I was invited to join a singer songwriter workshop a few years back. Actually I think it may have been more like 15 years ago…….wow time flies! I found myself in the company of some of the most talented people I had ever met. I will tell you that it was quite intimidating and I almost quit after the first night. I think there was a lot of fear and not much confidence which led to a lot of esoteric pompous conversation that I found irritating. As the walls began to come down and we got to know each other, it was a different conversation altogether. You could see the “mutual admiration” clubs forming. We were all very talented and different but we also began to see all the ways that our individual journeys were the same. Some had had some small successes some (like myself) none at all but it had no effect on the way we saw each other. It really did become all about the music. I forged some really great friendships and at least one that I still count among my dearest friends. For some years I spoke to most of them, worked with some and celebrated as I went to CD release parties and shows. I have lost touch with them all but carry the memories of them singing and playing (or at least attending) my wedding.
I suppose that some of the reason I lost touch with them is due to the fact that I quit playing out and about when I started my family. I do think about them and look back on that time very fondly. It was a time that I became very clear about what I wanted my life to look like in terms of the music business and still hold that vision for myself even though I am not there yet.
I remember one night, early on, when the guy who was running the workshop said something that resonates with me still. He talked about the “community” of artists. How vital those relationships can be. You lean on, inspire, and support each other. You share the journey in ways that others might not get. I think about the times that I was writing with one of them or preparing for a showcase (really fun nights). The creative process, especially when shared, is life affirming at it’s very least. I love the conversations that take place after hours in the studio, trying to figure out where to go next. Listening to the music and letting it dictate the path. When shared, the process takes on a whole new light, one that I yearn for.
I was reminded of this yesterday, as I was laying in my bed with a bad back, and watching video after video on youtube. I came across and interview with one of my favorite duos The Weepies. I watched them talk about their own processes and found myself green with envy. “I Want That!” I really really want that! I miss the exchange of ideas and the mutual admiration and respect.
I am posting a link to the interview. Check it out and leave your own thoughts.