Megan Freedman
Gig Seeker Pro

Megan Freedman

Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2018 | SELF | AFM

Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada | SELF | AFM
Established on Jan, 2018
Band Americana Country

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

Music

Press


Emerging sunlight peeks from behind the temporary clouds and retreating chill of a Southern California morning. A guitar strums thoughtfully in the background, swelling into focus as nondescript joggers hustle by the high school campus behind them. Color guard members pull on well-worn gloves and pick up freshly-taped equipment. They move gracefully over the grass in soft dresses and crisp dress shirts. As the music builds, the progression of preparation into practice feels familiar.

These are the opening shots of Megan Freedman’s new music video, “Lift You Up.” For anyone who has been involved in the color guard activity, the depiction of pulling on one’s gloves and taking the first tosses of the morning will feel comfortable and familiar; for the general audience, this will be a new viewing experience. This is what drew Megan Freedman, an alumna of Woodbridge High School’s Color Guard, to feature the current WHS Color Guard in her work.

Megan’s budding music career, now based in in British Columbia, Canada, began hundreds of miles away in Irvine, California at Woodbridge High School. Along with color guard, Megan dabbled in choir. Her love for music and performance only intensified over time, and she went on to pursue musical theatre at a local community college. After a brief stint of “finding [herself]” in Europe, Megan moved to British Columbia to be near her family and–incidentally–music. Both Megan’s mother and step-father are accomplished musicians in their own right and are part of a country duo. This family connection with the arts renewed Megan’s passion for music and she sought out new mentors and avenues by which to grow within her craft. Her mentors and producers included Darby Mills, Aaron Gordon, Dez Black, Skip Sailor, Lynne Sailor, and Bernie Grundman–all of whom led Megan to her current project. Beyond “Lift You Up,” Megan is traveling to LA to record new singles. She has recently assembled the new Megan Freedman Band and plans to tour BC and Alberta in the near future. She hopes to eventually travel to her home state of California with her new band mates. Megan has big plans to release a six song EP in the fall, but this is just the start for her promising music career.

As a fledgling musician, this will be Megan’s biggest project to date. As such, she views it as her introduction to the world, an introduction in which it felt natural to include her first love: color guard. “My entire life from the time I was 12 to 18 revolved around color guard,” Megan says. “I felt that the best way to introduce myself to the world as an artist was to show everyone the activity that had so heavily influenced my life.” She originally envisioned that her music video would include an intricate routine set to her song, much like a winter guard show turned music video. However, once Megan teamed up with her close friend and fellow WHS alum Aura Meza, her vision shifted. When Aura heard the song, she felt the lyrics embodied teamwork and working together toward a common goal. Consequently, in producing the video, she took a more organic approach and filmed the WHS color guard as they spun on one of the expansive green fields of Woodbridge High School. Aura filmed them as they warmed up in a circle, as they stood in technique block, as they performed for each other, and as they tried new skills. The shots feel more natural and holistic than a performed show might have been. She includes several shots of performers dropping before picking back up and trying again. This is a side of color guard that many would not think to include, but one that portrays the perseverance and grit of the activity. Aligned with portraying the guard as a unified group, the final sequence of the video captures two performers trying, unsuccessfully at first, to complete a double flag exchange. The last shot depicts the two finally achieving the new skill and smiling into the camera in celebration. Megan feels Aura connected with the story of individuals working in tandem to move forward and “executed that perfectly” in the video.

Having developed her color guard career during both her middle school and high school years, Megan considers color guard to be a huge part of her life. She attributes her current career as a performer to her color guard roots. “Had director Brad Harris never come to [my middle school] a small group of us to start a team,” she says, “I probably would not be a professional performer now.”

On his part, Band Director Brad Harris was happy to facilitate the vision of his former student. Mr. Harris had lost touch with Megan after she graduated and did not know about her performance career until he stumbled across a few videos on his news feed. Once he reached out to see when she might be performing in Southern California, the idea for her video was born. Brad remembers Megan as having “had two loves in high school: color guard and singing. She wanted to combine those for this video.” He also notes that she has always been ambitious and hard-working. As such, he was happy to help Megan in coordinating with the current WHS Color Guard instructor, Manny Ruiz, to bring her artistic vision to fruition.

Both Megan and Mr. Harris are aware that the color guard activity is rarely featured beyond its intended venues of local circuit competitions and the international circuits of both DCI and WGI and were thrilled to share it with a general audience. “I was so excited to have the team and the activity get exposure like this and be involved with this project,” Brad says. He adds that his students loved the experience as well. Megan echoes this sentiment. “I wanted to expose the beautiful Sport of the Arts to a new audience.” - Jenny Lyons


In Focus | Megan Freedman
Meet Megan, she is originally from Southern California and has lived in Kelowna since 2015. Megan is a musician whose style is inspired by her parents' love for Classic Rock. She also loves Pop, Punk, and Ska sounds of SoCal from the 90’s. You can find Megan's unique SoCal style as she performs all over the Okanagan.



Who is your favourite person to spend time with and why?
My family and friends. Their support is what gives me the ability to create art.

What is your favourite local store in Kelowna and why?
Parlour Ice Cream. They use local ingredients, have you tried the Lavender?

Describe yourself in one word.
Silly.

If you could go anywhere in the world right at this moment where would you go and why?
Peru to climb Macchu Picchu and hang with some llamas.

What is your favourite activity in Kelowna?
My daily hikes up Knox Mountain!

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you?
In a high school dance competition we were performing to the song Falling Slowly from Once, when I knocked over a giant tree we were using as a backdrop.



What is the most inspiring thing that has happened to you?
I have been fortunate enough to travel to many places and meet people from all over the world. My favourite place that I have to travelled is Israel. Unlike some of the other places I've travelled, I was able to spend time with the locals and experience everyday life. Going to the grocery store and hanging out in my cousin's favourite bar was amazing. The best parts were the food, that I still dream about years later, and the music. Israeli music inspired me to stop dragging my feet to learn guitar and eventually I could perform an Israeli song!

Tell us your favourite childhood memory.
Because I grew up in Southern California, my fondest childhood memories revolve around Disneyland... I will never forget the time my entire family was chosen to participate in a parade which required my mom, dad, brother, sister and I to wear tutus and dance around with the hippos from Fantasia. It is particularly memorable because after the parade my dad couldn't get his giant blue tutu to untie and a cast member had to help him out.

Where do you volunteer or give back to in the community?
I love paying it forward in line at coffee shops. It is so nice to know that I might have brought a smile to a stranger's face by saving them an extra $4 on their coffee.

If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
The fear of people who are different.

Where would you sneak away to in Kelowna to spend some time alone?
The beach.



Where would you like to see positive change in Kelowna and why?
A larger mall in Kelowna. So many people travel to Vancouver to shop and it would benefit our community so much to make Kelowna a shopping destination.

What do you think makes Kelowna great?
Warm summers and amazing ice cream.

What are 3 things on your bucket list?

I want to go on tour down the coast starting in Vancouver and ending in San Diego.
I'd like to return to Israel and experience even more of the amazing country.
It seems silly but I want to visit every Disney park in the world. I have two down and four to go.

Tell us something that not everyone may know about you.
It is a dream of mine to play Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof.

How do people connect with you, personally, through social media? (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.)
facebook.com/meganfreedmanmusic, Instagram: @freeduhman, Twitter: @freeduhman

What is the name of your business/organization?
Megan Freedman Music

Why did you get into/start this business?
I love making music.



What is the goal of your business?
I want to be able to make a living creating music.

What has been your biggest struggle either at work or in life?
Not comparing someone else's outsides to my insides.

If you could start all over again would you do things the same or would things be different?
I don't know if things would be different but I would definitely see things from a different angle.

What do you always find yourself saying?
Don't keep score.

Tell us your best piece of life advice.
Keep moving forward.



If you could spend one whole day with anyone in the world who is currently alive, who would you select?
Mel Brooks and Bruce Springsteen. They both tell stories in very different ways but their art is a major inspiration to me... Plus Mel would be a hoot to hang with.

Why do you think it is important to shop locally?
It is important to support small businesses.

What has been your proudest accomplishment?
Releasing my EP Wild and Free.

Give someone you think that deserves it a shout out and explain why!
My mom. Without her constant support, my record would not have been made.

My choice for the KelownaNow In Focus spotlight is:
Brent Smith - KelownaNow


Discography

Wild and Free

Track 1: 
Wild and Free
Track 2: Summer of Love
Track 3: Ocean and Sand
Track 4: Lift You Up
Track 5: Chasing the Sun



Photos

Bio

Born and raised in Southern California, Megan’s parents taught her the gospel of Springsteen, Zeppelin, and Lennon/ McCartney.

After finding her voice, she began singing in ensembles and acting in musical theatre.

A dual citizen of both Canada and the United States, Megan decided to relocate to Kelowna, BC where she launched her career as a solo recording artist. She recorded her first single Lift You Up in Kelowna with Dez Black of Edmonton producing. She then traveled with Dez to Hollywood to record the rest of her EP in his mentor’s studio Skip Saylor Recording. They recorded in a live room to recreate a sound that has hardly been heard since the 1970’s on a mixing board that has seen the likes of Tom Petty, Foo Fighters, and many more.

Megan’s lyrics paint pictures of her California childhood while paying tribute to her heroes Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, John Mellencamp, and so many more. Her new EP Wild and Free is available now.

Band Members