Making the Decision
In my last post, which has been some time ago now (I am working on developing a rhythm to the many facets of this pursuit), I explained how I had unintentionally invested a good bit of time into music. I wrestled with the value of doing so. As I reflected on how important music had been in my life, I determined that I should make a shift from musical hobby to musical pursuit. This decision did not come easy. I have lived my whole life believing that a career in music was a pipe dream, an unrealistic, idealistic fancy. While I don't have any delusions of grandeur or of becoming the worlds next big pop sensation (not sure I'd want that anyway), I recognize that the internet has changed many things. Gone are the days of the absolute gatekeepers, the days when a person had to be signed to a label to be able to record music or the necessity to have a radio station play one's music for it to be heard. Now with the internet, a person can find a niche and market directly to his/her own fans/patrons. Does that make it easy? No. It is a business, and years of experience have taught me that business can be very challenging. But, possible? Yes. That's all I need.
Planting the Flag
edited, and posted it online in a single day because I felt convinced I needed to start the new year with this declaration. This set me in motion and accelerated my investigation into the modern musical world and into exploration of my own identity as an artist.
In March of 2020, during the beginning of a very strange time, an unexpected opportunity presented itself. A recording studio in Boston's ad came across one of my social feeds, probably because I had been actively looking into musical production content. The ad said they were looking for new artist that needed a start. They would provide all the guidance and tools necessary to raise funds to record an album. This immediately resonated with me for two reasons: 1) I knew that in order to have a business, a person needs a product. This would be an opportunity for me to create a professional level product, an album of well produced original music. 2) Having spent many years building a business, I recognized the time and frustration saving value of following a proven template. This was the crowdfunding coaching they offered. There was also a third reason that this ad jumped out at me. I had more than a dozen demo songs that I had recorded on my own that a I had just spent the last part of 2019 trying to determine what to do with. Naturally, I submitted my music, and I said, "What will be, will be." If you are just joining my journey now, then it is my pleasure to inform you that my music was accepted, the crowdfunding went very well and I am in the process of recording this album (you can check out a bit about it here).
Creating a Path
I would love to say that I know exactly where I am going and how I am going to get there. I do not. However, this album has kindled the fire of momentum. I have been researching with new purpose and intent. I have changed my mindset from thinking in wishful terms to determined thinking searching for the how. There is a saying, for which I cannot find the source, "Do the work and let the rewards come or not as they may." I think this is why I strongly feel I need to pursue music. It is the only activity that I can wholly pursue with joy simply for the love of the process. I do desire a reward, but not to make the activity any more meaningful, simply to cover the economic realities needed to continue to go through the process. I am still struggling with how my own responsibility and effort is balanced with resting in the work of God, but ultimately, I lean on a psalm, "Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it." (Psalm 127:1). This does not keep me from working, but overworking as it helps me to keep trusting that there is a plan and resources that outweigh my effort and understanding.
You can read more about my process on the home page.
Hey, I'm Samuel Irvin!
As I sit at the drawing board again, I am overwhelmed by the possibilities, opportunities and potential outcomes of following any of them.
At the beginning of 2019 I would not have guessed that I would be chasing music again. I had been working to build a small service business since I met my would be wife at music tech school. With the economy seemingly humming along nicely and our small city growing rapidly, I found myself with a bit of my most desired success indicator, time. I have sacrificed much in the way of financial gains to develop a path that allowed me some of this precious resource.
Subconsciously, I may have known that I always wanted to return to music, but I don't know that I could have told you how or what I wanted that return to look like. However, in 2019 I found myself using that time to return to the language of my youth. I started recording rock music demos. By the end of the year I had more than a dozen fully fleshed out demos. I fully questioned myself for having spent so much time on this 'waste' of time. But, by January 1, 2020, I had determined that I must double down and pursue, as seriously as I know how, this endeavor.
Still having no real idea what to do, what happened next has been an amazing catalyst for this journey. Stay tuned...