Heavy Metal and Doulas

The work week of a certain violinist began and ended at polar extremes!

Monday:  6 hour studio recording session with my quartet for the heavy metal band Alesana’s forthcoming release. . . later that evening a meeting with a really cool bride about her upcoming August wedding for which I’ll be arranging some Keane and Adelle tunes for string quartet.

Friday:  Jazz violin and vocals with guitar and bass by Nate Macy & Nolan Staples for the Mama Baby Haiti charity event aboard the Portland Spirit:  a room filled with midwives, doulas and those who love them gathered together to support the efforts to provide birthing services and pediatric care to mothers and children in Haiti.

For myself and many of my friends who make music for a living, there is rarely a “normal” week… and if there is, we often find ourselves wondering if we’re doing something wrong!  In all of the hubbub of going and coming, I’m trying to learn to just take each moment as it comes and invest fully–even if tomorrow may find me playing a totally different style in a different place with different shoes!

Portland Spirit Benefit Cruise For MamaBaby Haiti


WHEN:  Friday, May 13 6:45-9:30 p.m.

Portland Spirit’s Willamette Star

WHAT:  musical entertainment, wine, chocolate, hors d’oeuvres, silent auction and beautiful cityscape views aboard the vessel!

HOW:  $100/person (Must be 21 years of age.)
Purchase Tickets! 

I don’t put too much on my blog about my personal life but this event on May 13th really means a lot to me.  Almost 2 years ago, I gave birth to a baby girl.  After reading Ina Mae’s Guide to Childbirth and watching the documentary the Business of Being Born, I was hell bent on having a natural birth—a water birth in fact at OHSU!  I did everything that I could to have a healthy pregnancy:  organic foods, exercise, cutting down on stress…I was surrounded by supportive friends and family.  Then Baby V was late. Very. Very. Late.  2 Weeks and still nothing!

To make a long story short, I ended up having an induced labor that included 56 hours of labor before I finally ended up having a C-section after baby V’s heart rate fell and her position was not changing. She…and possibly I would have died had we not had the excellent care of the competent and compassionate midwives and doctors at OHSU.  (Then WHO would have played violin for your wedding I ask! (:  )

When I think about mommies to be across the globe who don’t have that chance just because of where they were born, it leaves me breathless. Why me? Why do I get the chance to enjoy this life with my beautiful baby who is fast becoming a little girl when my sisters in Haiti do not?

I saw Bill Gates interviewed on Charlie Rose recently.  Here is a link to the transcript–The talk is really worth exploring. I know I really shouldn’t write this on a wedding music blog but I honestly think some people don’t value life in 3rd world countries because they think that the population is booming anyway…they think “Oh well, the women will just have more babies.” But as Bill Gates pointed out in this interview, the reason that these families have so many kids is in large part because they don’t think that all of them will survive. How tragic that this would be a reality of life! How amazing that we don’t have to think that way here in the states.

I believe with all my heart that every life is precious and I am ecstatic that MamaBaby Haiti is helping make a profound difference in the lives of individual women and children. Who knows what ramifications saving the lives and improving the quality of health for women and children in Haiti will have for our world. Maybe they are saving the life of the next Mother Theresa or Albert Einstein.

SO… please consider dressing up in your fancy duds and enjoying a wonderful evening on the Portland Spirit. I will be playing jazz violin and fiddle along with Nate Macy on guitar and Nolan Staples on upright bass. We sincerely hope you can join us!

MamaBaby Haiti is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and well being of mothers and babies.  Their mission is to lower the maternal, fetal, and neonatal mortality rate in Haiti. MamaBaby Haiti is formed by a group of midwives and naturopathic doctors who serve women and families out of their birthing center and clinic in Haiti. They provide free prenatal, birth, postpartum, and pediatric care, in addition to education and other life saving services.