Friday, July 5, 2013

Future of Music/Art: Trust, not risk

Having just watched alt rock icon Amanda Palmer's TED Talk (courtesy of NPR's TED Radio Hour 's series on "Giving"), I am taking what she says as an article of faith. 

She talks a lot about faith as she describes her street performance, and couch surfing around the world, and passing the hat at her shows.  She calls it "trust, not risk."

Her presentation is simply stunning to me, as I produce newscasts, advocate for the arts and constantly negotiate for my clients.  Is it a "commodity exchange"  (trading products and services for cash)?  Is it a "philanthropic exchange" (trading cash for an altruistic purpose)?

Art is, of course, both.  I derive real value from the music and art I enjoy.  It has tangible benefits for my creative work and quality of life.  And there is a high spiritual reward as well.

I can't urge you enough to spread this message around.  It's well worth 14 minutes of your time, especially if you're in the music or art business.

"For most of human history, musicians, artists - they've been part of the community, connectors and openers, not untouchable stars.  Celebrity is about a lot of people loving you at a distance.   But the internet and the content that we're freely able to share on it are taking us back.  It's about a few people loving you up close, and about those people being enough.  It's about trust, not risk."

Her message is stunning in its simplicity, and beautiful in its implications.  Pass it on.

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