The approach to practice real simple. If your main motivation is to indulge your ego, to become the famous one that everyone else envies, and to grace the “common man” with the privilege of allowing them to come to your show, you will fail.
I don’t care if you have a record deal with a major label, representation by a famous artist manager, or a booking deal with the top agent at the biggest agency. You will fail.
On the other hand, if you understand the new economy, you understand the value of trading information for content, and you’re willing and capable of creating meaning with people, then you will succeed.
You want to be a hit act? You need to understand what type of life that really is. You need to understand that by choosing this lifestyle, you’re joining the ranks of the working class. And you’re going to have to work hard for your success. Once you reach your goal, you’re going to have to work for a long time to maintain it.
You have to understand The Power Of Free Music
You have to understand that it is you who is privileged to have the honor to have the attention of a few people for the nite, that they have chosen to let you entertain them. You’re working for the common man, and you are the common man.
At this point, I’ve been working for a long time in this space – the place where the money comes only after you create meaning with people. It’s been a very rough road to say the least, and there’s still a long way to go. So far, it’s looked nothing like I expected it to, and directions have changed more times than I can count. But I’m still plowing away, and while not every idea comes to fruition, a few do.
One of these ideas is the Three Side Single, which I launched a few weeks ago. The idea of the Three Side Single is a simple three song release that is download only, and available for $0. All you do is trade your email address for a download.
The inaugural release of this series I did in partnership with the Nashville indie rock band, Kink Ador.
Kink Ador understands the power of free music. Both Kink Ador, and myself, invite you to join the tribe.
Are you struggling a little bit to get your recording career off the ground? Perhaps you’re stuck having to work that low-level day job a little bit longer than you hoped. Or you completed an internship at a studio, but the big gig never came. Or maybe you are going through a transitional time right now, booking projects at a little bit more of an inconsistent basis than what’s ideal…
…And you’re thinking about jumping ship-getting involved in another line of work altogether.
But does that make sense? Does it make sense to invest time and money into something that you have no (or less) experience, not much expertise, passion, or drive, and no work history?
Or does it make more sense to keep going-to invest more time and money into something that you’ve already got a good start in? Why change careers when you’ve already invested so much time, money, and passion into producing and engineering, and right when you’re on the verge of a big breakthrough?
Sure, you’ve got to know when to quit, but you’ve also got to be certain you’re quitting for the right reasons (and understanding when you should stick). Are you truly ready to get out of the game? Did your passion for record making really extinguish? Or are you just frustrated with the way things are going right now?
Sometimes quitting doesn’t mean changing vocations entirely. Most the time, in fact, the best option is to stick with what you’re passionate about. Rather than investing time and money into a career change that would require a complete restart, I would argue that it’s actually better to invest more time and money into record production and/or audio engineering. Because you have already put this much time and money in, and making records is what you’re passionate about.
So before you run off to do something that is going to require you to start completely over, evaluate your current situation, and what you can do to improve it.
What is your single biggest deficiency? What is your single biggest challenge? What one thing can you do differently that will improve your situation? Where can you innovate?
Quitting is an absolute last resort. It’s very expensive and very risky. I would argue that what you should be focusing on is tweaking and persisting. That’s a much less expensive, substantially quicker, and more fun path to success.
Fire your worst client.
They ask too much of you.
They don’t pay you near enough.
Anything you do is never good enough.
They only complain about the work you do.
They make you feel like your skills are lacking.
I’ve been writing a lot about the benefits of working for $0 lately. Yesterday I spent some time talking about how you can make money (But What About The Money?). And today I offer this bonus point:
Getting rid of your worst client will improve the efficiency of your business significantly. You can focus on the core operations of your work, no one will be breathing down your neck making you feel like you’re no good, and you will maximize your income by taking on more appreciative clients who are easy to please.
No one will ask too much of you.
Everyone will pay you what you’re worth.
Everything you do will astonish your clients.
Your clients will publicly praise your amazing work.
Your clients will make you feel like your skills are infinite.
Don’t have enough clients to warrant firing your worst one? Set a goal to replace them, and make that goal happen within the next 30 days. When you achieve your goal, kindly send a note to your worst client informing them that you’re no longer available.