post written by: Marc Chernoff

How You Write Your Best Music

Your Best Music

Musician One

I know a musician who hates material objects.  Everything he carries with him is a burden.  Besides the obvious problem of weight, most objects are also a connection to another place or person or time in his life.  And those connections, which beget other connections, hold him down.  They make it harder for him to breathe.

He needs just two things to feel free.  The first is psychological.  He needs to know that he can leave at any moment, from anywhere.  The second is material – the only material object he cares about.  His guitar.  Because it holds the keys to his heart and soul – the songs he’s written and carried with him all these years.  And the songs he has yet to write.

Musician Two

I know another musician who isn’t like that at all.  He feels burdened by the possibility of missing out – of not having the people and things in his life that help him make music.  Because without friends and family, and all the latest sounds, gadgets, and instruments, he can’t keep in touch.  He can’t breathe.

He also needs just two things to feel free.  The first is material.  A house filled with loving people and familiar things – all essential for keeping him connected and sane.  The second is psychological.  A temporary escape.  Because every now and then he feels like he needs some air.  So he escapes to his porch to think and be.

Best Music

Musician One writes his best music while breathing anywhere with his guitar.  Musician Two writes his best music while breathing at home on his porch.

How and where do you write your best music?  (Use ‘music’ as a metaphor for whatever your passion is.)

Photo by: Luigi Orru

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  • I’m definitely a musician one. Over the last few years, I’ve tried to simplify my life — to become one with myself and let go of the materialistic mentality. Tyler Durden said it best in Fight Club — “what you own ends up owning you.”

  • I find the best place for me to write my music to be whilst walking. I compose the music in my head without my instruments, and take a voice recorder with me so that I can sing the different parts and hum the tunes, and then when I go back to my house I figure out the notes and put them together.

    I like to be in the open air, and walking to see nature walk around me as the music forms around it.

    That’s me!

  • at my beloved home! :D

  • Definitely a musician one - I used to move every year and it made me feel free. Now that I have settled more and have more belongings, I am yearning for that freedom again, so I have started slowly getting rid of things again. It’s nice to have a home to go to, but maybe with more space in it. As with everyone, I am seeking balance…

  • I’m not entirely sure this is just about music. . . . There are so many things I can apply it to. Great post, Marc.

  • @Nate:

    You are correct. In this article, music is a metaphor for whatever your passion is.


  • hmmm
    i love to write articles after i come in contact with people and events, so i guess i fit in number 2

  • Great metaphor. I think my style is the second one.

    I enjoy the necessary material things like you mentioned and more importantly the connections; my friends, family, and work partners.

    Which one are you?

  • Hi Marc,

    Nice post my friend. Thanks for sharing

  • @Bryce:

    As long as Angel is riding shotgun, I feel at home wherever I am.

  • I am like Rachael, I write lyrics in my head while on long walks. I would never bring an ipod with me on these journeys. When you fill your brain with someone else’s music, the peaceful notes of your own life get drowned out. Thank you, Rachael for the wonderful description!

  • I like being with nature.
    Just sitting, hanging out with nature ^_^

  • I found that I was starting to be consumed by my material objects in my life. So as naturally as I bought them, I sold them. Quit my job, moved 1700 kms away from “home base” and went back to school. Most amazing experience I’ve ever done in life so far at age 27!

    Music can be made anywhere.

  • I think I fit with musician number one. I could be anywhere as long as I have a stringed musical instrument.

  • I’m Musician Three: I write while stoned. Nothing matters, you can be whatever or wherever. Marijuana is the equivalent of a sexual aphrodisiac for music. It really works for me.

  • Just found your site through a friend… This particular entry would have been great for my late husband, Robert. He was a acoustic guitar player that was always playing his own unique & haunting melodies-Musician One is who he was…

    & if anyone is asking, he was a full-blooded Chippewa Indian who was a Pastorial Musician, taught music to Native American youth & was a youth mentor, who had a passion for the outdoors & riding his bicycle… & who sadly passed away @ the age of 48 while on a Native American youth camp retreat just weeks before he was to start his Masters classes to become a teacher.

    Life in its own way sux a@* but its what you are willing to do to make it interesting & worthwhile while you are living each moment =)

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