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Beautiful - Lyric Video 

I’d like to introduce the lyric video for my new song Beautiful. 

You get banged up along the way. The tenderness of your heart leaves it open to being wounded. 

You cover your flame, hide your feelings and thoughts under distractions, maybe you even bury you true desires under misguided ambition, chasing outcomes that might not truly align with who you are. 

You could be talked over and feel like you’re never heard, or that the point of view you’re trying to express isn’t relevant or maybe you’re just made to feel small because it lets them feel big. 

Maybe you hide in the shadows where it’s comfortable and safe and it is, but it’s only comfortable until it’s not comfortable anymore. 

There comes a time when you can’t avoid yourself  anymore. You can’t hide behind the grind of keeping a job, being someone to someone, paying bills, success, making money and planning the next holiday before you’ve finished the one you’re already on. 

Perhaps what we need to do is move towards the flame rather than away, as scary as it might be. 

Don’t bury your colours, you’re like no other. 

Beautiful is out now. I hope you enjoy the video. 

It'd be ace if you could share this your people.

 

Just put something down 

Staring at a blank sheet of paper can be daunting.  It’s actually paralysing sometimes.  You can look and look and not write anything because you keep blocking your thoughts.  It’s probably the fear that maybe the what you’re about to write is not what the world wants to hear, or may they’ll flame you for speaking up, maybe you’ll look like a fool and feel embarrassed. 

Something happens when you just begin to write, or draw, or type.  The layers of protection you’ve wrapped around yourself begin to crumble and peel away like paint of a wall, falling at your feet as revealing your true colour, the real you begins to emerge.  

You can take your time, but sometimes it’s better to just rip off the band aid and get right to it.  If you wait for the right moment you’ll probably never start.  How many songs could’ve been written but never were? How many paintings could’ve been painted , but never were?  

Maybe the best way to avoid that paralysing feeling is to just make a start.  Steve Prescott describes this feeling of inertia in his book The War of Art.  

As important as it to start, it’s probably also equally as important to finish.  I don’t know if there’s much to be gained by starting something and then not finishing it.  How can we claim progress if we don’t finish what we started.  

Just start whatever it is you’ve been putting off, but make sure you finish it too.  I’ve got a few songs that need to be completed.  Shall we make a deal? 

When space is all you really need  

Sometimes you’re just busy.  Maybe you want to be busy because then you don’t need to think about the thing you really want that you haven’t done. That thing you keep saying you’ll do but never do.   

Do you feel some kind of invisible block between you and you dream?  It’s like every time you try and think of the next move you mind goes blank.  Maybe it’s fear.  Fear of success, fear of failure or fear of what other people may think of you.  Maybe even fear that you’ve been kidding yourself all these years and now it’s time to own up to it and begin to take some serious action.   

It can be hard to see this when you’ve buried yourself under a mountain of tasks which are most likely not aligned with your end goal.  Maybe what you need is to put some space between you and these tasks so you can see the lay of the land and give yourself a chance to make a change.   

It could be a few days in a different part of the country or even the world.  It could just be disconnecting from technology to listen to your heart and then muster the courage to follow it.  There’s a million distractions, from aimlessly surfing social media to trying out new online business or continually reading self help books.   

It’s only when the rubber meets the road that we’re ever going to feel like we are making progress.  Space can be the thing we need to realign ourselves with what we really want, if we can muster the courage to fully commit. 

Art - the antidote to being too busy 

Art - the antidote to a being over busy  

Do you feel like you’re so busy that you end up being busy almost just because busy is what we do these days? 

You’ve probably got a job or a way of making money, we all need that, but maybe as it seems to be for most of the population you probably wouldn’t do it if you didn’t have to.  If you had the chance, you’d do something completely different.  If you’ve got a side hustle and a family you’re probably so busy you’ve lost sight of what it is you’re actually hoping to achieve from all this busyness.   

Art, although not everyone’s cup of tea has the ability to stop us from continuing to turn the wheel and see our life from a different view.  We’re challenged to find a meaning in the art work and through that challenge we can get the opportunity to view our world from a different angle and find that our purpose has been buried under being busy.   

Art can be a challenge.  But maybe it’s the challenge we need to reassess how we’re spending these precious days, which will at some point come to an end. 

Believe. 

Maybe you’re at a job that you don’t really like, you might not completely despise it, but it leaves you feeling unfulfilled.  The money is probably ok, maybe enough to get by but there’s never really much left when the month is over to save or go on a holiday. 

You can feel yourself waning, losing faith.  You never used to be like this all those years ago, you were excited and every day was an adventure.  The thrill of not knowing what was around the corner would keep you up at night, but now, you’d rather just go to bed and get through the week.  What happened?  Where did that you go? 

Somewhere the real you is till there, it’s just buried under routine and jobs that don’t really align to who you are.  It’s draining you of the belief that you can actually create some resemblance of a life that makes you happy. 

It’s understandable; responsibility is getting the better of you.  But you can’t give up.  Faith is like a garden that needs to be fed and watered and have we really kept feeding it?  Probably not, so understandably it’s begun to die.  

Back then all your friends felt the same way too, tomorrow was exciting, but now they’re like you, all feeding each other the same negative message.  

Bruce Lipton, a genealogist suggests that to reprogram your brain you should listen to some affirmations just as you’re drifting off to sleep, because your sub conscious, the part of your brain that drives 90% of your behaviors will absorb what it’s hearing and begin to change over time. 

I don’t about you, but I’m up for giving it a go.  Life is too short to be wasted hanging out with thoughts that don’t serve us well.

 

ajsteelmusic.com

Free highs and no one gets hurt.  

We’re in a world where social media is the new keeping up with the Jones’s.  We see people with amazing bodies, that maybe we wish we had, laying all over expensive sports cars, parading diamond encrusted watches and holidaying in what seems to be the world’s most luxurious resorts. 

The pressure to not buy in is pretty high, but in searching for a high it’s easy to be convinced that these things will be our magic elixir.  

The high you feel when you buy that car, or go on that holiday and post it on social media sends signals to through the social media galaxy that you’re on the move, the move up.  Out with the old you and in with the new.  Is this the high you’re really searching for though?  Is it a high that lasts longer than the time it takes to swipe your credit card to purchase those $400 dollar shoes you don’t need or that leather jacket you want so you can really make a statement. 

There is another high.  It’s an inexpensive high that contributes more than just boosting the profits of that global fashion chain.  It’s called kindness. 

Have you been pounding down the pavement in your town, your mind racing as you contemplate the next 5 things to do so you can keep the forward momentum going, when you almost knock over a bewildered stranger trying to find their way around.  

Normally you’d be head down and you’d keep moving but for some reason you stop.  Maybe because your eyes connected and you knew you were cornered with no way out.  Let’s be honest, it’s hard to say no to helping someone when they’re looking right at you, we have this deep innate sense to be helpful to each other, even though we may keep it buried under jobs and commitments.  

So you stop and they show you they’re phone.  They’re looking for directions.  You take a look and you instantly know where they’re going.  You give them the best way to get there, wish them well and you both part ways. 

Suddenly your heart begins bloom and you can’t stop smiling.  You feel good, really good.  Actually, better than you’ve ever felt.  You feel light and you can feel the stress running out of your body.  The shoes your bought are nice but for some reason they don’t seem to matter as much. 

When you think about it, you feel good because you’ve helped someone.  You helped them because you are innately kind.  We are innately kind and the high we get from being kind is hard to beat.  It feeds our spirit and in part reaffirms our reason for existing, more so than an expensive dinner or car could ever do. 

We should take the opportunity to be kind whenever it’s presented to us.  This is the high we’ve been searching for, this is the high that lasts and leaves a positive imprint not only on us, but also on the people around us.

ajsteelmusic.com

Who I am without you 

I've been writing a song about when you break up with someone.  It's about the the path to try and find who you are without that person in your life.  These are some lyrics which almost done.  Next is time to begin demoing the vocal and melody to see to how it's all coming together.

 

Who I am without you 

A.J. Steel 2018 

  

We were silver stars at night 

But we burned up all our light 

Now I’m on my own 

  

I’m still in orbit with you 

And our sun is turning blue 

I don’t know how to find 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

Maybe when I find a way 

To let the light inside escape 

I’ll see 

Who I am without you 

 

You shine brightest in the sky 

I see you’ve moved on with life 

I’m happy for you 

 

I’m turning inside the sun 

Thinking about what I’ve done 

Hoping that I find 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

Maybe when I find a way 

To let the light inside escape 

I’ll see 

Who I am without you 

 

Would you take a chance again? 

Do you want to see if we’re more than friends? 

Cause I know for sure 

I don’t like what I see, 

I don’t like 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

Maybe when I find a way 

To let the light inside escape 

I’ll see 

Who I am without you

A little kindness goes a long way 

300million people in the world suffer from depression.  Self belief is not easy for some of us.  It takes a bit of work. 

As an artist, writing and releasing my own songs, you leave yourself open to criticism and that’s ok.  But, there’s criticism and there is criticism.  I don’t think any artist doesn’t like receiving constructive criticism, we actually crave it.  It lets us view what we’ve made from an angle that is usually hidden from us. Seeing your creation through the eyes of someone else is a powerful way to see the areas of your craft you need to work on. 

Then there’s the other criticism.   The kind that really offers no ‘creative nutrition.’ The kind where it’s more about the critic than it is about you the artist.  

When you share your creation as an artist you’re sharing a deep personal part of yourself.  You have to, the only way to impact someone is to go where they and you wouldn’t naturally go.  

We bury our lives under tasks and responsibilities and this gives us the cover to avoid deep self-reflection.  What if we don’t like what we see?  What would we do? What could we do?  Artists need to be brave in their exploration and that’s what makes criticism of the non-constructive type so poisonous.  

I remember a moment, there’s been a few, but one in particular when I was very early on in my writing career.  I showed a person, who’s opinion I valued, a new song I demo’d on cassette, yes a cassette.  Was it the next big hit? I thought so at the time but in reality it was nowhere near it.  I was however, really excited about it.  When I showed this person they pressed play on the Walkman and began to listen to the song.  I was waiting patiently to see their reaction and it wasn’t what I hoping to see. 

They kind of screwed their nose up and blatantly said ‘I don’t like it, I don’t think it’s very good.’  Ok, could you tell me why?  “It’s just not good.” Wow thanks, you’re not some stranger on the street or some record label exec, you’re close to me, we’re friends.  Could you be a little more understanding? 

It felt like they’d taken a scalpel and just cut my heart out.  I don’t think we put enough consideration into the words we use sometimes.  All I needed was some gentle encouragement, maybe something like, ‘yeah, you are definitely getting better,’ could work.  Not, ‘it’s just not good.’  Not from someone that’s close to me.  To an artist it’s like a parent saying I don’t love you anymore.  Our creations are our babies.  We’ve just bared our soul, our deepest, darkest and most personal thoughts and you just toss it away like it’s a used up chocolate wrapper.  Yeah, thanks! 

It hit me hard, really hard.  I had to take a moment to asses the situation.  I felt angry, sad, worthless, but, I was lucky because deep down inside of me their was a punk sticking his finger up saying jam you, at least I’m expressing myself.  

Did it really matter if it was good or not?  When you’re so early on your process all you need is encouragement and constructive criticism.  Something to keep the wind in your sails.  Eventually you’ll either keep going or give up naturally, and if you give up naturally you’ll be able to live with the decision and a full heart. 

You never know where someone is as at emotionally.  Choose your words with kindness in mind.  You don’t have to say it’s amazing if it’s not.  You can say there’s room for improvement with kindness.  If we treat each other the way we’d like to be treated., with a little kindness, maybe less of us will fall into this staggering statistic.

 

ajsteelmusic.com

Who I am without you 

A sun without a moon orbiting with no reason.  You know that feeling you have when you break up and you're left to find your feet on your own? At least that's what I'm trying to write about in this new song I'm working on called 'Who I am without you.'  These are some draft lyrics.  There on the way.  If I'm honest though,I think the second verse needs to the most attention, but, it's getting there.

 

Who I am without you 

A.J. Steel 

 

We were silver stars at night

But we burned up all our light 

Now I’m on my own 

  

I’m still in orbit with you 

And this pale sun turned blue 

I’m just trying to find 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

If there’s no light without the sun 

Then how am I going to find 

Who I am without you 

 

You found love in the moon dust 

You said this love is enough 

I’m happy for you 

 

I’m turning inside the sun 

Thinking about what I’ve done 

There’s time on hand 

Time to find 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

If there’s no light without the sun 

Then how am I going to find 

Who I am without you 

 

Would you take a chance again? 

Do you want to see if we’re more than friends? 

Cause I know for sure 

I don’t like what I see, 

I don’t like 

 

Who I am without you 

Who I am without you 

If there’s no light without the sun 

Then how am I going to find 

Who I am without you

 

 

You are worth it.  

I began writing songs quite late in life, I was about 16 or 17.  When I finished my first song I was so excited and thrilled the reaction was less than stellar.  I remember responses like, ‘it’s not bad’, ‘there’s a bit of work to do.’  I felt completely deflated.  I wrote Beautiful about this moment and moments where people feel the need to let you know you still have ‘work’ to do.  You can’t give up and join the rank.  You are beautiful, we are beautiful, we just have to believe it.

my new single Beautiful will be released on the 2nd November.  

Summary

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