Ruth Gerson wrote a recent article for The Huffington Post about a little media skirmish between Taylor Swift and Bob Lefsetz, an entertaining (for us) volley of “mean” comments and hurt feelings. It is worth a quick read, but there were a few points that stuck out that I wanted to highlight:
1) There is a difference between criticism and judgment. Gerson says that “criticism is a creative endeavor to deconstruct and reconstruct art with the desire to unveil the subject of the artist, in an effort to draw near to the artist. Judgment is a totalitization of the artist — (‘This is awesome!’ ‘This sucks!’). It is a projection of the pundit only. It has little to do with the work. It’s an opinion. It reflects how the commentator feels about himself (or herself) when he listens to the artist.”
2) The put-downs that hurt us are the ones we fear are true. It does you no good to FEAR if something is true. Go ahead and dig into the issue to find out if it IS true (truth being a relative term here). If so, do you want to change? How? If it’s not true, do whatever you can to ignore those put-downs and remind yourself that YOU love what you’re doing and how.
3) There will always be more people out there who don’t know you, don’t care, or don’t like you. This is something I read on another blog today, but it fits in well with Ruth’s article. Even if you sell 10 million records in the USA, that still means that there are 300 million people in America who didn’t. Don’t take it personally. Just do whatever you can to continue connecting with the folks who will love your music.
-Chris R. at CD Baby