A doubt arises in the best of us whether we are worthy, or any good to play like the ones we love to listen. It often seems like everyone and their mothers are playing Blues guitar. It is true, the list of decent guitarists is huge, list of great guitarists is large and phenomenal guitarists is long. Is there a way to get a corner in their room?
The short answer would be yes, but with some thick gauged strings attached. You will have to work hard, have courage and create artificial luck. One has to work through vicious perils to end up in the proper place in the proper time. This place and time might only come once during a lifetime but it doesn’t end there. It has to be recognized as an opportunity and grabbed by the horns or start the cycle over until the second time comes. Imagine how much apprehension a person would have if they will see someone they dream of meeting. Imagine how much stutter that person will have when talking to their influencer. Imagine how easy it would be to let that opportunity slip away.
It is the same as any other profession. There are millions of specialist in each respective field and all that it takes to become extraordinary is to make an extra step, work an extra hour and ask an extra question among things like being moral and ethical. Just being good will get you further in life than you would ever expect to get.
So back to our three pillars of Blues achievement:
Blues guitarists are no exception, spending an extra hour practicing, learning a new scale, listening to licks and riffs instead of doing whatever else is on agenda, will get you an hour closer to your dream. Of course if it really is your dream. If you know in your heart that it is what you wanna be and what you wanna do, you will do everything for it. You will spend 10,000 hours on it and then 10k more just to make sure. You will overcome the hardest perils for it and you will not likely need this, because you will already work 25 hours a day towards your dream. Finding preference towards anything else might only make it a hobby, which is not a bad thing either. In time a hobby may develop into a great passion.
Public opinion and social norms are dictating what we should or should not be doing. It is a beautiful thing, because it makes the decisions we want to make so much harder if they are going against the comfort zone of our society. It makes us so much stronger if we follow those decisions and so much more resilient when we trip and fall on our first try. The attempt which will only piss us off and force us to make a second attempt being even more persistent. That first try requires the greatest amount of courage to achieve. Is it worth it? Every damn second of it. I haven’t seen Blues musicians drop their fields to go be an accountant but I have seen it other way around. If you need a glass of Jack, Jim or Johnny – go ahead. Whatever it takes to make that first step as long as it’s not heroin or crack. You will love it, remember it for the rest of your life and be glad you did it.
In the past I have preached about everyone’s ability to call upon their luck artificially. I am a strong believer that both muse and luck can be gathered if called upon loud and enough times. The scheme is simple: If you work hard to achieve your goals, you must be going towards the crossroads where everyone you admire cross paths with things you want to do. If you are working hard towards getting into one of those doors, you will run into those doors on the way. If you have courage to drop everything to achieve your goal and persistence to follow it until the end, you will run into the doors you want to go through. If you work hard towards achieving your goal, the concept of luck will become flexible and one day, one person that you would not give enough credit to, would offer you an introduction with your favorite Blues Guitarist, music producer or just a guy who knows a guy. This is my concept of artificial luck and it is working on every single one of those who work hard at achieving their goals and dreams.
You are Unique
In a way. Remember this. You are unique but not entitled. You are an individual in a society, which means that you hurt the same, you want similar things but you have an advantage of being you while others are trying to be someone else. No one cares about you when it comes to their own comfort, no one will give you a custom ES-335 and a place at Eric’s Crossroads Festival unless you work hard at it, defeat your fears and create your own luck.
“Today you are you, it is truer than true. There is no one alive that is youer than you” – Dr. Seuss
Special thanks to Earl Klatzel for great Blues Art.