Disclaimer: So... I wrote this one a long ago. I must have skipped it somehow, possibly because Horizon came out. Oops! Here you go.
There is something special about watching a show like the Grammys in Nashville. It’s always fun and inspiring (inspiration boosts like this are super important to find time for, especially if you’re working a day job) but being here, in the thick of it all, made it not only more real, but more within reach. Most if not all of the people there tonight, dawning their glamorous gowns and delivering show-stopping performances, had once been normal people, living normal lives all the while making the little sacrifices and leaps of faith that would eventually lead them to this moment.
I’d encourage all up and coming artists to watch as many award shows as you can, merely for the sake of morale boost. We are part of an opinion-based industry, and some in it think their opinions are fact and will do a good job of convincing you the same. They’re not. If you’re working hard enough, you’ll probably run into these people and you will definitely get rejected now and then. But hearing a global superstar like Lady Gaga talk about being told people didn’t like her look or sound will put those opinions and rejections into perspective. Everything is made up, there is no right or wrong way to do music, and you should keep making it if your heart tells you to, no matter what anyone says or thinks.
I look at people like Maren Morris, Kelsea Ballerini and think, wow, I could be up there one day too. The road to success won’t be easy by any means, but being in Nashville, it does feel within reach. I do believe it’s within reach. That, by far, is the greatest hurdle you can overcome as an artist. Having the audacity to believe in yourself, and see yourself in amazing places.
“The odds are stacked against you till the day you realize, that the ones who never made it are the ones who never tried.” – Never Slowing Down (one of the first songs I ever wrote or recorded)
I’m not a super religious person, but I do believe in signs. I believed it at Septemberfest when I came back to Illinois briefly for my mom’s birthday and ended up catching a guitar pick at the end of Maddie & Tae’s concert (I didn’t even know they were throwing it, it literally just landed in front of me.)
I also believed when Kacey Musgraves took home Album of the year, the first country artist to do so since Taylor Swift, the year I moved here, that some higher power somewhere was telling me that I was in the right place, doing exactly what I need to do to get there one day.