Can't get excited about music anymore

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Quitty, Sep 7, 2016.

  1. Quitty

    Quitty Hates 'mojo'

    Messages:
    1,368
    Likes Received:
    127
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Location:
    Germany
    For the past decade, if you asked me to describe myself, "musician" would have been the first word to come out of my mouth.
    I've played live, recorded albums, wrote my own stuff, worked in live sound and production, dabbled in DSP and built MIDI controllers. It's a huge part of who i am.

    But for a while now, music doesn't have the same allure it used to. I slowly stopped listening to music. I'm big on short youtube videos, but can't keep focused for a whole album.
    I started tinkering with my sound much more than i was actually playing. I started posting less on SSO. Couldn't write anything decent and couldn't play for more than an hour straight.

    The final nail in the coffin came somewhere between my last band breaking up and my new job.
    Now, my band has been on the brink for years now so that was always around the corner and my job, well, it's fantastic. I get paid well to think, which is awesome.

    I just - for lack of less dramatic phrasing - don't really know who i am anymore.
    Looking at myself this past year, i'd think i was the most boring person ever.
    Feck, i don't want to be a developer. I mean, i love working in that field, but it feels like i was so much more of a person when i could say i'm a guitarist.

    It's silly, it's whiny and i feel old.

    So, c'mon. Share your sob stories.
    Did any of you get bored only to find, later on, that the magic's back?
     
    bostjan and Noxon like this.
  2. russmuller

    russmuller Cramblin' Contributor

    Messages:
    1,659
    Likes Received:
    145
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2012
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    Dude, SO MUCH THIS!

    I haven't stopped listening to music, but I used to be gung-ho about listening to new music and now I'm just not motivated to. I've got a long list of bands that people have told me I should check out. Hell, there are 3 new albums out from some of my favorite bands this year that I haven't even bothered to listen to yet.

    I was in a band and did a stint touring, but that crashed and burned. I decided I didn't want to try to make a living that way, but ever since I've been such a slacker with my playing and writing. My chops are about 80% of what they were, but I'm just not inspired to write stuff. Or when I am, they're just fragments and ideas. There's no drive or inspiration to form them into real songs. I don't finish anything.

    I went back to school and earned a BS, so that really diverted my focus away. I filled the hole by spending money on gear and chasing tone, which is definitely fun, but to what end? I don't even know.

    Sometimes the fire ignites again, especially when there's a specific goal that I'm aiming for. Honestly, I just keep hoping I'll meet my music-writing soulmate where we can feed off each other's ideas. That would be really exciting, but I'm either too busy or too lazy to put in the effort of trying to get a band together. Meh...
     
  3. High Plains Drifter

    High Plains Drifter SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    2,235
    Likes Received:
    1,504
    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2015
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    My constant thought reading thru your post was "I wonder how old this person is?"

    I'm hitting mid 40's this year. Music ( in one capacity or another) was always a huge part of who I was. From a very early age into my teens and twenties, I was constantly dabbling in creating, absorbing, performing, etc. I couldn't go a day without playing or listening to something. I went thru phases as well.... trendy, alternative, rock, blues, metal... even country and rap as I got older.

    But at some point into my 30's, a lot of the passion faded. I played leas and less and I even found myself listening leas and less. It was noticeable to the point of being concerning... again, music was part of who I was. Like you, I also faced a phase where I sincerely felt lost in regards to my own identity. Nothing was appealing, I didn't care to write or play and I had no enthusiasm when it came to new bands, songs, albums, concerts, etc.

    Around that time however, I ended a long-term relationship, moved, got into a new career, and basically started my life over again in a lot of ways. I'd also like to mention that throughout my 30's, I lost some very influential people in my life... all my grandparents and my own parents all died. I say that because I feel as if maybe that was my "nail in the coffin". Essentially I became much more saddened, empty/ lonely, and disenchanted with life in general.

    But as things settled down and I began to come to terms with my life, where I was at, and the things that had helped to create my sadness/ lifelessness... I was [for lack of a better expression] kind of re-born. The involuntary hiatus that I had been on for some years gradually fell away and I sort of feel like I wanted to taste life again. I didn't force it. Rather, it gradually seeped back into me... and with new found appreciation for my own life, new friendships, acceptance of all that I had lost, music once again presented itself in whatever capacity that I wanted... whether I was happy, sad, angry, anxious, confused.... bands that I had never heard of began to emerge from everywhere, old songs suddenly had new meanings, and I found myself exploring and discovering new genres, as well as allowing myself to feel the music again.

    That's where I'm at and it's still going strong. My heart and soul are deeply rooted in music and I guess it's just who I am. Just that there were times where I left it behind. We change, as does the world around us. Music may not always be what it once was and it may be something that we fall out of touch with at times... but music will always be here waiting for us to take hold of us again.

    I genuinely hope that you find it again someday. It's so wonderful in so many aspects and it's always here for us whenever we want it or need it to be. Take care and I hope this helps just a tiny bit.
     
  4. Demiurge

    Demiurge Intrepid Jackass

    Messages:
    4,440
    Likes Received:
    1,119
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2005
    Location:
    Worcester, MA
    This has happened to me in waves. There are multiple reasons, which of course just increases the chances of there being something in the way. Sometimes it's depression, where I can sit next to my guitar for hours while watching Netflix and never pluck a note. More often it's exhaustion: after work, working-out, making dinner, and cleaning-up there is seldom the energy to be like, "Let's work on some riffs and lyrics!" or "I want to go to this show downtown!" or "I'll check-out this band I heard of instead of playing the same-old stuff!".
     
  5. extendedsolo

    extendedsolo SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    530
    Likes Received:
    14
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2014
    Location:
    WISCONSIN
    I'm going to echo the question; how old are you?

    Personally I think that everything in your life ebbs and flows. Your passions are never in a constant state of being cranked to the max. I used to be REALLY into running for 7 or 8 years. I would plan my work outs for like 4 or 5 months at a time and have goal races. Everything took a back seat to it. Had to eat right, go to bed early, wake up early and get my run in before anything. Then I got kind of injured and the passion has faded. I still like it and do it most days, but not to the extent that it felt like ALL I wanted to do. That's fine. I wondered for a long time if I was depressed or something. This thing I used to care SO much about is a struggle some days now. I've just learned, from talking with others, that it's just how life goes. I've come to terms with the thought that I may NEVER love running that much again. But it's possible I do. I just want to explore other things right now that I couldn't when I devoted so much time to running. Talk to people with a passion for something, older people! I know so many guys out there that used to have certain hobbies and then dropped it and started a new one! I'm not saying you will not like music anymore, but maybe just some time away and try to find that fire again. Maybe you go and like another kind of music? A new instrument? Maybe this really is the end for you? (unlikely because otherwise you wouldn't be posting about it). Try something new, get out of that rut.

    My own personal experience is that I was obsessed with music and guitar playing for the first 3 years I played. I was active in being in a band and I thought it was the path for me. I just knew deep down it wasn't, and that it was a hobby. In college and post grad school I would play if I had the time or a specific goal, but it was never something I felt like I had to do everyday. I fell out of love with guitar playing for 5 years up until about 4 years ago and now it's back with a vengeance. I would say I'm even MORE into it now. I've been taking private lessons for like 2 years and just enrolled in a class at the local conservatory. I've also gone from playing mostly metal to studying jazz. It's such a breath of fresh air to me. I'm not saying you have to study jazz, but maybe get into pop music. Write pop songs! Get into classical, flamenco. It just opened my eyes to how many great musicians are out there and how much great MUSIC is out there. I almost never go to metal shows anymore, but rather anything but. Find what made you want to get into it to begin with. That's what I've done. I'm completely aware that I may not feel this way forever though either. Yes I'll always love music, but maybe one day I'll see no need to pick up a guitar ever again? You never know. I might get really big into astronomy or something.

    I saw jesse cook at a masterclass a few years ago and he alluded to this very point. He said that there was a time in his life where he barely played at all and that he was glad he got it out of the way early in his life. I just saw Al Di Meola do a masterclass and he implied the same. He said he was REALLY into trading stocks and was super excited that he would never have to tour again. Now he is touring and having a good time though.

    My point overall is that, just accept that you feel this way now and that there isn't anything wrong with it. Also realize at the same time that you probably won't feel this way forever either.
     
  6. extendedsolo

    extendedsolo SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    530
    Likes Received:
    14
    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2014
    Location:
    WISCONSIN
    Don't feel bad, this is 90% of the guitar players on the internet.
     
  7. Noxon

    Noxon Is a Lurker

    Messages:
    1,124
    Likes Received:
    182
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2012
    Location:
    Southern California
    I can totally relate to what you guys are posting. I am kind of going through one of those phases now where I have zero interest in guitar/metal/music in general. I just can't get into anything anymore. Lately, I feel I play guitar not because I really want to, but because I have just been conditioned to do so over the past 25+ years I've played.
     
  8. buriedoutback

    buriedoutback SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    510
    Likes Received:
    187
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2015
    Location:
    North Bay, ON
    What reinvigorated me was A)
    becoming more involved in recording/mixing to the point where I built my own home studio.

    Where I live, bands stagnate and people loose interest quickly. There aren't any decent studios around (that I'm aware of) and so bands either produce no recorded material, or produce poorly recorded material. IMO it was prohibitively expensive to get a decent record done, so bands play the same material for a couple years then fade away.

    I'm still learning how to record/mix but I have found a whole new appreciation and excitement in music. I also do our music videos/live videos/photography. I get to spend my free time developing my skills on my (bands) material. Its really fun and not really expensive to get started. Reaper + Interface and free VSTs. I've also started re-mixing/recording my friends music/bands.

    B)
    New Gear! I found the guitar tone that excited me again!

    I've been through tube amps > amp modelling and back again. I finally found the tone I've been looking for, the volume I require and the 'feeling' that makes me happy.

    I was at the point where I was pissed off all the time I played. I wasn't enjoying it as much as I could have been. People say that the audience can't tell, but I could.

    fyi: I now use my Line 6 HD500 for recording at home (which I feel it does very well) and I found a smoking deal on a Mesa Triple Rec and Mesa oversized 412.
    I go tuner > tube screamer (modded marshall guvnor ) > ISP gate and then I have a 7Band eq (danelectro fish n chips) > chorus (danelectro) > lofi pedal (ibanez) in the loop.
    Once I figured out how to properly tweak the triple rec, my tone became a wall of mids and sounds really thick and 'crushing'. I get compliments on it all the time :)

    TLDR: Try to learn a different facet of music (live sound, recording, luthiery, etc) and/or try some out new gear (borrow, trade, buy, sell).

    ps. I was also very let-down by the new releases of several of my favorite bands over the last couple years. I actually started going back and listening to older stuff that I stopped listening to (like pantera), and have found some new inspiration there!

    pps. music is not my job, its my hobby.
    Cheers
     
  9. Konfyouzd

    Konfyouzd has left the building

    Messages:
    23,475
    Likes Received:
    2,080
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2009
    :lol:

    The topic of this thread is why I'm [back] on SSO. Haven't been feeling it for months. I kinda just said screw it and went with it. I've quit for several years before only to come back way more into. I'm kinda starting to miss it now.

    The same can happen w ppl too though. See too much of a person and suddenly you start getting tired of seeing that person no matter how much you like them.

    After some time away now you miss them and seeing them becomes exciting again.
     
  10. Vrollin

    Vrollin SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    1,450
    Likes Received:
    137
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2013
    Location:
    Australia
    We all do it, I didn't pick up a guitar for 5 years at one stage, between lack of motivation and the journey of joining the army and moving everywhere it was just never on the radar. When I got back into it all I could think about was putting a guitar in my hands. It comes, it goes, it comes again. I wouldn't stress, you'll find your passion again! I still have days or weeks where I lose motivation, even with all the sweetest bits of kit on hand, but it always comes back again!
     
  11. bpprox22

    bpprox22 String Breaker

    Messages:
    421
    Likes Received:
    114
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2014
    Location:
    Warren, OH
    I took a long time off of guitar back in high school after my band broke up. I'm out of college now and I didn't start playing again until a little over a year ago. Playing with other great guitarists is what really got me interested again. When I first learned guitar I didn't appreciate it as much as I do now. There was a ton of wasted time that I could've spent becoming a great guitarist. Now, I hope I never lose that interest for so long again.
     
  12. Quitty

    Quitty Hates 'mojo'

    Messages:
    1,368
    Likes Received:
    127
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Location:
    Germany
    I'll be 29 soon.

    Hearing you guys getting out and back in is reassuring. I know it's time to let go and let things play out, but it's like that limbo you put yourself into during college exams, when you're too spent to study but feel too guilty to do anything else.

    Feels like i don't know to what end i'm doing all i'm doing.
    Eh. One-third-of-life crisis.
     
  13. tedtan

    tedtan SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    4,507
    Likes Received:
    1,001
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2009
    Location:
    Never Neverland
    Like everyone says, don't be afraid to take a break for a while if need be. You'll either return with more drive or you'll find out you don't miss it and move on to other things. Either way, you win.


    I was wondering where you went.

    Come to think of it, I haven't seen Asher around here in a while, either.
     
  14. PunkBillCarson

    PunkBillCarson SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    1,590
    Likes Received:
    985
    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2013
    Location:
    Paragould, AR
    I think I kind of feel where you're coming from on this. It wasn't long ago that at tax time, I bought a 6505+ and an Avatar 2x12 with a Governor and Swamp Thang. I was waiting for it and the first time I cranked it up, I was happy as all hell. But not long after for some reason, I wasn't getting excited about music anymore. That scared the hell out of me, because I love music. For awhile, I was watching Let's Plays and random older commercials on Youtube.

    Deftones Gore came out and I heard Prayers/Triangles and for some reason I just started getting back into music again. Even if Chino wasn't saying what I was feeling, he sounded how I was feeling. I think the important aspect here though is, Prayers/Triangles isn't normally the kind of music I listen to... It was so dissonant during the verse. I went back and started paying more attention to their catalog and I found even more music like this from them. This lead to discovering Crosses (Chino's side band) and that in turn lead to me discovering The Black Queen (Greg Puciato's electronic band).

    I found that the only possible reason this happened is because I got bored with what I was looking for in the world. I had to look somewhere else, and I opened a door that I'm not going to shut for some time. This actually happened a couple of years ago when I was disappointed with what Machine Head put out. I waiting anxiously for that album and it turned into absolute disappointment. Somehow or another, I started going back to Dimmu Borgir. After listening to their stuff for awhile, I heard an Emperor song start playing in iTunes. Got hooked bad on Emperor and looking back it's interesting because a lot of what Dimmu does nowadays can be found in what Emperor was doing 20 years ago.

    I'm not saying this is how it is for everyone, but most of the good things in my life happen because of accidents. Maybe you just need the right one to come along.
     
  15. CircuitalPlacidity

    CircuitalPlacidity Carnivorous Jesus

    Messages:
    332
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I've run into the same thing a few times over the years. I have been on a circa 5 year hiatus and am just now starting to feel the "spark" again if that makes sense. This coincides with an offer to do a project with a guy I've been wanting to work with for years, a new tuning, and a similar yet quite different style of music. This new stuff has been a challenge and I think thats what I've needed. For so long I was trying to reinvent the wheel within my chosen genre and it just proved to be taxing and uninspiring. So as scary as it was, when this new project offer came along I said lets do it, but lets push it in a direction I've never gone before. The challenge has reignited my interest. I think I was too serious about wanting to sound a certain way and tried to force that out and it killed any inspiration. This new project allows a great amount of freedom and doesn't get stale. Hope this helps.
     
  16. CircuitalPlacidity

    CircuitalPlacidity Carnivorous Jesus

    Messages:
    332
    Likes Received:
    4
    Joined:
    May 11, 2013
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    Also, I've noticed that when I stop practicing technique and focus on writing solely, I tend to start losing inspiration. A lot of my inspiration seems to come subconsciously from ideas/etc that I stumble across while practicing.
     
  17. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

    Messages:
    11,602
    Likes Received:
    2,284
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Location:
    Yorkshire, U.K
    Thanks so much for this thread. Needed it - I can relate to so much that has been said here.
    Music has been the focus of my life for 10 years. It's always been a struggle but in the last few it's really gone downhill and I've questioned myself a lot. I started dabbling in the business side of things including making guitar picks, with the aim of supporting myself on much less hours so I'd have more time for music. I've ended up working the same hours and more (which is great, business is thriving and I have great plans with that as a focus of my life) and spending less and less time with music.
    Time I do have with music I often feel like I want to be more of a composer than a guitarist - I don't know how much of that just stems from my incredible loss of skill on the guitar from playing probably an average of 2 hours a week (perhaps much less, sometimes going weeks without playing).
    I'm still very musically motivated but also let myself get into a state of thinking it's pointless to try at all if I can't do it 16 hours a day like I'd like to/used to because I hold myself to too high a standard.
    Just do what you want to do each day and see what comes of it I guess!
     
  18. MikeH

    MikeH Bring the gain

    Messages:
    9,591
    Likes Received:
    2,822
    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Location:
    San Antonio, TX
    I know the feeling well. I was fairly active for about 6 years with playing, writing, recording, and producing my own music. I toured in two bands, and started to get close to the point of planning tours in my last band until the feeling just completely fell off. Writing and band practice were dreaded events, and I wouldn't even touch a guitar between them. I threw in the towel on that band, and decided to put the guitars in their cases for a prolonged amount of time. I gave it a little over a year until I slowly started to ease back into it. And when I did that, I shipped off to basic training and tech school for roughly 6 months and didn't have a guitar around. It wasn't until a few months ago that I finally got the urge to start playing recreationally by myself again. I'm starting to get more into it, and have been playing for about 30 minutes to an hour a day when I don't have anything going on. My advice is to put it down and step away for a while. It's a little disheartening at first, because you've identified yourself with it for such a long period of time, but it's something you'll get over. Eventually, you'll get the fire to start again, and you'll want to pick them up. And if you don't, keep them locked away for a rainy day.
     
  19. Quitty

    Quitty Hates 'mojo'

    Messages:
    1,368
    Likes Received:
    127
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Location:
    Germany
    This really resonates with me for some reason. I figured the whole focus on sound was an excuse or a side-effect, not an actual cause.

    Maybe i'll sign myself up for a jam session with some friends.
     
  20. FILTHnFEAR

    FILTHnFEAR Dread it, run from it....

    Messages:
    2,011
    Likes Received:
    242
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Location:
    Naptown
    This is exactly what I was doing, and for way too long. Once I stopped doing that,which has been just in the last few months, playing has been much more enjoyable.


    I'm getting close to 40, and all this resonates with me pretty hard. Thanks for the words, man.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.