I read the Times of India every day. I also go through the Indian Express, the Economic Times, the Mid Day and the Mumbai Mirror everyday (yes I spend 1 hour leisurely reading newspapers every morning!) but I have to read the TOI every day. Its the first paper that I pick up from the fat bunch of newspapers that arrive at my doorstep every morning. Why? Because its an old habit. Because I was reading it from the time I gained consciousness about the world I live in and since the time that I actively began reading newspapers as a kid. Not that I am an old-habits-die-hard kinda guy. I am quick to discard habits, professions and ideas (even some people!) that no longer work for me and which / who do not engage me as much as they used to. I actually would have abandoned this paper long back if it hadn’t been engaging enough. Clearly the credit goes to the management of the institution who have not only soldiered on but have dominated the newspaper business despite new papers that were launched with much fanfare but have withered away like so much papier mache. One of my favourite section is the ‘Speaking Tree’ section which adds some much needed juice and enthusiasm for the day and also some good fodder for thought. A recent piece written by Vir Singh caught my attention. Titled ‘You are a Unique Piece of Work’. (Read the whole article here)
In the context of this blog and the audience that visits us, this article was highly pertinent. If you are a budding or even an experienced music composer, music producer or artist it pays to stop and reflect on this sentence. In fact I would urge you to say it aloud, ‘I AM A UNIQUE PIECE OF WORK’. Feels good, doesn’t it?!! Think about it, we all human beings are all alike in terms of what constitutes our organs, flesh and blood. We are also alike in terms of our thoughts and feelings. But and here’s the big difference. We may be alike inside out but we are different culturally, linguistically, structurally and in a lot of other ways.
You are Different
There is one unique way that humans have evolved from all other life forms on this planet. Every individual on the planet has a deep rooted and distinctive trait and intellectual capacity. Every individual in this world has a trait that no else ever had or ever will have! This is a life changing idea if you can grasp it. Think deeply.
You are a unique piece of work that the universe has created and in this distinctive attribute of yours lies the distinctive flour and genius of the universe!
And I quote Vir Singh, “Many people will be like you, will think alike, will do as you do but you have in your mind a distinctive seed of thought, distinctive ability and something remarkably different from all the human beings of the planet put together. It is your job to identify and recognize this uniqueness within you. You need to develop this uniqueness which may be dormant within you and articulate this”. And if you succeed, then this will become your original contribution to the world and will become a part of the continuous evolution of mankind.
Chase Long Term Over Short Term Goals
If you are an upcoming music creator or even an experienced musician, it is time you reflected on what you are setting out to do or what you are currently doing and created the music that you have always wanted to create. Rather than pandering to what the market wants or what you think will work for the audience, create what inspires you and makes you feel happy. You are a product of your culture and all the music that you have heard and experienced in your life so far. It is a waste of your considerable talents and efforts to create something that the world will forget in a flash. Big Idea: What you can create is what no one else in this world can create except for you! What others have not done so far, what others could not dare do so far, you can do it.
The world is poorer without your art and the world will be richer once you start giving us your unique gift.
A specific thing that you might be able to do would be beyond impossible for someone else who attempted to do the same! If you are starting out, remember whatever you want to learn can be learned in a few years (if you willing to sweat it and do time!) by attending classes in a university, by working under a mentor, through books and of course through the word wide web. It is easier than ever to learn a new craft or skill in today’s world than ever before in the history of mankind. Your common intellect will enable you to learn everything you want to learn. But it is your uniqueness that will help you to apply what you have learnt to create, invent and unfold something that is different and unique from that of others or from that which is already out there. This unique attribute can also help you reinvent yourself. You may be a doctor or an engineer who always wanted to create music. Unless you are really old and we are talking 80 + toothless geriatrics here (we’ll all get there someday don’t worry!), it is never too late to learn. You could learn music for the next 5 years and become proficient enough to create something unique that the world will value and you will be happy to be doing what you have always wanted to do.
Will Anyone Ever Create Back Up Copies of Your Music?
Talking about legacy, everyone needs a higher purpose in life – something that is higher than one’s own self. Be it in business or in the world of creativity the goal of every thinking, intelligent and creative person is to leave something behind that others will cherish long after they have gone and something that will have contributed in a real and positive way to the lives of others. The next time you sit down to create music think about what your higher purpose – is what I am creating just short term or will it pass the test of time?!! If the latter is your choice then I must congratulate you because you have discovered your uniqueness. I will get to hear something from you in the future that is fresh, unique and radically different from the crowd-pleasing junk that has a temporary lifespan. I will download your music and search for it online. Your music will touch my heart. Which is why I will cherish your music and create a special folder of your music in my computer / heart and create backup copies of the same! Because you are a special person and you have created music that is equally special. And for this I thank you as I thank every other artist in the world!