Montreal-based pop vocalist and songwriter December Rose taps into music’s collective catharsis on new album Raise Your Voice
Music has a strange ability to connect people from vastly different walks of life around common experience, often providing a positive path forward for those grappling with the stigma and grief that so often accompanies trauma.
Montreal-based pop vocalist and songwriter December Rose is no stranger to that phenomenon as she taps into music’s collective catharsis while taking the next step in her journey as an artist with the release of her new album Raise Your Voice (to be released Ag. 27th, 2021 via Slammin Media). The songs on the album reflect the deeply personal challenges the artist has dealt with in her life as a result of growing up in an abusive household under the weight of mental illness…as they simultaneously celebrate her path to finding the courage to speak up about those experiences without feeling hostage to shame.
A lot has happened since 2015, when December Rose’s first and most recent EP was released. She was fresh out of university when she was offered a record deal with Invitation Records after being discovered by label co-founder Russ Regan. She worked closely with the industry veteran (who’d previously worked with and signed the likes of Elton John, Olivia Newton-John, and Marvin Gaye) until he suddenly fell ill and passed away in 2018.
What was a big loss for the label was an equally big loss for the young emerging artist who the record exec had taken under his wing. December Rose also left the label at that point.
“I was like, man, where do I go from here?” reflects December Rose. “Naturally labels maintain ownership of the masters, so I really did have to start from scratch. I knew I couldn’t just start making a bunch of new music until I really asked myself who I am as an artist. This was the most relevant and the most difficult question I had to ask myself, because it’s hard to see ourselves from an objective standpoint. I knew what I wanted to talk about, I just didn’t know how to package it.”
Over the last few years, December Rose has been working equally hard at honing the craft of songwriting and mastering the art of self-reflection. It has been a process of hard-won self-realizations that are strikingly apparent in how she presents herself to the world with this record. And the artist wishes for nothing less for her fans and listeners as her ultimate hope for the project is that it gives listeners comfort in their own pain, encouragement to reflect, and motivation to seek change.
It is a powerful notion and the dominant theme running through the album’s title track as well as the single “Long Time Running,,” which details how spend a lot of time, a long time running away from ourselves, from our problems, and from those overwhelming parts of ourselves that we need to fix or unpack.
Ironically, December Rose believes what triggered the making of the record was being able to move away from her childhood home and the abuse she faced due to her mother’s mental illness, as detailed in the track “Mamma”:
“I could finally start to talk about it. Because living in it, it began to feel very ‘normal’. You begin to think ‘nobody else lives this way. But this is, this is the kind of hand I’ve been dealt, and there’s nothing I can do about it.’ But when I left, I suddenly felt like there wasn’t going to be a whole lot of consequences for me wanting to talk about it, because I didn’t have to live with her at night. And so I think that gave me more courage and bravery to really seek out producers to produce this very personal content that had never seen the light of day outside of my notebook. And finally, here it is.”
Born and raised in Montreal, Canada, December Rose has been working on her craft since she was a child. In addition to over 15 years of formal musical/vocal training and a degree in classical voice performance, she is also an experienced and self-taught songwriter.
December earned two silver medals for her exemplary abilities and in-depth understanding of proper vocal mechanics during her time as a student of the Royal Conservatory of Music. Her extensive studies have helped her develop a system and pathway to assisting others as a private vocal coach— a role she has taken on for over nine years now.
Alongside the album, December Rose is putting out a six-part docu-series entitled “December Rose – Up Close and Personal Documentary” to give fans the full backstory on her long struggle with abuse and growing up in a household stricken by effects of mental-illness. She wanted to have full transparency with her audience.
“I didn’t want to just have another, another album with some pretty songs on it, relates, December Rose. “I wanted to show people that I am their friend. I’m the girl next door who went through some stuff and wants to talk about it. And that’s relatable. I didn’t want to seem like this out-of-touch artist that people would just be like, ‘Oh, she looks like a superstar, but I could never talk to her”
“In my day job I’m a vocal coach. And I teach a lot of young kids and adults and people with a lot of learning issues. So I feel like that’s given me a different perspective on how I should brand myself and how I want to present myself to the world because those same kids and teenagers who I teach during the week, are those same people that are also going to go and see me on a TV appearance or on a show. And there’s no difference between who I am off stage and on stage. So I just want people to really feel like there’s no barrier and connection.”
Raise Your Voice will be officially released worldwide on August 27th, 2021. Raise Your Voice is made available from Slammin Media and distributed worldwide by Believe Distribution.
Connect with December Rose
What they’re saying:
- Bong Mines Entertainment, December Rose releases a lovely Adult Contemporary tune, entitled, “Long Time Running”