Nobody Knows You When You're Down And Out

Nobody Knows YouWe just posted a new Windhaven song. Well, we posted it yesterday. As usual, it was put out there with much hope and a little excitement, followed by slight disappointment and much soul searching when it got virtually no notice from friends and relatives. However much I tell myself that I’m not going to be bothered if no one notices, it still saddens me a bit when something I’m rather proud of lands with a dull thud. But, of course, they usually do.

Victoria and I hammered together a cover of the old Blues standard “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out”. We’ve started assembling backing tracks to use for Windhaven’s live shows, and this is one we decided to complete so that we can include it on a demo CD that we’ll peddle to club owners. So… it’s purpose was to help with marketing the band, not impress friends and relatives. But sometimes I think it’d be nice if more friends and relatives noticed. I mean, how much effort does it take to click on a button on Facebook and listen to a song?

We have to remind ourselves that our target audience is probably not our friends and relatives. And personally, I believe that as long as I’m singing most of the songs we’re not going to get much notice from Victoria’s friends and relatives. But we have to keep in mind who our target audience is. It’s certainly not the people who have had to put up with our hopes and dreams and these many years, and who have seen countless songs come and go.

I think Windhaven squandered most of its initial momentum when we took so long to reconfigure after our percussionist left. It was a tougher transition over to guitar than I expected, and I’m still not totally convinced that an acoustic act is what I’m best at. But I don’t have any way to play electric, really, so if we want to work, it’s going to be as an acoustic act.

I guess in the greater sense it’s just disappointing to work hard on something and to be excited about putting it out there, only to find out that no one cares. I don’t mean this in a self-pitying way at all. It’s one thing to make the music, but it’s quite another to market it. And let’s face it, Facebook and other social media is just a tool. But the best way to get new people to like your work is to go out and put it in their face. When it comes to Windhaven, I’m more excited about what we’re about to do as a live act than with what we’re doing in the studio. Although we’re working on the CD of original material at the same time we’re putting together the backing tracks for our lives shows. So it’s all part of the same thing. Still… there are times when you need some kind of validation as an artist, and it’s clear we’re not going to get that until we get back out there into the clubs.

So, am I disappointed? Sure. I think “Nobody Knows You” is a great tune, even though I cringe, still, when I hear my voice. Victoria keeps telling me that I need to practice more before I record songs, but I keep wanting to tell her that “it ain’t going to get any better”. My voice is what it is. It’s kind of like a band-saw cutting wood, and it’s either on or off. There’s not a lot of nuance. It’s useful, yes, and better suited to a live environment than the studio, but loads of practice really isn’t going to make it any better. If it gets better any time soon, it’ll be from live performances and the seasoning that comes from consistent work.

Anyway, I’m babbling. I made myself a promise that I wouldn’t do that in my blog anymore. Unfortunately, that’s largely meant that I stopped posting. Apparently without the babbling, I have very little to say.

Despite my disappointment over the indifference of friends and relatives, I do believe in what we’re doing with Windhaven. The cover tunes are never going to be our forte. It’s the original music that will let us get this zeppelin off the ground. So the best is certainly yet to come. But I’m more convinced than ever that if you rely on your friends and relatives for support, you’re going to suffer. It’s the strangers who don’t know you and aren’t annoyed by your presence that will render the most support. They’re the ones you can still make a fresh impression upon. And they should be, and are, the target.

It is, however, mildly ironic that we would post a song titled “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out” and find that truer words were never spoken. As I’ve often told Victoria in regard to the indifference of friends and family members, they’ll all know us when they hear us on the radio.

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