Whenever I play music in front of a large group of people, something weird happens in my heart. No wait, let me back up, even in preparation for playing music in front of a large group of people, something weird happens in my heart. I get anxious, cranky, and uptight. I’m not fun to be around, I don’t believe in my music, and I don’t believe in myself or what I’m doing.
I’m not entirely sure why this is. I know it happens more in relation to playing full on shows than say, playing just one song at church. And I don’t know if it’s the kind of shows I do or just a lack of experience. Frankly, I don’t know what the heck it is…
But I know how I feel afterward: slightly disappointed and disheartened.
I love music. I love writing songs. I love sharing the songs I’ve written. But I hate the performance nature of shows. Not the performing part, but the questioning at people’s reaction and whether they “like” me. I hate the awkwardness of myself and the…… The……. You know? I’m not really sure. As I said, I just get weird. And it’s hard to believe in myself when that happens.
I’m not exactly sure what this means for me, if anything. Maybe it means I’ll never be a full-fledged performer. Maybe it just means that I have some things to sort out with myself. Maybe it means I need to plan better and be more prepared.
The thing is, as a song writer I can’t just keep songs to myself. I wouldn’t write songs if I didn’t want them to be heard. And they will be heard – whether by my friends or my church or the world: they’ll be heard. And someday I won’t be so “unlike myself” with playing shows, or I won’t be playing shows because it makes it hard to like myself. But whatever happens, I’ll still be writing music.