There Is Try: Why Yoda Was Wrong

Yoda famously said to Luke Skywalker, “Do or do not, there is no try.”  And even though I understand what the great Jedi master is talking about, I’m going to risk the wrath of the force by disagreeing with him.  After all he’s, not even real.

There is “try”. Or at least there should be.

And when it comes to new things, there should definitely be “try”.

Try is how we grow and learn.  Try is exciting, stimulating, curious and adventurous. Try can also be uncomfortable, awkward, disheartening and full of failure.

It doesn’t matter- do it anyway.

As a musician during the Covid shutdown in 2020, I was out of work.  There were no gigs or performances to be done anywhere, and the “fun” of just practicing wore away pretty quickly as well.

The sudden abundance of free time gave me a chance to try a few new things- as long as though things involved being alone, or being with a very few masked colleagues at a distance of at least 6 feet.

I decided to try my hand at songwriting.  I had done other types of music writing before but was never really comfortable with the idea of writing songs, mostly because I’m not very good with lyrics.  There was a lot to write about though at that time; Covid, racial issues (George Floyd) and environmental problems.  So I took a stab at it.

The experience of writing and recording the song was everything mentioned above- the good and the bad.  It was all a big experiment, from the singing (I’m a trumpet player) to the playing of many of the parts myself. I have mixed feelings about the musical result, but am very glad I made the effort to try.  Through the process I learned a lot about how to do better next time.  

Since that first trial I’ve expanded into writing more and better songs both for myself and for others (more on that another time), but it all started with a half-baked idea and me stumbling through an uncertain process.

A few weeks after the recording, Covid died down a bit, enough that I could get out and shoot some footage for a video to accompany the song. It was released about 2 years ago today.

Here is the result of the whole 2020 songwriting experiment, warts and all.  I’m showing it not because it’s particularly good (it isn’t) but because I hope to inspire you to try whatever it is you’re thinking about doing, without worrying whether or not it will “come out right”.

Just do it.  Try.  Start. It’s not the results that matter, it’s the growth.

Earlier this year I wrote a poem about trying, inspired by one of my favorite writers, Dr. Suess. Read it here if you like.

“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?” –Vincent van Gogh

What new things are you thinking about trying?  What are you waiting for to begin?

Follow me at Wise & Shine Magazine and my personal Five O’Clock Shadow blog for more stories. Rise Up, Awaken and other music is available at Todd Fulginiti Music.

26 thoughts on “There Is Try: Why Yoda Was Wrong

  1. Wow. Just wow. Impressed, amazed and grateful that you shared. I love the message of your post but your first-hand example? Beautiful, Todd! I don’t think you give yourself enough credit in any of the categories where you profess to be a ‘novice’. Songwriter AND musician and lovely singer? All of that, plus terrific videographer skills. And am I wrong? Does the whole of the piece have a subtle Reggae, island vibe? I love that, too. Mellow with a message. 😊😊😊

    1. Thanks very much Victoria! 🙂 I’m a big fan of Bob Marley and that reggae sound. I feel comfortable playing instruments and writing instrumental music, but the singing is a work in progress and writing lyrics is still a big, awkward struggle. I got lucky hiking past that deer and crab in the video! 🙂😎 Thanks for listening!

      1. Yes! That footage was amazing. Really great ‘action’ and nature shots. Congrats to you for all of it – beautiful! 😉

  2. I love your vulnerability in this post, Todd. Thank you for leading in the inspiration to try. I agree, Yoda was wrong because there is so much power in the courage to try.

    You’ve done a beautiful job trying — and delivering!!

    1. Thanks Wynne! I used to think that Yoda’s quote was true, and in many situations I think it is/ can be true- but over the years I’ve come to generally disagree with it.

  3. Hi Todd,

    Thank you for sharing another great post! I agree with you fully, about life being about the growth! 🙏

  4. Okay, let me start with the post. I loved the message and wise words of wisdom, Todd. Next, the video. It’s really, really good!! And I know just enough about recording to have a smidgen of an idea how much work – and how many hours- went into that. Especially if you were laying multiple tracks yourself! Not to mention the videography. Amazing! Lastly, the Dr. Seuss poem, which was delightful. Pus in a pimple made me laugh, but it got your point across very well. 😆 Really enjoyed all of this!

    1. Thanks very much!! I really appreciate that you read both the post and the link, and watched the video too 😎 I’m glad you share my sense of humor -that pimple image makes me smile 😁

  5. I agree with you Todd, you always have to try, and if it’s not as good as you wanted, next time you’ll do it better. Like us with our first podcast! And the video is very nice. Lyrics and music are yours, also the photos? Congratulations well done!

    1. Thanks Cristiana! That first podcast with you and Troy came out very well! 😎 is Yep- music, lyrics, video footage and all performances are me except I had others play the guitar, bass and flute parts.

  6. Pretty darned impressive for first ‘try’ I’d say! Congratulations on following your heart and seeing it through. I hope it’s not your last ‘try’! Great job!!

  7. I love your analysis of try: ‘exciting, stimulating, curious and adventurous. Try can also be uncomfortable, awkward, disheartening and full of failure.’ Yoda wasn’t as wise as we thought 😆 Great personal anecdote and I love the song – musically and the message 💚

  8. I get where you were going with challenging to “master Yoda” but with all due respect, he was still right.

    You didn’t just “try”. You DID.

    You DID step out of your comfort zone. You DID begin songwriting. You didn’t half-ass the accomplishments: you saw them to fruition.

    Yoda is still right.

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