There’s no doubt, no matter how much you may “think” you know right now, you’ll certainly be always “learning as you go” in this wild world of being a musician. This is unquestionably a good thing, as it’s really the process that makes life and music enjoyable, as opposed to resting on one’s laurels, and feeling as if they’ve already played and done it all!
I know that I still amaze myself at just how I continue to learn and actually refine my ear and what it is I really know in music. It’s as if your ability to learn and be creative continues no matter what age you may live to! It actually is a fact that they’ve learned that we all do in fact continue to refine and get even more creative as time goes on. Just look at the many great artists and musicians who remained [productive and creative right up to their final days. I just lost my Dad, Al Ross, who was a great artist and a famous New Yorker Magazine cartoonist, and he was drawing, sketching and generally creatively expressing himself right up to the end. He understood the relationship between staying alive and his art and creativity playing a key role in that. Basically, once you’ve really made that commitment to be “at one” with your music, or any artistic medium you chose, it has now become a big part of your “life stream” and will always be important to your happiness and your survival.
Music and the guitar has always been an important part of who I am, and certainly of how I am, too! I can recall when I was first starting out, that just to see my name in a tiny article, or on the first record I was on, was such a big deal to me….now, articles seem to come out every day, and while they’re enjoyable, I really hardly pay any publicity any mind. It has to be something really earth-shaking for me to take notice, and to feel really happy about it. What matters most to me is the music. At the end of the day, I have to know whether or not I am satisfied with my new album, or my latest performance. It’s not like I’m some sort of “perfectionist”, but I must feel as if what I have created was art, and if it was truly connected to me, and most of all, is it something I can happily “live” with?!
As I look back on my work over the years, I can easily see and hear that I’ve always been learning, and that I was always letting the listener “in” on the process. Again, it’s sort of not only “learning as you go”, but also “documenting” the process as well! Those of us who can document our learning process are certainly the luckiest as artists, and we must always continue to strive for the best and most creative aspects of what we can do, and what we can continue to learn!