Support the Arts

  • Youth Composition Competition - Bio of 2016 Winner

    Elise Arancio, No Stranger to Composition Competitions

    gifts for music lovers, violin gifts Composition Competition Senior 1st Place Winner

    Just turning 16, Elise Arancio is our 1st place Senior Composition Winner for the Violettes 3rd Annual Youth Composition Competition. I had the pleasure of meeting her in person to present the $800 check donated by the West Knoxville Kiwanis Club. She enthusiastically agreed to be one of our volunteer judges for the junior student composition entries next year.

    Incredibly, she wrote her winning entry piece in one month! What a gift she has.



    Elise is a sophomore at Lakeside High School in Atlanta, Georgia, and has been studying composition with Dr. Richard Prior for four years. She is a violist and actively participates in Emory University pre-college programs such as the youth orchestra and chamber program. Elise also plays the piano, and hopes to establish a career in musical composition and viola.

    In 2014, Elise was a national semifinalist for the PTA Reflections competition with her string quartet piece “Mechanics”. Her piece for wind ensemble entitled “Sprites and Spirits” earned a merit scholarship to Interlochen Arts Camp, which she attended in the summer of 2015. This summer, she will be attending the Curtis Young Artist Program at Curtis Summerfest for composition. Her recent commissions include a piece for the Emory Junior Chamber Orchestra, as well as a flute duet piece.

    Gifts for Music Lovers, Piano Gifts, Violin Gifts


    Please Remember that purchases of our Whimsical Music Themed Greeting Cards Make Profits for the Youth Competition. The insides are blank. The backs have serious or humorous practice tips. We take requests. Painted in acrylics by Becky, a recently finished request is below with the Practice Tip: Sleep On It. (Anyone who has experienced this knows that if you practice or try to memorize a difficult passage before going to sleep, your brain will work on it overnight.)

  • 3rd Annual Youth Composition and Songwriter Competition Results

     

    Presenting Results of the 3rd Annual Violettes

    Composition and Songwriter Competition 2015/16


    We hope to post some student Bios in the near future. Please send in Bios and Photos.

    Senior Division Composition Awards

     

    Announcing the 1st Place Senior Composition Winner for the 3rd Annual Violettes Youth Music Competition (Hope You don't mind some visual - it shows how easily your music paints a picture) Thanks to Kiwanis West in Knoxville, TN for the Prize Donation.

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    2nd Place Senior Composition-

    Lindsey Williams from Oregon with "Nocturnal Transmogrifications"

    Thanks to Kiwanis West of Knoxville, TN for the $200 Prize Donation.

     

    3rd Place Senior Composition-

    Helena Abney-McPeek from Illinois with "May 14", Both Parts I and II

    Thanks to Sheet Music Plus for the $25 Gift Certificate

     

    Honorable Mentions:

    Juliana Lynch from Maryland, "The Cherry Tree"

    Sayali Gove from North Carolina, "The Night Dances"

    Max Justice from Oregon , "Scarlet"

    Jie Zhang from Oregon, "The Unforgettable"

     


    Special Award:

    Juliana Lynch from Maryland with "Heaven's Door" - One of the judges commented that this deserves 1st place in a different category. Violettes by Becky agrees, so we have created a special one time Choral award for Miss Lynch.

    Presenting 1st Place Choral Award to Juliana Lynch, we pulled $100 out of our Violettes by Becky hat.



    Senior Songwriter Awards

    Please note that this decision was impossibly hard. Finally, after looking at the ratings from 3 judges, we had to call a prize winner.

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    1st Place Senior Songwriter - Aanna Sapp from Missouri with "Wanderlust"

    Thanks to the Annie Moses Band for the Fine Arts Summer Academy Gift

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    2nd Place Senior Songwriter- Carli Tuttle from Florida with "Trust Me"

    Thanks to US Music Corp for the Washburn Guitar Prize

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    3rd Place Senior Songwriter - Alma Russ from North Carolina with "Next Town"


    Thanks to Sheet Music Plus for the $25 Gift Certificate


    Junior Division Composition

    1st Place Junior Composition-  Fiona Abney-McPeek from Illinois with "Sunlight"

    Thanks to Performers Music in Chicago for the $50 Gift Certificate

    2nd Place Junior Composition- Tie

    Sonia Nair from Oregon with "Coming of Age"

    Thanks to Performers Music in Chicago for the $25 Gift Certificate

    Maya Wood from Missouri with "Moonlight Spirit"

    Thanks to Sheet Music Plus for the $25 Gift Certificate

    Junior Division Songwriter

    1st Place Junior Songwriter- Samantha Shuma from Texas with "Hooked"

    Thanks to Sheet Music Plus for the $50 Gift Certificate

    2nd Place Junior Songwriter- Emma Rowe from Tennessee with "Life Isn't Fair"

    Thanks to Sheet Music Plus for the $25 Gift Certificate.

     


    School Awards

    Oakland, California Roots Int. School wins Outstanding Participation Award, with Dr. Bryan Alvarez entering 26 students with Garage Band compositions. They each have feedback from our amazing judges. 1st thru 3rd places still to be announced. -And a $500 check from an anonymous donor.

    We still haven't heard from one of the judges, who is diligently typing results for all the children.

    The Flushing, New York Veritas Academy students were challenged by Dr. Michael Eisenberg to write songs to enter. Students Melany Bernard , David Mercado, Tiffany Rose Joseph all won honorable mentions. Plus outstanding teacher, Michael Eisenberg wins $200 for the school to spend on music related equipment. Thanks to a collection of my generous friends and clients.


    We must thank Composition Classes of Ben Mulholland from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania school, Play On, Philly! for judging the middle school compositions including the overwhelming number of Garage Band compositions.


    Note that all Judges are Music Professional volunteers! A great big thank you to these fine people. We pulled in an additional judge, Tammie Dischner, member of the Knoxville Songwriter Association, to help us decide on the Senior Songwriter group winner.

    Gifts for Piano Players, Piano Purse, Gifts for Piano Teachers Support our fine work with purchases. Whimsical Gifts for Music Lovers. Shop Here Now.
  • Violettes in Exhibition: Support the Arts

    To Support the Arts is a Violettes goal, but Now the Arts is supporting Violettes!

     

     

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    Violettes does so much to Support the Arts - what a fun turn around!

    This is a short blog to let you know of one of Violettes' recent successes. Our Gypsy Violin Purse has been accepted for display at the Knoxville Airport art exhibition. The show is from April 16 to October 7, 2015. The display with the note below will be in the show:

    Music gifts, Gifts for music lovers, music festival fashion Gypsy Violin (Back) - Support the Arts and Vice Versa
    Ms. Chaffee has Civil Engineering Degrees from UC Berkeley and Cornell University. After working in the field for many years, she devoted her time to raising 2 musical children, and volunteering in schools and church. As her children gained independence, she had time to sew. A creative out of the box thinker with a sense of design and a love of music, she made a Violin Purse. The Violin in this show is part of a collaboration with her brother, composer and writer, Paul Brody. He wrote a story about a Roma Violinist in Paris, which is presented on Ms. Chaffee's web site, www.ViolettesByBecky.com.   Violettes function as practical wearable art bags, but are also a hit with musicians, who use them to carry extra strings and equipment.Violettes fans asked for other instruments, such as cello, piano, guitar, banjo, and uke. Some are hand painted by herself and local artists. Select bags are also available in leather.  One customer says, "Violettes handbags/music accessory bags are exquisite, but also incredibly practical. It is like carrying a piece of art that is also extremely useful. I always get compliments when I have mine. As a violist, I carry it on stage with me when I perform or rehearse, so I can unobtrusively have my rosin, extra strings, a pencil etc., if I need them. I also use it as a regular "dress up" purse, esp. when I go to concerts. Thank you, Violettes, for being such a beautiful and useful product."
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    Thru her on-line business, Violettes by Becky, Ms. Chaffee gives back to the children's music community. She assists in many capacities with fundraisers for children's music causes, and holds Annual Youth Composition and Songwriter Competitions with national entries from students age 10 thru 18. Students submit on-line with a Score and MP-3 or You Tube recording. While a few winners are selected, all the participants receive constructive comments from an international jury. 

     

    To see more photos and the specific page with the collaboration, click HERE.

    Please remember to come to our site first for gifts for music lovers, or any gifts at all. If you need music festival fashion, this is where to shop. Supporting us is supporting Youth Music Education Causes. So support the Arts HERE. Thank you!!

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  • Violettes Meets Song Writer, David Lauver, Part 2

    Song Writer, David Lauver, uses Talent as Volunteer 

    Mr. Lauver is a long time volunteer for youth education causes. Volunteering for Violettes' Youth Songwriters Competition, is just another way that he gives back. This is a continuation of Violettes Meets David Lauver, Part 1. Thank you again from Violettes by Becky.

    Violettes: You work for many months each year planning a fundraiser for scholarships at the University of Tennessee and Pellissippi State Community College. Tell us about this.
    Mr. Lauver: As a member of East Tennessee’s Society of Professional Journalists, I help write and perform in the “Front Page Follies.” This annual scholarship fundraising roast brings together some 250 state and local leaders to laugh at themselves for a good cause. I’ve chaired the script committee for more than 30 years—writing satirical skits, songs, and parodies that poke fun at newsmakers and news events.
    Proceeds from the Follies have funded more than $50,000 in scholarships at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and Pellissippi State Community College. Each year’s scholarships are named for an outstanding East Tennessee print or broadcast journalist. Our 2014 scholarships were presented in honor of WBIR-TV anchor Robin Wilhoit. The show’s scripts and videos preserve a unique “pop culture” perspective on the events that have shaped East Tennessee for more than a third of a century.

    Violettes: What is your personal songwriting story? Has anyone in KSA written hits recorded by a star?

    Song Writer Featuring KSA lifetime member Kim Williams induction into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame, pictured with recording artists Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks

    Mr. Lauver: I wrote my first song when I was in high school, but really didn’t know much about the craft of songwriting until I joined KSA, the Nashville Songwriters Association International, and the Songwriters Guild of America. What I’ve learned from those resources has helped me to express myself more effectively and create songs listeners seem to enjoy. I’ve been fortunate to be a five-time finalist/performer in the national songwriting competition at North Carolina’s “Merlefest,” and in 2014 I had the first-place gospel/inspirational song in the Great American Songwriting Contest. I’ve also performed on radio and television broadcasts and at Gatlinburg’s Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival, Maryville’s Foothills Fall Festival, and Nashville writers’ nights and showcases.
    Several of my songs celebrate the people, land, and history of this region. I’ve provided original tunes for special events at local landmarks, including Knoxville’s Historic Ramsey House; the “Marble Springs” home of Tennessee Governor John Sevier; and Clinton Highway’s iconic “Airplane Filling Station.” My song “Freedom Rolls,” which pays tribute to the rescue workers of September 11 and East Tennessean’s response to that tragedy, was performed as part of the 2002 community remembrance ceremonies in Downtown Knoxville.
    Our biggest KSA “success story” is Kim Williams, who in 2012 was elected to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. Kim, a Rogersville native, is a lifetime member of KSA who gives back to the group by conducting songwriting workshops each month. He has written songs found on CDs, tapes, and videos that have sold more than 154 million copies.
    Kim’s song “Three Wooden Crosses,” recorded by Randy Travis, was named Song of the Year by the Country Music Association, the Academy of Country Music, the Christian Country Music Association, the Gospel Music Association and the Nashville Songwriters Association International. With recording artist Garth Brooks, Kim wrote a string of hits that Brooks took to the top of the charts. Those No. 1 songs include “Ain’t Goin’ Down ‘Til the Sun Comes Up,” “It’s Midnight, Cinderella,” “Papa Loved Mama,” and “She’s Gonna Make It.”

    Thank you Mr. Lauver for all that you do.

    Song Writers KSA photo information board highlighting meeting schedule

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  • Violettes Meets Song Writer, David Lauver, Part 1

    David Lauver Invites You to                    

    the Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival

    August 21-24 (Don't have to be a Song Writer to Attend)

    Knoxville Songwriters Association, Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival Knoxville Songwriters from KSA perform at 2013 Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival

    I met David Lauver at the Grand Opening of Digitrax Entertainment Company in South Knoxville. (Lucky me to run into this Song Writer). As the Education and Public Relations Director of the Knoxville Songwriters Association (KSA), he was generous to offer to be a volunteer judge for the Violettes by Becky Youth Composition & Songwriter Competition. He suggested that I attend a KSA meeting to invite the club to be involved. KSA meets each Tuesday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Fountain City Library, 5300 Stanton Road. I thoroughly enjoyed these talented folks’ pre-meeting sing-a-long session followed by a group review of songs in progress by attendees. I couldn’t help thinking how night and day the meeting was compared to engineering meetings that I attend!

    1. Violettes - What are your recent projects as education and public relations director of KSA?
    Mr. Lauver - I work with other KSA members to provide developmental and continuing education opportunities for local songwriters. We bring in Nashville professional songwriters, publishers, and studio owners to share their experience and answer questions from local writers. By arranging for KSA participation in community events, we also work to support civic and charitable programs, give our members experience in performing their songs in public, and contribute to East Tennessee’s heritage as a center of musical creativity.

    2. Violettes - The KSA seems like a fun group.  What are your favorite KSA memories or events?

    Mr. Lauver - We’ve made many good memories performing original songs around the region.  Our next scheduled performances are at the Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival, August 21-24 in Gatlinburg, and September 14 at the Historic Ramsey House’s Country Market.  In addition, we may be among the community performers in September at the Tennessee Valley Fair. (Violettes recommends that you attend performances of our own talented Knoxville Song Writers).

    Also, you never know what memorable events could take place at KSA’s weekly meetings.  Several long-time members recall a night when
    Kim Williams* showed up with a guy who sung demo recordings Kim pitched to publishers and producers.  The young man said he wanted to be a recording artist, but told us he also had aspirations as a writer.  He got out his guitar and asked if we’d like to hear a song he’d co-written.  It was being pitched to Tanya Tucker and he really hoped she’d cut it.  Then he began playing the minor chord intro to “The Thunder Rolls.”  I’m not sure if Tanya ever recorded it, but it became one of his own signature songs in Garth Brooks’ record-setting music career.

    *Kim Williams, who is a lifetime member of KSA, was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2012 and will be at the 2014 Smoky Mountain Songwriters Festival.

    David Lauver, Part 2 to be Continued in next blog.

    Song Writer, Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival, Knoxville Songwriters Asociation
    David Lauver In-Concert
    Mr. Lauver will be a volunteer judge in Violettes' 2nd Annual Youth Composition & Songwriters Competition.
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  • Best of 2013 Jazz Recordings

    Just in from NPR -  The favorite 2013 jazz recordings:

    The 2013 NPR Music Jazz Critics Poll

    by FRANCIS DAVIS

     

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/bestmusic2013/2013/12/16/251761858/the-2013-npr-music-jazz-critics-poll?utm_content=socialflow&utm_campaign=nprfacebook&utm_source=npr&utm_medium=facebook

  • SUPPORT OF THE ARTS

    Violettes supports musical arts

    Ask about our middle school and high school music department fund raising programs.

    Contributions have been donated to:

    • Oak Ridge Symphony through ORCMA.
    • Knoxville Symphony through Symphony League  Silent Auction.
    • Support children for music education through CelloLeap for Tuesday Morning Music Club in Knoxville
    • Bravo Vail Fundraiser
    • WDVX 89.9 fm, Knoxville, TN

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