Thursday, December 3, 2009

Susan's dream...

This is a video tribute I created for Susan. You might also want to check my today's post about Susan on my blog, Thinking About It!

If you want a larger high resolution version of it, you can see it here. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Imagine that...

My macho logger tree farmer husband is a whiz at the stock market, politics, world news and the state of the union. However, he doesn't read my blogs and he has no idea who's who in music. Yesterday, I had Susan's album playing as I worked about the house and he worked at his desk. After a while, he looked up from his work and smiled.

"Who IS that?" he asked. "I like it. A lot."

Imagine that...

Thanks, Susan.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Making music history...

I can't imagine the profound excitement Susan Boyle must be feeling now. Her dream has, indeed, come true...resoundingly true. The following article is from Susan's official website.

Susan Boyle Makes Music History as the Fastest Selling Worldwide Female Debut Ever!

As Susan Boyle’s album, ‘I Dreamed A Dream,’ confirms its place at the top of the UK, Australian and Irish charts today and continues to race to #1 in the US, Canada, New Zealand and hits #1 iTunes status in France, Spain, Switzerland, Ireland and Japan, the message across the world is clear - Susan Boyle has validated her place among music giants.

In Britain, Susan Boyle’s debut album was confirmed as the fastest selling UK debut album of all time selling 411,820 copies beating the previous fastest selling debut of all time, Arctic Monkeys in its first three days. I Dreamed a Dream also outsold the rest of the top 5 albums combined.

In America, Susan is already outselling young mega-sellers Rihanna, Lady Gaga and 50 Cent with a projected first week sales figures of around 1 million (American chart announced next week), defying them all with an expected number 1 position. In doing so she is set to break Eminem’s previous record for highest first week (US) sales this year. Susan has broken retail records around the world including selling 80,OOO copies in four short sales windows on QVC and becoming the biggest pre-ordered album in the history of Amazon.

As I Dreamed A Dream finds its way into over 2 million homes across the planet in 7 short days, it is time to crown a new worldwide musical phenomenon.

A delighted Susan Boyle said, “It’s fantastic.”

Simon Cowell congratulated Susan yesterday saying, “I’m incredibly proud of Susan and delighted for her. This success couldn’t have happened to a more deserving person. Susan Boyle quite simply has broken the rules, her story is like a Hollywood movie but this time it’s real life and a really talented, nice lady who has won.”

HMV’s Gennaro Castaldo says: “People of all ages seem to be buying it, and it’s clearly going to be one the must-have gift items this Christmas. Susan’s accomplished performance on The X-Factor has given the album a massive, timely boost. It now has the momentum to challenge for the Christmas No.1”

The Official Charts Company’s MD, Martin Talbot, adds: “Susan Boyle’s achievement is quite phenomenal. After all of the excitement surrounding her appearance on Britain’s Got Talent, everyone expected her to make a big impact when she released her first music – but to arrive with such a bang is exceptional.”

The statistics:

-Fastest Selling Global Female Debut Album
-Number 1 album in UK, making it the ”Fastest Selling Debut Album in UK Chart History” - beating previous fastest selling debut of all time, Arctic Monkeys, in first three days. Its also the highest one week sale for a female act in chart history.
-Projected 1 Album in US, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland, Australia and many European countries
-Most pre-ordered album in Amazon history
-#1 iTunes Japan, Canada, France, Spain, Switzerland
-First album of the month in the Italian #1 account by a non-Italian artist ever

‘I Dreamed A Dream’ is released in the UK by SYCO Music and is available everywhere.

Monday, November 23, 2009

It's here at last!

Susan's debut album, I Dreamed A Dream, was officially released TODAY!

Although I have pre-ordered several albums, I have a confession: I couldn't wait for the postman! So, I purchased a downloaded copy from Amazon and I began to listen. Song after song after song...I was amazed. What a beautiful voice...beyond the voice though is the feeling and emotion she puts into each song.

I can't decide which is my favorite...maybe Up To The Mountain...but I love them all. With this debut album, Susan has truly proven she can sing it ALL. I loved the fact there's a little bit of blues here...of course, I am a Memphis girl at heart.

Susan performed on the Today show this morning...evidently, the first entertainer EVER to be given a full 30 minute concert!
Click here for the Today website and links to the songs she performed so beautifully on the program this morning.

As I'm typing this, the song Who I Was Born To Be is playing on my desktop speakers. What an astonishing gift Susan has been given and I am thankful she is sharing it with the rest of us...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Just five little days...

On November 24, 2009, Susan Boyle's debut album will be released. If you haven't preordered it, you can (hopefully) get to your local music shop early enough to buy a copy. I wouldn't wait too long! Personally, I'm looking forward to sitting down with a cup of hot Lyons' Irish tea and listening to every single track...

On Monday, November 23, Susan will be performing live on the Today Show in New York City! Supposedly, she will be performing a 30 minute concert (we could only hope it would be uninterrupted!). Check your local listings for times.

Susan has been officially nominated for the People's Choice Award in the "Favorite Breakout Music Artist" category! Please take the time (often) to VOTE for Susan here. You can refresh your browsers and vote as often as you'd like! Let's help Susan win this award!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Another dream come true...

We were all teenagers at one time...with a teenage crush on a recording star. I stood in line on an icy cold February day in Memphis, Tennessee, to have almost a front row seat in an Elvis Presley concert...and then Fabian came along.

Susan Boyle grew up in a small village in Scotland with her own teenage crushes. She loved the music of a young Donny Osmond, as well as the soundtrack from the movie Grease. Her brother Gerry has told the story that Susan spent hours alone in her room as a young teenager singing along with these favorite stars of hers.

Little did Susan know then that one day in her future, she'd be brave and audition for Britains Got Talent. Little did she know then that one day she'd be famous as Donny and all the stars in the movie Grease. I wonder if she ever dreamed about it...

One dream of Susan's has come true. During her last trip here to the United States for her Dancing With The Stars appearance, she met Donny Osmond. Not only did she meet him, she was invited to their home. Susan commented, "it was a dream come true. Donny was lovely". Supposedly, there is talk of a duet between the two as well. In several sources, Donny has been quoted as saying, "I would die to do a duet with her"!

Don't you just love the way life ebbs and flows?! I love the fact that Susan's dreams are coming true for her and that she's sharing her beautiful voice with the world...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Another beautiful performance...

If you missed Susan's outstanding performance on Dancing With The Stars, you can see it here or click play below. Not only did Susan look beautiful, but she also gave a stunning performance...once again! The only disappointment was that she didn't sing TWO songs as Michael Buble did! Along with the rest of her millions of fans, I'm looking forward to a total Susan Boyle Concert!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tonight's the night...

Be sure to check your local listings and watch Susan Boyle perform tonight on Dancing With The Stars! I confess I never watch this show, but I will be watching tonight.

Be sure to read my other blog Thinking About It for a chance to win a free copy of Susan's debut album, "I Dreamed A Dream"!

Blessings to you,

Monday, November 9, 2009

Afternoon tea with Susan...

If you've dreamed of visiting London and are one of the millions of fans of Susan Boyle, then you just might want to enter Amazon's Susan Boyle sweepstakes! Two lucky people will be awarded a trip to London and the opportunity to spend the afternoon having tea...most likely "high tea"...which would be so much fun!

Win an afternoon tea with Susan Boyle...enter here at Amazon!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Dancing With The Stars...

Susan Boyle is back on American soil! She arrived at L.A.X. on Saturday, November 7, a few days prior to her appearance on Dancing With The Stars this upcoming week. Susan will be singing "I Dreamed A Dream" and Michael Buble will be performing as well.

When asked by a nearby reporter at L.A.X. what she thought of Sharon Ozbourne, Susan replied with poise and a gracious smile, "she's very nice". Given Sharon Ozbourne's untrue, unkind and uncalled for remarks about Susan earlier this week, one could hope that Susan would remain in the U.S.A. and Sharon Ozbourne would go back to Britain!

What I saw in that video clip of Susan was a lovely, confident, talented star with a big gracious heart...

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Seventeen days...

Just seventeen more days and Susan's debut album hits the stores...and my mailbox! I can only imagine the sheer excitement she must be feeling. On Susan's official site, you can now hear CLIPS of the songs on her new album. A clip is just a few seconds long, but definitely long enough to tell me that each and every song is just as special as I'd anticipated! Just click on the word "clips" above and you'll find the audio player on the right side of that page.

On this page of Susan's official site (or try here) you can hear her personally answer questions which her fans have sent to her. It was neat to see that she's having fun with this whole process...and enjoying it.

If you haven't ordered Susan's debut album yet, just click on either of the two links on the right side of this page...Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

One thing about it - you will want your own copy of this special lady's debut album!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Track listing for Susan's new CD...

Susan was faced with the daunting task of choosing only twelve songs from hundreds that she knows and loves. I can only imagine the challenge that was! Number 9 in the tracklist is an original recording written especially for Susan.

I've heard Wild Horses and Cry Me A River...each of which has an amazing quality to it. I've preordered Susan's debut CD from Amazon and can't wait until it arrives! Here's the newly released track listing for Susan's debut CD, I Dreamed A Dream:

1. Wild Horses

2. I Dreamed A Dream

3. Cry Me A River

4. How Great Thou Art

5. You'll See

6. Daydream Believer

7. Up To The Mountain

8. Amazing Grace

9. Who I Was Born To Be

10. Proud

11. The End of The World

12. Silent Night

I'm sure Susan is waiting anxiously for the release of this long-awaited CD...just like the rest of us!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Thanks, Mick...

I can only imagine how Susan Boyle must be feeling right about now. In just a few short weeks, her debut album, I Dreamed A Dream, will be released. All those years of waiting and hoping and dreaming...and the dream is finally coming true.

Months before its release date, the album has already been at the top of "the charts". Demand for the album has been so high that Amazon has limited each customer's purchase. Imagine that! Barnes and Noble recently advertised that there was no limit there!

Months following her debut at Britain's Got Talent, people are still flocking daily to the youtube sites and listening to I Dreamed A well as other recordings that Susan as done in the past, one of them being Cry Me A River.

Even Mick Jagger has offered his opinion in Irish Central...that Susan's heartfelt, soul-stirring rendition of Wild Horses is better than his! I could have told him that, but I was glad to read it in print. Thanks, Mick...

Monday, September 28, 2009

Glamorous is fun...

I love the fact that Susan has curly hair with a mind of its own at times and the fact that she is very down-to-earth...a lot like you and me.

I can't imagine going from living alone with Pebbles (her ten year old calico cat) in "obscurity" to finding fame at the top of "the charts" in a matter of a few short weeks, but that is exactly what has happened to Susan Boyle.

From every interview I've read and every news article that has been published, Susan is so ready for this and is enjoying every minute of it!

I think I'd love it...especially a Harpers Bazaar makeover!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Susan's Story...

There's a story in each of us. We're the sum of every experience we've had throughout our years, especially the lives of others who've touched ours.

Susan's story begins in a small village in Scotland - Blackburn, West Lothian. Her parents, Patrick and Bridget, had immigrated from County Donegal, Ireland, to Scotland. The youngest of nine children in a devout Roman Catholic family, Susan was born on April 1, 1961, when her Mother was forty-seven years old.

Her surviving siblings include sisters: Bridie and Mary and brothers: John, Joseph, James and Gerard (Gerry). Her sister Kathleen, who was closest in age to Susan, died of a fatal asthma attack eight years ago. Her sister Patricia died of crib death when she was just a few months old before Susan was born.

Susan comes from an immensely talented family. Her father was a singer, her mother an accomplished pianist and her siblings are all talented in music and the arts. Family gatherings are often a time for music. Although Susan had been singing since an early age, it was at a wedding when Susan sang at the age of ten that her talent was seriously recognized. Her mother placed her in the choir at her church when Susan was 12 years old.

Susan's childhood wasn't an easy one. Due to complications at birth, Susan experienced oxygen deprivation for a period of time, resulting in learning difficulties as she grew older. Susan struggled in school because of it. She was bullied and mocked by the other children and spent a great deal of time alone. As she grew up, Susan sought refuge in music, spending hours in her room listening to her favorite records and singing along with them.

After finishing school, Susan worked under a six-month contract as a trainee-cook in the kitchens of West Lothian College. In the following years, Susan invested her life helping others by doing volunteer work at church, helping the elderly. Susan attended the Edinburgh Acting School and participated in the Edinburgh Fringe. She took singing lessons from voice coach Fred O'Neil. Susan enjoyed visiting the theatre to listen to professional singers and took advantage of performing at every local opportunity she had. Early video clips of her singing show a young and lovely Susan and a dynamic voice even then.

Susan has lived in the same rented four-bedroom, two story council home all her life. Eventually, Susan's brothers and sisters left home, one at the time, leaving Susan alone with her parents. Over the past ten years, Susan has known her share of grief, losing her father and her sister Kathleen a short time apart...then losing her mother in 2007 at the age of 91. Since 2007, Susan has been living in the family home alone, except for her beloved ten year old calico cat, Pebbles.

Susan had spent those last few years caring for her mother, Bridget, who had been ill. Mother and daughter had been inseparable. They had watched the talent show, Britain's Got Talent, together; and believing strongly in her daughter's talent, Bridget had encouraged Susan to enter.

Susan's mother died in 2007. For a while, Susan didn't sing...she couldn't. Somewhere along the way, however, Susan knew there was something she must do for her mother. In August 2008, she mustered the courage and applied for the third series of Britain's Got Talent. There was an initial audition, and she was accepted. The rest, as they say, is "is history".

No doubt, you've seen the video clips of each performance, and you know that Susan came in second in BGT. In my opinion, that may actually have been a "blessing in disguise". Now, she has time to pursue much bigger and better things...such as pursuing the dream she had in the first place - being a professional singer!

Susan has participated in a glamourous photo shoot with Harper's Bazaar. There have been dozens of interviews, and Susan has met her share of "stars". She has traveled to America and been met by a thousand fans at the airport. Susan is now living her dream come true. Currently, Susan is living in a plush apartment in a wonderful section of London and concentrating on completing her first album , I Dreamed A Dream, which is due out November 24th. Even months before its release date, the album has been at the top of the charts.

I'd like to believe that Bridget Boyle somehow knows that the world has fallen in love with Susan and now knows what Bridget knew all along, that her daughter has an incredible gift...

Note: I wish that I could have interviewed Susan personally about her life. There are so many questions I'd like to ask her. I'd also like to tell her how impressed I am with the courage that she has demonstrated in pursuing her dream. Instead, I had to read every interview that I could find to get the answers in her words.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Susan Magdalene Boyle, my favorite Scot...

Unless you've been living in an ice cave in Siberia, you've heard of Susan Boyle! More than likely, you've been one of the millions of "hits" on youtube, listening to her Britain's Got Talent debut. I'd venture to guess if you've heard her once, you've listened several times. I know I have.

The last time I was a true "fan", I was fifteen years old and standing in line outside Ellis Auditorium in Memphis, Tennessee, on a bitter cold February day in 1961. This was my chance to see a young Elvis Presley in concert at the Special Matinee Memphis Charity Show, and I could hardly wait. A few years have passed since then and to be honest, I really haven't been a "fan" in all the years since. Oh, sure, there have been performers whose music I've enjoyed, but I couldn't tell you anything about them...other than maybe the name of a song I liked.

One day, not too long ago, a friend of mine emailed me a link to a performance by a Britain's Got Talent contestant. I had never heard of BGT or watched it for that matter, but I was curious and clicked on the link. There was Susan. She was eating a sandwich and, obviously, waiting for her turn to perform. It was hard not to see the shock of curly hair, those eyebrows and the dress that was the wrong color for her lovely "Winter" complexion. Oh, but there was something about her. When she said she was going to "make that audience rock"...somehow I knew she would do just that. Although she did not appear nervous when it was her turn, I was nervous for her. I wanted to slap the members of the audience and the panel of judges who rolled their eyes and made faces. I really did.

Oh, but then Susan opened her mouth and sang...with crystal clear notes and perfect pitch. I loved it. I loved the fact that jaws visibly dropped all over the audience, including the three too-quick-to-form-an-opinion judges! I loved it when the audience rose to their feet at the first crescendo and when they gave Susan a standing ovation! I was already reeled in as a dyed-in-the-wool fan, but her spunky answers and enthusiasm after her performance sealed it...