Ten Years Grateful

My first tour was in 2009. For two weeks, I performed around New England with my friends Sam Moss and Will Stratton. Ten years later, they’re both still making music.

I posed for a photoshoot in the spring of 2019, a few months into my biggest year of touring yet. My wife, Olivia took this picture. Her photo moniker is Olive & West Photography.

I began touring 10 years ago. It was spring of 2009, and I was about to graduate from college during the peak of “The Great Recession.” There weren’t any jobs to be had anyway, so I figured I might as well play music. I pulled together my friends Sam Moss and Will Stratton, and we planned a humble tour. For two weeks at the birth of summer, we drove around New England performing in backyards, garages, art galleries, living rooms, and any place that would have us. We slept on floors, couches, and ate whatever people fed us. We had a tremendous time, seemed to make people happy, and after expenses, we each went home with $92. It seemed too good to be true.

Ten years later, things aren’t too different, but I’m even more grateful for living a life that might as well be a lucid dream. In 2019 I performed approximately 90 times. Some were gigs, some were shows, and some were on-air radio spots. I booked all of them myself, or as a collaborative effort with fellow musicians. I performed in 18 states across the US. My music was played on approximately 150 radio stations, and streamed in 36 countries, with 1,400+ listeners just on Spotify. On YouTube and Facebook combined, my songs were streamed over 22,000 times. I wrote 32 songs. These statistics aren’t staggering, but things have certainly grown over the past 10 years. 

I don’t make music so I can pour over numbers. I make music because I love the process, and feel that somehow, I have something to contribute to this artistic canon. I enjoy sharing a part of myself with listeners, and consider every tune, every note, every word an offering. When I look back at the journey and success I’ve enjoyed in 2019, one thing is clear: I owe it all to you. Without you, I’d have no one to sing for but myself. I am grateful for every moment you spent with me and my music this year, and every year. I am honored you care enough to listen, show up for a concert, and share a part of yourselves and your lives with me. Above all things, I am grateful, and cannot thank you enough. I don’t know what the next ten years has in store for us, but if it’s anything like previous decade, I’ll be pinching myself the whole way through. Thank you for everything.

Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year.

– Jackson –

Leave a Reply