New Album, 2 Graduations,1 Wedding , oh my!

Hellooooo end of Summer!

I’ve had a crazy last few months…..  finished producing and recording the new album, had both kids graduate …my son from high school and my daughter from college.  My daughter got married at the end of June! Whew!  What a marvelous, exhausting ride planning a wedding can be. Two days after the wedding, my husband and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary!! Lots of big life events in a short few months. I’m really excited but a wee bit emotional about the empty nest. Our daughter  has already moved away and our son will be off to college next week!. Upcoming? CD release…Finally, I know! I’ve gotten great feedback from those that pre-ordered the album so I’m looking forward to the public release! For now here’s a few pics of my crazy few months. Soon I’ll be announcing the BIG CD release EVENT so stay tuned!!

A Million Kisses Album cover

Deanna and Drake Graduation

Deanna and Drake Graduation

Family Wedding pic

Family Wedding pic

Debbie and Derek 30 years!

Debbie and Derek 30 years!

Pre-Order my New Album Now!

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A Million Kisses….is almost complete! Join me in ushering this new music into the World. By PRE-ORDERING you’ll get bonus items,exclusive content and be on my private team through completion. And you’ll be getting some great romantic jazz into your ears!

This music is for you if you’ve ever known love and wanted to nurture it and make it last. It’s for you if you know that lasting love means hanging in there no matter what.
This project is dedicated to those who celebrate STAYING IN LOVE. I married my high school sweetheart and 29 years later, we’re still enjoying the journey of being in love, weathering storms and living our adventure together. And It’s possible for you too! This album celebrates and encourages couples on their journey of making love last.
So if you believe in the power of love and loving for a lifetime, please pre-order your copy today!

New CD in the works…..

Spring has sprung in TN! I have been busy working on my new CD A Million Kisses! So exciting to finally be making some progress with this record. I am kicking off a per-order-crowdfunding campaign very soon so stay tuned. In this process you will be able to see behind the making of the music …get cool stuff like an autographed CD, singing telegrams, hand written lyric sheets, a song written just for you or someone you love and you get to cast your vote on a few things like cover art and more! To make sure you get all the insider info join the Insiders newsletter at debbie cunningham Jazz.com

 

Marriage & Branding

Last night I was the featured vocalist at a regional Christian Women in Media event where I heard Mila Grigg from Moda Image Consulting speak on personal branding. Now branding is a hot topic in this age of digital media. What others think of your company or your product makes a difference in your company’s success. I’ve heard many people speak on branding over the years but this one resonated deeply with me. It got me thinking about marriage.  I know you are thinking, “huh?” but stay with me.  Mila said that you don’t own your brand, your customer does and what they say about you when you leave the room IS your brand. So let’s translate that to your marriage relationship. What if your marriage “brand” directly correlates to your relational success? What is your brand there? Would your spouse say you are kind, generous, loving, joyful, forgiving in your marriage or would the residue that remains when you leave the room be frustration, anger, bitterness, annoyance or sorrow? IF the way we carry ourselves within what we do for a living can truly make or break us, wouldn’t that same principle apply to our relationships? Specifically our marriages?

It nailed me. Too often the fragrance I leave in the room is not one that truly resonates with who I want to be as a wife. Juggling my family, career, volunteering at church, planning 2 weddings ( my daughter’s & my sister’s), being head of a local high school music board, running a household ie: laundry,cooking ,cleaning….can leave me frazzled, if not kept in balance. When it is out of balance it spills over into my marriage. Not pretty…Ugh.

Marriage isn’t easy. It takes intentional investment to maintain and grow a rich relationship. What do you want to be known for in life? More specifically, what do you want to be known for in your marriage?  I can tell you, what you are known for in your peripheral relationships can be way different than those close to you at home. You should ask your spouse or your kids. They’ll tell you the hard truth. They are the ones who see the good, bad and the ugly and love you anyway.  At home the real branding emerges. So what is your marriage brand? Is it what you want to be known for? If not, how might you change that today? Something to think about.

Would love to hear from you if you want to comment below. And yes I’m open to the good, bad and the ugly because it matters. Please feel free to like, share this post too. 🙂

It’s a New Year!

By now we are 2 weeks into the new year- 2016! I’m still having to catch myself writing the date. January can be exciting because it is a time to reflect on the previous year and to look forward to what is in store or maybe what changes can be made. Perhaps 2015 was hard for you so 2016 means a fresh start! I had a very busy year in 2015. I think every year seems to get busier when you have a family.  I had exciting opportunities; Singing at Carnegie Hall, working with a vocal coach in NYC that I had been wanting to work with, working with some amazing musicians this year, streaming my first show on line,writing new songs for my upcoming record, having my family sing with me at my annual Christmas concert in TN ( that’s the pic above…I promise the purple hair IS from the stage lights!), turning 50, Celebrating my daughter’s engagement and spending time with extended family over the holidays!  There was lots of mundane too; the work of owning my own business, day in and day out of managing a household, cooking ,cleaning, grocery shopping, laundry (you didn’t think I get out of all that did you?)…chauffeuring kids when unexpectedly we were down to one vehicle with 4 schedules and jobs. We all learned to be more flexible in that season. I tore my rotator cuff several months ago and now I’m learning to delegate and ask for help…not my forte! Those are just the highlights that made for a crazy year. Whew! Some of this last year was difficult and  I’m glad to start fresh again. But I am so thankful for all of it, albeit, in hindsight. I learned a lot! Looking forward, I believe many exciting things  are coming THIS year just awaiting for us to uncover them. Michelangelo once said, “In every block of marble I see a statue as plain as though it stood before me, shaped and perfect in attitude and action. I have only to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to the other eyes as mine see it.” 

What walls do you need to hew away in order for your best year to be revealed?  Maybe some things, habits and  over commitments need to go in order for you to live the life you desire. Perhaps to be less stressed? Healthier? More time for things that are priorities? Think about it and comment below what changes and or new habits you are planning to incorporate this year. I would love to hear from you and maybe you’ll inspire someone else. And remember to write 2016!

 

Christmas Show Announced!

 

Debbie singing Santa Baby to audience participant

Debbie Cunningham and friends annual Swingin’ Christmas show is scheduled for

Friday December 18th, 2015!

8pm $20 Door

*$15 PreSale thru 12/12 Buy Here: http://dcjazzxmasshow.brownpapertickets.com

Location:

Franklin Brentwood Arts Performance Hall

210 Gothic Ct. Suite 200

Franklin, TN 37067

Limited tickets on Pre-Sale  BUY NOW!   http://dcjazzxmasshow.brownpapertickets.com

Join the Insider’s list to be first to hear news of shows & discounted tickets and free music !

 

 

My special 50th birthday gift….

    

So last week I turned 50! So strange….I still feel 25 on the inside. Of course I don’t know what fifty is supposed to feel like but right now it is feeling pretty good. My husband surprised me with the most thoughtful gift, Fifty conversations. Now before you men start hyperventilating and you ladies start salivating that my husband is a talker just breathe. HE didn’t plan on having 50 conversations with me …LOL! He’s too smart for that. He organized 50 people to call me, catch up and wish me a Happy Birthday for fifty days leading up to my 50th birthday. What an undertaking! And what a thoughtful gift….for me; His very relational wife, who loves to connect with people. 50 cards would have been cool but 50 conversations? I spoke to jr high, high school & college friends, my high school choir director, my elementary church choir director, my 4th grade teacher, far away family & friends I seldom see…it was lovely.

It was the most amazing gift I’ve ever received!

It got me thinking too about being a half a century old. All the things I have experienced, the people I have known, the cities where I’ve lived….I am so rich with friendships and memories, love and laughter. For this I am so very thankful! I am looking forward to the next fifty years; the people I will meet and the new friendships that will grow and the exciting adventures yet to be had! I mean Grandma Moses didn’t start painting until her 70’s! I have new experiences awaiting me and so do you! Next on the agenda is finishing my CD but after that who knows? And you? what new adventures are you dreaming of? Do tell….

Besides…there are perks to turning 50….like Not worrying what people think as you wear your birthday sash and embracing the gluten free French Silk Pie! Just sayin’…… 🙂

 

 

 

Carnegie Hall

  

As I sit here writing this post I am in the non-equity waiting room at the Actor’s  equity Building in New York City. I am here supporting a dear friend as she auditions. She is equity, so she is somewhere else. Ahh… The hierarchy of the biz. 🙂  I am also here working with a vocal coach. Training should never stop as we continue in our craft. Last month, when I posted, I was on my way to NYC to sing at Carnegie Hall! What an amazing experience it was to stand on that stage with my son ( and 100 other people) and sing Handel’s Messiah with the New York Chamber Orchestra. It truly was a moment I’ll never forget. The hall itself, beside being such an icon, is exquisite in design. The sound? You can hear a whispered note all the way to the balcony. Stunning!  We were fortunate enough to sit there and listen to another performance.

Definitely a bucket list experience!

Summer is…..

For me, the word SUMMER brings with it a host of descriptive words! Hot,sunny,fun,beach,friends, outdoors,BBQ….not getting up at 5:30 am. Most especially it equals MORE FAMILY TIME!  I absolutely love and value the time I have with my husband and kids. The older the kids get the less it seems we are together because they are creating lives of their own. So I’ll take what I can get. It’s nice to relax a bit in summer too. My kids love the ARTS as much as my husband and I do. Recently, we took a family vacation and ended it by seeing the show, NEWSIES at Tennessee Performing Arts Center. It was fun to attend as a family and discuss what we enjoyed about the show. Amazing cast that jumps, flips and taps their way through the entire night! We have a busy summer ahead but we will grab the fun & make memories together even if it is just family game night and homemade pizza. Sometimes you just have to seize the moment today because we don’t know how many moments we have.

What are you doing for YOUR Summer fun??? Comment below to share and you never know…just maybe you might inspire someone else to seize the moment! #HappySummer!!

What yoga taught me about life

A few months ago I started taking a Yoga class at our local recreation center. I’ve always avoided yoga. Just thought it wasn’t for me. As I am aging, however, I’ve noticed my joints are stiffer and I’m just not as flexible as I used to be. Thus the need for much more stretching. Several of my friends have started yoga and they found great health benefits from it.

The other reason….

For several years now I’ve tried with doctors and nutritionists to lose weight. It has been a frustrating process. The verdict? I’m way overstressed. Really? What do I have to be stressed about. I’m happily married, 2 great kids. I think just the balance of life, raising kids, working, building a career as an artist, running my own entertainment company oh and…cooking, cleaning, laundry, volunteering at school & church. I guess I do have a lot on my plate! Taking Yoga has been  great exercise for me but also a great opportunity for me to be mindful of self-care. Something we women seem to forget about too easily. Between working,caring for our families and our homes, volunteering, we can be overloaded on a daily basis. Taking the time to be in class was a huge shift for me to slow down for my health’s sake. Our instructor is a lovely, gentle woman who  reminds us to take things slowly and listen to our bodies via what hurts and what does not. We will make progress as we continue. Hurting ourselves to prove something doesn’t accomplish anything. First class, I  was reminded of this all important lesson though, not just in yoga but in life. It’s this: “IT’S OKAY TO BE WHERE YOU ARE. Be gentle with yourself, not allowing your ego or judgement to come in play. There are no Yoga police.”  Hmm…although I’ve heard that in a million ways over the years, I’ve never adopted it for myself. Learning to stop judging myself, especially as I am aging has been an eye opener.  Life changes and we change. Life gets crazy sometimes and everything we always did may not get done this week, month or even this year. Focus on what is important.

LIFE can be challenging…..give yourself a break. Done is better than perfect. Mistakes are okay. It means you are trying. Give your best to everything you do and forget about comparison. Truly, it just delays progress. You have to start from somewhere and where you currently are… is just fine.    🙂