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DAVID ARCHULETA

Archive for the ‘Chile’ Category

The Fight For Balance Within ~ New Blog by David Archuleta

Posted by bebereader on Wednesday, February 10, 2016

poco balanceart edit credit pocoelsy

It’s been a long time since I’ve done a blog.

I have to admit, it has felt kind of nice.  Not because I don’t like connecting with all of you.  But more to stop worrying about what everyone else thinks.  I haven’t posted as often on Instagram and Twitter as I would before, but that has also felt really nice as well.  Not because I don’t like sharing, but it’s because I have a tendency to get caught up in what everyone thinks about what I’m doing.  I’ve learned to enjoy the moment and the people that I’m with, rather than think “Oh yeah, I’m supposed to be showing everyone my life and how great it is.” and “I’d get more followers if I post more of this.” Or “The more of my face in the photo the more likes it’ll get.” (I talked about this in my last blog, but will expand on it a little more today.)

I will say every now and then I like to share moments, quotes, thoughts (And honestly I think it is fun to post photos and videos occasionally) but afterwards I feel a little overwhelmed.  I think it’s from my nature that I’ve always been someone who likes to keep to himself and stay away from attention.

People say “Well you picked the wrong career for that, buddy.”  But I’d disagree. We all have obstacles we face.  Life is designed to give us hurdles that would keep us from following our dreams, keep us from making new memories, and from being happy if we choose to let fear run its course in us and always take the path of least resistance.  But life is made that way because happiness and satisfaction come from accomplishing things that we think are beyond our limits.  How many of you have done something that you didn’t want to do because you didn’t think you could and felt nervous, and afterward felt so good and satisfied for now having accomplished something you didn’t think you were capable of?  It really is designed that way for a reason.

Just because I don’t like attention doesn’t mean I don’t like singing.  I’d sing for everyone all of the time if I could be off the stage, unnoticed and still give everybody the experience of feeling better and more motivated after listening.  But I’ve been given the challenge.  I find so much joy from keeping to myself to give me time to meditate and be still in an inconspicuous world, but I also find joy in sharing with as many people as possible the things that make me happy.

DavidArchuletaChileGirl

I found an interesting balance of the two of these while I was a mormon missionary in Chile for 2 years from March 2012-March 2014.  I could walk around the streets talking to every type of person you could meet: old and young, wealthy and poor, content and depressed—You name it.  I love people.  I love hearing their stories.  I love sharing with them things that I feel can motivate them to become their best selves.  Sharing my beliefs and the things that filled my soul without expecting to get anything back felt amazing.

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Hardly anyone ever recognized me down in Chile for my music career, but I would sing for just about everyone I met.  Many of them worked in the Chilean copper mines, while many others worked in the fruit fields.  Others were teachers, students, security guards, small business owners, etc.  I’d sing for people on the streets, in their homes or in their yards.  For some reason I had some of the most fulfilling performances of my life singing for 1 or 2 people at a time, without the applause or notoriety of crowds—No way of keeping track of social media’s hits/likes/views.  I realized music could touch me and them the same way it could having a special musical moment on TV in front of millions of people.  For some reason, that moment of satisfaction isn’t about the numbers.  It’s about that moment being real and honest regardless if it’s singing for 1 person or 1 million people. Whether it’s singing for the president of the United States or the old widow at the end of the street who lives by herself, it’s all about that moment of connecting person to person, along with this connection originating from something greater than me from above.  I certainly believe it’s a connection with God.

So yes, it’s a challenge for me, but I don’t intend on giving up.  I’m trying to find the balance of living a life that’s meaningful to me both personally (in my quiet and simple world) and career-wise (as a performer and musician.)  Each aspect involves 2 principles: (1) loving people and (2) keeping that spiritual connection with God.

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I’ve been continuously writing and in the last couple of weeks have been looking for producers to work with.  I’m hoping I can work this time around with people who can keep me focused on the things I’ve told you about.  Talented people who are good at their craft but keep the focus on the simple but special moment, instead of the pursuit of being “the hippest, biggest, and greatest.”  To be honest it’s hard to keep that focus.  You get tempted to keep up with everyone and everything else because it looks amusing.  But learning from the past I know what that does does and doesn’t do for me.

Do any of you have conflicting aspirations or goals?  If you do, have any of you found a way to find a balance for them to work?  If you haven’t, I hope this helps you think twice, and as you make progress please share it.  You can share it here, and also be sure to share it with your family and friends.

yinyang

There’s a reason the contrast of yin and yang find a happy balance to create something greater than if they were separated.  I believe that balance comes from finding common ground, similar goals, and the same purpose.  It’s up to you and me to find the way to make that balance happen.

David

yinyang2

 Do the red and white in a pokeball count as showing balance too? (Gotta Catch ‘Em All)

Source:  http://davidarchuleta.com/home/the-fight-for-balance/

Posted in @DavidArchie, Balance, Blog, Chile, concerts, David Archuleta, music, Personal freedom, songwriting, The Voice | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 68 Comments »

Bluesky’s Luz De Las Naciones Adventure ~ David Archuleta

Posted by bebereader on Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Mormon NewsroomCredit: Mormon Newsroom

I have been working pretty steadily with few breaks. Last Friday afternoon I raised my head from in front of my computer, looked around the room and said to myself: I could be at the conference center tonight listening to Spanish music and DA! This could happen!

Of course I had no tickets. I have not been on the receiving end of tickets for events at the conference center for quite a while. There are so many offered and so many apply, that the odds are just not really good. But I have always (so far!) been able to attend if I was willing to go standby. I was. Of course!

So I dressed warmly, got a bottle of water, climbed in the car and headed out to begin the 30 minute drive to SLC. It was just after 5 pm. I hoped to get there by 5.30 or so and be at the head of the standby line which begins to form (officially) at 6.00 pm. For Christmas concerts, I have seen the line 50 – 80 people long by 6.10 and I wanted to avoid being at the back. I had heard that there was a big turnout for the Thursday dress rehearsal.

I made good time and arrived at Temple Square, by the Tabernacle, where the line usually begins. There was no one there. I realized I had not eaten. Small item overlooked. It was cold. I had at least a 2-hour wait.  None of my sons could come with me – too short notice.  I did end up eating— I wandered across the street to the big mall and got (ha, ha!) a frozen yogurt with bananas and blueberries. And a spoon. I don’t think I need to tell you how cold I got eating frozen yogurt while standing in front of the Tabernacle waiting for the line to begin.

Dayzee would have been proud. I was at the front of the line.

It turned out that the attendance was less on Friday than it had been on Thursday and although the wait was long, there was no trouble getting in. I met some very lovely people while waiting and we ended up sitting right in the center balcony three rows back. Great seats!

I had heard from the ushers that the attendance on Thursday was upwards of 40,000 people. The conference center holds about 21,000 seats. They put the rest of the people into the Tabernacle which they had fixed up with large screens and everything. It looked like every effort was taken to support whoever wanted to come, but I wanted to be in the same building. Of course.

There was a bit of drama because the ushers did not want us waiting in the cold. So they sat us in the Tabernacle in the order we came. One lady kept saying how this was bad and how this had happened to her more than once and that she had missed out on concerts because of this.  Nope. Not. Going. To. Happen.  I felt certain that I was there to hear DA and all the music and that was how it was going to be.

The concert was more than I had ever imagined. They have held these Spanish language concerts before, but I had never gone because of the way they were advertised so I did not know what to expect. I felt somehow that I would be taking the place of someone else who was “officially” Latin. But this time the advertising said that all were welcome. That was good enough for me.

Oh my! The music was amazing! The bands, the musicians, were wonderful. I loved the little older man who played what looked like a harp but sounded more like a xylophone. Everyone was clapping, moving, joining in however they could. I lost track of how many countries were represented, each with their own music, dance, traditions, etc.

I loved watching the people around me. Almost all the people there seemed to be families sitting together, grandparents on down to young children.  The Dad’s, kids, and all would inch forward until they were on the edge of their seats, bouncing, swaying, and leaning towards one another like they were all trees enjoying the same spot of sun.

I had a good view of the family right in front of me. The Dad got so excited that he spent almost the entire program on the edge of his seat. The times he sat back? When DA sang. I thought at first – maybe he doesn’t know or like DA? But then I saw how he clapped. For DA it was solid, firm, appreciative in admiration. It was just that DA’s songs were more laid back than almost all the rest of the program.

When the different countries were represented, you would hear calls and whistles from different parts of the audience, like they were cheering for their home team or for some participants that they knew. The people I sat by were there to support friends who were playing in the orchestra. I don’t think they knew much about DA.

But by the end of the program, they did.  Every time he came on stage he filled the center. It is not him, himself. It is like this globe of love, kindness, energy, anticipation, a conduit from another place, that slowly invites all around to join in “his” space. We are gently gathered, released, enlivened, restored, comforted and…. sang to!

It was an absolutely lovely evening. I am so thankful for all the hard work, love, and talent that went into the whole program. Where can one get that sort of experience for free?

DA, thank you so much for just being you. For being willing to be more than you are. For being willing to share, learn, serve, and….. sing your blessed little heart out.

After listening to him sing “His Hands” in Spanish, I could not ask for a better ending for my long week.

I. Am. Grateful.

All video credits: Pattycake04

Posted in @DavidArchie, Appreciation, Chile, concerts, David Archuleta, Devotional, fandom, GLORIOUS, recap, The Voice, Welcome Back | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 45 Comments »

David Archuleta: A New Song! Now A Morning Person! & Futbol!

Posted by djafan on Thursday, June 19, 2014

finished new song

 

Finished a new song with and @d this morning.

It’s nice to get a song done before noon. I feel refreshed. Thank you and for being morning people.

you’re not a morning person !

oh, yes I am!

AWESOME! Hey I thought you once said you don’t sing as well in the morning?

that’s different from writing in the morning. My mind is much more clear in the morning for ideas.

You’re a MORNING PERSON now ? Lol

after 2 years of never sleeping in, I have become a huge fan of how much easier it is to get things done in the mornings.

go chile jazzy dog david

Now time to spare to get ready for Chile vs. Spain!!! I’ve never felt this way before for sports.

Vamos Chile!!

GOAALLL!!! Yes Chile!!!!

Gracias Aranguiz! Chile 2-0 Spain

Congrats to Chile advancing on!! . Man, feel bad for Spain though. Rough year they’ve had.

futbol chile flag

GET READY FOR A TRENDING PARTY!

INOURHEARTS

Posted in @DavidArchie, Chile, David Archuleta, fillers, music, Musical icon, song writing, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 45 Comments »

David Archuleta ~ Ain’t No Sunshine When He’s Gone

Posted by djafan on Monday, March 10, 2014

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Art work by @GrayAAA

Just had my annual check up (preparation for David’s return) and my lab results were in every way perfect, except that apparently, I have absolutely no vitamin D in my body.  The normal levels range up in the 90’s and my level was so low as to not even rate a number.  I was not surprised by the news; the only light I have received for months is from the weak glow of my laptop.  It has been far too cold to venture outside for long and since sunlight is essential for acquiring this vital vitamin, I was instead prescribed massive doses of vitamin D.  That, along with the welcome promise of warm weather will soon put me right.  Yet the whole thing got me thinking about another deficiency in D that I have been suffering from for the past two years.  By that I mean vitamin David.  The symptoms for both are remarkably similar:  a general feeling of being tired and a tendency toward depression.  hmmm.  Coincidence?  I think not.  It appears I am in good company as a cursory scan of twitter revealed several others who feel that David is sunshine incarnate.

cheska @SnowyOli  2h

David archuleta is my sunshine <33

McKenzie Harris @McKenzieHarr  Feb 22

Don’t know how he does it but David Archuleta naturally exudes positivity. @DavidArchie’s Chinese name is sunshine. pic.twitter.com/phtHFMPqto

Francesca @FangirlFrance  Mar 3

The only motivation i have in life right now is David’s return. My sunshine will be back soon and that keeps me going.:) #DA2014

Barb W ‏@EL_FOD  Feb 28

David Archuleta Is Coming Home and that means winter will be over! Hello Sunshine!

Archugeezer ‏@Archugeezer  Feb 28

David Archuleta Is Coming Home at the right time ’cause we can sure use a little more sunshine right now.

Mary Dee ‏@GoodPlaceDA2014  Feb 28

Welcome back Mr. Sunshine!! David Archuleta Is Coming Home.

Pattie #DA2014 ‏@Attwittsend  Feb 28

I am freezing. David Archuleta Is Coming Home soon and I’m sure he’s bringing some sunshine with him:)

pattilou733 ‏@pattilou733  Feb 28

David Archuleta Is Coming Home.The sunshine is retuningto our lives.

Pattie #DA2014 ‏@Attwittsend  Feb 28

David Archuleta Is Coming Home … ♫ You are my sunshine ♫

Debbie #DA2014 ‏@DebVaFOD  Feb 28

@Attwittsend Awww. He IS sunshine. David Archuleta Is Coming Home:)

So it appears that many of us suffer from the same want:   A severe deficiency in vitamin D caused by a lack of David Archuleta, i.e., Mr. Sunshine.  There is no cure for ODD, but we know its cause and ODDly enough, it can only be managed with adequate exposure to it, uh, him.  In short, we need our sunshine.

daisy_sun_line

Songs – “You are my Sunshine” by Liliana Rose, “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles.”

Posted in @DavidArchie, @kariontour, Begin., Chile, David Archuleta, Mission, Personal freedom | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 71 Comments »

David Archuleta’s Announcement and My Own Personal Journey

Posted by bebereader on Monday, June 3, 2013

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I have avoided watching David’s “announcement video” for the longest time since that day we saw it together in real-time on Livestream. He was hurting, or so I thought and I couldn’t handle it. I couldn’t watch him being vulnerable in front of so many people. Most of all, it hurt me to see him cry.

How would I live without his shining force for two years?
How could I get through two years with no new music, I thought.
Two years is way too long to go without a concert.

It was all about me.

I know about milestones and rites of passage in one’s religion so I should have seen David’s mission announcement coming instead of hitting me from out of left field.

In my religion, for example, when a young person reaches 13 they are considered to have achieved spiritual maturity and are welcomed into adulthood by having a Bar Mitzvah or for a girl, a Bat Mitzvah. This important event is marked by being called to read from the Torah, which is the fundamental narrative of the Jewish religion. This is usually done in temple before family, friends and a congregation of people and the reading is done in the Hebrew language. In addition, they must learn to chant in the ancient melody. Hebrew is written in symbols, not letters in the printed version of the Bible and is very hard to learn. It often takes months or years to accomplish this at the same time they have their regular school studies. It’s considered an honor to fulfill all of the required duties which I have simplified here. There is also a community service requirement.  The Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony is a milestone life-cycle event in the life of a Jewish person and is the culmination of years of study.

Having had a chunk of time to reflect on all this, I realize how selfish it was to think of myself and how David’s leaving would affect me.

Last night I was on YouTube as I usually am, watching old concert footage. Instead of avoiding the mission announcement link, this time I clicked on it! I watched it 3x. I saw it differently this time than I did all those months ago. I didn’t see a hurting David baring his soul. I saw a brave young man who didn’t know how the audience would react to his announcement and when he heard applause, was so touched that it brought tears to his eyes. I saw a brave young man who had the difficult task of telling his fans that he was taking a temporary leave from his music career. It was hard for him but he had the strength to do it anyway. I saw someone who had the courage to be vulnerable and who shed tears of relief.

Video credit David Archuleta

Even in his absence David continues to inspire me. It may have taken me 15 months to have the courage to watch the “announcement video” but seeing his strength is making ME strong enough to wait out the days until he comes back home.

Posted in @DavidArchie, Chile, David Archuleta, Editorial, Mission, The Voice | Tagged: , , , , | 67 Comments »

David Archuleta and the People of Chile

Posted by bebereader on Saturday, April 27, 2013

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Since Elder Archuleta began serving a mission in Chile, I’ve been curious about the Chilean culture. I have already researched Chilean music, dance, foods and Chilean holidays. Now I’m curious about statistical information of Chile and what it’s like to live with the Chileans and their habits and customs. How does one go about finding this unless one travels to Chile?

Statistical information was easy enough to find; it came straight from Chilean websites and census data. For the real nitty gritty information, I searched through travelogues and blogs of foreign exchange students until I hit the jackpot! People actually keep records of their travel experiences. The quotes on various topics that I extracted from the blogs are in boxes.  Bloggers’ names have been omitted. Muchas gracias to those who unknowingly contributed.

Population: 17.27 million (2011) World Bank.  The population of Chile is expected to reach about 20.2 million by 2050.

The majority of the Chilean population live in the capital city of Santiago.

credit: syntagmafilm

Chile is one of the largest exporters of salmon. Chile also exports other fish, fruits, wine, chemicals, paper and copper.  Over 1/3 of the world’s copper production is produced in Chile.

Chile has one of the longest recorded dry spells in the Atacama Desert where it did not rain for 40 years.

Chile is a founding member of United Nations as well as of the Union of South American Nations.

Catholics make up 63% of the population. Protestants or Evangelical 15%.
Jehovah’s Witnesses comprise 1%. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 0.9%. Jews make up 0.4%. Atheists are 8.3%. Muslims 0.1% (From Census data 2011)

The Chilean Peso is the national currency of Chile and has been in circulation since 1975. One Chilean Peso is divided into 100 centavos.
One US dollar was worth 517 pesos in December 2011. (Imagine having to get used to using different money.)

The national sport of Chile is the Chilean Rodeo and is mainly practiced in rural areas. The most popular sport in Chile is what they call futbol but we call soccer.  The country stops when there is a soccer match and when they win, they go to Plaza Italia to celebrate. Chile has participated in the Olympics since its inauguration and has won 13 medals with tennis bringing in the most.

The literacy rate of Chile is 96.5%. The government provides free and compulsory education to citizens up to the age of eighteen. Chile has a large, well-educated middle class. Education is emphasized as a means to a better life, and the majority of young people earn a high school diploma.

The official language is Spanish; the one used is Chileno which is a mix of slang taken from old sayings and some American-Chilenisms like “Cachai“, which means do you understand or do you get it, coming from the American word “catch”.

On Language
“The Spanish is the worst!! I don´t want to speak like a Chilean but after being here for over a year everything I say ends in “kchay” and I can´t say “sí” or “no” – it´s “sip” o “nopo”.

credit: englishopensdoors

Chileans are a friendly bunch of people! The common greeting among friends and relatives is the abrazo, which is a hug and a handshake, sometimes with a kiss on the right cheek for women. It is repeated when saying goodbye. When conversing, Chileans tend to stand much closer to one another than in North Americas do. The common greetings are “¿Qui’ubo?” (What’s up?), “¿Como esta?“ (How are you?), “Gusto de verte“ (Nice to see you).

credit: jorge stepankowsky

In Chile, the custom is to give a child the last names of both the father and the mother, although the father’s name is the official one. The paternal surname comes first, followed by the maternal surname. (Example: David James Archuleta Mayorga)  Children are addressed either by using both names or by using only the father’s name. Wives keep their maiden names in addition to their husbands’ and they are also known by both names, although they sometimes prefer to use only their husbands’ name.

Avocados (“palta”) are plentiful in Chile and are added to any kind of burger, sandwich or hot dog. The very popular “Italiano” hot dog has ketchup or chopped tomatoes, mayonnaise and avocado on it.

On Italiano Hot Dogs
“And then there’s the combination of 3 ingredients, such as tomato, avocado, mayonnaise simply abbreviated as “italiano,” due to the 3 colors of the Italian flag (red, green and white). Once you know that, you can ask for any kind of sandwich and add “italiano” without any further explanation.”

credit Japi O

On Bread
“How much bread do Chileans eat? Two buns in the morning, one in lunch time, two or more at “Once” (pronounced own- say)…yeah that is a lot of bread. The toppings for bread: the regular stuff: butter, pate, scrambled eggs, jam, avocado…WHAT? yes, avocado, they eat it smashed with salt and oil. Bread with avocado is a 80′s classic and one of my favorites.”

“Chile has many kinds of bread, and the most common are “frica” (like a hamburger bun, but better), “molde” (typical slice), “marraqueta” (a crusty roll made with French bread dough, “hallulla” and “pan amasado” (both made with lard). Once I was eating one of these delights in Dominó (restaurant) when a guy from another Spanish-speaking country came in. When he finally decided from among beef, chicken, pork, tomato, avocado, bell pepper, mayonnaise, etc., the waiter asked:

“Fricamoldemarraqueta?”

“Huh?” asked the bewildered foreigner.

“FRI- CA- MOL- DE- MA- RRA- QUE- TA,” repeated the waiter, trying to be clearer.

By that time I was already well initiated in the ways of bread and was able to explain, “There are 3 types of bread, you need to choose one.” How was he supposed to choose when he had never even heard of a marraqueta or frica? But in the end, he loved the sandwich.”

On Onces
“Onces—or tea is a Chilean gastronomic institution. Inspired by the British tea, people gather in the early evening (mostly on weekends these days) to “ruin their dinner” (yikes, I’m channeling my mother!) for a carb fest of sandwiches (ham, cheese, and avocado are customary) and/or toast and jam, cookies, cake, and even ice cream (surprisingly often in reverse order). Oh, and the cup of tea is placed in front of you with the plate of food behind it, so that all the crumbs fall into the cup. Don’t try and change it around. It’s no use.”

On Coffee
“Most Chileans tend to drink instant coffee at home (Nescafé, sometimes referred to by purists as “no-es-café” – it is not coffee). When they go out, they drink “café café” (coffee-coffee) to explain that this is not regular coffee (which would be Nescafé) but rather REAL coffee. And it will probably come in a very small (demitasse) cup and often includes a small glass of soda water and a couple of little butter cookies on the side. If you go to a coffee shop they’ll ask if you want “express” (espresso), cortado (café con leche), or capucchino…”

credit: tintoweno

On Shopping
“Security rules in Chile can make shopping complicated. In small stores, shoppers must ask for what they want instead of taking it off the shelves themselves. Then they are given a paper with a description of the product. They take the paper to the cash register to pay for the item and go to another part of the store to pick up the item.”

On Things that upset Chileans
“Not wearing shoes at home.”
“Wandering around with wet hair upsets Chileans because they believe it causes you to catch a cold.”
“Saying that you don’t like sandwiches. Chileans love sandwiches, or “sánguches” in the local vernacular. They eat them for breakfast, onces (tea), snacks, and late-night noshing.”

On Dogs
“Chileans seem to have another kind of relationship with animals. It’s a live-and-let-live laissez faire attitude that endows domestic animals with the same apparent right to share public space as birds, squirrels (which, by the way, don’t exist in Chile), and, of course, humans.”

“Chilean dogs are often free to come and go as they please, and as a result, really don’t seem to care much about what anyone else is doing, and vice versa. Dogs are an extremely common sight on busy city streets and parks. Even the Plaza de la Constitución, in front of La Moneda, the presidential palace, is full of dogs—some with collars (i.e. owners), some without—that spend the entire day playing in the park and rarely seem to notice the hordes of tourists or uniformed officers or speech-making dignitaries or marching protesters or snuggling couples who want to share their space. Cats and dogs often wander in and out of casual restaurants. They are rather good-natured and healthy looking pooches, deep-snoozin’ on busy downtown street corners as pedestrians just step over or around them.”

TMB

“Leash laws—if they exist, I’ve never been able to tell— are not enforced. Dogs are allowed to “go out and play,” snooze when they’re tired, and come home when they get hungry. The streets are full of dogs just hanging out, having a good time, and generally not bothering anyone…By the way… the stereotypical dog’s name in Chile? Not Rover, or Spot, or Fido (have you ever really known one of those?)… The quintessential Chilean dog’s name is Bobby! (pronounced BO-bee)”

Chileans are passionate and fun loving people. I wonder if Elder Archuleta has picked up any Chilean customs or affectations. If I ever get the opportunity to visit South America, my first stop would be Chile. Of course my Spanish would be rusty but after reading so much about the country there is now a familiarity that exists for me, if only virtually. And I can’t shake the thought of seeing David, strolling down the street in Santiago, eating an Italiano hotdog.:)

Posted in Chile, David Archuleta, The Voice, Travelogue | Tagged: , , , , , | 90 Comments »

Dear Elder Archuleta

Posted by ronaleem on Thursday, February 21, 2013

elder-archuleta-12-2012

I wrote a letter to Elder Archuleta!

When I made my first comment on The Voice on January 9, explaining—or maybe I should say, exclaiming—my discovery of David, both Abrra and Dayzee urged me to write him a letter.  That was a novel thought.  David was brand new to me, I knew nothing about him, and I had no idea what I could even say.  I had never written a fan letter in my life, unless you count my letter to the Mattel Toy Company back in the late 1950’s thanking them for my Shirley Temple doll.  So, I’m thinking, are they serious about me writing him a letter?

I mulled it over for quite a while, and then during one of many sleepless nights, I started it.  False start.  So I mulled it over some more and got back to it about a week later.  This time it flowed pretty well.  I told him I wanted to thank him for sharing his singing talent with the world and for serving a mission.   Then like a good English major, I stuck to my two main points and kept it one page long.  How can one page adequately thank someone for the profound effect they’ve had on your life?

Three days before Christmas, I had only the vaguest idea who David Archuleta was.  Two days before Christmas, I became acquainted with him as I watched his performance with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

Video credit MormonTabChoir

I was blindsided!  The music was so compelling I couldn’t stop listening!  When I could finally tear myself away from this Christmas concert, I found the Christmas concert from Chile and I was even more enraptured.  A glorious voice had suddenly shown up in my life.  It pierced my heart and saturated my soul with music.  I was filled with light and I felt like fire was shooting from my fingertips!

Video credit Alejandro Angulo

This glorious voice came from David, who was a most endearing young man in the first concert, and a humble missionary in the second.  In both concerts, he sang several songs celebrating the birth of Jesus.  What struck me forcefully was that he wasn’t just singing the words, but that he believed what he was singing.  His facial expressions, his emotion, his joy, and the power–and at the same time, the tenderness–of his voice, all revealed a devotion to God.  This is what drew me to him, because I had just had a spiritual reawakening after years of depression, sadness, and slogging through life at half-power.

So, in my letter, I told him how his singing had come at the end of a year of physical, emotional, and spiritual healing for me.  In one dramatic and very sweet moment, his singing had cleared my heart of the remaining bits and pieces of junk that were still in there.  My heart had been healed and was now able to absorb light, and to give and to receive love.  I believe anyone or anything could have finished healing my heart.  But it was David who did it, and for that I am very grateful.

I thanked him for sharing his talent.  Although David sings to the world, he also sings to the individual, which is the reason I have had this marvelous experience for myself.  I have puzzled over what it is exactly that he gives the world.   It took me awhile, but I have an explanation that works for me–love.  As I was being healed spiritually and my heart was being opened, I was able to feel God’s love all around me.  I believe this love is always there, but we have to be open to receiving it.  I think David is very open to God’s love, absorbs it, and reflects it back to anybody else who is receptive.  David’s music carries this love to the willing listener, with all sorts of favorable outcomes.  In the past two months, I’ve read several accounts which are similar to mine.  Burdens of sadness, despair, loss, any number of difficult circumstances, are all made tolerable or even healed by David’s music.

I also thanked him for serving a mission.  My own healing has been facilitated by the love, concern, and teaching of several missionaries over the past year.  As these young men have taught me, I have had to marvel at their maturity, their commitment, and the pure love they have for others.  Based on my experience with them, I am able to imagine what Elder Archuleta’s life as a missionary is like.  I am fascinated by this aspect of him, because missionaries have become very dear to my newly tender heart.  I am positive Elder Archuleta is having an experience in personal growth that could not come in any other way.  I didn’t tell him this, but I am in awe of the person he is now, and even more in awe of the person he is becoming.   He will still be David when he returns, but a more refined and a deeper David.  I can’t wait to hear the music that will come from him then!

I mailed my letter at the very beginning of February.  If it got to Florida on time, it’s probably lost in a package of valentines and well-wishes for his new album.  I have seriously wondered if he would even read my letter, but I’ve been assured that he does try to read everything he gets.  That makes me feel sort of weird.  Here I am listening to his music as I write this, and he might actually read my letter!  I’m talking about the same person who, as a teenager, came in second on American Idol; who, as a sweet-faced young man, sings “Forevermore;” and who, as a very handsome young man, models in the Bench photo shoot (there are no words!).  This person is famous and known by millions of people all over the world.  I can’t fathom that he would actually handle the letter I handled—it’s too surreal.  But the missionary currently serving in Chile, yes, I could see him handling my letter, reading it, and appreciating where I’m coming from.

Posted in Chile, David Archuleta, Devotional, music | Tagged: , , , | 50 Comments »

Sightseeing Through Chile For Elder Archuleta

Posted by bebereader on Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Fotochile23_Photo

There are wondrous places in Chile that Elder Archuleta most probably will not get to see while busy on his mission. Perhaps he will make a trip back there one day in the future to visit more of this beautiful country that he will have spent two years of his life.

Chile is a country of extreme contrasts from volcanoes of the Andes Mountains to ancient rainforests and from the Atacama Desert in the north to massive glaciers in the south. In between these areas are waterfalls, beaches, lakes, rivers, forests and islands.  If you visit the north, south, east and west of Chile in one day you have the possibility of experiencing all four seasons. With these unusual changes in temperature and weather, Chile attracts thousands of tourists each year. If you’ve ever wondered how long Chile is, it’s approximately the length from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean or from the west coast to the east coast of the U.S. And at it’s widest point, it stretches for only 112 miles.

Come with me to do some virtual sightseeing through Chile to find places that David may want to visit should he decide to return. Aside from the tourist attractions which look awesome, by the way, there are some not as famous places that David may find appealing, too.

The penguins of Punta de Arenas

Punta Arenas in Magdalena Island, a popular tourist attraction in Chile has one of the largest penguin breeding sites. The island was named a national nature reserve because many years ago, commercial fishing in this area caused the penguin population to decline. But through a ban on commercial fishing, penguins were protected and penguin populations have increased.

Every fall, penguins leave the safety of the ocean, their natural habitat, and march for twenty days to a place called “Oamack”. That’s where they choose their mates, procreate, protect and feed their offspring and after a while they return to the sea. Later, their babies go to the ocean, where they stay for four years, and when they reach their adult life, they follow the same pattern of their parents. →   These creatures are a sight to behold!

Easter Island and the Moais, the giant volcanic rock statues

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Easter Island, a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean between Chile and Tahiti and now a national park was isolated for centuries from the outside world. Stumbled upon by Dutch settlers on Easter in 1772, the majority of the population are original inhabitants, Rapanui people, who developed their own distinctive culture best known by the moai, huge statues with elongated faces carved out of volcanic ash thousands of years ago. How and why the moai were built is a mystery. Each one weighs over 20 tons and is about 70 feet tall.  There are hundreds of them on the island, some in rows, others laying broken on the ground. Some say Easter Island is the most enchanting place in the world place to watch the sunset. There are other activities to do on Easter Island, like going to the beach, taking a tour of the volcanic craters, diving and surfing.

Cerro San Cristóbal

Cerro San Cristobel, Chile

Cerro San Cristóbal is a hill in Santiago, the capitol of Chile, with a beautiful view overlooking the city and, on a clear day, the Andes Mountains. At the top of the hill is a 72 foot statue of the Virgin Mary that can be reached by cable car or a long hike. I doubt that Elder Archuleta has had a chance to hike or take a ride on a cable car to see the view in Santiago. Cerro San Cristóbal has Santiago’s largest public park with a botanical garden and zoo.

World’s Largest Swimming Pool

You don’t have to be a swimmer to be curious about this, the world’s largest man-made outdoor pool at a resort in Algarrobo, a small town on Chile‘s central coast. The pool is the size of  20 Olympic-sized swimming pools! It’s filled with 66 million gallons of crystal clear seawater that it gets from the ocean and it’s warmth from the sun. It was listed officially as the largest (3/5 of a mile) and the deepest (115 feet) swimming pool in the Guinness Book of World Records in December of 2006.  Why build a pool right near the ocean? Simple. The water in the nearby coast is cold and dangerous. Swimming is prohibited.

Credit: theamazingnewsdotcom

The 6000 foot granite walls of Torres del Paine National Park
The 6000ft granite walls of Torres del Paine

Torres Del Paine is a national park located in the south of Chile, The park‘s main attraction are the three giant granite peaks that were carved out by glaciers. The peaks rise 8200 feet above ground. The park has dramatic landscapes, lakes, mountains, glaciers, valleys and forests with exotic birds roaming the area. It’s also popular for hiking and rock climbing. Because of it’s beauty, this park is referred to as “heaven on earth”.

Valle Nevado in the Andes Mountains

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Does David ski or snowboard? I don’t know but the most popular skiing resort in South America is in Chile and draws skiers from all over the world, equipped with bilingual experts, not that David would need one. A helicopter drops skiers from the top of the mountain for a ride down the hill.

Valle de la Luna

Valle de la Luna

Valle de la Luna is located in the Atacama Desert, some parts of which have not received rain in 200 or more years. This scene is the result of centuries of wind and floods on sand and stone. The large sand dunes and stone formations mimic the surface of the moon, and gave the area it’s name which translated means “Valley of the Moon”.

The Viña del Mar International Song Festival

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I think David would enjoy this song festival held annually during February since 1960 in Viña del Mar, Chile. It is considered the most important musical event in South America. It competes in two categories, pop music and folk songs, interspersed with performances by artists from all over the world.

Villarica Volcano

The active Volcán Villarica, just outside of Pucón

This snow-capped volcano looks harmless but it is active. When there’s no seismic activity in the crater, visitors can make their way up to the top either by hiking or on a guided tour. For a close look into the bubbling volcano, helicopters fly overhead regularly.  It takes 4 to 6 hours to get up and then down this volcano. The way down is a combination of sledding and walking.

The glaciers of Tierra Del Fuego

Perito Moreno

The Tierra Del Fuego or “Land of Fire” got it’s name from Ferdinand Magellan who spotted fires burning along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean in 1520. Tierra Del Fuego is an archipelago (an expanse of water with many scattered islands) near Antarctica, comprised by channels and lakes, the ocean, forests and the Andes Mountains. The climate is windy with much rainfall and cold but warmer than one would assume.  In winter, the average temperature 28 Fahrenheit. In summer, it rarely rises far beyond 50 Fahrenheit.

The House of Eleven Women

original

Angelica found this and passed it along to me.  Casa 11 Mujeres is a house on top of a cliff near Santiago built to fit a family with eleven daughters, from age four to twenty. Built on a 45 degree slope, the house is actually a vacation home that stands on a site sloping down with a view of Cachagua Beach on the Pacific Ocean. It has three levels and space for entertaining.

I’m sure Elder Archuleta has already learned about many of these places when talking to local Chileans and to people he’s met on his mission.  He’s probably learned of these and many more. The combination of historical places, cultural sites and natural wonders  make Chile a special place for relaxation, fun and learning. The beautiful beaches, ski resorts and mountain range add to the appeal. If he chooses to visit Chile again in the future, he is sure to have a memorable experience.

credit: Chiletravelchannel

Posted in Chile, David Archuleta, The Voice, Travelogue | Tagged: , , , | 122 Comments »

The Effect of Chilean Dancing on Man-in-the-Making David Archuleta

Posted by bebereader on Monday, November 19, 2012


Gif by ADRM-X titled “Dancing Sun”

Article title pilfered from the Pulitzer Prize winning play, “The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds.”

When the words “dancing” and “Chile” are in the same sentence, visions of David dancing Salsa onstage at the JAS Arena in Rancagua come to mind, thanks to Gladys’ brilliant recap. But I learned that while Salsa and Tango may be popular dances in Latin America, they are not the only options.

Like all cultures, Chileans engage in popular and traditional folk dancing to celebrate cultural rituals. Chile prides itself on a traditional dance called “la Cueca” which became the national dance in 1979. Done at weddings, parties, and family gatherings, la cueca is taught to kids in elementary schools in Chile. Dance is an important part of Chilean culture.

The Cueca dancers dress in traditional colorful costumes with men in cowboy hats, horse riding pants, short jackets and riding boots with spurs. Women wear flowered dresses with aprons. They wave handkerchiefs in the air, mimicking playful romantic courting between a hen and a rooster. The character of the male performer is the aggressor and the female performer is  elusive and demure.

The choreography of the Cueca is what makes it so appealing. Clap, clap, step, step, swing that handkerchief over your head… don’t fall, step again, now circle your partner… forward, back and pretend you’re a hen…There is an imaginary circle with the male performer in one half and the female in the other. In sync with the background music, the dance always starts with the man extending his arm as an offer to the woman to dance with him. The dance partners stand face to face at a distance from each other. Before the couple starts to dance, they begin clapping their hands to the music. Subtly flirtatious, couples move around each other in circles but all of the flirting is done with eye contact and body movement. There is barely any touching in this dance.

La Cueca is performed at every important festival in Chile, especially on September 18, Chilean Independence Day.  Elder Archuleta could not have missed native Chileans performing this dance on that day.

There are other dances that are specific to different parts of Chile. In the north they celebrate the Fiesta de La Tirana in which the dancers wear demonic masks. In central Chile la Cueca rules and different variations of it are done. In Santiago the the peasant style, ballroom style and the Cueca Brava dominate. In the south there are religious Mapuche dances such as the Nguillatún and the Machitún in which prayers are offered to the supreme god Ngenechen and to the sacred canelo tree. A little farther south, among fishermen and farmers, the steps are livelier, to shake away the cold. In the Costillar dance, two men compete, dancing around a bottle placed in the middle of the dance floor, and the one who kicks the bottle over is the loser.

In October 2011, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Chile celebrated it’s fifty year anniversary of formal missionary work. Members gathered at a week-long celebration to commemorate the event. They celebrated in part by doing traditional dances of the country. The dances start at 1:15 in this video and at 2:50 there’s even a dance that resembles the Mexican Hat Dance.

Video courtesy of Mormon Channel/YouTube

The Chileans are passionate, colorful and religious people. They show this in their music and dance which are both integral parts of their culture. And here comes that vision of David dancing Salsa again.  Ay Carumba!

Posted in Chile, Dance, David Archuleta | Tagged: , , | 56 Comments »

By Special Invitation, Gladys went to Chile! ~ David Archuleta

Posted by bebereader on Monday, October 15, 2012

Original by Matt Clayton

 By Abrra and Bebereader

You had to be there on Saturday night to witness the absolute joy and passion from Gladys in reaction to the Musica Pop concert she attended by special invitation from the Senior Elders in Chile. The performers were Elder Archuleta on vocals and Elder Coello on piano. If you were lucky enough to secure a “seat” in The Voice Unplugged then you were privy to the excitement.

Gladys arrived to a room packed full of fans, waiting on the edge of our seats to see her, to hear every little detail of her experience, and then some. Let’s face it, we are missing David so much that it hurts and Gladys, who was so tired from her trip was full of energy as she spoke to us in-depth. She was generous of heart to follow with a question/answer session and we hung onto every word. We are, after all, a very inquisitive bunch! Abrra diligently copied excerpts from the chat text for you to read. Here is Djafan’s translation as it appears in the actual chat text, in upper case letters. Gladys will, of course, follow up with her own recap.

Gladys’ two-sentence recap:

I’M GOING TO SHARE IN GENERAL THINGS TO SWEETEN THINGS A BIT. HE SANG IMAGINE, DANCED SALSA, A SONG BY CELIA CRUZ, AND DANCED LIKE TO AL JOLSON

Size of crowd

TEN CHAIRS AT EACH SIDE, 20 ROWS AND MORE PEEPS IN THE BACK (400+ attended)

How he looked, what he wore

…DAVID IS STILL BEAUTIFUL AS EVER

WHEN I SAW DAVID DANCING AND SINGING, I SWEAR I THOUGHT OF TELLING EVERYONE THAT HE HAS GROWN, HIS CONFIDENCE IS HUGE, ON STAGE TRANSFORMS. TIMID NOT, IT DIDN’T EVEN EXIST.

HE SMILED AND ALL THE TIME SAID THAT HE WAS HOT

LAUGHED  A LOT AND HE IS NO LONGER LOOKING THIN
HE LOOKS GOOD AND SOME HAS GROWN, BIGGER BODY

HE DID THIS ALL DANCING IN A SUIT, MY GOD, I CRIED. THE GIRL NEXT TO ME DID TOO. WE COULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT WE WERE WATCHING, WE COULD NOT BELIEVE WHAT WE WERE SEEING.

TIE WAS TURQUOISE ♥

Language he spoke and sang

DAVID ALMOST NEVER SPOKE ENGLISH, HE SPOKE IN SPANISH

IT WAS ALL IN SPANISH, HE DID NOT SPEAK ANYTHING IN ENGLISH, GAVE A SPEECH IN PERFECT SPANISH.

HE SPEAKS IT REAL GOOD EXCEPT FOR SOME WORDS. HE GAVE A TALK ABOUT HIS DECISION IN SPANISH

WHEN HE FINISHED SINGING, HE SAID THAT IN HIS COUNTRY, THE AUDIENCE HE ASKED FOR MORE BUT DID NOT KNOW HOW SOME THINGS WERE SAID IN SPANISH

What he sang

HE SANG MANY HYMNS AT THE BEGINNING. WE WERE SCOLDED BECAUSE WE CLAPPED AND SCREAMED, BUT THEN IT COULDN’T BE HELPED.

AS A TRIBUTE TO THE ELDERS HE SANG DIXIE,  DOWN TO AL JOLSON AND KNEELED. DAVID WAS ON FIRE WHEN HE DANCED SALSA.

THE WHITE HAT HE WORE TO SING THE SONG OF AL JOLSON, WHEN HE FINISHED HE THREW THE HAT TO THE PUBLIC. I HAVE NEVER SEEN HIM LIKE THIS.

ALSO SANG IMAGINE AND THOUSAND MILES. HE ALSO SANG  HERO AND DREAM A MORNING IN SPANISH.  HE  SANG AN ARGENTINIAN SONG, I WAS UNCONSCIOUS, CALLED “THANKS TO LIFE”. IT’S A BEAUTIFUL SONG.

HE SANG ITS WONDERFUL WORLD!!!!!!!!!!!!

HE SANG A SONG FROM THE MOVIE ROCKY, THE ORIGINAL SONG. PROBABLY EYE OF THE TIGER
WHEN HE WAS SINGING IT HE ACTED LIKE A BOXER, IT WAS TERRIBLE, EVERYONE WAS DROOLING

HE DID SOME IN FALALA SALSA STEPS THAT WAS NOTHING, HE REALLY DANCED.

HE ASKED US TO STAND AND DANCE WITH HIM WHEN HE SANG SONG BY CELIA CRUZ.

LIFE IS A CARNIVAL BY CELIA CRUZ, OMG! HE DANCED SALSA DANCING HE WAS SERIOUSLY, HE SAID HE LIKED THE AUDIENCE THAT DANCED WITH HIM NOT LIKE THAT MANY NORTH AMERICANS STAY SEATED.

Decision to go on a mission

HE SAID THAT THE DECISION TO GO ON A MISSION WAS SOMETHING THAT CAME FROM HIS HEART, JUST LIKE THE MUSIC, IT WAS A DECISION BUT SOMETHING DIFFICULT HE HAD TO DO.

His performance

JUST HIM AND LITTLE PIANO PLAYER. THE MAN IS SENSATIONAL, AND IN TRUTH COELLO PLAYS VERY WELL, PLAYED SEVERAL WALTZES. HE LAUGHED A LOT WITH COELLO.

TO SEE DAVID TO DANCE AND SING KNEEL, KARATE KICK IS SOMETHING I WILL NEVER FORGET WHILE I’M ALIVE.

WHEN THEY STARTED PLAYING THE NOTES OF ROCKY SONG, HE STARTED MOVING HIS ARMS LIKE BOXERS TO THE BACK, THEN TO THE FRONT, AND THEN BOXED WITH AN IMAGINARY SHADOW BOXER, IT WAS FUNNY.

AND THEN KICKING THE AIR LIKE A KICK BOXER, UNDERSTAND THAT I NEVER THOUGHT IN MY LIFE DAVID WAS GOING TO DO ANYTHING LIKE THIS.

HE WORE A WHITE HAT AND DID SOME DANCE STEPS AND CLOSE BY SANG COELLO. WHEN HE STARTED THE AL JOLSON SONG, HE STOOD NEXT TO COELLO AND THEY STARTED SINGING. THEY BOTH PUT ON THE WHITE HATS AND DAVID CAME TO THE CENTER OF THE STAGE

HIS VOICE HAS IMPROVED, NOW CAN HOLD ANY NOTE LONGER, NOT CHANGED, IMPROVED, HAVING HIS VOICE VERY RELAXED, THAT MUST BE IT.

The crowd

THEY TOOK HIM OUT HURRIEDLY, HE WANTED TO GREET US BUT THEY DID NOT LET.

THEY TOOK HIM OUT SO FAST AND HE KEPT SMILING.

YES THE SISTERS AND THE MISSIONARIES KNOW HE’S A FAMOUS RECORDING STAR. ALL THE YOUNG GIRLS THAT FILLED THE PLACE DID, TOO.

CHANTED EVERYONE “ONE MORE! ONE MORE!”

No pictures or video allowed

NOT VIDEOING OR PHOTOS. IT WAS NOT ALLOWED, THEY WERE GUARDING, THEY WERE WATCHING ME BECAUSE I WAS TAKING NOTES.

NO, YOU COULD NOT FILM OR TAKE PICTURES, WAS FORBIDDEN AND THERE WERE PEOPLE ON THE SIDE WATCHING.

The excitement doesn’t end here! There will be another public event in Chile at Christmas time that Gladys plans to attend.

Posted in Chile, concerts, David Archuleta | Tagged: , , , , , , | 130 Comments »

 
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