Art is normally presented as a pristine, finished product. The process that begins with an idea, or several ideas, passes through any number of permutations and failures, and ends with a painting on a wall, or a film, or a recorded piece of music, is hidden from view. At the end of a musician’s career, you might see an album of their early unfinished demos released, but this is always retrospective – a belated vehicle for placating insatiable fans, and/or making more money, in the absence of new works.
Trying Artist is a project which focuses not on the end-product, but on the process of creativity itself. This is an as-exhaustive-as-possible list of all the songs I’ve ever made. A few included are covers, many more are jokes. But most of them are serious attempts at music. They represent the sum total of my artistic worth to date.
Only recently has technology made it possible for someone to complete such large amounts of home recording, and store the results. It’s clear to me now that I recorded music before I could really play any instruments, let alone write songs.
Trying Artist constitutes the entire creative endeavours of one musician, unedited, with commentary. It’s personal and individual, because it maps out years of a person’s life, but it’s also not just about an individual, it’s about creativity, and passion, and how annoying you are when you’re a teenager.