Don't Let Fear Win | #ComingAroundForMe

Hello beautiful people!

I just wanted to say one thing: TODAY IS THE DAY. My new single, Coming Around For Me is officially available on iTunes! Thank you to everyone who has supported me in this journey. This is just the beginning. Keep your eye out for more. While this is great news, what I would love even more is this:

1) Buy & download the new single on iTunes. Leave a review! Here's the link: http://bit.ly/1qV9InG

2) Share it. Download the cover art (click here) , share it on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and any other place on the Internets. In your captions, updates, and statuses, please post:

" Don't let fear win. New single by (tag me) now available on iTunes. http://bit.ly/1qV9InG #ComingAroundForMe "

Or even better, use your own words! Be sure to include the photo and hashtag!

3) Listen. Enjoy. Keep an eye out for more to come.

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

  • Jonathan Jay & Josh Stewart for working their tails off to help me create something beautiful
  • Sterling Graves, for the incredible photos he has contributed to this project.
  • Adam Bowen (bass) and Hunter Harrison (guitar) for tracking on the song. You guys are unbelievably talented and generous.

New Single. New Shows. New Website. A lot of New.

BIG NEWS.

After a two year journey of fighting fear and doubt, getting over myself and insecurities, and much more, I am proud to say that I am finally taking a step forward into music.

Without wasting any time, I wanted to give you all the official announcement that I will be releasing a new single, Coming Around For Me, on August 5, 2014. It has been really hard for me to not share all this over the past few months, but the time has come! The song will be available on iTunes, Amazon, and other online stores.

I am also pleased to announce that I will be playing some shows to celebrate the release, the first one being today! My barista home, Taproom Coffee, will be hosting a small latte art competition tonight at 7pm. Immediately after the latte madness, I will be sharing some stories and songs with all of you beautiful people. Everyone who comes will be able to hear the new single live! (thank you to coffeeatl.com for announcing this and sharing on your site–click here to see their post). 

Next week on August 4, I will be playing a small acoustic show with my good friends, Paper Lights, as they make a quick stop back to Atlanta. The show will be at the lovely Chattahoochee Coffee Company at 7pm.

The last thing I would like to announce is the launch of my new website, freddycastro.com, which will be dedicated to all my music. Here, you'll get a glimpse into my new journey in music. Don't worry, ReadySetFreddy.com is still a thing. This will be the place to get updates and a closer look into my life. 

Thank you to everyone who has supported me throughout this crazy time. Thank you for loving me in my best and in my worst. 

Tawnna+Chris | Chattanooga, TN | May 2014

It's been a while, I know. 

The reason for that is because I'm in the thick of wedding season (and other fun things you'll find out about in the near future)! Here are some photos from a wedding I did for my friends Tawnna and Chris. The location of their wedding was stunning, and so were they! This was the first wedding I have ever done (photography wise).

Special thanks to my close friend, Ben Brinker for second shooting with me and backing me up!

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Taken By: Ben Brinker

Vendor Information:

Location/Venue - Tennessee River Place - Chattanooga, TN http://www.tennesseeriverplace.com
Second Shooter - Ben Brinker - http://benjaminbrinker.com

#TheWanderLustAffair | Day 4 - Day 7

Sorry for the delay on the last few days! Coming back from a trip like this makes for a busy return. However, I also wanted to make sure I really soaked in the last few days (April 3-5) of the trip. 

I'll try my best to condense the last few days all in one post. So get ready.

DAY 4

Day four was full of more exploration, but this time we had a tour guide. Meet Chris.

Chris is a student at Moody Bible Institute. Even more, he's a stellar guy to be around. He was kind enough to show us some cool local spots and provide some free transportation for the crew. 

One of my favorite things about going somewhere new is the new people you meet. And I'm glad I have a new bro in Chicago.



 

 

The first stop of the day was Wildberry Pancakes & Cafe. I was super hungry, so I went big and ordered their Venetian Skillet (that also comes with their delicious pancakes). Cranberry juice was definitely a plus. Wildberry reminded a lot of an IHOP. Now before you Chicago kids get offended, I meant the atmosphere is similar. However, Wildberry wins the trophy for food and class. :D

Here is a picture of my delicious food.

To make this quick, here are the other places we stopped throughout the rest of the day in Chicago:

  • Millenium Park - The Bean
  • Soldier Field
  • Wicker Park (neighborhood)
  • Worm Hole (Coffehouse)
  • Phil's Last Stand (Incredible Vienna Beef, Chicago Hotdogs)
  • United Center

The Bean @ Millennium Park

Selfie @ The Bean

Soldier Field Sign

Front Door of Worm Hole

Worm Hole | Serves Halfwit Coffee from Chicago

Phil's Last Stand Sign

The Double Char Dog w/ Fries

Front of the UC near the Blackhawks Statue

Michael Jordan Statue @ UC

DAY 5

Day five was the day we were dreading: leaving Chicago. We left around 7 am for our 10 hour drive to Washington, D.C. The three worst things about this drive: 

  1. We basically followed the a storm the whole way, so it rained the most of the drive.
  2. Because of the rain, it took about 12ish hours to get to D.C. 
  3. We were not prepared for the MASSIVE STRETCH of toll roads. I'm pretty sure a little over $50 in tolls were spent.

But hey, that's what happens on these adventures, right? Anyway, after our long drive, we finally arrived in the Washington area, which was pretty great. When we arrived at the capital (about 8(ish) pm) we decided to park and walk to the Lincoln Memorial, Washington Monument, and the WWII Memorial. Remember in my other post about us stopping at the church in Chicago? Avery similar thing happened, where we found ourselves having another time to reflect and be mostly silent, with a few great laughs in between in sight. Here are a few shots from that night.

© 2014 Freddy Castro | iPhone 5s

© 2014 Freddy Castro | iPhone 5s

Panorama of WWII Memorial

DAY 6

Day six was an overcast day, and we made as many stops as we could. Our first stop of the day was the Arlington National Cemetery. Walking past thousands of graves of men and women who died for our country was chilling. It reminded me of the sacrifice that really is made by our military. However, even more chilling was hearing drums in the distance as my friends and I walked around. Suddenly, the whole atmosphere shifted, as people started walking toward the sound of the drums. Then it hit all of us. It was a funeral procession. Hundreds of cars were following as soldiers were making way for a fallen soldier. I lost it thinking of the family and friends who lost this great person. Whoever that man/woman was, thank you for your service and sacrifice.

After some time to reflect, we headed toward the capital. And because there was so much to see and do, I will spare you of hundreds of photos and tell you where we went so you can go see it.

© 2014 Freddy Castro | iPhone 5s

© 2014 Freddy Castro | iPhone 5s

Later in the day, we decided to visit Georgetown. Land of the Hoyas. It was somewhat refreshing to see people my age again and not herds of elementary school students. Georgetown is beautiful. And I'm pretty sure that as much as I love it, I will never be able to afford living there. Aside from the university, downtown Georgetown is full of places to shop, dine, and have a good time. The crew and I decided to eat at Old Glory, a really great BBQ place in the heart of Georgetown. I went with their "Georgetown Dunk," which sent me into a food coma and won my heart. It was a sandwich with prime rib of beef, peppers, pepper jack cheese, and a side of Old Glory's BBQ "dunk." It was like a Philly Cheesesteak but way better. Honestly.

Downtown Georgetown

Georgetown Dunk w/ a side of Mashed Potatoes

Georgetown was our last stop before we headed to rest for traveling back home.

Day 7 was spent the last day (April 5th) traveling back home to ATL. 

#TheWanderlustAffair is just beginning. This whole thing is a way for me to look back on my travels and document them. Later this week, I plan on blogging some thoughts I had during my trip and also some new updates on my life. 

Special thanks to Matt, Will, and Caitlin for being my crew that week. 

Day 3 of #TheWanderlustAffair

Day 3 was our second day in Chicago. We did a lot of exploring. So get ready:

We ate at West Egg Cafe just a short walk from our hotel (don't worry, ATL West Egg Cafe still has my heart). I had a delicious Denver Scramble with egg whites and of course my morning green tea. Unfortunately, at this point in time I started feeling super congested and weak, which kind of set the tone for the day.

 

Fourth Presbyterian Church Sanctuary

Fourth Presbyterian Church Sanctuary

Shortly after breakfast, we decided to walk into Fourth Presbyterian Church, which is located off of Chestnut Street, in front of the John Hancock Building. The symmetry and build of this church was beautiful, but what hit me even harder was the spirit in there. First of all, there were homeless people taking refuge from the cold in the sanctuary, which blew me away. It's not often you see a modern church letting people rest and keep warm. I can't explain in words what I experienced when we sat down for a few minutes to take it all in. I felt a peace from God that I haven't felt for a while. This peace was something I intended to find while on this trip. A peace that told me that everything would be okay; that new things are coming and I have no need to fear it. A peace that says more than the typical, "I have it in my hands." A peace that says it's already done. Provision is provided. You have nothing to worry about. Peace that goes beyond all understanding.

Afterwards, we walked around and ran into a Bowtruss Coffee, coffee shop. Locally roasted and such a cool vibe. However, I had a chai latte due to Lent (Monday's are my Sabbath days). 

image.jpg

We then took the train, and right off the bat we ran into the Chicago theater, which was definitely a sight to see. 

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

My friend Will is a big baseball guy, so we made the trek to Wrigley Field, which was super awesome to see. I can only imagine the amount of history that comes with this place. I've never really been crazy about baseball, but to think of the players and names that have come through here...well it's awesome.

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

After Wrigley Field, we headed all the to Navy Pier (which definitely has the biggest tourist feel). Honestly, not much was happening here, which makes sense because it's still pretty chilly up here. I did however enjoy it not being crowded. We didn't realize how big this place was, but the walk toward the lake was totally worth it. We took a moment to take in the view. The lighthouse took my breath away for a quick, but sweet moment. A lighthouse has always been a reminder for me to keep my head up and my eyes open in the most difficult times of my life. I've had to do this a lot in the past year. Here is what took my breath away.

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro

Our last big stop was back downtown at the Signature Room at the John Hancock Center. At the very top, there is a fine dining restaurant. However, at the very top of that, there is a really great lounge with a great environment. It felt really romantic, especially with all of the dates that were happening all around me. That feeling left me right away when I saw the view we had. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Being there in that moment made me feel very small. I thought to myself, there are so many people down there. So many people I don't know. So many people living their lives. I started making up stories in my head of the people all around Chicago. A mom working hard to make a better life for her children. A student studying every hour they can for their next exam. A business man trying to climb up the corporate ladder. A child searching for the love of a parent. So many people. So many stories. And all I can really tell is mine, and hope that it's enough to change the world around me. That is why I am blogging to document this trip. It's not to become famous and make it look like I have a life that's put together and happy-go-lucky all the time. This is more than telling all of you I've been to Chicago.

This trip is part of my story. Being a songwriter, videographer, and photographer makes me a storyteller. But what I've had to ask myself as a storyteller is this: Am I here to glamorize my story or tell it as it is?

Writing a blog gives me a chance to be real. To tell you that I am not perfect. To say that Jesus holds me together. To say that I am a human that makes mistakes. To tell you that sometimes it is hard to find the good and the beauty in everything around me. Thanks for reading parts of my story. Day 4 update is tomorrow.

Favorite Shot Of The Day:

© March 2014 | Freddy Castro