The life I have led so far as a musician transplanted to the United States from Yorkshire, England, is certainly a lot different from that of my parents'.
I was just on the phone with my dad today, telling him how great a job he had done raising a family of four kids on one salary, and getting us all through college. Hugh (my father) is 82 and is like our dearly departed Robin Williams, a Parkinson‚Äôs Disease sufferer. Williams' suicide brought acutely into focus the indignity of a condition which has the power to render you nonfunctional to all around you.
After a lifetime of supporting everyone in your family, it must be doubly humiliating to succumb to the syndrome.
So after all that it is probably hard for my folks to understand the pressures of the modern creative, but things have changed for sure. To start with, it's hard to imagine any family surviving from one salary these days.
And if one‚Äôs job requires that one is away from home for periods of time, it makes it all the more complicated. For these reasons I have to think twice before stepping away from home and onto a tour bus.
For some reason most people think that artists read from a completely different rule book: You're not a "real artist" unless you are in a constant state of purgatory. The only way to really enhance your credentials as a musical trailblazer is to jump off the nearest cliff! But I reject that completely. I am nobody‚Äôs martyr!
With my partner wholly committed to a full-time position in corporate fashion, it fell on me to leave no stone unturned before leaving town. First order of business was to interview and hire a full time nanny. Check.
After that, we had phone and Skype to reassure my 2-year-old that Daddy was, in fact, coming back. I learned this helping raise my now 16-year-old from opposite sides of the Atlantic after I broke up with my ex-wife: That a plan to meet again before you said goodbye went a long way to ease the anxiety of those months apart.
As a teenager,…Read more...