I’d like to start off by saying that I have nothing but respect for musicians. They’re confident, they’re idealists and they’re ballsy as hell for taking on an industry that is damn near certain to kick them in the gut once or twice. For reasons that have yet to be identified, when a woman walks into a room, the most attractive guy that she’ll find is bound to be the one sitting in the corner in cuffed-skinny jeans, strumming his guitar while tapping his scuffed leather shoes on the hardwood floor. There’s just something about a man who belts out harmonies and wears his heart on his sleeve that gets our blood pumping and our hormones ready to pounce. Give a woman a scruffy beard and calloused fingertips and she’ll be dying for him to pluck a G-string you can’t find on a Gibson or Taylor.
Well, I hate to break it to you ladies, but the idea that having songs written about you is the greatest thing in the world is a total misconception. Most women are mistaken into thinking that it’s really sweet; that it’s the best gift they’ll ever receive. And it’s not hard to see why. I mean, he wrote a song specifically about you. You were his inspiration, his muse, the face that he saw at 2 a.m. while strumming up new chords, and you’re the one that gets to curl up on the couch with a cup of tea as he debuts his work at a private concert just for you.
On the other hand, it can also be pretty awkward, uncomfortably personal, sometimes even mortifying and, in the worst cases, extremely hurtful. And do you know what’s the worst part? You can’t do a thing about it. The moment the relationship began, you signed off your heart to be vulnerable to his work—because that’s all that the songs are. Not a confession of love or something written up to make you smile; they’re items of business. And every emotional experience you’ve shared together is now subject to be exploited for the sake of making it in the glamorous, coveted, cut-throat music industry.
Most likely, however, your musical man isn’t always going to be writing songs about you, but about relationships and the idea of love in general. Which, I admit, can be very heartwarming, but it can also spike up your paranoia to crazy levels. But if you want to stick with him, never let yourself be “that girl” that says he can’t write about you, or worse, that he has to write about only you. That’s not how the game works, sweetheart. And if you’re in this relationship for the long haul, you better get used to it.
Luckily, if you’re more into the materialistic side of it all, there are definitely perks for you to look forward to. You’ll get free tickets, food comps and backstage passes galore. Even if his band hasn’t made it big yet, chances are they’re working hard to get there, so you’ll always have a gig to go to.
But keep in mind that as sexy as you find your man shredding a guitar solo on stage, the gaggle of girls in the audience are just as (if not more) turned on. Women will throw themselves at your dude, get used to it. It’s all a part of the “musician’s girlfriend” contract. It’s normal to get a little jealous, but don’t let it make you feel insecure—it’s going to happen at every show. Girls will want pictures, autographs and two minutes to flirt with him once the set is over, meaning you’ll be sitting alone in the corner waiting for your ride to be ready to go.
And sure, attending a free show is great. But that usually means you’ll get stuck loading and unloading the equipment from the car for a gig that does absolutely nothing to benefit you. Unless, of course, you’re aspiring to be a roadie, in which case I highly suggest that you date no one but musicians from here on out.
Once you’ve realized that being the subject of a song isn’t all that, you’ll start to come to a few other realizations, too. For starters, your relationship isn’t the inspiration for a poppy, foot-tapping love song; it’s a catalyst to jumpstart his career. When you break up, he’ll walk off with a pool of experiences that could inspire the single for his next EP, whereas you’re left with a playlist that puts you at risk of breaking down into tears whenever it comes on.
Furthermore, musicians are impulsive and are often gone for long periods of time. Even if their name isn’t yet written in lights, there are endless year-round opportunities for independent artists to play at festivals and small shows across the country. And trust me, no aspiring musician will turn down a chance to perform and get their name out there, even if it means leaving you and the relationship in the dust.
You must always be conscious of the fact that musicians take their inspiration from everywhere—and I mean everywhere. Whether it be from your pre-dating days, or a fight with your best friend, or an awkward sexual experience you’d like to forget. If artistic inspiration can be found, it’s going to be used for an album. If you go to bed with a songwriter, that’s what you can expect.
And in the end, you’ll realize you’re just another song on a set list. A notch in the neck of his guitar. Sounds of inspiration that will lead to a music video of him and a cute girl frolicking through a field feigning love with her better than he ever did with you.
But facts are facts: a man with a guitar is gorgeous and totally mysterious, and every twenty-something year old girl fantasizes of dating a musician at some point in their life. I’d say it’s their rite of passage as a lust-driven millennial. But before going down that road, know that falling in love with a music man is tough, inconsistent and, as Journey told us, it ain’t always what it’s supposed to be.
So after all that, if you still think it’s worth it, go for it. Maybe you’ll be the one to come out of the musician love story alive.
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