A music career is about more than your songs
Every musician’s dream of doing what they love for a living starts differently, yet the same. It’s all a variation of a similar story. They saw someone inspiring perform live, and then by and by started playing their instrument and then eventually created something themselves. From then on, they’re hooked – music is their life. But that simple song, the first one plucked and played in their bedroom, is just the beginning. All the songs are just the beginning to what a music career is really about, which is everything.
Working with others
Would you still be creating music if, for reasons that we can’t go into, you were the only person left on earth? Of course you would. But everyone knows that music is about bringing people together as much as it is an individual experience. Your songs begin with you doing your thing, but if it’s a good one then it’ll travel far and wide and take on a whole life of its own. It’s about feeling, essentially. Your music career will also be about working with others to create something new. Even the very best artists can find working with others invigorating, so don’t make yourself closed if you’re a solo artist.
Doing business your way
With a lot of hard work and a pinch of luck (ok, a lot of luck), you could find yourself in a position where you’re actually considered a legitimate music artist. How you conduct yourself on your way to this legitimacy can determine your legacy. If you sacrifice who you are just to make it, what will be left once the ink on the contact has dried? There are many ways to do things. Brian Epstein took the Beatles to the top through sheer will. Coran Capshaw ignored the conventional route yet was still able to take Dave Matthews Band to the very top. Vulfpeck used a Spotify trick (releasing an album of silence and asking fans to play it on repeat overnight) to get widespread attention. Think outside the box, and never compromise your ideals.
Your creative path
If you’re an artist who isn’t looking to grow creatively, then you’re no longer an artist. We can all learn from Jimi Hendrix, who saw real value in his craft and was constantly looking to reinvent his sound to mirror his experience. Your music career will be a journey of discovery, one that will hopefully never come to an end. Always be willing to take chances musically and you don’t know where you could end up.
Saying goodbye to money
Only a fool would try to get into the music industry because they want to make money, but it goes without saying that there is a lot of money connected with music and some of it might come your way. But you should never chase, never add another hook just because it might make you a few extra cents. If you’re passionate about your songs and have talent, then people – and eventually money – will follow.
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