Funny story that’s appropriate for this group: Traveling back to the US from the UK after NYE, I was standing in line at US immigration and was called forward to a rather intimidating looking Customs and Border Protection Officer.

He goes through my passport, green card, scans my fingerprints, checks the computer screen and finally asks “Occupation?”
I say “Music Composer”

CBPO, gruffly, without looking up: And who do you do that for?
Me: I have my own company, I write music for film, TV and other media
CBPO still not looking up, still gruffly: Ok, I have a couple more questions…

Me, thinking – more questions???

CBPO purses lips, turns and leans in: Ok, so I’ve got this electronic keyboard at home and I want to start recording music. How can I do that?

(We discuss hooking it up to a computer, Garageband, DAWs and such…)
(Fast forward 60 seconds)

CBPO, thinking: But what if I want sounds that aren’t pre-loaded in the keyboard?

(We discuss sample libraries for 60 seconds or so)

CBPO, wave of realization sweeps over his face: I bet that’s really accelerated the composing process and deadlines!

Me: Yeah, it really has

CBPO, handing back passport and green card, sighs: Yeah, I’ve got to get back into music. My 14-year old wants to quit piano lessons and I want to get back into music to set an example for him. You’re lucky to do what you do. Well, welcome home.

In short, a heartfelt, real conversation with an unexpected person with a shared passion that made me feel, in CBPO’s words: lucky to do what I do.