Hi. My name is Chad and I play guitar, mandolin and sing in the band Kinsey Ry. Out of necessity, I've also engineered, produced and mixed most of our latest EP, Seasons Change. This necessity of learning the production side of music first comes from a love for music and sound, secondly, and more importantly, out of a need to stay afloat in the waters of relevancy. How do we stay current/relevant, market and produce music for everyone to hear with almost no budget for anything? At the end of the day, it's an issue that every new, and sometimes old artists find themselves dealing with.
In every artist's journey to find recognition and acceptance we sometimes lose the passion that brings us to make music in the first place: the feeling that art gives us. It's every human emotion on display in a beautiful chorus, the dark watercolors on canvas, or the black ink that forms the words in a whimsical Silverstein poem. To those who are gifted with the talent to make art we all want the same thing: to be noticed. Yes, it's a slightly egotistical and self-serving desire that we have, but it's for a reason. We just want to share with you. Can you imagine if Dylan had never played out in Greenwich Village or Van Gogh picked up the brush? Now I'm not including myself or my band into the company of greatness and I do welcome the judgment of the people to determine the good from the bad. Although, I will say fall in love with whatever strikes you. You be the one to build your playlist and fill your bookshelf. We too often let society determine what we like, but I digress.
Recently, I've been asking myself the question of whether my last ten years, which include a music degree, moving twelve hundred miles from home and giving my heart and soul into a ruthless music industry have been worth it. Have I missed out on a career that would find me more financially stable and given me time for other hobbies I enjoy? This constant self-reflection is a side effect of the everyday struggle to get a million views, followers and/or likes. I think most of us would even settle for half that. I can't say for sure, but the love for music has kept me from quitting. It's that unrequited love for making something that you hope another person can find solace in. That feeling of YES, someone else DOES feel the same way I do and that I'm not alone. The words "I've got another confession my friend, I'm no fool. I'm getting tired of starting again somewhere new," from the Foo Fighters' Best of You have gotten me through the heartbreak of a love coming to an end. Someone said exactly how I feel! How rad is that!?
If you were expecting me to say you should be tweeting everyday and constantly submitting to placement services that can give your music a chance, I'm sorry I haven't yet... but yes, do that! Luckily, the Internet has made it much easier for you to be an email away from a music supervisor and getting worldwide distribution from the apps we use to fill our playlists. It's also made it easy for every band to have a presence. There are so many great bands out there I haven't even discovered yet. I look at that as both a positive and a negative. On the positive side, it's exciting to know that my next favorite song could be only a couple clicks away. On the flip side, how in the hell do I get picked from the crowd of thousands to be on your playlist? The point is, never give up because you're thirty and haven't had a number one hit. If you really do love making music, or any other form of art, you will find ways to keep going. I realize I might never have a song on the charts and that's ok. I don't ask for sympathy in my lack of mainstream success in what some might think is a fools errand. I do ask for empathy for those who sacrifice to make and do something they love and believe in. It makes us artists no different from the programmer who has an idea for the next great video game, the engineering student who dreams of building the next Space Needle or Navy recruit that loves flying so much he hopes to be the next Maverick (I know, sick Top Gun reference). Yes, they might sound crazy, but so what.
Follow Chad and Kinsey Ry at www.kinseyry.com