Is Originality Overrated?
by J.P. Kallio
Success, even little bit of it has a funny effect on you. And let’s make it clear before people jump to the gun here, success does not mean you are loaded straight away. It is funny how often people think I have a some magic fairy out there farting money and investing it in to my career. Surely no one has time to blog as much as I do, if they still need to worry about bills… Well I do, pretty much every month. It is early hours of Monday morning while I write this post, I spent six hours of my Sunday playing in a bar. As much as I love it all, if I was loaded the way some people think I am, that’s not how I would spend my Sunday. It is my determination that drives me. Oh yeah, and love for the music as well.
But as soon as you see signs of success, you notice how people start to follow your footsteps. Other artists see you do something successful, so they try to replicate what you do. First when you notice this you feel somehow cheated. They are stealing your ideas and you get no credit for it… These are some of those useless thoughts that you waste energy on, rather than seeing the positive. You should not really care that much. Or even better, take it as a compliment. It is a sign of someone looking at what you do and think they would like to be in your shoes.
Now let’s be honest here for a second. Did all of those steps you took to get where you are now were your original ideas? More than likely not. There are 7 billion people on this planet of ours and you think no one has never tried what you are doing before? Do you think your original songs were not influenced by anybody else? Stop fooling yourself… We all soak up influences from all around us all the time even if we don’t knowledge it. But that’s alright, that is what makes music interesting. And that is what music has always been.
As to the business side, you would be pretty bad a running your business if you did not look at the competition and see what has worked and what has not in the past. So why when it comes to music we think the business is any different? Why in the music we live in an illusion if you get too deep in the business you have sold your self? And you have some how sacrificed your artistic integrity. The truth is, the bigger the record label behind you, the less control you have as an artist. So if you get smart in the business, run it your self and eventually build your own team around you, it is you who calls the shots. And just maybe you actually get to do something original
J.P. Kallio is a singer-songwriter