Independent artist work so hard, so often to no avail. It kills me when I see so many people listening to the junk on the radio while an abundance of genius is lost in oblivion, waiting for the proverbial knock-of-opportunity.
I had dinner with a friend, Ray Rivera, at the IHOP in Monterey Park tonight. The allure of breakfast at 7pm will stupefy a man. Also, there is something about that particular IHOP that makes it better than any other pancake house I’ve been to. Maybe it’s only the bright lighting but everything there is always fresh and laid out perfect before me. Tonight’s plate was replete with five biscuits smothered with gravy, divided by five sausage links and flanked on both sides by eggs and hash browns. Mmmmm. I had a little bit of a problem with the coffee, had them make a new pot, but it was the roast. Antigua has spoiled me.
Anywhoo. As we sat there discussing his new album and the marketing of said album, I began to calculate (in my head) how many independent artist are out there putting together very good music, very good films and very good - fill in the blank. Many of these artists are sitting at other places across the world having similar discussions over food; what must be an inconceivable variety of foods.
But it’s not he food that boggles me! (Mmmmm. Foooood.) Really! It’s just so crazy how many people out there are trying to reach you and me at a genuinely personal level through art. Think of how many galleries and gigs are set up every single day to share these peoples essences. How many dreams are realized and how many dreams are crushed? Daily.
Ray, has a large amount of talent, an endless supply of ambition. Even so, his eyes lost a little bit of shimmer, as he says to me, over his two-by-two-by-two meal, “Maybe I should try managing (other acts).”
What!! And give up on your own dream!!?? I did that a long time ago and it still hurts me.
This is where I admit: I am one of the guilty will would sometimes listen to Power 106, instead of popping in some classic Ollin. But, I AM ALSO, a big supporter of local art and music. I would rather see a small local show than a big-headliner concert.
How can we save the local artist? I don’t know….just do what you can when you can I guess. No, better yet, do a little bit more than you think you can. Hey! Don’t forget to see some local theater too. Now that is something that really needs some love. I know only a handful of people who see theater on a regular.
Blah, blah, blah! See you at the local coffee shop!
Here are some links to local artists:
BTW, I designed Ray’s last album cover: