Key Four of "Ignore Everybody and 39 Other Keys to Creativity" by Hugh Macleod

Key Four:  "Good ideas have lonely childhoods.  This is the price you pay, every time.  There is no way of avoiding it."  ~ Hugh Macleod ~

One childhood summer at Y Camp, we repeatedly sang an old traditional spiritual around the camp fire, "Jesus Walked That Lonesome Valley."  As the embers glowed, I often got chills as we got to "You got to walk that lonesome valley - You got to walk it for yourself cause nobody else can walk it for you, you got to walk it by yourself." Here's Mississippi John Hurt's version of "You Got Walk That Lonesome Valley."

Basically the message continues to be - get down to it.  Do the work, don't parade it around before it's time. Protect your muse personally and professionally.  This also reminds me of Joni Mitchell's lyric in "A Case of You":  "I am a lonely painter, I live in a box of paints",  that her seemingly glamorous life is at the expense of many lonely hours.

Musicians in particular need to be careful with whom they share their business ideas.  We want to be rescued from the responsibilities that are included in the job-description of "artist."  We are sometimes lulled into the delusion that the details are being taken care of, and therefore fail to pay attention to important day to day details.
It's what you've learned in the dark, one day you may share in the light  - if you've truly done the work required.

Your thoughts on being a lonely artist?

Pam Mark Hall

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