Unpopular Opinion

The first time I was interviewed on television I was super nervous. I had no idea how to prepare or what to expect. Then a friend suggested I do a media training session with someone they new who trained high profile corporate types to give interviews. So I did. At the time I’m not even sure I knew that media training was a thing, but it sounded like a good idea so I did it.

The first part of the session the media trainer talked about what to expect behind the scenes, and how to answer questions by segueing into whatever topic you want to talk about regardless if it has anything to do with the question being asked. Ever notice people interviewed on TV rarely answer the questions they are asked. The media trainer explained to me that this is so because even though many interviews appear casual and conversational, they are never ever, ever…NEVER a conversation. The person being interviewed is there for a purpose, having a nice polite conversation with the pretty interview lady is NOT one of them.

The second half of the session is what really blew my mind. The trainer wanted me to describe my business (Euphonic Sound Recording Studio), my clients (artists), and the services offered to artists. I gave him some specific answers and tried to paint a picture of a day on Euphonic Sound planet. He was unhappy with my answers. He kept probing and pushing me to go deeper. What was he looking for? After much back and forth and teeth pulling the media trainers face all of a sudden lit up. He said I know how you need to describe your business in one compelling sentence. He said, “You make dreams come true.”

He’s right I do make dreams come true. Artists write songs then they come to me because they need a producer, engineer, musical director, arranger or session musician. Sometimes they need me to to wear all of those hats at once. At the end of our project an audio recording of their songs has been produced. More than just a documentary recording mind you, we add layers and textures and lots of musical parts. When we mix and master more layers, textures, dynamics and dimensions are created. We are left with something that the artist could only previously dream about. The artists dream has been realized. Through my guidance, creativity and music production knowledge I actually help people make their dreams come true. Powerful.

I never thought what I did was so awesome and important to the people I work with. One media training session got me prepared for what to expect on a chaotic TV set, but it also kind of showed me what my purpose in life was. Heavy. Unexpected. I have been recommending media training to artists ever since. The process they put you through to prepare you for a media appearance may shed some light on why you do the things you do. Let me ask you a couple questions. Do you know what you are really doing with your life? Do you know why?

Media training begins with this. It begins with knowing yourself, really knowing yourself, and what it is you are doing with your time. Our shallow answer to these questions may sound like “I write songs, record, play shows, etc.” when more accurately our answers should be more like, “I probe the deepest depths of the human psyche, make observations on the human condition, present my findings through music and poetry, and connect with other humans so that they too can understand they are not alone under all the layers of confusion and pain. Through this I serve humanity by making life more bearable for others.”

The fast media byte answer to the long form version above my sound something like, “I ease the pain of others.” Doesn’t that sound more compelling and more important than “writing songs, recording, playing shows” ?

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