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DIY Musician 

DIY is Hard

If you are an Independent artist, you can either spend all your recording money on promotion and management or, you can do it yourself. DIY. 

The good thing about DIY stuff is that you have complete control of every word, every picture, every font and color and song. 

The bad thing is that DIY ie. create a website, a Spotify artist page, a Twitter account, Instagram, newsletter, timed song releases, email services, creating and growing fan bases, software platforms, digital distribution, PRO registration, copyrights, YouTube videos etc etc etc are so time consuming and left brained that the door to your right creative brain where all the magic happens, slams shut and now you’re a data processor. The last thing you ever pictured yourself doing. 

I know once set up is over and the maintenance process runs itself, it becomes easier to split your focus between creating music and creating content. 

One of the big problems for anyone who hasn’t been keyboarding since preschool is the lack of intuitiveness of the process. It’s the difference between the tortoise and the hare. Draggy and Zippy. 

Back when the internet was just a toddler, platforms were easier to navigate because they performed only simple functions. Now they do so many amazing things that one can’t understand how to accomplish even the simple tasks. 

Good thing is there is always someone to email or chat with that really doesn’t want you to give up. They may all be 14 year olds. Kudos to them for having patience with people who struggle with new technology. 

I tried to teach my mother how to use a computer to do her banking on an iPad for Facebook and her phone for texting. Every other day she would tell me that she wasn’t doing anything on electronics because it was too complicated. Mostly, she couldn’t remember her passwords. Then we would spend an afternoon getting new passwords because she would throw away the index cards I made for her. 

The final problem came when she installed a spam program that answered all her calls in Spanish. She was never able to access the messages on her phone again. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t figure out how to fix it. 

I had no more patience. 

Now I see how the world is changing so rapidly that at some point people feel left behind. I see it in my patients. Some have cell phones some use the push button phones at the bedside. 

I don’t want to be left behind yet. I will learn every platform if it kills me. 

See- I wrote this blog! Another small step. Score!

Life is Short 

The last year and a half has been hard on everybody. The Covid 19 pandemic is the defining event of our era. My grandparents had the Great Depression. My parents had the Viet Nam war. We got the pandemic. 

One thing we all got was a story. 

Some stories are about survival. Some stories are about emotional suffering and despair from isolation. There are stories about long awaited opportunities that vanished just within the dreamer's grasp. There was grief, loss, and uncertainty. 

But then there are also stories about creativity and motivation and lots of pet adoptions. Coping. Learning to paint, or  cook, and to appreciate nature and beauty. Lots of folks learned how to Zoom so they could be connected to others. Artists got tech savvy.  

Here's what I learned. Life is short. 

I am no stranger to death. I make my living as an RN in a busy urban hospital in Philadelphia. The pandemic was vicious. I was busy during the pandemic, covered in plastic and exhausted.  Then there was the fear. Lots of my co-workers got the virus. Most fared well. Others did not. I didn't get the virus. So random! 

I used to dream of writing songs for other people. I love sitting in my house and just thinking in song. Dreaming in song.I've played out with audiences and while I used to get extremely anxious about it, people seemed to enjoy it.  

Two years ago I decided to pursue a solo artist career. Why now? Am I too old? Why not?!!!! 

Writing for other people is fun. It's like acting. I got to be 18 again and worried about love. I got to be outlaw country or good old boy crooner. My big self question was who am I as an artist? What is it that I have to say? 

Between writing, recording, dodging illness, glitches with gear, others getting covid, I made a record. Three actually.  

I'm also one half of the Xconditionals, a San Diego based alt rock band with Margaret McClure. 

Now I'm just waiting for the perfect time and place to have a CD release event. Any minute now!

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