I’ve been struggling a lot with singing on key. Not terribly, and rarely enough that anyone who isn’t super musical can tell, but I still know. And, I know that I’m doing it technically wrong.

Recently I performed, and I knew that I started a little off. There was no going back, it wasn’t bad enough to start over, so I tried to salvage what I could. You know what happened next? The same as always. People came up and told me it was great. Often I get frustrated by that, and I know some other musicians who get the same thing. I mean, “We know that it wasn’t how it was supposed to be, and we can do so much better. Stop telling us it was good.” However, I realized something after that performance that makes things a bit easier. It’s something almost all musicians know, but slowly forget over time.

IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU. My performance that I mentioned was at an organization called Olivia’s Gift. I was singing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer because it was one of the resident’s favorite songs. Who freaking cares if I’m a little bit off? If people liked it, then it was kind of irrelevant.

That’s not to say key, etc., doesn’t matter. But, it’s important to remember why you make the music. Some people play just for the fun of it. That’s okay too. There are certainly some things I’ve learned just out of having fun. But, I often play for people. I play to inspire them, tell a story, or make them think. If you’re going to play for people it’s important to remember why you’re doing it.