Committing Social Suicide and Becoming a Real Artist

Just like that.  I committed social suicide on NPR yesterday afternoon.  

Our local NPR station is WNIJ, and most Sunday nights, Carl Nelson has a show called Live from Studio A.  Yesterday afternoon, I recorded a few tunes with him and talked music, my restaurant, and...<cringe>...politics.  Even though I've written several political tunes, when I'm out in the world, I'm largely silent on my views.  

Until now.

One of the songs I played will likely offend absolutely everybody. Truly...everybody.  The show won't be broadcast until the summer, so I guess I've got a few months left to enjoy my relatively positive reputation.  But when the show airs, I assume that will change.  We'll see.  I have a show on Thursday night, and I'm going to play the song there too to test just how damaging it is.

But the upshot?  For the first time ever, I felt like a real artist.

As a creator trying to make a living from my creations, I feel a constant pressure to make things people will like.  Consequently, my creations are generally "nice."  Which is all well and good.  I like nice.  Nice is nice.  But when I'm not feeling so nice, it feels stifling.  I feel like a sham when I pander to an audience's desire to feel a certain way.

I've always admired real-deal artists, the ones who take big chances.  They risk making people feel uncomfortable.  They value their self-expression more than being admired.  And in doing that, they are eventually admired for their authenticity.  

Yesterday, I became authentic.  Maybe not popular, but at least I was honest.

And today, I feel lighter, happier, and more at peace.  How 'bout that.

My takeaway from the experience is that self-expression isn't always pretty, but it's vital to our peace of mind.  We Americans are fortunate enough to live in a country that protects our right express ourselves, and we should take advantage of it.  Being able to sleep soundly at night is worth more than being liked.  

Last night--for the first time in months--I slept the sleep of the dead. It was incredible.  Reader, I wish you that kind of deep peace this week.  I'll see you next Sunday. -Em

 

2 comments

  • Bobbie Thorne

    Bobbie Thorne Atbtet42@comcast.net

    You are a plus to our world and it’s situation! I’m so pleased to know your inner being And that it is being made known to others!

    You are a plus to our world and it’s situation!
    I’m so pleased to know your inner being
    And that it is being made known to others!

  • Emily Hurd

    Emily Hurd

    Back at you, Bobbie! xoxo

    Back at you, Bobbie! xoxo

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