Counting blessings and moving forward in 2016
In April 2015, I made the decision with my family to go full-time with music and to focus on building up my presence back on YouTube. I had the goal of creating and releasing 3 videos per month plus 1 blog post. I also told myself I wanted to work with the multi-channel network Maker Studio and did my research to get linked with them, eventually signing with them within 3 months of quitting my job. In 9 months released 36 videos (both music & non-music content) on my main channel, while releasing 14 videos on my vlog channel! That's approximately 5 videos per month - a total of 50 videos in 9 months. The year before I decided to focus just on music and YouTube, I released merely 3 videos in 1 year. I had lost my vision and motivation. I didn't carve out the time to make creative content because that part of my soul was neglected and covered in dust. It was time to revitalize and get back into the groove of things. Getting to have a flexible schedule and being open to trying new things (collaborations with other artists, brand deals, etc.) allowed me to relaunch myself into a creative space. We all know that it's supposed to be about quality over quantity, but the quality of the experiences and relationships I built through uploading and letting out into the world 50 videos meant that I was being productive in a special way. This year I don't know if I'll be releasing as much content, but I can guarantee you it'll definitely be more than 3 (hehe :p) , and it'll be worth looking out for. I'm so grateful I was able to try different things, work with new people, and take some risks.
A few collaborations with artists & videographers I worked with for the first time:
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One of the risks included potentially losing subscribers because they may not have liked the new things I was releasing.
Some out of the ordinary video content I released:
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The 'scariest' tangible risk was finances. I really couldn't have gone this long without my husband's support as well as my Patreon supporters. Joules had a lot on his shoulders working his day-job, on top of working on his own music, but he trusted I would use this time wisely. It stretched me in so many directions and really made me question where I stood with music and my presence on YouTube. God was good (as always) to our family so we never had to go under, but I can't tell you how much of a strain it put on us. Faith pulled us through. An example, one month winning a pair of Yeezys helped with raking in some extra dough on the side. Thank the Lord! Joules and I decided that in 2016, I'd embark on a new journey with working full-time again (this time with a new company) if God so opened the door, and learn to juggle music and YouTube with this newfound creative push.
I'm happy to announce I got news this week that I was hired full-time with a start-up in Atlanta and I can't wait to share with you more about it as I get more plugged in. It'll be Monday through Friday so nights and weekends will be dedicated to music and building up our household's purpose.
My time will definitely be more scarce outside of work hours to create, but I'm sure my community here in ATL will be understanding of my grind and spend time with me in coffee shops or in my home as I edit videos :) I'm confident that I won't lose the genuine support I've been getting from wonderful friends.
With that being said, I'm going into 2016 ready to focus on my original music and continuing this fearless mentality of what my channel(s) mean to me. I also have more fun business venture ideas I plan on exploring. The month of December I was able to release two original songs which was a foreshadow to me dialing into more songwriting and I gave little glimpses of what type of videos I want to release for my platform - my canvas for expression!
The original songs I released in December - very festive!
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I'd like to give a special thank you to the following folks who have absolutely been a helping hand in 2015 for 'Jennifer Chung' and 'Songversations with Jennifer.'
- Joules: my rock, my husband, the man who pushes me the most
- Daniel Pae: my new writing partner in crime and brother in Christ
- Chloe (As It Seams): my sister from another mister who's so talented, gracious, and reliable
- Kato on the Track: brother from another mother who's kept it cool through the grind
- Roark Bailey: the talented guy who does it all - guitar, production, vocals, engineering
- Josh Fu: my friend who I want to have here in Atlanta forever - so talented and giving - true brother in Christ who's blessed me with honest friendship and workmanship
- Denver Bailey: a videographer friend who's been down to create some random work while hardly knowing me - in it to win it.
- Daniel Young Kim: for helping me produce the fastest turn around for "hello" (which is doing pretty good still!)
- Will Gittens: A talented friend I met through the Voice and collaborated with me on one of my favorite tracks this past year
- Lacy Q: My channel manager and new friend who's been super supportive during my transition back and celebrating my little wins.
- My Patrons: Tony Chou, Alysha, Jeram Hyde, Kim, Asa Ellison, Simon Liu, Daniel Lee, Brian O'Dowd, Jenny, Michelle Park, Stephanie Chang, Mel Tajon, Judy Lee, Rowena Tue, Sam Kim, James Ro, Steven lin, John Longawa, Cass Song, Ellen Shen, Jaime & Eric Cho - for having their hand through the process step-by-step. The music & videos wouldn't have happened without you.
I end this blog post with the first musical video I uploaded on YouTube in collaboration for Roark's upcoming project #LightsintheDistance.
Thank you, and if you haven't already, please subscribe to my YouTube channel!
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