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Songs To Benefit Local Special Needs Children





If I Could Do More

The song "If I Could Do More" was an interesting track, it all started with a simple discussion in the parking lot of the Unity Church in Orlando with Lisa Firestone. Lisa and I have been friends for a while but were still learning about each other and I would occasionally head through her church where she is the Music Director on Holden Ave. here in Orlando, Florida. Lisa's a beautiful soul through and through, her songwritting is wonderful and her vocals just soar.

David Brown & Lisa Firestone at Eastern Sky Studio's

I had just come back from Nashville and the title track production with Karen Taylor-Good, a burned CD of the song in hand. That Sunday service I headed to Unity Church to get my dose of inspiration, after the service I was heading back to the car when Lisa and I met up. I explained what I was putting together by offering the basic story of what it is like to have children that are special needs, and just how challenging it can be at times. She listened carefully, asking a few questions and offered her heart to the project in any way she could. She left with the knowledge that I was looking for a song that would lift you up (positive) but would clearly connect emotionally with a caregiver.

A few days later I received a call from Lisa saying I should check my email, as that she had just roughed a song in her closet studio (some of the best songs come from a small closet I find, lol). I headed to my email and found the track. Just a simple vocal and piano accompaniment, her sweet voice expressed a simple message. The lyrics were awesome, I could hear the sensitive tone needed to built up and thus in my head I could hear the beginning of a ballad that would be incredible.

I had a number of tracks I was working on, but this one was going to go into production in Orlando when I was toward the end of the album creation. Lisa and I agreed that David Brown's Eastern Sky Studio up the road here in Orlando, FL., the best part about this was that it was a common ground with a fantastic setup! David's keen ear was a huge help with the engineering/production and is a MUST USE place to record if your recording! We hired a couple of musicians to record the song and spent the day recording, I had the song in my head being a ballad but with a power below it and I think that Lisa had the theme of a simple almost jazz tone to it. We discussed it a bit, learned and went forward finalizing the key elements. I felt it required another day in the studio with Lisa to get just the right vocals from her, and boy did she deliver.

After comping the various versions of Lisa's vocals we were able to come up with a single run of it that worked well. She always laughed that she didn't have the voice of a Celine Dion, but in my head she was a beautiful voice and did an amazing run of it. The only missing part was the need for a solid guitarist behind the song and little more sythesizer to build the energy within the lyrics. Chris Graffagnino came to mind, as that he was the guitarist for the title track "the life that's chosen me" and knew the style I would want quickly.Jason Garner & Chris Graffagnino

I had the bass part overlayed by Freebo, an old friend whom I had the highest regard for from his work with Bonnie Raitt and many other musicians. Between his playing, the input of a few small elements, out came this wonderful song. Lisa always knew the title of the song, and I knew that the message would be easy to understand by anyone who was a caregiver. The video was created by Lynda Graham, a friend through an online radio station called SeeQ Radio that is not online presently. It captures a real families interaction with they're childs illness. The majority of images are of a friend's Father and Son in a Boston Hospital and his Son's battle there.

I hope the song brings comfort to many, it certainly has created a strong outpouring of interest and certainly is a sensitive way of expressing just how important caregivers are to our society.


IF I COULD DO MORE by LISA FIRESTONE from Lynda Graham on Vimeo.


Trying To Get Through To You

Talk about a challenging song, being open to the idea but ultimately having been concerned over the track I felt that this song was the most unique in it's experience. But much like a child you can't just throw it away when it fights baCBC Studios Toronto - Studio 212 December 28, 2008ck. I was putting together the album "The Life That's Chosen Me" and this was one of those tracks that just showed up for the gig.
Victor Crowl and Michael Moon, friends of mine from Toronto had simply presented a demo to me that really was from they're heart. Michael (afflicted with autism) had never collaborated with anyone musically he just was working at his own speed and interests and this really took him away from his comfort level but with Victor being an open minded learner and learning daily more and more about Autism it was a very interesting collaboration.
I liked the fact that the song had a real feel through the lyrics but the melody was "unique" to say the least. I asked for them to recut it with a few changes lyrically as that it was a bit angry towards Teachers (which I understand why through my older son Kyle is a reality in his Autistic world). I loved the simple view of the world and didn't change anything after that first verse ending.
Cheryl, my Wife never let me drop the song.. even on the brink of frustration and thus I flew to Toronto to help with some of the production in Dec 2008. This would prove to be one of the toughest assignments around (but I'll explain that on another overview of the song's history).
Randy Grossman


The Life That's Chosen Me

Daily I receive comments about the song that Karen Taylor-Good and Lisa Aschmann wrote for the last album we did called "The Life That's Chosen Me". Sometimes they're very hard to read but ultimately it's a great testament to the wonderful work that was put into this song and album.

Hearing of the various "challenges" out there that caregivers are going through makes me realize that it was all a great adventure!
HwH Records


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