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Book of Songs is a splendour of Pop songs where East meets West, influenced by Chinese poetry and Western classical music.

I am a self-funded, self-managed independent musician. I am Australian. My chinese name is 许舒慧


I am making my 4th studio album (due for release MARCH 2017) and i need your help! By pledging, you have have access to exclusive updates over the next months and fun rewards. You will be the first to receive the new album in your mailbox! 


I hope you will join me. 

Thank you for your support. If queries, please say hello at sophiekoh.com.


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THE STORY:

In early 2014, i sat down at Greg 'J ' Walker's (Machine Translations, Paul Kelly) piano at his home in Gippsland. I played him snippets of piano tunes i had scribbled down over the years but had never shown anyone. "Lets make an album with just 3 instruments, Piano, Cello and Viola - no drums, no bass", i said. "And i'd like to revisit my classical piano roots". After listening to the tunes, Greg dug out 2 books from his bookshelf : Women Poets of China and Lu Xun's Poems. Greg had spent some time in China and speaks some Mandarin. I'd always wanted to collaborate with him on an album with 'eastern' vibes. 

I'd also always wanted to work with this amazing lady, Melbourne cellist/composer Caerwen Martin

Over the next 2 years,  Greg, Caerwen and I shared cups of tea, made demos and pondered over manuscripts. Louise Woodward jumped on board on viola. 

I pretended to play cello to show Caerwen what i was after...


Here's the album, explained via Venn diagram. OH YEAH...I LOVE A SEXY VENN. 

This is me, age 7, in Singapore. Thanks mum, for my bowl haircut. 

And these are the piano books that heavily influenced this album.  John Thompson's Grade 1 piano book and Bela Bartoks's Mikrokosmos. Oh how i love Bartok and his hungarian folk tunes. 


We recorded in my lounge room. We cleared the furniture and turned them into sound barriers. 


YAMAHA pianos kindly lent me grand piano for ONE MONTH! Thank you Yamaha! This is how they wheeled it in....SCARY. 


This is me, looking worried during a recording session....


I yoyo-ed between these 2 states of mind


We also did lots of days at Greg's home studio in Jumbunna, Gippsland. I was so TIRED during this particular session..a few days later, i found out i was pregnant! 

Greg, amongst many other things, is the composer for Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries on ABC TV and he learnt to play clarinet for the show.  We decided to sprinkle a bit of clarinet throughout my new album. This is Greg, looking quite perplexed by what i've asked him to play. 

We decided to record MORE strings in a bigger room to achieve a wider, warmer sound so we hired a school hall in Korumburra for a few days.      " More strings, WE NEED MORE STRINGS," said Greg.  


This is the team! Louise, me, Greg, Caerwen


Oh, and this is my MUM! She never told me she made a vinyl record back in Malaysia when she was young, 'til i found this photo just 2 years ago! ?! This photo was supposed to be for her album cover !! But the vinyl got damaged in a flood. 


MUSIC VIDEOS: 

(2 in production)


YELLOW ROSE:  I am so fortunate to be collaborating with a young Melbourne animator Mr Xin Li. Xin uses a rare animation technique of painting onto glass, frame by frame. It's a time consuming job but so beautiful. Xin was trained in western oil painting as well as Chinese brush painting. His animation is going to be perfect for this song! 



TIGER NOT THE HARE:  We had an overnight crazy adventure in a Footscray boxing gym recently. With Cesar Rodrigues, Tom Chapman at the helm, featuring dancer Lilian Steiner (my cousin!) Can't wait to see the finished product. 

TRACK LISTING: 

1. Paper Kites

2. Yellow Rose

3. Tiger Not the Hare 

4. Tiger Not the Hare (reprise)

5. Once a little Girl

6. Paper Kites (reprise)

7. I want to Dance

8. Play with Gold

9. 橄榄树 Gān Lăn Shù

10. Green Bird on the Maple Tree

11. 她的美 (Tā Dè Měi) Her Beauty

12. I want to Dance (reprise)

13. Gold Noodle

14. Song for the Birds


REWARDS: 

  • ALL REWARDS $15+ includes the whole album emailed to you as MP3 download. 
  • Postage & handling are INCLUDED for Australia. Note additional for outside Australia. 

How The Funds Will Be Used


Production, Publicity & Promotion 


I will need $16K to get this album out into the world. I will have enough to cross the line if $10K is raised. If we achieve ABOVE this, i will be able to get this album off and running properly! 


**I am working with Melbourne's community of independent graphic designers, photographers, animators, music engineers, cinematographers etc. Most of these creatives work from their own homes (most are mums and dads!) and are working with me on a modest fee. Your pledge will also support these talented creatives**


I have already spent $13,800 on the recording and mixing of the album (studio time, musician fees, producer fees etc). 

Creative Victoria has kindly funded 12K of this. 

The Challenges

I've always been an entirely self-funded musician. Making an album has always been a financial challenge. I guess this is why it's taken 4-5 years for me to make a new album.


Being independent also means i'm in charge of everything, from writing Arts Grant applications, building the website, organising gigs, running posters off to the printers, balancing the books, and all the admin. 


Making an album AND raising a young baby shouldn't really go together either. I shall be balancing baby, cash, music, sleep deprivation, dishes and laundry. The only way i'm getting this record out in to the world is by doing a little bit every day, making lots of lists and ticking them off slowly.  I'll be patting myself on the back and dancing in the street when this album is finally pushed out into the universe! 

Successful
on 30th Dec 2016 at 7:00am. The payment portal is closed now.
AU$1 +I just wanna supportThank You. You can enter ANY amount above $1. All pledges $15 or more will receive the whole album as Mp3 download.
2 Chosen | Unlimited AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$15 +Digital onlyWhole album on Mp3 * ALL REWARDS ($15+ or more) will receive the whole album as Mp3 download too.
49 Chosen | Unlimited AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$30 +CDPersonalised signed. CD features illustrations by Sophie, song lyrics, personal photographs and other important details that made this album!
46 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$50 +All GoneCD + tote bagPersonalised signed. CD features illustrations by Sophie, song lyrics, personal photographs and other important details that made this album! + Tote Bag (100% recycled polyester, durable) Limited edition tote bag features prints of Sophie's hand-drawn cover art!
26 Chosen | 0 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$60 +All GoneVINYLPersonalised signed. Vinyl features illustrations by Sophie, song lyrics, personal photographs and other important details that made this album!
20 Chosen | 0 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$80 +ALBUM & SHOWGuaranteed ticket to Sophie's album launch concert at Melbourne Recital Centre 25 March 2017, 7pm. + Personalised signed CD or Vinyl (please add $20 for Vinyl) Collect at venue on March 25
23 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is March 2017
AU$80 +VINYL & Tote Bag - New Reward!Personalised signed. Vinyl features illustrations by Sophie, song lyrics, personal photographs and other important details that made this album. + Tote Bag (100% recycled polyester, durable) Limited edition tote bag features prints of Sophie's hand-drawn cover art.
1 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$100 +Sophie packPersonalised signed CD or Vinyl (please add $20 for Vinyl) + Tote Bag (100% recycled polyester, durable) + Spiral Notebook called 'Book of Songs' (120 page) with a handwritten message from Sophie Limited Edition Tote Bag and Notebook features prints of Sophie's hand-drawn cover art!
12 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$150 +Handwritten Lyrics in NotebookYou will own a limited-edition 120 page spiral notebook called ' Book of Songs' with album cover print as the cover. Sophie will handwrite the lyrics of the ENTIRE album, scattered throughout the book. + CD or Vinyl (add $20 for Vinyl) *Perfect gift for a creative friend, loved one or offspring!
4 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is March 2017
AU$200 +THE ULTIMATE BENEFACTORYour name credited in a special section of the album booklet with a big fat *THANK YOU* + personalised signed CD or Vinyl (Vinyl no extra cost)
9 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is February 2017
AU$350 +I'M WITH THE BAND *Kids welcomeYou + friend on the guest list at Sophie's album launch concert, Melbourne Recital Centre March 25, 2017. 7pm Beforehand, hang with Sophie and the other musicians during soundcheck (3-5pm). You'll get special insight into what happens before a gig. Watch us rehearse. *Kids welcome* Watch the album come to life with your reserved front row seats at the show! + 2 X personalised signed CD or Vinyl Collect at the venue on March 25
1 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is March 2017
AU$500 +Cover song of YOUR choiceSophie will do an acoustic cover of a song for YOU or a loved one. Sophie will take time to record it her way and send it to you on Mp3 or upload on Youtube. + signed CD or Vinyl If queries, please say hello at sophiekoh.com
0 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2017
AU$1000 +HOUSE CONCERTSophie and string players play an intimate 1 hr concert in your own lounge room! + signed CD or vinyl Travel + accom additional if 50km outside Melbourne. Interstate & international welcome. If queries, please say hello at sophiekoh.com
0 Chosen | 2 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2017
AU$2500 +A VERY SPECIAL MALAYSIAN FEAST*You provide the house, drinks and friends. Myself and string players will play an intimate gig in your lounge, followed by a home-cooked Malaysian Feast by me ( and my folks ) Yes, my parents. They used to run a Malaysian restaurant. I promise, you won't regret it. Beef rendang anyone? Strictly 10 people max for dinner. ALL 10 receive CD or Vinyl. *Melbourne only If queries, please say hello at sophiekoh.com
0 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is July 2017
AU$5000 +Executive ProducerYour name printed on CD and Vinyl artwork (in your own special spot) as my wiz-bang Executive Producer. + Signed CD or Vinyl + ANY one of the other rewards If queries, please say hello at sophiekoh.com
0 Chosen | 1 AvailableEst. delivery is March 2017