Choose Joy

I’m not sure that there has been a larger source of sadness in my life than the thought of one of my parents dying. I sure didn’t like typing that sentence. I remember how devastated I’d get every time they left me with a babysitter because I was so afraid it was the last time I’d see them. That fear had receded a little further into my mind in recent years, but was right back front and center when I found out my Mom (Mother) had been diagnosed with breast cancer last summer. I gave her and my dad a hug and told them I needed a minute to myself, and proceeded to take a long tear-filled stroll around the neighborhood, probably in Polar Bear Pajama Pants, looking like an insane person. I revisited those feelings, got them out, and then decided that I needed to use my abilities to create something to bring her joy during this experience, worrying about it wasn’t going to make it any easier. I tried to write the song, but it was having a hard time coming out, as attempts at songs about my parents have seemed to in the past. It took until the night before her surgery at about midnight, but the song finally arrived and I worked on it til 5 AM so she would have it before surgery. We ultimately decided it was probably best to wait ’til after, on account of TP (Tear Potential). So instead I got to listen with her after while she was in a drug induced haze. And then again the next day, like it was the first time again! 

I am grateful to say that everything has gone smoothly and things are getting back to normal, I know not everyone is as lucky. To celebrate, we went and got family tattoos, mine (pictured above) is the Motto from Mother’s song and is a template of her handwriting.

For Mother’s Day I wanted to give the song some new life and flesh it out a little bit. So I made a new version. While I was recording the vocals, the idea for this Fridge Magnet Lyric Video came, and through some incredible help from a wonderful friend to spell everything out, and pestering my brother to edit the video in a tiny time frame, we were able to make it work. And I figured it would be a good excuse to raise some money to help make sure fewer and fewer people have to go through this experience, both personally and as a family. So here we are…

I hope you enjoy it, take some time to breathe, donate, and CHOOSE JOY!

Orange Slices

Spotify link:

*Orange Slices is under the wrong artist on Spotify.

Everybody always says “this is the most important election ever.” But I’ve never said it. So…THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION EVER. We have a choice right now to continue down a path of endless fear and disregard for equality, or we can choose to love and treat each other the way we always talk about treating everyone but have never fully followed through on. I choose option #2, and the first step towards that is VOTING. Voting for good people. They’re out there. We deserve better. But only if we vote.

For Chicagoans, go to for everything you need to make a decision.

About Wallace

Hello. My name is Wallace. Before you ask, I am 6’9”, Yes, I play basketball, but only recreationally. And our weather is the same weather. My interests include pondering why we are hurdling through the nothingness (or the very much somethingness?) of space on a rock for seemingly no reason, transcribing those thoughts and feelings into song form, and then recording those songs for other confused “humans” to help them cope with and celebrate the absurdities, extremes, and monotonies that we encounter on a daily basis. If something happens in day to day life and makes me feel a thing, then I’ll probably write about it, If you’re talking to me and say something like “strong opinions, weakly held,” I’m probably going to write that phrase down in my phone and use it in a song later. And if we’re still talking, but it seems like I spaced out, the first verse is done.

I’m trying to experience as much of the joy and bittersweet wonder (pain) that life has to offer in my time here, make some music, and generally abide by a few basic principles:

  1. Do what makes you feel good (Within Reason)
  2. Be kind to others (As in, if the thing that makes you feel good makes another person feel not good, then don’t do the thing)
  3. Repeat

If that sounds like you, then come on over! Even if it doesn’t, I’d love to talk. There’s new music to listen to, plenty of applesauce, and the pizza JUST GOT HERE.



Artwork by David Gilbertsen and Joy Wallace

Original Images by Therese Niedbala