Happy Birthday

It’s my birthday today. Currently I’m sitting at the gate at LAX waiting to board a return flight home to Seattle. I have been staying with David Ruis and family up in Tajunga which is up in the foothills at the east end of San Fernando valley. It is north of Glendale but is technically part of LA which sprawls everywhere. Perhaps you can tell I am into geography. I always like to know where I am.

I spent three days attending the annual ASCAP Expo. This was my first time. All I can say is WOW! I am so glad I went. Spending three days learning about the ins and outs of the music business felt like I was drinking from a fire hose, but I learned so much. I have a lot to process.

For those of you who are just tuning in to my  saga, I am embarking on a full-time music career. I have been wanting to do this for a couple of years now. I was so emotionally done with my previous occupation. But I waited to make a change. Then I truly believe God forced my hand (pun intended) by giving me this nerve condition called Ulnar Neuritus. I simply could not continue to spend 9 to 10 hours a day on the computer. I had no choice to make a change.

And now I have.

It is interesting to think that God gave me this infliction, but I believe he did, and I thank him for it. It didn’t occur to me for a long time to thank him, but I do. I am not happy that I have this condition, but I can manage it. I just can’t spend a lot of time typing on the computer. Even while I type this, I need to take some pauses. I need to get off my rear end and get the Dragon Speak Naturally software so I can take advantage of speech recognition technology.

But back to the Expo. I have a lot to process and will write about the high points and low points in an upcoming post. But here are a few choice nuggets of wisdom I have gained from listening to the likes of John Mayer, Quincy Jones, Ludacris, Bill Withers, Justin Timberlake, Linda Perry and others. These are all in my own words, but I heard the same sorts of ideas over and over.

  • Don’t waste a single second seeking validation from external sources
  • Be true to yourself
  • Write out of your own heart and experiences
  • Your creativity comes from above; you are simply a conduit
  • Write, write, write, and keep on writing.
  • Great songs are those that people can connect to at a heart level
  • Creating music is for the service of others
  • Think of your fans as friends, not customers
  • There is no substitute for hard work
  • Do what you love and love doing it
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