Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Multiple Personalities? Are You Kidding?

Three personalities exist within each one of us musicians. These three types are found in every human being who sets them-self out to do something significant.

  1. The Technician
  2. The Manager
  3. The Entrepreneur
Today, let's unpack the Technician.


Most of us can easily relate to the Technician. After all, that's what musicians are. They're technical masters of their instrument. They know how to hold, handle and caress their instrument to evoke the subtleties of which it is capable. The best musicians are awesome technicians


Think of the depths of knowledge, skill and self-discipline a symphonic orchestra professional possesses, to be able to subject herself to the technical needs of the part, the dictates of the section leader (bow it this way, not that way), the commands of the conductor, all the while executing a musical phrase that matches the dynamic, timbral, rhythmic and stylistic context.

Oh yeah baby, an orchestral musician is a technical master! It boggles the mind just to ponder it all.

Shall I go on and describe the technical prowess of a rhythm guitarist? A latin percussionist? A mezzo-soprano? A high school music keener? They're ALL awesome technicians. (I hope you're not one of those snotty types who thinks that YOUR instrument takes more technical skill than those OTHER instruments. Oh, go away. You make me gag.)

Here's the way technicians think:
  • I practiced hard to get where I am
  • I continue to be really good at what I do
  • I know all the ins and outs of this thing I do
  • Most other people have no idea how I do what I do
  • I'm pretty comfortable doing what I do
  • People need me. Man, do they need people like me!
  • I hate it when people have no idea what I do
  • I hate it when people take my skills for granted
  • I hate it when people think what I do is simple and easy
  • Leave me alone so I can do my thing! 
Musician, do you see yourself in that bullet list?

Could anyone be a musician WITHOUT having a technical side?  Leave a comment.

Stay tuned for the next post: The Manager.


David Story said...

Ya, I'm on the list.

"Could anyone be a musician without having a technical side?" Yes, to a point. But, it will limit your potential, or doom you to a specific genre in which your limited skills suffice. But, you ain't going to play with the MET orchestra anytime soon.

I'm have students from time to time who hope the above is true. But, they get to university or college and.... crash.


Glen Brown said...

The more I think about it, the more I appreciate what they emphasized at Mohawk College: you are not just a musician, you are also a businessperson. Thanks for your comment!