We had the good fortune of connecting with Alexx Artificial and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alexx, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
Work life balance is a difficult problem to solve these days. I keep an extremely tight schedule but probably like a lot of your readers, I can thrive in that environment and have found that trying to keep balance even when failing is still a satisfying and valuable part of my personality. I enjoy trying to find time for the things that I love and the passions that keep my soul alive. That being said, as a father, husband, musician, and working in the medical field during a pandemic, my work life balance is an easy thing to lose control of. I could say that I had more time to dedicate to my music when I was younger, but even then I had to fight hard to get it. Like many people, I struggled with some pretty extreme poverty and a lack of means during young adulthood. I didn’t really see it at the time but I had to improvise much of what I was able to get done and do without a lot of the rest. I needed to figure out how to meet my basic needs so that I could focus on music and I spent my late twenties figuring that out. But it’s my passion for music that keeps it alive, and keeps me fighting for time to work on it. While I may not be able to produce as much or as often as I’d prefer, what I am able to complete is of a higher quality because it is more deliberate. More importantly, now that I have straightened out my personal and professional life I have the means to do it. Of course it’s easy to say I wish I had more time, but it’s not so much about the time available, as much as the time you can use and make available. I may not be able to lounge around or have “downtime”, but I find now that the time I would spend lounging is better used towards something creative. It’s all about trying to figure out how to harness that time and to use it to work for you, because so so easy to let it work against you.
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 like to make music for myself. There’s always a sound or mood that you want but can’t find so that’s where I try to focus. Why would you make more of something you can already listen to? And no, it’s not easy, a lot of people do it like this and what I make isn’t always original sounding, but I try to get close. At this point, I am most proud of my production skills, I’ve always dreamt of being a music producer and recording engineer, only in the last few years was I able to take real steps to do it. The biggest lessons I’ve learned are to not wait on people and things. There will always be a piece of gear that you don’t have or a skill that you’d rather someone else showcase. These are excuses to delay, it’s scary to start something meaningful and risk failure, you just gotta admit it and dive in. And if doing it yourself isn’t as good as someone else, I want you to think about how much we would miss if only the best artists existed. It would be truly dystopian, just do it as best you can and if you get better later, redo it. The only thing about my brand that runs contrary to the experimental nature of my music, is just how regular I am. I have a low level office job, I’m a dad, and I have a happy family, so I wear a mask to do a little bit to protect this.
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?
I’ve actually done this with touring acts that come through, some of my favorite spots are unsurprising like HMNS and Space Center Houston, but more people should check out our parks, especially the Houston Arboretum & Nature Center which is free. My current favorite dinner spot is Cowboys & Indians on Taft. I recommend the Himalayan Heat burger with Masala fries.
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?
My wife and son deserve a lot of credit. I never had anything push me as hard to grow as becoming a father and I didn’t know what true support was like before meeting my wife.
Other: https://soundcloud.com/alexx_artificial https://open.spotify.com/artist/7I4djvFYx57Mx5u8WtVeX0?si=w0cnHkfjRqyDX3OomJy44Q