The musician's life...perceptions

David AckertSingers and Musicians are some of the most driven, courageous people on the face of the earth. They deal with more day-to-day rejection in one year than most people do in a lifetime. Every day, they face the financial challenge of living a freelance lifestyle, the disrespect of people who think they should get real jobs, and their own fear that they'll never work again. Every day, they have to ignore the possibility that the vision they have dedicated their lives to is a pipe dream. With every note, they stretch themselves, emotionally and physically, risking criticism and judgment. With every passing year, many of them watch as the other people their age achieve the predictable milestones of normal life - the car, the family, the house, the nest egg. Why? Because musicians and singers are willing to give their entire lives to a moment - to that melody, that lyric, that chord, or that interpretation that will stir the audience's soul. Singers and Musicians are beings who have tasted life's nectar in that crystal moment when they poured out their creative spirit and touched another's heart. In that instant, they were as close to magic, God, and perfection as anyone could ever be. And in their own hearts, they know that to dedicate oneself to that moment is worth a thousand lifetimes.” - David Ackert, LA Times

Kev Rowe CD'sauthor Richard FloridaAs I have progressed along the road of my life, every now and then, there arises a little chip on my shoulder that mixes with the feeling of angst that I could never quite identify or explain to another person. Then, I ran across this quote posted by a musical colleague of mine Kev Rowe on Facebook today. In the excerpt taken from an article written by David Ackert for the L.A. Times, Mr. Ackert finds the words I could not and shines a light on what it means to consider yourself part of the "Creative Class" (a term coined by author Richard Florida in his book "Rise of the Creative Class"). The excerpt speaks in terms of musicians, but it applies to any self infused creative endeavor. Those who reach stardom or find financial security through their art at a level that allows a comfortable lifestyle and somewhat worry-free "retirement" are but a small percentage. For most, it is as described above, living with the dichotomy of joyous artistic expression and the frustration of the "artist" stereotypes.

I have no answers for that dilemma, only hopes that attitudes change and we begin to value those who bring color, depth and feeling to our lives as much as we do those who bring all the material goods that we value so highly, lust for and can't seem to live without. My position here should be pretty clear; society's value systems are somewhat upside down to me and I am doing my little part to create some change. Thank you if you have been reading. I hope you find the desire and means do the same in your life.