The response I got from my piece about using Connect as an artist was overwhelmingly, unexpectedly positive, including a truly surprising email from Trent Reznor, who is not only a source of inspiration for me in how I want to approach my music and the way I treat my audience, but also an executive at Apple with the ability to make a real difference. I’ve heard positive things from people from the music industry and the technology industry, and it’s cool to think that my sitting between these two worlds might help both sides understand each other a little better.
Still, I did get one email from a guy who took issue with me referring to myself as an artist:
With all due respect, self-proclaiming ‘artists’ are just that –
self-proclaiming. Kindly refrain from calling yourself an ‘artist’.
The guy goes on for another four paragraphs. He ends his email with “Respectfully”.
I simply replied with a note that, in the music industry, “artist” refers to the performer — a catch-all term for a solo artist or a primary band member performing a song, as opposed to a producer, songwriter, session worker, or whatever. Which is true, and that’s the meaning I intended when I wrote it.
But fuck that. Music is art, and someone who makes art is an artist. More importantly: who sits around waiting for labels to be bestowed upon them? I get to decide who and what I am.