Here I am writing my first blog entry of 2016. I always hesitate to write anything because I often end up not completing the post or deciding in the end it isn’t worth publishing.
I confess, I am a fearful person. For as long as I can remember, I was always the smallest, and always scared. I guess that’s how I became the loudest. I needed and wanted to be heard. For all my bluster though, I was often terrified.
I think my loudness was to mask the terror I felt inside. My fear affected everything from doubting my abilities as a musician and artist, to not doing well in school, failing in sports and building copious amounts of social anxiety during my teenage years (and parts of my adult years too). Fear can stop you from living big parts of your life.
Fear doesn’t completely prevent me from performing and making music (thank goodness!) but it does dominate aspects of my career. To give you an example, it takes me forever to compose works. I am so terrified that the pieces I write will be so awful that I would never perform them in public. So why bother writing them? That’s a terrible way to live.
Ironically, I constantly preach to my voice and piano students to let go of their fear in order to be free to improvise without inhibition and to produce a beautiful relaxed sound and be creative.
As 2016 was approaching, I decided that this year, I would be fearless. Realistically I just want to fear less. I don’t want my fear to overcome my desire to do something that will enrich my life. Writing a blog post is a good example of something I’d like to be able to do without fear driving me to the brink of giving up.
My first “fear-less” act of 2016 is posting my very first video on Youtube. I am improvising on the piano. This is huge for me. I was on a 15 year hiatus from the piano. Just over 4 years ago I started studying and practicing the piano seriously again. I have finally come to terms with my classical training and my jazz improvising. I am now starting to find a balance with both. I love playing the piano. I love improvising. I realize that I don’t need to play in either a so called jazz or classical style. I just want to play music. I want to spontaneously create. I want to express myself in the most honest way that I can. I feel like now after so many years, I have found my voice
As this particular blog entry has taken almost one week to write, I have posted another video of myself improvising on toy piano. Over this year, I plan to post a video every week. I will do lots of improvising on the piano and voice. I will be doing some interviews with some incredible artists and I will sing a lot.
I hope that you will follow me on my journey to “fear-less” this year. I don’t know what I will discover about myself but I am genuinely excited to find out.