So last night, I got the chance to open for Tyler Hilton. I had such a great time, and I felt like I needed to share something with the world… 😛
First off, I appreciate Tyler, because although he’s had more success than most people our age, he is still grounded, and treats people with respect. There’s no “ego” or “looking down” on others, and it’s obvious from how kind and gracious he is with his fans. I hope I can mirror that on my own musical journey!
Second, let’s talk about what it takes to make it in music. You must be DETERMINED. Here’s what happened last night so I could get to the show.
- I tried to change my flight from Fort Wayne to LAX, but it was a no go. Delta has a 150 dollar policy to change flights, but nothing that would actually get me there on time. THEN when I asked the lady at the counter how much it would take, she told me $690. (Whoa… if I had that, I’d be printing off 500 copies of my last album… so people don’t need to buy my chicken scratch-boot legged version…)
- I couldn’t take the train, because the timing was off when I was landing at LAX. I literally got in to LA at 5:45.
- It took 30 minutes to get my bags, and then another 15 to get to the rental car place so I could go straight from LAX and try to beat the traffic. It is now 6:45, and I have just showed up at National Rental Car. I already have the reservation, so I figure, I can just grab the car and go. INCORRECT. I don’t have a straight credit card, and because I’m not flying anywhere or have proof of a “return flight” Their policy states that I can’t use a “check card” even if it has a visa logo… This is a STUPID policy, but I accept it.
- I call my mom to ask to use her credit card, hand the lady the phone, but the lady says, “I can’t take it over the phone… I have to see it. You need to have her drive here.” I tell my mom I’ll call her back. Look the lady square in the eye and say, “I’m not from here. There is no credit card that I can do that. My mom lives in San Jose. Please tell your manager that this is stupid, and you just wasted a half hour of my time.”
- I run outside in a panic. It sinks in that it’s 7:00 and I’m not going to make it to the show. (2 hour drive from LA to SD on a GOOD day… and the show starts at 9:00.) I stop and say, “SHUTUP JOSH, YOU CAN DO THIS. IF ANYONE CAN FIND AWAY, IT’S YOU, CAUSE YOU’RE STUPID CRAZY, AND YOU WILL MAKE IT HAPPEN.”
- Just then, I look over and see a cab driver. I throw my stuff in his car, and say, “Can you drive me to Sherman Oaks?” He agrees, and Although it cost me $58 and we hit heavy traffic on the 405, we get to my pad at 7:40.
- I run upstairs throw my bag in the house, grab the keys to my car, race downstairs, and get on the freeway. (Traffic…) It is now 8:00 ad I’m 2 hours away from San Diego…*On a good day… remember???
- I call Casey, one of my street team leaders, tell her that I’m driving 95 on the freeway because I can’t miss this show. I don’t have my cd’s so i need her to run to the store and grab them, and I’ll make bootleg copies backstage. She does it. SIDENOTE: I COULD NOT do what I do without friends/street team peeps like her or Kitty. They literally have saved my ass on many occasions, and no matter what, they will always be my best friends, and my source of strength.
- it’s 9:00. I’ve driven to Oceanside, and have only encountered one close call with a police officer. (I’m literally scanning every car in front of me and behind me for cop cars… BUT i know that even if I get pulled over, I HAVE to take the hit. It’s just a risk that I needed to take.) I call Lou at Lestats to see if they’ve started the show yet— No answer. I figure he’ll call me back, cause I’m always an hour early to shows. I keep going.
- At the tip of Oceanside, my car gas light goes “BING”… shoot… i’m about 40 miles out, and my car wants gas… I pray, “Dear Jesus… I promise you I will write 2 or 3 worship songs if you help me here…” (Yes… I really did that…)
- at 9:15, Lou calls me. I’ve made it to Solana Beach. Savannah has just started playing, but is only playing 4 songs. I say, “LOU… I’m pushing 95. I think i can make it… but if we can stall, please do so…” Lou agrees, and I call Casey. “Casey, I’m gonna pull up outside, can you grab my car and park it?” Casey agrees, and waits for me outside the venue.
- 9:40- 1 hour 40 minutes after I left Sherman Oaks, I arrive at Lestats. I grab my guitar, and RUN backstage. Meet Tyler Hilton. I tell him about my travel to get there, and his face is priceless. His dad is impressed with my Nascar skills. Savannah is on her last song. I tune my brand new guitar from Wechter, and literally hear everyone scream for Savannah. Lou comes back and says, “YOU MADE IT!”
- 9:45- I walk on stage and play the set.
Now I’m not saying this because I’m bragging, or because I’m telling you to speed. The reason I’m saying this, is because if you want to use the word “WINNING”, you have to understand that it’s not just being lucky, or having something handed to you. You have to take it. You have to fight for what you want. You can’t have any excuses. You just have to do it. Most people I know would have cancelled the show when they didn’t get the rental car at 7:00. But I wouldn’t take “no” for an answer. I don’t know where I got this quality from or even if it’s a quality, but I do know that I’m stubborn headed and my nickname in college soccer was “The Ox”. (Cause I’m the hardest worker my team captain new, and cause I’m wicked ugly….) 😛
So that was my night. 🙂 Played the show, met some GREAT people, and had a fantastic time. I’m playing at Lestats again tonight because a friend of mine was sick and who knows what opportunities to be crazy will come up tomorrow…. 🙂
Long story short. If you believe in yourself, then I believe in you. Somedays, that’s all you have. Things may be bad, but they won’t ALWAYS be bad. You can do this kid.
“Hold your own, know your name, and go your own way…” – Jason Mraz