Do it for the love of it
Recently, I was invited to an album release party of a European entertainer, who has for many years made her home in Los Angeles.
I know that when I first met her years ago, she envisioned great stardom and was anxious and eager to achieve her place in the musical halls of fame. She has done more than that, as it turns out. She has become a true artist and entertainer. She has honed her craft, become wildly proficient writing lyrics in English, her adopted tongue. She has imbued her songs with intent, portent, beauty, fire, and pain. She has lived her path, and she has survived her struggles. She is performing internationally to loving audiences.
Are they arenas? Not necessarily. Sometimes. But a career is not designed for the goal of how many seats are in a performance venue. It is not a question of how many people are watching you, but what the audience you have – be it an audience of one or one thousand – is experiencing. If you can make people feel emotional, feel moved; if you can make people smile and sway to your uptempos, and lean in to listen to your ballads, you have done your job.
Fame – that elusive and desired butterfly few nets can catch – becomes the goal in itself to many aspiring songwriters and artists. But you cannot reach that goal by reaching for it. You can only get there by accident, as a result of loving what you do and doing what you love. The confluence of events that will catapult you to another level may come tomorrow, it may come in 25 years. None of us knows. But don’t waste your todays wasting away with longing for what you cannot control or foresee. Do it For the Love of It, and one day you will find you live in a state of creative joy, and that Fame is no longer the goal. And perhaps that’s when it will find you.