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 Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)

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Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Empty
PostSubject: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 9:33 am

http://news.qthemusic.com/2012/07/guest_column_-_the_psychology.html

With The Gaslight Anthem releasing their new album Handwritten today (23 July), the New Jersey band can expect to be spending a lot of time on the road over the coming months. In a guest column, their drummer Benny Horowitz explains what touring does to your mind...

The psychology of the touring musician. What brings us to this? The lifestyle and the attitude of the touring musician tend to be so unique, there must be some common thread that binds us together, no? The nomadic nature, travellers and seekers in the romantic, Kerouac sense. Fear of responsibility, listless and an aversion to the "normal" 9-5 grind in the classical, dare I say republican, sense?

I've noticed some trends among my legions, but nothing that really stands out. In essence, the bulk of touring relationships are moderately fickle. Based on good times, music and general mutual interests. But rarely do they turn into a childhood, family dynamic - pain, love, fear and loss - typically the things that would drive our subconscious into the people we really are, and the decisions that drive our lives. The Spinal Tap image that most people perceive of us on the outside, is basically true.

The more I'm opened up into this fantasy land of bus parking lots, backstages and hotel rooms, the more I'm astounded at the mediocrity of its inhabitants. They are just people. People with a certain creative talent that are put in a position where people listen to what they have to say. And are asked, quite often, to say a lot. With these questions in place, I'm trying to investigate further. Like most members of the advanced human civilization of our time, I Googled my questions to see if anyone has thought of it yet, so I can appropriately steal from them and pass it off as my own

I stumbled upon Michael Brein, the travel psychologist, who lists many reasons for people, not musicians, need for travel. The most interesting seemed to be the idea that it improves your self-esteem. He says, "Anything people can do to enhance their own images of themselves elevates their estimates of their own sense of self worth in their own eyes as well as in the eyes of others." This could most likely apply to the psyche of many musicians I know, insecurity, low self-esteem and a feeling of being an outsider leads many traveling musicians to their calling.

It's actually amusing when these types of people are put onto pedestals of coolness, because their lack of coolness typically brought them there to a certain extent. For the older players, his idea of re-connecting and re-validating our lives holds water. Saying "travel enables us to make our current lives more real by re-examing the present in light of the past." This was best summarized by a TS Eliot poem saying: "We shall not cease from exploration. And the end of all our exploring. Will be to arrive where we started. And know the place for the first time."

I like this, and like I said before, it can illuminate the more romantic side of the travelling musician. Using the places and the people and the music to highlight the better parts of the past. And to further suppress the things we're all running away from in the first place. I realise this all my sound judgemental, but please know it comes from the most personal and sardonic place. In essence, all of our perception is based most closely to our own likeness.

But... I can't help but look at the people and places around me in an anthropological context. The idea of what drives people, and myself, is fascinating. With the personalities I'm surrounded with on a daily basis, it's hard not to try and figure it out. I may be barking up an endless tree, but I'm not done in my quest to figure out the psychology of my people. The nomads, the wanderers, the seekers... the travelling musician.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 11:13 am

Very well thought out. Love his depth.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 1:08 pm

Benny's too smart for me. I had to reread some of that because my brain was like "what?" *shuts down*.

I love the way he thinks though. Great article.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 5:32 pm

Jesus he's smart. Did he go to college?
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 6:46 pm

Somewhere on his blog he mentions having 30 college credits. He's very eloquent with words. I'n curious if he writes lyrics too.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 10:02 pm

redheadchick wrote:
Somewhere on his blog he mentions having 30 college credits. He's very eloquent with words. I'n curious if he writes lyrics too.

I think if he wrote them we'd all have to go buy dictionaries Razz Or at least I would.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 10:16 pm

Breanne wrote:
Jesus he's smart. Did he go to college?

Yeah, but he didn't finish. While talking to him after the St Louis show, Benny joked about hoping the band got big enough that he could get an honorary degree.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSat Jul 28, 2012 10:28 pm

ral wrote:
Breanne wrote:
Jesus he's smart. Did he go to college?

Yeah, but he didn't finish. While talking to him after the St Louis show, Benny joked about hoping the band got big enough that he could get an honorary degree.

haha he deserves an honorary degree because I'm nearly done with college and he's way smarter than me.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSun Jul 29, 2012 3:25 pm

redheadchick wrote:
Somewhere on his blog he mentions having 30 college credits. He's very eloquent with words. I'n curious if he writes lyrics too.

Quote from the latest Visions interview:
I have learned already years ago that I can't write lyrics. I love to write but not lyrics. Every time I try it sounds like political Rapcore. And nobody wants to listen to that.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeSun Jul 29, 2012 3:28 pm

enola wrote:
redheadchick wrote:
Somewhere on his blog he mentions having 30 college credits. He's very eloquent with words. I'n curious if he writes lyrics too.

Quote from the latest Visions interview:
I have learned already years ago that I can't write lyrics. I love to write but not lyrics. Every time I try it sounds like political Rapcore. And nobody wants to listen to that.

Finally a musician understands this. I absolutely hate listening to politically inspired music from any side of the political playing field. That could just be because I ABSOLUTELY HATE politics. Just a bunch of people arguing over topics they are never going to agree about. I find political figures the most childish, annoying people in the entire world.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeTue Jul 31, 2012 9:16 pm

I'm no fan of politics, but I understand some musicians using their platform to express their views. I mean, they right about their feelings, right? Well, some people feel passionate about politics that they want to put their emotions and feelings into words. I have no problem with it, and appreciate it, even if I'm not a fan of politics in general.
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PostSubject: Re: Benny's column about touring (Q magazine)   Benny's column about touring (Q magazine) Icon_minitimeTue Jul 31, 2012 11:49 pm

saltandburn1967 wrote:
enola wrote:
redheadchick wrote:
Somewhere on his blog he mentions having 30 college credits. He's very eloquent with words. I'n curious if he writes lyrics too.

Quote from the latest Visions interview:
I have learned already years ago that I can't write lyrics. I love to write but not lyrics. Every time I try it sounds like political Rapcore. And nobody wants to listen to that.

Finally a musician understands this. I absolutely hate listening to politically inspired music from any side of the political playing field. That could just be because I ABSOLUTELY HATE politics. Just a bunch of people arguing over topics they are never going to agree about. I find political figures the most childish, annoying people in the entire world.

I'm fascinated by politics and I'm passionate about my views but I'm genuinely bored with the number of bands talking about what's going on politically all the time in "society". It cool that they do it, but I'd rather connect with music personally rather than because it relates to world affairs. But to each his own. And I'd gladly listen to Benny's political music haha.
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