Music Takes Hard Work

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Is there such a thing as too much music? This is a question I have been asked a lot as of late. Well, in my humble opinion, (and if I answer truthfully) I’d say no; not if you love music as much as I do. Do I take a break from playing and singing? Sure, I do, but I always come back to it. It captured my love as a child and life would be much harder to deal with if there was no music in it.

But no matter what anyone has said, playing music isn’t easy if they claimed it as being, but hey, name one thing that you love, and found easy to do? Anything come to mind?? You have to work on anything you do to be the best at it. Whether it’s a job or car racing or playing baseball, you have to work at it to perfect your craft, regardless what’s been chosen. Music, my friends, is the same way. If you’re going to be the best you can be, you have to work on your set list to get the songs down pat, and the band must be in sync before doing a show.

It's the same thing with songwriting. Our lyrics have to be perfect, to sync with your music. I call the lyrics I write a first draft to the original, then I go back through them and rearrange them to fit the music I’m playing. Sometimes, this takes work, and most times, you’ll work at it for a good while.

Try taking a mediocre song and turning it into a masterpiece. It won’t happen overnight, that I will guarantee. Expect to invest your time and a lot of patience and maybe you’ll suffer a headache spent thinking on exactly what you want to say, and exactly how you want to say it. I've heard musicians say they’ve written a song in just a few minutes; yes, it can happen, but it wasn’t that super hit it might appear to the public. They polished that baby; and truly, don’t be naïve to believe it was born in a jiffy and covered in platinum without a ton of effort. I’m more willing to believe the guy who says it took years to finish that hit song. I don’t wear rose-colored glasses and don’t use sugar cubes without checking out their square-shapes. I tend to keep my feet grounded too. After years in the business I know nothing is perfect without help along the way. And there is no such thing as an overnight success. Garth Brooks’ song Thunder Rolls is a good example. He worked on that song on his bus several times for over a year before he finally felt satisfied it was finished, and it is one of my favorite songs of his.

So I conclude there is no such thing as there being too much music, not if you’re willing to put the work into it and make it be the song only your musician’s sense can envision. But yes, you’ll get exhausted, maybe frustrated, but eventually you’ll have a song that could be golden. And that is what makes being an artist worthwhile, and why I wouldn’t have it any other way.

-JD Couch - MU Columnist
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