Thursday, May 15, 2014

Growing Up Oberst

I remember where I was when I first heard Bright Eyes. This was a musical collective from Omaha who blended folk and electronic music. Intriguing in the Pearl Jam afterlife. Their front man was articulate, energetic and incredibly young. It was seemingly the first time I was looking up to someone younger than I. I enjoyed that feeling.

In the years gone by Conor Oberst has released impossibly emotional acoustic music, performed with big bands, made country rock records, and played in hard rock bands. He is a young man of many attributes. Someone younger than I who has taught me a lot.

On May 20th Upside Down Mountain by Conor Oberst will be released. This musical masterpiece comes with my highest recommendation. Here are a few lyrical snippets and how they relate to our work lives.

Though so far I have cheated death, I know some day I'll get caught
This record takes a forlorn look back. Do you remember your crazy years? Did you have any? God knows I did. It seems divine intervention has been my friend over the years, I'm not sure why I've been so lucky, but I'll take it. I obeyed my parents authority to the letter of the law, had I known they were scared shitless I may have pushed the envelope.

When we reflect on this life will we remember the test we failed or the girl we kissed on the swing? With this in mind, why do we stress over the unknown instead of marveling at the wonderment of uncertainty.

I used to think time was of the essence, now I just wish I could get some sleep
"There are hundreds of ways to get through the day" - an excerpt from Hundreds of Ways

In your 20's you seek freedom, in your 30's your spirit has greater purpose, when you turn 40 you just want to find some peace.

When I was a young man I was all action and no strategy. I worked really hard but wasted a lot of time doing unnecessary things. I have found success at every stage of my life mostly because I've been willing to work really hard. The one great truth I have discovered is that if you are willing to put in more effort than anyone else you will ultimately achieve any goal set before you.

Your silly dreams aren't worth a mention but they keep collecting in my brain
"When I break my heart I know that yours get broken, I just wish that kept me in line" - an excerpt from Night At Lake Unknown

Any headshrinker worth their salt will tell you that your desire to succeed relates back to your need to make your parents proud. Last week, we examined Kevin Durant's need to feel validated as a son to single-parent. We've seen those who replicate their parents occupation, politics, and dating habits. There are those who do exactly the opposite of their parent's intention.

Generational stereotypes have never been so prominent in the workplace. The kids are taking over without any respect for their elders and the old fogies just want to know that they are still relevant.

Have we forgotten the dreams we share? Regardless of your age there are people who you intend to make proud.... be they your sons and daughters or moms and dads. The intention of our actions is not to dispel the credibility of those of a different generation but rather to make them proud!

"So just go out with a bang like Hemingway. Some will say you're brave, some will say you ain't" - an excerpt from Common Knowledge

In the final stanza of this great record, Conor Oberst looks at the romance of reckless living and shakes his head. Having lived and learned he understands that only the things that engage our divine intention exist in longevity. Our lives are a collection of fits and starts.

Remember the times you have cried: the girl who broke up with you, the baseball that hit you in the face, the deal you didn't close. None of it left a but a smooth scar.

It's better to remember how to laugh...!

Don't Forget to Remember!


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