It’s been 5 years since I first picked up a guitar and started writing my own music. It’s actually kind of incredible how much perspective you can gain in such a short amount of time. I still remember writing my first few songs while still in high school- spending every class writing down terrible lyrics and tapping my pencil on every desk. Even after school, I spent countless hours in my bedroom churning out ideas. Every single one of those songs ended up being awful, but I don’t regret a second of it.
I’ve grown quite a bit since then. In terms of music, I’ve learned all kinds of things from chord progressions, scales, picking patterns, and even the ability to create unique melodies. But aside from my new knowledge and technical abilities, I now understand the difference between wanting to write a hit song vs needing to write because you just have to.
Wanting to write a hit song is all about writing music for the reward. Fame, sex, money or whatever it is, these people simply want to use music as a tool to fulfill their own personal desires. Being in multiple bands and playing with hundreds of people, I realize now there’s many musicians of this kind. And to be quite frank, I was one of them for a while. Ironically, it wasn’t until after I stopped giving a shit about “making it” did I realize that I was in love with the art of songwriting and sharing my music with the world. I plan on creating music until the day I die.
I think to be successful at anything in life you truly have to be passionate about it. The second you start doing something strictly for its rewards, you are doomed to fail. So to all my fellow songwriters out there: Never stop creating, stay authentic and do it because it’s what you love.