use it- keep checking back.
Happy Thanksgiving or as my kids used to say “Happy Turkey Day !”
As I eat more than I should on that day-(and I will 🙂 ); I try to remember that Thanksgiving is not just about food. Although it’s some of the best food of the year (in my opinion); to me it is mostly about the spiritual expression of gratitude…. for those you love…. what you have…. and where life has taken you up to this point. If it is possible to share this sentiment with good friends as well, all the better.
I have been blessed in my life. Thanksgiving however makes me realize that not everyone is in a good place. My mother taught my brother and I to do a random act of kindness; especially during this season (I encourage you to do the same if you’re so inclined). This is a tradition my family has continued over the years. Anything would do…. donating food, time etc…. just something to keep you mindful. As an example; one year as my family was going through the toll booth into the city; we decided to pay the toll for the next four people behind us. What smiles and waves we got!
Someone once did that for me and I was inspired to do it for someone else…. and that’s the whole point…. to pay it forward…. or in this case pay it backward lol!
I’d also like to take a minute to speak about the Native peoples negative stereotypes during this season. I have native Caribbean blood and I am sensitive to the mis-information of native peoples role in history. I really love Thanksgiving- but I do not love the harmful images we perpetuate via movies and TV etc… each and every year. They are inaccurate, demeaning and harmful to young minds both Indian and non Indian. At this point in our history I think we need Thanksgiving to be placed in a more spiritual place as I stated earlier. The Indians did the pilgrims a favor and helped them to survive. I think the best way to repay that gratitude is to show them the respect they deserve…… Okay I’m done.
Blessing to you all. I thank you for your friendship.
Enjoy the season and I will be back soon with a post of the Christmas Song.
Until then… here’s my quote:
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.
It turns what we have into enough, and more.
It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.
It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.
As always I am musically yours, Gregory
P.S. If you missed Harry Belafonte’s powerful speech on race and social injusticeand want to see it; you can catch it here.