It's a Work of Art...
Recently I had the stupidest realization. Like, one of those ideas that hits you so clearly and makes you feel so brilliant, but then you reflect and think, "Well, duh. No shit." It's weird to continue to see people subscribing to my YouTube channel, and becoming a fan on Facebook and SoundCloud. After all, it's been years since I created something new. How could all of you still be finding me?
But then I realized, every piece of music, every video I've created is a permanent piece of the Internet, kind of like a work of art in a museum. Stay with me, I'm about to go on a tangent...
I've been pretty indoctrinated into the SnapChat/social media feed culture. When it comes to content, it feels like there's no permanence to things we create. The art is shared, consumed by others, and we all move on. The art is forgotten in the never-ending feed of content because we're all looking for our fix of the newest, latest, coolest thing. The music industry has realized this, too. You find more and more artists are choosing to release EPs and singles rather than albums in order to keep popping up on your feed more often. To stay relevant. Remember concept albums? Remember albums in general? When was the last time you listened to one of those instead of a playlist?
I can't knock musicians for ditching albums; I've done it myself. It's much easier to record a song and put it out there than an entire full-length album. And when you're fighting to get noticed among all of the other content online, you have a better chance to get noticed when you're sharing your work more frequently.
At least for me, being in this creative culture, it's hard to remember that people will continue to find my work, long after it's been posted and shared. It's both encouraging and terrifying. On one hand, it's motivation to create. I used to get so down on myself when I would hit a creative block and slow down on creating content. But realizing that every song I've ever made will remain published online for others discover even after the initial release sort of takes the pressure off. I can sit back and relax knowing that I'm still sharing my craft even if I'm not actively creating it at the moment.
On the other hand, realizing the permanency of my content puts a lot of pressure on me to make something "perfect." If it's going to be out there forever for the whole world to find, I should probably be putting more effort into the finished product so that I feel proud of my creation, not just "eh, it's good enough." But I'm trying to not think about that too hard. It's hard enough coming back to making music after a few years off. I'll worry about polishing things once I have some songs written.