Hello there! My name is Octavia and I'll be your host for this evening. I run the page Octavia and the Ocean, on which, I realized, I've never written about how I got to where I am as a musician and why I love it so. I just finished my Bachelor of Music degree, majoring in Classical Voice and am in a confusing time of figuring out how to be a musician and make a living.
I've never really questioned my interest in music; it's been a major factor in my life for as long as I can remember. My mom used to tell me that while she was pregnant with me, she could frequently hear me humming and I've sung for as long as I can remember.
Now I'm finally finished with music school and it's hard to believe how far I've come.
My active start in music was quite late; I didn't learn sight-reading until I joined choir in 7th grade, even though I'd been wanting lessons or ensemble involvement much earlier (however, I frequently wonder if I would have the same love for it, had I been forced to take lessons when young). I started incredibly shy and ended with awesome aural and reading skills. Throughout the next few years, I was singing in my high school's chamber choir, but still wanting more music in my life - I never felt like it was enough, despite the fact that I would usually play guitar or piano when I got home and work on terrible high-school songwriting.
Some of my best friends were made because of choir, and some of those lovely people helped introduce me to other opportunities in the area, which is how I got involved in professional youth choirs. From there, I joined many other honor/all-state/regional choirs and summer festivals and started taking voice lessons (admittedly rather late). But still never felt like I was doing as much as I could.
I wanted to write.
And so I tried. And made the elementary mistakes of thinking it was decent. But I'm still trying and still pushing myself to compose more frequently (As well as work on songwriting). When I'm composing, I can't feel anything else around me. True, I wasn't a comp major and have really only learned by doing, but it's something I love doing, so I feel like it still counts.
When I'm listening, my favorite pieces of music are those that sound cold to me. Those that make me feel alone in a field on the hillside, or a forest in the rain. My favorites are always depressing. And so when I write, I try to go for that same bittersweet mood that I love, without writing the same songs twice. My goal is to write a piece that almost sounds like it's in major but still feels sad. Or like a memory of something sad or passed.
Sometimes I end up thinking about what I would be like as a person if music didn't affect me so, and I just can't imagine it. It's everything. Even though I'm not yet making a living or having this as my career, it's what I love, and someday it will be exactly what I'm doing with my life.
I believe that love is the purpose of life, but music is a very close second.