Sunday, November 29, 2009

INSIGHTS FROM MILES DAVIS


A few months ago I wrote that I was getting into jazz. I was spending time listening to it, and going to jazz clubs with "smart" jazz friends who would graciously answer my naive questions. Then over the Thanksgiving weekend I took a deep diveon the topic and read the book, MILES, The Autobiography, written by Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe in 1989.

To put it mildly, Miles Davis lived a fast life. He had to overcome many demons and he holds nothing back in this book. I guess that is why I was so entranced by it. But I will admit that his language is extrememely colorful, so if you read it don't say that I didn't warn you!

The book cover states that "for more than 40 years Miles Davis was in the forefront of American music." I know that people have a wide range of reactions to Miles Davis, both the man and the musician but as I read the book what struck me was that Miles Davis was constantly rewiring himself when it came to his music.

I began to see a correlation with some of the people I had met this past year who have asked me...how do I stay in the game? How do I compete? It is highly competitive today regardless of one's field or one's age. Miles Davis made me realize each of us HAS to be our own critic. At age 49 when Miles Davis saw younger musicians coming on the scene he made the statement," I'm not prepared to be a memory yet," and he went out there and learned what it takes to stay in the game!

He hired younger band members. He dressed differently. He added percussion instruments to the mix and he gained an understanding of why Jimi Hendrix, SLY, James Brown and PRINCE were having success. He could have hung it up and complained, but he didn't.

Yes, I know that I'm overlaying my interpretation on what Miles Davis did, on what each of us can do, but it works. If we're still playing the same old song, with the same old beat, with the same old band then we need to change.

Tony Bennett was an original inspiration for us when we wrote DON'T RETIRE, REWIRE! When he did the MTV show Tony Bennett UNPLUGGED, and then went on to make duets with KD Lang we caught the fever and thought of him as a role model for rewiring!

Maybe neither Tony nor Miles works for you, but find someone who does and go make some changes in your life that keep you in the game!

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Discover Why Traditional Retirement Is Obsolete

Long before the economic chaos of this past year, Americans were already beginning to redefine what retirement meant to them. In fact it was as early as the year 2000, that AARP discovered that 80% of their members said they wanted to "work in retirement," but with flexible hours and with less stress and responsibility. But there is more to the story....


I had the chance to explore the concept with my friend, Andres Tapia, of HEWITT ASSOCIATES in an article entitled: Take Five - Retirement Is So Yesterday- Think Rewirement! It was an opportunity to propose a few ideas that all of us can start to do regardless of age or stage of life.


Andres is the author of the new book "The Inclusion Paradox: The Obama Era and the Transformation of Global Diversity," and is putting forward new ideas to consider that will impact all of our futures. It's a great read and very thought-provoking!

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