I adopted that tagline as my personal motto a few months ago when I was feeling very discouraged about getting my freelancing business off the ground. I had given up trying to survive on what I was making from selling articles to magazines and began managing a very talented musician. We were both broke, and at our first business meeting looked in each other’s eyes and said simultaneously “I’m tired of being poor.” I didn’t know how a starving writer was going to help a starving musician do anything but starve a little longer, but we popped a bottle of champagne and set off on a new path together.
As I have gotten to know this amazing individual, he has become the epitome of the “Let the beauty” quote to me. He has been slogging away at making a living as a musician for more than a decade, living out of a suitcase and barely suriving most of the time. Yet despite the trials and tribulations and a desire for what he does to be more financially rewarding, he’s never far from the belief that if we are living our passion and telling the truth as we see it, we have everything we need. He has the keen ability to turn nearly every event in his life into a touching and deeply personal, yet universally meaningful song. This uncanny gift and his 1000+ songs have never translated into anything other than minor notariety in a small circle of music lovers. “How could this be?” I thought the first time I heard his music. It’s poetic and entertaining and moving. I have been perplexed by his lack of commercial success, but have developed a strong admiration for his ability to perservere.
A few nights ago I attended a concert by my dear friend and business partner. He was flushed and nervous despite having spent thousands of nights just like that doing the exact same thing. I have seen him prepare and perform enough to know how much of his heart he pours into every show, and yet again, he blew my mind with the innovative and touching material he pulled out of his box of tricks. Each of his songs are moments when he finds yet another way to kneel and kiss the earth, and each time he sings them he is weaving those moments together to create them anew for us. After the appreciative audience had departed and we were closing up the event, I heard him telling someone “It’s nights like these that remind me why I do what I do”.
Me too, my friend, me too.