My experience with music and performance is probably not unique.  Like a lot of people starting a craft or sport, learning to play an instrument or act, I just didn’t have a lot of confidence or even history to know how I was doing.  I mean, at this point I am not even asking ‘when will I be good enough to …).  Still fairly young at this point, I really like playing drums and percussion.  I tapped out rhythms everywhere I went.  We got a small organ for Christmas one year and I was drawn to it for months.  Harmonicas, a cheap guitar lead up to recording gear.

As I played instruments and fiddled around with lyrics or microphones and power amps over the years, I realized two things pretty quickly; 1) I knew and understood things a lot of people will never understand and 2) I knew a lot of really good players/musicians/artists, and they were much better than me.  I rationalized that I considered myself to be a songwriter (not even singer/songwriter early on) and that was good enough for me.

Today, I encourage each of you to think not just about the target or the goals in your musical performing careers, but to think about how you will continue to improve your craft.  Writing songs, performing someone else’s or running sound and making everyone sound great – each takes practice and effort.  But eventually it takes confidence.  Can you really do it.  What if you totally screw things up? What if they don’t applaud (or laugh or cheer)?

I spent quite a long time before I realized I had everyone else’s confidence BUT mine!  Knowing what I do now, I would have accepted a few more challenges.  I might have encouraged more projects.  I could have inspired someone else.  So now, let me inspire you.  Don’t wait until everyone in the universe thinks you are “good enough” to get out there and jump in.  At my job I tell trainees that I know as much as I do because I have made every mistake possible.  Do what you love.  Put your heart into it.  What if you screw things up?  You learn from it and the next time you do better.  Do it a bunch, and you will be great.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

  1. Mike, very well said. We have to not care and just put the work out there!

    Liked by 1 person

    • midimike says:

      Thank you. Rather than draw back from criticism we should pull in and identify each concern your audience has. After all, if you can solve them, everyone will be happy.


  2. Tom Robinson says:

    I like knowlege. You got it. I want it.

    Thanks, Mike.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Zak Buccitelli says:

    So important to remember Mike! I can totally identify with the lack of confidence. It’s so strange how we can believe certain things for and about others, but neglect to make it real for ourselves. That’s probably why we’re musicians, it helps us make sense of our nonsensical craziness :P.

    Liked by 1 person

    • midimike says:

      I like your point of view. As musicians and frankly, artists in general, we have the ability to perceive the connection to ideas that are not easily connected. The cliché’s are common when regarding color, sound, emotion, but as you mention Zak, in many ways this also gives us clarity others do not have. We put these things together and make sense of the world around us.


  4. jennycoder says:

    Thanks so much for your words of encouragement Mike, this is exactly what I need to read right now (I’ve been putting off picking up my guitar because I am soooo bad at it), looks like I will be playing tonight!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • midimike says:

      The funny thing, Jenny, is that your words were exactly what I needed to read right now also.  Try tuning up your guitar and playing for about 15 minutes each night.  It doesn’t have to be a lot of time, just do it whenever you get 15 minutes but at least 15 minutes a day.  Thanks a lot for the comment and taking your time to reach out. Now pick up your guitar, tune it and have a blast! 


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