Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Why does Home Free's music touch so many people?

Over the past year I have joined several Home Free fan groups and the one common denominator in most of these groups is how Home Free’s music got them through tough times, myself included. I’m certain that most musicians inspire hope, love and some tears in songs they perform, whether they wrote them or not. And I know that musicians, sports figures and actors have their dedicated followers. So, why do I think Home Free is a little different? Why do Home Free fans, or Home Fries, work so hard to let the world know about these five guys? Let me share what I’ve heard and seen this last year, and maybe you’ll understand too.

The first thing that grabs you and doesn’t let you go, is how Home Free delivers a song. It doesn’t matter if they are singing about love, losing love, a wife that spends too much, moms, being faithful, Christmas carols or their butts, they have your attention. Each man has his own unique quality and whether they are showing off one man’s talent or all five are showing off, you can’t help but listen to the end, so you don’t miss anything.

Chris and Adam Rupp, Rob Lundquist, Tim Foust and Austin Brown could each wow you individually, and they do so without musical instruments. Chris knows how to sing to the ladies and make them sigh with his smooth, charming voice and the cowboy hat is just a bonus. Adam will blow your mind with his jaw dropping vocal percussion and beatboxing, plus his dance moves will leave you wanting more, a lot more. Rob can sing the hell out of any song you give him, whether it’s an angelic carol or a rap song, he does it all and he does it well. Tim’s playful, but alluring deep bass voice will rock your world, but don’t count him out of a sweet ballad, his tenor voice will make the ladies swoon every time. Austin, well he knows how to give a song life, his youthful vigor gives his singing multiple dimensions that will leave you awe-struck. I know, I've seen them in concert and their live performance is astonishing!

That’s their talents, which are obvious in all they do. Now let’s talk about the effect their music has on their fans. I have heard stories of how their music has helped young people better deal with disorders, ill or injured people fight harder through recovery, those who have lost smile in tough times, and give those with a lack of confidence a little more oomph to keep trying. Maybe it’s because Home Free has been at this for almost fifteen years and has never stopped working hard, or because these guys are incredibly personable and inviting in their VIP sessions or because they love to show their fans that they are having a great time and how much they appreciate our support. Not to mention how they support so many other artists, family and friends in social media on a regular basis. It could also be that they are just plain fantastic musicians, fun and adorable and fans just want to get to their next concert!

So, from all of this, you can pick a reason as to why these guys are so inspirational to their fans. They encourage never giving up, stay true to yourself, treat people the way you want to be treated, stay humble and appreciate the little things in life. Add all that to some amazing fans, who have the same beliefs and appreciate damn good music and you get an unbreakable bond between Home Free and Home Fries around the world. Home Fries feel that the least they could do for Home Free, after all they do for us, is spread the word about their exceptional music.

Check them out on YouTube. If you’re not already a Home Fry, you might just want to become one! https://www.youtube.com/user/HomeFreeVocalBand

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Thank you friends, social media, online games and Home Fries!

I know social media has been getting some bad press lately, and taken to the extreme, it’s just like anything else, it can be harmful. However, social media came into my life at a low point for me and helped bring me back into the living.

I joined Facebook shortly after I lost one of my best friends from high school. As tough as that loss was for me, the fact that I had so many people, that I hadn’t talked to in years, “friend” me, made me smile. And we all know that when you talk with old or new friends about their lives, it often helps you get past the bumps in your life. I spent time catching up with people from high school, kids I used to babysit and co-workers. There were lots of wide-eyed, whoa moments, and plenty of fun too.

Then, by my son’s doing, I started playing games. That brought a whole new world into my social media life. I started talking with people from all over the world, and many of them, quickly became my friends. I’ve never met any of them and probably never will. That was six years ago and I’m still friends with many of them. When I lost my mom, I had so many more people there for me, and that was priceless.

Recently, as many of you know, I have become a HUGE Home Free fan, and again social media has brought me many new friends. Home Free is a country a cappella group that will get you hooked on a cappella music. However, something else they have is the greatest fans in the world. I joined several fan groups, which, at first seemed odd at my age. But in time I got comfortable and started talking with many fans. Plus, this time, I actually got to meet some of my online friends! A few Home Fries are local to me and that led to concerts in Oklahoma and Texas and some great times. One sweet lady flew all the way from Germany to Dallas, Texas to see a Home Free concert! I have a whole new set of friends that have put me on a path to writing again, sharing, crying and laughing until my sides ache. It’s been an amazing nine months getting to know Home Fries from around the world.

Now, so you don’t think I sit in front of my computer all the time and type my life away, I have plenty to keep me busy. My son has been in a marching band, playing Bass drum, for the last 6 years, in high school and college. I’ve been to almost every home game he marched in and a few competitions. Plus many concerts, like Barbershop chorus, Cuban drums and Men’s choir. My daughter and I are very active in Girl Scouts. She becomes a Brownie this year with a great cookie selling track record. I am a volunteer photographer for our troop and our service unit and I’m the Cookie Momster for our troop. My kids, band and Girl Scouts have also brought many new friends into my life.

So you see, social media really can be a great source of meeting people and learning amazing things. When I say learning new things, I don’t mean believing everything you read and the drama, I mean talking with people of all ages and from all over the world. I have learned about conditions I never knew existed, triumphs that shouldn’t have happened and the endless amount of strength and hope that people possess. Men, women and children alike. And let's not forget some of the funniest jokes too! Social media doesn’t have to be your only source of socializing, but it can make what you have even better. However, as we’ve all heard before, all things in moderation.

So this goes out to all my social media friends, the ones I’ve been lucky enough to meet and the many I haven’t met. You have all enriched my life in ways that are hard to describe, but easy to know. And to all of my family and friends, on social media or not, thank you for being a part of my life and best wishes to you all! And now, since I don't get paid to blog, I guess I should get back to work and so should you! 

Monday, May 11, 2015

Featured song lyrics "The Studio"

Today's featured song lyrics are from a song called "The Studio." Back in March I mentioned that I entered a writing contest in one of the Home Free fan groups. I wrote a short article about how Home Free inspired me to start writing again. I have featured two of the three songs lyrics mentioned in that article, and today is the third song lyrics. "Homeward Bound in Texas," was the first one and it can be found on the New Song lyrics page. "Mae," was the second one and it can be found on the Out of the Box Song Lyrics page. Today it's "The Studio." The inspiration for these song lyrics came from a single short post by Tim Foust earlier this year. He simply posted, "Back to the studio." That simple post got me thinking about how hard it must be for musicians that tour or live in one state, but work in another state, feel when they have to leave their families and loved ones behind. And there was my inspiration for the lyrics to "The Studio." Thanks, again, for the inspiration, Home Free and Tim Foust.

The Studio
The winter brings in the cold and snow
I’m here with you and I don’t want to go
But it’s back to work and back on the road
It could be months before I get back home

Time to get to the studio and write some new songs
Not leaving for good, but right now it’s where I belong
I’ll get back when I can, to make right what’s wrong

It gets lonely in the bus, driving all night
I close my eyes and see your smile, feels so right
I want to get home and hold you real tight
But my music calls, I get on stage under the lights

Time to get to the studio and write some new songs
Not leaving for good, right now it’s where I belong
I’ll get back when I can, to make right what’s wrong

The fans kept us on the stage tonight, real late
It was an awesome show, the new songs went great
Now it’s time for a rest, two day trip to the next state
I’ll call in the morning, I hope you don’t mind the wait

Time to get to the studio and write some new songs
Not leaving for good, right now it’s where I belong
I’ll get back when I can, to make right what’s wrong

Written by Michelle Gallardo February 15, 2015

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Home Free ROCKS the Dallas audience

Good Wednesday afternoon everybody! I had a great end to the week and weekend. It was filled with Home Fries and Home Free! I bought VIP tickets to the Dallas show back in December, but, by some great stroke of luck, a Home Fry offered me an extra VIP ticket she had to the Oklahoma City show four days before Dallas. Well, I just couldn't say no (that would be rude, right?)! I met a great group of Home Fries and shared my first VIP experience with friends. I was so nervous, but I was put at ease by Austin and Rob, almost immediately. They were all very sweet. I commend them all for their patience and never ending smiles. If only there was a way to bottle their compassionate country gentlemen attitudes!

Since I had the great fortune to see two shows in four days, but I don't want this to be too long, I am going to concentrate on the Dallas Show. Mainly because the Dallas show was simply out of this world.

First, about twenty or so Home Fries met at Campisi's in downtown Dallas for an early dinner. We all had the pleasure of meeting a truly dedicated fan that flew all the way from Germany JUST to see the Home Free concert. She was sweet, excited, overwhelmed and just a pleasure to meet. I found myself very excited that she was going to meet Home Free.

In the VIP session we started with autographs and to my complete amazement, Rob remembered me from the OKC show. How cool is that!? I took my seven year old daughter and my twenty year old musician son with me. My daughter gave the guys Girl Scout cookies and I had to laugh a little at Adam. He was very hopeful that we had included the peanut butter cookies. Again, so personable and fun, all of them. We took our VIP pictures with the guys and then had a Q & A. It was refreshing and enjoyable hearing them talk comfortably about their lives and plans.

Now on to the show itself. I'm not sure I can find the best words to describe this show, but I will try. The moment they walked on the stage, the crowd went crazy! "Life Is A Highway," is such a great song and their version is filled with energy, personality and of course, bass! Afterwards Tim was talking about how great it was to be home, back in the south and proceeded to sing "The stars at night are big and bright." From what I heard, every person in that theater sang loud and proud "Deep in the Heart of Texas!" It was an awesome moment! That set the energy level for the rest of the show, both from Home Free and the audience.

Home Free then put on the show of a lifetime, my lifetime anyway. They were on fire all night! From the heartfelt song "Mom" to the seat wiggling "Butt Remix, to the ground rumbling "Ring of Fire" and right down to Adam's exceptionally superior beatboxing solo. I felt every angelic and rocking note Rob projected, absorbed every beautiful and powerful note Austin wailed, loved and held on to each note Chris sang like he was singing just to me, and closed my eyes and felt every rumble Tim produced and savored his sweet tenor voice too. I sang every song with them, danced in my seat, laughed, cried and cheered my fool head off! I don't know how they do it, night after night, but these five gentlemen will capture your heart and soul when you see them live. If you've never seen them live, you really need too, period.

I know they have fans around the world and I hope someday every fan gets a chance to see their show live. These five gentlemen will take all the worries out of your life and give you music the way it was originally given to us, just our voices. Chris, Adam, Rob, Tim and Austin are music. From the soft and loving to the completely care free and can't keep your feet still songs, they can do it all. Thank you Home Fries and Home Free for a week and weekend I will never forget, it was simply awesome!

Addendum: I also wanted to give a special thanks to the Home Free crew. They made the VIP experience fun and kept things moving. I always knew where I should be and what was next. I have some great VIP pictures, plenty of autographs and great merchandise. Let's not forget the remarkable light show and the impressive sound, from the bottom to the top. So Thank You Nate, Heather, Johnny and Allen for making the show even better!