"Creativity ... It's vital. It's the way we heal each other." That caught my attention, I skipped back in the podcast to hear Ethan Hawke's TED talk Give Yourself Permission to be Creative (note: video link).
I listen to quite a few podcasts. Some for humor, some for news and some for inspiration. Sometimes I start on a channel and just let it flow from episode to episode, which is how I stumbled upon Ethan Hawke (not literally, of course. I promise no artists were harmed in the writing of this article).
He said that art helps us make sense of our lives. We need to know if anyone has felt "this" before and how did they make sense of it. "This" might be a situation, a feeling or a belief. "This" might be terrible or wonderful.
My songs want you to know that your "this" matters; you matter. You. Matter. Your complicated love life. Your secret shame. Your irrational joys. All of You. My songs want to hold your heart gently. Even when they are recorded badly or my voice cracks, my songs are your friends.
They are also my friends. They tell me that I matter, even with voice cracks and wonky recordings. I think it's easy to lose a bit of joy each time we judge ourselves. Strangely enough, sometimes judgment says "There's not enough joy in this activity, you'd better put it away until you can do it with more joy. Put it away until you can do it better." Judgment says "Stop." Joy says "Go."
But "Go" can be scary or lonely, overwhelming or confusing. Songs hold our hands and guide us. Songs show us we're not alone. This is how we heal ourselves. This is how we heal each other. Falling Down