Those underdog stories that are anything but fairytale for long stretches, bordering on eternity. Until the moment something takes off, there is surface stillness, no intimation of the creative fervor beneath. This is the story I like, it is almost a myth among crowds deceived by shiny surfaces.
I’ve come to prefer the unsung musician, the journeyman, over the artist who gets everything before he or she has begun. There are many on this journey, strewn among us. We recognize them for the wisdom imparted, for the mistakes they admit they have made.
It is not simple consolation that informs this conception of freedom. It is a greed for access to the kind of slowed-down life that allows the rough-edged songs to emerge, when no one is listening. No gated-in freedom this, but lost-among-the-people lingering. Those lazy days when no one is there to call you out for telling the truth.
Obscurity is the place where observation thrives, free to construct new realities not influenced by those who have been crowned heir to the past generation’s proven influencers, disrupters.
It is hard to navigate the cast-iron alleyway of expectation, no matter how hip the garb. There is really no way to let original material flow when there is big money and legions of followers involved. How the Beatles managed it for five years, I cannot fathom — they may have had John Lennon and he may have had Yoko, but even that, in the end, was not enough.
The element of myth in all consolation stories. The words one begins to tell oneself on the road toward hidden ends.