Photo and Interview by Steve Korn
Someone once told me that “there’s no money in music!” That’s it. No follow-up to this “heaviness.” What a dumb-ass.
If I could do it all over again, I’d be more fearless in pursuing whatever I wanted. The first reason is that I’ve finally learned that the things I fear about myself…my insecurities…the things that I’ve spent time on in the past, worrying about what people think of what I musically put out, or how I play and sound…none of it matters because people aren’t concerned about me. They are primarily and pretty much always concerned about themselves.
The second is because I’d know that it’s all going to be alright in the end.
Practice is one of the most important ingredients that makes the difference – between a great musician and a mediocre one, a winner and a loser, a person who knows himself/herself or not, a successful person and a failure. It’s not just mindless practice by rote though. I feel like I have to put a lot into the why of what is being practiced and really believe that it’s all about putting in the thousands of hours of focused thought and action on developing my skills and ideas to get to my musical ideals. That alone has been a huge factor in learning about myself. A nice “side effect” of it is becoming a better musician with a constantly growing awareness everyday.
When I look at where I’m at right now, I am surprised that I’m here and could have never guessed that I’d get here. But when I trace the steps, it all makes perfect sense. And it’s fucking crazy. I bet it’s like that for most people.
Some of my best ideas come to me when I’m happy, at ease, and inspired by something that has recently had a deep impact on me. On the flip side, I rarely do my best stuff when I’m stressed. I may be more productive when I’m stressed. I just don’t think that the product is as good.
Fear is something that needs to be constantly managed and kept out of the way. Sometimes they are little thoughts that seem insignificant but can all come together and be debilitating if they aren’t addressed. They need to be smacked away like pesky little mosquitoes.
Motivation is what it’s all about…isn’t it?
In the big scheme of things, what really matters is taking action.
People ask me “what’s it like playing with Pat Metheny?” or “What’s Pat Metheny like?” I really wish they’d stop.