what I've learned on my break from the endless digital stream, and why I think I'll continue

Hello there! It's been a very busy time for me lately -- the 'good' kind of busy. By the end of the month, I will have performed 10 days out of 31. That's in addition to baking, and in addition to other news, and the general business of living life. 

Like I said, it's been "good busy." 

In between doing...all of this... and doing other stuff, I've been checking digital media more often than I should. And I keep seeing the same things that have frustrated me, or more accurately, causing me to have a lot of feelings that I've been trying to sort out for a long time...

And I'm learning a lot of my frustrations with my music career come from the digital world. It's very interesting to me... the digital world that was supposed to save and equalize everything, for bands, for musicians, it's not doing it for me. Furthermore, most things I read on the digital world seem to contradict everything that I am experiencing in the real world as a working musician.

I decided a few months ago to really step back on the digital world - not just with music, but personally. It's become a lot more stressful than I think it needs to be lately. I despise getting hate mail from people about things I say on my own personal blog. I hate getting involved in petty disagreements with people whose views contradict my lived experience (and who insist that my lived experience is wrong.) I also dislike the oversharing of personal details (no offense to anyone personally, it's just something I don't like), to the point where the only things I will post online now are pictures of food I've made, what I'm wearing, or shows I'm doing. And lately, even what I'm wearing and the food seems a bit overkill. 

People write all kinds of think pieces about how CD sales are dead. I'm doing fine. In fact, even though my TuneCore balance is a lot higher than I thought it would be (I checked today), most of my income is still streaming in, on a very regular basis, from live performance. And yes, from physical CD sales. 

I make my income from performing regularly with a band I met in the real world. A band I rehearse with in real time, every week. A band full of people I see, meet, hug, and kiss on the cheek every week. I also make income from solo gigs. Just last week, I booked a gig after my birthday party, simply by chatting with the owners of the wine bar down the street. Imagine that! It sounds so quaint and old-fashioned, doesn't it? The people who come to my live shows look us in the eyes before they tip us. They hug and kiss us after the show. They want to take pictures with me. It's different -- this feeling of living in the real world of live performance and physical attributes, when it comes to music. 

I kept fighting this frustration that I felt like I was getting nowhere in the digital world, only to open my eyes and discover that I've been making very big strides in the real world. 

In stepping back from the digital world, I've opened doors in the real world that never before seemed possible. I'm no longer embroiled in petty discussions or an endless stream of ads and clicks and views. I appreciate what the digital world has done for me. I appreciate what it continues to do for others. I know that the digital world is no less "real" than the "real world" I'm speaking of. I recognize that without the digital world, so much that I do in the real world would be more difficult. I also recognize that just because the digital world isn't working for me, doesn't mean it's not working for someone else. 

Life in the real world is where it's at for me right now. I'm just owning it fully. And it feels absolutely wonderful. It feels great to walk outside and see friends who come to gigs every week. It is amazing to be doing all of this with real, live people that I can touch and smell. I am just so into it, and it's really changed my perception of so many things.

This is kind of a long post, but it's one in a longer series where I will keep theorizing and musing. :) 

Hope you are all doing well! I am, just very busy. But busy in a good way. :)