It's an Inside Job

Notes of Reflection with Silje Nergaard: A Tale of Jazz and Inspiration.

April 01, 2024 Season 5 Episode 14
Notes of Reflection with Silje Nergaard: A Tale of Jazz and Inspiration.
It's an Inside Job
More Info
It's an Inside Job
Notes of Reflection with Silje Nergaard: A Tale of Jazz and Inspiration.
Apr 01, 2024 Season 5 Episode 14

In this episode, we sit down with jazz vocalist Silje Nergaard, a seasoned musician with over two decades of experience in the industry. Silje shares insights from her journey, offering a candid look at the realities of life as a jazz artist.

Silje reflects on her early days, reminiscing about how she first discovered her passion for music and embarked on her musical career. She discusses the challenges she faced along the way, from navigating the competitive music scene to finding her unique voice amidst a sea of talented performers.

Throughout the conversation, Silje opens up about her creative process and the inspiration behind her music. She shares anecdotes from her performances and recording sessions, shedding light on the highs and lows of life as a professional musician.

As the discussion unfolds, Silje touches on the importance of authenticity in her artistry. She emphasizes the value of staying true to oneself and finding one's own voice in a crowded industry.

In conclusion, our conversation with Silje Neergard offers a down-to-earth glimpse into the world of jazz music. Through her honesty and humility, Silje reminds us of the dedication and hard work that go into pursuing a career in music, while also celebrating the joy and fulfillment that come from following one's passion.

BIO
Silje Nergaard, a multi-award-winning Norwegian jazz vocalist, has made a significant mark on the global stage with 16 albums since her 1990 debut. Her career ignited at 16 during a spontaneous performance with the Jaco Pastorius Band, leading to immediate recognition as Norway's emerging jazz talent.

Her first single, "Tell me Where You’re Going," featuring guitar legend Pat Metheny, soared to international acclaim, especially in Japan, where it topped charts and inspired a wine named after her. "At First Light" (2001), Norway's best-selling jazz album ever, includes the hit "Be Still My Heart," cementing her status in jazz.

With a Grammy-nominated album, "A Thousand True Stories," and collaborations with stars like Al Jarreau and Pat Metheny, Nergaard's distinct voice and style have left an indelible imprint on jazz. Celebrating 30 years in music in 2020, she plans to release two albums and tour internationally, continuing to enchant audiences, particularly in Germany, her largest market.

CONTACT INFO:
Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/siljenergaardmusic/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/SiljeNergaard

DISKOGRAFI

  1. Tell Me Where You're Going (1990)
  2. Silje (1991)
  3. Cow On the Highway (1993)
  4. Brevet (1995)
  5. Hjemmefra (1996)
  6. Port of Call (2000)
  7. At First Light (2001)
  8. Nightwatch (2003)
  9. Be Still My Heart - The Essential (2005)
  10. Darkness Out of Blue (2007)
  11. A Thousand True Stories (2009)
  12. If I Could Wrap Up a Kiss (2010)
  13. Unclouded (2012)
  14. Chain of Days (2015)
  15. For you a thousand times (2017)
  16. Hamar Railway Station/Hamar Stasjon(2020)
  17. Japanese Blue (2020)
  18. Houses (2021)

Tags

jazz singer, Silje Nedgaard, creativity, resilience, navigating a creative career, personal connections, inner creativity, social media, breaks in the creative process, mystica

Support the Show.


Sign up for the weekly IT'S AN INSIDE JOB NEWSLETTER

  • takes 5 seconds to fill out
  • receive a fresh update every Wednesday
It's an Inside Job +
Help us continue making great content for listeners everywhere.
Starting at $3/month
Support
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

In this episode, we sit down with jazz vocalist Silje Nergaard, a seasoned musician with over two decades of experience in the industry. Silje shares insights from her journey, offering a candid look at the realities of life as a jazz artist.

Silje reflects on her early days, reminiscing about how she first discovered her passion for music and embarked on her musical career. She discusses the challenges she faced along the way, from navigating the competitive music scene to finding her unique voice amidst a sea of talented performers.

Throughout the conversation, Silje opens up about her creative process and the inspiration behind her music. She shares anecdotes from her performances and recording sessions, shedding light on the highs and lows of life as a professional musician.

As the discussion unfolds, Silje touches on the importance of authenticity in her artistry. She emphasizes the value of staying true to oneself and finding one's own voice in a crowded industry.

In conclusion, our conversation with Silje Neergard offers a down-to-earth glimpse into the world of jazz music. Through her honesty and humility, Silje reminds us of the dedication and hard work that go into pursuing a career in music, while also celebrating the joy and fulfillment that come from following one's passion.

BIO
Silje Nergaard, a multi-award-winning Norwegian jazz vocalist, has made a significant mark on the global stage with 16 albums since her 1990 debut. Her career ignited at 16 during a spontaneous performance with the Jaco Pastorius Band, leading to immediate recognition as Norway's emerging jazz talent.

Her first single, "Tell me Where You’re Going," featuring guitar legend Pat Metheny, soared to international acclaim, especially in Japan, where it topped charts and inspired a wine named after her. "At First Light" (2001), Norway's best-selling jazz album ever, includes the hit "Be Still My Heart," cementing her status in jazz.

With a Grammy-nominated album, "A Thousand True Stories," and collaborations with stars like Al Jarreau and Pat Metheny, Nergaard's distinct voice and style have left an indelible imprint on jazz. Celebrating 30 years in music in 2020, she plans to release two albums and tour internationally, continuing to enchant audiences, particularly in Germany, her largest market.

CONTACT INFO:
Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/siljenergaardmusic/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/SiljeNergaard

DISKOGRAFI

  1. Tell Me Where You're Going (1990)
  2. Silje (1991)
  3. Cow On the Highway (1993)
  4. Brevet (1995)
  5. Hjemmefra (1996)
  6. Port of Call (2000)
  7. At First Light (2001)
  8. Nightwatch (2003)
  9. Be Still My Heart - The Essential (2005)
  10. Darkness Out of Blue (2007)
  11. A Thousand True Stories (2009)
  12. If I Could Wrap Up a Kiss (2010)
  13. Unclouded (2012)
  14. Chain of Days (2015)
  15. For you a thousand times (2017)
  16. Hamar Railway Station/Hamar Stasjon(2020)
  17. Japanese Blue (2020)
  18. Houses (2021)

Tags

jazz singer, Silje Nedgaard, creativity, resilience, navigating a creative career, personal connections, inner creativity, social media, breaks in the creative process, mystica

Support the Show.


Sign up for the weekly IT'S AN INSIDE JOB NEWSLETTER

  • takes 5 seconds to fill out
  • receive a fresh update every Wednesday

Transcript


[0:00] Music. 

Introduction to It's an Inside Job podcast


[0:09] Back to It's an Inside Job podcast. I'm your host, Jason Liem.
Now, this podcast is dedicated to helping you to help yourself and others to become more mentally and emotionallyresilient so you can be better at bouncing back from life's inevitable setbacks.
Now, on It's an Inside Job, we decode the science and stories of resilience into practical advice, skills, and strategies thatyou can use to impact your life and those around you.
Now, with that said, let's slip into the stream.

[0:37] Music. 

Introducing Silje  Nergaard, Norway's Top Jazz Singer


[0:45] Well, folks, welcome back to the show. Welcome back to It's an Inside Job.
I'm your host, Jason Liem. This week, I have a special episode for you guys.
I have one of Norway's top jazz singers in the house with me today.
She's recognized here in Norway, but also internationally.
Her name is Silje Nergaard. Silje is a multi-award-winning Norwegian jazz vocalist and has made a significant mark onthe global stage with 20 albums since her 1990 debut.
Her career ignited at the age of 16 during a spontaneous performance with the Jakob Pistorius Band, leading to immediaterecognition as Norway's emerging jazz talent.
Her first single, Tell Me Where You're Going, featuring guitar legend Pat Metheny, soared to international acclaim,especially in Japan, where it topped charts and inspired a wine named after her.
At first light in 2001, Norway's best-selling jazz album ever includes the hit Be Still My Heart, cementing her status injazz.
With a Grammy-nominated album, A Thousand True Stories, and collaborations with stars like Al Jarreau, Pat Metheny,Nagort's distinct voice and style have left an indelible imprint on jazz.
So in today's conversation, Celia is going to dive deep into the heart of creativity and resilience and the undulatingjourney of a creative career.

[2:06] Now, Celia opens up about the intrinsic power of inner creativity as the true compass in navigating the unpredictableterrain of artistic endeavors.
With candid reflections on dealing with rejection, the importance of maintaining a connection to one's creative core, andthe disciplined pursuit of inspiration. inspiration.
This conversation offers invaluable insights into the essence of being a creator.
We are also going to explore the significance of self-worth rooted in the creative process, the discipline behind tappinginto one's artistic energy, and the grace of self-compassion through the creative highs and lows.
So now let's slip into the stream and.

[2:43] Music. 

Introducing Celia Niergaard: Singer and Composer


[2:57] Hey Celia, welcome to the show. A lot of people in Norway know you, and probably internationally too.
But irregardless, I was wondering if you could introduce yourself and what you do.
I am Celia Niergaard. I am a singer and a composer.
And I have been traveling around the world with my music since, well, I must say maybe about 30 years now.
And I mainly work in the jazz international jazz scene and well yes I'd say that's a summary I have released 20 albumsand still working on new songs songs so this has been uh my profession and my life for the last you've got quite a historyof 20 albums such is there a favorite that kind of pops out into your mind your own personal favorite yeah you knowwhen people ask me things like that i i don't have an immediate answer but i remember always the ones that were like thefirst one in some like the very first one of of course.

[4:16] Which was like having...
Doing it for the first time was very special. I remember the first one I did in Norwegian, a few things like that, and alsoone with the Metropole Orchestra that I did that I'm very proud of. It was the first time with an orchestra.
So all these things that you've never done before, it was very exciting.
I like my job. It's very unpredictable, though.

[4:46] Yeah, I'm sure it is. is I'm sure it is and I'm sure your your rise to the pinnacle of your profession hasn't always beeneasy and I think I wanted to have you on Celia because we have mutual friend Yannicka and at the same time it's I'd liketo explore your career but I think from the perspective of a lot of young people are going to be listening to this or youngtalents and they're coming through whatever it is and maybe music, maybe they're an athlete, maybe they specialize insome specific discipline, but for them, it's a long road. There's a lot of challenges.
There's a lot of, you know, roadblocks and things that they have to deal with mindsets and injuries and what have you.
And I think part of this conversation I'd like to explore with you is understanding how you have come through your ownadversity, how you deal with challenges and upsets.
But at the same time, I think part of talking about resilience is how do you deal with success?
Because a lot of people, when success is thrust on them, they don't know how to use it or they don't know how to adapt toit.

[5:55] I was wondering, in your career, I mean, what have you found that's been kind of hard for yourself to get through?
I mean, is there a story you could maybe we can begin and kick off this conversation with?
Well, you know, when I think, I mean, I'm still doing this and there's been doors closed, doors open.
That's on the outside field, right?
And so in the beginning, maybe I thought that, oh, if they reject me, then, you know, it might, that's it.
But I think I early on learned that the motor, you know, the engine is within me.
And yeah.

[6:53] I learned early that when you close your door into your creativity, when you lose your passion, when you don't haveanything more to say, that's when the door is going to close for you.
But as long as you have something on your mind and something you want to create and share, in some way you have theenergy to get it through.
True but i learned that i had to be prepared that uh that it would be a bumpy road and as you said some people sometimeswhen you have success you go downhill and then it stops and you go uphill again and as long as you're connected to yourinner creativity which is the real like the real reason why you're in this crazy game as long as you can connect and go intothat world and put a light on that um then you can always always kind of um find back to the the energy within you to bein those periods this is how i i learned to live with.

[8:06] Live with it because of course for me I'm not starting out but when I look back of course it hasn't always been easyor I've had to you know push myself through a little bit sometimes you know that's what the game is.
And you started your career around 16-17 years old is that correct i started off by um by writing songs when i was uh like9 10 11 years old we had a piano and then i just wrote little songs and then started to sing in a choir.

[8:45] In my hometown and then i got the microphone and i well i had the solo and from then on i started to i wasinterested in jazz because i grew up in in a house with jazz but also all kinds of music, ABBA and everything, hip-hop.
But I learned that, you know, I was learning about, I didn't learn about genre because they were all in my house.
My parents loved music and my father played the guitar.
So I was singing a lot with him.
And when I finished school at 19 or 18, then I moved to Oslo.
And the plan was to study music, but I dropped that plan because I was full of energy, and I started a band instead.
And I started...

[9:36] In some way, I made myself out there touring in little clubs.
Because coming back to your sort of the connecting with your inner creativity, you know, as you said, you've been in thegame for about 30 years and, you know, you've built knowledge and wisdom and ways of, you know, dealing with successand adversity.
But as an 18, 19, 20 year old, how was it for you?
I mean, obviously, you had to face challenges and sometimes those challenges, you took a hit, maybe psychologically oryou felt a little down or a little defeated sometimes.
You know, as the woman I'm talking to now, you have all that experience to reflect on and you can pull that to help you,you know, embrace the storm.
But back then, you know, as the young, young, young woman, how did you deal?
How did you find the inner creativity? Did you sometimes lose it?
Was there someone that helped you was wondering if you could maybe walk us through maybe what you did when if youcan reflect back, well i remember i was having an inner drive and i was um i was not afraid of, um approaching people.

[10:53] And that is i think a very important part of, um my um i mean my my voyage in a way that i met people and i wasnot afraid to to um approach them and ask them for um advice or if they would play with me or um and yeah i wasn'tafraid of people and I think I wasn't afraid of a no because I didn't mix the no's from people that people rejecting me theymight say I don't want to help you.
I didn't connect that to my me as a person in some way I was a bit confident about myself and I was thinking okay, I stillthink that song is good if you don't want to play my song it's it's still So that I think helped me a lot not to take it sopersonally.

[11:59] I think that's a very interesting sort of the mind talk.
The thing that you told yourself is that when you got a no, you didn't take it as a personal hit.
And that separation between the no, it was no to the request and not no to you as the person.
And that kind of shielded you, that kind of fortified you, that made you resilient in that sense.
I think I rehearsed it with the boyfriends.

[12:27] When i was rejected i think oh well sorry for you, you're lost yeah you're lost okay but that's very interesting that'svery interesting and so as you as you progress and such so you had the courage to approach people to talk to people to askthem if they'd like to jam with you or play with you and if they said no you didn't take it personal it was a no to therequest and not no to the person and this this kind of has fortified you over the years and allowed you to keep going yesthat's very interesting that's i think this is when i think about it now and i have an idea in my head now uh but i'm thinkingwho where am i going to start talking to who and who's and then that person may you know help me through to anotherwho or you know I work that in a way I work in a personal way and to me that's more inspiring than and also that's whatmakes things happen because I've learned that if I wanted to ask somebody of my heroes and I've been performing with afew of my big heroes, like Al Jarreau and Pat Metheny and Morten Harket from Aha, but he lives down the road so that Iwould meet him in the cafe so the.

Approaching Heroes for Collaboration


[13:56] I could never get any of those by going through a management, you know, because I was not Beyonce for them.
I was, you know, I was just, I would have to approach them personally and I would have to have a personal, a musicalidea that was good.
I think it's always about not me saying, Hey, wouldn't be great if we work together.
No, it would be, Hey, look, look, I have a song and I've written it with you in mind.
I feel that you're all over it. And can you listen to it? Because it would have been great.
And I always thought that in music we're all equal.

[14:41] I know that some of us are more successful and some are very famous and some are not.
You're still in the music, in art.
We all meet in the same place so if i was able to touch them with my song and they knew that it was it came from anhonest place in me then maybe that that would be a way to make a nice cooperation and that worked but i had to approachthem so you need to go i think use your like, be the whole human being while you want something things.
I think that's a very interesting thing you're saying, because as you said, when you approach a person, it's not about youper se, but you, as you said, you wrote a song with a person in mind and you asked them to listen to it and what theythink.
I think that's a very strong character or character trait that a lot of people may are trying to develop.
Because obviously you you have to show a sense of vulnerability.
You have to go to the courage to approach your, your heroes, your idols that you've seen all these three people you'vementioned. And obviously.

[15:56] But I'm curious because I think that's very, very interesting because that would suggest that you have a very strongmindset that there's not the fragility there.
Because a lot of people can be very scared to approach, especially famous people, if we can characterize them that, tohelp them or to play with them.
And so where do you think you picked up this mindset? Was it something you picked up from your parents?
Is it something that's always been part of you, Celia?
Yeah I've been wondering um because people do actually ask me oh how could you how did you dare and how did youhave the courage to to do this and that and uh for me it wasn't that I was thinking I was courageous but again I felt that Iwas connected to some self-worth that I thought oh I I know the feeling when I got it I know and I got disappointed but Ididn't put that into the the world and that didn't become me as a person being rejected so in some way i've always felt umthat i am loved in some way i felt that i am loved although he might not or she might not want to do this i'm still okay.

Shielding Self-Worth from Rejection and Criticism


[17:12] And and i'm not i mean that's probably uh a fortunate thing since that i have with me already from my childhoodand i felt connected to some place inside that was um protected protected yeah yes a protected place that was where the soso inside of you just understand so inside of you you felt there was a inner part of you that was shielded from sort ofnegativity or of criticism And this protection or this shielding around your self-worth, it allowed these negative bullets tokind of bounce off and it didn't affect you.
You learned to shield yourself from the negativity or the rejection.
It affected me because you get sometimes disappointed and that don't work out and they become hard and difficult.
But I would always go back to this place, which also is the place of creativity. Thank you.

[18:14] So and also when things didn't like sometimes in your career you don't feel that you are very important out thereyou know maybe you make an album and a nobody maybe well not many people heard it or wrote about it or maybedidn't do well you know and that's the same thing if you make that become you not being you know you have to protectthat part and in and always come back to you know where where did it all start it started within me and this is mycreativity and this is my gift and this is the reality of being a creative person that it's you know don't don't do it.
I didn't start it off to become successful.
It would be great if it was, but it's not that that makes me create.
It's the creativity itself and that it must be a shielded place.

[19:15] So I understand what it is. It's in the creation of an album.
That's where the creativity lies. That's where the value lies.
That's the effort that you put in.
And it's not the outcome of how many sales or how many people listen to it i mean that's important that's great but thatoutcome is not linked or you separate the outcome and that's not linked to your self-worth your self-worth comes into theeffort or the creativity or the songwriting what you do to put it all together and the outcome is just the outcome how howit plays out is important but it's not as important as affecting your self-worth is that what i understand no because thatoutcome is out out of my control, right?

[19:58] So the creating of the music, it's what it's all about.
And that part is what makes me feel genuinely like in contact with.

[20:12] What I'm what why I do this in the first place so it's the process it's the process that's important but of course I'mnot a robot so if nobody was going to listen to my albums for 20 albums of course it would have affected me in some waybut it's less you know it's an other part of it and then you have to deal with other parts of you when you come to that andso I'm I'm just curious, how do you, like, maybe you can walk us through to the detail you can.
How do you tap into your inner creativity? How do you go into that shielding and sort of into your self-worth, into yourinner creativity? Is it something you say?
Is it a certain emotion? Is it a ritual or routine you do?
Oh, interesting. I never had that question.
Welcome to the show.

[21:08] Oh wow i think that's just setting i have i think.

[21:16] You know i've always been i've always in some way i remember from also a child i remember i've always beenhappy leaving something or some place or if i didn't feel i i was leaving for going back to my own place you knowyesterday i actually left the concert because i didn't enjoy it but i left it because i feel that hey i need to this is this i i haveto go back to my my own like the the world of my own i'm doing it in different ways all the time and it's like i like to bewith me in my world and that's always like it's like it's a lot of energy in there and it's There's a lot of, it's bubbling.

Finding solace in your own world of creativity


[22:05] It's exciting.
It's a bit of a magic, you know, to go into that shielded place.
And I could do it any time or I could physically just leave.
And I think in some way this made me a bit protected to the outside, whatever was going on.
I knew that I could go and get my back my my energy and my you know positive thinking and.

[22:40] My fantasy would be, you know, yeah.
I don't know if I can express this in English. No, no, you've expressed it quite well.
So your inner self, that beyond in the shielding, going back to your self-worth, there's a bubbling, there's an energy, there'sa vibrancy that you can turn into.
So even if the world outside is chaotic or crazy, you can go back into yourself and find that sort of, that centeredness, thatsort of gravitas where you feel grounded you're you feel you feel the energy and the bubbling and that that kind of feedsyou is it something you sometimes say to yourself like Celia like if if something's going crazy outside whateverenvironment like a bad concert or whatever do you do you kind of think I'm out of here or okay I mean do you saysomething to yourself to kind of go in or is it just sort of an you've done it so long that it's just an an automated habit thatyou that just happens automatically i never said that to myself no because and you're the first one to ask me about it so it'sjust i'm connected to it and i can go there and and then everything is justified it's okay it's like i have a a light um, shiningin and it will always be shining there um that doesn't mean that that it's always bubbling a creativity there.

[24:09] Because I've also had periods, when we talk about creating and stuff, then I've always had periods, and just nowactually a couple of years, where I have not been writing.

[24:21] And that's also interesting, not to punish myself for that.
And also I know that.

[24:35] If this is you know a subject for the conversation that when you don't create it's also an interesting place tounderstand that you create while you don't create if you are a creative person, but you also I've learned to also be a bitkind to myself if I'm not producing all the time.

[25:00] And I think there's a reason for that. So what I hear is when you're not creating, when you're not writing, whenyou're not scripting songs, that that's okay.
You show yourself self-compassion. You don't have to constantly be performing or creating new material.
That it's okay to take a break and pause for a while.
Is that what I understand? Yes, but of course there is an inner, like a little fear.
Fear I've always had that fear that said that was you know uh saying um oh now it's over now you can't write a song againso I'm always a little bit connected to that oh now that's it um so it's also it's not comfortable I think many people thatwrite in books or whatever and they don't write they think maybe it's over for good and i always feel that too but anotherpart of me is is thinking it's like i say like johnny mitchell no no it's not gone it's just gone on the ground, nice i like thatyeah i i use that sentence a lot because and then i choose to believe that it's bubbling and something is going on there andi'm not really part of it but it's going to show, So because I'm going to I look for it in some way and then it's going to showit's going to come back.

Overcoming the fear of running out of creativity


[26:26] So so over your 30 year career, this fear of this was my last song or I can't write again, it kind of bubbles up.
But then there's another part of you that says, no, we keep going.
There is. And you go back into the inner creativity, into that sort of self-worth.
And that allows you to override that fear is that what i understand, i also yes and i also learned that it's a muscle it's amuscle like running and everything and it's a muscle you have to keep it you know um keep it strong and um i learnedthat because i don't believe all that much in being inspired okay can you expand on that, Yes. Well...

[27:18] I thought maybe in the early years that, oh, to write songs, it's like waking up in the middle of the night and it's likelighting a candle and then there's this great line.
Then you write Long and Binding Road or something in the middle of the night.
For me, it became I need to find it.
I need to search for music and the melodies. And if I'm right now sitting here waiting for me to be inspired, I'm not goingto walk to that piano.
So I need to make a decision that this is what I do.
And then I sit down and I just play a record and I can be super bored, actually.

[28:04] But the way I work is I just record maybe for like half an hour or something, record melodies.
Melodies and and um and then i just keep creating and then uh later on i would listen to it and see if there's a little littleline little melody that has some magic to it and then i will start composing around it um but i just wanted to well i'velearned for me at least that i i i can't expect that it's going to be oh i'm so inspired i'm going to go to my piano no it's aboutthis is actually my job i write songs and i i have a muscle writing songs and now when i was starting to write a song aftertwo years my muscle was so i got so exhausted from how do you do this oh i'm gonna have to think about the whole thingand and then i know that was very interesting I was out of it.

Struggling with Pressure to Create Another Hit


[29:08] I remember I had a period when I lived in London for two years that I had hit single when I started off, and theneverybody wanted me to write another hit single, which is really not a good, you know, that doesn't make the creativitybubble up because you have the pressure.
So I stopped writing, and then one evening, but I did do a little bit for my self-respect.
I went to the piano a little bit every morning and just recorded a few lines and little melodies just for five minutes just tofeel that I was I had like I did something right but it was super boring and I felt I was you know I didn't feel very it wasn'tvery happening but I recorded it and then one evening I saw a program on tv with Elton John and Bernie Turpin andBernie Turpin is his lyricist and they wrote yeah and they wrote like all the songs like your song and daniel and all theseclassic and they had this fantastic.

[30:12] Thing in cooperation and and i watched that show or the tv program and i was super inspired and i felt now it'scoming back to me i'm so inspired and i i sat down i was writing you know for two two hours and recorded that.
And I felt that was great.
Thank you, it's back. And then I listened to it the next day.
And do you know, that was what I did that evening.
It made no sense. There was nothing that was interesting about it.
But the little things I did every day when I was bored and felt worthless, then I found some beautiful, magic little phrases.
Places so that was kind of I was learning that to be uh how do you say that in drunk not drunk but when you're like yeahbut but drunk on passion or I was drunk on oh my god I feel so inspired but that fooled me I wasn't doing any so I don'tthat's what I'm saying I don't really really believe in that kind of inspiration you need to find it again within but of courseit helps to have um an idea and uh and then the direction a direction that also is i think for me very good but.

[31:38] Once you have an idea, which hopefully is an inspiring idea, you need to think of it as a muscle and you need to doit every day, regardless of how, well, bored or how, you know, how you might feel about it.
I think there's two things there that are very important.
You know the first is you did not let your mood dictate your action meaning that you know if you were a little uninspiredyou would still go up and do something for five or ten minutes and i think the other thing that i found very fascinatingwhich which is a very healthy cognitive uh skill is the idea of discipline it's the idea of getting up so even if you don't feelinspired if you don't feel motivated if you don't feel the hunger to do it you got up even if it was just five minutes youwrote something you hit the keys you did whatever but it was a consistency and a predictability in which you establisheda mental habit at a certain time or certain point of the day you would get up irregardless of your mood i think those twoseparate things as you said that that ability to get up was like building a muscle you kept it strong you kept it lean youkept it tense.

[32:56] I just wanted to parse that apart because I think those are two very important things because a lot of people, a lot ofus dictate our actions based on our mood.
So if I'm motivated, I'll go for a run. If I'm not motivated, I'm not going to go for a run. But why not?
Because you had a shitty day, Jason? No, get up and go.
Is that what I understand you're saying? Yes, yes. Right. So the run will be the one that dictates your mood again, right? Ifso...

[33:22] Yeah the action it needs to be just an action not put a lot of things into it oh I don't feel well you just do it becauseyou just do it and at least do it for a little while you don't have to be like nasty and but that's me um I guess it's I also thinkthat when you do it for a little well you have a self-respect about it and then I think subconsciously your creativity worksthe rest of the day because we create while we we don't create um I write songs and I write I spend many months on asong and I know that when I write a little bit I need the time to be uh away for it because it sort of uh develops within meas i walk as i know you know do my dishes i need that you know it's a long like an ice yeah it's like a it's a journey rightit's a sojourn so the subconscious need to make some decisions and then so i need to do it over time and that's sointeresting because i also respect the non-doing part of being creative.

[34:37] Music. 

Navigating the Creative Journey: Inner Creativity and Resilience


[34:45] In the first part of the episode celia shares profound insights on navigating the unpredictable journey of a creativecareer emphasizing the significance of inner creativity she reveals that understanding and tapping into this internal enginewhile it's crucial for enduring the the inevitable rejections and setbacks, the journey is depicted as a series of ups anddowns where maintaining connection to one's creative core, while it's essential for sustained motivation and resilience.

[35:16] Our discussion further explores how Celia developed a healthy perspective towards rejection, distinguishing it frompersonal failure, and instead viewing it as part of the process.
This mindset was bolstered by an inherent confidence and a deep sense of self-worth, rooted in creativity rather thanexternal validations, such as sales of her albums or the popularity or how many listeners listen to her album.
She credits a lifelong feeling of being loved and an inner sanctuary of creativity that offers protection and inspiration,allowing her to consistently return to her creative origins and to maintain her self-worth independent of externaloutcomes.

[35:59] Tapping into creativity is described by Celia as a deliberate and disciplined practice akin to exercising a muscle.Celia emphasizes the importance of daily routines such as playing the piano to foster creativity regardless of mood orimmediate inspiration.
This disciplined approach helps her discover magical moments and phrases in music, underscoring that dedication anddiscipline are key to nurturing creativity.
Self-compassion is highlighted as an important aspect of her process, allowing her kindness towards oneself during lessproductive periods, without fear of permanently losing creativity.
Now, this balanced approach to creativity, resilience, and self-compassion, well, it outlines a holistic approach, a holisticperspective on navigating a career in the arts, focusing on the journey and the process over the final product or outcome.
So now let's slip back into the stream for part two with the Vibrant Celia Network.

[36:57] Music. 

Finding Inspiration Outside of Songwriting


[37:08] And that's like going for a ski or going for a run something that's not around songwriting per se but if you're doingsomething completely else that might be exercise or it might be whatever in your day just being in your day that thing willlive in you while you you do your dishes or, you know, it will live in you.
And I think you can't always, and then you can't push a decision on something.
And I'm sure writers also will acknowledge this, that I can't see if this word or that word is better, but I leave it and it willsubconsciously, it will come through, you know?

[37:54] I think that's fascinating. So let me understand. So you'll write, initially you'll write down some thoughts for a songor put down some notes and such.
And that's the initial stage that you have that creative process.
But part of the creative process is not being creative.
That's going about your day. And so what I hear you saying, Celia, and please correct me if I'm wrong, you allow yourmind to kind of, like you're focusing on something else, but your subconscious, your unconscious mind mind is kind ofgrinding away playing with what you've inputted and then the next day it becomes an iterative process you come back andyou might fix things you might change things you might eliminate things or what have you you do that for a while yeahbut then you're at peace with that and then you walk away and and so it repeats where you're you're doing somethingyou're creating something and then you take a break allowing understanding that you're a lot of the creative to processhappens on the non-conscious level is that what i i'm kind of picking up yes.

[38:57] That's a very important part of the getting to the goal of it like getting the song done i know i can't make all thedecisions there so for me i use uh walking a lot and i could also bring the music in the headphones and I can listen to itwhile walking because I think that while you walk you're not focusing on the song but I listen to it and I walk and thensomething reacts in me that I'm not yes I'm not in charge of the reaction because I'm walking I'm doing something elseand then I react and then I oh and then maybe I do that again again say oh that's the answer so So sometimes I just listento it in my head, the song, or I bring it on headphones while I walk.
So I don't make decisions. I just let it sort of develop while doing other things.

Navigating Social Media and Self-Worth


[39:56] Again, I find that fascinating, especially in the context of, you know, today's world where young people arebombarded by social media.
And what I hear you, Celia, says, you know, you're constantly focused on the process, on the creativity, understanding it'snot a snap of the fingers, that it's something you come back to time and time again, correct, eliminate, add, what have you.
And that you're focused on the process, the journey to sojourn and the outcome.
Although the outcome is important, as you articulated earlier in this conversation, and there are so many factors that caninfluence that outcome, you can't connect.
And it's not healthy for you to connect your self-worth based on that outcome. If it's success, great.
You know, you feel elated. But if it doesn't work out, you feel, but you don't sit with it. You don't stew in the negativeemotions or the uncomfortable emotions. You learn from that.

[40:52] I just want to kind of bridge, you know, a lot because of social media, the number of likes or the hearts or whatever,you know, we get, we can.
And I think it's some sort of social engineering from these companies that a lot of people base their self-worth, their netvalue based on how many people have seen their post or liked and such.
I was wondering, how do you see yourself or younger musicians in this light of social media and such?

[41:27] Yeah i you know when i talk about my creativity and my life it's you know i grew up without the social media sothere was an other um peace in the surrounding around me and i i am i must say the first thing that you lose from thesocial media is to be focused over time and you know because it can be very boring and if if you not grow up and you'rebored you can just push a button and you're entertained and so you lose that part of it that when you're sitting you're sobored um and that is a muscle you need to bring in while you are creative you have to be bored um you have to sit with itum so i can see that as a first like sign of the oh how are they going to you know keep that consistency is that what yousay yeah yes yes.

[42:44] And also, you know, that's why I'm not sure what I can tell the young people.
I have a daughter and she's a great talent as a singer.
And I don't know what I can advise her to do except for saying, you know, you have to row your own boat the rest of yourlife.
You have to row your boat.
And how you do it, that's really up to you.
But I know that she's disturbed by so many like a noise that I was protected I was more quiet around me you knowstarting off I didn't have to get the heart or the thumbs up.

[43:31] To feel I was you know because there was no place I could like share my things like she would do right um so um ithink that is you have to be very have a very um strong inner world to um be now to store it you know to be you have tostand stand up to the criticisms or the light because you get it and um they have to be so like things have to they have tobe so great at everything um so so quickly i have an example for i was they took uh i was a talent as a they and thenorwegian broadcast thought i was a talent so they let me come on television, and i was singing again and again i i washad the chance to perform a song but i i was holding my microphone in front of my nose.

[44:33] And and they said you know and then again I tried to put it down so that but I forgot it and when I look at it I waslike they they let me do that and I didn't look very professional but when I but I still got the chance to come back sing asong at NRK with my I was hiding my face but now when I look at the young kids and they're on tv for the first timethey're already professional they know where to look the camera is there to left and right and do they move right and theywear the right clothes and it's all like, so if I was now I wouldn't have I couldn't have you know I would have been cut off.

[45:18] I wouldn't have had the chance to keep going. And that's a bit sad, right?
Because I had a personality, but I wouldn't have fit into the frame of being, you know, perfect in all the other ways.
So I think it's a lot of things that it's demanding if you're going to.
No, I think you made such a, you know, a valid point because I remember during COVID and everyone was kind ofstressed out and they were going on social media.
And, you know, we can call it doom scrolling or detoxing from news.
And sometimes that's what you need to do is just like turn off the apps and such.
And again, that's easier to save than to do because these doom scrolling or looking for constantly the outcome of things,how many likes I get, that actually eats at the self-worth.
You know, that shielding that you have, Celia, around your things, that's almost like if it was rusting, right?
It was falling apart. part.
And I think, you know, I think we were very fortunate to be born in the last millennium. And we were, you know, theworld was just in a way where there was, there was no immediate gratification.
There wasn't immediate, I can post this, can do this, I get this, these likes, right?

[46:32] And I find it, even with my own kids, you know, I've been able to minimize, and my wife, how much social mediathey have, but you can't control that.
I mean, they are teenagers and and they will do it, but I'm constantly having this conversation with them.
And it comes back to a lot of the elements that you talked about.
It's like, focus on the process, focus on the effort.
You know, if my kids come home and say, dad, I didn't do too well on the math test. And I'll ask them.

Effort and Consistency in Pursuit of Excellence


[47:01] That's okay. But how do you feel about the effort you put in?
Dad, I really, really tried hard and I studied and, but I still didn't make the grade.
And I said, you know, the grade at the end of the day, everyone's going to forget that, you know, a year from now.
But what's important is i think coming back to what you said celia i go up to the piano or i write the i write the notes or iwrite the some songs five minutes ten minutes even though i don't have the mood i do it but it's the effort because you'rewhat it sounds like you've built up mental habit over years the discipline the consistency which adds to the creativitybecause from what i understand creativity i guess in some cases it is it just pops up but you're saying the quality the workcame through the consistency and like that elton john tv show you saw that you thought you were inspired but the nextday it's like yeah what is this i was fooled by my inspiration feeling of hi you know yeah but you know talk about thephone thing um it's made the phone is It's made us addicted or the children are addicted to it.
And I can't blame them because that's how they made these apps, right?
So the only thing I can say to the young people is that you have to put your phone in another room.

[48:24] Because I don't blame them for like, oh, I'm bored. I'm searching for my phone because that's also a muscle you'reused to, right?
Well said. so the only way you can be free is to actually turn it off or put it in another room then you protect yourselfphysically from the interruption.

[48:46] Well if we just shift the conversation you know when it comes to stress and pressure how do you deal with sort ofmounting stress and pressure and the uncertainty that your that your field has You need to perform like as you said when Ihad to write that second that second single hits, You know, how do you deal with certain that that sort of external pressureon you sometimes and you all maybe it's like, okay How's this gonna play out?
How are people gonna think or is this coming back to what we've already discussed?
Mm-hmm well, yes, I have this shielded place I can go to but I've also learned, when it gets you know pressure means tome overload of information that you can't deal with it because it's a bit messy right that's what i think is uh uh pressurethat i it's too many, you know too many imports coming in yeah and and uh how yeah so i think i'm trying to learn to gofrom A to B to C to D to read it up to you know make it a bit more tidy and then.

Trusting the Process: Focusing on the Present


[50:03] That when people are like screaming like yeah you gotta do this and that and then I try to think of it as I will get tothe last letter in the alphabet but I just try and focus focus on the a and then the b i just try to um so you you focus on themost the the most the closest step the closest letter you're not worried about the end game you're just focused on what youhave to do now to get to the next step so i focus on i trust the process you trust the process yes Trust the process.

[50:43] No, that's a very good quote. Trust the process.
Yes. But is this the process that you've had to learn over the time?
Is it something that your parents taught you? Is it something that, again, came naturally to you just through experience,trial and error?
No, I didn't learn this from my parents. I think it's something that is within me because I have a creativity.
I have something to share.
I have a mission. I think I'm born with, you know, a mission to share and to make these songs.
That's my talent. That's my – I was given this.
And that very early became a world I connected to.

Managing Success and Staying Grounded


[51:34] You received lots of success at an early age and sometimes success can bowl people over.
It can knock them over. They don't know how to deal with it.
How have you dealt with repeated successes over your life, over your career?
Well, um, Yeah, you know, success, it looks very, oh, when you see somebody in paper or on TV, it just looks like success.
But that's just a little glimpse of what you do that day, right?
So I've always felt that this is, right now, it's a lot of good news, but I do the same thing every day.
Maybe it's easy for me to make a phone call and people will be positive and stuff but.

[52:33] It it's not like when you have a success you just uh cool it in between the you just do this oh i like that uh thatsaying from sinatra i think that they somebody asked him then and how about his success and how he just suddenly justhad this success yeah and that was for him and he said well it took me 15 years to have this success so it like it's so muchbehind uh behind it all the time so when you look at Beyonce she's a success but she's working so hard art every day thosepeople are just like so devoted yeah i think that's very interesting what you're saying because you know sometimes yousee some musicians and it just goes straight to their head or athletes or rock stars or whatever it goes straight to the headand you can just see how their ego just blows up but what i hear is someone who's quite humble you go back to theroutine you go back to the process the success yes it was a highlight that day highlight that year, month, what have you.
But that's something you celebrated then and there, but what's important for you is that, okay, that's a feather in my cap,but I go back to the process and there's always the next step. Is that what I hear?
Yeah, you go back to the heart of everything.

[54:01] I think that's also a very important thing of self-worth is to stay humble because through staying humble that meansyou understand that you'll make mistakes but you also understand that you can learn adapt and evolve to differentsituation then that in itself gives you the mental fortitude or resilience next challenge is that what I understand your kindof your mindset is about yeah I feel very humble um and I'm not trying to prove anything I'm just trying to put somethinginto the world and and to try to connect in some way to people and um of course to be humble is important and we have tobe open and also when i work with musicians and stuff we are all very open to each other and and i also get a lot ofenergy from other musicians and their input put into my music so I've always respected other people's ideas and I alwaysreached you know I always had great musicians because I knew they would contribute something that would.

[55:12] Hire my music or lift it up to another level so I'm very humble about what I can how other artists or musicians cancolor what I've created yeah I guess that is the creative process right you know you you put out something like that andsomeone can bend the idea break the idea blend the idea and create something and they spit it back to you and you do thesame thing and what you have is a permutation of minds playing with whatever it is a song piece or uh I find that veryinteresting if I could just go back to your inner creativity this has nothing to do with resilience or anything I'm just curiousI've read you know different poets and and and authors and musicians where they say sometimes that you know what Iwas just the conduit of this piece something else created this it was a product that Celia or John or Jack or whoever madebut they sometimes have described that yeah it just came to me it just some some have you felt that yourself i'm alwayscurious about that that aspect yeah well i don't want it to sound too like i don't know the word in english out there yeahbut i think there is uh There is, I am, there's something I am connected to a higher consciousness or.

Creativity as a Conduit for Higher Consciousness


[56:40] And I am able to express it through my art and my music.
But there is something higher, something, you know, that comes from, I do actually feel connected to that.
I was given this channel or this voice to express what I do.
But I feel myself, I'm connected to something above me or something like that wants to go through me without making itsound too you know.

[57:13] You know out there yeah yeah yeah yeah no but i i find that fascinating because you know the you know the thescientists watson and crick who discovered dna you know they thought of the double helix in a dream that they thoughtyou know this is something that's come to me yes it's probably with the process of all their work and put things togetherbut in a dream the double helix this dna this complex it's just amazing or and that time and time again it doesn't matter ifit's a scientist an artist uh what have you if it's a creative or if it's scientific i've read time and time again they sometimesinspired by sort of almost a collective consciousness a higher consciousness and they become the conduit they become thethe the path in which what they produce is something for the world but it's it's obviously it's part of them but i i just find ijust wanted to ask you that because i i read it time and time and time again and i just find that kind of fascinating i don'tthink neuroscience has kind of like tapped into that depth of creativity that's interesting but i think maybe we feel we havea kind of a mission to express what we feel was there and it comes from you know it's i think that's that's very cool to bein touch with uh something higher.

[58:39] Uh above or and then when we do music together on stage uh we are connected in that um the heart of this.

[58:52] We, we communicate there, but we are not sure really what it is, but we know we are connected to something that'smore than we are.

[59:03] I find that fascinating. Just a couple of last questions. I'm very respectful of your time, Celia.
Like when you're on stage and you're, you're, you're in a flow with the other band members or the other musicians, areyou like almost in a bubble?
Like you guys, like the external world kind of melts away in your own your own internal world i'm i'm talking i'mcompletely i'm not a musician by any things and i'm completely ignorant so that's where my question is coming from alevel of ignorance what what does it feel like when you're on stage and you're just you're just in the flow with the othermusicians yeah that's um.

[59:41] It depends. Sometimes it can be more like I feel I'm on stage and I know what's going on here and I can see thisguy's looking at his watch and this guy's like oh he's going to you know I can sometimes just be you know doing it andnot feeling so.
But then there are other parts of the concert where we go to you know higher space and we forget about the surroundings.
We can't expect to be there all the time, but then that is the intense experience of doing something that makes it all worthit.
And then we also feel that the audience is there with us.
And I think that to be alive with the audience, then we are also colored by the audience.
So what we do at that moment, it also reflects back through the audience.
So we're all together in some moment of something higher and something bigger.
And I think we all need those beautiful moments in life where we forget just that we are a person, but we're lifted a littlebit higher into a little touch of magic.

[1:01:09] That's that's that's so well said. It's such an astute point.
I think that's a brilliant place to end this conversation. It's it's on a high.

[1:01:20] I feel there is a sort of flow in our conversation. So I really appreciate your time, Celia. It's been an awesomeconversation.

[1:01:26] And to, you know, to explore someone of.

[1:01:30] You know, the pinnacle of what she does in a career year and to understand the mindset and understand how webuild that mindset and how it it adds resilience and allows you to buffer success and adversity and challenges anduncertainty i think there's a lot there that our listeners can adopt you know even if their parents teaching their kids or atwhatever age i guess i hope so um but i i have been thinking a lot about this um the social media and the input that is sointense and that is not human because it's too much information for us and we're not supposed to deal with all thisinformation so i think our minds get very stressed and easily also get bored because we're used to very short like fun pusha button and you don't have to deal with your own whatever it is yeah um so i mean to be a creative person you need to bein touch with your a calm place in you where you know what is it that you want to express and if i'm not in touch with ithow can i express it so i think i really think that we need to just.

[1:02:59] Turn off the phone, to be able to do it because even me and you are used to now being interrupted although weknow what it's like not to be even you and me i have to do that you know very true i see myself going automatically to myphone sometimes it's like and then i catch myself it's like and i'm just like scrolling mindlessly and i think what am i doingand what's the joy you get from it really.

Cultivating Inner Creativity and Self-Worth


[1:03:30] That i think is well said but i think you also said a very salient point is that you and i we have the context of whatlife was like without that so we always have we can reflect back of okay and we can go back to those earlier times whenthere wasn't the social media where as you said you've you've developed this sort of inner shell this inner self where yourinner creativity comes and that's your self-worth it's the place you find refuge when everything else is crazy it's that quietplace that tranquil place where you can find uh respite and such and i think that's so important and you know i encourageparents out there to help their kids you know to try to find that to cultivate that i think it's it's such a it will serve them sowell into the future when life gets crazy and we're not around as parents anymore and they are you know obviouslyindependent dependent and they have to figure out life themselves but it's difficult because it's difficult i think i also havea young uh 14 year old and it's very difficult to.

[1:04:40] Well they're into another world well they have the phone everywhere and i keep saying it but um that's uh that'sanother subject it's a challenge for us and for them.

[1:04:55] Well, Celia, thank you very much for your time today, sharing your mindset, the DNA of your mindset.
Thank you. I hope I was able to express it in English.
But you always sum it up in a very beautiful way. Oh, I wish I said that. Oh, that was great.
Vibrance. I like the word vibrance. That's a cool word.
Well that's definitely what you are you're very vibrant i appreciate it but thank you celia very much for your time todayjason it was really nice conversation and you made me you know sometimes we don't know uh when people ask aquestion about what do you do when because it's been into the intuitive thing in life it's not that we know that oh no i dothis and that it's just an intuitive intuitive flow going and we know when the flow is low and it's not like but it's alwayslike a flow inside now my flow is very like i'd like to go to my piano now that was so nice you made me inspired actuallywell if zanette hits something you can you can hint towards uh the podcast there right yeah well thank you very muchcelia i appreciate your time today thank you jason Bye for now, Celia. Bye. Bye.

[1:06:10] Music. 

The Essence of Creativity and Resilience


[1:06:19] As we wrap up today's brilliant discussion with Celia, our journey through the landscape of creativity andresilience finds us reflecting on the essence of artistic exploration and personal growth.
Celia's insights in the second part of our conversation deeper our understanding of creativity, not just as an act, but as alifestyle, style, emphasizing the importance of feeding the mind with diverse inputs and allowing the subconscious thefreedom to innovate.
She advocates for embracing moments of stillness and boredom as integral parts of the creative process, highlighting howthese periods can serve as fertile ground for growth and inspiration.

[1:06:59] You know, Celia's approach to navigating pressure and stress, focused on incremental progress, thenoverwhelming goals, underscores the value of trusting the journey.
Her perspective on success is both refreshing and grounding.
She celebrates achievements while remaining committed to the creative process, reminding us that the true joy of artistrylies in creation itself, rather than its accolades.
Perhaps most profoundly, Celia touches on the mystical aspects of creativity, suggesting that at times, artists merely arethe conduits for something greater, channeling creativity from a source beyond themselves.
This notion, coupled with her experience of flow and the transcendent connection between artist, audience, and themoment, invites us to consider the deeper, almost sacred dimension of the creative work.
You know, as we wrap up this episode, Celia's narrative serves as a powerful reminder of the beauty and the complexity ofthe creative path, whether through the discipline of daily practice, the courage to face the ebb and flow of success andsetback, or the openness to being a vessel for creativity.

[1:08:07] Celia exemplifies the spirit of resilience and the boundless potential of the human mind.
And to you dear listener I hope this episode inspires you to raise your creative instincts trust the process and find yourown rhythm in the vast symphony of life remember the magic of creativity is not just in the outcome but in the courage topursue it every step of the way and a personal thank you to you Celia for your soft-spoken reflective humble and vibrantnature I truly do appreciate the time you've given to us sharing your vulnerabilities possibilities and your mindset.
So thank you, Celia. I very much appreciate it. It was a brilliant conversation.
You know, folks, it's conversations like this that I continue to do this podcast.
I'm humbled by listening to others, to sharing their experiences, by hearing their stories, hearing their narratives, because Idon't know everything.
I'm far from the word thing.
I learned so, so much. And I hope these episodes do the same for you.
Well, folks, if you were were inspired today, please share this with your network on LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, X,whatever it may be, because it truly helps me spread the word.
So thank you for showing up for another week. And until next time, we continue this conversation. Keep well.

[1:09:25] Music. 


Introduction to It's an Inside Job podcast
Introducing Celia Nedgaard, Norway's Top Jazz Singer
Introducing Celia Niergaard: Singer and Composer
Approaching Heroes for Collaboration
Shielding Self-Worth from Rejection and Criticism
Finding solace in your own world of creativity
Overcoming the fear of running out of creativity
Struggling with Pressure to Create Another Hit
Navigating the Creative Journey: Inner Creativity and Resilience
Finding Inspiration Outside of Songwriting
Navigating Social Media and Self-Worth
Effort and Consistency in Pursuit of Excellence
Trusting the Process: Focusing on the Present
Managing Success and Staying Grounded
Creativity as a Conduit for Higher Consciousness
Cultivating Inner Creativity and Self-Worth
The Essence of Creativity and Resilience