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  • Writer's pictureJohn Selzer

You Play Glockenspiel, I'll Play Drums

You might be the conductor, but you are nothing without an orchestra.

There has been a lot of debate lately about the concept of ‘self made’. The term often gets thrown around, mostly to general indifference (or possibly a gentle eye roll), but a recent use sent everyone into a tizzy. Can you be born into wealth, surrounded by fame – even with your own TV show, for God’s sake – and still wear this label?

Quite frankly, the whole concept is a farce (so simmer down and save your angst for something else). Unless you were born into and spent your entire life in a vacuum, you cannot be a self-made anything.

It is simply not possible.

At the highest level, we are a result of the genetic cocktail that forms our DNA. Sometimes you win the hereditary lottery; other times, not so much.

We are also a collection of the lessons and experiences we are exposed to through our parents, extended family, teachers, friends and those with whom our paths cross or intertwine.

Each one of our accomplishments, each and every step forward, bears the fingerprints of tens, hundreds and maybe even thousands of people. Not just yours.

An accomplishment like building a billion-dollar brand is impressive, no doubt. Very few can add that (legitimately) to their résumé. But unless you are currently, and have always been, the single employee, the only thing the ‘self’ can claim is credit.

And when you do, not only do you look like a self-centered ass, the reception you receive walking into the office Monday morning might be a little frosty.

Deservedly so.


After The Housemartins broke up in the late 80s, Paul Heaton and Dave Hemingway took their distinctive sound and formed The Beautiful South. And with it, they carried over their pop-infused vibe, but overlaid it with slightly heavier and sharp lyrics. This song is a good representation of what they accomplished. Solid musically, and with enough spice in the lyrics to keep it interesting.

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