This post is 3 years old — please take it with a pinch of salt!
For years I’ve wanted to be able to sing. There are bands that I haven’t formed, karaoke sessions I’ve messed up and Bon Jovi power ballads I haven’t rocked out to around campfires all because I can’t sing.
Every time I’ve sung, people have shot me down. This might literally be once every few years, but the result is that I sing incredibly rarely. The thought of singing fills me with dread, and flashbacks to people being mean when I was a teenager.
I recently decided enough was enough. It’s really hard to jam to proper songs in London because no one sings, so very belatedly in my mid-20s I’m…just…going…to…learn…to…sing. Even if it hurts me and my neighbours hate me.
That was a few weeks ago. I work from home so I’ve been singing pretty much every day. Thank god I work from home. I’m still terrible, but I’m a little tiny bit less terrible than I was a few weeks ago. Tomorrow I might be a tiny bit less terrible than I am today. I’ve got some vocal lessons booked which I’m excited for, but I’m more excited to let go of the demons in my head which stop me from practising.
“Practice makes perfect” might be the most trite aphorism going, but in most cases it turns out it really does work. In any case, writing every day makes you a better writer - maybe I’m a tiny, tiny bit less terrible at writing now than I was five paragraphs ago.
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Jon Gold is a technologist, musician, and attention activist researching the long-term future of computation at Airbnb, focusing on the intersection of Artificial Intelligence & the creative process. Contact