Hope you've been great!
For me, the last few weeks have been crazy amazing.
Three days ago, I turned another year wiser.
I saw my IDOL perform live (more to share soon)!
And I performed on the HMF 2017 stage in Fresno, CA.
So today, I'm giving you a brief look behind the scenes of my HMF experience. ENJOY!
You know how just one person can change an entire experience? Well, I had two people during HMF 2017. 75% of my weekend was spent with these two talented artists, Pat Her of SuddenRush & Alicia Thao, the HMF 2017 Rising Star winner; and I wouldn't have had it any other way. (Missing my third roommate, Miss Youa Xiong - see below!)
VIP Meet & Greet
This is still one of my most favorite experiences that I get to have in this lifetime -- meeting YOU in person.
"Hmo no, koj ncaim ntawm kuv mus...mus nyob deb deb..." Right before this shot, I shared with this humble & talented band just how special their songs are to me. As a young teenager, the only way I could hear their music was through the local Hmong radio. So every evening at 5 PM, I'd patiently wait for someone to dedicate a song to a loved one, hoping s/he chose one of Illusion's songs. Decades later, it was awesome to hear them live at HMF 2017!
A brief moment of a few of us solo artists hanging out before meeting our VIP guests. Everyone was so chill and relaxed. It was all looooove. L to R: Blia Lor, yours truly, Youa Xiong, & Alicia Thao.
Kub Vaj & Band
The artist, Kub Vaj (to my right), is a true gentleman, and his band is really an extension of that too. When the first band, So Siab, had a bass go out during their live set, Kub's band stepped in, ran up, & shared their bass with the band immediately. No second thoughts. So grateful to have met these humble & inspiring musicians!
How do you know when someone is passionate about something he's doing? When his family is there, in full support of him. I had a great time meeting the family of one of the HMF organizers, Kongtxou Xiong (to my right). They made sure artists were on time, had water, had food, knew where to go, etc. And they reminded me that family is second to none, and that they're the reason you can still stand at the end of a long, hard day. So much respect for this family! Thank you!
Kham, Roger, Pat, Joe, & Chee Nou Her. A genuinely warm, giving family of musicians. So much love and respect for all of you. And I will visit Canada one day soon!
YOUR TURN! Are there images you captured from HMF 2017 that I haven't seen? Tag me on social media -- I'd love to see your experience!
Until next time...