It's been a very hectic last few weeks! I finally finished recording the piano and vocals for the upcoming album on a Friday evening, then, the following weekend and week was dedicated to moving (still within Columbia, MD), and then I promptly got a really bad case of the flu which I am still recovering from! So, finally, I will take a few minutes to reflect on the recording process with you and some things I discovered during this time. It was deeply personal. Although these songs are meant to be mostly fun, light, and catchy, they are based on my experiences with the ups and downs in love and romance, and so, whether they are wild, funny, or sad, they are still personal. Then, I started thinking about who I am sharing these stories with, and I realized that it's all friends-some I have had for a long time, and some I have made along the way, even recently. This is story telling among friends really, and you have supported me and helped me to get this far. And so, I feel that I need to break down any barriers between us, and my artistic name has come to feel somewhat of a barrier to me. I would like you to know me personally, as Sarah Ragsdale – quirks and all. ‘Zahra’ is a magnificent creature I created to channel music through for a few years. In my mind, she gave me an excuse to be a sexy, edgy, awesome version of myself, but Sarah Ragsdale is me. And so, because this album is so personal, and I am so touched by the personal friendships, contributions, and support, this album “Whimsical Romance” will be the first album finally released by, well, just…me.
Life is like one big romance. This collection of songs is about that romantic story called life, and the ups and downs that come along with it. Based on true stories, mixed with some fantastical exaggerations, this is a fun and playful album of the vast array of emotions that come along with relationships. Written at various stages throughout her life, these are raw stories that have been tried and tested at the piano, even with audience involvement – some relying on percussive snapping and clapping. Feelings range from happiness and pure bliss like in the song “This Kiss”, to a character of craziness and denial like “Next Time”, to more intimate reflections like in “Paranoia”, while others emit strength and moving on. Raw and rustic, catchy and melodic, this album has hints of blues, jazz, and even ragtime.