I actually was reading a Medium article about this today and thought about the term. Largely because all those society considers ‘winners’ are often cheered, honoured, given praise or even rewards over their ingenuity. Instead, there are people who may excel in their field but remained hidden from the mainstream for long periods of time. Quietly excelling at what they do best.
It immediately made me think of the thousands of authors, producers, actors and creatives who are well known in their fields and may have a ‘cult’ status but no-one would know on the street. Instead of feeling disappointed, it was a giant relief.
I then thought about the musicians that I listen to on a daily basis and some of them are in that category. For example: Steven Wilson is a singer, songwriter and producer who has been going for almost as long as I’ve been born (since 1983) working on his own projects and others. Chugging away in the background inside his own studio, not bothering the mainstream for a long time.
Another is Tobe Nwigwe who’s been grinding away since 2017 with his own sound, vibe and bars and came to the fore this year with The Pandemic Project. Staunchly independent, his team of family and friends presents us with affirming raps, stories and struggles of growing up in Houston, Texas.
Finally, Kelechi Okafor might be well known amongst my peers as someone who is honest, powerfully outspoken and has a lot to offer (she’s an actress, writer, entrepreneur) but I also understand that her road has been a long since her podcast (Say Your Mind) started in December 2017.
The conclusion from all of this: not everyone will hit the lofty heights of the mainstream. Even though my inner teen might dislike I will never get to play Wembley stadium (or at least in the way I think I will) I am more content to touch the mainstream but not remain in it. I’m determined to make my own light shine for the good of others. I’m determined to live a life less ordinary be it observed or not.
Until next time everyone, #embraceinfinity folks.
Aquila Hope is a transformative coach, black trans activist, speaker, podcaster and songwriter. They’re found through Instagram, Twitter, Medium and their own website. Their podcast ‘Grasp At The Root’ can be found on Anchor, Spotify, Google Podcast, Apple Podcasts or wherever podcasts are distributed. Aquila lives on the outskirts of Birmingham, enjoys self improvement, creating music, good coffee and pizza.