ARTS AND CULTURE: Josh Messick

Mar. 7—Joshua Messick will be performing Saturday, March 12 at First Presbyterian Church in Ironton at 7:30 p.m. For a preview, visit youtu.be/PMPFaKpF1SM

Genre Style: Acoustic Instrumental Hammered Dulcimer Music — For this concert, I will be performing as a soloist.

Location: Colorado Springs, Colorado

How did the project start?

I first heard the hammered dulcimer when I was four and fell in love with the sound. I promised my mom I’d learn to play it.

What are three adjectives to describe your style?

Ethereal. Creative. Evocative.

Walk us through your creative process. Does it vary, if so, how?

When creating new music, I try not to think too much. I just play and until I find a phrase I like. I make quick record of it and keep on inventing. After enough good ideas come together, I make a demo recording on my phone and give it a listen. This is when I analyze the embryonic composition, looking for ways to make it better.

How has your art evolved since you started?

Early on, I didn’t know how to branch out into more genres. I was stuck in a self-made box. In more recent days, I’ve been able to branch out into many different styles of music. It’s helped me understand that an appreciation and respect for differences brings immense joy and fulfillment.

What is your favorite creative tool, and why?

My home recording studio. The microphone is a microscope that gives me a close up, honest view of my playing. It also allows me to hear myself as a listener, not a performer. Ultimately, I want to make music that is listenable, and that is why I appreciate the objective opportunity recorded music provides me.

What about being an artist fills your cup? Why should others take interest in the arts?

Music accomplishes so much more than I realize. I could write pages on this topic. But, for this interview, I’ll keep it brief. The thing I enjoy the most about music is that it brings people together.

Any advice for new or struggling artists?

There is no singular path to success. Everybody’s artistic path is different. You often times have to find that path inside of yourself, not a book. But, there is one thing that I think all artists should pursue: play for the joy music provides. When you’re joyful and love what you do, it is contagious. It creates opportunities you want, as well as fans who will build you up.

What upcoming project should we look for, and where can we look for it?

I am currently recording on five soundtracks. I can’t tell you what, just yet, but keep an eye on my website for official announcements.

What question do you never get asked that you would like to be asked? How would you answer?

I’m honestly not sure… I have thought about it, but I just don’t know.

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