No one ever wrote their first song and thought to themselves, I hope I win a GRAMMY. If you did you were in it for the wrong reason. That said, if after years of dedication and perseverance the idea starts poking at your ego, don’t feel ashamed. It’s normal.
On the one year anniversary of my second GRAMMY-Nom for Confessions of a Serial Songwriter I’m looking back and thinking about why that award is the holy grail for music creators. I mean, if we’re proud of our work, if we’re moved when we work, inspired by what we do, isn’t that enough? Why do we covet a prize? A statue is not a reflection of our value. I know in my heart this is true. Still.
Personally, I don’t need validation. Perhaps want is the better word. It would reassure me that I’m not a fluke. It’s like when you look in a mirror to make sure you’re there. (Maybe you don’t do this. I do it all the time. 😳)
Glory is spotty for most of us in this business and a little recognition now and then is mood elevating. After all, our peers are letting us know our contribution made a difference. That we stand out, (at least for that year). That we moved them — why else do we do what we do if not to move others with art? Acceptance feels good and the energy in it gives us fuel to continue our journey. That matters.
Nominations for the 61st GRAMMY Awards will be announced this Friday, Dec. 7th. If you live on the left coast, you may still be sleeping. Your phone might buzz. A lot. You’ll peek at the screen and there will be a whole lotta confetti flying around — not a bad sign.
The emails will start pouring in. These good wishes will literally be the wind beneath your wings for the next 4 months.
You’ll FaceTime your daughter. She’ll be so happy for you.
You’ll lay in bed thinking about that first song you ever wrote, and how far you’ve come since then. Then you start thinking about a dress. And Spanx. Heels or flats?
There’ll be a lot of asking for “consideration.” Fair enough. You have to ask the Universe for what you want.
The night before the big event, you’ll go to the pre-party, where the champagne will be flowing and the hor d'oeuvres abundant.
Your GRAMMY medallion will be waiting for you in a felt pouch nestled inside a Tiffany box. You’ll get your official GRAMMY photo taken. You’ll introduce yourself to your favorite pop star/fellow Nominee. He won’t brush you off! You’re equals.
On the night of the Awards Show you’ll be in the Limelight. On the A-list. Walking the Red Carpet. Sitting in the Good Seats — a Star in a very crowded sky (Song title alert!) But you are a star Tonight. So Shine.
The verklemptness is so overwhelming, you might have to take a time-out in the ladies room.
Let’s face it, it’s not every day you get nominated for a GRAMMY. Statistics say you won’t. Then again it’s not everything. If you’re good at what you do there are so many other barometers: radio (though not for long), Spotify streams, calls returned, invitations to favorable rooms. The Nom. is just gravy. But what’s wrong with gravy?
Oh I know, I know, the telecast itself is an advertising infused spectacle. Don’t be a fun-buster! If you dismiss the GRAMMYS as a subjective measure or a frivolous honor then by the same token, how can you endorse an MVP program or a Nobel Peace Prize? Recognition isn’t an exact science. It’s recognition.
I never won a GRAMMY. (That’s gravy on the gravy.) But a nomination itself, in my opinion, is a win. I’m not just saying that. You’re one of five contenders that have been singled out for Outstanding Work in Your Field. BY YOUR COMPETITION!
Best of luck to all my peers (Joe, Star, Robin) and a heartfelt Congratulations to those who will be part of the 61st GRAMMY Awards. Do revel in the few months of anticipation and attention leading up to the event.
And at the ceremony when your category is on deck, if they don’t call your name may it sting for only a fraction of a second. Then throw off off those heels (or loosen your tie) and beeline over to that crazy-ass-after-party and indulge in the endless buffets and open bars. Give your Spanx a run for their money. You’ve earned it.
Weeks later when you’ve come back down to earth and your Limo has long since turned back into an Prius and some gatekeeper doesn’t return your call, or your song doesn’t make the cut, or they hired another producer because he’s/she’s hotter than you at the moment, have a look at that framed GRAMMY photo on your wall and remember: Outstanding Work In Your Field. You are not a fluke. You are definitely there when you look in the mirror. Even if you didn’t win trust me, you won.