Well, it’s been a while since the last blog—apologies! The last few months have entailed a lot of work and a lot of travel, making this blogger a busier bee than usual. From Orlando to Chicago to Palm Springs to Temecula to Cleveland, it’s been a whirlwind these days! One of my absolute favorite recent trips was to the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, where I work on the Academy of Country Music Awards every year. It’s always an awesome time: all of the bands and musicians are ridiculously nice and down-to-earth, and they’re such great entertainers that even this girl—who once changed the channel any time the hint of a twang came over the airwaves—has become a country music fan.
So, this year, when I finished work early and was able to seatfill in the front row for the last 15 minutes of the show, it was a great treat! But little did I know that I was about to be incredibly inspired. When Shania Twain took the stage to present the “Entertainer of the Year” award, the energy was crackling in the arena—it’s essentially the biggest award and it’s given by the fans, so it’s near and dear to the nominees’ hearts. But when she read Luke Bryan’s name as the winner, it was an absolutely unforgettable moment. I stood about 10 feet in front of him, truly moved by his heartfelt reaction. He was absolutely speechless and brought to tears by winning this award, which he 100% did not expect as a relatively new artist. (See the Kodak moment in the video below.)
Later, a friend who saw him backstage afterwards shared that the tears had continued in his dressing room, where he shared a close hugging circle with his family. (I later learned that the tears reflected both joy and pain, in light of the loss of his older brother to a car accident in 1996 and his older sister to a brain tumor in 2007.) Much later in the evening, we spotted him playing a lively game of craps in the casino, along with members of Lady Antebellum—way to celebrate, superstar!
So why is this relevant to Creative Groove? Well, seeing how blown away he was by winning this award brought something alive inside myself. It drove home the realization that we all have that career pinnacle we’re striving for, and whether we know it or not, it’s within reach. Whether you’re a musician, writer, entrepreneur, or artist, figure out what your end game is—and what awaits beyond it. Also, what’s going to get you there? For Bryan, it was connecting with his fans and cultivating a likable persona (and, of course, making catchy music). I don’t know about you, but I want this moment. Let’s get there, shall we?