Season 2 Episode 5 So I don't know about you, but I'm a pretty weird dude. And that weirdness definitely shows up in my songwriting. Whether its in the thematic content of my pieces (for some reason a lot of my songs tend to have this feeling of being an "outsider" someone looking for a sense of home), or in the compositional techniques I use (I'm into a lot of weird music, and even some of the more avant garde influences slip into my writing from time to time) my personal weirdness gets reflected in my work. Do you have things like that for you? That's what we're talking about in this episode of the Honest Songwriter. I've recently been doing a fair amount of prep work for starting a bigger marketing push behind my solo singer/songwriter stuff and that's been bringing up a lot of questions about identity. It started out as shoring up some of the branding ideas, but because my solo work is so personal in nature, this quickly started getting me to ask the big questions about who am I as an artist, and why I'm making art in the first place. These can be intimidating questions to deal with, but they are so important for focusing your work, and I'm glad I've been working through them. One idea that kept coming back up is that, when you look at artists you respect, they all have something that makes them unique. Their individual voice (not just singing voice, but artistic voice) is evident throughout their body of work and they are somehow able to hold true to making the types of artistic statements that they want to make. This is inspiring, for sure, but tends to be pushed to the backburner when you're worrying about things like marketing and how you're going to make a sustainable income off of your music (especially if you're someone like me who's kind of a weirding making kind of weird music). It's easy to forget those things that make you unique as an artist when you're focused on how you're going to pay the bills. And that is absolutely a legitimate concern! We talk a lot about sustainability here on the podcast, and we totally get the necessity of dealing with the day to day of life while carving out some space for you to create your art. It's in moments like these where taking a second to remember why you're making art in the first place to help you refocus on doing what you need to do so that you are able to sustainability keep making your art. That's what this episode is all about: remembering that (even when other worries are on your mind) the most important thing about making art is being able to be fulfilled by the work your doing. That you are having honest, human experiences with your pieces. If you're able to do that, you will always be able to find someone else who connects with that experience, and the other stuff will start to sort itself out. So be honest with yourself, and don't shy away from those things that make you weirdly and uniquely you. That's the strength of your artistic voice right there. Your weirdness = your magic. They're the same thing. The Honest Songwriter Podcast is 15-20 minutes of regular, open conversation about songwriting, what it's like to be a songwriter, and how to keep improving at the craft of songwriting. New episodes every three weeks!