Times Like These..

… It’s times like these you learn to live again
It’s times like these you give and give again
It’s times like these you learn to love again
It’s times like these time and time again

Foo Fighters – Times Like These

Music brings all of us together. It does not matter the genre you listen to or who your favorite artist may be. It is the one language we can all speak – together. It is one of the few things that ties us together regardless of gender, race, or sexual preference. 

This week watching the performances from the Taylor Hawkins Tribute, I was reminded of this fact again. I laughed, cried, danced and sang along. It was heartbreaking and joyful at the same time. Then again many of the best moments of my life have those same elements. 

When I worked at the agency I would go to see multiple shows weekly, sometimes nightly. Sometimes they felt like work, most times I just felt lucky I was able to get into the show. A few years into working at the agency I was lucky enough to sit next to the agent that repped the Foo Fighters. And even luckier that he would invite me to shows. I was able to see them at arenas as well as theaters. I have two favorite memories of Taylor.  The first occurred one winter break when I could not afford to go anywhere and my family was not around. I was feeling alone and depressed. I received a text from the agent. 

“Hey, you in town?” It read. 

I thought he was going to ask me to go into the office and get something for him. I was hesitant to answer. Plus, I was feeling like a total loser being alone during the holidays and having no plans. Still.

“Yes, what’s up?” I answered. 

“Steel Pony, three hours in the valley. Your name is on the list. See you there.” He replied. 

I didn’t know what the Steel Pony was, let alone where it was located. But the agent repped some of my favorite folks – Pearl Jam, Beastie Boys, and Maxwell in addition to the Foo Fighters. So even though it was raining and I was flying solo, I headed to the Steel Pony. When I arrived the line was out of the parking lot and down and around two blocks. It was not a big club. I walked past the line and into the parking lot. I saw the agent. He was talking to the Fire Chief. He saw me. Grabbed my arm and pushed me inside while listening to the fireman tell them they were at capacity. 

The place was packed. I had been pushed through a side door directly next to the stage. I had been pushed into someone when I came through the door. It was Taylor Hawkins. He smiled. I apologized. He tipped his glass and walked on to the stage. It was then I saw Dave Grohl and realized I was at a Foo Fighters show. For three hours they played a bit of everything. I danced, laughed, and sweat the night away. I no longer felt depressed or alone. I was with my music family and we were all rejoicing. It is still one of my favorite memories. 

The second occurred a few years later. I was invited to a friends and family show at the Forum. I didn’t feel like going. I was tired. I had been traveling. I was feeling burned out. I will be honest and tell you I don’t even remember who I was seeing. But I remember thinking, someone else would be so excited about this show. Go, you never know what can happen.  I arrived at the forum. Checked in, grabbed a drink and headed to my seat. In front of me were a bunch of guys that were having the time of their lives. I was sitting with other agents and we were all on our phones not paying attention to anything but work. But I remember thinking I wish I was part of the group in front of us. It was then I recognized Taylor Hawkins in that row. I remember watching him and his friends more than the show because they were so into it. They were having the best time. Here was a guy who had toured all over the world and tonight he was just a fan like everyone else in the place. It reminded me of the power of music.  

Working in the music business can be tough. You can be surrounded by the darkest parts of humanity, but you are also surrounded by such unimaginable light. Every time I have thought of doing something else, someone sends me a song. Sometimes the song is by artists I know. Many times it is by someone I have never heard of before. The one thing they have in common is that they always remind me why I love this business. They lift my mood and my spirit like nothing else does.

If you are having a bad day, put on that album that brings back that memory. I have sat on a couch and listened to an entire album and ended up in conversations with total strangers about the music. I have woken up crying, put on an album and had a private dance party. I have sat in a parked car staring at nothing listening to a voice note that an artist has sent me. The one thing that all of these moments have in common is the music. I hope that today you take a moment and listen to your sound, whatever flavor that may be. I hope that it brings a smile to your face and makes your soul soar. We all need that now more than ever. 

***Side note: I have seen some of the negative comments about the benefit. I haven’t read much of them because the second I see that they are criticizing such an amazing moment, I want to throw something. We have become a society that can find fault in everything, including an event that brought generations and genres  together to celebrate a life that touched so many. It is heartbreaking. So I refuse. I refuse to fall into the trap about what was wrong with the show and rejoice in what was so right about it. I hope you are dancing and laughing above Taylor, because you made all of us remember what was right in this world. 

Fear…

Change is hard. Actually now that I think about it  – FEAR is harder. Fear of Change. Fear of the unknown. Fear of the known. Fear of abandonment. Fear is debilitating for me. Fear makes me spin out of control and stops me in my tracks all at the same time. 

I have wanted to move out of my apartment for over 5 years. And yet, I have not moved. What is stopping me? Fear. I fear rejection. I fear there is nothing I can afford that I will like. I fear that I won’t get the house. I fear that I will pick the wrong neighborhood. I fear that I will pick the wrong building. I fear that I will get it and not be able to afford it. In the end that fear has kept me in an apartment I do not like and have outgrown.

I need a new car. Everyone has said now is not the time to buy. I should have bought during the pandemic. But the fear of not having a job stopped me. The fear of not being approved for the loan stopped me. The fear of choosing the wrong make, wrong car, wrong seller. In the end that fear has kept me using Uber and Lyft and watching my savings dwindle.

I don’t love my job. I am so thankful for it. It pays well. I work remotely. There are so many things to love about it. Unfortunately, I don’t like the actual job or my boss as a boss. But I fear losing it through something I did. Or something I did not do. I fear the company not being able to afford me. I fear being rejected. I fear being told I am too old, too fat, or too experienced to get the position I want. I fear not being able to find a job that pays me what I am already making and more.  In the end, I may stay too long at my current job and then be forced out instead of choosing to leave. This has happened before.

I want a community. My biggest fear is being alone. This is a fear that I find stranger than most as I didn’t have it until I became an adult. When I was a kid it was my monther’s biggest fear. So much so that she stayed in relationships that never should have started and she married men that she was not happy to be with.

As a kid I could not understand her fear of being alone. I wanted to have my own house. To live alone. To not have anyone care if I ate after 8 pm or slept until noon. As an adult, I wish there was someone who cared. Someone who wanted to know that I made it home ok. That I am eating correctly. Someone to talk to about the bad and the good days. Someone to celebrate and someone to grieve with me. Someone to encourage, challenge and love me. I fear that I will never find that someone and yet, am I really looking? 

I fear that fear is going to stop me from living the life I crave and deserve. It already has. The question now is, how do I stop fear?

Website Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑