A Beautiful DetermiNation
Recording executive Matt Diamond's new digital album to benefit American Cancer Society
New York City - (October 14, 2011) What is your inspiration? What motivates you to keep pushing forward, no matter how big the hill or how tough the battle?
On April 23rd, 2010, Matt Diamond’s idea of a battle was the 10K he had just run through Central Park. But after the race, his definition of the word would change forever. Matt’s cousin Shawn confessed on their walk home that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Matt remembers she shared the news of her diagnosis with a nonchalant undertone, as if wasn’t that big of a deal. “Perhaps this was Shawn’s way of coping, to never allow the disease to take over. As time would soon prove, the disease picked the wrong battle; cancer did not stand a chance with my cousin Shawn.”
Shawn would quickly become the most courageous person Matt had ever met. From the moment of her diagnosis, Shawn would apply the same detail-oriented strategies that she uses to succeed in everyday life and applied them to beating cancer…..and it worked. From meeting with various doctors and handling difficult decisions and fears that would cause the average person to break, Shawn remained poised and resilient, handling her diagnosis more like a demanding assignment, than an illness.
After Shawn’s diagnosis, Matt was motivated to run the 2010 ING New York City Marathon in support of her, who was undergoing treatments of chemotherapy in addition to dealing with complications from surgery. Matt joined the American Cancer Society’s DetermiNation program – an inspiring and powerful movement that enables endurance athletes to fight cancer while receiving training support and encouragement.
The morning of the race Matt felt strong and clear-headed. “During the race, any feelings of aches, pains or fatigue were quickly thought out of existence as I would think of how slight they pale in comparison to what my cousin had endured. Shawn, who was recovering from her last chemo treatment at the time of the race, was stationed by 118th Street and 1st Avenue. As I passed the mile 18 marker, I saw Shawn, stopped for a few photos, gave her my sweatshirt and continued on. I could not describe how overwhelmed I became with energy, feeling as if the race had just began. I was now baring my Team DetermiNation singlet, which made me easy to identify through the their supporters that were stationed throughout the race. Their support made you feel invincible as I completed the remaining six miles of the race without looking back, shaving off as much as one minute per mile as compared to the previous 18.”
Although Matt won’t be running the marathon this year, he decided to express his support for not just Shawn, but for anyone who has endured progress through struggle, by orchestrating a song that will be championed through his boutique independent record label, Coalmine Records. The song will be made available for sale through all major digital retailers on October 18th, 2011, whereby the net revenue generated will be donated to the American Cancer Society.
“The title of the record is “Beautiful”, in honor of Shawn, who like so many others, has focused on the beauty both around us and within us to endure.”
The record proudly features recording artists Big K.R.I.T., Talib Kweli, Outasight and Mela Machinko, all whom have volunteered their time and energy to dedicate them selves to this cause. Furthermore, “Beautiful” includes powerful testimonials from several cancer survivors, including Shawn, that are included in both the song’s introduction and close. The result is a triumphant and uplifting ode to survival and perseverance.
To people facing cancer, a diagnosis often feels like a marathon, an uphill battle that must be fought and won. Matt hopes anyone facing such a battle will find inspiration, empowerment, and support in his song. For more information on the American Cancer Society’s DetermiNation program, visit www.cancer.org. To learn more about “Beautiful” visit http://coalminerecords.com.
About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early; helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery; and by fighting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation’s largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing more than $3.4 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us any time, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org.