Coming full circle... returning to Rose Bartu

Coming full circle... returning to Rose Bartu

Dear lovely friends around the world,

this year has been a very emotional year for all of us! The changes in the world are frightening and I can feel the pain of so many, those close to me and those I am not personally connected to around the world. In spirit we are all connected! And if people are suffering it effects us all!

I was participating in the elections of presidents for Austria and the USA this year. I became a prouder Austrian and a less proud American :( I pray as this year comes to a close that 2017 will bring the world closer together, and that WE PEOPLE will have the courage to stand up for what is right for humanity and the world.

Personally I am looking back to a year of major positive changes. Most importantly I started working with the mazing Steve Greenwell, which is the best thing that has happened to me as an artist so far! I wanted to work with a producer, who I trusted my songs with and felt confident could create something unique with me, for many many years. As they say: when the student is ready the teacher shows up. It took all these years to grow into the artist I became to attract a producer with his experience (his records sold over 15 million times), who could see for me what I dared to dream. We started working in June and he pushed me for 6 months until he thought I was ready to record with him in the studio! I have to remind myself he is used to working with such amazing artists like Joss Stone, Diane Birch and Andy Grammer, and he expects for me to step my game up to get closer to my full potential. His name is on the line, and he will not release anything less than internationally competitive and relevant. It is a huge honor and responsibility that I get to work with him! THANK YOU to everyone who made this possible by pre-ordering the EP and other offers in my online store HERE! I will raise $9,000 more to cover all costs related to my EP, healing the world one song at a time :-) Please support in any way you can!

The last two weeks we finally recorded my vocals, piano and strings for FREEDOM, my first song he produced! Being in the studio is like heaven on earth for me! This was the first time I had a producer pushing me to my best possible performance! I had that one chance and day (an 11h session) to get my piano part and my vocals right for FREEDOM! I was so incredibly exhausted at the end. I could only finish with my sheer willpower. 

What I love the most about Steve is that he keeps pushing me to keep growing! It can be tough and it is very humbling, but ultimately I can't wish for anything better: someone who cares and sees way beyond of what I can see for myself and won't ever be satisfied until he feels I am stepping into my full potential! This is just the beginning!

As I am getting ready to roll out my new sound and brand - which I can't wait to do - Steve also recommended to change from Roswitha (my first name) to Rose Bartu (my first and last names shortened). After a few days of thinking about it I am super excited to start with a clean slate! Rose Bartu was the name I used when I first moved to NYC, it represented a new start and many new possibilities! I ended up changing my name with each new musical direction. It would have never occurred to me to go back to Rose Bartu, but now it feels like I am coming full circle! I am starting to step into my unique path and sound as an artist and returning to the name that represented all my dreams as I am stepping into fulfilling them!

2017 will be a new beginning for me, a fresh start! I can't wait to share my first single FREEDOM with you, my appeal for forgiveness and peace, and my anthem for freedom, justice and human rights for all!

Thank you for joining me on this exciting journey! My desire is that I will be able to reach, empower and inspire all of you and a lot more people around the world! I know the song is more current than I would want it to be.

The world needs hope and love! And that's what I am wishing and sending you for the New Year! May it be the best year of your life, as I expect it to become the best year of my life :-)

love love love from your Rose Bartu :-)

 

 

 

 

"How do you take responsibility as a white person for this (election) result?"

"How do you take responsibility as a white person for this (election) result?"

Dear lovely friends around the world,

this is an open letter in which I am processing; please forgive my bluntness and directness. It has been less than a week since the US presidential election results and I am still trying to understand what happened. People are hurt, scared, mourning and some re-living their traumata, because many Trump followers think being hateful, racist, sexist is OK and cool now... I read about too many stories, and my heart is bleeding of sadness and anger.

At first I felt my only weapon was to spread love and focus on my music. Then I realized that is not enough! Love is an action word, and there is much more that needs to be done! Donald Trump can be stopped, through the electoral system as intended by our constitution. By popular vote Hillary received 200,000+ more votes. Over 4,350,000 people have signed this petition already! NOW is the time to mobilize and get into action!

My best (and black) girlfriend asked me this question, which at first baffled me: "How do you take responsibility as a white person for this result."

Me? I grew up very anti-American all my life, listening to world news every morning and hearing what the US did around the world, often feeling disgusted. I came to NYC because I fell in love with the city to my absolute surprise. I made friends with liberals, foreigners, immigrants, blacks, Christians, Jews, Muslims, people from the LGBT community... What I first developed as a high school student in Austria through reading and studying MLK and black American history (I chose to specialize in it for my high school graduation) - a deep compassion for black Americans – deepened when I arrived here. I played in a black gospel church for years, have been teaching over 100 black children the violin so far, have recorded a song and filmed a video called "Building Bridges", which the Mayor of Selma/Alabama used for his re-election. I wrote a song after Trayvon Martin got killed and have been speaking up against guns. These are some examples how I use my music as an activist.

Tuesday before the results came in my amazing new producer Steve Greenwell chose my song Freedom as my next first single (of my new sound and EP, you can support and pre-order it HERE!). I started to write it on 7/4/15, and what was first a very critical American political song turned into a world anthem for freedom, justice and human rights for ALL!

I take responsibility for not engaging in conversations with Republicans about their views, and by disconnecting myself when I realize our principals and values are so different: I realized that I am not friends with any white person who voted Trump, possibly one person I haven't talked to in months. That may be the problem. I have never even bothered to seek out or become friends with any. I used to have a Swiss/American friend I was close to. And our friendship was definitely hurt by our very opposite opinions; she turned into a Republican after she got married to one during the time when Bush went to war in Iraq. I was all against it, knowing it was based on lies. I avoid political discussions. I have only been expressing my views in my blog, newsletters, Social Media and when I am on stage. I get way too emotional.

I also take responsibility to withdraw from the whole political dilemma, it made me sick to my stomach hearing Trump (I got a similar feeling in my stomach like I got when I visited for the 1. and last time a concentration camp), I couldn't even watch the discussions on TV. And therefore had few conversations with people who might not have gone to the polls or were indecisive. And when the opportunity was offered to me to travel to PA to talk to people or call people up in swing states I declined. I truthfully was conflicted about casting my vote for Hillary. I read too many European articles of specialists pointing out how war-driven her agenda is and how that will in-stabilize international peace even more. After giving my vote to Bernie in the primaries I did cast my vote for Hillary last Tuesday with a bit of a stomach ache, but it seemed the lesser evil.

Never ever did I believe this could happen, I chose to be blind like so many others. In the meantime I have done more US and international reading: I truly believe this is a global problem. The right wing populists around the world are gaining success. It enforces different issues in each country, like racism, misogyny, sexism… in the USA. 20+ years of neoliberal capitalism (invented by the Austrian economist and philosopher Friedrich Hayek) creates more and more losers in the middle class, rich get richer, poor get poorer... Populists play into the fear of people, without offering real solutions. They take advantage of real life issues and nurture hatred in (often little educated) people against "enemies" (blacks, Mexican, Muslims, immigrants, gays… in the case of D.T., foreigners, refugees and Muslims in Europe) and showing scary fascist ideas. Whereas the democratic elites are bought by corporations - in the US even officially and legally -, which are the winners of this economic system. People, who research on this, believe the only solution could be an eco-social market economy, but as long as corporations and money has the say that won't happen. Al Gore and Bernie Sanders had offered some solutions for those problems.

D.T. was mostly elected by people from the country. They benefitted the least from the progress that has also happened in the USA. Their industries they lived off have become irrelevant, and they are in survival mode feeling left out and angry. And they blame it on the government and establishment. This article made a lot of sense for me and helped me to gain more compassion.

In my opinion we have to do everything to express our disapproval of someone being president-elect who spoke so much against the constitution! All of our minorities - black, Muslim, gay, Mexican & immigrant citizens - are in total fear (I am a privileged white immigrant) and are being attacked in thousands in the name of the new president-elect! Not to mention: sexual abuse just got "legalized" too and people are reliving their traumata...

Hitler, also an Austrian, used democratic legalizations and the support of corporations and other powerful groups. From day one Trump sounded like Hitler to me, I had an aversion to his rhetoric and his lies. Hitler also discriminated and instilled fear, people shut up.

What hurts me most right now is that I see so many intelligent and educated Clinton voters, who just like back in the 1930s, shut up and decided to wait and see and give D.T. the benefit of a doubt. I see people being fearful of a civil war and not taking actions.

My dad was a war refugee of WW2. I grew up being critical to our government and politicians all my life, to take actions, stand up for our values, demonstrate, go on the street, collect signatures for law changes...

So here is my plea to the USA and the rest of the world: Let's use all of our democratic rights! We can't be fearful or support a president, who has spread hate, lies and is a dangerous man, not just for the USA, but for the rest of the world. Please, let’s not underestimate him again, we all did up till now. Now is NOT the time to wait some more! I am not talking about violence, I am talking about peaceful protests, taking a stand like MLK and Ghandi did before us. If we don't we approve and support what he spread and what is happening, and I don't approve! Thanks for joining the BUILDING BRIDGES movement!

love love love from your Roswitha

 

Talent is overrated, perserverance and consistency are the keys to success!

Talent is overrated, perserverance and consistency are the keys to success!

My lovely Roses,

today I posted this on Facebook: "My voice teacher and producer Steve Greenwell are geniuses! Can't wait to share my new songs! People come up to me and tell me how talented I am, but I am not any more talented than you! I knew by 12 that I wanted to tour the world. I have come a far way and yet have still far to go to reach the people and leaders I want to reach and impact. The journey never ends! Between ages 12 - 19 I didn't take one vacation without bringing my violin to practice, I moved out at age 14 to pursue my dream and crossed the Atlantic on my own. The question is: can you persevere when the people closest to you try to talk you out of it, when every attempt fails, when you end up without a place to live and no family around, loose your gigs, make mistakes and let yourself be manipulated... and the list goes on. How serious are you about your dreams? God will test you! TRUST and keep working on them!"

I can't believe I haven't posted since April! That is nearly 7 months... But I LOVE that the last post was named "Healing the world one song at a time!", because that became the actual link for my crowd fundraiser, and I was busy posting there since April! Click HERE to catch up with me and the 28 updates I posted since April! To read and watch the exclusive updates just pre-order my new EP and get my DESTINY album for free, which was accepted into 10 categories on the Grammy ballots in 2013. I am proud to share that I reached 100% to continue the campaign (until I release the music digitally). But I am still missing $9,000 to have all costs covered for my new EP, so please take advantage of all my cool offers in my store HERE! And I am declaring that I will raise those $9,000 for my costs and an addition $10,000 or more to cover my living expenses and be able to produce a couple low budget music videos! Cause I really want to release these new songs in a way that I can expand my reach!

Not only did I prepare and fulfill on my crowd fundraiser as I mentioned the last time, but I also attracted my absolute dream producer into my life! When I wrote about it in April I had no idea how I should go about that. It was one of these miracles that are so encouraging and confirm for me that I am on the right path! I heard him being interviewed on a video conference call and I immediately knew he was for me! You know when you get that gut feeling or intuitive thought and know you have to act on it! It helped that he played a major role in one of Joss Stone's album (Mind, Body & Soul), which was a major soundtrack in my life for some time!

May I introduce you to the amazing Steve Greenwell, he produced incredible artists like Joss Stone, Diane Birch and Andy Grammer, and many more. Working with him since June has been the most challenging, empowering and inspiring experience in my artist life! I am learning so much, and never have I felt so supported and understood as an artist! I love that we are taking the time to let the songs organically develop, cause there is so much I am learning to implement! If you pre-order my EP you can listen to the recording of our first live recording session together!

Another way to get regular information is to sign up for my newsletter, which I send out twice a month, you can sign up on my website (just scroll down) if you haven't yet (and yes, you will get the whole DESTINY album for free too ;-)

Thanks for your interest in my music and what informs my songs, which is my life and how I observe everything around me!

Live your DESTINY and love fully!

Always your Roswitha

Healing the world one song at a time!

Healing the world one song at a time!

I started to write my 40+ new songs in September of 2014. During that time I was homeless in NYC for 53 days (I was asked to leave after many years in my Brooklyn apartment) and moved 8 times from couch to couch while all my belongings were stored in storage. I am grateful for my amazing friends (NY apartments are small)! It was a very humbling and creatively productive time. I had my Blue Note show (watch some live footage here ;-) during that time, after which I decided I wanted to become a songwriter for other artists. And the songwriting began again...

Little did I expect that along the way more and more people in the industry told me I needed to put some of these songs out myself, because I have such an unique voice and style...

My vocal coach and music business mentor pushed me to dig deeper to create signature songs, in which I share some of my deepest feelings, my shame, guilt, fears, insecurities... Those writing sessions can be excruciating and hard work. I shed a lot of tears as I touched on some subjects that I would rather just ignore. It helps when you have a co-writer and not doing this on your own! But they brought so much healing! I realized I have to look at and move through those difficult subjects to move beyond and grow as a human being. And as I go through that process I will give others permission to get in touch with their feelings and hopefully bring some relieve or healing through my songs to them.

That is why I am an artist and songwriter, to be able to share my experiences and touch people's lives, transform them through my music. It is not about me, I am just the the person through which you can find yourself. I am grateful for each of you joining me on this journey healing the world one song at a time (watch my video here ;-)!

My next step is to go into the studio with an amazing producer to develop the songs so I can share them with you! I produced my Destiny album myself. Now I want to put more minds together, cause I know the result can be so much better! I notice that in my co-writing sessions!

I am preparing a crowd fundraiser and I will need your support contributing and sharing it with others! I can't wait to tell you about all the different opportunities I am creating for you to join me on my journey and be part of my new project, which to me means releasing the most vulnerable songs I have written in my life.

Love and live your Destiny

Always your Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

 

Love always wins in the end!

Love always wins in the end!

I woke up this morning on too little sleep and what got my attention were the terrorist attacks in Brussels. My first reaction was sadness, fear and anger. Then I felt urgency to react with LOVE!

This urgency comes on a new profound inner peace I found last week. I felt for the first time in my life that if I would die now I have lived my life to the fullest and have given the best I could. I felt that everything that I get to create, contribute and share moving forward is icing on the cake. I plan to live another 50+ years if God allows it, and will do the best to create the biggest possible positive impact I can have.

After the sad news of Brussels I felt the time is NOW to get my songs out into the world, no day is guaranteed. I have written around 40 new songs since my Destiny album, many of them really close to my heart sharing my deepest feelings. I believe some have the potential to transform many lives, just like I have been transformed digging deep while writing them, which can sometimes become a painful process… Since I started co-writing the songs have been getting better and better and I can’t wait to share them!

This time around I want to hire an amazing producer, so that I get to deliver my messages in a way that they can be widely received. I want you to know that I will start a new crowd fundraiser and will implement other fundraising ideas soon to be able to finance producing my songs. Please let me know if you have any ideas for me. I would love to hear from many of you! I want these new songs to impact many lives.

I am sending lots of love and peace out into the world! Let’s keep our hope strong, cause love always wins in the end!

Love and live your Destiny

Always your Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Is your coach telling you what you don't want to hear?

Is your coach telling you what you don't want to hear?

It was many years ago that I learned that most successful people have coaches, not just musicians and athletes. Now in those areas I want to grow I seek out a coach. Often that can be painful, you have to let go of the known and step into the unknown, often a very uncomfortable feeling.

In November I put myself in an 8-month Mastermind with 21 other artists lead by my vocal coach and music business mentor Cari Cole. I thought I was ready to go into the studio recording my new album with a producer. I wrote over 35 songs since fall 2014 and refined many of them over the summer. And I love them! My coach was pushing me further, telling me I needed to dig deeper in my writing. Deeper? How much deeper can you go? Of course I didn’t want to hear that… but I believe in coaches, their whole purpose is to tell us what we don’t want to hear ;-)

Somehow the pieces of the puzzle all as a sudden came together for me: I realized it is my purpose as an artist to birth songs that will transform lives. But first I have to go through that transformation myself so I can share my epiphanies with the world in my songs. Most recently I have written several songs that had me in tears while writing them. Digging deep can be exhausting, cause we often don’t want to go to the places that hurt. It is my prayer and wish that I will be able to produce some of them with an amazing producer, so I can share them first with you and then with the world!

Have you discovered your purpose and shared it with others? Do you have someone in your life, who tells you what you don’t want to hear with love so you can grow to your full potential? 

Are you following your heart “Here & Now”?

Are you following your heart “Here & Now”?

To go deeper and become more vulnerable with the world I decided to share the process and my stories and epiphanies with you, which are at the foundation of my songs.

In case you haven’t listened to these songs yet, then It’s Time for you to listen to my Destiny sampler and get all 13 songs for free! Click Here and Now  

A few thoughts on some of my song titles of my Destiny album. I would LOVE to hear your thoughts too!

1. It’s Time: I am partially super shy – people never believe me when they meet me in person I started to withdraw at age 3 (remember my last blog?) and followed my mum around all day. Even though I moved out at 14 and became independent at an early age, it took a lot of work to get out of my shell (and over my own decisions I had made as a kid). I started to pursue my dream of singing not until I had finished my music studies… What are you afraid to pursue? It’s Time to live your life un-apologetically!

2. Purpose: I was the good girl, wanted to please everyone and avoided conflict. That is impossible if you pursue your purpose. Now I am working on my Building Bridges vision to foster peace. Are you concerned of what others might think of you and avoiding pursuing your Purpose?

3. Change: I am insecure and afraid to be judged, but we will always get judged, so what! It is time to stand my own ground and share myself with the world. I have overcome a lot and have a lot to share! I have nothing to hide, and no one to protect myself of. Change is gonna come, and it starts with me! How do you want to create Change in your life?

4. My Life: All my life I was seeking my parents’ approval. I found out I am not the only one That just shows me that I truly care and honor them! I know they love me, and all they want for me is to be happy. Living my dreams is what makes me truly happy! Whose approval are you seeking? Are you afraid to live your own Life?

5. Destiny: I am super sensitive. People think being vulnerable is being weak. I believe it is the contrary. It is showing strength! I have to find a healthy balance of being compassionate and not letting things get too close to me. In my song One of Us I processed Trayvon Martin’s killing, it is my anti-gun song. Are you living your Destiny?

6. Here and Now: My homeopath once said to me: you didn’t choose an easy route in your life, you chose to climb Mount Everest (by moving alone over the Atlantic ocean to NYC and living here as an artist). I followed what my heart told me to do, despite the obstacles I had to overcome. Are you following your heart and living your life Here & Now?

It’s Time for you to listen to my Destiny sampler and get all 13 songs for free! Click Here and Now Or come to my next live show in NYC

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

 

Good girl, really? hard to imagine, right ;-)

Good girl, really? hard to imagine, right ;-)

At 3 years old my 3 older siblings started to tease me after an incident “But you are nice, aren’t you?” I was the good girl and some of my siblings hated that (especially the two I was in-between). I decided going to my mum for support has negative repercussions, so I never would go for any support to her again. I made up I was on my own and couldn’t trust anyone. I was hiding out in my room and secretly crying when I was hurt. Noone knew, cause with six children my parents were more than busy. I turned into a serious girl and lost some of my fun, carefree and playful self.

What decisions did you make as a child that you are ready to let go of to expand your life and pursue your Destiny and dreams? I would love to hear from you!

That decision pretty much ran most of my life. I created a very independent life, literally. I moved out age 14 to study at the Music Academy in Graz/Austria while attending a specialized high school for music students. Later I moved across the Atlantic ocean to NYC on my own, where I became an independent artist, no coincidences Our decisions run our life until we discover them and take new actions. My life in NYC has been about getting out of my comfort zone and expanding beyond what I thought was possible for this shy girl…

Guess what, I am forever done being independent! This year is all about creating teams in my life and empowering and inspiring leaders around me! Not a new creation for me, but I am taking different actions. I found out I function so much better in community! I LOVE people and without extending myself to support others and letting others contribute to me by holding me accountable to my bigger self I revert back to the “good girl”, who was afraid to speak up for herself, kept her dreams (like singing) secretly close to her heart, kept withdrawing and hiding behind her violin.

I am starting a 90-day Leadership Training this weekend to put myself in a supportive team, a 6-month Songwriting Circle with 47 other artists and I am currently also in an 8-month Artist Success Circle (both circles lead by celebrity vocal coach + new music business mentor Cari Cole). I can’t wait to share with you what I am creating I did a photo shoot and a soft rebrand of my website queenrosemusic.com, but there is lots more to come! Stay tuned!

What are you taking on this year to expand your own boundaries? I would love to hear from you!

Love and live your Destiny

Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Am I interested in the wrong men? Alanis Morisette got me thinking…

Am I interested in the wrong men? Alanis Morisette got me thinking…

I came across this wonderful version of “You Oughta Know” On The Howard Stern Show by Alanis Morrisette when I found out about Johnny Fratto’s death in November. I was shocked. I listened for the first time in memory of Johnny, who was a regular guest on the show and through whom I heard of the show.

I met Johnny in L.A. two years ago after which we talked on the phone. Johnny listened to my DESTINY CD and wrote me “I have your CD in my car and it is wonderful!!!” He wanted to help me with my career. He had tons of ideas, even wanted to get me onto the Howard Stern Show Thanks Johnny for shining a light for me! Sometimes we just need someone to believe in us to keep us going!

I also listened to parts of Alanis Morrisette’s interview after her performance and it made me wonder: am I interested in the wrong men?

Alanis is a very smart & reflective person, clearly she did a lot of work on herself, if she talks of “love addiction withdrawal” being the worst. I have gone through that one… She pointed out an alpha man with an alpha woman is high energy and hot, but not sustainable. Yep, I have experienced that… She said an alpha power woman works best with an empowered beta supportive man. She said “my husband loves my fame, I believe he is born to support the powerful feminine!” So beautiful that she gets his support! This got me thinking: Maybe I am interested in the wrong men…

What are your desires? What are you searching for? Your own truth within yourself, for a partner in life, how to keep the joy, spark, desires and love going within a relationship when work and routines take over? I wrote several songs on my DESTINY album sharing my search and desires. I want you to have my empowering songs for your rainy days You can go and listen to a sampler of the album and get it for free here http://www.queenrosemusic.com/free-giveaway/

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Have you found the PURPOSE of your life? Viktor E.Frankl

Have you found the PURPOSE of your life? Viktor E.Frankl

I thought I finally got what the PURPOSE and meaning of my life as an artist is: to bare my soul, share my struggles and epiphanies, to bring hope and inspiration to those who are searching and seeking, just like me. Who isn’t?

I remember many years back I was a young teenager and I got to hear the late Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist Viktor E. Frankl – a concentration camp survivor – speak at the university in Graz, Austria, where I went to a specialized high school for music students. He was one of those amazing human beings who just gave you chills when speaking and sharing about his life. His school of psychology called logotherapy is all about finding the PURPOSE for our life. We can find it in anything – even sickness. In his book “Man’s Search for Meaning” he wrote “…Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” This is a man who found meaning in surviving the concentration camp, so he could write a book when he got out, and he said – I heard it myself – that is the only reason why he survived. He didn’t give up. He had meaning in his life in the most excruciating circumstances one could ever imagine…

My wish and dream is that it will empower you to follow your DESTINY and your dreams!

Maybe this blog is the beginning of my book, which I wanted to write to accompany my DESTINY album since 2011 My life philosophy is IT IS NEVER TOO LATE, for anything! What actions are you going to take in this new year to get closer to your DESTINY?

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Do I sound like Edith Piaf? It is hard not to rush…

Do I sound like Edith Piaf? It is hard not to rush…

On Saturday I did a photo-shoot in my personal environment, so I can give you a little insight into how I work and live: writing new songs for my new album, creating my new sound. To be in the in-between (of albums) can be a challenge. I wrote over 30 songs in a year, and have been told I need to dig deeper. It is like creating a relationship or any other dream. It is hard not to rush the process, because I can’t wait to share my new songs with you!

My singing reminds others of both Edith Piaf and Marlene Dietrich. It is my voice and my accent I believe, not so much my songs and style. In December Edith Piaf, the French singer, songwriter and actress, would have turned 100. The month before my grandmother would have turned 100. Coincidence, but my grandma always wanted to become a singer, and she couldn’t. So living my dream as a singer/violinist means a lot to me! Are you pursuing your dreams? Are you surrounding yourself with those, who lift you up?

The first person who compared me with Edith Piaf was my artist friend Timothy Stachecki, who gave me a video testimonial about my DESTINY CD Release Show (you can watch HERE): “…there was almost like an Edith Piaf kind of grittiness to the singing that appealed to me far more than I anticipated and it was just exciting to see… universally able to be appreciated… there are not very many people who can bring that depth of feeling and that depth of authenticity to music…” Maybe I need to take some inspiration from Edith Piaf? I have never listened to her! Who are you taking inspiration from? Who is inspiring you to move forward despite challenges? Who is in your camp?

WISHING YOU THE BEST YEAR OF YOUR LIFE in 2016!

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Today (1.Sunday in advent) would be grandmother’s 100. birthday! World War II memories, refugee movements...

Today (1.Sunday in advent) would be grandmother’s 100. birthday! World War II memories, refugee movements...

Today would have been my grandmother’s 100. birthday. The mum of my dad was an amazingly strong woman, who would always kick my butt when I felt sorry for myself She told me her biggest dream was always to become a singer, but she didn’t have that chance in her lifetime. I had that dream too, but I didn’t have the courage until much later, long after her death, to pursue that secret passion of mine. Since her death I have been wearing the ring she was wearing on her finger until she died. I have been thinking of her daily! And I get reminded how lucky I am living my dreams and living in peace, and how grateful I am to my strong grandparents, who lived through two world wars and hunger, and my parents, for their strength to survive and the future they created for us to live into!

In honor of her birthday I read through the interview I took with her for my high school graduation (I specialized in history). I interviewed my grandmother about the last few months in World War II and the time after the war ended, how she fled with 3 little kids from “Sudetenland” (parts of Czechoslovakia, which were inhabited primarily by Germans until the end of the war, when they all got expelled) loosing and leaving everything behind. She caught the last train before the train station of Prague was bombed and miraculously survived the journey with her 3 little kids (my dad was 2 ½, my uncles 4 & 5). It was family history her children never heard about until I shared that work with them after she died. My grandparents’ generation did not talk about the two world wars they lived through.

My brother gave my parents a book for their golden wedding anniversary this year called “Lost generation”, which speaks about my parents generation born in World War II, their traumatic experiences and how they never got to talk about it or work through it. It has been researched that many of my generation’s depressions trace back to our parents’ and our own upbringing as a result of unresolved traumata they lived through.

Only very recently one of my uncle wrote my interview with my grandmother on the computer and distributed it again. My dad, who was touched by the book he read and that interview, suggested for them to revisit their birth home and travel the route my grandma took to flee from the Russians and to find “safety” in bombed and destroyed Austria, where her parents lived. My grandma described in detail what she and her husband, who was stationed as a medical doctor in Prague, went through. It is unimaginable to say the least. Their courage, intelligence and strength helped them to survive after they had cried for a night and had decided to stay together in Prague to die as a family. But God had a different plan I couldn’t hold back my tears reading that document and the details, including how she saw a succession of Jews, who had to walk from Hungary to the concentration camp in Mauthausen. I got to visit that concentration camp with school as a teenager and could not stay there long, I got sick to my stomach immediately. One of the Jews gave her a letter she mailed, and she gave him her ration of cheese of that day getting threatened by the guard he would shoot her…

I can’t believe that so many years later this is such a relevant document: there are millions of people fleeing from war and looking to find a better life somewhere else.
My dad wrote about it so eloquently in his recent advent letter: “I view the politics provoked by refugee movements, as well as the politics, who cause these refugee movements and the increasing polarization of society as alarming. Some things said by right wing parties in Europe terrifyingly remind me of times I thought were historic. We now have to pay the price for what the Western world did and continues to do to the nations of Africa and Asia since colonization started until today’s neoliberalism with its unfair trade agreements and hidden horrendous weapon exports. What interests and powers are behind the martial battle call against terrorism – history taught us that terrorism can’t be defeated with bombs, but instead fuels it – with all of the endless suffering of the civilian population in the bombed areas, which increases the refugee movement?”

As I get reminded of my grandmothers strength and the fight she fought to simply survive, I get reminded that I have to fight the fight for a better world for everyone. The good thing about the modern world is that we are all connected with a button on our computer. We can share and encourage each other to not give up the fight for justice and peace around the world.
I pray that this holiday season brings some light and peace to everyone, no matter what each of us goes through, and that we may find the courage to bring that peace to someone else close to us.

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

photography: Jacquelyn Ackeifi, styling: JoRae

Mama Gena’s Immersion in Miami and how I learned to appreciate men!

Mama Gena’s Immersion in Miami and how I learned to appreciate men!

Are you loving your beauty and sharing it with the world?

I was sitting in the plane to Florida last Friday listening to my artist friend’s album “Turn another page” by Rebekah Maxwell, just beautiful and so appropriate to this story! This is what I wrote on the plane:

It’s my 1.time visiting Miami for a mini vacation in my birthday month with girlfriends and participating in Mama Gena’s Immersion. You haven’t heard of Mama? Well, if you are a woman and like me most of your life mostly nurtured male traits to create your life of your dreams (I turned out like my dad ;), or if you simply want to step more into your feminine power I highly recommend Mama Gena! She truly taught me to appreciate men so much more as well as myself as a woman and the amazing support women give each other! We are the backbone of society and all men! Life becomes so much more fun and enjoyable that way!

I want to share a little about my experiences as an European woman coming to NYC and how Mama helped me to learn to appreciate men and to love my beauty as a woman!

On my to the airport this morning after 3h of sleep I thoughtlessly smiled at a man, and he smiled back on the other side of the train. So before Mama I would look away, be all shy, maybe feel uncomfortable…

I used to always feel uncomfortable when men complimented me, showed interest, it was threatening to me since I moved to NYC. I have been working so hard on establishing myself as an artist, in a mostly male dominated industry, and whenever men had a different agenda it was so disappointing to me. And often crushed me. When I attended the New School Jazz Program in NYC I was mostly seen as a woman and not like a fellow musician by my (mostly male) fellow musicians, contrary to Austria, where I grew up and studied concert violin at the Music University in Graz while attending a specialized high school. I have to admit that was my biggest cultural shock. My walls went up quickly to protect myself… As a woman at heart I didn’t “man up” with the men, but instead went my own ways, which sometimes felt a bit lonely, cause I kept a safe distance and went about my own business.

After training with Mama Gena in her Mastery class I enjoy being a woman smiling at a man. The man on the train was in a group of people. He left the train last so he could walk over to me, shook my hand and said “I just wanted to tell you I appreciate that beautiful smile”. Wow. That blew me away, what a reminder how appreciative, caring and generous men are! Thank you for making me feel like the beautiful woman I am

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha

Concerts in Switzerland, visit to Austria and a big Thank You to my parents!

Concerts in Switzerland, visit to Austria and a big Thank You to my parents!

I want to share a little about my amazing transforming European trip and concerts in Switzerland. I turned out a lot like my dad, who I adore, just like my mum They have been my heroes all my life. But it wasn’t until this trip that I had this epiphany that I am still looking and waiting on my dad’s approval for my life as an artist and my music. And to the degree I have been waiting on his approval has been the degree I hadn’t fully appreciated, celebrated and loved myself and my bold, audacious life choices. I am finally publicly and officially taking my parents off the hook! Mum & dad, I love you both soooo much, word can’t express it! You shaped me who I am today! THANK YOU!

As difficult it sometimes has been, I have not wavered. I persevered and took actions despite all my fears. None of it was planned, I “simply” followed my heart, because the dream I had as a little 12-year old girl growing up in a small town in the middle of the gorgeous Austrian Alps (see pics below with 5 siblings never left me. Think of “Sound of Music”, it is that picturesque, and we had music in our house all day too instead of a TV. I grew up without a TV, listening to the world news every day at breakfast, which shaped my worldly dreams and fired up my activist heart!

As much as I sometimes wonder why I chose this path so far away from my whole family and the culture I grew up in and know about, I trust that there is a deeper reason to it I don’t understand intellectually. My Building Bridges vision is deeper engraved in my heart and soul than I can understand. God has a plan for me, and all I try to do is to stay true to what I am told to do inside of my heart. I can be freaking proud of myself! I am a visionary, and I am trusting God more than any circumstances give me proof for. I am finally publicly and officially taking my parents off the hook! They did an awesome job raising 6 kids and supporting us to pursue our dreams. It didn’t always look like how I wanted it to look like, but even my mum trying to talk me out of becoming a musician when I was a teenager was perfect: now looking back I know I made all my decisions based on my own thorough considerations. I had to step up my game to raise the funds and to make every step happen in my career. It didn’t come easily to me. I am eternally grateful for my passion and strength!

I had an amazing beautiful time with my parents in Austria, hiking, gardening, laughing, traveling together. They are in their 70s and still hiking up the Alps and skiing down in the winter! They rock! They made an 8 hour car trip to hear one of my concerts in Switzerland! I love you so much mum and dad! Thanks for giving me all of your love and support so unconditionally! The cup has been overflowing, and all the overflowing love, strength, faith, dedication, and commitment to impact the world with your humbleness, generosity and love I now have to give away! You truly made me who I am, and you still inspire me daily!

I moved out at 14 to pursue my heart’s desires, but it took me much longer to own up to them! I am grateful to you both and I am proud to live the life of my own creation bi-continental, Building Bridges with my music!

Love & live your Destiny

Roswitha