Art and life co-habitate, informing, imitating, and enriching each other constantly. Each week in Better Living Through Music, RFT Music writer Ryan Wasoba explores this symbiotic relationship
Thanksgiving is not a hip holiday. The thought of actually spending the day giving thanks is cheesy, but there's nothing lame about gratitude. This year, I suggest you find ways to earnestly and sincerely thank those in the local music community whose actions or words have enriched your life.
Say, for example, you love a specific song by a local band. I have a soft spot for "You Can't Have It All" by Pretty Little Empire. 'Tis the season to tell the band, "Thanks for making that song. I love the way the instruments come back in after the hook." The more specific, the better. "Hey Stan Chisholm, that line in 'Ice Cold Tofu' by 18andCounting about seasonal depression and lucky rabbits' feet is one of the smartest lyrics I've heard in a while."
This is not ego stroking, this is breaking the barrier of cool that too often keeps us from adequately nerding out over those whose work we admire. "Beth Bombara, you have a beautiful voice and I respect your work ethic." Sometimes the bonds are so close between those in this community that compliments are difficult to give or take. Screw that. "Hey, So Many Dynamos, that new EP is so very good, I'm incredibly proud of you guys, and I can't wait for the full length."
Giving musical thanks is a two-way street. If you are in a band, don't just send out a generic "Happy Thanksgiving, thanks for your support" Tweet or a Facebook status message. Find the profile of that one guy who always comes to your shows but never says hi, and thank him for being there for you. Find that girl who was the only person who bought merch from you the one night you opened for that hyped up band who was supposed to be a big deal but nobody really came to the show. Tell her that this gesture made your day.
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