The concept of fame has been on my mind quite a bit recently, because of a number of different encounters with it in my burgeoning social circles. My memory has thus been jolted, and I’ve considered my own relationship with it in my life…

My introduction to being famous came when I was 13, having just finished recording my first album. I think it was a Wednesday; I was going to school, but went to pick up the daily newspaper at the kiosk first, as I’d just done an interview for a publication a day or two before. I knew that I was to be written about in the newspaper, but as a complete unknown, I certainly wasn’t expecting to be on the cover of it. And lo and behold, I was. My frickin’ face–right there–for everyone to see. Something akin to “Fuck..!”went through my head when I saw it, and I felt a strong urge to hide and escape, in addition to stomach-churning excitement. I hadn’t even told my classmates yet that I had recorded an album. It was actually quite embarrassing buying the paper. Suddenly I felt as if all eyes were on me.

In my experience, fame initially injects a large dose excitement into one’s life. It’s a real burst of adrenaline, though the euphoric nature of it passes rather quickly. It is perhaps drug-like in its nature, but living life being famous is quite different, I think. One adapts to it, and it becomes merely an aspect of one’s life. An added layer, mostly neither good nor bad, just something to be dealt with. Often times, it is something to be navigated and taken into consideration, as people react to fame in different, unpredictable ways. Self-protection becomes increasingly important.

I can see that some people get caught up in fame, and need their dose of it regularly. I understand that. Personally, my addictions have been of a different sort. Not necessarily healthier, just different. Fame has always scared me more than it has ever beckoned me. Having experienced both the ups and downs of it at such an early age, I no longer have illusions about it. It’s a mixed bag, and in the end, life is life for all of us. Our sense of normalcy is different, but our issues remain (if we don’t work on them), whether we are famous or not. Fame itself solves nothing, and while there are many perks to it, I would say it can complicate things equally as much…

“Fame is a bee. / It has a song / It has a sting / Ah, too, it has a wing.”
 -Emily Dickinson