Thursday, February 5, 2009


kicks in after only so much. it's hard to take in all this rejection. i mean, last semester i got called back to the biggest shows at berklee for vocalists, Singer's Showcase and Singer's Night... and didn't make the shows, but i was like its ok this is my first semester theres always next.

this semester i got called back again to both, and at the showcase callbacks i was like ok if i dont make it, its ok theres always singers night. and my accompanist for the showcase auditions, enrico, told me that showcase is pretty big, and i have a great chance to make it into singers night playing "little piece of home".

so i did it, and the 4 judges who were in there said they loved it. the main woman in charge was like "do you have that song recorded? we need to get you in the studio here and put some strings or somethin on that" and i was like havin a good vibe like yeah for sure im down! i'll see ya'll later!

i was feelin really good, went out to dinner with my friend loren who also got a callback (and later made the show) and i was havin a feeling about this callback. and now i didnt wanna get my hopes up too much, but there was definitely somethin in the back of my head that was like "aj, this is your time."

i checked the official LIST of the people who made it on the 3rd floor of the 1140 building with my friend Luis who had made it already. i wasn't on there. i looked at him and said 'represent for us cats who didnt make it, do ur thing bro' and went back downstairs.

now i know having a positive attitude about all this stuff is whats supposed to happen... but sometimes i can only handle so much... i mean i'm ALWAYS getting called back and i know ur probably thinking "at least you got a callback"... but damn its like, why do they keep calling me back and wasting my time when they say that it was really great and awesome but dont end up choosing me for some other factor.. like they already knew that they weren't putting me in the show... like 'hey maybe this kids got somethin! lets give him a callback.... *2 days later at callbacks*.. oh never mind'.

ok so maybe im just angry, but i came to BERKLEE in BOSTON to SHINE and STAND OUT because this was a place that didn't know my music... a place where i was not known at all and a place where i just was willing to start over and just spread my music and my name...

if berklee's not giving me a chance to shine, then damn i just need to move on... and make music for the WORLD instead of worrying about some show that doesn't even mean anything to the rest of the world...

california is lookin' like a really good place to be right now. i feel like im suffocating in this freezing, cold-ass weather just to be turned away by people who can't see the music in my eyes and in my performance... i just wanna make it already.

i will make it. i promise you...

a song that helps bring me up when i'm feelin down.




Klaudine Nicole. said...

if it makes you feel any better, all your youtube fans, and blogtv friends are there to support you.
it doesn't really do much, but you know we're here.
we have faith in you and your music.
we know that you're good, and you got talent. maybe they didn't put you through the showcases because there will be a better one in the future.

hold on there tight, you'll make it through aj : ) just don't lose hope. and keep trying. they'll notice you sooon ;)

even if rejection puts you down, have faith in yourself more than your family, friends and fans do.

so gooodluck !
i do hope you feel better !

Anonymous said...


that was really heartfelt and i know what you mean. i've gone through a similar situation in which i would always be "good" but not "good enough." and as much as people say "it's alright, there's always other things..." it still hurts because you get so close only to get shot down. :/

to quote one of my favorite musicians:
"and i know it's tough right now, but you'll get it together..."

however, you should know that you have millions of people here in cali (and all over the world, really) that love you and your music. we look forward to watching your videos on youtube, posting your songs on our myspaces, and wait hours long in the waiting room on blogtv just to hear YOU and get close to YOU because of how TALENTED you are.

WE see the music in you and we love it. i just KNOW that you're going to make it even bigger someday. you're already #1 in cali; next accomplishment: #1 on all the charts.

just know that we got your back. whether or not you think berklee is the route to go for you, we got 'chu. you have our support, belief, and love.

i hope things start to look up. [: and i know i wrote a friggin' novel on here, but i mean ALL of it.

lots of love and support all the way from san diego, ca!
-your super permaOP <3

Katrine said...

you've got a whole bunch of people that believe in you and really appreciate your talent..
and i'll just say one more thing:
it's the people that fight for what they want who gets the most out of it in the end.. =)
love from Norway ;)
hang in there!

Beckett said...

It'll be okay AJ. I absolutely love you and your music. I have the same troubles with my writing. When people tell you its good... then at school is sub par at best. You're just going through a rough spot... it'll get better

Anonymous said...

Oh AJ... i know how it feels to give it all only to be shot down again and again even if you try your best. But if it makes you feel better, you've really inspired me with your songs and one day you WILL make it. no doubt about it. as for the cold, i know you're not used to it, but make sure you wear a scarf and keep a hot drink in your hands. that should help =) i'll be seeing you on march 7th =)

Amilia said...


You'd get through it, I'm sure of that !

Biggest fan, haha.


abbyybba said...

Hey AJ.

I'm sorry to hear about what just happened.

I don't think anyone would ever want to go through rejections like this in their lives, but it happens. I know this was a heartbreak, and I can totally see it if I were to put myself in your situation. It hurts to know your own talent was shut out after those callbacks. But you know what, you got plenty of opportunities that can be bigger than this. I know this may not help much, but trust me, you have so much potential that Berklee needs to open it's eyes more and realize you have a unique style you want to bring. I guess for someone like you to be in a different place like where you are, it takes a while to get your talent to shine. But I know that sooner enough, it'll happen. Don't let this rejection get to the best of you, 'cause I know you're stronger than that. It's good that you let your anger out! Definitely helps ease things a little. Right now, it's not easy...and heck, it may get a little tougher than this, but you got the love and support from your family and friends, and especially your fans that are always behind you. Best believe that. So don't give up, and I mean ever. There's so much out there to do, just takes time do it all.

You'll do just fine, AJ.


Bobbygrunge said...

AJ you are so talented and so awesome
It's just a matter of time for your success..

Can't wait for you to be signed..

fzlyn said...

hey aj..

dont get too frustated.
hang in there alright.

youre really good =)
everybody's sure of it.

dont let the faith runnin.

take care and enjoy every moment of life. have fans in Singapore(haha do you even knw where that is?) that definitely includes me.

thanks for makin an impact on me..
God knows what..

haha keep us updated abt ur life alright.


take care again./

musicfreek said...

I'm not sure what to say to make you feel any better.
all i know is that your fans out there KNOW that you're beyond awesome. ;D
we just hope that it'll get into your head sooner or later so that it'll drown all these horrible feelings you're having. (:

just remember,God won't put you in places or let you tackle things you can't handle. He knows your limits and also that you are strong enough to push on. :D so,don't let this put you down but instead let it drive you to do better and prove these people wrong. ;D

and warm hugs from Malaysia!

DJ said...

Patience is a virtue.

Anonymous said...

Aww good things will come for you they will cuz your amazing and deserve this more than anybody else! Seriously you haven't got 4,000,000+ plays on myspace for nuthin. Don't eva give up cuz u will make it one day!

jana marie said...

you say that you want to shine and stand out, but you know what? you already shine in the eyes of the people who support your music! after all you are number one on myspace right?.

i'm sorry you didn't get into them singer nights, but theres gonna be more to come =]. i believe in your music and i believe in you. to be honest it's whats getting me through the day at the moment. but just remember things will get better, you jus gotta be patient. it will happen soon enough!and i hope things get better for you!


cheryl said...

AJ, I just want to let you know that you already shine, just by being you. I know it's a little frustrating coming so close and not making it. But you gotta keep trying, because determination is what will get you what you want.

You have tons of people ALL OVER THE WORLD supporting you. I want you to remember that. We love you no matter what. You're gonna make it soon AJ, I just know it.

Music IS love, & we love YOU.

xxkoreangurlxx said...

im sorry u didnt make the shows AJ..u really deserved it..
but always remember u have soo many ppl behind u and ur music and that will support u in anythin that u do..
ur gonna make it one day AJ i kno you will..u got the talent and most importantly the heart to go where ever u wanna go and do whatever u wanna do...
i kno that one day ill see AJ Rafael's music video playin on MTV and bein the hottest vid ever! ^_^
i hope u feel better soon AJ..
always believe in urself and always look forward..when oppurtunity leaves u theres always another waitin for u..
good luck AJ!
hope u feel better soon!


c(H)ris. said...

don't fret man. your time will come. with talent like that which you possess it can't possibly not come.

this quote helps me get through bad days...maybe it'll help you.

"today happened like it did, so tomrorow can happen like it should".....

HeatBlank said...

I strongly believe that everything happens for a reason.
Maybe you’re supposed to just get stronger from this and move on.
Rejection is something that happens a lot in life. But the people that work the hardest are the people who get the most reward and end up the happiest.
I really don’t know what I can say to make you feel better but you will always have your fans behind you.
And you’re getting more and more fans in different places that love you more and more everyday.
I mean people go to blogtv two hours early just to be in the main room and watch you and hope that you will see them and say hi or whatever (I’m one of those people haha)
And you get a lot of fans on youtube. I actually found out who you are by youtube. I was listening to lucky by Jason maraz and saw your cover of it in the related thing and then became a fan.
I live in Ohio and I hate the cold. It probably colder there though which I couldn’t like survive. Haha
But yea don’t worry because you’re young so you have a lot of time to get to the top like your fans know you will.


jourdanjustine said...

WOW, AJ. Your video was sooo touching it brought me to tears. I love that song, and you really put the emotion and feeling into the song. Like I can feel what you're going through...its tough for all of us. You'll get your big break soon, you'd better believe it! Just keep posting videos, writing songs, networking, and PRAYING - and before you know it, something great is going to happen =)

xoxo <3 lets hang soon!

Anonymous said...

Hey Aj. I just discovered you on youtube and I think you are wonderful! I'm also a singer/songwriter. Although, you are WAY more advanced :). I play the guitar and piano and I definitely can appreciate your hard work and your talent. I know your frustration... Sometimes you're just sick of people saying "You're great, you're wonderful, you're gonna make it!!!" Then you're like "Well that's great but when is it gonna happen!!!" It's ok to be frustrated sometimes... but just remember... you are making a difference in someone's life every minute of everyday; whether that be inspiration for singing, playing, or just appreciating the gift of music. So please keep doing what you're doing cause you ARE wonderful! And P.S..... I'm sure you do miss California being around that Boston weather! And college is also rough in general. I'm just now, for the first time, trying to figure out my future. But, I've come to the conclusion that you should always stick with your passion, which for me is photography and music. You know your passion :)

"Smile though your heart is aching
Smile even though it's breaking
If there are clouds in the sky you'll get by
If you smile through your fear and sorrow
Smile and maybe tomorrow
Youll see the sun come shining through for you..." So just smile :)

Anonymous said...

And one more thing... God's got your back :)

funsized! said...

it's okay AJ. :) remember, it's not the end of the world. no one's perfect, and our imperfections make us human. there's a lot of people around the world aspiring to stand out like you, and i doubt they've came as far as you've gone. you're definitely not alone when it comes to rejection. :] keep your chin up, i know i will definitely see you standing on the world lookin strong. :] good luck to the future and just know there are millions of people supporting you! :D never give up, you inspire me! <3

Anonymous said...

hey dude, you're right i never knew who you were until you came here. Now I listen to your cd time to time, in my car and ipod or wherever. if that makes any difference so

"For every minute you are angry, you lose sixty seconds of HAPPINESS"

so smile and keep on playing

Anonymous said...

Best of luck. Don't give up.

Kosheeya ♥ said...

hello. i'm from singapore. is there anyway i can get the showstopper in mp3 file format? :D you're awesome (: thanks!

Kosheeya ♥ said...

hello. i'm from singapore. is there anyway i can get the showstopper in mp3 file format? :D you're awesome (: thanks!

sophianerarie said...

hey AJ
i'm so sorry your feeling down so much! I can totally understand (Ithink) just feel the love everyone is willing to give you, all of your fans! It's okay to be angry! when you feel upset you just need to be angry, so go ahead! know that i'll always support you!!!

Seph said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Seph said...

"if berklee isn't giving me a chance to shine maybe i should move on"

ok i love u but that sentence was EXTREMELY arrogant. your great but your a FRESHMAN, you've got alot to learn AND a couple THOUSAND other students just as good and i dont doubt some alot better. I'm sure they called back alot, and as someone who is in theatre let me just say that i get call backs ALL the time, i dont make it ALL the time, and you know what i dont get angry i dont see it as a waste of my time. its flattering to get a call back, if you dont make it then you weren't wat they were looking for. Your new, you have 4 years to make it. relax take it easy, dont get cocky because u'll fall flat.

I love your music think of this as tough love..

we all get upset but you need to look at things in prospective. as to them telling you its great, i dont doubt it! almost everyone that got called back is probably great, i'd find the judges afterward and say hey you said i was great but i didn't make it, what do i need to improve on etc. you'll make a good impression on them and you'll learn alot.

Your going to get there aj, no one doubts it. You also dont want to get there pre-maturely, you need to soak up as much experience, (both rejection and positive feedback) and just plain old musical knowledge. you made it to BERKLEE in boston i mean jeez that alone says how good u are.

Take a deep breath, keep warm, dont let this get you down.

-A fan who cares and loves your music.

sincerely, j. said...

keep your head up high, aj. you are honestly one of my biggest inspirations. your music makes me happy no matter what mood i'm in. you have sooo much fans from all around the world that support you & care for you so much. & this is comin' from the heart. you WILL make it big. i have faith in you.

i hope you feel better & good luck on tha future. take care!

sincerely, j!<3

Amy said...

AJ! i'm really sorry to hear that you didn't make it, but don't let it get to you too much! you have so much time to get even better than you already are, and hopefully the judges will see your talent soon!

and even if they don't, the showcase and singer's night isn't everything. you have hundreds of fans who love and support you! just think of all the shows you played at and how many people were cheering you on and supporting your music!

i know things are kinda sucky right now, but they can only get better right? :)

keep trying and just remember that you ARE very talented no matter what anyone says!

best of luck!

kuoool said...

Ahww I'm so sorry you didn't make it, and I totally understand why you feel so frustrated about it. I mean, I really did think you'd have the potential to make it! It's great that the judges loved your song, but at the same time it's lame they said that stuff cause it only gets your hopes up. But just to let you know, I absolutely LOVE Little Piece of Home, it's my second favorite original of yours. My absolute favorite is "My Soldier".

So remember!
"Don't you worry about the obstacles to your happiness. If you let them get to you, you'll end up just like the rest. I know you're better than the people who get in the way. Just remember... You are strong, strong as a soldier."

And just to let you know, you're fans aren't only in CA :) Me and my closest friends love your music, and we're in WA. One of the things I want to make sure I do in my life is to see you perform live. It depresses me so much that you're going to perform February 20 right next to the city where I used to live! (I used to live in Cypress).

TN said...

Don't worry man, your a pretty cool dude. It just sucks to get soo close but fall short. It happens all the time to me so I feel your pain, but your way better than me so I can't say I REALLY know how you feel. You deserve a spot and those judges need to clean their ears out and take a listen to some real singing. (:

You got much love and support from your fans, friends, family & god. Do us Fans/Aspiringmusicians/whoeverelse proud.
SanDiegoLovesAJRafael, come stay awhile again so we can hang (:

ponoono said...

A lot of it IS the weather even if you do not think so, frosh from HI are usually begging to transfer to CA at this point.

Try to get a frame of reference on the issue. What percentage of freshmen do succeed on a callback ?

You have a lot of raw talent and already a fan base! Be honest with yourself. Is your voice as developed as you want it to be? Do you have the power you want in your voice yet ? Are you satisfied?

I have lived here my whole life and winter here is dark to me too. Berklee will help you develop your gift, just keep walking forward.

genesis gregorio said...


i know you can make it! =]

Kathleen said...

hang in there, AJ.
i admire your passion, and i just hope those people can see that. if they dont see how many fans you have; how many people look up to you; how many people listen to your music to uplift our spirits, they will come to a realization. never feel defeated.

"you are strong, strong as a soldier
i know you'll get through anything" :)

♥ kathleen tung

Anonymous said...

hey don't feel down .. just remember things happen for a reason and you got this. you have so many people who believe in you and support you .. im sure you'll definitely make it big and besides it seems to me that you already are =)

here in winnipeg, we're pretty much into the hip hop seen and there's so much of us that want to get big with music but nobody really knows wut we're capable of.

all i gotta say is keep doing wut you do cuz you are just straight up dope! you live you learn right? just keep your head up and be strong.

Genie said...

Aw, Aj don't let that get you down. I'm sure you're doing waayy better than some other musicians out there, and you still have your entire life ahead of you =)

raxile said...

" i just wanna make it already.

i will make it. i promise you..."

u have made it whether you think or not. My life is so horrible and when im down and hurting i turn to your music...your words..and i know everything...will be fine. The video posted in this blog you can hear the connection..the passion. Bro wake up!!!!! You have the love and passion within. You have found that place.

I know some say making it is having an album..recording contract...but you know music..u play for the gift..the love.

Continue...dont let the rejections turn u away. God will make them your feedings. You can survive with Him. Bless you!

Anonymous said...

dont give up. you are an awesome artist. you have youtube fans, friends, and family who support you all the way. the weather in bostons not so great but its getting warmer. i know its not really helping. i live here too ]= in life theres ups and downs but i know you can make the best of it. just hold on and dont give up. Youll get noticed soon. i have a've inspired me to actually pick up a guitar and try to play, even though its not going so well im trying. thats what counts.. your awesome. ily

your biggest fan.
cindy [=

Anonymous said...

"You are strong, strong as a soldier. I know you'll get through anything."


his love<3 said...

i just want to tell you not to let those stupid judge people bring you down. you are really amazing and almost everyone i know is in love with your music. just keep your head up and always look at the positive sidee of life. and I know that you'll make it for sure (:
and i like in anaheim, so im really excited to see you at FEEL THE BEAT! so many people are going to be attending it's freakinggg insaneee. i'm so phsyched to see you there (:

a bug fan, Emma (: