Is it worth it?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by resonator, Jan 26, 2006.

  1. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    Thanks for the clarification - I have gone back and read letters to people I have written (and for some reason never got mailed) and I really miss the bright-eyed, passionate, idealistic person that I was when I was 19-20 years old and had my whole life ahead of me, beholden to no one, and with very few responsibilities.

    You are right about how everything needs to be considered. Did I take my eye off the goal? Yeah, maybe, but truthfully, while I'm not as involved in music as I would like to be, I can't imagine my life had I not taken the path that I have and made some of the choices I have made. What if I had chosen to not get married because of its possible detriment to my music career? Sure, I might be doing something more with music, but my life would be far less rich without my children, and you really can't put a price on that.

    This has been a very interesting discussion.
  2. krossum

    krossum Piano User

    Aug 23, 2005
    New York, NY, USA

    "vocational vs. avocational music making"

    I would be very interested in pursuing this topic. It's all about choices...


    Great (boldtype) questions. very thought provoking:) It's never simple, but always possible. Again, choices...

    IMHO, Yes, it's worth it.
  3. A.N.A. Mendez

    A.N.A. Mendez Utimate User

    Oct 25, 2005
    Sunny Ca.
    I faced this question in 1969. I could have....
    1. tried working with a band doing clubs @ 18 years old (hard to get into bars)
    2. Joined the military Band(I had offers) but they wanted 6 years
    3. Hang around town and just join a community band.
    4.Put it away for awhile(it was my "life" since I was 9)

    I chose to put it away and try not being a trumpet player for awhile.
    I had such a great run, in a prep school that I had gotten a music scholarship to attend, we had marching band (of course) big band, combo,small choral group, I had a "Tiajuana Brass Band" that we had fun with. We had guest Broadway show guys come in the summer to teach composing and arranging. We did shows, old vaudeville stuff, it was a blast.
    But I put it away...... till last year.
    I'll always wonder what would have happened if I had joined the military band program, or continued some other way.
    I guess I'll never know but I sure am glad I know how to play. I just have horns all over the house and I pick them up all day at any time and just play whatever strikes me. It's neat to be a trumpet player
    You guys that are out there doing the hard stuff, reading the charts and making music are the real heros, I wish I knew what that was like.
    Anyway I'm rambling now but I want to say it's good to be connected even if only by this website to other trumpet players.I mean it's a trumpet! you're not hiding in the back row going unheard.It's trumpet!
    Cheers to all of you!
  4. eric m berlin

    eric m berlin New Friend

    Feb 3, 2006
    Amherst, MA
    As a kid, I knew by middle school that I wanted to play for a living. I was so turned on by music that I could see no other option. I had a clear goal of being a symphonic player when I was in high school. My own career has taken some interesting twists and turns and my career is not exactly as I planned back then, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.

    The original question is a good one. Unless you are in the highest echelon of the business, doing what we love does often have a high price tag. There are extraordinary stresses on the job, financial insecurity, too much time traveling (Can you believe, I drove 45,222 miles last year!) etc. Each of us has to balance the costs and rewards on an individual basis.

    I am interested in this as it relates to the young players facing college choices. I was having this discussion with a student at NEC just a week ago. She is disheartened by music and the business and has decided to leave school and pursue other things. In our conversation, she told me she thought that she only chose to pursue music because she was good at it. This is a situation that I have seen in many music students, even at my own university. Somehow, we as educators, without killing the joy they experience, must help students make their choices based on a clearer picture of reality. Although we all want to keep that childlike element in the performance of music, being a musician in real life bears little resemblance to the marching band trip to Disney. How do we help them clarify their motives?

    I think that Ed Carrol's question to students is quite poignant and gets to the heart of the issue. As many on this forum can attest, it is possible to keep music in your life without relying upon performance to put food on the table. (Most of the pros out there can probably count a few instances where gigging wasn’t able to pay the bills!) You can continue to play avocationally for a lifetime. It can serve as a balance to an otherwise stressful job. If Ed asked me that question when I was in high school, I know that the answer would be “I need to playâ€. This becomes truer every day for me.

    The answer to this question for me is that it has been worth every bit of hardship and sacrifice to be able to sit on stage and make great music. I am a lucky man.

    Best wishes,
  5. A.N.A. Mendez

    A.N.A. Mendez Utimate User

    Oct 25, 2005
    Sunny Ca.
    That "need to play" is a good point. All my life when listening to any good music I never felt right, I needed more.It was enjoyable but never enough just to listen. I needed to PLAY it. Now that I've started noodling around the past year and a half I can stand or sit with the horn and pick out any (well almost any) song in my head and it is very fulfilling.

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