Musically, I want to perform and write and create from my own mind, but I also want to help others achieve the dream they want to hear out of a pair of speakers. I want to travel the world playing music for people. I want to have a home base where people can come to me to prepare a record so they can do the same. My goal isn't to make others happy with my music, or to make trillions of dollars, it's to connect with people in the best way I know how. I was having this conversation with a close friend of mine last night as we walked home. He asked me why I create. I told him that I do it to feel more like me. Creating music, placing a microphone, moving a fader, listening to the world around me - all those things make me feel more complete. It would be nice if my art was also a source of income that could sustain my lifestyle comfortably, but I don't do it to just reach that goal. Before I can make moves to make present it to the public and try to make it a business, I have to be sure that I am satisfied with what I've done. It has to bring a smile to my face first.
I'm thinking about all of this and making plans to release something that I am so happy with right now. I have taken two years to work out all the details, to mix and produce an album that reflects and speaks to who and what I am. It represents me as a person, and it is my voice. I start to wonder how I will speak about the project, as it so personal and tells a not so subtle story, or at least I think so. Someone halfway across the world won't know the people I sing about. These songs represent me in my current state, and I am always in motion lately.
It's taken me a while to understand why I create art. It's taken an even longer while to be able to call myself an artist. In understanding why I do it, I've had to change a lot of my expectations, behaviours, my language, and my vision of myself. At this point in my life, I am a more confident, self-aware version of me. In becoming this, I've also realized where my fears, insecurities, and prejudices are hiding, and I've also had to take a close look at them, which can be exhausting and terrifying!
But I'm happier then I ever have been. I feel more complete. I understand my place and responsibility in the world and I feel energized into continuing the forward motion. I am always in motion. I have to make time to slow down and re-energize. Part of all this is being active in social justice. I consider myself a pacifist. I believe progress can only be achieved through non-violent action. Which is to say that, when I can find the courage, I will speak up against discrimination against any particular group of people. I will let the person know that I am not attacking them personally, but I believe that their ideas and words are dangerous and can cause much harm to the people around them. This can put me in situations where I don't feel safe, but it also helps me to build more courage. It helps me to form important bonds with people, even people who disagree with what it is I'm speaking out against.
I got back from another meeting for the For The Love Of Winnipeg project. I have been asked to be on the steering committee, which means I am an important voice in shaping the ideas and engaging the resources of the group. This could potentially be a really big group! I would encourage you all to join in on the conversation. The next meeting will be held on August 8th at the Park Theatre in Winnipeg. No matter what your political leanings, no matter how you identify as a person, I would encourage you to us the discussion.
I'm going to run out into the storm before it's over! I want a shower, and there's all that water out there! Here's Peanut again!
Have a good rest of your Sunday!