If you know me, you know that one of my favorite bands for the past 10 years has been Copeland. They're not just a band that I've listened to for a long time and love. Their music brings me back to a time and place that I can only describe as musically life-changing. I've written about this a little before, but I wanted to revisit it.

Throwback to college circa 2006 or so. I had a friend that introduced me to Copeland's music and would play it for me all the time. At that point in time, I hadn't listened to anything like it. I had never really listened to a band that wasn't popular or on the radio. It brought me to the realization that there was much more out there and I should be searching for it. I went on a musical journey of sorts that honestly made me the musician I am today and brought me to some of my favorite bands that I never would have discovered otherwise. It might sound really unimportant, but to this day I look back and think about how different I would be if this hadn't happened. It also led me to begin playing guitar, singing more, writing and recording, and that has become a huge part of my life.

Besides the discovery of new music, I got to know the band in a more personal way, because my friend was best friends with the guitarist's brother. They had grown up together, and their music was special for him because of that. I also met one of my best friends through him, and to this day we look back and share our memories of meeting, becoming instant sisters, and going to my first Copeland show all together. When the band decided to stop making music and touring a few years ago, a piece of my heart broke. I remember standing at their farewell show and reminiscing over what they mean to me and what their music has brought to me. And when they announced last year that they would be recording again, I was so happy.

Now their latest project is finally out, Ixora. They are bringing the thoughtful lyrics and incredible musicianship that they always have, but even better this time around. The record is dynamic and symphonic, using woodwinds and strings plus their familiar guitar and drum patterns. They have amazing talent both individually and as a whole, and it's been cool to call one of them a friend over the years and to have seen him grow into their legacy. I'm proud of him and what they've all produced, and I feel like a piece of me is going back to 2006 when I experienced them for the first time.

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