“Spite is a great motivator”: Joe Bonamassa on how using the naysayers as motivation helped him climb to success
Joe Bonamassa has spoken about the journey to his “big break”, and how he used the doubts of others to fuel his ambition for music.
The blues rocker has just released his latest album, Blues Deluxe Vol. 2, which celebrates the 20th anniversary of the original Blues Deluxe album which landed in 2003. It hosts eight covers and two originals.
READ MORE: “I know it sounds weird, but if you’re stuck in a rut I always say, stop playing”: Joe Bonamassa on why he stepped away from long warm ups
Following the release of such a milestone record, what better time is there to reflect on that early slog to success? In an interview on the Tone Talk podcast, Bonamassa shared how age shouldn’t influence anybody to give up, and how he used spite as a great motivator.
“If I did one of those old fashioned – If my career doesn’t take off by the time I’m 30, I’m going to join the FBI or whatever…” he says (via Ultimate Guitar). “If I did that, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. I know some people, some of the views back then — great, should have quit a long time ago. My big break came four days before my 32nd birthday. You never know.”
He also later shared that climbing to success wasn’t the hardest part of his career, it was staying there. But the doubts of others are what fuelled the fire: “I know everybody’s a sceptic, everybody’s got advice, everybody has something to say when you’re coming up. ‘Well, maybe this isn’t for you. And they flex, and they do it to young musicians, and it shatters your confidence and stuff like that…
“Well, I can tell you, when you get to the top of the mountain and plant the flag, and you look down at those people – chances are they’re not in the business anymore. There’s no better feeling in the world. So spite is a great motivator.”
Watch the full interview below:
Get tickets to catch Joe Bonamassa on tour via his official website.
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