so i'm on the plane right now and have no internet (obviously-- even though some flights have wi-fi now) therefore im going to copy and paste this blog.
so my trip back home this weekend was awesome once again. i flew in on friday and justin and dez (committee for the event Raise the Roof II) picked me up in an SUV with 2 guys by the name of Jeremy (aka passion) and Gabe Bondoc. haha. i was excited to have another show with them, and i was mostly looking forward to meeting the L to their GLP, Leejay . we got to the college (CalState Long Beach) and went into the green room, put our stuff down only to pick it back up when Justin announced we had dressing rooms. the dressing room that we had was pretty big and had mirrors and lights and a pretty big space to just chill. we chilled for a little, then we went to a mall close by to eat, and met up with Scott Yoshimoto there.
all my friends came through and we got them in with VIP passes, and we all chilled backstage till the show started. it was pretty crazy before the show, lots of kids running around since they were part of dance crews and things, and people interviewing people and it was pretty much chaos. right before the show started i was practicing on jeremy's keyboard and decided i wanted to do a Disney Medley for the show for fun. leejay helped me pick some songs and i created a quick medley to perform as the opener for my set.
i went on and i played the 'prologue' to Beauty and the Beast' and had Leejay come on stage to be that mysterious voice in the beginning of the movie, "Once upon a time, there was a beast.." etc etc. i also dedicated "Showstopper" to my friend Ramiele Malubay who i recognized as someone who has successfully represented us Filipino-Americans on national TV =] i played MidKnight during my set explaining the campaign i was starting to get it on the third Batman movie. i got an overwhelming positive response to that song, with guys from the fraternity that was hosting the event backstage telling me they respected my songwriting. i was humbled.
you can search for my set on youtube! just search raise the roof aj rafael etc keywords like that. GLP was up and i sat in the audience with a few of my friends. gabe leejay and passion did their own songs, and then a medley of old school 90's and some new stuff too. it was pretty dope and inspiring as always.
after the show was super crazy, almost as crazy as Feel The Beat last weekend. we were a little late coming down and i heard half the crowd had left, but it was chaos nonetheless. me gabe and passion were behind the counter that my boys set up for all of us to sell and sign cd's and shirts, or whatever else they were handing us to sign. i sold out of all my regular t-shirts-- i didn't expect that to happen. im glad you guys like the shirts, even if ya'll didn't end up getting the size you wanted. i can't thank you enough for the support and the love. you don't know how much it means to me. if God told me that this was the end of my career for some odd reason, i would be totally happy with what i have achieved presently. i can't really ask for more, inspiring people to keep music in their lives is enough to back up my meaning of "success", although i would love to share my music with as many people possible through however i can reach them-- TV, radio, iTunes, music videos, record deal... =]
it's currently 11:19 PM EST on this place and my heart and mind is still in California, as it always is. it's been hard living in 2 cities at once. i have only written 2 songs out in Boston, and have written 3 back home ever since i moved out here. i need inspiration. lately my weekends back home have been girl drama, shows, friends, lack of sleep, playing ps3, monster energy shooters, and playing at church. i need to start getting back into the songwriting mindset.
sorry for this long blog, just felt like passing the time on this 4 hour and 45 minute plane ride. i'm watching HSM3, AGAIN, (vanessa is just ridiculously attractive), and am gaining ideas for duets that i would like to start writing. i'll be collaborating with other musicians a lot more, and i can't wait for you all to hear what comes out of it.
my band, AJ Rafael and the ... (yet to be named) is currently practicing for 3 shows we have in a couple of weeks. march 26th and 27th at Florida State University and the 28th in New York at Martin Luther King HS. we are doing great, and everybody is just really excited to be in the band. it's really awesome to have musician friends who are on the same page as you musically, and are just looking to play and have a good time.