“Lets just keep playing” 🎸

In Blog, Hustle Podcast by Eric ByrnesLeave a Comment

Yesterday we talked about the private speech that Garth Brooks gave after winning his 7th CMA Entertainer Of The Year award… 

We analyzed the talk as a whole, but today we are going to analyze each part of it and break down what I believe he was intending to say and how and why it had such an enormous impact on me, and why it should you as well.

Here are the 6 lessons learned from quite possibly the most iconic 56 second speech of all time: 

  1. Care – “Number 7!!!!” Garth shows an enthusiasm and joy as if it was the first award he has ever won. It obviously matters to him, so it is going to matter to those on his team that make it all possible. People feel, follow and feed off the energy of leaders who are constantly setting the tone of the group or organization.
  2. Authentic Actions speak – The recognition of the fact that they played both dive bars and stadiums indicates Garth’s commitment to the roots of the music while also embracing what it takes to maintain a global reach. When we show authenticity with our actions, words need not be spoken.
  3. Check the Ego – By saying that if it stops today he is fine, Garth is basically letting everyone know that it is not more that he seeks… He is content with his accomplishments and this is not a continuous quest to feed the ego. The ultimate form of gratitude is not seeking more but rather being happy with what you have and who you are in the present moment.
  4. Bigger than You – Indicating he will NOT be ok if it means “stop playing with you guys” shows that Garth realizes the entire thing is much bigger than himself and involves so many people that he loves and is willing to continue to work and fight for… Ironically, having a vision much larger than ourselves is what will eventually allow us to truly fulfill our maximum potential.
  5. Understand the Real Award – “So let’s just keep playing whether these awards come or not” is the beautiful recognition of what really matters, making music… Garth knows that awards are fleeting and largely outside of his control, so there is no need to let outsiders dictate their success. The process is the ultimate award, always has been, always will be.
  6. Pass the Credit –You guys are the fucking entertainers of the year.” Most people will mention the team of people that helped contribute to the success, but oftentimes, it’s bullshit and rings hollow… There was nothing hollow about this. As a matter of fact, there was a roar of emotion that felt so real it literally brought a tear to my eye.

Sustained success is not a constant upward curve with zero descents… There undoubtedly is going to be ups and downs, yet when we are able to embrace the ever changing world while maintaining the core values of who we are and what we represent, we will continue to learn and grow.

Garth has been in the game for over 30 years and even though he has now won 7 CMA Entertainer Of The Year awards, there are still 23 plus years he was eligible and didn’t bring home the grand prize… 

Instead of bitching about it and taking his trophies and going home, this dude has continued to charge forward regardless if he was recognized for his success or not. As a matter of fact, I am sure Garth and his team would tell us that there were years they felt they deserved the award and didn’t get it and there were other years they took home the big enchilada and felt they didn’t deserve it… 

Ultimately, like Garth said, “Lets just keep playing.” 



P.S. The Let Them Play: A Triathlon Across America documentary is finally here, and it’s the perfect film for a family movie night! Proceeds will not only benefit the Let Them Play foundation, but $1 from each sale goes directly to the COVID-19 Response Fund.

Visit LetThemPlayFilm.com or click the button below to watch now! 📽🍿