‘Why we joined the union’
Volume 116, No. 10October, 2016
I joined Local 802 because I have come to a point in my career where I’m not so youthfully self-centered anymore, and my focus has shifted to contemplating the kind of music community in which my colleagues and I work. I hope to become more aware of the problems we as musicians face in quality of life and work. Through the union, I believe I am getting better informed and equipped to contribute to positive change for all musicians. Aside from getting my recorded music out and about (finishing up a jazz album and a compilation of Croatian a cappella music for girls), I’m very focused on my most recent project of putting together a professional ensemble that will perform authentic Croatian music. It’s the biggest challenge I’ve ever put before myself, but also the most rewarding and most soulful world of music to be dealing with. My goal is to add another color and expression to the scene by creating a presence of a rare musical and cultural gem that’s been missing in and around NYC. My most favorite recent project was starting my publishing company. After going through a lot of co-producing and co-writing situations in New York where I put all my heart and soul and hard-earned music training into it (but in return got overlooked when it came to copyrights, credits and sometimes even basic respect), I realized I needed to change the way I work. So I started a company because I wanted to be able to do music with integrity and passion, and I wanted to contribute to maintaining a balance between “the art of music” and “the business of music.” I wouldn’t like to see a future in which the business side becomes an unchallenged priority and sucks out all the passion and love from playing. My music includes jazz, Balkan music, classical vocals, original compositions, arranging, leading bands, producing and publishing. I also consider myself an integrative sound and music practitioner and a performance wellness coach.