I’m looking at a Dropbox directory where I keep some of my spreadsheet plans for promoting this new album, and note that the first version of these dates back to late 2019. That may not seem like so big a deal.
But then I start going back and back, looking at old concepts for album cover ideas, first notes on what I was thinking thematically for this upcoming collection… eventually I find myself all the way back to around 2014 or so. (Further back – like 2008, when I was under a recording contract – if I really want to trace the initial mentions of “The Art of Tactful Procrastination”).
This last 6+ years has been a whirlwind. Two children, struggling initially to find work or a job in a very dry Nashville film industry (not so dry anymore), rubbing elbows with celebrities, changing diapers (not the celebrities’), driving Uber (which I actually quite enjoyed and still do from time to time), producing and directing a television pilot, editing a feature documentary film on Kentucky Bourbon, pandemicking, singing vocal takes over and over, joining a rock band, taking babies and toddlers to and from daycare and/or school, having hernia surgery, cuddling with my children, going through more than one mixing engineer, filming pieces for future music video releases…
Ah, yes! Videos! When I look back through some of the clips and see their “created” dates, they are pretty much all stamped before the pandemic began. I don’t think I filmed anything once COVID took off. I watch them and think, “you had no idea what was coming up” (in at least one or two cases, within a week of when I was filming).
In some strange ways, it’s rather surreal to look at these things and know what I didn’t know then. I had no idea how the world was about to change. Or for how long. You tell yourself it won’t be forever, but you really don’t know.
Similarly, when you work on a project that takes this long (for reasons why, see the list of things above… and that’s a very truncated list), you begin to think it’s never going to end. Deep down you know that the current state of that project (whatever it may be) is not the way it’s always going to be. At some point, it will be done.
Two big things are happening tomorrow. Things I knew would happen but at certain points had a hard time believing.
Tomorrow, the first official trailer for the new album is released. Much like the Announcement Teaser I did last month, it’s full of things I had filmed before the pandemic began. Snapshots of this creative sphere couldn’t possibly foresee the dramatic changes heading its way. It’s one of many promotional activities that I’ve had written down on various charts and spreadsheets now for years.
And it’s coming out tomorrow!
Additionally, I finally announce the release date of The Art of Tactful Procrastination and – with it – offer it up for pre-order. By the time the album is out, it will have been just over 7 years since I’d begun the first demos.
But it is done. And it is coming out.
There’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Whether or not you believe it’s there, or have otherwise given up on it, doesn’t change the fact that it’s there. Sometimes it’s a long tunnel. Sometimes it’s a short one that slogs on seemingly forever. Sometimes it’s deep and dark and you don’t know which way is which.
Nonetheless, if you keep moving forward, stomp (sometimes stumble) through the slog, and remain determined, patient, and persistent, you won’t be stopped.