I’m 38 years old. I am a wife of a wonderful and hard-working man, that I love. I am the mom of 5 amazingly creative and intelligent children, that I’d do anything for. In my life, I’ve had struggles and troubles, triumphs and standstills. This makes me like hundreds of thousands of human beings out there. I would think that this makes me relatable.
I have a double-chin that comes out in full force when I’m singing. I have baby weight that absolutely refuses to come off, no matter how much exercise and diet I do. I look like your average American mom. I would think that this also makes me relatable.
I’m aging fairly well, but every year I get a few new grays. I see more lines around my eyes and mouth. My forehead has been creased since I have been in my 20’s. (Thank the powers that be for bangs.) Most people, when they don’t realize I have 5 children, think that I am in my late 20’s/early 30’s. But the wrinkles and grays are there, and multiplying as is natural. I’m cool with that. Someday I want pure white hair that hangs down my back like I saw once on some mountain women when at a country church in Knoxville. It was beautiful. For now, I’m enjoying changing my hair color to suit my whim until it all is fairly white. I would think that this too, would make me relatable.
Also, I think that with age, comes wisdom, if you live in humility. If one refuses to abide by the plasticity of the mainstream industry, one will have depth to their artistry. But it’s a hard road that you will probably have to trek (mostly) alone. I’ve realized this for the dozen plus years I’ve been in the industry, straight from the beginning. And anytime I’ve been confused with my direction, it is because I’ve tried to please someone else. My music is always better when I learn from well-meant advice, and then do things my way.
As a result, I’ve not tried to book meetings with any label for years. I’ve had a few reach out to me. I had one decide to not sign me, because of my age. I have a music licensing deal with a label that I applaud for not caring about age, but instead respecting talent. The reason behind this is that I know what the labels want, and I know that I don’t have it.
I can sing really well. I can write songs that are darned good. I can play a decent rhythm guitar. I am tall, carry my extra weight fairly well, and am not too ugly to look at. I have a small, loyal following. All this doesn’t matter to the mainstream industry. And that’s okay with me. If by some chance, a major label decides to sign me, I’ll consider it. However, because I’m 38, overweight, have a family, and don’t have a big enough fan base yet, I’m not what they want. And that’s alright with me.
I’ll be the lame, straight-shooting “rebel” that does things my way. I consider success to be more than dollars. I have the freedom to write what I want, which for years has spoken to the “normal” folk, and especially the sensitive souls like me. I’ll take the slow climb. I’ll sing on subjects that I think are important. I’ll book my own gigs. I’ll manage myself. I’ll be successful in my own right.
I may not ever win a Grammy, but I’m sure gonna try. I may not ever get to the “big stage”, but I’m going to work towards it with everything I’ve got. I probably won’t have a Billboard hit, but I’m gonna keep on writing the best that I can. I’ve not ever quit yet. I don’t plan on it. I’ll be that wrinkled old woman, with long white hair, clumsily plucking my guitar strings, and singing my soul out to the audience. Why?
I’m a lame rebel.