Invest in your musical craft
I see artists and producers having a hard time betting on themselves. I get asked (almost daily) to invest either time or resources into an artist or a producer. I’m met with promises of money and exposure for my brand, but on close examination I struggle to find where they have bet on themselves previously. I’ll ask them what work they’ve put into their craft and they’ll tell me they’ve been writing songs for a few years. When I ask them what investments they’ve made then I get all sorts of stories about why they can’t put up money for themselves and yet they are the next big thing.
My issue with this situation is that I’ll be asked to invest my time and my resources into someone that hasn’t done anything substantial for themselves.
Why would anyone take the risk and put money or resources into an artist/producer who hasn’t tried paid advertising, getting themselves at least 1 gig every other month, understanding the difference between SAMRO and RiSA, understanding the difference between mixing and mastering, using grainy cellphone pictures in their profile, zero radio play? You won’t be an asset to the business. One would spend the first year teaching said artist/producer the fundamentals and they still might fail purely because there’s a lack of motivation and initiative. These qualities require self-awareness which can’t be taught and the situation is almost certain to fail. Invest all you can before you expect help from someone else.
Rant aside, I really do like seeing new people make it onto the music scene. Change is great, but I believe the greatest change should be experienced by those that put in the most work. I also believe in risking it. If you have an extra R500 why not risk buying new equipment? I promise you you will end up using it because YOU USED YOUR RESOURCES TO ACQUIRE IT. Use that R500 for online marketing. Use it to start you off with piano lessons. I promise you that you will take it extra seriously because you’ve put up that money. This is one of the reasons investment is so important. It shows that you’ve taken full responsibility for what you want and you’re willing to stop at nothing to get it. External people see this drive and this pushes them to invest in you. It’s very simple. No one bets on the person that doesn’t seem to put in the hours.
What happens if you don’t have extra money or resources? That’s garbage! One thing we should all have is time. If you have zero time then you aren’t prioritizing your music. Time is THE most valuable resource. I’ve learnt that in most instances it’s more valuable than money. Once you realise this then you will grind til the sun comes up. If all else fails and you have nothing more to give, give your time. Give time to write songs each day. Give time to make 1 industry phone call a week to inquire about something. Give time to make beats on a daily basis. Give time to read up new song writing techniques. Give time to learning what the hell compression is. You’ll thank me for it.
Risk also requires sacrifice. You won’t have money to play with online advertising if you’re spending all your extra cash on other things. You won’t have time to search the net for blogs you can submit music to if you spend all evening watching TV. Set goals for yourself and make those changes in your life that will allow you to reach those goals.
If any of this resonates with you then I encourage you to read more of my posts. There’s always something new to learn and there’s always new motivation out there to acquire. Keep inspired