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BRAVER


~ Two Steps From Hell
Music by Lisa Miguez



Hawkish 2.0
Released March 9, 2018


Download my music from these digital music stores:


iTunes    ||    Google Play    ||    CDBaby


Listen to my album right here via SoundCloud:
(TRACK ORDER: Mother Earth, Freedom, Hawkish, Flight, Wings, Look Up)



Or via CDBaby:
(TRACK ORDER: Mother Earth, Freedom, Look Up, Hawkish, Flight, Wings)

*Refresh or reload the page if the CDBaby player doesn’t appear properly*



Follow me


@grafxbylisa   #grafxbylisa   #Hawkish20





         
Copyright © 2017-2018 Lisa Miguez
100% Canadian

or whatever I feel like writing










FOLLOW ME

APRIL 28, 2018



What I’ve learned...

It’s not at all easy to find your way through the plethora of posts on social media. Nor is it as simple as posting something relevant to your music, art or whatever it is you do and expecting likes and followers to swarm your post (unless of course you are a celebrity). I will focus mostly on Instagram. Since I started using it near the end of March this year, every day has brought forth either disappointments or wonderful feedback. Most of either was due to luck or lack of understanding - moreso the latter.

I pay attention to what others post, both in the way of content (photo/video/audio) and its presentation and what they say about it. I can’t say it enough, if you’re just getting started there, you need to use smart #hashtags, hashtags that are both relevant to whatcha want people to look at and what will keep people coming back. And this is what else I’ve learned...

Post often. If you can, post at least one thing every day - on Instagram and Twitter, and whatever other social media outlet you use. Some days I post two things but it is becoming more challenging to do that since I am now trying to keep my streak of at least 3 individual posts to make the “bigger picture” appear on my profile page. Today was the most I have ever posted on Instagram. The first post(s) was a group of 8 images and 1 video (9 posts total) to promote my album Hawkish 2.0. The second post(s) was a group of 3 images showing a rather blurry but relevant photo I took today of a Swainson’s Hawk - so excited that they are back! And the last post(s) was a group of 6 images showing some pictures I took of a Robin today. Total = 18 individual posts.

Post something other than. Yes, I am a fan of hawks, raptors, robins and birds in general... and animals (RIP that rabbit that got run over on our street today though). Hawks are what started me on my musical journey but I am often sidetracked by other birds when they are around too. Yes, I post a lot of pictures/video of my hawk friends - but that is all pertinent to promoting my music - have to do that. I am also planning to post pictures of some of the artwork I have done as well as other random things, just to stay relevant. Some of the top bloggers/tweeters/IG’ers all say the same thing - let people know you are more than, for example, just a musician. This also applies to your website if you have one too.

Speaking of my website... I want it to be as easy as possible for anyone to visit, first and foremost - I read something recently about not making your website visitors have to think. Secondly, I want it to be relevant. I want people to read my news feed but I’m finding it tricky to gain those readers without actually having an actual blog that they can engage with, comment on, etc. I need my website for several reasons: it is the main destination for people to go to learn about my music, listen to my music, link to digital stores to buy my music, watch my videos, learn about me and the process of making Hawkish 2.0, and find the links to my social media. I can’t do everything on Instagram - I can provide so much more on my website... it will be an ever-changing place and when I have the time to do it, more interactive than ever.

A quick note about Twitter... I’m almost ready to throw in the towel there. I’ve posted a few things over the last couple of weeks, without one like other than from a friend of mine on a couple. I will get a new random follower here and there when I haven’t posted anything in a few days - not sure how that happens but I’ll take it. For now, I will keep it open and try to post something a little more frequently. My Twitter feed is also on the desktop version of my website. I’d like to add Instagram but I honestly don’t know where I would put it... at the moment anyway.

Last thoughts for today... I should be using this news feed to promote my music and talk about it, right? If you’ve read this far, you should have by now at least had an opportunity to listen to my music. I have mentioned that I am in fact working on a new song. It’s a little more to what I want my sound to be... so far only through about 30 seconds... really want to focus on that... more songs, another album... stay tuned.



APRIL 24, 2018



When music is everything

Oh I’m having so much fun on Instagram lately. If you follow me there (I hope you do!), you will know I’m focusing on the “big picture” with my posts lately - a series of smaller pictures that show the bigger picture when you visit my profile page. I realize it’s not a new thing but I’m figuring out how best to use the gimmick to garner new likes and follows. I think it’s working, but I’m not 100% sure some of the likes are from those who have seen the “big picture” or not. Smarter hashtags are definitely working.

Today’s subject is “when music is everything”. For me, it is everything I am doing to network, share and promote not only my own music but also that of other local and Canadian musicians. You may have heard me say it before: I’m spending a lot of time on social media to do just that. Ergo, music is everything I am doing: social media, my website... and gosh, even working on new music... that last bit takes the most time.

I have been using the hashtags #DoWhatYouLove and #LoveWhatYouDo consistently in the last week or so. Let’s face it, I do love this whole music thing that I’m doing (when I can give the time to do it). And no doubt, for every other musician, band, artist, songwriter, singer... it is the same for them. It is a passion. For some, it is their full time job. For others, like me, while it has not yet earned me the respect of thousands of followers, nor the money to show for it, it is definitely something I will continue to do, if for nothing else, for the love of it.

Don’t forget that you can contact me anytime on Instagram or Twitter and here on my website on the “connect” page. I look forward to hearing from you!



APRIL 17, 2018



Newly Inspired

It’s been a good week or so in life (despite the persistent winter) and on social media. I’m appreciating more and more the likes and new followers I’ve been getting, on Instagram mostly, some of whom are up and coming and some are established award winning singers/composers/bands. I’m both thrilled and humbled by their simple actions of pressing like or follow. And I’m pleased to say, I’m very much enjoying their music as well.

I was recently chatting with someone about something off topic and I threw (not really) a business card at him to change the subject. A few minutes later he came back to tell me that he had been listening to my music and it reminded him of some musicians called Two Steps From Hell. I was taken aback at first because I thought he said “two-step”, as in the dance - it’s not country music, I said. He clarified that by telling me they were very prominent composers who make music for movies, video games, etc., and that I should check them out.

OMG. If you have not heard of Two Steps From Hell (aka tsfh), you have very likely heard their music if you watch movies at all. I am just beside myself - this is exactly the type of music I love to listen to. Epic. Soundtracks with an orchestral and rock mix. Just wonderful. I was up very late last night/this morning and created a new YouTube playlist of their music, you can find it here: Two Steps From Hell. Check it out, you might just like it... and I will be adding to the playlist when I get time to listen to more. And FYI, I don’t believe my music is comparable to that of these astoundingly talented musicians but I do believe I have finally found the genre (or at least a sub-genre) that I can label my music as (I have struggled with this bit from the start). I am aspiring to make more and better music in the days, weeks, months and years to come. A new song is already in progress...

”Music Makes You Braver”
~~Two Steps From Hell~~

I am also working on a playlist of some of the great Canadian talent I have had the good fortune to listen to, just by being on Instagram: Music to Follow



APRIL 12, 2018



Where to now...

I’ve been spending a lot of time on social media lately - mostly Instagram - I think a lot more people are there looking for something new to look at and listen to and they’re finding me. Funny enough, I’m realizing I’m getting lost in my own Twitter feed - whenever I tweet something, I have to scroll a long way to find my tweets - that’s what happens when you follow a lot of people I guess.

What I really need to do is get back to making some new music, without giving up promoting my current music - a delicate balance. Not only that, I have a “day” job (and life) that really limits my time and how much energy I can pour into all of this. While I’m getting likes and a few followers, mostly on Instagram, some on Twitter, I’m still figuring out the dynamics of self-promotion and getting folks to go further than a like, share or follow... and getting the right followers.

I almost feel like I’m posting the same thing all the time. Sometimes changing up the photo/video but almost always reposting the same couple of songs - ‘cause that’s all I have at the moment. And as always, trying new hashtags to reach a new audience. Happily, I’m finally getting likes and followers from Canada - fellow creators/musicians/artists.

One more thing... am I doing this for a career change? Just for fun? For one thing, I’m doing this because I need to - too many times I have given up when a project seems to be going nowhere. I need to do this because this time I believe in what I have created and I think there are listeners, supporters and potential buyers that have yet to be found - can’t find them if I give up. I love what I’m doing and if it turns into something more, all the better - do what you love to do.



APRIL 8, 2018



Giving back...

Many of you may by now know of the tragic loss of life of members of the #HumboldtBroncos hockey team in Saskatchewan. I have been touched by this heart wrenching story in a way I am unfamiliar with. Every news cast, social media posts and other things that I see and read about it literally breaks my heart and chokes me up. I cannot begin to fathom what those families, the remaining team members and staff, and the community must be going through.

At the same time, I feel a real unity happening here. All over Canada (and beyond), condolences and donations are pouring in to support the families and team during this heartbreaking time. I have already personally made a donation to the gofundme page that was set up - at last check, they are less than $100,000 away from reaching their $4million goal - in one day!

Even so, I feel like I could do more. So I decided as a way to support the fundraising further, I have offered to donate %100 of the earnings from the sale of my music from April 8 to April 15, 2018. Maybe it will help me in sales, but that’s not why I’m doing this one time thing. I feel I have this wonderful tool available to me that I can use to help someone else. At least it’s worth a try!

I’m not asking you to buy my music to make me feel good. I’m asking you to buy my music if you like it of course, but for one week, any sales of music only benefits those directly affected by the tragedy, and you can feel good about being a part of that. As I’ve said, I’m a nobody in the music world at the moment, and you may not even like the music I make - all you really have is the word of a stranger. If you’re concerned about the buying process - I don’t sell anything directly on my website. You can only buy my music from trusted and secure sources: iTunes, GooglePlay and CDBaby - if you see it somewhere else, don’t buy it! It is also available to listen to on SoundCloud, with links to buy my album on iTunes, GooglePlay and CDBaby.

One last note about earnings... If you pay $6 (CDN) for my album, I receive $5.45+/- in earnings - that latter is the amount I will donate to the gofundme page - %100 of it. I will take screenshots or something to show the totals. I have everything to risk by doing this - all of the work I have done thus far in making and promoting my music will be for naught if I don’t follow through with this.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!



APRIL 7, 2018



More about social media...

As you may have read in my earlier posts, I gave up on managing the page on Facebook dedicated to the Hawkish 2.0 project. Today I did a little housekeeping by replacing both my profile picture and cover photo, and removing some irrelevant posts. Too bad that I invested so much energy into getting that page up and running - 2 weeks of my life that I will never get back. Good thing I was doing other things!

One thing I did do a couple of years back was follow my rock idol, Pat Benatar, on Facebook. It was fun to see what tours she’s (still) doing and see glimpses into her family life via her and husband/music partner Neil Giraldo’s posts of their daughter’s wedding and both daughters’ birthdays.

Speaking of the Giraldo daughters, I’ve been half-following Pat and Neil’s youngest daughter Hana Giraldo on Instagram and YouTube. She’s an aspiring singer and actress. Though a couple of her songs are a little on the raunchy side for me, her voice has some of the traits of her mom’s, and I’m somewhat attracted to that.

And then there were updates...

I added my Twitter feed to my website - if you are reading this on a computer or tablet, you will see it on the left side of the screen. If you don’t, please let me know via the connect page here. I haven’t yet added it to the mobile version of my site - there’s just not enough real estate to fit it comfortably there.

The last couple of days I’ve been posting screen recordings of a couple of my songs playing in GarageBand on my iPad Pro. Almost instantly I get likes and even a couple of follows, all without using #SoundCloud! At this moment, I now have 30 followers on Instagram (I started with 12 Facebook followers - before I ever even used Instagram!) and 16 followers on Twitter (I started with zero). I’m happy to finally have a couple of Canadian top dogs following me on Twitter. In 2-3 weeks, I’m doing OK so far. I’m getting wise to what’s hot and what’s not - both in the type of media posted and hashtags. A long way to go yet, but I’m on it.



APRIL 6, 2018



ABOUT MY MUSIC

One thing I’ve noticed when I’ve posted something on Instagram or Twitter in particular, is that the likes I get are from other music makers, more often than not, of the rapper genre. While I respect every artist in every genre (to each their own), my music is not rap or hip-hop or similar. My music is just that - music, no singing (I have no interest, nor am I at all in tune
with a singing voice). Further to that, I consider the genre of my music to be more along a pop/instrumental, even orchestral vibe. I admit that I had a hard time choosing the genre(s) since on every site or venue, the lists to choose from were different on every one, and on almost every one I had to settle on something other. This is proving to be more of a challenge moving forward.

Another thing of course, when I post something, I’m usually using the hashtag #SoundCloud which gets likes and sometimes shares within a few minutes of posting. Naturally, music and business promoters tend to like and follow. Some I follow back, while others I’m holding off on for now. I’m still trying to find the best hashtag(s) to use as an alternative to #SoundCloud.

UPDATES

If you don’t see anything new here, check my Twitter or Instagram feed, or Google+ or my YouTube channel. I am adding something new every day, somewhere.



APRIL 2, 2018



It’s a little slow going but I’m finding my way around Google+ and finally getting some likes and followers. Likewise, Instagram is a superstar at getting instant likes and followers - smart hashtag strategies are at last bringing things to fruition. There have been moments where I’ve been wanting to stop this silly business of promoting my music and myself but then I think
of... "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams and live the life you have imagined" - not sure the author but a friend of mine just sent that to me as a gentle reminder to not let things stop you from doing that which is in your heart. That is why I started this, isn’t it? I felt so deep in my soul that no matter the lack of interest or support from those in my immediate circle (aside from an important one or two), I believed (and believe) there is still something more for me on this journey.

If you are reading this, you are either interested in this adventure I am on, or just like reading... or something else. Whichever the case, I hope to keep you engaged here and throughout my network of social media - never in a million years did I think I would participate in such a range of self-promotion and sharing. I’ve had to show just a little more of myself every day and I must say it is daunting yet at the same time somewhat liberating.

And just FYI - I will be taking down the Facebook page that I dedicated to this project on Sunday, April 8, 2018. Not like it will matter - Facebook doesn’t matter anymore.



MARCH 31, 2018



In an effort to stay ahead of the game, I have now also signed up on Google+. At the moment, all I have is my profile and I started a collection. Once again something new to learn, but this is a necessary step before I step away from Facebook completely - that is my ultimate goal. I won’t bore you too much with the sad stats from my
page on Facebook but I will say that had I not promoted one post, I would have had zero interaction, despite my commitment to updating something (SoundCloud release, photos, a video, etc.) at least once a day there... WTH? I’m so over it.

So, yeah, Google+. Are you with me?

And don’t forget to look me up on Twitter, SoundCloud, YouTube and Instagram (still not sure about that one either but at least I get a nod here and there) - links at the bottom of the page.



MARCH 28, 2018



Hashtags...

OK so I’m a little late to the game but I’m finally getting it! Sure, we’ve all seen them: #hashtagThis #hashtagThat but what do they do? My first time on Twitter I used #grafxbylisa ‘cause well, that’s me and everything to do with my website and almost every other social network I am involved with: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook (ugh) and I try to incorporate it into
everything else: SoundCloud, YouTube, etc.

In the last few days I had been surprised to get likes on Twitter after using #SoundCloud as a calling card. Today I edited a day or two old post on Instagram (still trying to get the hang of that one) by adding #grafxbylisa and #SoundCloud. I kid you not, within 10 minutes I had received a like on it. I get that trending news like Lady Gaga’s birthday is going to far surpass anything I could come up with... oh wait, just got another like from Instagram (insert wide-eyed emoji here)...

Use the strong, trending hashtags and they will come! Exposure. They will like it or ignore it. If they like it, they may go further: my website, SoundCloud, etc., and that’s OK.

If you followed a hashtag to find my website, THANK-YOU! If you enjoy your visit here, let me know via the connect page, and yes do pass it on. If you don’t care for what you see here, that’s OK too but at least I tried :-)



MARCH 27, 2018



It’s been a disappointing couple of weeks on Facebook. After gathering a whopping 13 followers to my page in the first few days, it seemed like everything came to a grinding halt. Only my sister was sharing/liking, even when I was posting new links or updates to my website or photos or even a video - “post photos and videos to get more likes, comments
and shares”, Facebook said. I did everything right but I obviously have the wrong dynamic of followers to do that for me, and the wrong platform. I found it to be just as ineffective sharing to my personal timeline (being as they are the friends following me on my music page). And I did what maybe I shouldn’t have done given Facebook’s current bad press - I paid for advertising - not a lot, but at that moment I was kinda desperate for more likes, shares and followers.

I gotta tell ya, had I realized this 2 weeks ago, I would first of all never paid for advertising on Facebook. And maybe I wouldn’t have spent so much energy trying to post a new update at least once a day there just to show that I’m active and serious about things. And here’s a big part of why... I’m also on Twitter. In almost every article I read about promoting yourself, Twitter is at the top of the list. Now combine that with signing up with #SoundCloud 2 days ago - more activity in 2 days on both than 1 week of paid advertising on Facebook. Not doing the latter anymore.

Here’s how effective Twitter is... just while writing this note... in the last hour since I posted the link on Twitter to my profile page on SoundCloud, I got 2 likes. And since following 2 artists on SoundCloud (who followed me within the first 24 hours of posting my music), I got another follower. What does that tell ya?

I won’t be focusing so much on updating my Facebook page now - funny that I posted the same link an hour ago there, not one bite. The most up to date info will be found here on my website or Twitter... and SoundCloud once I figure out the best way to do that too.



MARCH 26, 2018



Even before the release of my album but moreso in the last week or so, I’d been researching how best to get the word out about my music - with as little or no cost if possible. Almost every day I stumble upon several “best ways to...” lists and promotion recommendations. I stumbled upon a post yesterday that got me wondering about
SoundCloud and Spotify. I had had my doubts about a streaming venue from the start of this project (mostly because I didn’t really understand how it worked) but I soon realized that if I really wanted my music discovered and listened to, this just might be the best way. After some research I decided to sign up with SoundCloud.

Thanks to my experience of registering with CDBaby for my distribution, signing up with SoundCloud was easy enough. I liked that I could actually create “albums” and playlists with the songs in a different order. I had noticed on my CDBaby music player stats that most people were just playing the first song on the album (Look Up) and possibly the second (Flight) - much to my dismay, they weren’t getting to the “good” songs at the end: Mother Earth and Freedom - which may explain a lack of playthrough on the Hawkish 2.0 video also. These songs afterall, were really what inspired me to take this great leap with Hawkish 2.0. This revelation of missing out prompted me to encourage people on my Facebook page and here on my website to: Give Mother Earth and Freedom a chance.



MARCH 9, 2018



A big day in my humble life. On this day, I did something I never really thought I would do - I released my music to the world. Funny in a way, I feel like all the energy I have put into introducing Hawkish 2.0 to the public has not been spent in vain. In fact, even knowing that I am an amateur in almost every aspect of the project - the music, the art, the website and promoting my music - it is something that have committed to 100%. I have no idea what the future holds but I am in this for the long haul.







YOUR PRIVACY
I don’t sell anything on grafxbylisa.com. I don’t collect private information such as credit card numbers, user names and passwords. And I really don’t need to know your birthday or the name of your first born - so please don’t send that information to me. The external links I provide for you to buy my music (CDBaby, iTunes and Google Play) are from trusted and secure sites. Any other external links here (such as to software and apps that I use) are provided for information only.

I am not responsible for how you use the content or any issues at all related to any external links I have provided on my website. Always look for the “https://” prefix on any website you visit for the peace of mind knowing that it is secure.

CONTACT ME
The contact form on the connect page on my website is routed through my WordPress account. I do update WordPress security as the updates become available. Alternatively, you may instead contact me via:

... Twitter: @grafxbylisa

... my profile page on SoundCloud

... message me on Instagram

And please do share any and all of the above and my website:
grafxbylisa.com/music

THANK YOU!



“Look Up” was the first song I composed for the album. It was also the first song used in the remake Hawkish 2.0 video.


“Flight” was originally intended to be a “filler” song to take up a little less than 2 minutes of video time.


“Wings” was also a filler. It’s placed in the Hawkish 2.0 video where the shaky zoom in & out of the hawk in the tree starts.


“Hawkish” was the second song I composed for the album, starting as an experimental acoustic guitar rhythm - resulting in a guitar/piano mix.


“Mother Earth” was the most fun to compose - upbeat and whimsical. It was originally the last song in the Hawkish 2.0 video.


“Freedom” was the last song I composed for the album. It became the signature song for the Hawkish 2.0 project.
What kind of music do I like? Where do I draw my inspiration from? Who is my favourite artist / singer / band? When did I realize life is too short? Why do I spend so much time updating my website and social media status? How old am I?

WHAT: Classic rock, cinematic soundtracks, orchestra / classical, 80’s & 90’s top 40, disco, the odd country song

WHERE: Nature mostly. The Hawkish 2.0 project was entirely inspired by an encounter with Nature’s creatures.

WHO: Anyone who knows me, knows who I have been a fan of for over 35 years - Pat Benatar.

WHEN: When I started this project, I realized I needed to do things I had always dreamed of doing but never did.

WHY: To share. To promote. To network. To do the things I always dreamed of doing - no matter the outcome.

HOW: Younger than Pat Benatar, older than Lady Gaga. (are you googling them now?)