Listen to Halsey

Music was never really present in my house growing up. I may have taken a year of drum and piano lessons when I was really young but I never learned to properly play an instrument or understand music theory. I only started to learn how to appreciate good music about two years ago when I decided to teach myself how to play the guitar. I’m not an expert by any means but I think I am getting there…

Although I can’t yet call myself a musician, I do consider myself an artist. I am a writer, painter and engineer, but those are just labels. Fundamentally, I am both a thinker and a doer. A lot of people are doers, but true thinkers are far more rare. To me, artistry starts with curiosity, curiosity breeds education, education breeds contemplation, contemplation breeds understanding, and understanding breeds truth. Once an artist has found his or her truth, all that is left is to share it – thats where the doing comes in. Thought gives execution purpose, and that, to me, is art.

As an artist, I appreciate other artists. In the case of music, I believe that there are three types: those that create, those that perform and those that do both. I gravitate toward those that do both. I appreciate artists who write, produce and perform THEIR music.  Halsey is one of those rare artists.

Both of the albums she has released to this point have been concept albums – her first, BADLANDS, creates and explores a post-apocalyptic wasteland, while her second, hopeless fountain kingdom, is a story told in the vein of Romeo and Juliet. Creating the best music is difficult enough without adding the complexity of maintaining a unifying theme throughout an album. She definitely did a better job of that the second time around and I am confident that the next album will be even better. Even if the music isn’t for you, I hope that you will appreciate the artistry.

As an auxiliary note – if you are an artist, create and share. You never know who will see your work, appreciate it and want to give you the opportunity to grow. Halsey started by posting covers on YouTube. Then, she posted her song “Ghost” on SoundCloud and got a record deal with Astralwerks as a result. Now, she has a #1 album in hopeless fountain kingdom. Anything can happen…