Derek Sivers wasn’t a born singer. His pitch was bad, his tone was bad, and everybody told him so.
Despite thousands of hours of solo practice and touring as the lead singer of a band for years, Sivers still wasn’t there. At the age of 25, his mentor told him, ‘Derek, you’re just not a singer. You really need to stop trying. Admit you’re a songwriter, and find a real singer.’
Unfazed, he continued to practice and persevere. At the age of 29, after fifteen years of practice and a thousand live shows, somebody who heard him for the first time told him, ‘Singing is a gift that either you’re born with or you’re not. You’re lucky. You were born with it!’.
Talent and skill are the same thing. If you don’t have the talent, you can practice to acquire the skill, for practice eventually transmutes skill into talent.
Inspiration: After 15 years of practice