We had the good fortune of connecting with Eric Ramsey and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Eric, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
I’m self-employed (a full-time musician/performing songwriter). It’s always a challenge to find a balance between work and personal time. As I’ve gotten older and our kids have become more self-suficient high schoolers I definitely have more time to dedicate to writing and recording and all the ancillary stuff that goes with being in the music industry – social media, booking, promotion, etc. I think I’m probably working MORE now, on a daily basis, than I ever have in the past. I find I have to force myself to step away from all my work-related duties and consciously make time for my wife and family. Because there’s always something to do, right? In normal (pre-COVID-19) times I’m performing 3-5 nights a week and perhaps on tour for a couple of weeks at a time. Not your traditional scenario for most families, indeed. My wife is incredibly supportive and understanding, as are the kids (when not on their phones). So when I’m around I try to be available to everyone and as helpful as possible in the day to day things.
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.
I’m a musician and performing songwriter. I became a full time musician in 2014 thanks to the support of my wife and family after leaving my previous career as an electrician. Since then I’ve been able to release 4 records of original material and one Live in Concert record. I’ve been featured at songwriters festivals in different parts of the country, have toured and played shows in many different states, and have won awards for my songwriting. There are a million + 1 people out here doing what I do, each great in their own way. I try to write songs from personal experience – sometimes funny, sometimes introspective, and as a result I feel my narrative voice is unique. I like to find interesting ways to express commonly held ideas or experiences. I’ve learned to always be true to that voice, to always respect the intelligence of the audience, and to never give less than 100% in performance. Has my road been easy? Depends on your definition of “easy”, I guess. As anyone who works in the arts will attest, today’s culture doesn’t value the work of creative individuals. Recognition and popularity do not necessarily translate in to financial support. Most creatives have to find other ways to supplement their incomes – teaching and service work are two examples. I have it better than a lot of folks – I have trade to fall back on should the need ever arise. I have a supporting and loving family. I have tremendously supportive peers. These days everything everywhere is uncertain. The music industry is no different. No one really know what our country (or the world, for that matter) will look like eon the backside of the COVID-19 pandemic. I feel that music is more important now than ever – sharing songs is a wonderful way to create (and cement) a community. Sharing music provides an expression for common experiences. Music lets us know we’re not alone.
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?
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My wife Scarlet deserves all the credit for any success I’ve had. I would not be where I am professionally without her constant, unwavering support. Thank you my love….
Joe Kopcik Mark Spoerner Cathy Jones Bob McCarroll