Why should you care about any of this?

We live in a celebrity culture. This means that even those of us who realize that popularity does not equal quality have a hard time with the idea that the artists we enjoy are real people who interact with others outside their role as creator. Consequently, we really can't believe that some acquaintence of ours, some random guy that posted something about himself on a newsgroup, someone we went to high school with, might actually be creating something that stacks up to the stuff that we've already heard about from multiple sources (whether these be mass media or just a few recommendations by friends). Even respected "underground" music is generally delivered to us in this way.

Now, I'm obviously not in an objective position to evaluate my own work. I do know that lots of the songs I come up with haunt me, following me around making me hum them uncontrollably, even years after I write them. ..And I know that a good percentage of those people that have really gotten familiar with my style (like by having it thrust upon them through having been my roommate or my friend) find these songs as suitable a soundtrack to their lives as anything by the Beatles or any other popular band. I recall a local club owner telling my x-guitarist a while back that one of my songs ("I Like Life") was one of his very favorite songs. Ever. How many times has this happened to anyone you know?

We all should know by now that the music industry is difficult and draining, that for the most part only those willing to sacrifice every good thing in their lives to constant touring and self-promotion even have a shot, and that even then, there's a lot of luck, a lot of "who you know," a lot of perseverence in the face of continued rejection, and a lot of support needed from fickle band members, club owners, heavy-drinking friends who like to go to shows, etc. Well, frankly I'm not much of a salesman: I really can't bring myself to schmooze with people I don't like (at least not more than once or twice); I'm not capable of making friends solely for the purpose of getting them to do something for me, and I'm not the kind of party guy that has lots of such friends already. I don't tend to hang out in bars as a leisure-time activity, and I tend to get more out of listening to recordings than I do by seeing gigs (with the inability to listen repeatedly in a single sitting, the excessive noise, the cigarette smoke hurting my eyes, and all the fricking standing around as the band inevitably starts 45 min later that it's supposed to). This makes it highly improbable that however talented I may be that you'd have already heard my music on the radio or wherever.

I ask, then, that even though it may be true that statistically, the chances of your neighbor's band sucking are very high, you approach me and my work with an open mind, understanding that anything unfamiliar usually takes repeated exposure to really appreciate, and while I may not be your cup of tea, I've proven myself on more than one occasions to be someone's. I am tea, dammit. Just imagine what you'd think if with no prior introductions or reputations getting in the way, you stumbled across a song on the web (recorded with a shoestring budget) by Bob Dylan, Lou Reed, Ric Ocasek, Joni Mitchell, or Dave Matthews; these are all individuals whose personas really annoy a lot of people, especially on first listen. While I understand that you, unlike me, have no obligation under the directives of self-esteem to entertain the possibility that what you'll find on these sites is of this caliber, I sincerely hope that you've got a bit of time to kill. Enjoy your visit.

Related Topic: Why you should give me money

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