I have been reading a book by Bruce Springsteen, Born to Run. It is a big book over seven hundred pages. I am about 250 pages into it and Bruce is still struggling to make it in the music business. He has played in three or four bands had some success, especially in his hometown in New Jersey. He was went to California twice and failed to make it big there so he returned to New Jersey. After returning to New Jersey he played with his band at a bar. The place was packed and the crowd loved the music. He was hoping to get a regular gig at the bar, instead he was fired.
The reason he was fired was because people were listening to the music instead of drinking beer. Selling drinks was what the bar needed to make money. They were in the bar business not the concert business. Bruce decided that his bar band days were burning out. It was time to try something new.
He needed to be able to get attention by one of three methods. His voice, his guitar, or his songs. He could sing. He didn't feel he was the best singer but he could get by. His guitar playing was okay but there were better guitar players. He needed to focus on something that could change the game. The songs would have to be the fireworks. He wanted to be a songwriter that had his own voice, their own story to tell, who could draw you in and make you want to listen to their songs.
This is what all songwriters want to do. To tell their story and hope that others can relate to it. To feel what the songwriter is feeling. It might be sadness, happiness, joy, or any number of feelings. I remember when I had my Bruce moment. I was playing music at the coffee shop and it was fun. The coffee shop decided that they wanted to go the band route to draw bigger crowds. Remember, they are in the coffee selling business not the music business. So I decided it was time for a change.
I decided to focus on songwriting. I joined NSAI. Nashville Songwriting Association International and started working on the craft of writing songs. It was ten years ago that I made this decision. So today I call myself a songwriter. I wasn't born to run like Bruce, hopefully I was born to write.
Here is a song to listen to- Bobby McGee.