I almost became a jazz musician - instead I became an economist.

It almost sounds like a line from some country music song, except for the bit about jazz – and except for the fact that it’s not a line from a song at all. It’s my life.

It was an incredibly tough decision for me. For years I ate, drank and lived jazz, but I gave up immersing myself in that life to pursue a life in another drastically different (but no less promising) profession. Actually, economics promised to be decidedly more advantageous. After a long, difficult and brutally honest chat with myself, I concluded that I didn’t think I had enough natural talent to be a jazz musician. I didn't think I could make a life out of it let alone a living.

Making a life and making a living

Some would argue that there is a difference between making a life and making a living, and for these people, this may be true. However, I believe if you love what you do, there doesn’t have to be a distinction. I’m fortunate here. I loved playing the sax. I also love being an economist. I can’t deny that I gave up a life in jazz, but I don’t think I gave in to live a lesser life.

I still have my saxophone in my closet at home, and I sometimes think about what my life might have been like if I’d followed that road. This said, entertaining the hypothetical is human nature. If I’d decided to be a jazz musician, I’m sure I would have wondered what my life would have been like if I’d been an economist. Moreover, I don’t believe I’ve had to sacrifice one love for another. My life is busy and fulfilling. When it quiets down a bit, I’m sure I’ll dust off the saxophone and bust out some of my favourites, but for now, I've set my sights on helping to build the best future for Kingston. 

Posted on October 10, 2014 .