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"Imposter Syndrome" and "What is it all for?"

  • Thread starter Vapyd
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Jul 14, 2019
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Hi! Some of you might know me from Bandcamp, SoundCloud or Twitter. Something has been weighing on my mind lately and I keep going in circles about it. So I thought I just ask a bunch of strangers on a forum, I don't frequent that often... so here it goes.

I have been at this Vaporwave thing for about 3 years now. I have 15 releases under my belt, I have been on multiple comps and have released on some reputable labels. I am active in the community and I know that I have people who look up to me and that think a comment or RT from me is a serious bump. And yet I can't shake this feeling that I am just a mediocre aging EDM producer, faking it. How stupid is that? Who would fake being into Vaporwave? And how sad would that be? A wannabe-vaporwave artist... The more you can maybe understand how much it bugs me that I feel like one. And I think people feel that I feel like that.

What doesn't help is that my tapes don't sell well and that my shit-posts on Twitter consistently get more likes and retweets than my music-related posts. Damn near every remix, collab and compilation appearance I did so far, I had to initiate. I am not asking to be Porter Vong or George Clanton, I just wanna feel like part of the community and not like an interloper.

And then there is the thing that I have no idea where this whole project is supposed to go. Do I want to get famous? Sorta, but more in a "respected among my fellow artists" kind of way. Do I want to crossover eventually to more mainstream styles? Not really. Do I want to keep making the same, formulaic, sounds-like-done-in-a-day sound that Vapyd has become known for? Do I want to experiment and be more avant garde, like I know that I could? Or do I just wanna keep making vapid little vapor-diddies that are just fun to listen to? The problem is: I have no idea! What's the endgame here? I know I can't quit...

The last time I "stopped making music", my life was miserable. Empty. Without my "music" and my fake-ish persona hyping it online, I don't have much. And the mundane existence of a non-creative person, with friends and bars and movies and hobbies and work... I would honestly kill myself sooner or later.

So here we are... 3 years of tunes, 1.4k followers across various platforms (mainly Twitter tho) and I get nearly no satisfaction out of it. It's more like a compulsion. I have to do it, whether I feel shit about it or not, because if I don't, I will feel even shittier.

I don't know if any of you have any advice on how to combat this impostor syndrome and if there are ways for me to feel more a part of the community, but I just had to get this off my chest and even just writing this down has helped me a little. Any responses will be read and greatly appreciated.

Thanks for reading.

Oh, and I made new song and put it as single on my Bandcamp



Staff Member
Mar 22, 2019
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To put it shortly, I know that feel. I believe that every artist has felt like you, regardless of medium, I know I have. My friend Adam is a wood worker, specifically wood turning, he has shelves of some of the finest quality products of his craft, yet he has sold nothing. As he puts it he just makes em and is on to the next project, he hit a slump and bought a bigger lathe. Now what am I trying to say is you are not alone in this feeling. I feel like this is a subject that is never discussed and I appreciate that you have the balls to address this conundrum of artists.
Here's my solutions as I have tried specific to vaporwave:
1. Stop listening to vaporwave
2.listen to something completely different for me its death or black metal
3. Or listen to the vaporwave that got you in to vaporwave on repeat until you forget what you are listening to
4. Listen to all of your own music solely
5. Finish any songs you've shelved
6.remix or vaporwave your own stuff
7. Remix other peoples stuff
8. Keep making music because somebody has too
9. Try using just your cellphone to make music :p
That's all I got I hope this helped.
Love always,
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Active Traveler
Apr 23, 2019
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We do Classical Vapor aka Eccojams and imo, that's something inbetween being a DJ making mixtapes and being "real" producers. Also I think with the constant push from bigger artists for Future Funk and non-sampled VW in the last years, I do think the apprechiation from new listeners is pretty low, but there are always these connaisseurs like us, who still love the muzak.
Also, be real to yourself!:
-You've produced all these great albums, which certainly have at least 10 downloads each.
-You've made good impact and interviewed many awesome artists with your podcast.
-You are deep in the networks, covering all important grounds.
I do believe you can be very proud of yourself, with what you already accomplished!
Then again, don't forget, we're talking about Vaporwave, a friggin niche underground genre, so I do count 10 downloads on Bandcamp as a good hit. =D
Besides, yeah I also know that feeling of burning out, just don't destroy what you already created, maybe take some time off and come back with fresh energy.

BTW please release your City Scape Series as a collectors edition, like haircuts for men recently did. Whould love to have finally them all in one big album and I hope the Assorted Vaporwave Podcast continues, maybe on a bi-monthly scedule, to reduce the stress.
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Andy Peterson

Home&Office to achieve maximum success
Jul 29, 2019
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I totally understand that feeling and my advice to you would be to take a break from the persona you've built, take a break from vaporwave if you need to, and try writing some music simply for the joy of doing it. Write something with the sole intention of pleasing yourself and just see what comes out of it. Once I started writing purely from the heart, I feel like I underwent a sort of awakening and a flood of fresh ideas followed.
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