Watching the Grammys last night I was struck by how much one has to give up to do something they love, nobody embodies that more than the musician who spends years on the road away from their families and their things and the people they love to provide us with music that soothes our soul and becomes the soundtrack we live our lives to.
Even the overnight success doesn’t get there by picking up an instrument and playing, there are years of practice and growth and learning. There are years of leaving their parents, their spouses and their children. Some are lucky and they get to do it in luxury but for the most part it is a path filled with traveling across the country and the world dealing with drunken people at 2 in the morning. It is the emptiness of coming home to an empty hotel room or giving into the all too available vices which probably add to the loneliness and heartache. And yet they do it, day after day, year after year. They love their music so much as to give up their very lives and their homes and become vagabonds only to entertain us.
It’s easy to watch the Grammys and see the beautiful Adele in a dress that maybe we wouldn’t have in our own closet and criticize her taste in dresses, but it is impossible to imagine the heartache and courage that goes behind putting that dress on, putting herself and her beautiful talents our there for the world to see.
Actors make movies and that is a difficult life filled with sacrifice also but only the musician lives with the words, the music, and the loneliness that comes from being successful. They usually start out writing songs in their rooms, listening to music, strumming their guitars and trying to recreate it or create something fresh and innovative. Then they have to have it produced and put out into the world and then comes the final indignity. All over the world there are judges deciding whether that work is worth $11.99. In these days there are so many ways to pirate music that even the meager sum the artist receives from each piece of art is smaller and smaller and it is harder and harder to keep their dreams alive. But yet the musician from the violinist in the subway to the Grammy award winning artist does it day after day only to please us, the audience.
So the next time you decide whether it is worth it to spend $100.00 to buy a concert ticket or $11.99 to buy a CD think of all the blood, sweat and tears that go behind that artist and gladly spend it, I certainly will. Congratulations to every artist who won yesterday and keeps making our soundtracks. We appreciate it really we do.