New Music Video - "Snowflake"
When I wrote “Snowflake” I was reflecting back, remembering the exhilarating feeling of looking up into the cold nighttime sky on a snowy winter night in my hometown of Minneapolis, Minnesota. With my head tilted up I watched what looked like thousands and thousands of snowflakes tumbling and twirling, each one spinning in it’s own unique direction. Looking out over a landscape covered in a blanket of sparkling white snow as far as the eye can see was a pretty magical feeling.
There is a certain stillness
the snow brings in the middle of a Minnesota winter, offering an opportunity for quiet reflection
as if all time
While feeling grateful for the connection to nature and a sense of something bigger than myself that memory rekindled, I couldn’t help but also think about the opposite of peace. The many different and tragic ways people experience pain in the world, separation through war, and loss of any kind.
I’ve always felt so much pride about my hometown of Minneapolis, a city that's rich with diversity and home to many cultures. I attended a high school where white students were the minority, and I loved that about our school. A city that has given birth to and nurtured many incredible artists and musicians such as The Replacements and Prince.
I thank my lucky stars that I had parents who were quick to educate me that all people are equal and deserving of fair treatment, whether it’s the color of their skin, or who their heart falls in love with.
When George Floyd was killed less than 2 miles from the high school I attended followed by violent rioting and adversity, it was a rude awakening for me. How could this have happened in a place that triumphed in embracing diversity? It was the first time I ever felt ashamed of where I came from.
As events began to unfold I did whatever I could to educate myself, listened to friends and other people speak about their personal stories of discrimination, watched relevant movies like The 13th, and kept an open mind to what was being shared on the news and social media. The more I learned, the more devastated I felt. I was truly shocked to discover the state of our country and the unacceptable and appalling level of racism and discrimination that still exists.
Something inside of me shattered, and it needed to be shattered.
I wanted to do whatever I could to support the movement in America that is attempting to shine light on these inequities and injustices. These events made racism in America impossible to deny or ignore. Not only are there people suffering all over the world from circumstances like poverty and war, but in our own country, there is so much suffering that could be healed by simply seeing one another as fellow human beings, all deserving of equal rights, equal opportunities, and respect. Equal rights are what our country was founded on, and should be a minimum expectation to uphold for ourselves and our fellow US citizens.
While the deaths are devastatingly tragic and never should’ve happened, I’m grateful for what I and the American people have been forced to open our eyes to since the shocking video of George Floyd’s murder was released. We have a chance to evolve past and heal our history and move toward a reality where all people have a safe place to live and thrive.
Sharing this message through the vehicle of music is my effort to vocalize the importance of supporting equal rights and opportunities for ALL human beings.
Directed, shot, and edited by Kaley Dae Hanson. Production assistance by Ryan Padgett.
Special thanks to Robert Tjon Joe Pin and Kassy Acree.