We sadly but very proudly celebrated Our Girl’s life on Sunday here with her family at Temple and then had a party of epic proportions at their beautiful home. It was brilliant in every way. Wish you were here. There was a glitch that threw off the live feed, for which we apologize, but we’ll be posting a a few highlights. Here’s one.
Love and light, TEAM OHANA
Our Sweet Ohana.
Remarks delivered July 26, 2020 by Christian Josi
Thank you all for your extraordinarily beautiful remarks. Being the cleanup hitter is tougher than I imagined....
This is my first time in a temple. I want to thank God, our Rabbi, and the congregation for the honor.
She loved this House. She loved our Rabbi and she treasured her faith. I'm told by her parents that her Bat Mitzvah here was one of the best moments of her life. Shalom, my friends.
One morning not long ago, perplexed by the sudden loss of Our Ohana whilst walking on the beach at dawn, an "obscure" song came thru my phone...it went something like (sing it):
The wild and windy night
That the rain washed away
Has left a pool of tears
Crying for the day
Why leave me standing here?
Let me know the way
Why leave us standing here, Lord? I wondered, whilst thinking of her family, friends, fans and her devoted production team. We've tried desperately together to do such great things, I thought...and we were getting there. We really were getting there. With Our Ohana gently at the helm. Those were the thoughts streaming through my head as the sun rose that morning. (Truth be told, many similar mornings to this day, but I am talking about the first one now).
Then, as if she were speaking to me, I listened over and over to the "Let me know the way" part of that classic lyric...looking up to the morning sky...and a thought occurred.
A long and winding road brought Ohana and me together. It was Dr. Keith Ablow's idea, actually, who is here with us in spirit and video. He asked me if I would listen to her work on SoundCloud and if I thought there was a "there" there. And I did. When our winding roads eventually crossed in real life, I was jaded and she was...what's the word...uncertain, perhaps. Certainly insecure.
Two Broken people, really, for different or maybe not so different reasons. Hence our mutual decision to call her beautiful debut album "The Broken," I suppose? Who knows. We didn't ever speak a lot though we spent a good deal of time together. We didn't have to speak, really. We just read each other and...we did our work. Perhaps with the help of a little Fireball on occasion. We would see each other upon my arrival in town for sessions and just hug and nod. It was go-time. And we went. She was amazing in studio. She listened, she learned, she stood her ground when she felt like it, and she was just...an artist by every definition. She ran on an artistic instinct that is just plain highly uncommon. She is and was a superstar.
She helped me love music again, and I hope I helped her navigate her own Long and Winding Road at least a bit and at least for a small while. It was perhaps the most rewarding experience of my life.
Her father once said something to me while we were all working at Pyramid Studios in NYC about our partnership which I will never, ever forget and I won't share in detail. He knows, I know, and it is our quiet treasure. It had to do with her knowing peace and hope via our work together with our team. I get calm from knowing that. I love you, friend.
With her loss, which we commemorate here together today, I permanently commit myself to not giving up on music and music education, on young people, particularly those in any sort of distress whatsoever. Ohana left us with a great deal of multimedia work--she's like Tupac or Prince, really, there's a vault--and you'll be hearing and seeing things from her for a very long time, all of which will benefit the aforementioned causes, thanks to the decisions of her family.
Her kind, wonderful, beautiful family.
I started with the words of Lennon and McCartney and I'll start the wrap with those of Our Ohana...
It’s been a long day
It’s been a long week
It’s been a long year
Hell, it’s been a long life...
Well. Not quite long enough, my beautiful, dear mermaid friend. Not nearly. But it will be a long life because your legacy lives within us. We are left standing here, crying for the day, still wondering why, but knowing you did, in fact, help us know the way. And in your honor, we shall follow it. Missing you horribly all the while, yet knowing that you are at much deserved peace and that your sweet spirit is alive and well...you will live in our hearts and lift us up till the end of days entirely. I don't know right now how we are going to heal but we can simply pray that the pain eases with time. We, together, look to God today, in this holy place, for guidance.
I can't end this without sending love and respect to our production team, who came to love her quickly and dearly. Dre and the Ghidrah crew, the great Christopher Makos, Peter Wise, Patty Connolly, who I believe is here today (dear Patty...), the team at Pyramid Studios, Rebel, Harry Allen, John di Martino, Keith Ablow and Tiffany Bartholomew....God bless you all. She adored you all, and you gave her power.
To the family--her extraordinary, extraordinary Mom, and Dad...I will love you forever and I will stand with you till I breathe my last breath.
And then there's her brother. Wonderful, sweet, funny young man. Just wrecked his sweet Benz, actually! Massive talent. We love you like there is no tomorrow, buddy. Stand with me please. (pause) We adore you just as Ohana did. You have an amazing life unfolding before our very eyes, my man. Keep your eye on the ball, keep your beloved sister's sweet mermaid spirit in your heart, and LIVE LARGE.
I love you all and I am grateful for this honor. Being the father of daughters of a similar age has helped make this perhaps the most difficult thing I've ever done. But paying tribute and thanking God for her, with you, in this blessed temple, is at the same time a true privilege. May Our Girl Rest in eternal peace and may we celebrate her memory like mad. Forever. Count your blessings, my dear friends...and love one another first and foremost. Now more than ever. Thank you. (look up) ....and thank YOU.