I went to an open mic earlier this week, one of the most popular ones in town where many talented musicians perform. It was my first time there and besides the local legend running the open mic, I hadn’t heard of any of the performers. As I watched them, I couldn’t help but think of all the talented musicians out there in the world and the disparities between how this talent plays out.
Why is one musician performing at a local open mic while others are selling out stadiums on a world tour? Is it luck? Is it perseverance? Is it fate?
Of course, this train of thought led me right to the subject of this blog, who has said in several interviews that he attributes his success to perseverance (he said the advice he gives to his kids is “never give up, never give up, never give up.”). He says that he was a terrible student and he may have pursued becoming a veterinarian or an Egyptologist if he did better in school (I’m never sure if he’s joking about that, but we’ll go with that he’s not.) But instead he continued to pursue music (and acting) because he hadn’t prepared to do anything else.
But I think it’s more than that. I think every person is here to fulfill some kind of mission and apparently his is music. Even his initials spell it out. (RS = rock star). (A note to future parents: initials matter. For instance, the musician that everyone gets confused with RS isn’t as fortunate in the initials department.)
When you look at his career, it’s pretty apparent. He was successful in Australia, and then he comes to the United States and finds success again (not immediate, that’s where the perseverance plays a role, I suppose) and then walks away from it all. And then comes back and finds it AGAIN. It’s what he’s meant to do. I find it so inspiring. I love hearing stories about people following their passions – sometimes against all odds – and finding success.
And as for the veterinarian aspect, in a sense he is an honorary one because he helps organizations who help dogs and other animals through his charitable support. As for Egyptology, there’s still an opportunity for that, too. Maybe on a trip to the Middle East someday, he can take part in an archaeological dig and discover something among the ruins that will change history.
But for now, I’m glad (as are so many others) that he’s continuing to make music, tour, etc. (Did I mention yet that I have second-row seats to a show in July? Whoo-hoo!)