Memoirs Of A Northeast Ohio Artist: Reflection Time

Yeah ok.. It’s been a while since I have posted a memoir. Don’t judge me. LOL.. Nah but for real.. The balancing act between the day job and the transition to music career is a constant thing. I have to make a good representation of the company I work for and to whom I am grateful to have a job. At the same time I want to be the change I seek around here. I say “around here” because I have to bloom where I am planted.

Locally I have noticed a lot of ideals that define music as “excellent” is quite contradictory to the ideals of excellence that has come before. I want to say it’s a generational thing but that’s not entirely true. One thing I think is that there’s no mentorship with the younger musicians/artists. In my experience, I was blessed to have my an uncle, a cousin and their friends to show me things. I also had music in my school as a part of the general curriculum. I also had examples of groups like Earth Wind and Fire, Chicago, Prince and The Revolution, Santana, Parliament-Funkadelic, Rush (this list is ongoing) to be examples of what giving a performance that goes beyond explanation look like. This was my standard and I saw local groups back in the day reach and sometimes go beyond that standard.

Live_At_B-Side_2006_Mic_Check.wav(my band live in Clevleand Heights, Ohio The B-Side as backing band for Bill – spoken word artist – Spoken Word Concert Series 2006)

When speaking of such standards on a local level, the issue of budget comes up. But I remember everybody in the band chipping in and pooling their recourses to give a show that was bigger than life. More importantly it was really about the creativity. All those guys in my uncle and cousin’s band all had day jobs. They all had the expectation that no one is going to give them anything. Looking back on those guys, they were “average” in skill level individually but collectively they were colossal!

My hope for the change I seek is to be the example of perseverance through rejection, the nay says from local cliques, and the beacon of creativity and musical excellence, to give my local audience a musical experience that defies explanation, to be the standard in which the bar is raised/set, and synonymous to ideals of musical innovation…starting right here where I am planted!