I've been wanting to write a collection of short stories about bizarre moments I've had on stage, and I figured now was as good a time as any to do it. This week I'll be posting 5 of the most embarrassing/funny/painful music stories I have, starting with the gig that almost ended my career at age 10:
When I was 10, I got the bright idea to try and earn money playing piano. My mom offered to help, and "booked" me to play at a speaking engagement she was hired for the following week. It took some arm twisting, but the coordinator agreed to let me play after Mom had given her speech.
The big day came. I donned a suit, polished my best songs, and hopped in the minivan. After my mom spoke, I confidently walked up to the piano to play. The entire group exited to another room (coffee and cake beats music for most people). I started playing, undaunted by the lack of an audience. I didn't stop playing until 10 minutes later when they turned out the lights on me. I almost quit piano on the spot.
Takeaway: just because you can't find an audience early in your career, don't give up. Also, don't try to compete with food for attention.