Dave Grohl recently delivered the keynote address at the 2013 South By Southwest (SXSW) music, film, and media conference in Austin, TX. You can see his keynote in the YouTube clip below.
Anyone who is a fan of Grohl’s music knows that his performances as the drummer in Nirvana and the front man for the Foo Fighters are brilliant. However, as a professional speaker myself, I never expected him to be as brilliant as a keynote speaker. At SXSW though, he delivered a well-crafted, insightful and at times, hilarious speech about finding his voice through his music.
What impressed me most about Grohl’s presentation was that he recognized early in his life that music was his passion and he was singly focused in finding his voice through his music. Even when he had nowhere to live and no money in his pocket, he is quick to point out that he was still having fun – because he was doing what he loved.
He encouraged the people in the audience to find their passion and express their voices as well. He said that contrary to what “The Voice” and “American Idol” suggest, with their celebrity judges, there is no right or wrong way to play music or express yourself. Instead, he said, you can’t be true to yourself if you’re worried about what others will think or say.
This is a recurring theme with comedians, musicians, and other artists who rise to the top of their respective professions. They are clear about what they are supposed to do in life and they find a way to pursue their dreams even when they’re challenged by obstacles or critics along the way.
That’s the epitome of Do it Well, Make it Fun. These professionals work hard at perfecting their craft while enjoying the ride. It doesn’t get much better than that.