This CD of originals is Kimberly's debut album, taking several years to complete, featuring her R&B, Jazz, Soul and Pop influences. A few songs about adoption emotions are interwoven into the diverse array. Versatile Tony Axtell co-wrote and produced.
Words by Marissa Dodge Bartlett aka Misty:
In Korean mythology, the creation of the universe began with the goddess Mago who gave birth to two goddesses named Gung-hee and So-hee. The musical universe you're listening to began with a small goddess named Sung-hee. You may know her as Kimberly Michaels, but she first came into the world as Park Sung Hee in Seoul, Korea, near the Han River. She was found on the same day she was born, in a basket on the steps of an old building in the heart of Seoul city.
Six months later she was flown across the ocean to her adoptive family, and the very different world of Minnesota became her home. It was there Kimberly discovered her resonating love for music and her first instrument, the piano. Her parents sensed her ear for music and enrolled her in Suzuki lessons at age four. Her innate appreciation for music was evident even then; this intuitiveness, combined with her natural feel, is ever apparent in her singing. Music seems to flow naturally from and through her, and like the Four Rivers in Korea, the four musical rivers of R&B, Soul, Pop & Jazz move fluidly, yet powerfully, through her music and her soul.
As much as the waters of the rivers are part of Kimberly's passage, so are the stars reflected on its surface. The meaning of her birth name is prophetically clear: Sung-hee means "a star shines" or "a star is bright." As Sung-hee has followed her stellar course, note by note, song by song, her listeners have followed her luminous path and have been hoping for the release of this recording. A diverse and meaningful collection of songs, her CD simply titled “Kimberly Michaels”, is her soul's affirmation to the world she's traveled through and sung to for so long.
When she asks the profound question, "Whose Child Am I?" she finds her own answer; Kimberly belongs to the Universe, her spirit from God, her soul from Korea, and her heart from her Minnesota home. She's a daughter of music, and a sister in song; a creative artistic spirit and an honest communicator who reaches out from the realms she's traversed. To all those souls who might feel they have no roots, no family, no home, no love, or peace in spirit - and to those who feel they do - she reminds them to be thankful for what they have, and to celebrate each step on our various paths. Our creation is a daily process, in increments we evolve to our ultimate composition. Writing music began for her as a small, quiet child at her piano. Kimberly's voice and songs resonate with the ageless poetry of hope for all people, and the deep belief that no matter how far, wide, or serendipity the voyage, there's always something more than imagined waiting at the end of our journey.
Kimberly was born in Seoul, South Korea, as Park Sung Hee. At 6-months old, she was adopted & became Kimberly Falkman, growing up a Minnesotan, in a Swedish-Norwegian Lutheran family. Her classical training in Piano began at age 4, she learned Music Theory at age 7, and started singing & performing her own Pop & Classical Compositions around age 12.
Her self-written CD supports an awareness campaign for adoptees like herself as she partners with such organizations as the LA based Mixed Roots Foundation, and MN based Adoption Groups. Kimberly hopes to touch many people’s musical heartstrings with her universal messages and musical influences such as Sade, Aretha Franklin, India Arie, Chaka Khan & Whitney Houston.
Her love of R&B, Soul, Funk, Pop, Jazz, Gospel and Rock has led her down many paths, from working and living in LA to traveling the world. She’s found singing in Nightclubs and doing Corporate Parties, Festivals, Fundraisers & Weddings in Minneapolis/St Paul and around the country.
Kimberly worked and recorded at a small record label in West Hollywood. One of her Producers was Time Warner’s Wayne Vaughn (Earth, Wind & Fire), married to Wanda Vaughn (The Emotions). Some other world-renown Artists she's worked with: Stanley Clarke, George Duke, DeBarge, Cherelle & Ipso Facto. She was Background Vocalist to Alexander O'Neal, Sheila Raye Charles & Ebony Taye. She's opened for The Time, Lionel Richie, Carol King, Karen White and Frankie Beverly & Maze.
Along with having American Pride, Norwegian Pride and Minnesota Pride, Kimberly also has Adoptee Pride, Korean Pride and Asian Pride! Kimberly donates her time to working with Adoptees, performing for their fundraisers & events for the Children’s Home Society, MAKA & The Adopted Korean Connection.