Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Civil Wars

Given the chance to talk about somebody else as the topic of my blog today, the choice came easily.  I stumbled upon some videos on YouTube of my favorite music artists, The Civil Wars, and have been watching and re-watching them for the past couple days.  The pursuit of an artistic life, whether that art is written, played, sung, or sculpted, comes with certain hurdles.  This is true for everyone, even the people who seem to have an easy ride.  Opening up the soul to create art is inherently fraught with conflict, with judgments, with highs and lows that touch on depths whose ripples can define a life.  There is vulnerability in submitting to our art, and even more in sharing what our art produces.  Writers know this.  Singers.  Painters.  We all know what it is and yet we do it anyway.  This makes me think of one of my favorite quotes by Anais Nin: "And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom."

So, we blossom, in sometimes funny-shaped blooms and endure through unpredictable weather toward our goals.  What moved me so much about the two Civil Wars videos I posted (aside from the amazing music) is the discussion with high school students about the winding path that, after ten or more years in the music industry, led them to each other and to the amazing ride they are now on.  The second video talks about the inspirations for their lyrics.  For me, hearing their journey made me feel better about my own winding journey. I hope wherever you are on the path, you find something inspiring about them too.

The trailer for my YA debut, The Wild Wood, available June 29, 2012.


Debra Lynn Lazar said...

I'm lucky beyond belief that I've gotten to see them "live" twice in the past year. They are art personified - the very definition of what it looks like when you listen to your soul and let it speak through you. I'm ultimately inspired.

Jeremy Bates said...

I had never even heard of "The Civil Wars" until I happened upon your blog. Not bad. Thanks for sharing this. I am now following your blog to see what other new things I will happen upon.