I absolutely love getting creative. Throughout my life there have been times where I have limited my creativity due to fear of what people think or fear that I would fail. I am currently rediscovering creativity without limitations and I feel better for doing so.
When I was fifteen I'd spend hours in my room writing song after song. I put no limitations on what I wrote or how I wrote because my songs were my outlet. Whenever I struggled with a situation or a person, I did not retaliate to them. Instead I would go home and put my emotions into a song, sing it, write it and revisit it whenever I had similar feelings. As I got older this method changed. I began to think 'What do other people want to hear?', 'Will anyone relate to this?' and suddenly my songs were no longer for me. They were for other people.
I began to write less. I even started throwing away old songs. I was so caught up in trying to please other people with my music that I forgot how to be creative. I felt as if no-one would like what I wrote and no matter how hard I tried to create something I always hated it. This was my mindset for a few years until I had a bad day. I felt overwhelmed, I had so much emotion that I didn't even know what to do with it. Finally I sat down at my piano and I began to vent my feelings into a song. I came up with lyrics and after I had sung I wrote them down in my little book and I felt as if I had found what had been missing. Sometimes forcing yourself to get creative because of pressures is more damaging than productive. It is often good just to be creative for yourself. Create because it is something you enjoy.
Whilst I was in the studio I realised that I had finally become creative again. I was through 2 of my tracks and working on the third. This was a huge breakthrough for me as a musician and as a songwriter. I had actually written songs that I like and I had no fear of other peoples opinions. It felt great just to create these songs without worry. I never had the intention of recording this year without the songs in place and everything came together. I got my creative spark back just before I had arranged to record. It wasn't an easy process. Most musicians know you have days of non-stop writing and other days you can't even write a line for a verse!! I want to encourage you that it is okay to have times where you have some sort of block. I feel the best songs come after these moments and realisations.
My advice to any musician would be... Do not throw away ANY songs. Write down every line and idea you get into a book. If you get stuck, although it is frustrating, just try to wait and over time you'll find that something or someone just sparks an idea or when you go back to an idea it will come to life. Do not be afraid to be creative and to try new things. I wish I'd of done this years ago but I had to learn that my music is about my expression and it is not about pleasing every single person... because lets face it, that is impossible.
The pictures above are of my little brother and the legend guy that is Stuart. We spent a whole day in Stuart's studio working on Track 2 on Saturday. We had so much fun and we were bouncing ideas of eachother constantly. Sometimes another good thing to do is write with another person or ask another person for help. I often find that I am great at writing lyrics and melodies but I am quite bad at the music part, writing out chords and trying to see what fits where. I have many friends who are the opposite and so I often go to them whenever I get stuck. Creativity is a wonderful thing and I am so glad that I managed to stop putting limitations on myself whilst I began writing last year. I cannot wait for people to hear my songs now and I am very thankful for Stuart and Hayden this week. They were absolutely awesome and this EP is going to be epic because of their ideas and encouragement.