"Hello, it's me" Adele (Hello) 

A couple of weeks ago I celebrated my Sweet Sixteen in Nashville with my three best friends. I had so much fun sharing “my" city with them. We went to all my favorite restaurants, did a little shopping in Hillsboro Village, heard some great music at the Listening Room Cafe, and - the highlight of the trip - saw Adele in concert!! She was phenomenal! I’ll never forget this amazing weekend! Best birthday ever!!

“We are too busy dancing to get knocked off our feet” Taylor Swift (New Romantics) 

 

Taylor Swift. 1989 Tour. MetLife Stadium. Last night. Best concert EVER! 

I’ve been looking forward to this concert for a long time now. Not just since October when the 1989 album was released but since I last saw her at MetLife Stadium for the Red Tour in July 2013. THAT is how amazing Taylor Swift is in concert! Last night, she had the sold out crowd of 60,000 dancing from the very first chords of Welcome To New York. She played for nearly two and a half hours and, between songs, she talked with her fans about the kind of things you talk about with a best friend . . . things like heartbreak and the risk of comparing yourself to others on Instagram. 

Taylor’s ability to make every fan in the stadium feel like she was talking directly to them is what has allowed her to make the transition from country to pop so easily. Her fans are her friends and support her whatever the genre. And she shows her appreciation for those fans in so many ways. Last night, she had a guest performance by Nick Jonas and her supermodel friends joined her on the catwalk before Style, which was so much fun to see. She played all the songs from the 1989 album, revamped some old favorites, and even included an acoustic rendition of You Belong With Me that I absolutely LOVED!  It was an amazing night and I am so lucky I got to see her. Best night ever!

 

“Ein Prosit Der Gemütlichkeit” Traditional German Song  

“A toast to friendship and good times” describes my life perfectly right now.  After finals, we took a family vacation to Salzburg and Munich, where this Bavarian oompah band played at the Hofbräuhaus. We hiked and biked in the Alps, visited crazy King Ludwig’s Neuschwanstein Castle, and ate some amazing food! We got back yesterday, just in time for my best friend’s Sweet Sixteen party this weekend. I can’t wait to get dressed up for a night out in NYC!  Good times with family and friends really are what matter most!

“There’s only one place they call me one of their own.” Bon Jovi (Who Says You Can’t Go Home) 

So I’m pretty excited because last night I got to be the featured under-21 artist at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, NJ! The Wonder Bar is such an iconic venue here…I still can’t believe I actually got to play it. It was also kind of a big deal for me because it was my first time performing my own songs in my home state! I’m really excited to start performing more in my own area. I feel like where someone is from is such a big part of who they are, and writing songs is such a big part of who I am…so it’s very cool to be able to share something that’s so important to me with my own community. I’m performing on August 10th at Jamian’s in Red Bank, NJ (79 Monmouth Street) and would love to see you there! I hope you can make it!

 

"Going back to Nashville, thinking about the whole thing." David Mead (Nashville) 

I've been back in New Jersey for less than a week and I already miss Nashville! Nashville is so cool because every single person there is really supportive, not to mention crazy talented. I had even more fun than I did last time, if that's possible! I took an audio engineering class at Blackbird Studio, which was absolutely one of the best experiences of my 13 years of life.  I also went to the Grand Ole Opry and took a backstage tour . . . there's seriously a glitter couch back there.  I watched a bunch of really cool people perform their own songs at the Belcourt Taps, The Listening Room, 3rd & Lindsley, and The Bluebird Cafe and even performed some of my own songs at Cafe Coco. I wouldn't trade those experiences for anything. I can't wait to go back again to see what else Nashville has in store for me! 

“Songwriters write songs, but they really belong to the listener.” Jimmy Buffett 

I spent today in the studio recording a song I wrote back in February called “Which Story Is You”.  I’m so excited to finally share it with all of you! A shout out to Erik and Dylan at Lakehouse Recording Studios in Asbury Park.  You guys are awesome!  Please check out my new song and let me know what you think.  I hope you all have as much fun listening to it as I did writing and recording it! Enjoy!! 

“I said remember this moment, in the back of my mind.” Taylor Swift (Long Live) 

Last week was absolutely insane, with our spring concert followed by the annual Music in the Parks competition held in Allentown, PA. It’s the same every May, with what I call “Crazy Music Week” marking the end of the school year, but this year it also brings about something else: the end of middle school. On Tuesday, I was proud to receive the Jr. Tri-M Music Honor Society’s Master Musician award for the second year in a row. I also won Outstanding Accompanist at Music in the Parks for the THIRD straight year. How crazy is THAT? I was happy and shocked and couldn’t stop laughing. BUT as great as it was to get those awards, what I’ll remember most are all of the fun times I’ve had making music with my friends. I will never, ever forget all the crazy things that happened in middle school and I’m so excited to see what high school brings!