Blog

The Talent Myth

tal·ent
/ˈtalənt/ noun
1. natural aptitude or skill.
“he possesses more talent than any other singer”

Well, folks, I’m sure a lot of you have talent– and that’s great! But, all that means is that you got your foot in the door. Now, it’s up to you to make something of it. Take your natural skills and smooth out the edges of any weak areas to really make your special product stand out. Remember, by virtue of being a unique human being, your exact voice and artistry are unmatched by anyone in the world. What makes a great artist great isn’t just their talent– it’s the unique blend of talent, know-how, ambition, and their own personal artistic truth. This is true across all musical genres, and other art forms as well, from dance to journalism to visual art.

I’ve titled this blog “The Talent Myth” because I believe talent to be a dangerous label for an aspiring musician (or any type of artist, really). This is because calling someone “talented” can have the effect of making their journey feel finished, when in reality, it’s only the beginning. Talent can even lead an artist to focusing on the wrong areas of their journey, relying on other dangerous stereotypes like “luck”.

Perhaps you’ve heard the adage, “Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.” There is a lot of truth to this one, particularly in the performing arts. Once you’ve attained a certain degree of skill, if your presentation is polished and ready to go when the opportunity arises to showcase it, you just may get lucky! However, if you’ve relied on your natural talent and failed to focus in on any weaknesses or to otherwise hone your artistry, your talent won’t set you apart. Let’s face it, lots of singers have talent. But not as many have that magical combination of talent plus smarts plus work ethic plus artistic truth. Do yourself a favor and put the time in to develop yourself through all levels of your artistry– basic musical skills, presentational polish, artistic interpretation, and discovering whatever your unique contribution to the artform may be.

The good news is that if you’re not naturally inclined toward musical ability, that certainly doesn’t mean you can’t improve. In fact, those who aren’t naturally inclined can absolutely apply their unique perspectives and some work ethic to develop their skill level and– dare we say?– raise it to a level of aptitude, becoming “talented”. It’s true that the path may be harder for those who come into music later in life, but nothing is impossible if your heart is in it, your use your head to strategize the process, and you stick with it consistently.

Are you talented? It’s a label you can claim for yourself now or earn as you go; either way, the path to musicianship is easier with a trusted teacher to help guide the way. Learn more about Cardon Studios membership here; whichever level you jump in at, we’ll help you make the most of your journey!