It’s a standard turn of phrase – so standard I’m sure I’ve used it of the current phase of my life, though I can’t remember a specific instance – to say someone leaves a job / band / company / area, or just reduces their involvement in some way, ‘in order to focus on [something, at its loosest the classic ‘other projects’]’.
It would certainly seem reasonable to say I’m going part-time in my day job to focus on music, specifically paid engagements as a violinist and violist. And I have been trying to reintroduce discipline and consistency into my personal playing, instituting a ‘play something every day’ rule and setting about some fairly gruelling engagement with scales and studies.
But focusing on this, in any sense of making it key priority, is being hampered by two significant things at the minute. The first is that, no matter how good you sound, no one will pay you to play if they don’t firstly know you exist as a musician and secondly hear something of you. So thus far, ironically, in terms of my musical ‘career’, if I have one, marketing and promotion have necessarily taken precedence over polishing my actual music-making, though not to the total exclusion of the latter.
Second is that some practicalities refuse to be deferred to a convenient point in the narratives that may engage much more of your attention. Last night I discovered the deadline for me to move out of my current house, which I had believed on the evidence of the last written contact about it to be 12 September, has in fact moved up to the end of the month. That knocked the house plan I had been wrestling with on the head, and now I have under three weeks to find a room. Because a paid gig, or even a killer Soundcloud demo playlist, won’t seem a very good tradeoff sleeping on a friend’s sofa with nowhere to store my possessions (not that much but certainly too much to carry on my back!). So music has to lose the ‘focus’ to combing through ads, emailing and ringing people, and viewings / interviews, except in as far as I can do both. Bleuch.