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« Ending agreements in the beginning for bands. | Main | Happy 'Quit MySpace' Day »
Sunday
Oct252009

‘It’s tough to beat up a guy that never quits’

Babe Ruth mouthed that ungrammatical gem, and a slumping Nick Swisher of the New York Yankees just invoked it at a critical moment in his career.

Hang with me a moment, and you’ll see what this has to do with us music artists. Swisher made the last out in Game 5 of the American League Championship Series the other night. It was a frustrating moment, since a hit in that spot could’ve finished off the Angels and put the Bombers in the World Series.

With otherwise-clutch Swisher having only three hits in 29 at-bats this postseason, the temptation loomed to sit the right fielder for another player. But manager Joe Girardi kept him in the lineup for the next critical game, and his reasons are exemplary. Girardi had a number of citations but the best came from his own postseason experience as a Yankees catcher. Girardi didn’t have a hit in the Yanks’ 1996 World Series as they entered a pivotal Game 6. He came through with what was to become a legendary triple. That clutch hit helped put the game and the series in the team’s column and set the stage for a dynasty period: four World Series titles in a five-year period.

Like a baseball season, a music career is a real grind. Baseball players play 162 games each season and more in the postseason, if they get there. Each year, even the best teams have high times and low. They play loose and have fun in the successful stretches and get tight when they play poorly. For short periods, even the best player can look clueless at the plate, his mechanics all out of whack. Then, inexplicably, he gets a cheap hit, and his sweet swing returns along with his confidence.

Out of the mouth of the Babe.Likewise, artists at every level have similar swings, if you will. But, if you’ve had successes and you simply stay in the game, you can bet you’ll have more to build on.

Is this a pep talk? Yes. I give them to myself all the time.

# # #

Allen Shadow is a rock artist, songwriter and PR pro. For more, check out his blog.

Reader Comments (3)

Well said. Can't fault the Babe - but the point was always driven home for me in Cool Hand Luke... "Sometimes Nothing is a Cool Hand..."

It's been my experience that sometimes the bands who are simply able to endure the slings and arrows of outrageous touring schedules and not being deterred by uttering phrases like "Be sure and tip your bartenders and waitre....Oh...You are the Bartenders and Waitresses..." for several years are the ones that succeed. Most "overnight success stories" are backed up by a decade worth of seemingly thankless work.

October 26 | Unregistered CommenterRick Goetz

"Cool" comment, and you're so right, Rick. There are no overnight successes, and those talented artists who endure are the ones left to continue climbing that unforgiving ladder.

October 27 | Registered CommenterAllen Shadow

Thanks for the pep talk! I will check out your blog...

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