The older you get, the more you know and the harder it is to keep your little dreams intact.
As a 13-year-old girl, I was just a shy, closet musician and writer who kept her tiny blog handy and eyes wide and open. Whether I knew it or not, seeing someone who looks like you doing what you want to do can speak volumes.
When you’re young you don’t realize how much your culture can play a part in how the world reacts to you. But there I saw these two girls who looked like me — Asian-American and old enough to be my older sisters — making music I loved in a band and touring the world.
And Meg & Dia were genuine about it. They were little bookworms, obsessing over classic novels by great American authors and weren’t afraid to goof over their mishaps. They had this energy that they didn’t know what the hell they were doing but just wanted to write and play and make great music and have fun with each other. And it showed.
I’m sure anyone can relate to the feeling of having been a part of something so great and not knowing what to do after it’s done. “All things come and go,” they say, and I’ve found that’s just a threshold into growing up.
I’m only 23 and only just feel as if I’m beginning to tap into myself and voice as an artist. But a part of me can’t help but feel scared and unsure and wondering if it’s even worth it.
For my entire life I’ve done what was expected of me: I’ve graduated college with two bachelor’s degrees and plenty of published writing experience and leadership gained from being a young Filipino-American writer and cultural dancer with a world of opportunities before me.
But at the end of the day, there’s no one-way ticket to anything. And as Dia Frampton has expressed herself in her testimonial on Cuepoint, “I was a washed up, bitter ex-musician who used to have a future.”
I found that my passion to write about and interview musicians first happened because of my desire to befriend these individuals and get into their heads — perhaps to gain their confidence or know what it’s like to be in the music industry, or what drives them to it.
A little more than a year ago I was able to write this story on Meg and Dia Frampton, as told from the perspective of their manager Mike Kaminsky, and I could feel my little 13-year-old self squealing in disbelief. In college I thought music journalism was all I ever wanted to do, but a part of me felt dissatisfied knowing I was just writing about the lives of others but never telling my own.
So why am I writing this? I’m not sure. I initially wanted to write this as a response to Dia’s article, but it speaks for itself.
With any type of art or dream or passion project, there’s always going to be a struggle — whether financially, personally, mentally or physically. Music and art is a business and you have to be marketable. (But what for the genuine lovers and doers who make art in their own name and not anyone else’s?)
The sheer act of trying and doing speaks volumes in itself. As for my life and the lives of so many other young dreamers out there, Meg and Dia have inspired people to live out their dreams and live the life you want to everywhere — whether that’s making records and touring in a band (Meg & Dia), starting your own robot jewelry line that had a successful run (Meg’s “Chandler the Robot”), running your own mobile coffee cart company and shop in your hometown (Meg and Nick’s “Three Pines Coffee”) or busting your butt everyday to make it as a struggling artist, actor, singer and songwriter (Dia).
I may be slinging back espresso drinks every day right now, and I can be dreaming of my old life in Southern California just a year ago in college going to concerts, writing articles and interviewing and hanging out and meeting people every day, but it’s important to take that step back to think about what you really want.
And if it’s the art, the music, the words, the movies, the people or the coffee that you can’t leave… Let that be a light. Just as Meg and Dia Frampton have both been to me, be that light.