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  • Jordan O'Connor

End of the line


The End of the Line

I started playing when I was in grade 7th. I got my first bass about a month before I turned 13. It was a Cort headless bass:

Here is an image I found online.

Bass quickly became my identity; I gained a focus and sense of direction I had been without. In high school I got my hands on a double bass, which further encouraged my sense of purpose as an artist.

I played in a Jazz band, for a season I played with the local Symphony (Kanata Symphony.) In grade 10 I went to an Arts high school, where I met more players and bassist Jamie Gatti who mentored me, guiding and encouraging me as I began to gig more around town. By the time I was 17 years old I was gigging pretty consistently. It gave me a place in the universe—I was a musician!

Now, skipping over many years, I will soon be 46. I won’t (and can’t) go into my journey here in a blog but I can say after 30 years, so much has changed in the business. I talk with musicians about this from time to time; how what we do is increasingly without a place in our society, and, how, as we get older, we see the end of the line for ourselves as musicians. Of course, it is easy to complain, romanticising a more vibrant musical past, and I am not doing either; although I will confess at times I have fond nights of reminiscing. The question is simply: what’s next?

I will always play. In fact, being freed from a regiment of gigging is liberating. I knew as I got older this was not only a reality but a necessary reality. Ultimately we all end up in silence; ultimately we are not musicians we are beings in a moment—we are a single note in the symphony of life.

When I got my first bass, my journey was very external. As I age my journey is internal. So "The end of the line" means dropping barriers within myself—it means: the end of lines within myself.What a “career” is (?) that’s something I have never understood and at this point I can safely say: I never will. Maybe something things don't change after all.


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