Wrapping up 2021

Posted on January 2, 2022


I made one of these posts last year, so I figured that I would make another one for 2021. Maybe this will become an annual thing for me, but I suppose that’s dependent on how eventful my life is a year to year.

I’m ending 2021 with a lot of uncertainty. Some of it is existential: I recently found a subreddit called r/collapse* that I’m trying to steer clear of because perusing it is terrible for my mental health — it takes doom scrolling to a whole new level. It’s not just anxiety about what omicron is going to do to this planet, there’s everything from the next American Civil War to the impending climate disaster. My personal favorite: the future hellscape where computers are doing everyone’s job, but instead of being liberated from the need to work, Americans wallow in poverty because this country seems to be allergic to making life better for its citizens.

But underneath all of that, I still have plenty of things to consider just in my own life. One of the big accomplishments for me this past year was releasing an EP with my band. At that moment, I became an actual recording artist with published work.

Unfortunately, Saint Vrain is in a bit of a weird spot. The rest of the year was punctuated by some significant personal development among the band members, so it’s been slow going. That’s the way it works when your band isn’t your full–time job; there are other things in your life you need to prioritize. But I can help get the feeling that we routinely set ourselves up for failure. Take our name for example: we were calling ourselves Just Another Mountain Band, which was a name that none of us really liked, so we switched over to Saint Vrain, a name that none of us really like.

We’ve started work on the next album, but I really don’t know what the future of the band is. I think it’s high time for me to look at supplementing my life with other musical projects. But I haven’t really found a lot of recording work to do, and with omicron ravaging the country, I don’t know how many serious bands really even need a drummer.

Also at a crossroads with my own career. I’m perpetually caught up in the struggle of wanting to make music a full–time job, and then coming back down to planet earth and deciding that I’m going to have to pursue some more realistic avenues.

When I was back home for the holidays, I found the old sheet music I used from my high school drumline days. It was ten years ago that I finished up my first season with a marching band, a pivotal moment in me taking music seriously as a passion. I wouldn’t have guessed that a decade later, I would be watching a December wildfire destroy a couple of towns outside of Boulder in just a few hours’ time. And the next day, we had a snowstorm.

There were some alumni basketball band events at the end of the year for CU that I was looking forward to attending — they would have been my first opportunity to play a real performance in months. I got to go to one, but all the remaining gigs have been canceled, more or less because of COVID.

I’m kind of embarrassed about how excited I was to play at these games. At least they were something. Lately, I’ve had a whole lot of nothing.

So overall, I guess I’m not sure where I’m headed, or where mankind is headed. A few things are certain: I’ll try to keep practicing, updating my site, and making music.

* I won’t be linking to the subreddit because you don’t want to go there. There’s also a chance a lot of the stuff on there is BS — during the fire in CO, someone started a thread claiming that the fire would get to Rocky Flats and create a Chernobyl–esque disaster. The post was a load of nonsense.

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