Raw talent...

I am not a fan of American Idol. I almost never watch it, unless the family has it on and I am in the room at that time. I have probably seen 2 full episodes since it originally aired.

So as I am finally sitting down at my computer this evening, after some 'post dinner' painting, I stumbled into a news 'blurb' on my browser's homepage. It mentions a magnificent performance on tonight's American Idol show.  I clicked on  the link, not really knowing why. It took me to an article about a young singer named Crystal Bowersox that intrigued me. I went to the normal place, YouTube, and sought her out.

For the next hour I sat mesmerized, as I clicked on any of her performances that I could find. Its almost as if for a small moment in time, the world stopped and I was allowed to witness something "real". In this age of digital movies, studio recorded music, plastic surgery and general materialism and "superficialness", it was like a breath of fresh air to see someone with such God-given talent, and apparent humility, just do what they were truly meant to do.

She is not the most beautiful woman to grace the American Idol show, or the most flamboyant, but she is the most naturally talented performer I can remember seeing in a long time. For me, it reminds me of Elvis (the skinny version), as he came to fame (I'm not that old, but I can read). Or maybe, watching Nolan Ryan pitch a no-hitter. In my case, it was like looking at a perfectly smooth and polished black paint job that allowed a reflection as deep and far as you dared look as it drew you in.

Every once in a while, seemingly fewer and fewer times as the years go by, we are granted a look into ourselves through someone like Crystal Bowersox, or Nolan Ryan, or even Elvis. I believe that music is connected directly to our soul. And, I believe sports are one of the best teachers of life's lessons, especially to our youth.  By watching Crystal, it reminded me that we all have a natural gift, and precious few of us really get to find it, and even fewer are able to put it into action and live because of it.

I am one of those privileged few that has found my 'gift' and an pursuing it to its fullest. I get to live, and provide for my family, because my "gift" has allowed me to do so. Who knew that building scale models as an elementary age kid would ultimately lead to what we do now?

I hope Crystal stays humble and real. Fame is coming to her, and at a fast pace. Like a freight train, she can get on and ride or get run over. I hope her experiences have made her ready for the maelstrom that is about to envelop her. If not, I hope she has wise people around her to help her transition into her inevitable new life. She has a son, and is, I believe, a single mother; therefore, I can only hope she stays grounded and doesn't go 'off the deep end' like so many other famous, talented people have done, with Elvis (the fat version), or more recently, Michael Jackson, being a prime example of how life can take you to places you never imagined you would, or could, go, and they're not always good. Ultimately, it is always a personal choice of ours that takes us either right or left at the forks in the road of life.

I can only hope, as success continues to come to my business and family, that I  stay grounded in what, and whom, got me here. If I ever get full of myself, someone (hell,everyone): set me straight. There are a few true people in my life that can, and will, do that if need be; you know who you are.

I know this has not been a normal PAINTHOUSE blog, but "something" moved me to sit down and write this. Just like that Nolan Ryan no-hitter, or an early Elvis performance, or even the first glimpse of the Chip Foose-built piece of automotive art, "Impressions", I was taken back to a place of pure admiration, and inspiration, by this young singer.

Tomorrow, the world will be back at it again, and life will be as hectic as ever. I am glad I found a small escape into one of the most pure facets of life: raw talent. Don't blink, you may miss it.

Take care, Randy

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


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