We had the good fortune of connecting with Dorée Gordon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dorée, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
I’ve always kept myself very busy. Whether it was with music, work, or even just hobbies, I struggle to feel at ease when I’m not learning or working towards something. I don’t mean to say this as a positive thing, though it has its upsides, because work life balance has been a big struggle to me in the past. I’ve only just begun to find the sweet spot between the two. I was forced to get really organized this year because I just started back at school after a two year hiatus. In this two year gap I was playing shows and working at a gym to make rent. This wasn’t too hard because I only had a few things to focus on, but now balancing between money work, music work, and time off, I see the importance or balance more than before. I’m a big advocate for google calendar and pretty much plan and color code my whole life in there. This has changed the way I think about my time because I can see what my whole week will look like and be sure I give myself time to rest or play music for pleasure rather than work. I’ve definitely grown to appreciate the time I have to myself now and prioritize it. You can’t do a good job at anything if you’re not taking care if yourself first!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
What a layered question! I guess I’ll start from the beginning… I’m in the process of recording my first full length album and I am SUPER excited about that. I feel like I’m starting to get a better sense of what I want my music to sound like and this album feels like my debut for that. I’ve released music in the past, but I’ve grown so much since then. Having separated myself from the music world for a bit during my time off of school, I feel a greater appreciation for how I am surrounded by musicians again and it’s inspired me more than I expected. I’ve learned not to take my peers for granted, because in the real world there are less musicians around willing to play and create with you! I’ve played guitar since I was 8 and was writing music even before then. I started learning classical but eventually branched out into more contemporary music styles. I view the guitar as my tool to write on more so than I see it as something I can play to accompany others. I use alternate tunings for almost all of my songs so playing for others is a bit of a challenge for me. I hope to improve my standard playing ability, but I also love how freely and colorful alternate tunings allow me to think. I’m not sure what I want people to know about me but I love making music and I wish for everyone to have an artistic outlet. It’s the best!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Oooh snap. Hell yeah lemme think. If theyre staying with me in Brooklyn, I’d bring them to get some bagels from Catskill Bagels, walk around prospect park, check out the botanical gardens, go to some cool art exhibits open at the time, see some music by a friend or person we like, go to some thrift stores in williamsburg or lower east side my favorite is Stella Dallas but they’re a bit more expensive…), wander around riverside park and bring them rollerblading at Riverbank state park. There are so many things and places I’d want to bring them a week wouldn’t be enough!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to dedicate my shout out to my sister, Jolee Gordon! She is my best friend and the most incredible musician and songwriter and just moved to California for grad school so I’m missing her. She deserves all the recognition. Check out her recent EP “Good Parts” or her duo project Houndsteeth!
Facebook: dorée gordon