Song Review

Raymond Hayden ~ “We Can Make It” ~ (Artist Collaboration)

today07/11/2021 177

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Susan Varnes-Newland MUSIC REVIEW by Susan Varnes-Newland (Guest blogger from Grieve The Astronaut) ~ ~

"We Can Make It"

(Raymond Hayden - Single release - artist collaboration)

Musicians have always showed up to create support for others, during times of celebration or times of grief. Whenever there is a crisis, musicians join together to create public awareness fundraisers. In our local communities, they perform at charitable functions. They always show up FOR US.

“WE CAN MAKE IT“ is a song FROM musicians, FOR musicians and the music community. A collaborative effort, birthed from the creative souls who have been hurting in silence during 2020. Physically separated from receiving the support and healing they need. Musicians have ALWAYS been there to support us through our hard times. But, who has been there for THEM during the trying challenges of 2020? I can’t think of an area of more damaged careers, than those who are involved in the creation of live music.

I’m writing as a music fan, who has become a friend. I’ve sat through the creative dreams process , and seen the months of hard work that went into them. And then watched the dreams dissolve. Witnessed the tears of frustration when the last hopeful show gets canceled. Listened to the stories of financial devastation from businesses that aren’t allowed to open and operate. Live music isn’t just about the musicians. It’s about the lighting and sound engineers. The camera operators. Recording studios. The booking agents and managers. The venue owners. The independent merchandise distributors. And the ripple effect goes on and on.

I’ve come to view Tacoma WA artist Raymond Hayden, as the beating heart of the PNW local musician community. He has the natural gift of joining and connecting people together. “WE CAN MAKE IT TOGETHER” is a shining example of his gift.

It was a mere week, from his Vision, to the recorded Creation. Involving 11 music artists from various genres and backgrounds. They worked independently to create a musical message that fit together perfectly in the end.

My initial thought was “Oh wow! This is the PNW version of the 1984 Band Aid collaboration “Do They Know It’s Christmas “. Even though, they were representing various genres, it all blended beautifully. I found it fascinating how well the lyrics flowed together. As if they they worked together in a room, rather than separate and independently. A true message was formed, with powerful words.

As a personal friend, these are the lyrics that really hit home from the first time I listened.

Oh, I need to be close, we’re so far apart When the distance grows, and you’re not in my arms Just know….you’re always in my heart

Last month, Cirke Cherockee and Jessica Lynne Witty were up at my ski condo, filming Cirke’s new Christmas music video. When I first heard it, I started crying. It was so beautiful, and I’ve missed the healing from live music. Jessica actually held me in her arms for a bit. And said, that it was a poignant reminder, that her work as a musician WAS important. The inability to see their audiences definitely has an impact on their perception of the importance of their craft.

All of the lyrics of this song are important. The instrumental performances are important. The recording and mixing is important. Go listen for yourself and see what hits home for you,. And make sure and let the musicians know afterwards.

And this is my personal message to all musicians, and also to those involved in the music industry: YOU ARE IMPORTANT YOUR WORK IS IMPORTANT WE MISS YOU DESPERATELY YOU ARE NOT ALONE

To quote a meme I read last week “ The greatest healing will take place, when live music comes back.”

Start looking for a Superhero Cape to wear. That’s how we’re going to see you in the ( hopefully ) near future!



Raymond Hayden Jessica Lynne Witty Cirke Wanz Kitt Bender Lyle Ronglien George Varghese Anthony Ciarochi Paul Sawtelle Jeff Eason Sean Van Dommelen



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