Jan 022012
 

Meet Shirley Levi, an inspired and inspiring artist that doesn’t let anything stand in her way. Humanitarian, Entrepreneur, Activist, and Musical Maverick are all apt titles but in the opinion of Your Girl in Music, Dreamer perhaps suits her best.  Her epic (think Beowulf) journey as she followed her hearts path is the stuff of legend. Part 1 of our 3-part interview starts now.

Shirley-Levi-Recording-in-Tel-Aviv

Shirley Levi Recording in Tel Aviv – credit Shirley Levi

Tell me about your childhood in Iran and your journey to the US.

Having been born in Iran, I was born into darkness and have been desperately & urgently searching for the light ever since. It’s weird cuz as I’m thinkin’ about my answer I’m remembering so much that I haven’t thought about in so long. In some ways I remember it like it happened yesterday. In other ways it feels totally unreal, like it was a different person’s life. It felt dark and scary. What stood out most was my family having to be separated. I was born into this total anxiety ridden situation that was creating major turmoil in our lives. The Muslims, Christians & really everyone, were frightened, so imagine how being Jewish in Iran posed an even more serious threat to us. My mom is originally Israeli & moved to Iran after marrying my dad, who is an Iranian Jew. The revolution devastated everyone around me. I didn’t even know what to make of it all till I grew up and understood politics and the situation I was born into. I had barely even learned Farsi and before I knew it we were trying to escape the country. I remember watching TV in Iran and begging my mom to take me to America. I was in luv with the country of entertainment and freedom. Next thing I know we are in the US and I’m being perceived as being the country’s enemy but I couldn’t even understand what I had done wrong! We had just escaped from major chaos. My family felt humiliation for having to escape a country that they thought was their home. Can u imagine having to escape America to find freedom somewhere else?! When we finally arrived to the land of the free I thought Disneyland & Sesame Street were gonna be greeting me. I truly thought that now that we had run away from the bad guys that the good guys in America would know and embrace us, but once I was here nobody would talk to me or even sit next to me at school. Most of the teachers would watch and ignore the abuse and/or would be participants in it. I’d rather not go into all the details cuz there was just way too much of it. The teachers made it very difficult for me to learn anything especially music! I got ridiculed every time I would join in guitar class. Even though I came into the class way later than everyone else, because I was so eager to learn my truest luv, which was guitar, I progressed faster than anyone in that class. Still, I had to drop out after a few short weeks because my teacher’s discrimination became too much to handle as a kid. I couldn’t understand why I was being teased for my skin being darker. I was so ashamed of myself and didn’t know why. I was ashamed of someone I hadn’t even gotten to know yet. I was beyond terrified of the country I came from and so ecstatic to be in the country I admired so deeply yet I was being tortured and blamed for the political crisis of the time. It was a really really really lonely childhood. Nobody wanted to have anything to do with me. I was all alone. My oldest sister, whom I was closest to, hadn’t arrive to the US yet which made me feel even more alone. On the other hand, as I look back in retrospect, all this torment & loneliness was the most empowering situation for me. I remember one of the most memorable & inspirational moments in my childhood. It was a total Napoleon Dynamite scenario lol! Ha-ha I have no idea nowadays what possessed me, in spite of being so despised for no good reason, to enter the school’s talent show in the third grade. I knew I was gonna get beaten up or completely ridiculed but all I remember was wanting to make music so so bad that I didn’t even consider the consequences. I was so used to being hated anyway that for some odd reason the idea of getting to sing and perform completely over shadowed the reality of the situation. I somehow put together a band consisting of the misfits in my school lol and choreographed and dressed us. (Seems like nothing much has changed today ha-ha!) I couldn’t wait to get on stage and sing! Without any real consideration of my fears, unlike nowadays when I get so nervous before a show, back then all I could think about all day & all night was when would I finally get on that stage! I couldn’t breathe properly till it happened. I’ll never ever forget it! The same students who hated me for being Iranian all stood up cheering, just going nuts and running towards the stage as if I wasn’t the same person who they wanted to beat up everyday! To my surprise the whole school stood up and I received a big standing ovation! I was totally expecting and willing to take the punishment that I was certain would be coming my way, simply because I was so happy just to get to sing & perform! I always knew that I came into this world with only one true desire and that I was willing to have to overcome anything for it. I was beyond happy that I was finally being received with an open heart and even more flattered that it was for something that meant everything to me, which has always been music. It was one of my biggest G-D winks up to date. My mom remembers it till this day. My teacher told her that she needed to immediately take me to Hollywood! 🙂 I guess even at that age the music set me free. Maybe the situation in Iran was meant to set me free in more ways than I could have ever realized back then. Of course, just my luck, the very next day, just as everyone at school started to treat me differently, what do yah know? My parents moved us to a different town & that whole chapter was behind me…so I thought 😉

I wouldn’t change my path for anything! All was beyond meant to be. I luv you America. I’ll take you gladly any day with any of your flaws because they are what make u so beautiful. U have given me the freedom to know that I have the power to make real change in the country that I now call my home. That’s all I could ever ask for. I have a real voice and the luxury of Xpressing it!! I’m so happy to be here! 🙂

 

How did this shape you as an artist?

My childhood was definitely a peek into the beginning of shaping me as an artist. It prepared me for everything that was really coming up. I never fit in. I always felt different and out of place. I wasn’t accepted simply because I was born, so it seemed. Everything just seemed out of my control. All the things I struggled with & thought stood against me from the very beginning are slowly becoming, one by one, my biggest blessings & strengths, which help to set me free everyday. My struggles have empowered me and made me fight harder than ever for everything in my life that makes me feel whole and truly happY. I realized real fast, from a young age, how to handle adversity, how to tune out the pain and Xpress myself through my only outlet, which has always been music. I had to teach myself to play, sing and write songs while barely having learned English yet. It also made me super sensitive and compassionate to others’ suffering. I can’t stand seeing people that are mistreated, wrongfully misunderstood, hurt or put down which is probably why I connected so deeply with all the Autistic people I worked with or met right away. I felt their struggle very deep in my heart. I will never ever turn my eyes away from my duty to keep raising awareness. I always knew from a really young age that I’m meant to help others especially because I can never forget everything I’ve witnessed in my heart. Nothing in life will ever make me forget my mission to help others. I’ll always keep setting myself and others free.

“She’s autistic,

artistic,

spirit fighting mind,

spirit shine through,

your happiness past due.

My secrets she keeps,

believes in my dream.


I’m writing this song for you.

I see myself in you.” ~ “Anne Marie” (Dedicated to Autism Awareness)

My parents were really young immigrants who were struggling themselves and unable to always monitor my world. I was dropped off at school and left there to fend for myself. I didn’t even know how to find my classes. I would sit in the bathroom stall during lunch everyday until it was time to get back to class because I was scared I’d get beaten up or ridiculed. I had to get through it all myself. I had to be my own friend and creatively entertain myself through all my fears & aloneness. The only friend who I’ll never forget was a tutor from Chicago who finally stepped into my life and begun helping me to learn English so that I could finally communicate to someone what I was going through. Otherwise, music became my best & only friend. It got me through it all… that and my close connection from the beginning with G-D. The one thing that has never left me since I’ve been born is music. It gave birth to me way before I gave birth to it. It’s not just some hobby, I AM MUSIC, which is why one of my nicknames is Miss Muzik. Ironically, before I was born, while on a trip to New York, my parents heard the name Shirley and fell in love with it. That’s how, even before they knew they would eventually escape Iran, I came to be given the American name Shirley. Coincidentally, Shirley Levi means “Sing to me from the heart” when translated from my mom’s native language of Hebrew. This validates even more that I was destined to sing from the heart! This is my calling and what I came to this world to do. I knew it then and I know it now. That urge has never gone away. It’s my truest luv & I’m very happily married to it for life. The strong deep desire to sing and make music has felt urgent since day one and has never dimmed even when I wished it would so I could live a more stable & predictable life. My childhood made me realize that I need to become completely self-sufficient in every way if I want to survive and heal myself to get things done. My lyrics for my song “Daddy Boy”, are a perfect example of this. “I have to make it, I just can’t fake it. Waiting for somebody else to make me alive.” If I wanna have opportunities and be heard than I have to find and make those happen on my own! I may not be that immigrant from Iran anymore but now I’m an indie artist facing the same challenges and tests. I’m that artist who has somethin’ to say and is unwilling to sell out, Xploit myself or slaughter the soul in my work just for the sake of mass promotion. I’m unwilling to conform to the industries standards just to fit in. I have much higher standards for my music and creative works. I refuse to pollute people’s minds and hearts with material that can potentially influence them in a negative way & lead them in the wrong path. To me it does feel life threatening if I don’t make my own opportunities and follow my truest form of happYness & calling! When I stand back and look at all my most important & valuable creative assets, I can’t help but notice that they have all blossomed on their very own because I was always staying true to myself. If you forget your true calling, IT WILL FORGET YOU! Hurry and get healthy! The world needs your story!! If you BREAK FREE then you obtain that priceless map which will lead you out of your own personal struggles. It’s like a treasure hunt to get outta all that suffering. It’s golden when you survive, so GIVE it to the world!!! NOW!!!!!

“We don’t want to belong to the future, FUTURE BELONGS TO US!” ~ Re-Bel
How did you first learn that children were so drawn to your music and what was your response?

I never really considered that kids would be so drawn to my music because I was under the impression that they may not be able to relate to the maturity of the subjects I wrote about in my album BREAK FREE, but the fact that they get my music is so inspiring for me! In fact, there’s always someone who is letting me know that their kid is my hardcore fan. It’s such a cute surprise! It has been trying to get my attention forever now. It’s so adorable to witness 🙂 I keep being reminded through my relative’s kids or from random people who have turned my music on with kids around. I keep being told, “My kid will not stop asking to hear your music in the car!” Or “my children know your songs by heart! They start dancing and singing to it immediately and are constantly asking for me to play your CD!” Or… “Your Niece is trying to imitate your style and movements while singing your music!” It happens so often that it’s hard not to notice. I get the strongest reaction from little kids!! They go nuts! They become strong advocates of me and I’ve been trying to figure out what is it about my music that they are so drawn and loyal to?!! My little niece said she luved my music even more than Justin Beibers lol! Can u imagine that?! And she’s completely gaga for him! 😉 One of the mothers suggested that it’s because the intention is pure and decorated with fairy-tale likes stories over hooks that are so catchy they get stuck in your head. I think it could be that in a lot of ways, deep in my heart, I’m still like a little kid myself who hasn’t outgrown the idea of believing in the magic of dreams. Because of that I have been true to all my visions & have kept them alive in songs. My melodies and lyrics reflect it all. They can call me naive for refusing to give into all the “ugly” or “what they call impossible ” in the world, but instead of settling for their negativity I paint over it with all the light I can draw from my mind & heart. I see the world thru my imagination and anything is possible!! I chose to live in a colorful & positive existence of hope, with all the choices I’ve made & make for myself in my life. I invest in and surround myself with my dreams.  “I know I live a fairy tale. What they think is heaven, I think is hell. I can make magic!”~ Office in the Sky. If you look at my paintings they are abstract but hopefully thought provoking and filled with layers of meanings like my music videos. In my music, it is very important to me to keep all the meaning and symbolism, yet have it still reach a massive audience because it’s intended to help. I simplify the messages in a way that makes it possible to keep all the layers of soul, depth & symbolic positivity yet still be easily digested, felt & understood. I truly believe that if you’re going to put your work out to the world it better be made of light and intended for the benefit of all mankind. If kids listen to your music then hopefully it will not lead them to make a mistake that can cost them their precious future.

I think the most touching example up to date, having to do with kids and my music, has been with a past business contact in my life. When I was first getting started in LA my friend introduced me to a really big time lawyer who wanted to help take my music to the next level. To make a long story short I wrote a song called “Office in the Sky” which mentions him & my struggles to be heard. My song compares these big time corporate guys who try and play G-D in our paths to THE REAL OFFICE IN THE SKY. I’m comparing his big intimidating office, which overlooked the entire city, to THE REAL G-D WITH THE REAL OFFICE IN THE SKY. “I wish you could see all that I could be….from your office in the sky.”~ Office in the Sky”. I’m begging the lawyer for 15 minutes when in reality it’s me who has the power to make my dreams a reality! Nobody can stand in your way but yourself. Even the devil doesn’t stand in my way anymore! All your life you think it’s that big person who’s gonna get you there. But really it’s THE REAL OFFICE IN THE SKY that will get u there! People try to pose as The MAKER but their not. They are not in control of your destiny. They may be a test along the way that can actually give u insight and be beneficial but ultimately it’s only you that can get u there! Anyhow, this high-powered guy told me that he let his little girl listen to “Office in the Sky” and that she luved it so much that he gave her the CD. He said that he went in to her school shortly after giving her the CD for the class-sharing day and he was so surprised to notice that his little girl chose to share my song! He said all the kids were singing and dancing to it and begging him to help me with my music. I was shocked because I had never met any of them including his little girl! He told me they came after him like my little lawyer mob begging him to help me and repeating my lyrics & saying “Mr.Tores help to set her free! The angels gave her melodies!” Well…he never did. I helped me. Maybe the little kids advocating for me was really for my heart to witness since he dismissed my music shortly after because, in his words, “You need to look and sound more like Britney Spears to make it”. Regardless of his oblivion, I was still beyond moved by the story of the little kids and created the painting for “Office in the Sky” based on this story that he told me. I gave him the painting to give to his little girl as a gift. It’s currently hanging in his house, which was Michael Jackson’s former house.

 

What is your secret superhero power (I know you have one!)?

Ha!!!! Wow Kristen! Believe it or not even though there’s major hints of it in many of my videos & performances no one else has ever asked or pointed that out before! CAN YOU BELIEVE IT??!! I knew you’d be able to detect it considering that u have special powers of your very own! 😉 This interview with you feels really empowering. Yes I definitely have one 🙂 My secret superhero power is that I’m really MISS MUZIK! It’s another nickname for me which I go by sometimes. If u notice I wear my MISS MUZIK cape, boots, ring & headphones in so much of my work & live shows. My music & heart is my superhero power. I’m mentioning them as singular because they feel as if they are one. There’s times when I feel defeated emotionally, in pain or I’m feeling physically worn out as we all do sometimes. I may have a bad cold but the second I start to play & hear my music and sing, my strength & power seem to elevate like a rocket! I feel like I’m flying so high at the speed of light in complete happYness. My soul is totally & completely at peace and in the light. I’m totally balanced & moving completely effortlessly in rhythm. I swear to G-D it feels like magic. I feel like I have so much endorphins & natural energy oozing thru my veins that at that moment I can transport it to an entire stadium or to the world! I feel like I’m finally taking flight in the truest form of my hearts deepest yearning. I am so happy I just want to run as fast as lightning like the bionic woman and spread that energy to every single person I can possibly reach!

The music has gotten me through everything. I’m gone in a completely different dimension & it really does seem like a superhero power. U will notice in my videos, especially in my music video for my song “Your Eyes”, I’m passing the music, like hope & inspiration, from person to person. I always have my headphones on during the video and during some live performances because it feels as if I’m receiving a transmission of songs from G-D & zapping people with it through the end of my chord, like a magic wand. I literally really am doing this all over Hollywood: Running around, dancing, making videos, playing music & making some serious noise! I feel that is my obligation as an artist to keep passing that inspiration. In fact, even my paintings reflect my music & the inspiration that is being replenished by G-D in and out of my heart…replenishing me to keep spreading it and passing it onto others. That’s my super power. I go from being Miss Muzik to Miss Muze!   ; >>> My job is not only to write & sing songs of hope but to also inspire music out of the world! I wanna help others outta their pain and back onto their true calling, through music. I’m Miss Muzik…… in da house!! : >>>

“Run as fast as you can, hand in hand with life! The time is now! Remember yourself free. Be true. Future belongs to you. Re-Bel to shine through!” ~ Re-Bel.

 

When did you know that music was in your blood? What was that “AHA!” moment like?

I never seem to meet anyone who shares this same feeling as me but it really did feel like music was in my blood & my AHA! moment happened way before I was even born. Music felt really urgent to me from the very beginning. My mom told me the other night that I was the easiest childbirth of all her kids. She said it was, “One two three! & I was out in a hurry!”, as if I was in a huge rush to get here and get started on making music already ha-ha! Even my birthday cake at 3 years old was a big guitar! When my dad finally bought me my first guitar, which happened to electric, I swear I couldn’t separate from it. I slept next to it hugging it all night for like a week lol. It felt like my soulmate. Even before I could speak my parents who were big music luvers must have somehow caught on to my early calling cuz my entire bedroom & the whole house was filled with my instruments. They grew up going to Cliff Richard shows and other acts that would perform in the Middle East. They were always and are still crazy about Rock n Roll & Country Music. We were actually invited to Nashville to attend Wynona Judd’s wedding and I remember us being in some bar on the strip watching my dad in a Willy Nelson bandana, and my mom with a cowboy hat, dancing & singing all the legendary country songs that they knew by heart. The bar was covered from wall to wall with country albums, which I didn’t even recognize most of but my parents knew them all! It was so cute and beyond surprising to witness.

 I have to say though that other than just being born, I just realized from this very special interview with you Kristen that my other major AHA! moment would have to be my Napoleon Dynamite moment in 3rd grade which I mentioned in my previous answer. I still think my third grade talent show tops it all off considering the circumstance 🙂 It even tops the AHA! moment of performing at my biggest shows with over 3,000 people.

 

Shirley-Levi-Music-On-My-Shoulder

Shirley Levi: Music On My Shoulder – credit Johnny Otto

 

What inspires you?

Singing to G-D or singing HIS words…especially in Hebrew inspires me & empowers me most. Something very different takes over my soul, my vocals & my melodies. I feel that a completely different vibration is coming out of my voice. I never start my set or rehearsals without singing “THE SHMAH”, which helps to open up my vocal chords and align my spirit & rhythm completely with the light. “THE SHMAH” is a Hebrew prayer which I’ve added my own melody to 🙂

 Life inspires me.  Light. Even the darkness. It’s like a word problem. How am I gonna turn this darkness into light? Real emotions that trigger growth, making me closer to people in my path, inspire me cuz it forces real spiritual wisdom to blossom in me. The things that I hate most & force me to wake up inspire me. Pain. What can I say? It triggers my most powerful fighting mechanisms to defeat & to cope. Not being understood. Not being accepted. Things that torture me on a daily basis make me fight harder & provoke so much emotion that melodies, lyrics and paintings pour out of me like an eternal well! People who have been completely & consistently faithless all my life make me fight even harder! Even when they see me reaching significant & well-earned heights thru tireless devotion & consistent strides forward, they still don’t accept it and even worse they continue to try really hard to veer me off my true calling & path to happYness. Can you imagine that??! Can u imagine someone veering you away from happYness and claiming to luv you?! Well …believe it or not those things do become inspirational cuz they make you fight your hardest. It’s like pure fuel. Ur just like uh uh! This is not my path! NO NO NO NO! It’s not for me! I can’t even fathom the idea! Every time u force me to imagine living the reality u want for me, I feel like I’m being sent to hell! So I think adversities end up serving as inspiration & are actually a big blessing in disguise. It feels like I’m literally fighting to not feel dead while I’m still alive. I definitely don’t want any more pain by any means, lol! I wish I wouldn’t have to go through as many obstacles as I’ve already had to face, although I do think the stronger you get the harder the tests that you receive. Life has made me so much stronger, that like I said before, even the devil doesn’t stand in my way anymore!

“I’m losin’ my mind, I’m losin’ my mind. I’m living YOUR DREAM instead of my reality. I lost my sanity in all it’s vanity.

I’m losing my mind, I’m losing my mind, I’m living MY DREAM instead of your reality. I lost my sanity in all it’s gravity.” ~ Cross the Line

Luv is also a HUGE inspiration to me. All forms of it. Especially soulmate luv, which is something I’ve been searching for all my life. I’ve met forms of it but I can’t tell you I’ve met my long-term true luv soulmate yet. I’m a major loner so if I do chose to get involved it’s usually deep and sometimes crushing. Then I disappear for years and tell about it in my work 🙂 That search and loneliness that also tortures me somehow brings out of me my very best 🙂

“Good-bye to you our love, and your…TE AMOS!
My heart suicide
TE AMO!
TE AMO. 

You’re the ghost
You hurt the most
from a far…” ~ “Te Amo”

That deep yearning & pain inspires melodies & lyrics that can possess my entire being for lifetimes to come. I haven’t achieved anything I feel is timeless & significant without the necessary Xperience of mistakes, heartbreaks, obstacles & pain. I guess that’s why I am so obsessed with HOPE, happYness & light. I’m sick of it! I’m sick of not breaking free fully. I belong in the light and so does everybody else!

 “Can’t keep on waiting for the sun to come up. Life lost it’s meaning. I wept in the dark. In your eyes I live for tomorrow. Can never hide when I’m feeling sorrow. Gonna last, I will follow : >>> In your eyes, I can feel the sun is shine. In disguise, behind that blue-eyed smile. I realize, never compromise! Never felt so alive. Never be deprived!” ~ “Your Eyes”

Luving each other. G-D. Goodness. Freedom. Definitely spirituality & the mystical world. FAMILY. First the ones you are born into who share your DNA & blood because they seem to serve as some kind of balance that is meant to shape you. It’s so powerful when you become aware of it. Then comes the family you pick just because they complete you in one way or another.

Creation inspires me very very deeply. I’m totally and completely obsessed with creation. I live & thrive for it. U can’t drag me away from it. When I’m not creating, I’m contemplating the process of creation before even executing it in any form of medium. Creation of all sorts. As long as I’m communicating it’s usually cuz it feels like a subject that’s urgent and demands my total and complete attention at the moment. I can take music and turn it into paintings, music videos, concepts, theatre, ideas for film, TV, etc etc. The possibilities of creation are endless! It doesn’t leave much time for too much of anything else though 🙂

ACTIVISM. CHARITY. GIVING. HELPING.  Giving is HUGE HUGE in my heart. I’m beyond drawn to and very much enamored by people who also find GIVING to be very inspiring.

BREAKING FREE!!!!!!! BREAKING FREE INSPIRES ME & WILL PROBABLY KEEP MY ATTENTION FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!!      : >>>

 

How have you grown as a person or artist that makes you most proud?

I think what I’m proud of the most is what I struggled with the most: Learning how to believe in myself. I know I sound like I’m determined, so I must be the most secure person, but all of the rebellion is coming from a person who’s sick of being scared and sick of people trying to control my happYness & my thoughts! Ultimately it’s YOU who holds YOU back. Most often, no one can literally stand in your way other than by whispering & projecting their own personal fears into your ears & having you believe it as if it was yours to begin with. By taking it in, internalizing it and allowing their fear to become yours, you end up creating your very own handmade demon, which is the only thing that really ends up standing in your own way. “You could rise like a giant from your fears and shed your tears. To rule your demons like servants. You can fly with your eyes open wide” ~ “Rise Like A Giant” . This kind of empowerment be applied to everything & anyone who tries to hold you back from achieving your dreams and earning your G-D given right to happYness. Society, family, luvers, friends, etc, ANYONE OR ANYTHING THAT’S TRYING TO HOLD YOU BACK. No! It’s not OK to live your life in a coma of mediocrity or suffering! I feel especially bad for those under political tyranny. Even they have a choice! You can still be totally free in your spirit. Wow, can you imagine how incredible it would be for me if I could go back to a FREE Iran & perform one day??!! It would be such a total miracle. In my heart, it’s a big possibility.

 

“I’ll fight your abuse and resist! So tired of being a masochist I’ve crossed the line, I’m feeling fine.
Rip the veil off my eyes. Machine-gunned all your f@$#king lies! I’ve crossed the line, I’m feeling fine!
I have a choice! Givin’ me a voice! It’s in my head, it’s tellin’ me to get ahead. I’m losing my hate.
I talk to myself” ~ “Cross The Line”

That’s an everyday struggle and everyday I fight it because there is no other way for me but to be FREE. I will never be happy with my eyes shut. I will never be happy to not live out the dreams and visions, while asleep or awake, of who I’m meant to be and what my true calling is. I’m so proud, that even though being such a sensitive person, I’m still able get up everyday and find my way through the dark tunnel towards the light.  I know I can reach it. I feel the light is already shining on a third of me right now.  It’s enough to keep me going though, and to keep fighting all my insecurities so that I’ll keep wanting to do the things that make me the happiest. I have to know at the very least that I tried and I never gave up. I ran at the speed of light with all the chains and the weight around me. I found a way to get up the mountain and on my way to take flight! : >>>

 I’m extremely proud of how self-sufficient I’ve become and my ability to keep existing and growing as an indie artist. If you set out to help yourself the universe will supply you with the rest as you go. I was so worried that just because I had no support that it would leave me no choice but to have to quit music. I needed so bad to keep my faith and hope in my dream that I pushed myself to learn how to become a one-woman army which could not be stopped! I learned every software or profession I needed to become proficient in so that it could help me to set my music free. My best friend and fellow artist Johnny Otto supplied me with Final Cut Pro and his infamous one night crash course and said go! He threw me into the deepest part of the ocean where I had to believe in myself enough to learn how to swim. I jumped into it and it all started to flourish after that. I starting writing, directing, producing & editing all my own videos which really helped me to stay true to my creative vision and to develop my own unique style in making Music Videos. I ran all over Hollywood getting total candid reactions from total strangers on the streets and in the subway on Hollywood Blvd. I swear to G-D I never witnessed so much magic till I stepped into Hollywood & started spontaneously filming & stirring up inspiration. People are so darn open creatively in Hollywood that it made all of it into some Houdini Xperience for me ;). I was so shocked and thankful at everything I captured. I got so many G-D winks and gifts along the way that I knew at the core of my being, even through the toughest challenges, that I was on the right path! G-D showed HIMSELF to me in ways that it was clear he had already gotten to all my creative destinations way before I did! One example of this would be the time I was filming my first music video for my song “Your Eyes” on Hollywood Blvd, where I stepped on Red Skelton’s star. Years later I noticed by total coincidence that another star with his name on it was waiting for me right outside of the dance studio where I was preparing with my crew for a HUGE EQUALITY show in Hollywood! I thought it was strange the Red Skelton’s star was following me on my journey as if to reassure me that I was on the right path! When I finally looked up his name to figure out why he was following me around I discovered that his big radio show was called “AVALON TIME” & realized it was “AVALON TIME” for me because Avalon was the venue I was getting my crew ready for!!! This was a MAJOR G-D WINK FOR ME, during a time I really needed it. It gave me the confidence to believe that I was more than able to pull off this giant project into victory! I will expand on that further one day with more examples, real visuals & details that will turn anyone into a believer!! : >>>

Shirley-Levi-Equality

Shirley Levi Equality – credit Johnny Otto

For all things Shirley Levi, please visit her official website http://www.shirleylevi.com/ or buy Break Free on iTunes. Shirley will also be debuting her song “Re-Bel” on Indie 103.1 with legendary DJ Jonathan L. this Jan 14th.

 Posted by at 18:08