It’s no secret that music is a huge part of our culture and society. Not only for our current day and age, but historically as well. In a unique way, music is one of the most perfect accounts of history, as it shifts depending on the state of society, or in many cases, it can also shift society in new directions. It’s a powerful tool for so many things; to uplift, to inspire, to raise awareness, to express frustration, to celebrate – there is nothing that happens in our lives for which music cannot somehow relate. Music has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I learned it from a young age, and have played instruments my whole life. As I grew older, it went from something that I did with my life, to something that is a part of my life. I have, as I’m sure many of you do as well, specific types of songs I like to listen to in particular times of my life. It’s not something I claim to do in any professional way, but it’s something that is deeply rooted in who I am. A few weeks ago I asked myself a question. “Why Music?”
As many of you may know, lots of my work with ZULUECHO Initiative revolves around projects I do with musicians, DJ’s and other types of creative artists, but I have gravitated towards music. In fact, many “Friends of ZULUECHO” are in the music industry and most of my released work has some relation to music. Whether a video that is edited to match the rhythm of a song, or working with an artist to make a film, music video, or recap video, music has found it’s way into almost everything that I do. In fact, I’m listening to music right now. But why? Why have I used musical talent to help spread a message of positivity? Why have I used music as a catalyst to shift mindsets, inspire change, and empower people to follow their passion? I constantly share new artists, and street performers on my social media accounts… why? The answer to this question relates not only to my own personal interests, but to the larger purpose behind ZULUECHO Initiative’s mission – to inspire and empower people to follow their passions in life. Music is no easy career path. One has to be dedicated, passionate, patient, and ultimately willing to risk failure in order to really get one’s name out there. In a unique way, music IS the mission behind ZULUECHO Initiative. As you see artists grow you can truly follow how they are building themselves up to share with the world a bit of what makes them their own. A bit of their passion with the world, in the hopes that it resonates with somebody.
This to me is a beautiful phenomenon. This is why I constantly share street performers, as the contagiousness of their passion is evident not only in their performances, but in the crowds of people that stop their lives for 2-3 minutes to enjoy that passion. To share in the passion of one person, to elevate their own happiness. Then people start to sing along, losing all sense of individualism and turning into a unique group of people who lead completely different lives, yet share that moment forever. That is truly special. That is the power of following your passion, and that is why I celebrate music through so much of my work. It brings people together for no other reason than to unify them through passion. When you’re down and feeling alone, you’ll find a song, and that song will have affected somebody else the same way it has affected you. You may not know it, but music has this incredible ability to unify people who are not even in the same place. This is a concept that fascinates me, as the root of it, is passion. I am constantly amazed by the power that music has to relocate your mind. Music has the ability to transform the space you physically occupy into the space your mind wants you to occupy. This characteristic of music, in my opinion, comes from it’s nature as a result of passion. It’s an expression of somebody’s mind, using their talent to share with the world something of their own. Something others can relate to and use to navigate through their own lives.
I’ve spoken in previous articles about the importance of “the process” and music might be the best example of how process is in fact what makes it so special. So much of the work I do is embedded in a desire to celebrate the process of artists as they learn their craft, build their fan base, and take a chance on the world to share something of their own. This past summer I was fortunate enough to work with several musicians, DJ’s, and other entrepreneurs in the music industry to help show the world the importance of falling in love with the process, and the amazing things that happen when you do. MAR1’s debut festival performance at Firefly Music festival was an experience I’ll never forget. His growth from making remixes in High-School to performing at a festival with other artists like Kygo, ZEDD, 3LAU and many others, is a direct result of his passion. Similarly, Anthony Obas’ event “The Meetup” which brought young artists together to network and share experiences showed me the incredible ways that sharing stories enhances everyone’s ability to follow their passion. Filming Lucas Brooks’ first music video was also a touching experience as it was his leap from writing music, to sharing music. Music has this power to inspire, not only because of its content, but because of its process.
I want to leave you with two videos I made in the last couple of months of two street performers. Two artists that captured my attention before I could even see them, because of how many people were standing around listening to their incredible performances. This kind of passion is something I will always try to celebrate. That is the ZULUECHO Lifestyle Initiative
Believe in the power of your dreams…. #zuluechoinitiative