Today we’re joined by Baylee Morris. Baylee is a phenomenal musician who has been playing the clarinet for almost ten years. When she’s not playing, Baylee teaches younger musicians. It’s very obvious that she’s an incredibly talented and dedicated musician, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I’ve been playing the clarinet for about 10 years now and I still love it. I mostly played in school, but after I graduated high school, I still continue to play at church and teach up comers at my alma maters. I also teach children at my church how to read sheet music and piano basics. After I graduated, I didn’t think I would be able to continue music, but luckily, I found small, but meaningful ways to keep going.
What inspires you?
Mostly music. I can’t handle silence, and music feels empty space like no other substance. I’ve always felt this way. Plus, as a sufferer from ADHD, fidgeting was a problem I had in my younger days in school, so being able to use my own body to make music… it’s just fantastic.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
My older brother was in band two years before I was and all his stories from marching band and the concerts that I witnessed myself pretty much made up my mind. I got my clarinet two years before I joined in 6th grade, and love every bit of it.
Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?
I was the youngest person in my band’s history to be section leader in marching band and also the first person in years to take on the section leader role, as well as another head role in the band- mine being Uniform Chief. I’m really proud of this and was incredibly happy to help younger students reach their own potentials.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Stick with what you love, and things will fall into place. In a group of 70+ people, you are going to encounter people that don’t appreciate it as much as you, or the work that you put into it. Keep going though. Keep doing what you love.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Since band kids are sometimes labeled as “sexually active” (LOL mean girls), being not sexually active surprises some people. I’ve heard it all; “Why are you sooooo prude?”, “You just haven’t found the right guy!”, and “Maybe you could find someone if you’d just lighten up.” These were from people in band and out of band.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
The most common (and most hurtful) thing that I’ve encountered were from past significant others is “You just don’t love me enough.” or “What’s wrong with me?” This can hurt your feels, but remember, you are not obligated to do anything, no matter how much you love the person or how guilty the try to make you feel.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Accept yourself the way you are! There are so many people out there that share your same views. Why focus on the negative people when you can befriend the amazing people who are willing to talk to you like an actual human being?
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
If you want to see my specific band, you can YouTube search Jackson County Bands NC. But if you want to see some wicked cool stuff, try look for BOA (Bands of America) bands, Drum Corps (Cadets are a personal favorite of mine), or head to your own school’s concert. Those band kids will appreciate it. Believe me, they will.
Thank you, Baylee, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.