Why I love FAWM and 50/90 so much

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There is something deliriously exciting about getting to listen to fresh music and getting to interact with the musicians directly, as we do here. I am a big fan of so many of you. Goodness. If I only had the money and time, I'd be getting a whole load of you down here for a massive 50/90 Live concert event.

I don't want to start listing all of you that I'm a huge fan of but know that I appreciate SO MANY of you and I stand in awe of your songwriting and performances. You all do crazy-cool things and I'm glad, in whatever small way, to get to know you through this!

I agree @metalfoot, it is quite a privilege to be involved here. Regarding live concert, I think the best we can hope for are multiple F.A.W.M. over parties scattered here and there. Although something on the level of Lollapalooza would be pretty dreamy!

They did great things for my songwriting. I never feel stuck anymore since I first joined in 2008.

I've learned how to FINISH something since I started doing this. No more 9 month songs. Or year-and-a-half songs.

I'm with you @standup It used to take me months and months to finish a song. And it made me anxious. That's all gone now! Smile

And to loop back to my original post-- I really do feel like the kid in the candy store around here. Such talented people to hang about with. Maybe some of the talent will rub off on me! Biggrin

You could rub my Buddha belly, if you'd like.

I learned to enjoy making music again, and all the supportive and constructive comments helped me growing enough self confidence to present songs I have written alone to other people.

Totally agree. I've made a lot of good friends by taking part. Listening to their music and interacting with them has taught me an immense amount about songriting, recording, and music in general. And my abilities have improved out of all recognition from what they were like when I first signed up. FAWM and 50/90 are amazing, and so are the people who take part!

The focus is on the music, --that really is such a simple thing, but what makes it.

-- Ditto on the above, by others.

This place(s) renewed my zero faith in online group music communities. One can "fake" it for a little while, but not 2+ years (and ++ beyond that).

One may have to think about this next one, but, --for all the people who dislike me :), (so to speak), thank you for leaving me the hell alone, and vise versa, -- you're welcome too Wink LOL...! Most importantly, ironic to say?, -- you (we/I) of that, are the most loved ones here!. -- us, all are that.
-- It's what makes this all possible.

The knowledgebase here is beyond compare, and no one seems to hold back on that for any of the others here asking authentically for help. And, if things go "sideways"... wait a day... and just proceed, (chances are, no one noticed anyway). It's hard to ask for more than that.
-- We need to make sure we all get out of our "heads", online, offline, as a habit. I think that happens well here, --self evident.

So, thank you for all the greatness here, and its affect it's had on me. A plant can grow anywhere, but, a bit more sun, food and water... well, all the better!

So, derUgo Fool

Oh so many reasons I love FAWM and 50/90 so much!

As many of you know I'm a music educator, but I didn't follow a traditional path to it. I spent a lot of time in rock bands, playing (and often hosting) open mics, traveling the U.S. as a long haul truck driver and writing songs from the sleeper berth... I often wanted to be a jazzer, but never quite got to that virtuoso improviser level. I often wanted to play symphonic music but never developed the sight reading chops. I often wanted to tour, but never really had the ambition or the charisma for it. I always wanted to make records, but never cared for the gear and expense. When home recording equipment finally became simple and affordable in the 90's and 00's I started making records all the time, but had very few people to share them with. Discovering FAWM and 50/90 in 2010 was like discovering the place I belong. I could make home recordings, and share them with people who would listen. And, best of all, the songs (good, bad, and ugly) would only stick around for a year and then disappear. Like jazz. Never the same way twice. Next time around I can reinvent myself, take on a new challenge, try a new concept... It's a sandbox... a playground... and one where I feel at home. I'm no longer a slave to perfectionism, and I have I wonderful audience that gives a meaning and purpose to the process of creating which I love.

Regarding this awesome community - it's getting close to the time of year when people like to visit Florida (in a few weeks, when hurricane season is over) and my friend @AndyGetch and I co-host the musical performances at our local outdoor market. Should you find yourself near Fort Myers on a Saturday morning, you're welcome to join us!
I started with FAWM, joined 50/90 the following year, and I love both. I like how in 50/90 you can have periods of inactivity and then jump right in. This year, I had to take off a few days to get a computer fixed, a week and a half for a yoga training, and a week for Hurricane Irma. Yet I was still able to reach 50, and I feel a burst of inspiration right now on this first day of fall.
During this home stretch, it helps that it seems like there are still enough folks around to keep the site interesting and engaging. I'm going to commit right here to sticking around after Oct 1 to listen and comment - I'm usually one of the last to leave.

Because it's fun. Also it is one of the few places where people listen to my haphazard experiments combined with fair to middling recording and performance skills and still find something supportive and encouraging to say about them. Further that here others are willing to allow me to share that middling skill combination with their songs.

It's cool to have other people around who write songs. Four months of the year I have you all to ... Steal inspiration from Smile

sph's picture

It showed me that it is possible for me to write songs. Like Izaak said: it's a playground with valuable feedback. There's so much to discover and be part of.

I've had some time this morning (as I wait for an important package that has to be signed for) to read the forums, and I've noticed some negative comments about 50/90. So I thought I'd bump this thread.
I get that it's a long challenge, and that interest in it comes and goes (and often goes away for good for many folks). And I get that some people might not be pleased with the number of comments they get, or that there seem to be cliques, etc. And I get that instead of quietly going away and moving onto something they enjoy, some people feel they have to get a few gripes out of their system.
And of course, life gets in the way - you have to take care of priorities like earning your keep and providing for your family. I happen to have a lifestyle that allows me to be productive both in and out of 50/90 - it's not luck or being blessed; I earned it, and I have a super supportive wife and daughter.
But here it is, three days before the challenge ends, and there are still enough folks around to keep it interesting. Also, I bet some others who are still here are feeling, like I am, one last burst of inspiration. I love, love, love FAWM - and without it I would not have discovered 50/90, of course - but I feel like I sort of limped to the finish line last FAWM, and I feel awfully good right now.
50/90 isn't for everyone - nor is FAWM. I have interacted and worked with hundreds of local musicians in the years that I've been doing these challenges, and I have gotten a few to try them. But only my good friend @AndyGetch and I are still doing it (and going strong!). I'd rather hang out with creative and intense online friends than the locals who labor over the same original song for weeks or even months, or who play the same tired cover songs.
So I guess I just got a few gripes out of my system, too - but here I am, still plugging away.

What @Chip Withrow said. As opposed to the majority of people in the world who live to survive or follow, we are part of a minority who live to create. Of that minority of creative driven people, we are by my observation a very small percentage yet again that create with prolific abandon. Most do not sign up for a marathon. Many who sign up do not even start. Many that start do not finish. I am so very glad we find fellow marathon songwriters, kindred spirits, our tribe, whatever you would like to call our community, here, in this place.

Life majorly got in the way this summer, yet I know I have given my inner artist a boost by creating what little I did. This lovely site (and FAWM) lets me share my silliness, my more serious side, and even my slightly naughty (though really mostly innocent) side. People here take me as I am. I love the focus on the creativity and the encouragement for each person to get a little better and get one more song born. Life has slowed slightly so I'm hoping to wrap up a few songs, and then get more listening/commenting done! I love the fresh music. This is my seventh year taking part and I treasure the connections made.

-- What andy said chip said he said. Smile

Said well.

(Ever notice after a few good discussions/arguments/exchanges, it gets better and more relevant, --if you stay.)

-- And:

If one puts in the time "here" and actually reads and thinks about what others say, ~everyone~ here, longitudinally, then, -- their comments have much more meaning. It's like any life relationship that forms over time. One may even discover that people they thought they didn't appear to be "like", they are. When one gives up conversation, they forfeit their "control", their life conversations, their authentic benefit to self and others.

I "know" folks here, who if ever "comment" on a song, or otherwise, anyone's song/thread, their content became for me, very specific with weight, --over time.

Any place "today", that "this" can/may occur, as group think, over time, is a place to consider.