The Struggles of Being a Songwriter

(Quick apology for my last post: yeah it was true, and I needed to write it, but I didn’t have to be that dramatic – and that leads me into what this post it about!)

Ah, songwriting. One of my favorite things. But I have to admit, being a songwriter is one of the hardest things to be in terms of a personal life. Because as a great songwriter, you either are or you have to be a certain number of these things (give or take a few, depending on the person) –

  • Dramatic
  • Lyrical
  • Sensitive
  • Detailed
  • Thoughtful
  • Empathetic
  • Passionate
  • A tiny bit crazy

It can be so hard for non-songwriters to understand how these traits affect the personal lives of songwriters. Here’s the thing: as a person, I can be a little bit dramatic and sensitive and crazy. If I’m having an issue with one of my friends, I can take the tiniest conflict and unintentionally spin it out of control because I can’t stop thinking about where it could lead. What if we’re not friends anymore? What if they think I’m too dramatic? etc, etc. Yes, these things are a product of my personality, but they are also just as much a product of the songwriter part of me. And let me tell you, the songwriter part of me is all of me. There isn’t a line. I feel through lyrics and melody (and violins can always bring on the waterworks) so sometimes I can be dramatic and sensitive. How do I let that frolic in my songwriting, but reel it in throughout my personal life? My hope is that one day the people in my life will be able to see, through their experiences with me, how it affects my relationship with them and how they can apply that knowledge to our relationship. For example: sensitivity. I am sensitive. But I’m not ashamed to admit that, because to me, being sensitive means that you can see and feel things that some others can’t. Maybe I can see on my best friend’s face how a remark affected her, and none of my other friends can. Maybe I get something out of a piece of art or a societal event that no one else can. Both of those things have happened on occasion in my life. It’s because the thing that I put my energy into is the craft of dramatizing situations while at the same time telling the truth. Enlarging them or pushing them under the rug through lyrics, ┬ácharacterizing a feeling with chords, or exclaiming a simple truth that I feel is necessary. If my art is directly molded by my feelings, than my feelings are going to be molded by my art. That’s just the way of the world.

Or, perhaps, that’s just the way of the songwriters. ­čśë

 

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