Devin Townsend has opened up about growing disillusioned with the music industry during the time he worked with Steve Vai. In an recent interview with the podcast Monsters, Madness and Magic, Townsend said that he felt like the industry was more interested in validating his talent than in helping him create music.
“I remember when I was working with Steve Vai, I was so disillusioned with the music industry at that point. It felt like it was all about validation. Like, ‘Can you play this? Can you play that?’ It wasn’t about creating music. It was about proving yourself.” Even though he was clear that it had nothing to do with Vai, saying: “It had very little to do with Steve. He’s offered me an incredible opportunity, it changed my life, and had set me up in a scenario where we’re talking today. So before I answer that further, it’s important that that’s a foregone conclusion there.”
Later on the interview, he added that the experience led him to take control of his own career, and helped him to release music on his own terms. “That’s not necessarily a bad thing in the long run. In fact, I think it worked in my favor, because I got that idealism out of the way quickly enough that, when I started to structure my work and my own creative endeavors later on, it was devoid of that, so my relationship tended to be a little more straight up. I’m not interested in validation anymore. I’m just interested in creating music that I love and that I think other people will love.”
Townsend is known for his eclectic and experimental music, which has earned him a dedicated following of fans. He is a unique and talented artist who is not afraid to speak his mind, and his music is a reflection of his own personal journey.
In recent years, Townsend has focused on his solo career, he has also collaborated with other artists, such as Anneke van Giersbergen and Mike Keneally, and most recently, this past August 4th, he released his new live album Devolution #3 – Empath Live In America.
Townsend comments about the music business are echoed by many other artists, as the industry is often perceived as this mechanism that is more interested in profit than in art, leading creators to grow frustrated and abandoned their own path.
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