Hang Out With Musicians Who Are Better Than You

Yes, there are musicians who are better than you, I don’t care who you are.

photo via Daily Beast

Mariah Carey would probably say there are better singers than her.

Jimi Hendrix probably thought there were better guitarists than him.

John Bonham surely respected other drummers and tried to learn from them.

So can you. And so can I.

For the past year or so, I’ve been making music with friends who are way better than me at their instruments. They make me want to get better.

And that’s what I need — a drive to become a better musician.

I don’t want to be complacent. It’s easy to get too comfortable with my skill level.

It’s like the gap that Ira Glass talks about — the gap between where we are and where we want to be. And how that gap makes us get better.

“It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions,” Glass says. “…It’s going to take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.”

So for your own good, hang out with musicians who are better than you.

If you’re looking to keep your creative gene working, check out Austin Kleon’s little book Steal Like An Artist. It’s one of my favorites. I’ve read it like a dozen times.

This Is What Happens When You Hate Musicians Who Are Better Than You

Have you ever heard someone say, “I started hating this person and, man, it’s making my life so much better!”?

Don't Hate Musicians Who Are Better Than You

If you have, you’re probably friends with a sociopath.

If you haven’t, you’re like the rest of us.

There’s a good reason you don’t hear musicians (or people in general) talk like this — because hate and jealousy never lead to anything good.

It’s easy to be jealous of another musician who’s more successful than you, or better at songwriting, playing their instrument, or whatever.

But don’t give in to that jealousy — it will wreak havoc on your musical career (and possibly your soul).

And by jealousy, I don’t mean a healthy acknowledgment of the gap between you and another musician.

I mean hateful jealousy. Wanting what another musician has.

So here are two things that will probably happen if you hate other musicians who are better than you.

You’ll be miserable

If you’re consumed with jealousy, you’ll be void of happiness.

You’ll see all the skills that you don’t have. You’ll be frustrated that you lack something.

Tell me how jealousy benefits your happiness at all.

Your music career will suffer

Because you’ll be focused on another musician, you may forget about yourself and your music.

Don’t try to be another musician. Focus on what kind of musician you want to be.

Put on those blinders and get to work on yourself and your craft.

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