< Chapter 5:3 Chapter 6:1 >
A new chapter in my life was about to begin. Things changed quickly after moving into my new apartment. Within a month, my goal was realized. I was hired by one of the top Gentleman’s Clubs in NYC. With that new position, my life changed dramatically again. Now I was back to having a life. I went back to working a 5-day workweek and started focusing on rebuilding my financial life. It was amazing, working 5 days in NYC; I was making the same amount of money that it was taking me 13 days to make when I was working in NJ. My life was beginning to head in a new direction and I was riding the wave.
As I settled into the flow in NYC I decided that it was time to open a new chapter of my life. I also decided it was time to get back to the true purpose of my life, making music. I was making more than enough to support my family and myself and decided that if I was going to truly build a future for us all, that I needed to resolve myself to pursuing my career in music. That’s one of the things you will find in life. When you truly decide to resolve yourself to no other outcome than the one you are choosing, the world moves for you.
As I thought about what my next step would be, I decided that I would find the best vocal coach I could find, and begin to take my voice to another level. At the same time, I had met a producer a few years earlier that I was totally impressed with and who I had sworn that I would work with. So I did exactly that. I sought out the best vocal coach in the world to study under and called the producer to set up a meeting.
The next two years were a whirlwind as I worked at the clubs 5-6 nights a week, and spent 4-5 hours a day 3-4 times a week in the studio. It was one of the most amazing experiences I ever had.
Plinky, the producer, became more than just my producer. He was my friend, my confidant. We had this energy between us that was amazing. As we were working on the music, it was almost like we didn’t even need to speak. We each knew what needed to happen next. I would start to communicate an idea to him, and before it was out of my mouth, he knew exactly what I wanted. And the same thing would happen when he would speak to me. He helped me tap into talents and parts of myself that I didn’t even know existed. The album took just over two years to complete. I know we could have finished much sooner, but every day that I went to the studio, we would spend an hour just talking about life in general before we started to working. And in retrospect, that time was probably some of the most valuable to me in the whole process. It was a process where I learned even more about my talents, my dreams, and my spirit. For the first time in a long time, I felt as though I was able to talk completely openly with this person. And what was more important, was he understood even the unspoken. I pray that I had half the impact on his life, as he did on mine.
The same kind of relationship developed with my voice teacher, Katie Agresta. Katie is a world famous vocal coach. Her students include some of the most recognized performers in the world; Jon Bon Jovi, Meatloaf, Carly Simon, Phoebe Snow, Annie Lennox, Cyndi Lauper, and the list goes on and on. So when I made my decision to study under someone, I chose her. What better way to give myself leverage to truly be my very best than to study under the best. And if I didn’t listen, the only person I had to blame was myself.
Katie also not only became a voice coach, but a dear friend and spiritual mentor. She introduced me to many of the things that put me on the path that I am on today. It was through studying with her that I was introduced to Eastern Philosophies regarding natural healing. She also introduced me to herbal remedies, Feng Shui, massage therapy, acupuncture, Reiki and so much more. Spending time with her was like bathing yourself in a fountain of wisdom and love. She was also the person who suggested that I buy a CD collection off of television that changed my life forever.
Katie and I became such close friends, that she would schedule my lessons right before she took her afternoon break so we could talk and have lunch with each other after I finished my lesson. That time was precious to me. We would discuss spiritual beliefs, past experiences, and our hopes and dreams for our futures.
It was during one of these afternoon chats that she opened a door for me in a new direction in life. I had reached a point in the summer of 1997 where I was in a deep depression. I had worked my way into one of the top positions at the club I was working in, Flash Dancers NYC, and was making more money than I had ever made in my life. I was working on the album, providing for my family, but I still wasn’t happy. There was so much I wanted to accomplish, so much I wanted to do. But when I looked at my life, I felt like I was doing nothing. Especially when it came to really planning and building my future. I was in this place where I knew what I was supposed to be doing, but for some reason, I wasn’t doing it.
On the days I wasn’t in the studio, I would stay in bed until it was time to go to work. I wasn’t doing anything to promote myself in any way. I was just DJing, recording, and coming to see Katie for my lesson. Now, granted, that was a big step from living in a condemned hotel just a year before. But I was completely frustrated and severely depressed.
As we talked one afternoon, she pointed to a box of CDs sitting on her computer stand and said, “I just got these, and I think they are exactly what you need. You need to get them also.” Have you ever had someone that you trusted so much that you would do what they said without question? That’s the kind of respect that I had for Katie’s opinions when it came to a lot of things. So for the next two weeks I was watching the late night infomercials looking for the phone number where I could purchase these CDs from the tall guy with the big teeth. Within a few weeks I had received my copy of Anthony Robbins “Personal Power 2” and my life has not been the same since. These experiences combined would be the beginning of a new chapter that would lead me to experiences and friendships that would change my life forever.
< Chapter 5:3 Chapter 6:1 >
The Warrior Sage Chapter/Section
Who Is Willard Barth?
Preface - Exploring Strength And Weakness
Chapter 1:1 - The Process Of Self-Awareness
Chapter 1:2 The Stages Of Child Development
Chapter 2:1 The World Changed Forever
Chapter 2:2 The Vicious Cycle Begins
Chapter 2:3 Losing Faith
Chapter 2:4 My Dark Secret
Chapter 2:5 Where Is The Love I Was Promised?
Chapter 3:2 The Road To Alcohol Dependence
Chapter 3:3 Leaving My Childhood Behind
Chapter 3:4 Escaping Responsibility; The Joy Ride Ends
Chapter 3:5 Living A Duality Begins
Chapter 3:6 Out Of Control
Chapter 3:7 Crossing The Line To Insanity
Chapter 3:8 The Black-out Drinking Begins
Chapter 3:9 Facing The Music
Chapter 3:10 A New Beginning
Chapter 3:11 More Lessons To Learn
Chapter 4:1 The Final Party
Chapter 4:2 A Moment Of Clarity
Chapter 4:3 My New Life Begins
Chapter 4:4 Sober, Time To Face The World
Chapter 4:5 The First Year Of Sobriety
Chapter 4:6 Major Change Comes In Year Two
Chapter 4:7 My Daughter Is Born April 20, 1992
Chapter 5:1 Life Changing Decisions Follow My Daughter's Birth
Chapter 5:2 Recognizing The Voice Inside
Chapter 5:3 The Empress Hotel
Chapter 5:4 A New Chapter In My Life Begins
Chapter 6:1 Finding My Way Home
Chapter 6:2 Falling Into Place
Chapter 6:3 A New Awareness
Chapter 6:4 Personal Finances And Personal Development
Chapter 6:5 The George Washington Story
Chapter 6:6 Letting Go So Others Can Grow
Chapter 6:7 The Wrap Up
Jump HOME from A New Chapter In My Life Begins