“But what if it all goes right? What if it all works out? What if the stars line up and good luck rains down? What if you chase your dream and it changes your whole life? What if it all goes right?” (What if it all Goes Right – Melissa Lawson)
If you asked me yesterday, my life was pretty terrible and this post would have a completely different feel. But surprisingly today, I am feeling a bit better about things, and here’s why…
It’s been a while since my last post. On my off weeks, when I’m not performing, I feel like nothing super post-worthy is happening, so it seems that they are coming every other week now. Until our world is turned upside down in two weeks when we start tour prep. But that’s another subject.
So my off week was good, except for the fact that I lack motivation, so while I should have been writing music for my next performance, I pretty much didn’t. So when last weekend came and I needed to have things ready for Hammertime on Monday, I had to scramble. What a surprise. But I had been working on a song with my friend Shannon and so we were able to finish that one up and rehearse it, barely. It was frustrating actually because schedules are getting crazy with rehearsals and studio times and everything, so getting in rehearsals can be tough. So times didn’t work out, and as an entire band, we practiced the song for about 10 minutes. It was crazy and I was stressed and felt sick about it and was quite frustrated. Not to mention the fact that I didn’t even pick a second song. Warren had mentioned that this week he wanted people to do some covers that stretched them outside their typical genre. He said he might choose some for some people, but we never heard anything else from him. So I didn’t even choose another song. But some of my classmates were convinced that I needed to do “Wide Awake” by Katy Perry. It’s kind of a joke because on the first Sunday we were here, during our “church” time, Warren played that song and video first thing and we like analyzed it for church. And we have revisited it a time or two since then also.
So Hammertime was a complete disaster as I had imagined it would be. We were not together at all and not comfortable with the music. We basically played it (poorly) and Warren stopped us and asked why it wasn’t good and had a little discussion about how the fault falls back on me for not having it rehearsed, which I was prepared for, it was still just frustrating because it wasn’t really my fault, but it becomes my fault anyway. And he didn’t even really work with the band because it was still just at a point where it was so band, he just said next. And I didn’t have a second song, and he agreed that it would be interesting to see me do “Wide Awake”. So that was that.
We rehearsed more. I never felt comfortable with the songs, mostly with Wide Awake. It just didn’t lock in this week like I feel like we did previously. Come show time on Thursday, yep, freaking out. From the moment I woke up on Thursday I felt sick. Seriously, the instant my eyes opened I know it was show day and I felt sick to my stomach from that moment on.
The first song, the original I co-wrote with Shannon was called “Eyes to See” and it went alright. I knew the song really well, and certainly could’ve sung it better, but it was okay. Wide Awake had the potential to be really cool. One of my friends and members of my band, Nathan, is really good with MIDI sequencing, and he made this sick sequence for it and was playing Synth and Moog bass and it was really sweet. And the lights they had programmed were awesome. Only thing that wasn’t awesome: me. I had to start before the music, and so I was freaking out about that. I “got my note” from the Synth between songs, but it didn’t stick, and I missed it. And once I’m off, I pretty much stay off. It is real hard for me to recover. Especially in front of a crowd of people that I don’t know, but I know they are all musicians and in the music industry. Which is certainly not comfortable. So I was off probably 3/4 of the song. Not until the second chorus did I finally get back on, and even then it was shaky. It was absolutely just as terrible as it could have been. It really just makes me feel like crap because I am in this community of incredibly talented musicians, and I just feel like I am so far below their level, it is very frustrating to me.
But then at Game Tape earlier today, I was ready for the worst. I was just sure I was going to get torn apart, because I totally deserved it. I just prayed he wouldn’t play the second song, since we all knew it was a train wreck. Surprisingly, he was in a rather good mood and Game Tape was not painful at all. He didn’t play either of my songs at all, because he said we didn’t need to listen to them again (which obviously means they sucked, but I was fine with it because it meant we didn’t have to listen to them), but the other part of what he said to me was the part that turned my week around.
The night before at the show, Warren came up to me right after my set. I was worried, but he said “I think I figured out what your talent is.” I had no idea what he was getting at, but he said that the original song was “pretty decent”. Which is a pretty good compliment from him. But he said he never wanted to hear me sing Katy Perry again, which I was totally good with, because I never wanted to go through that again. So at Game Tape he revisited the subject in front of the group. He said that I was 2 for 2 right now. Both the songs I had written worked really well in my style of music and had good form and were good songs. He said there have been other good songs this semester, but it was rare for both of a persons original songs so far to be good. He suggested that from this point I write a song a week until the end of the semester. If they keep being good, he said he would need to talk to me before the semester is out. That was probably the coolest thing I have ever heard, because it sounded so promising. Of course, now the pressure is super on and I will probably be pickier and more nervous with writing. I just hope this streak continues. Of course I have received a lot of help with my songs from those that I co-wrote with. It was just a really cool thing to hear, because he legitimately sounded like this is not necessarily out of the realm of possibilities if I keep writing good songs.
I have always wanted to be a singer. And I was extremely afraid when coming to this program that something would happen that would take me away from being a performer. Whether it was being told I wasn’t good enough, or being told I might could make it at something else. And I always thought I would really be opposed to that, because singing was what I was meant to do. And now that is actually what is happening. I am being pulled towards songwriting, which was never something I imagined could happen. I am really curious/nervous to see what the rest of this semester brings and where I am led.
So what if it all goes right? But right isn’t where you thought it would be? The line in this song that says “what if you chase your dream and it changes your whole life?” kind of has a new meaning now. I am chasing my dream. It is changing my life. But definitely not in the way I thought it would.