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Friday, September 23, 2005

responding to a comment on my diary

Today I received a comment on this online diary from an anonymous writer. I thought I'd respond to it. It's a pity this person didn't leave their name. At least I am open to who I am. I'd love to hear from this person directly. For now, I will publish my thoughts on the comments.
Firstly, I am perplexed by this kind of comment. Ego shift? Altruistic giver? I'm not sure if this person truly grasps the altruism I live by on a daily basis, with what I do for Songsalive! and by the free workshops I do for others. I am perplexed because this person is obviously reacting to a particular thing I wrote but doesn't write what that is. "Taking advantage?" Who am I taking advantage of? What relationships am I destroying? Please enlighten me so that I can perhaps put things in perspective. Finally, I am merely an artist expressing myself. I do a lot for others, more than most in this fickle music business. Where along the way am I allowed to enjoy the fruits of my labor or am I destined to be a matyr?
Show your face lovely commenter so I can discuss this with you. Gilli

"who is writing this? some stranger who knows Gilli or Gilli herself. Strange when people begin to promote oneself as if another where doing so...
when we have the ego shift that becomes one of taking, yet displaying a guise of "altruistic" giving. An altruistic giver - gives - less ego and more substance please. we all miss the humbe Gilli. what happened to her? this meant in the best way of constructive cricisism - because we love Gilli but feel she has lost her way and is taking advantage of those she claims to care about. SAD SAD SAD - please wake up before you destroy good relationships." Anonymous.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

mystical wanderings in new england

what a week. i have learnt (that's real english for learned) many lessons this week. one is... don't take anything personally. two is, be impeccable with your word. three is, always do your best. four is, don't make any assumptions.
I am not one to ever be rocked by the petty stuff but i will elude to one incident that made me question every sane reason as to why I do things for others, why i spend copious amounts of time assisting and supporting other artists only to find that some just don't know how to accept with gratitude, give compassion, nor see beyond their own egos.
I notice, as i preside over this altruistic organization that is Songsalive!, that I expend energies that may never go unnoticed. And that, my friends, is one thing I have to accept. No one knows the undertaking I have done to create and grow this organization, the work, on a daily basis, that goes into maintaining, creating, building, executing a website, programs, partnerships, workshops, showcases, networking, memberships, correspondence, accounting, legalities. No one truly could possibly comprehend the undertaking i have. I have a solid team, of around 30, but about 4 or 5 who truly are like rocks for me as I am for them on the same cause and a considerable energy expenditure on their parts.
I have had one particular artist, once friend, who has now decided to throw stones. It is not the first time, and I'm sure it won't be the last. But I have learnt that no matter what, I am doing a great thing, in my ongoing journey and will continue to foster creativity, collaboration and positivity amongst the artist community at large, for this is just sheer example of how we need to behave as a human planet.
To that end, having performed 2 enlightening shows in New York and New Jersey, with firey energy (see poem below which says it all in a nutshell), I made my way up north to New England, to tranquil waters, to calm observers and open arms.
i conducted a great workshop last night to 40 songwriters for the connecticut songwriters association in Glastenbury CT, an hour horth of Hartford. This area is so historic and reminds me of Old England. There are a lot of names of towns from England. It reminds me of the British countryside too, with the mists, and waterways, the animals, the trees, the houses and the softness of the people.
i'm really getting into the philosophy of "owning one's own creativity" and "enjoying the journey" with my talks. i had all ages there many over 50 year old guys who write songs and who are into folk, and young artists and mothers as well. a motley of artists, writers, etc. i was very inspired to listen and critique their songs as well as speak for an hour about the contents of my book, which are selling out!
it's like i feel like i'm on this journey from town to town, inspiring and uplifting tired artistic souls who need some inspiration and nurturing to do good, and create magic in their lives, and use their talents and voice for bigger missions. interestingly enough, there were 4 songs out of the 7 (even though there were 40 there) who wrote songs about war. these people on the east coast have been highly affected by what's going on. some songs were about old english war and historic things in this area.but still, one can see where they are at. I'm touched that at my age that people of all ages come to hear me and feel some connection and learning from what i know. I'm really humbled by it. I received this note from one of the writers today:
"Thanks so much for your feedback at the CSA meeting last night. I've considered your comments and already have some solutions bouncing around in my head. I can't wait to get home this evening and see how they work out... Since most of my "performing" has been in my basement rec room with my dog as an audience(and he wags his tail whether I'm good or awful), it was a treat to share my music with people for whom music is a central portion of their lives. The work that you are doing sounds both exciting and uplifting, and I congratulate you for having both the courage and the character to pursue your own muse, both artistically and financially. Your willingness to share with and encourage others is all the more to your credit."
I needed to read something like this. Other letters have been coming in about my talks here on the East Coast:
"You have inspired me to intensely continue to pursue my dream. It is empowering to know that you are doing what I want to be doing "
"Gilli was amazing and has given me new hope and inspiration. Please pass on my compliments. Her beauty in her heart and writing matches her outward beauty! Simply gorgeous!"
And then a really cool one about the new album "extraOrdinary life":
"From the very first song your album spoke to my heart. It was like a story book had been opened and it contained bits and pieces of my life. Some of the songs spoke directly to my circumstances while others helped to put things into perspective. I am absolutely floored by your talent. I feel your giving of self in the music. I was extremely moved. Your album is wonderful. Know that it also served as a lift to a friend in need. The timing was perfect. Continue to bless the world with you beautiful songs."
So it needs to noted, for me right now, that my mission in filling people's cup up with positive motivation, in my MPWR workshops at these music conferences, my talks at songwriter groups, my performances on tour.... ALL HAVE A HIGHER PURPOSE. This is not about me. Never was about me and just isn't. It's about the message. It's about the change that can happen in people to SHINE, to feel uplifted, to be taken on a journey so that they can see their own journey as being AMAZING, EXTRAORDINARY. I have had to remind myself of the qualities in myself that are for goodness, and for collaboration, not competition, for education, not humiliation. I say all this because my organization has been knocked a bit around by the ego of an artist who cannot see the BIGGER PICTURE. For what it's worth, I wish her well. She does have a beautiful spirit too, but, ... alas, chooses anger over harmony, ... public humiliation over reconciliation.
So I have learnt some lessons. Who to be. Not what not to be or behave. What to believe in. Making the right choices in relationships. Always choosing compassion.
I lie here in this cool, quaint farmhouse in Mystic Connecticut, feeling the outdoors, seeing the mist and the sliver of a moon, hearing the crickets and frogs, loving the isolation... and knowing that my heart is warm and filled up. Thank you universe for allowing me to share my stories, through my music, lyrics, poems, writings, talks and gatherings. I learn 1000 times fold more than those who come hear me speak or sing. I am the student of life.
And to top it off, it was equally cool to have Newsweek come up and do a story on me today in this magical place called Mystic. I guess the karma does come around eventually... ;)

Friday, September 09, 2005

new york midnight express. Now is What.

on the street
in my head
on the tv
in the room.

i stand innocent.
it swims around me.
i live the silent movie.
midnight express.
sleeping in the bronx,
smelling deep history
race, creed, industrialized waste,
toxic to my system,
messy, grimy,
how do people live like this?
..fixing for a taste of home,
not going to come so easy
feeling queasy.
new york, new york, giant jungle
people fight to stay alive
dyin' inside but hungry like tigers
fast and furious they push
whoosh goes the train like
hunter and hunted,
subway speed and kids doing tricks street side.
do they know what's going on in the south?
nothing comes out of this boy's mouth but
"yeah, wanna buy my pet lizard
got no disease"
the dis-ease of our nation
is seen on these streets
exemplified thrice fold.
now what?
i am alone in my thought on this
how do i make it clear
without inciting fear.
while tears wash away in the floods of new orleans.
where do we all go from here?
fear is the one thing
i contemplate while i wait for my pizza slice
filled with cheese, grease and my god it's delicious,
down in alphabet city, with the sleaze and
cuban restaurants with melodic guitars and voices and drums
and beer and wine bars and young girls with tats
and black berets and striped socks.
sleeping on the street.
she sleeps. or dribbles not sure.
i eat. i look around and find i'm in hell
how ironic as i am in love with it all.
it drives my creative muse
and i refuse to be of it
but in it in any case.
alive and kicking i also am with it,loving it
performing in it, feeling it.
now what?
i find the keyboard and
feel the ivories at c-note,
a dive bar that
eases my mood.
i drink cheap beer.
magic of lower east side.
new york city has me by the hook, line and sinker
and i'm not fine with what i see,
the black concrete playgrounds,
and a city losing time.
no time, all the time, every time
people fast, forward
in your face.
..and hard truck sounds and taxi cabs that don't stop when you
put your hand up high and say "stop" i am crossing this god damn street.
"stop" with the cockroaches and the grit on my glass of water.
"stop" with the urine down on the L line
people live with this going to work and back
and they don't see this simple fact,
they live in tunnels on the way from here to there
tunnels under the roads, the labyrinth of codes.
"stop" the chatter inside my head of fear and 9/11 and clubs that don't pay
or leave it ambiguous like they don't know what an artist needs.
what does an artist need?
         the feeling of connection...
whispering my thoughts they know, they know what is really going on?
are we all so centrifugal to our own moment
our own journey?
was this book really created for me?
"go" with my heart, my pulse, the instinct to be alive, and enjoy this fast
the ploy, the entrancing feeling of living on the edge and feeling
history,.. on 42nd street.
where i stayed last year
in 5 star hell
and finally, finally
performed on broadway with a python at that.
new york city town hall.
i have done it.
now what?
how does it feel?
what's real to my heart my ambition to know know i have grabbed what i wanted to do
in '92, as i rollerbladed through these steamy streets with Backstage mag in my hands
and dreams in my heart,
and naivety
in my lungs and all i felt was fun and cold and hot
and all the stuff that makes an artist alive, wanting, yearning, begging for a stage
to be heard.
living on adrenalin and hard dreams, ambitions to fruition
i want to be heard.. new york city. do you hear me? do you feel me? do you want me?

BUT i have done it.
i have made it real
and lived broadway
and succeeded
for whatever that success means?  what does it really mean?
this constant fire in my belly that says
more more more
i turn to the burbs
big houses, large windows
fancy mercedes SUVs and i sit here on the couch
now what?
while... an old lady dies in a hospital and i'm left holding my friend's baby
so calm and soft
she smiles
with the innocence of mother nature
she calms my mind.
the innocence of children
reminds me that i must look at life through a child's eyes
at all times
to survive
my own ambition.

now what?
NOW. Now is WHAT.

i breathe in 
i submerge to dreamland to breathe some more
and feel the blue sky beating it's heat
reminding me of life and love and california and passion surging, coursing through me
. i live an extraordinary life.
give me another slice.

gilli moon . september 10. 2005. manhattan.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

kicking off the ordinary tour in an extra-turbulent world. - philadelphia sept 5 2005

My life as an artist. road warrior. communicator. sponge.

I sit in Montclair NJ resting, reading, writing. Feeling... Watching CNN.... crying. being just me, laughing. Having played a multitude of hats these last 4 days through tumultous times, I see my role as chameleon, as poet, as artist, educator and entrepreneur, as traveler, as lover, as child, as adult, as woman with a mission.... i am on my mission now. Making extraordinary changes in an ordinary way.

I've been in the studio for over a year and embarking on a road trip (which will be over a month's journey) is such a liberating feeling. I love seeing new sights and sounds, touching new hearts, and being touched. This is very invigorating.

Arriving in Philadelphia was like arriving to freedom. In my own personal way. I have been hibernating for so long, and now i am really happy to be out in the world, communicating once again, feeling the travel bug, the spirit of the journey, and roman sandles on my feet. There is much to do, say, hear, feel and share.

I just completed the first weekend of work: the Independent Music Conference in Philadelphia. We just left Philly last night having been there for 4 days.

It's hard to get all excited about a music conference when we are seeing such tragedy on CNN and any tv station about what is currently happening in New Orleans. But let me deviate from this for a moment as I recount the journey I have traveled these last few days that has left me ALSO inspired, motivated and rejuvenated, .. because where there is dark there is light and where there is tragedy there is hope.

The IMC conference has just finished and we have been fortunate enough, as Songsalive! team members, to be part of making this a huge success because we were involved in it to create change, be impactful, educate and inspire artists and i believe that we SUCCEEDED. It takes one person at a time to create change and music and the arts is a hugely impactful way to do that. I am blessed to be an artist and educator and I discovered such love, harmony and synergy amongst the artists who attended this conference. It has reminded me why I have chosen this path.

Toni Koch (Songsalive! artist coordinator/Warrior Girl Music promoter) and I arrived on Thurs evening and caught a cab from the airport into the Conference hotel - Sheraton Society Hill. First evening, a quick walk down South Street for a bite to eat, discover some interesting bars, one in particular had "live painting" to DJ music, which inspired my muse immediately. This city is filled with artistry, on the street, in the bars, on the walls, in my MIND.

Friday morning we got to work. We set up the Songsalive! booth,, with stacks of stuff, artist info, our organizational information, our banner flying proudly on the wall behind and various things to display and sell. There were several booths at the conference, including some partners we are involved with such as (Cd manufacturing). Toni organized 3 days of amazing Songsalive! Acoustic Roundabout performances, where we had songwriters perform acoustically in the main room, Hamilton Room, with grand piano. This brought a new light to the conference for this year because we were able to provide showcase opportunities for artists without having to leave the focus of the event. Normally, and still this year, showcases are around town in Philadelphia in the evenings only. We were able to offer a showcase environment daily, during the conference activities, and music industry folk came in to check out the talent. it was great.

We saw some great performances at Cavanaughs River Deck (on the river near the Ben Franklin bridge), and I performed there also. It was kind of the evening hub for the conference and a lot of fun! I had a blast performing this weekend. Every day I hopped on the piano and shared, like secrets, my new songs from the new album extraOrdinary life, and some old ones that felt like coming out of the bag.

I spoke on many music panels this year, focusing mainly on touring, promoting and getting out there as an indie artist. I also conducted my MPWR Workshop (path to artist empowerment) twice during the conference and i know from the feedback i received that this inspired those who attended to continue on their artist path with strength, gave them motivation and positivism. I believe in defining success on one's own terms, and enjoying the journey. That being artists in this era we need to also be smart business people, using the left and right brains. That we can use the internet to maximize our relationships building. Being at a conference, we all got to know each other well... it was a small conference and in my opinion this was way more effective than being a huge conference where no one truly gets to connect one on one. Other panels i spoke on included Women in Music and the Discourse panel, critiquing artists' demos.

Toni also spoke on panels, including merch, building revenue streams, street teaming and more. On the last day we conducted the Songsalive! Songcamp, which is really becoming one of our BEST programs. We had mentors to assist the full day Songcamp - Steven Memel (Hollywood's celebrated vocal and performance coach), Patti Wolf from radio, and Bill Pere, 14 album songwriter and president of the Connecticut Songwriters Association. The Songcamp started out with critiquing, like we do in a regular Songsalive! monthly workshop. We had about 12 songwriters from around the country: Philly, L.A, Texas, New York, even... New Orleans. One artist, Nabiyah, is this young spoken word / poet from Philly had never sung before. We allowed her to present a piece and she sung a little lullaby she wrote. She was softly spoken, but gazed at all of us with strength. Then, when it was our turn to provide feedback, she fell silent and began to weep. I softly spoke to her and realized that this beautiful soul was new at opening up her words to strangers. We gave her encouragement. she then turned to us and said she felt so wonderful to have the opportunity to sing, and speak. Others wept. It was very special.

After lunch we got into the cool part of the Songcamp - co-writing. I placed the artists in groups of 2 and 3 and gave them 1 hour to write a song. it was a huge challenge. And the groups were varied, with songwriters who didn't know each other, and who were from a varied background including geography, race, age and musical taste. By 3pm we had 5 new songs written, within a hour. And they were all fabulous! The artists thought the Songcamp was energizing and challenged them beyond anywhere they'd been on their own as writers. I felt, even in my first few days on the road, that this day made it ALL worthwhile and reminded me why Songsalive! exists. It all started with a workshop, in the round, sharing and writing songs, and here we are still today doing this, making an impact on a grand scale. for details on our songcamps.)

Other parts of our work here at the IMC was to promote our Songsalive! Cd Sampler 7, a few members who had partaken in the "Get Promoted" program ( for details). Plus we are promoting two new Songsalive! partners: Unisong - a fabulous songwriting competition we are presenting, and, a unique email fanlist service. Both are at We have bundles of postcards on these two partners and happy to send some to any chapter who wants some.... We also were selling the IndieBible on our booth, which is a fantastic resource of media and press to promote your music to. to get it online.

In summary, Songsalive! was an integral part in the success of the IMC conference this year. I'm very proud. We feel it's like having our own Expo but on the East Coast. Our booth was the hub for songwriters to hang and feel supported and promoted. I want everyone to try and come next September. It's worth it, it's educational, and very very powerful. to see what it's all about. We made connections and relationships with artists, songwriters and music business executives from all around the country.

Next stop on our tour, New York for our Songsalive! Showcase this Thursday Sat 8th @ C-Note for details. Then Connecticut for the associations meeting on 13th Sept where I will be talking, then the New England Music in Hartford CT on 17/18 Sept. My album launch on Wed 21st Sept at the Cutting Room NY. Then up to Boston to speak at the Berklee School of Music on Tues 27th Sept and Nemo Music Conference on 30th Sept and 1st October. and have all the details.

Our work for Songsalive! is a busy one this month. We are out and about on the East Coast being proactive, educating, building the name, recruiting members, conducing workshops, building the New York and Boston Chapters and doing what we are here to do..... providing opportunities of support and promotion for songwriters.

I do hope this little email was inspiring to you all in your lives this week as we go through hardship and struggle, with the devastation of New Orleans. We have many members from Louisiana. Our home page has a link at the bottom to lend donations to this current catastrophe.  My part right now is building consciousness and awareness about COMING TOGETHER as a global community in every way.... whether it's amongst us in songwriting, building relationships in the music business, making lifelong friends on the road, enjoyinfg the journey everyday in everything you do, feeling inspired by the little things that make impact, or... even building finances to help others. Songsalive! is doing that. As a 501 (c) (3) our mission is to educate and support. Go online and support New Orleans. Talk to your neighbor, give them a smile. WRITE A GREAT SONG TODAY.


Right now, I'm gearing up for a Manhattan show this Thursday, for gaining my strength again to go out into this world and be the warrior. I am truly blessed.

Thanks for reading


gilli moon

 Buy the new album "extraOrdinary life" at for ringtones and downloads

gilli moon

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