Lessons Learned from Lemons
When the pandemic hit, I was in the middle of renovating the upstairs apartment in my house. Gigs and gatherings were paused. This actually forced me to focus on managing the renovations. I’m grateful for small crews and good builders with patience and persistence. A few times I thought “Don’t try this at home” but everything finally worked out by the end of June. I finally feel financially secure and I planted a little clover in the back yard that came up – never had normal grass stick around for more than a season.
I am most grateful for Zoom and Streamyard, and the whole community of people that put on open mics and concerts online, and the singers who participate. This helped me keep some singing momentum up. When the pandemic started, I cobbled together equipment from a former band, got a lot of help from friends in the community, and started participating in livestreams. This extended my reach from UK to out West, hearing so many people and styles and songs that I liked, and staying in touch with folks across the country whom I would only ever see once or twice a year.
I’m trying to pick back up on writing now – it always took back seat to whatever work project/deadline was looming, or whatever house project needed to be done. I’m happy to report that I’ve finished two new songs in the past couple of months, and can now focus on practicing them for performance.
Lessons learned: find a focus and give it priority; pullback and rest if you’re tired; focus on something else until you’re refreshed. Then keep going. Feel free to ask for help – a lot more people can help than you might think; put effort into keeping up with new technology.
~ Rick Drost
Cambridge, MA-based Rick Drost writes and sings songs with depth and heart, songs that repay repeated listening and convey a long love of classical music, natural wonders, and poetry. Early songwriting inspiration came from Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen. Now a retired engineer, he loves to travel around the country singing at small festivals, house concerts, and open mics. Find tunes, lyrics and more at www.rickdrostsongs.com