(Photo by Joe Fletcher, Beth and Kit at the 5 Spot in Nashville, TN)
This past week, I spent a few days in Nashville. People have been telling me I should move there for years. As an internationally recognized music hub, that makes a lot of sense from a business perspective, but for some reason I’ve had no desire. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s a great place. The people are so nice, and I’ve only had positive experiences there. However, the idea of living in a place where most everyone is pursuing the same thing hasn’t feel right for me. I enjoy the fact that not everyone I know is a musician or a part of the industry. I feel some liberation by calling St. Louis my home base. There is a freedom experienced by removing myself from certain expectations. I get a slightly different perspective. When I think about it, living outside of a music hub has allowed me to develop as an artist in a way I’m not sure I would have otherwise.
This topic of home base just scratches the surface of a part of my personality. I think I’ve always had a part of me that gravitates toward the unconventional. I find myself oftentimes wanting to follow the left fork in the road instead of staying on the well worn path straight ahead. I have a notion that fellow artists experience this feeling as well.
I had a mentor a few years back whose advice to me about the music industry was this: “Move anywhere BUT Nashville, New York, or LA.” Now I understand why – he saw then what I’m realizing about myself now. It’s been good for me to call St. Louis my home base for the past while, and who knows where the future will lead.
Nashville, I really like you. Don’t worry, I’ll visit often.