“We are Committed to You,” shone on the stage screen last night as Portugal: The Man began to play in Avila Beach. What followed was two hours of psychedelic, mind-bending music that had me both swaying and thinking about the artist’s relationship with the audience.
When we create it might seem like we are doing so alone, but I believe we are tapping into a shared force, tapping into a part of the human consciousness that transcends our individual minds. And this essential part of our beings is most evident through music.
Music is co-creation at its best. As the singer, guitarist, bassist, pianist, drummer, flutist, or other player fashions each note, they are bringing a new being into existence. And this creature is one that we share. It floats over air reaching out long fingers that massage, tickle, prickle, caress, irk, stimulate, and compel. In this moment we either join in its embrace or reject the outstretched hands.
How does an artist design work that begets open arms and ears? I believe by having the same commitment as Portugal the Man. Several years ago they set out with several core principles. One was, “We would cultivate our fanbase by developing a relationship with them by treating them like peers and always trying to give them more.” Another was that after family, music was the most important thing in their lives. Their driving principle is to share who they are at their core.
Quite a commitment.
And an inspiration. Making me redefine my own mission. I am a writer and I am committed to make freakin’ fun, fantasies that transport readers to mystical places where imagination reigns.
What is your commitment as an artist?
A teacher, Laurie Woodward is the author of several novels including Forest Secrets, and the fantasy series The Artania Chronicles. She also cowrote Dean and JoJo: The Dolphin Legacy and was a collaborator on the popular anti-bullying DVD Resolutions. Bullied as a child, Laurie is now an award-winning peace consultant and blogger who helps teach children how to avoid arguments, stop bullying, and maintain healthy friendships. She writes her novels on the Central Coast of California.