One of the Best Decisions of my Life

October 10, 2016

Simple Living

Art by Gordon Roqué

As previously announced, I am currently a college student, and along with this new venture, I have had a growing desire to express my thoughts and share what I have been learning.

I have decided to start posting regularly on my blog again.  Not only will you receive updates on forthcoming shows and creative projects, you will also be reading about many thoughts and viewpoints about the world at large that I hold dear or sincerely grapple with.  Some of these perspectives will come from the college education I am enjoying, and many others will stem from my personal life experiences.

For this first installment, I discuss a decision I made for myself that has exponentially improved the quality of my life.

A few years ago, I decided to stop watching television.

In my case, I stopped paying for cable, and more recently, unsubscribed from Netflix.  This means that watching television on a regular basis in any forum does not happen in my life AT ALL.  (I also get to save money. Cable is not cheap.)

When I visit my sister, I might do a Netflix binge just for the fun of it, but this is a rare exception, not a rule.  I mainly watch television in social settings, like the Superbowl Half-time show, a Presidential Debate, or an Oscar party, but that is it.

There are three reasons why I stopped watching tv.

Reason #1:  Time is extremely valuable.

Television is designed to be addictive.  There are incredibly talented writers on tv shows who create compelling stories with endearing characters.  They know how to reel you in. After one episode, you are hooked.  You care about the good guy, rally against the villains, gasp at the cliffhangers, and sit at the edge of your seat enamored of it all for however many seasons (at 22 or more episodes per season). Yes, there’s some excellent and engrossing television out there, but at some point, I had to ask myself .  .  .

Do I really want to spend countless hours of my own life  watching other people actually do something with theirs?

Television is so addictive that it is far easier to have more of it than less.   So, I decided to have none of it.  I want to look back on my life and know that I did more than just stare at a glass screen.  That may be fine for some people, but that is not a life for me.

Reason #2:  Advertising clutters my mind with unnecessary demands.

People in the advertising industry are a shrewd bunch.  Large corporations hire talented teams of people to figure out how to get your money, and they are wildly successful.  The slick ads on tv selling delicious food at a restaurant, a ravishing piece of jewelry, a cool pair of shoes, and any number of items you do not need are virtually inescapable and are designed to be enticing.  The ads also play over and over again so that they can get in your head.    To me, it has always felt more like a form of brainwashing.  There are all these voices telling you what you need and what looks good.

When it comes to my sensibilities, the only voice that truly matters is my own.

When you let advertising dictate your tastes and influence what your desires should be, you give them power over you.  Advertising controls television.  I refuse to let it control me.

Reason #3: Watching television is a one-way conversation.

Have you ever had an argument with someone who would not even listen to your side of a story?  Was it like talking to a brick wall?  Was it maddening and frustrating when you did not get a response?  What did it feel like to be disempowered and disenfranchised in that way?

Back when I watched TV, I was passively letting everything I saw into my head.  Sure, I could change a channel, but every channel created its own programming.  Every show had its own propaganda and cultural agenda whether I agreed with it or not.

Television has never answered any of my questions .  .  .

In the most ethnically diverse country in the world, why do white people portray the VAST MAJORITY of roles in American television? Are they the most deserving of that privilege?

How the heck does everyone have perfect hair ALL OF THE TIME?

Why does MTV exist when music is now the least of its concerns?

How in the world is FOX News considered a legitimate news source?

Why are the Kardashians important?

Do we really have to have HUNDREDS of TV shows and channels to choose from?

I am not a fan of one-sided conversations.   My thoughts and concerns have value, and I would rather explore and exchange them in ways that are substantive and worthwhile.

For the record, I am not trying to convince anyone of the evils of television. These are all just the reasons why it is intentionally not a part of my life.

If I am not watching television, I have time for a more active existence .  .  .

Conversations with friends and loved ones.

Reading books.

Playing LOTS of music on my piano.

Writing for school and on this blog.

Art and photography.

Baking delicious quiches.

Cuddling with my cat.



Studying for school.

Taking meaningful actions to better myself.

In the end, my worldview and my well being are my own to mold.  Television, with all of its tantalizing treasures, has no say in these matters, and this is fine by me.


Life Changes

September 17, 2016

Simple Living

With fewer posts on social media over the last month, I have been very quiet lately.  Some big changes have transpired in my life during this time, and my days have been full.

For starters, I vacated my apartment in Nashville.  It was a cozy little home that was affordable by Nashville’s exorbitant standards and conveniently located close to four major highways, as well as a Dunkin Donuts down the hill where I would get hazelnut coffee on the weekends.  I also left a fulfilling day job and incredibly sweet coworkers who tearfully sent me off on my way.

Why did I leave all of this?

Where have I gone then?

Well, here .  .  .


My cat Steinway and I have moved to a rural home southeast of Nashville to live with my boyfriend MaxZine.  I have set up shop in a house that rests deep in a holler, sufficiently far enough from where civilization makes all of its fussy demands.  Here in this place, we enjoy fresh vegetables and aromatic blooms from a well-tended garden, a creek where dogs like to wade and splash water with their tales, winding beaten paths, and panoramic views of Tennessee’s short, but pretty, mountains.

It is so quiet here too.

Crickets, frogs, summer breezes, and wild unknowns sing their songs in these parts, adorning a gentle silence that maintains dominion over everything.

I’ve lived far too long at the mercy of modernization.  My new home takes me back to my childhood roots when I grew up in a tropical rain forest surrounded by a massive blue ocean.  Only now, without the ocean and far less rain, there is endless greenery high above and deep below.  Nature abounds as it did in my life so long ago.  I’m loving every minute of it.

Oh yeah, there is one other thing.  I have enrolled at Middle Tennessee State University.  As a sophomore, I’m currently engaged in a full load of classes that include a humanities course, a survey of US history, and audio production, among others.  This is a chapter in my life that is still writing itself.  I’ll share more about this later.

Until I am done with school, my main focus every day will be my studies and my music.  I will be working on lots of new songs and hope to play a smattering of shows over the next year.

All of these changes are intended to focus my life towards what I hold dear.  I value loving relationships, learning, music, creativity, simple living, and mindfulness.  I truly want to live in ways that center around these needs.

So then, this is where I am.

Thank you for following along.  There will be so much more to come.

Gordon Roqué to Showcase All New Works on Instagram

June 5, 2016

Creativity / Design / Photography

I’ve decided to make some changes to the way I do social media.  As a way to simplify how I interact with the world, I’ve got something new in store for my official Instagram page.

First of all, I LOVE Instagram.  It’s my favorite social media platform.  As such, it will be the primary source for my online musical and artistic content.  Starting in June 2016, all photos and posts related to my family and personal life will only be shared on Facebook.  This shift will allow me to more fully showcase the music and visual artwork that I want to share with the world on Instagram.

Of course, everything I present on Instagram will also be shared on Facebook and Twitter, but Instagram will be the starting point and primary source.

What will I be showcasing?  I want to explore the numerous ways by which music and visual art can coalesce when presenting ideas and concepts.  You’ll be seeing lots of new sketches and drawings, colorful and vibrant photography, and performance videos with visual and musical elements.

For a long time, I’ve been neglecting my visual art sensibilities in order to focus more on my music, but because I truly love both mediums, it’s about time that I explore how I can combine the two.  Maybe they will enhance each other in meaningful and gratifying ways.

I certainly hope so.

Find me on Instagram ( and starting on June 6, 2016, see all the magic unfold.

Hugs and Asian Power to all.



Gordon Roqué to Perform at Outcentral on May 14!

May 9, 2016



I’ve been invited to perform a set this Saturday, May 14, 2016, as part of OutCentral’s monthly concert series.  Other artists slated to perform that night are Cloudmouth and Wayne Graham.

Here are the details at a glance:

Gordon Roqué (w/ Cloudmouth and Wayne Graham)
Date: Saturday, May 14, 2016
Time:  8:00PM to 10:00PM
Venue: Outcentral LGBT Community Center of Nashville
Address: 1709 Church St., Nashville, TN 37203
Cover Charge: $5.00 at the door

I’m looking forward to playing a rich and intimate set for everyone, and I’ll see you there!!


Generosity Report: February 2016

March 9, 2016


It’s that time again!  I’m here to report about my #52weeksofgenerosity project.  February proved to be a bit challenging due to a very busy schedule, but I learned a good bit from the experience.  March should go much more smoothly.

So, here’s what I did:

Week #5: Organizing a Green House


For this week, I wanted to be of service by donating my time and energy to help with someone else’s project.  My friends MaxZine and Spree have a greenhouse attached to their home.  I suggested that I would love to come out for an afternoon to rearrange the front portion of the space in order to make room for a walkway, a sitting area, and more plants.

The first thing I did was to clean the place up by sweeping the floors and removing all unnecessary items.  Then I rearranged several large planters and pots to get maximum sunlight.  Lastly, I found a cushioned, green, and metallic bench that fit perfectly in the sitting area.  I topped it all off with some lighting strewn up on the ceiling to add some warmth during the evenings.

The greenhouse looked more spacious and had more function by the time I was done with it.  I hope to go back to work on the rest of this very cool space.

Week #6:  Helping a Friend with Craigslist


I have a dear friend who has a sizable collection of household items that she amassed during her travels all over the world.  She has been wanting to pare down all of her belongings and asked me if I could give her a tutorial on how to sell her items on Craigslist.

I first started with the vintage BMW that she wanted to sell.  I taught her how to play with the photography settings on her iphone in order to post photos that made her items look more attractive to a potential buyer.  Then I went through each step of posting an item for sale directly on the Craigslist website.

In addition to the BMW, I staged several furniture pieces into a living room format and took lots of photos from different angles. Lastly, I used chalk to create artwork for a wall in her guest bedroom.

Needless to say, we got a lot accomplished over a lengthy afternoon.  We even managed to drink wine and reminisce about all kinds of memories.  I’m proud to say that the BMW I posted received a HUGE response from buyers.  Over 70 of them made inquiries within the first few hours after the post went live.  I was very happy to help my friend with this.

Week #7: Nashville Rescue Mission

I had a very hectic week and decided to make another food donation of canned goods to the Nashville Rescue Mission.

Week #8: A bicycle for my Sister


My sister Lette’s birthday falls on the last week of January.  For the last year, she has undergone aggressive treatment for breast cancer.  To celebrate both her birthday and the recent diagnosis of being cancer free, I made a plan to get her a bicycle as a gift.  I could have gotten her a gift certificate to some trendy store or even taken her out to lunch like I have in the past.  This time, I wanted to give her a gift that came with benefits.  A cancer-free bill of health creates an opportunity to live a better life.  A bicycle provides lots of exercise, time outdoors, fresh air, exploration, and easy transportation.  I wanted to give her all of these things.

So, I did a bit of research and even took her to a local bike shop to get a sense of what kind of bike would work.  In the end, I had a friend who lived in Murfreesboro who was selling a bike that accommodated my sister’s height.  It was a vintage Gary Fisher mountain bike, and my sister has been riding it in her neighborhood ever since.

So that’s it for February.  More generosity beckons .  .  .