Monday, November 09, 2015


The year is 2015 and I feel like I just hit a milestone this past weekend. It’s one of those moments in your life when you remember the date 30 years from now when it’s time to reflect. The milestone I speak of was a special screening of my new GGN concert doc - Life is but a Dream. I got to showcase it on the big screen at the Royal Cinema in Toronto w/ an audience of 200 friends and colleagues. I feel like it’s just sinking in what happened… what a night! I’m turning 40 in 2 weeks and I wanted to revisit my journal of 10 years and remind myself of what I’ve accomplished. When I began writing this BLOG it was an outlet for me to document my adventures in making this Global Groove Network film come to life. For those of you who are just catching up or discovering my ramblings for the first time, I decided to write this journal as an experiment of dedication. I wanted to try and log all of my thoughts, feelings, and experiences over the years so I could look back at the making of this passion project, and remember all of the highs and lows I went through. It’s a great exercise as a filmmaker and I highly recommend it. I’m a creative soul who has loved music and movies all his life. I began my filmmaking career in my mid twenties and started this GGN passion project when I rediscovered dance music through a girlfriend breakup and a crate of vinyl I found moving out. I was 30 years of age when this happened… the break up was hard because of the 8 year, common law marriage situation. I was looking for positivity, new directions, and this crate of records reminded me of a time in my life when I was feeling the same way as I was now. Rave culture of the 90s was a place where I grew as an individual when I discovered it at 19. My parents at the time had divorced when I left for university. I was a competitive swimmer on the national level who was forced to quit because of an injury… Swimming had defined a lot of who I had become, my identity; I was part of a team. Losing both of my families killed my mental state, and when you’re that young, it makes you feel like your life is over. I felt lost, unwanted, not sure of how to move forward. I’m not going to lie; I was a depressed kid going through some serious shit. Looking back on it now, I think back on how amazing it is that we can change so much and so quickly as we go through things that are mentally and emotionally challenging. I didn’t realize how much it affected me until a year later as I continued to push the envelope in all aspects of my party lifestyle. School took a backseat and I’m glad that I had enough sense to come out the other end by graduating and making smarter choices with my life. A big reason for this change had to do with the friends and family I met through the dance music scene at the time, and taking dance music’s message of PLUR to heart. This was truly a life changing moment and I’m so excited I got to make a love letter film about some of these experiences more then once. Here we are now, in the present. I’ve just screened my second film under the Global Groove Network banner called ‘LIFE IS BUT A DREAM’. It’s a story about the EDM Digital Dreams Festival experience and the people who helped create and facilitate this massive event – Ryan Kruger and Gavin Bryan. Toronto has a lot of history when it comes to dance music culture dating back to the late ‘80s. The DJ talent that performs in Toronto is truly global because they love coming here. We, as a city seriously love this type of music, have amazing homegrown talent, and have supported the culture in a big way since the ‘90s. The Digital Dreams festival is a culmination of that ‘90s essence with the people who created it. The two individuals that you will meet in the DOC have been involved with throwing raves, parties, and establishing legendary clubs in Toronto since the ‘90s. This festival was a dream back then that became a reality 4 years ago. Digital Dreams draws about 80 thousand people over the course of its weekend festivities and has become the largest music festival held in downtown Toronto. One of the exciting things about GGN for me has been the archiving. I began doing this with the first film and to be able to put together another cool chapter in Toronto’s dance music history has been very rewarding. It took about a year to get it done and a lot’s changed with the festival and it’s business partners. What makes this even more special is I’m not sure if I would have got the same access if I didn’t decide to make this DOC when I did… It’s amazing when something just naturally falls together. I can’t help but feel like it’s the end of a chapter in my life. This DOC represents the end of an era for myself as a filmmaker covering dance music. My goal moving forward with the Global Groove Network, the new mission statement of music shaping identity is to explore NEW music cultures. I love dance music but I LOVE all kinds of music as well. I feel like there are so many stories out there about people’s soundtracks that I just feel like its time to go in a new direction. I would like to thank the Toronto and Global dance music community for allowing me to get up close and personal these past 10 years. The GGN journey made it to film festivals, network broadcasters, and managed to build a following on social media that have been extremely supportive. It’s been a great time on the dance floor and I feel blessed. I’m really excited for what lies ahead. Connect with us at: Until next time … Cheers to new directions!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Hey there Journal – It’s been awhile. It felt like it was a good time to revisit you. We are officially a month into the New Year and a lot has happened since we last spoke. It’s been almost 10 years since starting this relationship with you; examining my journey through the written word while making my passion project – The Global Groove Network (GGN). You’ve never judged me journal; and are always willing to listen. Every time I decide to sit down and share with you I make sure I read the first entry I ever wrote back in 2006 as well as my last entry to get some context. A year can go fast and this past one was no exception. Looking back on it now I see a lot of interesting changes and evolutions to who I’m becoming. The people around me have changed with new faces coming in and out of my life and offering fresh insight to my perspective on the human condition. Things have been positive and negative but all in all, it’s been an amazing experience with great individuals. The year is 2015 and it’s been officially 12 months since my film got picked up by the CBC network in Canada and distributed globally on DVD and Digital. Was it everything I expected? Not exactly… Am I happy how my film was handled from a distribution and release perspective? Not really but some success has happened… Do you feel the GGN journey is wrapped up now that you made it to a network and distributor? Not at all… This to me is where we truly begin. With the success of selling something, it’s allowing me to find new doors to open. What’s also meaningful is I’ve started a film archive of a music scene that’s changed me and that I love. I look forward to more people discovering these documentaries I’m making for years to come. These passion projects will always be available until the day I die and what I think will be really cool is people 25 years from now renting it, buying it, or finding it on a digital service like Netflix. I feel like a historian in a way and all these hours I put into it making web videos, films, and writing journals, I get a real sense of fulfillment showcasing the dance music scene in the city I love – Toronto. Along with my city, it’s exciting to travel the global, find other relatable topics, and discover new voices and talents in the EDM and House Music scene. The new topics I have planned to film will take the audience in new directions as we tackle topics like drugs, gay icons, global history, and the future of EDM. Stay tuned… For the past year I’ve been taking in the electronic music community from many different angles. Having to be hands on, hustle, research, and post all your own social media to hopefully get individuals to rent or buy your film, is a tough process as an independent artist without PR cash flow. You don’t simply click a button and the people start coming to you. The marketplace is so saturated with content that it truly becomes an abyss. You question whether your message is really reaching your target market because of people’s habits and the restrictions that are in place to encourage people to spend money on ads. When Hollywood studios are spending more money on PR then actual production budgets, you begin to wonder on how can you compete? Independent films need the most PR of all and posting a FB message is only the beginning. Another hurdle that you have to deal with in our day in age is access. Everyone expects everything for free because of how we are growing as a society. Piracy is something that will only get worse and to off set the costs is almost impossible. Along with Piracy being an issue you are also now dealing with the A.D.D AFFECT. People have a hard time focusing because of the borage of content they get from all these digital outlets, that to actually sit down and absorb a story in a long format can be challenging – especially for the younger generation which I cater to with GGN. To me – this is the year where I truly understood this at its core. Am I fan of this new approach to viewing? I would say ‘not really’ but you deal with it… I feel we are becoming a society that is starting to forget to take a pause and smell the roses once in awhile. We are always looking for the next thing without taking a moment to enjoy what we have right in front of us. I’m turning 40 later this year so maybe it’s just a generation issue but I’m beginning to notice the same habits in the people that are the same age. One thing that people are not realizing by taking this approach to their life is they are missing out on the things that could potentially matter. I’m all about taking in the world and what it has to offer but I equate this scenario to working smarter – not harder. To truly find that ZEN in our own lives we need to pull back a little and get back to basics. Less is more… Along with this life lesson I’ve managed to keep creative and am excited at what GGN has on the horizon. This past summer I had a chance to film the third installment of the Digital Dreams festival in Toronto and I must say it’s an amazing evolution of the Global Groove Network experience on film! What started as a simple ten-minute webisode has turned into a spectacular forty two-minute concert film that examines the festival experience through the promoter’s eyes. The documentary looks at what it takes to put on a big EDM FESTIVAL and the footage we managed to shoot and have access to of past Digital Dreams festivals, makes this film truly an eye opening journey into the power of dance music. It’s looking like it should be wrapped up in April and I aim to do a special screening in Toronto in May and look at film festival options next year. It’s very exciting and I can’t wait to share this documentary with you soon… Stay up to date by following us on Twitter or Liking us on Facebook for your chance for free tickets to the screening. Thanks for making the time to read this and stay up to date with my journeys. I hope I’m able to give you a little perspective of what goes on in the mind of a filmmaker and creative consciousness. I enjoy the reflection… It’s good for the soul. Until next time ... Shoot for the stars and never get frustrated if all you can only hit are the clouds. It’s all about the journey that makes you evolve. Take care.

Friday, July 18, 2014

THE GGN JOURNALS - A Mid-Day & Night Summer’s DREAM …

It’s been a few weeks since my colorful dream of electronic sounds, fashion forward thinkers, and killer beats from all the EDM genres past and present. This sunny backdrop set the emotional stage for my first electronic music event of the summer… Digital Dreams. I was blown away by this year’s event, the way it was run, the line up, the mood of everyone, it was truly a definition of the word PLUR. I’m excited I got a chance to bring my film crew and capture some moments, which I plan to showcase in an upcoming webisode of GGN presents - ‘Life is but a Dream’. Digital Dreams is going into its third year and I felt this was a great time to examine the festival and make a doc-episode about it. Knowing that most of the coverage would be about the DJs I thought it might be a lot more interesting if we went behind the scenes. I wanted to get the festival perspective from the people who actually bring this event to life. 80,000 people attend this each year and it continues to grow. The people I focused on were some of the Toronto scene party facilitators such as Ryan Kruger, Mark Russell, Gavin Gerbz, and Brent Hayward to name a few… What does it take to be the person who is able to wrangle the talent, the space, and the people to attend something like this? I’ve thrown parties in the past and I must say I hated it. I was always stressed about it – Will people show up? Will this be something noteworthy? Is all the work that you’re putting into this worth it??? The amount of bullshit that you usually have to go through to throw a party is mind-boggling. I always ask myself that question because it honestly leads to some of the worst anxiety I’ve ever faced… Watching it done on the level that Digital Dreams is done – as well as seeing how they have extended their creativity to bring a great event to it’s participants – is certainly a university degree achievement in my books. I’m excited to introduce the audience Electronic Nation Canada’s staff and some of the other worker bees behind Digital Dreams… This is truly a team effort. Being someone who has been witnessing and documenting the EDM scene in Toronto and around the world for the last decade for my film, I’m excited that I’ve been able to be one of the lucky one’s to witness a real evolution of what electronic music’s power can represent. Since my time in the WOMB to NOW - the grown adult I’ve become (closing in on his 40th birthday) - I’ve realized music has been a guide and history indicator in my life. I’m a lover of all music but the last 8 years I’ve been really focused on the electronic music scene and have watched from the sidelines, recording my thoughts for the film and future web episodes, and getting familiar with what seems to connect with people musically. I pride myself on understanding the power of music based on my hours dedicated to it for my work but in reality I never really think of it as work. I’m a creative person who thrives on what his environment can provide for inspiration. I’m always listening … Every task in my daily routine usually has me plugged into some sort of dance beat in the background and as I get older, it’s really starting to tie in with the memories I’m creating with my everyday life. Digital Dreams was one of those moments and I’m excited I got to capture in the way I like to be creative. As a filmmaker we thrive on the idea of telling a story or giving our audience an informal education through imagery accompanied by sound. I like to inform people with video through music and visuals … I try to be someone who doesn’t hit its audience over the head. I’m one piece to the big puzzle of information that is out there. As I get older I feel I have more to say and I’m grateful that people have made the time to watch and listen. I think we all have a voice and I’m always excited to hear those around me and learn. As I sign off I think of when I started this BLOG 8 years ago… I don’t really know who reads it but I still get inspired to keep writing it. I recently looked back at some of my past entries and I couldn’t help but feel warm and fuzzy inside. It’s nice to witness a change in my own life. I’m happily married – I still love House Music – and I’m still passionate about the path I’ve chosen in the film industry. Life can be tough but what doesn’t kill us – makes us stronger. I borrowed that … when someone has it right; Someone has it right! Until next time … Be Happy!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The GGN Journals - When You Wish Upon a Star!

The beginning to the New Year has been exciting in many ways for the Global Groove Network. A film journey that has taken 8 years to bring to a global audience has finally started to become a reality. I’m excited to announce that my DOC – a passion project about music and the soundtrack to our lives - has found a broadcaster in Canada – THE CBC. We have a scheduled release of the documentary happening this May on Canada’s national television network before it hits all the major ON DEMAND services like ITUNES come June 2014. What excites me beyond the accomplishment of actually making a DOC like this is that I’ve managed to put together a film with many incarnations. The CBC version of the movie is a shorter broadcast version while the directors cut will hit ITUNES and ON DEMAND soon after. Having the opportunity to tell such a personal story on so many levels, have the themes reflect the power of music that I’m passionate about, and be available to a global audience to rent and buy this year, has been truly a rewarding end goal experience as a filmmaker. I get really excited when I have the chance to tell a story to an audience – no matter the size. The inner burn I get from creating a journey from reflection is truly inspiring to someone like myself who needs to be expressive. This passion that burns 24/7 inside me is something I don’t quite understand but I’ve grown to love and hate as a storyteller. I’m finally getting some conviction as a growing artist, I’m beginning to believe on my end in my abilities, and when you finally get recognition from your peers through a sale and finally your own self understanding of the accomplishment – it’s truly a magical feeling. I was starting to wonder if what I had to say had any importance? I think every director, writer, or producer wants to affect its audience with the stories they choose to tell. The real excitement for a filmmaker like myself comes from the pipe dream of actually making a film from scratch – no interference from an outside source - that a broadcaster or theater deems worthy of support and financial compensation. It’s not about the price tag but more about the validation. My attempts to make a career since I knew I wanted to devote my life to the film and television industry has been a dream blinded by waiting tables, selling weed, odd jobs, set work from the bottom of the ladder, and working my way to understand how to succeed in this crazy industry. Doing whatever it took to make my dream a reality has been an important factor to my resilience and success. I was never sure if I could attain this dream on any level but I chose not to give up and deal with the consequences later… This might be something that never truly happens to an artist because of the way the industry is set up. You can’t give up… The stories are true when it comes to success and fulfillment – If you build it, they will come! I’ve had the fortunate opportunity to find my wish and make it come true. I was 10 – watching ‘BACK TO THE FUTURE’ at my local theatre in 1985 with my dad, absorbing the Marty McFly magic that Michael J Fox brought to the screen. This movie made me truly understand the power of big story ideas and my passion for making films was heightened to a sense that still consumes me. I turned 38 years old this year and I feel like I’m 10 all over again thanks to my 8 year GGN experience around the globe… This moment for me has become something that I was reminded of when I saw a selfless act of charity and magic created this holiday season for a boy with a dream. I was blown away when I first saw this and for whatever reason given the memory recall of what a dream can mean. I really related to this story on many different levels and just wanted to share the idea of a dream and perseverance. Mind you this tale I’m about to highlight certainly means a hell of a lot more then my tiny dream as a 10 year old. The ‘MAKE A WISH’ BATBOY story was something I found inspiring and wanted to share. The idea of dreams in general are all about finding the things in your life that keep you moving forward. When I heard about this dream and a city that embraced making it come true for a young cancer victim – I couldn’t help but be reminded by what the human spirit represents. Here is the story in a nutshell - A young leukemia patient realized his dream to become Batman for a day as an army of volunteers transformed part of San Francisco into ‘Gotham City’ for a day. 5-year-old Miles Scott from Siskiyou County traversed the city in November 2013, maneuvering through huge throngs of admirers, as a superhero named “Batkid,” fighting crime with the help of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Volunteers, businesses, the San Francisco Giants, and even the city’s mayor and police department all pitched in to make the adventure as realistic as possible. Miles has become an Internet sensation as the project took on a life of its own through social media. The 5-year-old was diagnosed with leukemia when he was 20 months old and ended chemotherapy treatment this past June, with his cancer now in remission. The Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area executive director Patricia Wilson said - “He already battled a villain in real life. He fought cancer and won!” I wanted to share and acknowledge a story like this because I feel the way we express ourselves in this day and age can sometimes not have meaning based on the way we are forced to deal with day too day activities. The world, the people who live in mine, and the organizations that inspire me to want to be a better person, have truly made me want to inspire the globe through my artistic work. I know I have only a short time to share my perspectives and as I grow as a filmmaker and make personal films and fun generic stuff too – I hope I can bring inspiration to someone the same way MAKE A WISH did it for Miles. The Global Groove Network (GGN) as a brand – I look to showcase and expose the power of music through electronic music. My hopes are that I can create future ideas and messages that reflect a change to the listeners and viewers that happen to experience us. My plan is to ‘MAKE A WISH’ come true for the people who come into my life that need it. The awareness of this organization is a goal I’ve chosen for the Global Groove Network. I want to affect people through music and try to use my resources I’ve garnered through this experience to give back. 2014 is a special year in my life and I plan on sharing this feeling in a bigger way… Until we chat again … Lets turn that dial to #LoveLife … LIKE US on FB and FOLLOW US on Twitter to stay up to date with the network - @groovetheglobe

Monday, October 28, 2013

THE GGN JOURNALS - An END of an ERA.. The START of something NEW. Thank you Footwork & Hatiras!

It’s been quite some time since my last entry. The summer of 2013 has come and gone and I’ve been quite busy with life in general. I was working long hours over the course of the summer in the film and television industry in Toronto and managed to find some time to decompress and figure out some things. You forget how fast time can fly by and it’s usually big moments that wake you up and remind yourself how far you’ve come. My moment happened this fall when I heard about the closing of a dance music institution that I was quite fond of, Footwork Nightclub. As a film maker and party patron, I had the opportunity to get to know the people who ran this special venue and was able to capture moments of magic for my DOC from inside it’s walls. This underground hot spot showcased some of the biggest names in the EDM scene today, put the spotlight on the rising stars of tomorrow, give a place for Toronto’s own home grown EDM talent to blossom, and still manage to keep its underground status of unique dance beat bookings, which people always seemed to appreciate. The club was intimate, family like with its regulars, and provided the city of TO with almost 10 years of memories for its patrons as well as a stellar global reputation for it’s international travelers. Footwork has officially closed its doors as of last week and I can’t help but be thankful I got to be a part of its club history. I wanted to write this journal entry with a big Thank you in mind to the Footwork family, specifically Joel and Stephan, for all of their support and contributions to the Global Groove Network and its evolution the last 7 years. I feel as they evolve and move on to new endeavors in club culture, I’m gearing up for a similar evolution in the Global Groove Network experience. The countdown is officially on for the Global Groove Network’s release to the public in January on ITUNES. Along with the release of the DOC we have some exciting colloborations planned with artists from the film. Our first project will involve Canada’s own Juno winning EDM producer Hatiras and his latest concept album releasing in the New Year. The album was conceived in the spirit of evolution, emotional change, and growing as an artist. When I first listened to the album it surprised me in a great way. I feel like it’s something original in nature, something of influence from the 70s era of concept albums. It almost feels like Pink Floyd with an electronic flare. The album explores the 80s much like Depeche Mode and New Order did with its electronic synths. You could also say it’s reminiscent of other EDM conceptual pieces like HOMEWORK by Daft Punk or FatBoy Slim’s BETTER LIVING THROUGH CHEMISTRY in the 90s. To see this producer evolve and get to be part of the visual side of things is an exciting new direction for myself, and the Global Groove Network experience. I cannot wait to show you what we’re up to in the coming months! I’m also planning on doing some upcoming DOC episodes next year on the web with other big international talents from the film and new people I’m always discovering from the emails that are sent to me on a daily basis. The Global Groove Network is about how music shapes our identity and as we all build that soundtrack to our lives, my goal as a filmmaker is to showcase the visual side and inner workings of EDM culture in 2014; as well as give you something to add to your play list. As someone who loves EDM I also hope to share a passion for the power of music in general. I’m fuelled on a daily basis by music of all genres. Dance music and the culture that goes along with it shaped me at key moments in my life and as I continue to evolve with age the appreciation of a good DJ set, well produced track, a killer venue that houses it’s followers for a night of dancing, will always affect me in a unique way. It’s time to build new memories, moments, and experiences with the Global Groove Network in 2014. I plan on visiting my journals on a more regular basis as we gear up for our film release so stay tuned! A big thank you to all the people who continue to support us as this journey to the masses continues. For all the new people that discover us as we expand and become available to experience on ITUNES in the new year - I hope to give back to a feeling that we all experience in some way with music and the medium of visual storytelling. Welcome to the Network; the Global Groove Network. Find us on the web, Facebook, Twitter, and Soundcloud at - @groovetheglobe – and stay up to date with our upcoming content and news!

Monday, April 22, 2013


I had finally had an amazing dream last night; amazing dreams only started to happen once we succeeded with Kickstarter and officially wrapped up the post-production for the DOC. Along with this accomplishment I found out this week that we got accepted to this years NXNE festival to premiere our film in June, in the city that it was inspired by; Toronto. Things are really looking up for this little passion project and the excitement continues to build as we prepare to begin this next part of the journey. Pursuing a dream can be bliss but also a nightmare. I find some irony to this fact but now that I’m finally having some happy thoughts on my mind, it helps make life a little more clear… It had been awhile. For the past few months my mind had been full of angst and stress on such a massive level that it started to dictate the story telling in my head, which would lead to some fucked up dreams and emotional exhaustion. The next time I get chased by a giant record rolling down a big hill towards me, like the epic scene in Raiders of the Lost ark with the boulder and Indy running for his life, will not be missed… Instead of making it to safety like Harrison Ford did, I would get sliced down the middle and wake up in a cold sweat. I was bringing my work to bed and it was affecting me in very vivid and weird moments during slumber. I understood why I was feeling this way but I felt like I didn’t have control over my mental situation other then staying positive; or at least hiding some of the stress behind some THC. Last night was that kind of dream that puts a smile on your face; that tropical vacation moment you get to share with your loved ones. Lets set the stage… The weather couldn’t be better; the sun is shining and the humidity suggests that this is going to be hot one! It’s only been a few hours since we landed in Miami and coming from an environment that has been cold, wet, and unpredictable for the past month; it takes a moment or two to wrap the brain and senses around that fact. Your skin begins to warm up, a light porn sweat hits your brow, that smell that cities have by the ocean fills your lungs, and the long sleeves, pants, and jacket seem out of place in a good way. This moment is something I always love to experience when I go on a vacation and this year it was bitter sweet. This memory stuck with me this year and this memory recall was clear and warm to the thought. Miami was the beginning of a journey I began 7 years ago and to have the chance to come back for this years Winter Music Conference without cameras, just as a participant knowing I had finished my film, and able to share the experience with the love of my life, a friend of ours that has been such a supportive force in both our lives, was so fulfilling. What also didn’t hurt was that my travel companions were SEXY, which added an extra sizzle to my swagger being the meat in a hot lady sandwich. This was my three’s company moment; I was an individual that if I died in some weird twist of fate… I had a pretty good story to tell in the after life. This memory has been a go to dream the past couple of weeks as I’ve gotten back to the daily grind… The reason I share this with you is I think it reminds me that we have control over how we can live our lives which I think gets lost sometimes because of the daily, weekly, monthly, and annual routines we all have to do to survive. I certainly have been lost at times in my life as I try moving forward on ‘ideas’ that I hope will succeed. These ideas tend to be big and have a lot of moving components that are usually beyond my financial capabilities. As a film maker – an artist who likes to tell stories for the big screen and TV – my passion to follow through on an idea like this documentary can defeat you at times mentally. This defeat turns into self-pity and leads to you losing sight of what’s truly important, LOVE and LIFE. Making films, writing stories, and executing productions can be very consuming because of the hours it demands to do it. Creativity is something that you can’t just call on as any artist will tell you and when it does come, you need to act on it and shut out the rest of your life to be successful. I LOVE this consumption of creativity but I can HATE it just as much… it’s something that has given a lot to my life lessons but I was forgetting about the other stuff – the other LOVE – the other moments that make up life. This is something that was realized in a big way when I stepped off the plane this year and I came up with my mantra for 2013 and beyond; #LoveLife. The meaning behind this mantra is pretty straight forward as you can see. The hashtag I feel is something that reflects the ‘NOW’ in the way we communicate with the world. The art of conversation has evolved and become something I have some reservations about but I get the idea of quick comment observations. Social commentary is something that has been able to grow in a bigger way globally through this simple expression (#). #LoveLife to me is the tag line for the next chapter in my world and as I get closer to 40, I’m appreciating the things around me a lot more. I encourage all of you to take a moment and smell the roses; it really does lead to positive things happening. Time will always tell… Until we speak again - #LoveLife

Monday, March 11, 2013

THE GGN JOURNALS - Blood, Tears, Sweat, & Songs..

March 10, 2013… All I could hear when I slept for the last three months were voices from the film. All of the people I met along the way filled my dreams with both positive and negative banter about their own experiences trying to succeed. I couldn’t shake them away; there was a constant battle of conversations in my head as everything was on the line to promote my final fundraiser. This inner torment was raising my stress levels through the roof. Campaigning on KICKSTARTER (a crowd funding site) to finish the film for my Canadian distributor has been one of the most eye opening experiences in my life. Asking people for money is the worst job in the world because it’s such an awkward conversation; I didn’t realize how awkward it could be until I was 30 days into the campaigning. It was my blood, sweat, and tears that had driven me this far and along with my wife we had been drained financially and emotionally. I would be ignored or dismissed politely when I asked some of the people I knew, all you can do is really smile because it’s not your place to tell people how to spend their money. Do you get surprised by people that you think would donate and don’t? – of course you do – but you don’t fault it; you just start re-evaluating relationships, which is the tough part. It’s hard not to go through this type of experience and not lose a friendship based on this weird test of support for one another. It’s not so much about the amount of money; it’s more about the actual support that you expect from certain friendships. We certainly had some highs and lows when it came to the support but I’m grateful to learn what I learned from this extraordinarily stressful and trying experience… With the campaign running 60 days and wrapping up this past February 21st something amazing happened. The support came in throughout the campaign but it was in the final hours that we noticed the ultimate difference. This dream became a reality as we crossed the 15k mark at midnight, a few hours before the deadline, and my wife – my partner – the love of my life - and I achieved our “must make” goal to keep the funds. It was a really satisfying moment, and finally all of the voices calmed and the dreams settled for the time being. All I can say is thank you; with so many things in this world to support, I feel blessed that people have responded and made this little independent passion project live to see another day. It feels like fate has something more in store for us… As we begin post production this month to finalize the music, the HD transfer, and digital clean up, this project about the power of music has hit the ‘7 years in the making’ mark this month. It was officially March 20th 2006 - my first Winter Music Conference in South Beach Miami - that I shot my first interview and put together a trailer to help encourage interest in the DOC. If you go to my first journal entry you can read and learn about the trials and tribulations of making a film from the beginning – It’s very fascinating as a filmmaker to read these early entries and see how the journey has played out. What’s crazy about the timeline with this journal entry is this is the same date 7 years later that I’m going to be going back to Winter Music Conference to do a private screening of this FINAL version of the film for EDM industry friends that helped me along the way. You don’t get a chance a lot of times in a year to get a group of faces together that know and respect each other and who have inspired this love letter to the EDM community and culture. The Global Groove Network is a story about finding your identity through music; specifically dance music. Having this energy of EDM personalities and doing the screening in an intimate art house surrounding – Everything feels like it’s coming full circle. The next steps of getting it out to a global audience as we move into the summer is where the journey is about to really begin but to share this moment with this kind of audience is fantastic! The BLOOD, TEARS, SWEAT, and SONGS have been something of a theme for this daily grind of getting people aware of a film about EDM culture and community. We have a large global community but support from the film and TV world is something that can be harder to find, especially when the culture still has an underground stamp on it even though the mainstream success and influence is very apparent in this day in age. We have a big hill to climb but this train continues down the boogie tracks, looking for its network members all over the world. With PR, film festivals, Blogger awareness, and word of mouth key to any successful film launch, money is something that becomes a huge factor. Not being able to afford PRESS and PR on a regular basis – I’m plugging us on social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, and Soundcloud, and putting in more hours on my off time to keep the Network out there; finding it’s audience. With our final post-production wrapping up in early April, the plan to bring the film to a theatre near you is in the works. Strategy is key so you don’t get lost in the shuffle and with so much time passing already – patience has become quite the virtue for myself in the GGN movie release. What I’m hoping to encourage people to do is spread the word about the film and it’s message. I’m going to continue this crusade to shape people’s identity in someway with showcasing great DJs from around the world, EDM culture both past and present, and turning up those killer beats that inspire a smile and potentially a booty shake on a local or global dance floor. If you’ve stumbled upon this network on line through my journals – the music and sneak peek videos we post for your consumption and enjoyment - and are curious about how you can see this documentary in 2013 then set this link to your favorites list on all your devices. I plan on updating my journals on a more regular basis, posting more music and podcasts available for free on my cloud, as we get closer to the release of the DOC. It’s an exciting time for the Global Groove Network (GGN) and as we continue to grow, I love the idea that this is something that will be a part of my life until I die. I love the music and appreciate in a new way as I age and participate on a dance floor here and there, all over the world. It’s not about going out every weekend; it hasn’t been about that in years… What seems to be my true bliss is working, exercising, walking the city with my I-POD on, and enjoying the producers and DJs I meet along the way when I do go out. This music inspires me on a daily basis and I’m glad I can share this adventure with you through my GGN JOURNALS and experiences. ‘Everyone is a DJ in their own Life’ … Thank you for letting me guide and expand your soundtrack through this mutual appreciation for music and EDM. Until we chat again... Put the needle on the record party peeps! Lots of Love – Courtney J