In This Moment

Take a step back and reflect
on what you have now
and not what you want.
Stop worrying about the past.
Stop fretting over the future.
Cherish your loved ones,
and let them cherish you.
In this moment find 
peace, joy, and love. 
Be alive and be kind.

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Emancipator Ensemble – Winter Tour 2014

Minnesota’s cold didn’t stop people from seeing Emancipator at Mill City Nights, Minneapolis. Lights, dancing, hype – a Saturday night to remember.

Emancipator Ensemble 2014 at Mill City Nights

Emancipator (Doug Appling) and his ensemble started with “Lionheart,” one of the many great songs from “Soon It Will Be Cold Enough.” Remixes and a variety of songs from all the albums came after, which was accompanied by colorful visuals projected on a large screen behind the group. Fast and slow beats from the drum and bass, hypnotizing violin playing, and a mash-up of other melodies captured the crowd of more than 200 people.

Mill City Nights looked empty when the doors opened at 8:30 p.m. As the night went on, however, the place slowly filled up until people were shoulder to shoulder. First, Beak Nasty of St. Paul, Minn. set the tone, getting everyone excited for the oncoming show. Real Magic from Oakland, Calif. slowed things down with his chill music before Odesza from Seattle, Wash. got the crowd dancing again. Soon, everyone was more than ready for the main act, which appeared around midnight and ended with an encore around 2 a. m.

Based in Portland, Ore., Emancipator released his first album in 2006, and his newest album, Dusk to Dawn, was released in 2013. Emancipator Ensemble ends their 2014 Winter Tour on Feb. 22 in Athens, Ga.

Happy New Year 2014!

May 2014 bring courage to those who quake in fear, love to those who dwell in hate, and peace to those who suffer in conflict. As I enter this New Year, I look forward to strengthening my relationships and emotional health. Although I would like to improve in many areas, it is good to remember that long-lasting changes take time. Be patient. Do not lose hope. Have faith. We are not alone.

There are some who say to forget the past and start new. I think it is good to forgive but not to forget. I believe, without remembering the past, we lose motivation to keep going, improving, living. We forget why we changed—why it was important to change. I believe we need the good. We need the bad. We need each other. We need love from strangers, friends, family, and ourselves.