Arthur Russell

Recommended to me by Andrew, I fell in love with this documentary and Arthur’s music. It has inspired me to be more prolific, to continue making an endless body of work. I have aspired to this since high school as I’ve always been rather slow, careful and thoughtful with my work. This is a positive aspect in many ways but sometimes can lead to me being over critical and less productive, thinking more than doing.

When I made my first little demo last summer, I was very precious with it. I knew that I had a lot to learn and I was anxious to make everything sound and look professional. It is important to start by knowing the rules and then breaking them, and so I do value the process I  under went. But now, especially with my limited time in music do to my preoccupation with art school, i want to start making recordings again in a less precious and more experimental way. experimental interns of how I generate sound.. i.e. Arthur leaving the blender on in the back of his recording, brilliant!  I love how the compilation “World of Echo” is an hour of partly finished songs. I think this is also key in being productive, getting the idea out rather than completing something.

Last year my attitude shifted from quietly writing songs and fumbling around the most basic chords in the confines of my room to beginning to except that I am a musician, even if simply because of these secluded actions. Musicians were always other people that I greatly admired and fell in love with and to accept myself as one of them felt impossible. Once I allowed this simple shift in identification I, without realizing, built up expectations of myself.   I had to be really “good” and as I continued to play and write I would get extremely frustrated at myself for not being “good” and over analyze my qualities and abilities. Focusing on art/uni has allowed me to remove some of the expectations and ego attached to my music making and I hope to make recordings over the summer whilst being  more kind and generous to myself, using the experience as an opportunity for exploration and growth instead of a product which will prove my worth, value, or acceptance. It’s ironic that I’m insecure about my voice not being that natural talent of many of my peers and yet the voices that I like the most are also a bit imperfect or odd.

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Arthur Russell

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