INEZ writes about the multi-faceted work she does as an artist and how she balances creating art with other side jobs that pique her interest.
I will always be a lot of things to a lot of people. Singer, songwriter, audio engineer, performing artist, teaching artist, etc. Right at this present moment, I’m helping a mentor run her website and back-end, sitting in the airport waiting to fly to LA to do an A1 engineer gig, writing a song for a client, and readying myself for the next few months as INEZ, the artist. On any given day, I’m using the entirety of my brain and skills to do odds and ends that seem to not make sense, but that I believe help round out the other areas of my working and creative life.
How do you do “all the things” and not get off track? For me, it started in college. I was fortunate enough for my big sister to sit me down during this time “You don’t have to do just one thing in this life, D.” It stuck with me. I had been spinning my wheels deciding the “how” of blending all the gifts and ideas and feelings and dreams and and and… Overwhelmed. It also doesn’t help when you experience trauma and start to look at what others are accomplishing while you are in your cycle of healing. Instead of beating myself up, I just kept my head down and started figuring things out. What things made me the happiest? Music, of course. But I love learning new things and figuring things out. Those things can be completely unrelated to music, but they do help with my main priority; being INEZ, the performer and world talent.
I sat down again recently to catch up with my sister. Her words this time, “I love how you know yourself enough to know what gear you want to be in.” This comment made me happy because there are many moments where I was unsure.
I’m not a typical artist. The push of streams and social media doesn’t make me want to make my art. I need to live and be inspired in order to create. Some people hyper-fixate on relevancy so much that they don’t know how to live and be. I, on the other hand, understand that if my mental health isn’t the best, I can’t create. I need time away. I need inspiration and I need to not be bored. When I get tired of the stress of performing, I tend to want to be in the studio, when the studio gets me stumped, I like to switch to live sound engineering gigs, when live sound makes me miss the stage the cycle repeats. I need new experiences in food, travel, learning, family, friends, etc to fill my cup to make all the creative pieces make sense. I know my gears and I don’t let others’ expectations shape what I want for myself.
There are times when I have to check myself. Where I have to remind myself of what my first love and priorities are. It’s easy to get caught up in making money or doing things that don’t exactly align with my goals. I give myself grace as much as I can, but I need to have the freedom to switch between what I feel in my heart. That may make the people who support me happy and that may make them sad, but I have to do what’s best for me.
All the things that are for me, will not miss me. This season of my life has been spent with my ailing family and getting myself together. There is a gnawing thought that I haven’t released a song since 2021, but I try to push that feeling away. Being present is more important than rushing my life’s natural progression. I guess this comes from the confidence I have in my gifts and knowing that I’m always right on time. I won’t fade away into oblivion. My new music will do amazing things, but the moments I have with my loved ones right now mean so much. An at-peace multihyphenate is a successful multihyphenate.