A very talented marketing person I’ve gotten to know recently asked if she could ask me a few questions, the answers to which would be part of her research for her upcoming book. Apparently, she is writing about artists who have full time jobs in other areas – mine being a marketing person in a financial/advertising industry. I’ll post my answers as a series of posts.
Her first question is: “Why is music important to you”
Music is important to me for several reasons. First, it is a big part of my identity, probably more than any of my other identities besides “Dad”. While I have built a 25 year career in media trading, I would say music is more my identity if for no other reason than I think I’m naturally more skilled at it than business or marketing.
I’ve also been playing and writing music for longer than any other activity in my life other than eating, breathing or sleeping. I believe that I offer something through my music that is much rarer than any skills I possess as a marketer or businessman. The instrument I play – trombone – is less commonly played than most other instruments, and the fact that I play the alto trombone instead of the common tenor trombone makes my choice of instrument even more rare. There is only one other person I know of that plays the alto more than as simply a novelty. Add to that, my particular style of playing, and the result is a very unique endeavor that has shaped a big part of my life.
Another reason music is important is because, like other musicians, I have developed my aesthetic sense to a high degree – both orally and visually. Most musicians hear things others don’t. I have also used my aesthetic sense as a visual designer, which has been important to me as a marketer who, as a part of my job, designs marketing documents (books, web pages, signage, etc.).