I was reading Matt Nathanson's latest blog, and a bit of it struck me. (He types like an ADD 12 year old, so I did some purely technical editing here.)
There are rare moments when i feel confident in my job as a songwriter, as a singer, as a musician. True, pure confidence, and it is super empowering, and it always leads to writing more songs. There is this rad momentum that goes along with true confidence that you can't get any other place. It doesn't last, but if you stay out of it's way long enough... that's where the songs come from. That's where you allow yourself to just ride creativity and really cool shit happens.
The flip side to this, unfortunately, is more common. Being insecure, being scared, and feeling entitled. Seeing success in others, ignoring all the good shit you have and getting pissed because you feel like you deserve more.
That's my default setting.
It takes a lot to see that this thinking is a dead end, and even when I do, it doesn't stop the thoughts from coming. But this is all pretty human stuff. Everybody goes through this in one way or another. What i am telling you is not a revelation.
Every time I feel entitled, every time I start thinking I am not getting what i deserve in this business. I am put in my place by the music. There is always a record, or a song that blows my mind out of my head. That reminds me I still have a very long way to go before I'm allowed to feel entitled to anything. I guess that's what great art does though, it puts things into perspective, and at the same time, it kicks out the walls. It blows your mind...humbles you, and at the same time it lights you up and makes you feel completely unstoppable.
It's just interesting to me that someone who DOES deserve more than he gets out of the industry manages to keep this perspective, when apparently there comes a point where you have all of the success that you could want and still manage to come off like you're entitled to more of it. Maybe that's an attitude that comes along with making decisions that get your personal life splashed across the tabloids, I'm not sure. Maybe it comes along with falling in "love" with high profile blondes, running over the people that helped to shape you in to who you are, and alienating the fan base that helped to fund an enviable guitar collection and a watch fetish. If that's true, that high profile success turns you into a person who has to actively try to convince others has not turned in to a douche, then I hope the Matt Nathanson's, Ari Hests, and Jason Mraz's never get there.