Saturday, June 25, 2016

She’ll Tell you a Story. And. She’ll Sing it in a Song.

Julianne Tarroja, who first made her mark in the OPM industry in 2007, which her album is in titled, “Grateful.” She wrote mostly about how she perceived the world with wide, unjaded eyes; her experience upon stepping into adulthood; her transitions as a girl to a young lady. Song themes mostly revolved around experiencing things for the first time. First love, first heartbreak, first trial, first failure, first triumph. ‘Grateful’ and ‘Tulak ng Bibig, Kabig ng Dibdib are two of her alluring acoustic pop style and hit singles.

This prolific singer and songwriter, gospel artist unveiled her long-awaited second album, Ashes to Beauty. In an industry where many musicians fear the possibility of being disconnected and unpopular. Julianne has countered culture, taking her time in becoming herself and creating an album that tells an authentic story. It took her five years to create this new album, since she experienced a bad writer’s block for two years, and she wrestled and struggled betrayal of trust, bitterness after being broken hearted. So basically her album, is about her journey of restoration, healing, finding hope, courage, and beauty in the most unexpected places.

I admit, I’m her fan girl. And I’m glad to meet her again at the the Fete de la Musique Acoustic in A Space last Saturday, June 18, as she performed 2 songs from her first album and another 2 songs from her newest album. As the host introduced her, she said that she likes the stage set-up since it’s very intimate, as she can converse to us, her audience, and there’s no spotlight flashing directly on her face. I’ve watched her performed wayback and I actually made her songs as my healing, remedy, and songs of encouragement. She’s a little younger at that time and her voice is groovy, honest, and easy on the ears —and now, her voice had developed with depth, maturity, and conviction.

 I love singers, I love storytellers, and I love writers and she’s a combination of three.

She added that she hopes the album will not only uplift and inspire, but also challenge listeners to take the ashes in their lives and take the things they believe are worthless and hopeless. “You’ll be surprised that if you look closer and you allow your eyes to really be opened, that you’ll find beauty.”

Here she goes, and be blessed... :)

Julianne: I wrote this song while I was driving home deeply sad. The line in that song that said, “I’ve been to places where I couldn’t even see the light of day, and then you came, when I wrote this one. I can’t remember why was I in crisis in that time, and that’s what’s gratefulness does to you, once you choose to see the better side of things then everything else that’s not so great just kinda fades in the background. I hope this speaks to you…


I'm stronger than before
Stronger than I'll ever be
And I raise my eyes to the One
The One who made me see
All what I thought was lost
But now is found
And I'm grateful.

Julianne: Alam nyo yung kasabihan ng mga matatanda na “Tulak ng Bibig, Kabig ng Dibdib.” Di ko maintindihan yung ibig sabihin nun, pero I still use this as the title of my song…

Hindi mo lang alam
Takot lang akong masaktan
Iniingatan lang aking puso
Kung maiibibigay ko lang ang sinasabi mo
Di na sana tayo nagkakaganito
Pasensya ka na kung hanggang dito muna tayo

Julianne: “I knew when we were gonna do this album that I didn’t want this to be about my story. I also wanted this to be about your story, and I hope that this will encourage you to tell your own. I can’t wait to hear your stories. Let’s say a friend telling their story to another friend can bring so much healing and peace to someone else’s life. And I think that’s why I wanted to put this out, ‘cause I believe that telling someone’s story both the one telling it and hearing it, it’s beneficial for both parties, so anyway, I’m gonna sing and let the song speaks for itself. This is basically what happened in 5 years that’s why the album is called Ashes to Beauty. God bless you guys, love you guys so much. Thanks for havin’ me here!

Ashes to Beauty

Will you stand with me as we face this fire?
Let this burning truth
Let it purify
Every part of me and in the end will see that
All of these ashes will be turned to beauty.

Thank you, Julianne for your soul, music, and love. Your music is an instrument of God’s healing and restoration. I fell in love with your music again. It revealed to me the beauty of Jesus through your gift.

If you wanna watch Julianne performed, she’s having her gig every Thursday in The Brewery at the Palace.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

My Own Serendipity Story

THIS IS ANOTHER SERENDIPITOUS EVENT. There are two beautiful things I want to do in my entire life, and that’s to be a lifestyle worshipper and a wedding/kiddie event organizer/singer/host. 

Last March 1st, Feast Bay Area Music Min Vocals were gathered to attend Bro George’s Worship Leading Meeting/Coaching. I wholeheartedly, undividedly listened on his words. I took down notes. I grinded the words he shared in my mind. I basked in his spirit and energy. And I must say, I felt anointed and empowered yet humbled.

Looking back, I remembered that I took a Strengths Finder exam in the office and I found out the Connectedness is my first strength.

According to the test, I can sense that every event is somehow the consequence of a series of actions, reactions, or lack of actions. I can accept that which cannot be fully explained using logic. I can say there are no accidents. I’m confident that things are linked together for a purpose that may or may not be revealed to me. It’s very likely that I hold tightly to my core values. Instinctively, I conclude that my life is more meaningful and I’m happier when I dedicate myself to something of importance to humankind. 

It can be something simple rather than something grand. I can sense my acts of kindness influence individuals to perform good deeds. I’m likely to inspire generosity in many people. By nature, I’m often the instrument in helping my teammates discover how they are linked to one another. I regularly remind them that their successes and failures are a direct result of their ability to work together.

My next strength is a Maximizer.

It defines me as I naturally figure out what makes most people unique or special. By nature, I exhibit a heightened awareness of my talents. One of my top priorities is building upon these natural abilities to create strengths. Instinctively, I realize I can determine what distinguishes each person from every other human being. 

I honor the special, the wondrous, and the rare qualities of people. I intentionally position them to attain ever higher levels of excellence. I can easily view things from someone else’s perspective even when I do not share their opinion. I deal with each individual on a personal level. I instinctively know what someone is feeling, based on the person’s words, deeds, silence, or body gestures.

The third one is being an Arranger.

It’s very likely that I’m acutely aware of how my teammates perceive my abilities. I can sense what they think of me as a person. These insights many times allow me to earn their confidence so I can contribute even more to the group’s success. Because of my strengths, I have been most productive in the past when someone in authority really took an interest in me. I likely to recall instances when they created opportunities for me to use my talents, knowledge, and skills. I often played the role of a teacher, coach, or mentor even when that was not my official title. Having a plan and knowing exactly what are required to do increases my chances of being successful. 

Understandably, I feel quite uncomfortable being assigned to a group that only manages crises, deals with the unexpected, or figures out tactics in the midst of chaos. Driven by my talents, I have a gift for recruiting people to work on tasks and special assignments. I probably know how to match talents to tasks, coordinate activities, and create schedules. Chances are good that I have a strong sense of commitment. It motivates me to make sure that things are carried through to completion even when difficulties arise.

Yes, I’m happy to know that those are my Top 3 strengths.

And I owe it to God who is absolutely faithful on His plan, surprisingly on the following day, March 2nd, I received a text from my friend asking me to coordinate her wedding soon. 

I picked up my planner and started writing the date of her wedding. I know that it will be filled with details on the succeeding months.

I realized that God really likes me despite of my weaknesses, frailties, and limitations; knows me so well, even though I sometimes don’t understand His plan, and looks undoubtedly on my strengths even if there were discouragement in the past.

He’s my ultimate connector, maximizer, and arranger! He connects my every struggles and pain to reach my dreams. He maximizes every intricate and eccentric personality that I have to match with my skills and talents. He arranges my schedule, timing, and preparedness towards my life purpose. 

He asked me to fly! =)

His promise in Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose,” was revealed to me again!

And I praise His Name now and forever, for I can maximize the use of my 
Pen and Planner! :)

Surprise! Be functional! :)