Sometimes a Step Back is a Stage Dive into Freedom: Why I Ditched Full-Time Music

Musicians, we've all chased the dream, haven't we? The freedom of setting your own schedule, the thrill of a live performance, the joy of pouring your soul into music for a living. I tasted that dream, too, transitioning from working a day job to solo piano/vocal gigs and the whirlwind of wedding and party bands. And let me tell you, the perks were undeniably tempting: generous pay, flexible hours, and the satisfaction of honing your craft with every performance. Who wouldn't sign up for that?

Don't get me wrong, the job was sweet on paper; making big money, being my own boss, clocking out after a few hours? Sign me up! And the best part? Playing music, singing my heart out, honing my skills – I'd made it, right?

But then the speakers started spitting static. Playing the same covers night after night felt like karaoke torture. My voice, once a effortless tool of expression, became a funhouse mirror reflection, distorted and unrecognizable from constant overuse. Music, my muse, morphed into a demanding taskmaster. I stopped listening, creating, dreaming. My original songs gathered dust in the digital attic, my recording gear a silent monument to lost inspiration.

The worst part? The soul-sucking unhappiness. I felt fake, a glorified jukebox for the privileged few, forced to grin while my passion curdled inside. It wasn't about the money anymore, it was about the cost – the cost to my creativity, my authenticity, my damn sanity.

So, I did the unthinkable. I took a step back, a stage dive into the unknown. Traded the gigs for a “real job” again, traded the applause for… well, normal work. But guess what? The music came back like a melody I'd forgotten. I started listening again, devouring new sounds, rediscovering old loves. The urge to create roared back, fueled by freedom, not obligation. My original songs are finally seeing the light of day, recorded in my little home studio, fueled by genuine passion.

This isn't about saying full-time music sucks. It's about recognizing when the dream turns into a cage. It's about the courage to step back, re-evaluate, and choose a path that nourishes, not suffocates, your soul. Maybe for you, that means scaling back, setting boundaries, or finding creative side hustles. Whatever it is, listen to your inner rockstar – the one who craves true expression, not just performance.

Remember friends, sometimes the biggest leap forward is a step back from the edge. Take a breath, find your rhythm, and write your own story.

P.S. Hit me up in the comments! Let's share stories, struggles, and triumphs. We're in this together, even if we're not on the same stage.

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