Archive | May, 2015

Confession from an Introvert

22 May

I recently got a personal message from a fan who had some things to say about my off-stage personality, so I have decided to bare my soul a little and address it. Hopefully this will help some of you understand me as a person as well as a musician.

The message I received was that I am a very talented musician who seems to do very little to get along with my fans on a deeper level. So I’m writing this to set the record straight. Never in a million years would I have been brave enough to say this out loud had I not gotten this message, so in a way, I’m grateful to have gotten it. It helps me to explain myself.

If you come to my shows expecting an out-going, fun guy offstage…well, I’m sorry, I’m kind of a let-down in that department. Sometimes I can be, but most of the time, I’m just not. Of course, I can talk to fans and can carry on conversations for a while, but going deeper than that, it’s hard for me to meet those expectations. You see, I am very much an introvert–even though I really don’t want be. If you have ever come to my show and I made you feel uncomfortable after we ran out things to say, that was truly never my intention. I’m sure a lot of those insecurities are all in my head and not even real, but for me, it feels very real.

Most often, the first time I meet you would be to buy a CD and in that situation, I have a little script in my head to drive the conversation forward–in hopes that you’ll become a fan and like me as a person and entertainer. After that, my insecurities come out and I begin to want to run and hide away. I get nervous that you might see the cracks in my personality.

I have broken that barrier occasionally. There are people who are long-time fans of mine who–through witchcraft or voodoo–have somehow eased me out of my shell and made me less self-conscious about my public phobias. But I still become terrified at the thought of someone–anyone–wanting to know me as a person.

I believe I’m good at my job–playing music–but that comes at a price. For every song I’ve written that tells something about me that I’m proud of, I also have a way of burying myself deeper in my head and believing that no one cares to hear about that side of me–good or bad.

As you may know, I was in a band years ago. We had a website where fans could converse with us and a common theme was “Why is Jeff such a snob?”. People loved the music I was a part of creating, but couldn’t understand that the person they saw on-stage–charismatic and bigger than life– was actually shy and introverted off-stage. I spent much of my time hanging out in band’s van, hiding from people, not because I was “a snob”, but because I thought if they got to really know me, they wouldn’t like the person I really am.

Well today, I’m still that same guy. I am a musician and always will be, but after all these years, I still haven’t outgrown these feelings. Even revealing this now makes me feel uncomfortable and vulnerable.

So here’s what I’m trying to say. I truly do appreciate every single person who comes to see me and likes my music. Your loyalty means more to me than you know. Hopefully now you understand me a little better. Crazy as it seems, I’m capable of playing songs in front of a lot of people, but often not capable of revealing myself on a more personal level. But I promise I’ll keep working on it. I am truly trying to be the best person that I can. Thanks to all of you for your understanding. Maybe some of you can even relate!

Thanks for reading this! Check out my website at http://www.musicjeffwood.net