April 2021, What Now?

I’ve been feeling stuck for a while now.

I, like many others, graduated with a creative degree into a pandemic that completely decimated a myriad of my career opportunities. Here I sit, a multi-disciplinary musician, writer, and artist in a delivery job that causes me an enormous amount of stress and eats through my paycheck in the form of vehicle maintenance. Of course, I’m glad to be employed. Being able to pay my portion of rent and bills feels like a luxury when so many people cannot even afford survival. Being able to toss my friends money here and there so they can keep eating is a blessing; it’s atrocious that so many of the people I know are suffering because of the gross mishandling of COVID-19 by the US Government.

There are many echoes of the same distress I feel. I want to curl up under my couch and hide from the rest of the world. Every day, I go out on shift and see hundreds of Chicagoans cavorting various gentrification stations, faces commando. People snatch bags of wine out of my hands — maskless — and giggle out some variation of “don’t worry, I’m vaccinated!” or “sorry! I always forget my mask!” Going outside has been a constant lesson in how little an abundance of fellow humans care about the wellbeing of others and I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t become a wellspring of nihilism and misanthropy. I feel like an asshole for being so all the time.

Bright spots are everywhere, though. I’ve befriended so many fellow musicians and artists on Twitter. I may not be super productive, but my partner and I have written 13 songs and our debut album is almost finished. We’re proud of it, too, which is a new feeling. Oux is playing a sweet Minecraft festival in benefit of UMAW.

Speaking of UMAW, I’ve also learned a lot about unionizing, activism, and mutual aid in the past year. I’ve seen things that temper the misanthropy I feel. For every horrible thing that happens, there are scores of people ready to help in little ways that amount to massive systems of relief and that reminds me that it’s important to . Caring about shit is the only way that we survive. Cooperation, actively listening, changing toxic behaviors, all of these things are necessary and vital to keeping each other buoyed through what I fear will only get worse. I don’t want to go full doomer about multi-stage environmental collapse today, so I’ll spare y’all my paranoia-vomit for now.

I’m still left with a feeling of I was constantly busy prior to the pandemic between my freelance live audio gigs, my rehearsal studio job, music school, and Oux shows. Now I get exhausted by figuring out how to reply to an email. There are so many things that have to get done and I don’t have a clue where to start. I don’t know if I should go to grad school and become an adjunct professor (bc, let’s face it, the likelihood of being anything but a part-time high school music teacher or professor is minimal) or if I should pursue a production job or if I should delve back into audio entirely, or if I should use my social media skills or if I should put everything into Oux and take a huge risk or if…you get it.

This feels like a pity party. I have a lot to be grateful for. I am surrounded by love. I have a wonderful partner. At least I’m safe and half-vaccinated. I am lucky that my biggest problems are existential dread and mental instability for the time being. I want things to get better for everyone.

Anyway, thanks for listening. I think I’m going to get back into writing about music again. I might even try my hand at research-based articles outside of college for the first time. We’ll see!



Indigo Hope Finamore is a musician, composer, and producer. They/Them

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Indigo Hope Finamore

Indigo Hope Finamore is a musician, composer, and producer. They/Them