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Because Humor is Easier (on my Self Esteem)
Posted Feb 9, 2011 - 9:33:51

CIMG0057.jpgYesterday I was informed, effectively, that I looked down on people's "serious" projects. It was in the context of someone's band (which I actually didn't look down upon or actually belittle, but whatever), and I assume that it's because I have a history of writing comical music and have stated that I couldn't write serious music. Now, I've been composing more serious stuff lately (although I'm still working on funny songs too), but that's a development of the last year and a half.

In any case, what this person seems to have missed is the reason I said I couldn't write serious music: because I'd feel too self conscious doing so.

When you do a bad job writing or performing a comedic song, you can make excuses. If the musicianship is subpar, it's easily forgiven if you're funny. If you aren't funny, you can just apologize for not making someone laugh and try to get them with the next song. Frankly, humor is such a subjective thing, that if you're at least halfway clever someone is going to find it funny somewhere.

When you write something from the heart, you become vulnerable. Suddenly, if your timing on a note is off it isn't forgiven. Suddenly, if your choice of lyric is cliched it's no longer part of the humor. Suddenly, any criticism stops feeling like a problem with the song, but instead it feels like a problem with the artist.

I have a reputation for being outgoing, but most people who actually know me realize how self conscious I actually am about things I produce. In truth, I think most creators of any kind are. We're all suckers for praise and secretly have egos as fragile as glass. While ignoring criticism from people we don't know is easy, when it comes from our friends it's hard -- and when you're not famous nor popular, your friends make up most of your audience.

So while some people argue that comedy is harder to write, I will (to the end) argue that it is much easier on one's self esteem in the end. I don't look down on people who write "serious" works, in fact I admire their willingness to share - because I know exactly how hard that can be.
- Traegorn

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Trae, it sounds like you just have a hard time opening up. We can fix this. Now tell me about your childhood.
I got beat up a lot and spent time in therapy. Next question. :P
Well there is 1 song that you wrote that I kept listening to a lot because I'm terrible person that way.

Trae Dorn
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