Antoine’s Five Steps
for Pursuing Your Passion
1. Take risks– Pursuing your passion means making yourself vulnerable in every aspect. You must become emotionally naked, allowing yourself to make mistakes and risk being terrible. Even if you don’t desire fame and grandeur, pursuing your passion means that you want to be good at it. It means that you want to excel in it; and excellence only comes with de and re construction and you cannot be deconstructed without exposing and becoming vulnerable. Risk also involves opportunities; seizing every one that is beneficial to you and the pursuance of your passion. Read up on the stories of the people who excel in your passion, whatever it may be, and guaranteed that the level of success they achieved is almost directly associated with the level of risk they had to take to get there. Its not easy and can even be as serious as violating the values and priorities to which you adhere. But, it is necessary and it is ultimately this that distinguishes the difference between a hobby and a pursuance of passion. Do what no one else would and become what no one else can.
2. Remain Teachable- One of the hardest parts of being a human is pulling down your ego and learning from and listening to someone else. As hard as this is it is integral in pursuing your passion. You must be able to accept what you are not good at and listen to people you respect on the road to change and growth. Defense is an enemy; you must listen to criticism and be able to be broken down and take any criticism objectively and use it to your advantage; appreciate it. Now, there are people out there to whom you shouldn’t listen, as their intentions may not be genuine or they could be haters to put it plainly. These people are to be nodded and smiled at and their “criticism” taken in one ear and out the other. Discerning between them and true friends may be difficult, but with common sense and evaluation of character, they will be found out.
3. Make complacence your worst enemy- In your passion there is ALWAYS room for growth, always. Whether you grow vertically and improve on what you already do or horizontally and switch lanes to tackle something different or use a different approach to what you already do, growth is possible. With this said, it is most definitely ok to be happy with something and to leave it alone. When a song I have finished gives me that complete feeling, I leave it alone. There are times I even have to be told to leave it alone, but, nonetheless, I do. Sometimes things are perfect just the way they are; but, holistically, as far as my vocal ability and the way I sing and how my voice sounds, there is no limit to how much I can improve. It is easy to become happy with where you are and dwell on that but just know that you can go higher. If you’ve conquered a city, focus on conquering the state, then the region, then the country, and dare I say the world? And yes, the universe as well. It all lies in the balance of knowing your limitations and not having any at all.
4. Research and analyze- As a musician I no longer listen to music, I analyze it, unconsciously sometimes. When a song enters my brain I almost automatically hear harmonies, tone, technique and how the singer hits the notes, and everything in between. A passion consumes you and you cannot be afraid of that. In whatever your passion is you must research and analyze the best of the best. It is necessary to get yourself familiar with what makes the greats great. Watch their interviews and how they work. Research their stories and their history. In an age of ubiquitously available information, you have your passion at your fingertips; take full advantage.
5. Don’t be afraid to be great– An unknown fear of greatness is what I believe hinders us all. There is comfort in mediocrity and people don’t realize how limited their mentality is and how they hinder people from their own greatness. In short, Mothafuckas are haters and in most situations their hate is a reflection of their own limitations, doubts and fears. I used to be afraid to say I wanted to perform like Michael Jackson or I wanted my vocal tone to be as pure as Whitney’s in her prime. I used to be afraid to have standards higher than those around me for fear of standing out. In pursuing your passion you have to have the confidence to RESPONSIBLY associate yourself with the greats. I say responsibly because we all know someone who LOVES to do whatever it is they love to do and claims they’re the best at it, but in actuality they suck, morbidly! If you’re a painter, set Van Gogh or Warhol as your standard. If you act, aim to be as good as Meryl Streep. If you are a film director, be Michael Bay and nothing less, but do it responsibly and in your own manner of course and know the work that’s set out for you to be that great. Above all, prove it! Don’t just talk about it. Greatness speaks for itself. Know internally what your standards are and claim them commandingly. Know that you are and can be THAT GREAT and let the work speak for itself.
Back 2 Music is the motto. Hailing from Baltimore, Md currently living in Boston, Ma, Antoine is an independent artist bringing back real music one song at a time. His style mixes so many inspirations and genres alike. His versatility and appeal as an artist sets him apart, making his style unidentifiable, but his music and performance an identifying unmatched signature in itself. Working to make every record and live performance an unprecedented experience Antoine is sure to entertain and inspire, one note at a time. Be sure to check out Antoine’s latest video for his song Make You Love Me.