Wrapped in My Thoughts
Sarah started begging her parents for a piano when she was four years old. The begging continued until finally, when Sarah was six, they purchased a baby grand piano. Her Dad told her the piano was an investment and that she had to take private lessons until she was 18 years old, with no complaints or questions asked. Sarah began her piano lessons. By the time she was nine, she wanted to play the flute as well. By the time Sarah was in high school, she was taking private lessons in both piano and flute, involved with the school wind ensemble, participating in a number of solo ensemble events, competitions and performances. The last two years of high school, she was accepted into the California Youth Symphony and toured with that group to England, France, and Wales. When Sarah reached college, she left her music behind. Sarah graduated from Michigan State University with honors and a bachelor's degree in Biochemistry. She has spent the last 8 years as a scientist, a process engineer, and a project manager in the semiconductor, cancer research, pharmaceutical, and energy industries. She currently works at Grand Valley State University at the Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center as the Biomass Project Manager to help facilitate the build of an Anaerobic Biodigester Plant on a Dairy Farm in Ravenna Michigan to convert cow manure into biogas and subsequently into electricity. Inspired by singer/songwriters such as Tori Amos, Fiona Apple, Imogen Heap, and Sarah McLaughlin, Sarah began an interest in her music again in 2002. She took voice lessons for 2 and a half years with Margi Peterson, developing her vocal skills. In 2004, she began working on music theory, jazz, and composition with Kurt Ellenberger. Sarah has since been singing the National Anthem for the Muskegon Fury Hockey team, and has sung and played piano in many of her friend's weddings, and even written a wedding song that she performed at her best friend's wedding. On September 9, 2006, Sarah went to hear Kurt play a gig with a band called 'Hip Pockets'. In-between sets Kurt would talk with Sarah and Sarah expressed her frustration with her music. What was she doing all this for anyway if there was no result? That night, she asked Kurt to help her find the right shoes musically; something that was hers that she could stand in and believe in. Kurt told her she needed to compose; that her element was her songwriting and performing. Kurt told her to write every day, every month. He told her to write even though it might be terrible, because '...composition is a skill that needs to be sharpened.' Kurt said. Kurt told Sarah she had one year to write and that at the end of the summer they would take her best tracks and go into the studio and cut them. 'Wrapped in My Thoughts' is the child of that conversation.