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Thank You, This is the End. Condenser Microphones
Old 19th March 2017
  #31
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bgood's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Synth Guru View Post
During my years of buying an album based on a song I heard on the radio and realizing that the rest of the tracks were crap. I realized just how many musicians are out there that become a "One hit Wonder" never to be heard again. Not everyone makes it to the top.
Actually it's more like hardly anybody makes it to the top.
Old 20th March 2017
  #32
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GeneHall's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bgood View Post
Actually it's more like hardly anybody makes it to the top.
Exactly.
The top is bought and paid for and served up in dizzying flurry backed up by massive marketing budgets to the collective narcissistic populists far more interested in the branded celebrity profile attached to it, little to no regard whether or not any actual musical substance is obvious and in the mix (so to say). What I see on the charts is not indicative of musical prowess or great songwriting necessarily, in alarming disproportion. And celebrity is bought and paid for , music is just about numbers and without strong numbers, seems only incidental to the celebrity' branding campaign. I don't mean that to come off as cynical, rather it's really all I'm seeing , unless I want to participate in any delusions that would sway that observation. Above all, I believe now more than ever we as creators must be as true to ourselves as possible, come to terms with the hostile volatility of whatever semblance of music business remains in the realm of music, and just do what we do, for ourselves and our own truth.
I do understand the urge to quit and say there can be no possible ascension to a wider audience or capacity to be solely self sustaining with music, but that is a misnomer that is fueled by not having a realistic view of success actually is, and what that top tier is really all about or has become about.

Most of the younger artists coming into my world are from bucked up middle class families who have the money to throw at a childs desire, but sadly I also notice it is also a way in which these enabling parents avoid having a relationship/ or speak using their words with their kids.., and the perception of success that I hear back is similar to some of the core issues in this thread.., "if I can't be famous and rich than I am wasting my time". Very rare if ever do I hear anything like " How can I improve my abilities as an artist?". Pathetic and nauseating to know so many can only define themselves as artists by whether or they have attained celebrity status or seen as temporary greatness via some reality tv show contest ( for example). Maybe it has always been this way, I don't know, but in my years of experience working as everything from a production assistant to an artist manager, amongst the most successful, there has always been years and years of dues, struggles, humility and extraordinary efforts to translate their unique gift to the world. I can relate to and understand the OP to an extent but at some point, ffs, we have to pull it together and get a eyes wide open grip on the bigger picture.
Old 20th March 2017
  #33
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bgood's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeneHall View Post
Exactly.
The top is bought and paid for and served up in dizzying flurry backed up by massive marketing budgets to the collective narcissistic populists far more interested in the branded celebrity profile attached to it, little to no regard whether or not any actual musical substance is obvious and in the mix (so to say). What I see on the charts is not indicative of musical prowess or great songwriting necessarily, in alarming disproportion. And celebrity is bought and paid for , music is just about numbers and without strong numbers, seems only incidental to the celebrity' branding campaign. I don't mean that to come off as cynical, rather it's really all I'm seeing , unless I want to participate in any delusions that would sway that observation. Above all, I believe now more than ever we as creators must be as true to ourselves as possible, come to terms with the hostile volatility of whatever semblance of music business remains in the realm of music, and just do what we do, for ourselves and our own truth.
I do understand the urge to quit and say there can be no possible ascension to a wider audience or capacity to be solely self sustaining with music, but that is a misnomer that is fueled by not having a realistic view of success actually is, and what that top tier is really all about or has become about.

Most of the younger artists coming into my world are from bucked up middle class families who have the money to throw at a childs desire, but sadly I also notice it is also a way in which these enabling parents avoid having a relationship/ or speak using their words with their kids.., and the perception of success that I hear back is similar to some of the core issues in this thread.., "if I can't be famous and rich than I am wasting my time". Very rare if ever do I hear anything like " How can I improve my abilities as an artist?". Pathetic and nauseating to know so many can only define themselves as artists by whether or they have attained celebrity status or seen as temporary greatness via some reality tv show contest ( for example). Maybe it has always been this way, I don't know, but in my years of experience working as everything from a production assistant to an artist manager, amongst the most successful, there has always been years and years of dues, struggles, humility and extraordinary efforts to translate their unique gift to the world. I can relate to and understand the OP to an extent but at some point, ffs, we have to pull it together and get a eyes wide open grip on the bigger picture.
Taylor Swift's folks bought her a label...
Old 20th March 2017
  #34
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgood View Post
Taylor Swift's folks bought her a label...
Well, her father bought a 3% interest in the label. Just as she was signed. That's the equivalent to buying her the deal, sure. Which is what lots of people do. Most of them, to no avail. Imagine how many banks would be happy to loan you $120,000 to make a record, because it's a sure bet that you will get a million-dollar career out of it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
At an industry showcase at Nashville's Bluebird Cafe in 2005, Swift caught the attention of Scott Borchetta, a DreamWorks Records executive who was preparing to form his own independent record label, Big Machine Records. She became one of the first signings, and her father purchased a three percent stake in the fledgling company at an estimated cost of $120,000.[31][32] The singer began working on her eponymous debut album shortly after signing the record deal. She persuaded Big Machine to hire her demo producer Nathan Chapman, with whom she felt she had the right "chemistry".[13] Swift wrote three of the album's songs alone, and co-wrote the remaining eight with writers Rose, Robert Ellis Orrall, Brian Maher, and Angelo Petraglia.[33] Taylor Swift was released on October 24, 2006.[34
$120,000: about the budget for a slick commercial album with the top Nashville people. That's enough $$ to make the record. Stories like this are popular in hindsight about the people for whom it worked. They give the impression that you can buy your way in. But omitted (because its boring) are the large numbers of people who put up similar dough and it did not work.

We all know that for every TS, there are thousands whose parents, husbands, boyfriends, whatever, sank small fortunes into having a record made and yet have nothing to show for it. People who mortgaged their family homes, blew their inheritances, etc. I know some of them personally. If some money was all it took, there would be 100 new "successful" artists every week. We wouldn't have the time to actually listen to their music. Or even learn all their names.

Most will fail to achieve that commercial success. That's just the reality.
Old 20th March 2017
  #35
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JayTee4303's Avatar
For the record, I re-thought my earlier post, and while it has the tone I felt necessary, it overshot and the message was unlikely to make it thru, so I went to delete it, and the delete failed, several times. Onward.
Old 20th March 2017
  #36
Find happiness, Goodbye
Old 20th March 2017
  #37
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donsolo's Avatar
The beauty of music as a career is that in your 20s, everyone wants to get famous. It makes sense since fame = record sales to some extent. It's why acts like Radiohead or NIN can go it alone without a label and still make small fortunes.

The whole crowd sourcing thing works if you're already famous. If you're not, then that's not a viable option for you.

But, you don't need to sell 100,000 copies on your own to make good money. The beauty of the DIY thing is that you keep all of it after you make the initial investment back.

Where that goes wrong is thinking that spending $120,000 to hire the best players in the best room is going to help sell these copies. Newsflash: they won't.

Like, I don't mean to poo poo all over the system, but working with a name producer may generate some sales from their sycophant fans who collect everything they work on, but not enough to offset the cost of hiring that producer. But, there's that voice in the back of your head saying "If I work with them, they will make it a hit." Repeat for big-name mixers, mastering engineers, etc.

So, too many times I see guys who are going to sell 1,000 copies spending $8k on the album. Well, after you pay to make the album, and make copies, there's nothing left over from those 1,000 sales.

If you can keep your costs under control in the right way (don't hire subpar musicians and engineers, but you don't need household names) and spend say $1,000 to make your album without driving your engineer crazy (these projects tend to turn into a few very long days) then you've made $7,000 from the sales of that 1,000 (I factor 1k for recording, 2k for manufacturing) and now you're net positive.

The best part is you can turn around and spend twice as much on the next record (hopefully in promotion) and maybe instead of selling 1,000, this time you sell 2,000, and you've probably learned a lot of lessons about how to make things better with the same recording budget for the next time as well.

But, this is where your typical 20-something "I want to be famous" type gets turned off: how do you actually sell those 1,000? Gigs. You're going to have to book them, play them, and work hard for them. Some will pay ok, a couple will pay great, most will pay badly.

If you can sell 3 CDs a day, you're going to sell 1,000 over the course of a year. If you can sell 10 CDs per show, that means you need to gig twice a week to make that happen.

It's starting to sound like work, isn't it? Yeah...

It's not impossible to break into the full-time musician status, but it's a long road to getting 2 shows per week, and it's a longer road to get to 4-5 shows per week (40-50CDs sold per week, so 200/mo) which is 2,400 sold for a year.

But, if you're paying say $3000 to sell $24,000 worth of CDs, that's $21k you made that year after your costs, plus a lot of those gigs are paid, and all of a sudden you find yourself making something resembling a living. If those 5 shows a week pay say $50 and you keep selling, you're making $750/week as a musician.

But, the reality is that gigs don't fall into your lap unless you're famous so you've got to hustle to line them up.

We're not talking about lotto winner major label stuff here. You can make the CDs yourself at home with not a ton of equipment, you can book the gigs yourself, and you can play them, but it takes a lot of work, something that someone who is trying to get "famous" is averse to.
Old 20th March 2017
  #38
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bgood's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeq View Post
Well, her father bought a 3% interest in the label. Just as she was signed. That's the equivalent to buying her the deal, sure. Which is what lots of people do. Most of them, to no avail. Imagine how many banks would be happy to loan you $120,000 to make a record, because it's a sure bet that you will get a million-dollar career out of it.




$120,000: about the budget for a slick commercial album with the top Nashville people. That's enough $$ to make the record. Stories like this are popular in hindsight about the people for whom it worked. They give the impression that you can buy your way in. But omitted (because its boring) are the large numbers of people who put up similar dough and it did not work.

We all know that for every TS, there are thousands whose parents, husbands, boyfriends, whatever, sank small fortunes into having a record made and yet have nothing to show for it. People who mortgaged their family homes, blew their inheritances, etc. I know some of them personally. If some money was all it took, there would be 100 new "successful" artists every week. We wouldn't have the time to actually listen to their music. Or even learn all their names.

Most will fail to achieve that commercial success. That's just the reality.
Swift was obviously quite motivated and while never got her appeal millions do! Besides, I'm the opposite of her demo.

Her folks buying 3% of her label is the cherry on the sundae. Bs he grew up with money and was encourage and supported by her folks... Who moved to Nashville to get her closer to the machine.

That level of support is awesome; however, it'd not make a difference if the kid was a musical nightmare and was ugly.

Looks ain't the only thing... In the 80s, 90s I worked as a session player/writer Plenty of "vanity projects"... Ugh. They're still here, though. Watch any of the Housewives of Orange County, New Jersey, etc... One of the cast always ends up doing a vanity project. What the hell, they have a captive audience.
Old 20th March 2017
  #39
" Hopefully some of you guys still find the joy in making music."

Damn right!

Because of good intentions. Good feelings.

Not false hopes for non-existent perfection...or "success" in the eyes of everyone else but yourself.

So do not let others dictate your happiness. Do not let a "goal attainable" dictate your happiness.

Attaining Perfection is a silly dream for the Lost people of this world.....


Striving for perfection, is a gift...a joy....an art....a pleasure


While Understanding there is no such thing....it is priceless


If your music is not bringing you joy....yes, quit now...quit fast...just quit.



OR


maybe you could find the joy in it,


Since you KNOW there COULD Be joy in it, somewhere
Old 20th March 2017
  #40
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgood View Post
Swift was obviously quite motivated and while never got her appeal millions do! Besides, I'm the opposite of her demo.
oh same here, but I have seen her concerts and watched as every young girl in the place is singing along to every word of every song as if it was written about their own lives. I guess that's a talent, too.


Quote:
Her folks buying 3% of her label is the cherry on the sundae. Bs he grew up with money and was encourage and supported by her folks... Who moved to Nashville to get her closer to the machine.

That level of support is awesome; however, it'd not make a difference if the kid was a musical nightmare and was ugly.
exactly
and I would take it one step farther and say they could be good looking and talented but still miss because of 1000 different things they have no control over. Maybe they are just not as 'relatable'. Maybe they had the wrong timing. Maybe their record dropped on the same day as Beyonce's new album. Maybe a DJ played record A instead record B on a whim and a ball got rolling in a certain direction. Maybe they are too much like some other artist. Maybe they are ahead of their time. So many maybes. So many rolls of the dice.

What is inescapable is that there can only be so many people who are 'famous'. If everyone is famous, then no one is famous - they would all blend back into the general population. There are easily tens of millions of wannabees. If there was something that reliably "worked" - anything - be it buying a label, being good looking, sticking to your "dream", or even simply just "being talented" there would still be too many 'successes'. I am sure a cursory survey could find 100,000 good looking. talented people who are sticking to their dream.

Is there room for 100,000 "famous" musicians?

Not only does the industry prefer to concentrate its efforts on a smaller amount of huge artists rather than a larger amount of medium artists, the public too has a rather low saturation point for their Attention. And that point is probably in the dozens at the most for any given genre.

Dozens vs millions - clearly the default must be failure. Big time commercial success is the true anomaly.
Old 20th March 2017
  #41
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noiseflaw's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothjazz View Post
get plenty of sunlight.
And perspective!

Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothjazz View Post
get plenty of sunlight.
Would that you apply this figuratively too...

best.
Old 20th March 2017
  #42
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GeneHall's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by donsolo View Post
The beauty of music as a career is that in your 20s, everyone wants to get famous. It makes sense since fame = record sales to some extent. It's why acts like Radiohead or NIN can go it alone without a label and still make small fortunes.

The whole crowd sourcing thing works if you're already famous. If you're not, then that's not a viable option for you.

But, you don't need to sell 100,000 copies on your own to make good money. The beauty of the DIY thing is that you keep all of it after you make the initial investment back.

Where that goes wrong is thinking that spending $120,000 to hire the best players in the best room is going to help sell these copies. Newsflash: they won't.

Like, I don't mean to poo poo all over the system, but working with a name producer may generate some sales from their sycophant fans who collect everything they work on, but not enough to offset the cost of hiring that producer. But, there's that voice in the back of your head saying "If I work with them, they will make it a hit." Repeat for big-name mixers, mastering engineers, etc.

So, too many times I see guys who are going to sell 1,000 copies spending $8k on the album. Well, after you pay to make the album, and make copies, there's nothing left over from those 1,000 sales.

If you can keep your costs under control in the right way (don't hire subpar musicians and engineers, but you don't need household names) and spend say $1,000 to make your album without driving your engineer crazy (these projects tend to turn into a few very long days) then you've made $7,000 from the sales of that 1,000 (I factor 1k for recording, 2k for manufacturing) and now you're net positive.

The best part is you can turn around and spend twice as much on the next record (hopefully in promotion) and maybe instead of selling 1,000, this time you sell 2,000, and you've probably learned a lot of lessons about how to make things better with the same recording budget for the next time as well.

But, this is where your typical 20-something "I want to be famous" type gets turned off: how do you actually sell those 1,000? Gigs. You're going to have to book them, play them, and work hard for them. Some will pay ok, a couple will pay great, most will pay badly.

If you can sell 3 CDs a day, you're going to sell 1,000 over the course of a year. If you can sell 10 CDs per show, that means you need to gig twice a week to make that happen.

It's starting to sound like work, isn't it? Yeah...

It's not impossible to break into the full-time musician status, but it's a long road to getting 2 shows per week, and it's a longer road to get to 4-5 shows per week (40-50CDs sold per week, so 200/mo) which is 2,400 sold for a year.

But, if you're paying say $3000 to sell $24,000 worth of CDs, that's $21k you made that year after your costs, plus a lot of those gigs are paid, and all of a sudden you find yourself making something resembling a living. If those 5 shows a week pay say $50 and you keep selling, you're making $750/week as a musician.

But, the reality is that gigs don't fall into your lap unless you're famous so you've got to hustle to line them up.

We're not talking about lotto winner major label stuff here. You can make the CDs yourself at home with not a ton of equipment, you can book the gigs yourself, and you can play them, but it takes a lot of work, something that someone who is trying to get "famous" is averse to.
This is exactly right. My partner and I finally found a niche by forging our own path. It has and will most likely never lead to any sort of "fame" or even noteriety but nonetheless, it has enabled us in the long run, but each project seems to lead to another and so on..
After 2 label releases went absolutely nowhere, and a 3rd solo self produced effort only managed to generate debt, we had to wise up. It all came down to finding our personal happiness in what we do with our lives .
With the 4th effort, we embarked down a path that I'm certain most would look their nose down but it worked well for us and without the internet, a label or a huge marketing budget, we managed to sell just over 14,000 CD's at 15-20 bucks a pop, over the course of 15 months.
It meant standing there to close each sale following a live performance as sort of busker of types, but much more . It was a rough start but we started learning about council rules regarding temporary live installations and positively exploiting the opportunity to work for us. An artist named Passenger also did this and in his case, he has gone on to secure a cult following that will probably endure throughout his life. In our case, we chose to b uy a home and build a decent home studio to learn how to start making our own records. We are only just now starting to see the returns of our investment and efforts pay off in the form of our personal happiness and a huge sense of achievement that we would never have experienced if we had handed the lollies off to someone else and took another chance with an outside producer really only interested in their own interests. Not that that is a problem but we could not afford the time, money or potential for another effort obscured by a 3rd party. I think for really good songwriters, it's a very great risk to have a solid vision and then hand it off to someone who may or may not have the the same interests at heart. Our preservation as artists would fall solely to us and while there are times that I look at artists like Ms Swift and think that 120k is getting off really light, we knew the business of music was floundering and tightening it's focus and efforts/cash on the few , the marketable, and those artists which also serve to support the infrastructure of the systems/people already in place. At the time, I was working for an artist who was on the EMI label and at a time when the whole business went pear shaped, swiftly capsizing, no one could find their own arse with both hands all the while this once remarkable company was ravaged [gutted destroyed] by it's current non musical owners . An extraordinary amount of recognisable established artists around the world were suddenly, homeless in a manner of speaking.
Though we started out wanting to write and release and tour our own work, we wound up finding a lot of satisfaction and sustainability in being contributors to others efforts, writing string parts, helping with harmonic structure, writing bridges, guitar parts, vocals, etc and whatever, sans the stress and pressure of also conjuring under funded marketing schemes we knew we would be throwing money into the void any way.
But we were and are still making music and still quite happy with our choices. It really meant letting go of preconceived notions of "success" and filtering out the raging persistent superficiality of an industry ( not the business of music) with a widened platform of the internet giving a cyber outlet for any one and everyone who could string together a cover song. And even in that , we found a stream of income in putting together backing tracks for a string of delusional self absorbed singers whose greatest hope was to find stardom on some reality tv talent show. Not our finest hour but we learned to keep our opinions to ourselves and contribute our little bit in service of their plight and cause. Not a great living but we still manage a cafe life style and keep the lights on. Happy as. Never what we expected but we realised when we stopped trying to force our preconceived expectations and adapted to what was really happening around us, we found peace and sustainability in our small world. Another thing I have learned over the years is that everyone, everywhere having even the slightest role in music is quite insane ( not a bad form of.. but still ) and it is of paramount importance that we find people who share in a particular shared version of insanity that is productive and sustaining. Anyone in this business who does not think that they are insane is either a well behaved work - in- progress or lying to themselves. And the types that pride themselves on being the most highly of "professionals", are actually just really reliably and behaviorally predictable ( see: boring), which is critical to opportunity but yea, is what it is. I would argue that music related people are the most intelligent and sophisticated, highly organised nutters on the planet. Like scientists but even more OCD.
Whether any one agrees with me or not does not matter, I mention this only because at the core of it all, is personal well being and acceptance of oneself above all else. Whether it's music or carpentry or wrapping fish or boat building, we must find a way to accept and respect ourselves if we are to find a path that allows us to define ourselves and embrace our highest most true form. I really believe music makers have no real choice, music decides whether you belong or not, we either listen to that internal voice or we suppress it and go on about leading a miserable lackluster uneventful existence void of depth or personal meaning. The OP's whole notion of I'm just gonna "quit" ****s me to no end and for whatever reasons or circumstances that have led him to air this unhealthy self deprecated thought process, my contribution to this thread is only to lend another voice to the echoing message of so many others who have lived through and persevered in making their music and their living via the only thing that might come naturally to them. At 23, quitting anything is a dangerous endeavor that can lead to a pattern of.. quitting. I know plenty of professional quitters and they are all very effective at quitting because they have had so much practice at it.
I remember having an fortunate experience around the OP's age and I had very profound life changing conversation with a gentleman named Michael Been ( The Call, BRMC) that really put many things into perspective for me. Though Michael sadly is no longer with us, his voice of reasoning at a critical time in my personal development has stuck with me to this day, and every chance I get to repay that universal message extended to me, I will go on this very rant. I'll post this rant with a certain amount of cringe factor, I know how easily ones intentions can be twisted around on them here in a forum..but yea, **** it.

Last edited by GeneHall; 21st March 2017 at 08:00 AM.. Reason: incoherent bamble ****e
Old 21st March 2017
  #43
I sense a lot of bitterness in this post.

The music business is difficult to break into. And the only thing harder than getting into the music business is staying in the music business.

So cheer up and have a go at it. If it doesn't work, it doesn't work. There is no reason to feel defeated and to tear down others who are working to succeed.
Old 21st March 2017
  #44
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Old 21st March 2017
  #45
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kafka's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by bgood View Post
Swift was obviously quite motivated and while never got her appeal millions do! Besides, I'm the opposite of her demo.

Her folks buying 3% of her label is the cherry on the sundae. Bs he grew up with money and was encourage and supported by her folks... Who moved to Nashville to get her closer to the machine.

That level of support is awesome; however, it'd not make a difference if the kid was a musical nightmare and was ugly.

Looks ain't the only thing... In the 80s, 90s I worked as a session player/writer Plenty of "vanity projects"... Ugh. They're still here, though. Watch any of the Housewives of Orange County, New Jersey, etc... One of the cast always ends up doing a vanity project. What the hell, they have a captive audience.
It also doesn't hurt that she has real talent. Sometimes it seems like there's something that pushes mediocrity and suppresses talent. I know that's not fair to the vast majority of people who get even a little attention, but sometimes it's hard to understand the appeal. But in her case, I can't begrudge her any of her success.
Old 22nd March 2017
  #46
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GeneHall's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by kafka View Post
It also doesn't hurt that she has real talent. Sometimes it seems like there's something that pushes mediocrity and suppresses talent. I know that's not fair to the vast majority of people who get even a little attention, but sometimes it's hard to understand the appeal. But in her case, I can't begrudge her any of her success.
Ms Swift does have a genuine talent and for millions of young music listeners she is the benchmark of modern greatness. Whatever cringe factor older or more refined listeners may feel towards her [music], and artists like her, is probably as much or more to do with the gentrification of the music business. The heartfelt sincerity of an advantaged person is remarkably different to the noticeably different genuineness of a struggling artist/writer who battles through each and everyday of their life to arrive at their personal artistic expression. I think the arguable superficiality of some mass marketed music presented as being of profound depth is gauged to a different audience, unaware or uncaring that their version of depth might seem highly underdeveloped or immature to a listener with more experience in years. Where once the opportunity may have been available to the less fortunate or less enabled budding artist, it is certainly not the case today, access fame and super stardom is, or seems reserved for the affluent. Not so much simply because a parent or family can afford to back a career getting off the ground, but also a collective unwillingness on the part of labels to take any/very few risks on anything profound that might challenge the stream lined status quo. No one is going to risk their very secure station and income at a job for the sake of art, for vanity and ego maybe, but not for art. So the less affluent - least enabled artist is on their own and up against epic odds to challenge this.
This is not a grievance on my part but merely an observation when surveying the terrain and trying to understand as much as possible about mass marketed music today and what listeners are regarding as great.
Art and the artist must see past the veneer and illusion of great fame, avoid sacrificing ones every effort to live in envy and jealousy of something that has little to do with be a creator and wanting to live a life immersed and sustained in creativity. Most of the art, music and artists I am personally fond of were all products of reflecting a life of hardship, endurance rarely interrupted by extended periods of prolonged happiness or comfort with their finest efforts all seeming to manifested during their darkest of hours where I can only imagine it was their strength of character and trust in themselves that helped get those creations to their finished stage. Ironically, those same creators , including the ones I would come to know first hand in my life, all seemed to look at their fame with a certain level of embarrassment and humility. And those dark times that were fodder to their most regarded works, are in their unique terms, "the good old days". An artist who has lived a life with little discomfort and every advantage can never fully appreciate or even come close to emulating the raw depth of those that struggled to create. I think so long as we are alive, and we have the even the remotest ability to create, to make music, to write..then we should instead of complaining aloud about all that we as creators don't have, we should be writing and translating those feelings through music.., for ourselves for those listeners who may only ever have the music in their lives to relate to.
Quitting just seems such a waste.

Last edited by GeneHall; 22nd March 2017 at 10:19 AM..
Old 22nd March 2017
  #47
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donsolo's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by boombapdame View Post
@donsolo I'd take #2 and #3 over #1 anytime.
I see where you're coming from, and there's truly nothing wrong with it. But, I'm sure you can appreciate that OP may be interested in becoming a 1, as I am.

IMO if you're in category 2 and not trying to get to category 1, you're a category 3 that happens to make a few bucks in the process.

I've been playing gigs that pay $150/guy lately and if I could figure out how to do that daily, I'd happily leave the day job. At 5 days a week, that's not far off of what I make at the day job and the difference would be made up in things like merch sales.

But, I'm also a guy who will do 3 shows a day if I can.

That's the only real upside as a jazz musician. Because it's so institutionalized and because I can basically play every other style of music on demand, I can possibly string together a full time career out of it. That being said, I have no illusions of getting past the weekend warrior status, but goals are goals and we need to work towards our goals. It's good that you don't share the same goal because there's still room for everyone.
Old 26th March 2017
  #48
.

I'm liquidating most of my studio as we speak.

Packing a few choice pieces into my closets.

And I'm done.

I haven't been involved in music for years now.

I got really depressed and frustrated trying to make music a profession for so long, and it hit me really hard when I turned 40, which was 10 years ago. I'd been playing music since I was 3, went to music schools all my life, started writing, arranging, performing, producing and recording in junior high and through high school and Berklee. I continued once I returned to NYC and ran my own studio for years, before moving to the Hudson Valley and building my home studio, where worked for the next 5+years, until I could work no more.

I worked in a million genres with bands, singers, singer songwriters, soloists, groups and ensembles, created plenty of my own projects, played and recorded in lots of studios, etc. for decades. I worked with SO many inspiring talented musicians!

But for the last 10 years, I've hardly been in my studio at all, it's just been sitting there.

I closed my Manhattan studio at the end of last year, which I also had not used in years, and now I'm shuttering my home studio, and turning it into a studio apartment for rental income.

I'm done.

I have nothing more to say, sing, write, play, produce, perform or record. Creating music brings me no joy any longer, and it hasn't for years.

Life has gone by, and my youth is in the past, along with my music, and so many friends who have gone their own ways, many of whom have also quit music, except for the few who have financial support from a spouse, friends, family or some other investment. And there are a few still struggling along. Very few seem happy - although to be fair, very few people seem happy.


I wish all of you the best in whatever your pursuits are.

Joseph

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Last edited by Sqye; 26th March 2017 at 04:39 AM..
Old 26th March 2017
  #49
Lives for gear
 
JoeyM's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sqye View Post
.

I'm liquidating most of my studio as we speak.

Packing a few choice pieces into my closets.

And I'm done.
Definitely pack choice things in your closet, but everyone in this conversations owes something to themselves right now, and that's to have a standby studio mode.
Like Sqye's "Gearslutz" song, it's hilarious and listenable over and over, but has a great feel to it and that's unthinkable if you have a talent like that to not have access to it.

I've been through some of the pains here and am going middle ground, to keep building acoustic panels and get my gear sorted what is mix studio and what is field recording equipment.
Old 26th March 2017
  #50
Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeyM View Post
Definitely pack choice things in your closet, but everyone in this conversations owes something to themselves right now, and that's to have a standby studio mode.
Like Sqye's "Gearslutz" song, it's hilarious and listenable over and over, but has a great feel to it and that's unthinkable if you have a talent like that to not have access to it.

I've been through some of the pains here and am going middle ground, to keep building acoustic panels and get my gear sorted what is mix studio and what is field recording equipment.
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Thanks for the kind words, dude.

I hope all's well with you!

.
Old 26th March 2017
  #51
Gear Head
 

You know, there's nothing wrong with getting older and realizing that your current path is making you unhappy. It's natural to have doubts. It's natural to fail. More times than not, I've seen people obsess over a music 'career' and cause more misery than otherwise. I don't understand why money has to be attached to it. You can write music and be involved in music without getting a paycheck from it. There's a whole world out there. You might find some other craft that you enjoy just as much. You might find another passion. Giving up on a career in music is giving up on associating money to music. It's not giving up on music. Don't listen to the insults in the thread about your age, lack of experience, or whatever. Music is a notoriously difficult career to break into, even if you are skilled - there's only so many jobs to go around. If anything, perhaps realizing that the music industry is not for you at the young age of 23, could be one of the wisest choices you make in life.

People who succeed in the music industry are not inherently any better than people who don't. You determine your own success and happiness. You need to decide whether or not a music career will really make you happy, or if it is just a 'grass is greener' emotion that has driven you down this path.

I'll say one thing - I spent a long time struggling in the industry and made quite a decent living for half a decade. But you know what? I'm now working less hours, no nights/weekends, making twice the money doing software development, I am happier, and I'm writing better music because I'm writing for the sake of music. And, again, I'm happier.

So, again, listen to your gut. Listen to yourself. Don't let people insult you into believing that their lives are more meaningful because they drudged through the music industry mud, get a paycheck, and you didn't/don't. There's more to life than music, believe it or not. And sometimes realizing that makes your music so much better - because then you actually have life experience to write about.
Old 27th March 2017
  #52
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by ithinktherefore View Post
You know, there's nothing wrong with getting older and realizing that your current path is making you unhappy. It's natural to have doubts. It's natural to fail. More times than not, I've seen people obsess over a music 'career' and cause more misery than otherwise. I don't understand why money has to be attached to it. You can write music and be involved in music without getting a paycheck from it. There's a whole world out there. You might find some other craft that you enjoy just as much. You might find another passion. Giving up on a career in music is giving up on associating money to music. It's not giving up on music. Don't listen to the insults in the thread about your age, lack of experience, or whatever. Music is a notoriously difficult career to break into, even if you are skilled - there's only so many jobs to go around. If anything, perhaps realizing that the music industry is not for you at the young age of 23, could be one of the wisest choices you make in life.

People who succeed in the music industry are not inherently any better than people who don't. You determine your own success and happiness. You need to decide whether or not a music career will really make you happy, or if it is just a 'grass is greener' emotion that has driven you down this path.

I'll say one thing - I spent a long time struggling in the industry and made quite a decent living for half a decade. But you know what? I'm now working less hours, no nights/weekends, making twice the money doing software development, I am happier, and I'm writing better music because I'm writing for the sake of music. And, again, I'm happier.

So, again, listen to your gut. Listen to yourself. Don't let people insult you into believing that their lives are more meaningful because they drudged through the music industry mud, get a paycheck, and you didn't/don't. There's more to life than music, believe it or not. And sometimes realizing that makes your music so much better - because then you actually have life experience to write about.
.

It's also ok to give up music.

No one is obligated to keep doing something just because they did it before, or did it for a long time.

It's ok to give up and move on to other things.

It doesn't mean you don't love it, or you don't have talent, or whatever.

There is a general attitude here that people should continue to do music, no matter what - which is not necessarily true.

People should be ALLOWED to give up music, and should be SUPPORTED if they are trying to stop because they feel it's too difficult to continue.

It must be like a drug addict in recovery hanging out with addict friends.

I find that once you make the decision to stop, people are always like, "oh, don't worry, I'm sure you'll come back to it eventually", or, "when it's time, you will return to have a healthier relationship with it", or "once you remove money or career from the equation, you can enjoy it much more".

Well, I've tried all of the above, and I'm just not into music anymore. Poeple should RESPECT this if this is what your decision is, and not keep trying to convince you that you don't know what's good for you, or that sooner or later you'll "come around".

Screw that. If you wanna stop, just stop. It's not worth torturing yourself if you're not happy!

The world is a BIG place, and music is NOT the only meaningful thing in life.

And if you DO decide to stop, it doesn't necessarily mean you're not talented enough, or whatever. That's all BS.

You should do what you WANT to do, and do what you NEED to do to survive and live the best life you can.

I'm just saying.

Don't listen to anyone, or let them convince you not to stop if you wanna stop.

Do want you want!

And all the best!

.
Old 27th March 2017
  #53
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This is what it feels like for me.

Getting clean is getting away from music.
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Old 27th March 2017
  #54
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sqye View Post
.

It's also ok to give up music.

No one is obligated to keep doing something just because they did it before, or did it for a long time.

It's ok to give up and move on to other things.

It doesn't mean you don't love it, or you don't have talent, or whatever.

There is a general attitude here that people should continue to do music, no matter what - which is not necessarily true.

People should be ALLOWED to give up music, and should be SUPPORTED if they are trying to stop because they feel it's too difficult to continue.

It must be like a drug addict in recovery hanging out with addict friends.

I find that once you make the decision to stop, people are always like, "oh, don't worry, I'm sure you'll come back to it eventually", or, "when it's time, you will return to have a healthier relationship with it", or "once you remove money or career from the equation, you can enjoy it much more".

Well, I've tried all of the above, and I'm just not into music anymore. Poeple should RESPECT this if this is what your decision is, and not keep trying to convince you that you don't know what's good for you, or that sooner or later you'll "come around".

Screw that. If you wanna stop, just stop. It's not worth torturing yourself if you're not happy!

The world is a BIG place, and music is NOT the only meaningful thing in life.

And if you DO decide to stop, it doesn't necessarily mean you're not talented enough, or whatever. That's all BS.

You should do what you WANT to do, and do what you NEED to do to survive and live the best life you can.

I'm just saying.

Don't listen to anyone, or let them convince you not to stop if you wanna stop.

Do want you want!

And all the best!

.
Yep. Something always irked me about the "follow your dreams" crowd. Nothing wrong with it. I think everyone should try to pursue their dreams! But you need to be a realist. You need a full inner understanding of yourself to verify whatever path you take. Even if there were 1000 LeBron James in the world there's only enough roster space for much less. Once you stop being so hard on yourself, stop caring what others think, and end your self inflicted prisons you will never be happy.

But again, definitely follow your dreams. But be open to other dreams. Recognize that it's systematically impossible for everyone to live their dream and do your best. But if it's causing you misery and you honestly don't feel like pushing through - THAT'S FINE! It's a big world out there.

Are you doing music for money? Are you writing music as a challenge? Do you just want to look "cool" to others? Do you just want to enjoy music? Everyone has different drives. Everyone is unique. And everyone grows. Ok end ramble.
Old 27th March 2017
  #55
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothjazz View Post
get plenty of sunlight.
I only just saw this thread. Sounds lame to say, but hang in there. I'm a moody guy, as well, as are a lot of artist types, though it's often possible for many of us to forget -- or deny -- our dark spells when we're not in them.

Do take steps to put yourself back in charge of your life and feelings. Even going through the motions helps -- if nothing else doing normal chores and taking care of those tiresome, at times seemingly soul-crushing every day tasks keeps things from stacking up even higher around one, emotionally. And, of course, for many of us, exercise helps -- even as our wounded emotional selves deny it -- how could something as 'mundane' as exercise help with dark, spirit-withering feelings? But it can. As I've told myself a few times: avoid the 'winter spiral.'

Hang in there.
Old 27th March 2017
  #56
it sounds like you've realized something important. many people go through life doing things mindlessly for nebulous reasons. at least you can now figure out the correct path for you. because it was not making music.

i went through a similar catharsis before. what you do is you STOP doing the thing that you think your supposed to be doing (because somewhere someone told you it was what will make you happy)-----and you START doing the thing that you have a burning desire for (the thing that you LIKE doing)-----only then will you feel fulfilled.
(because then it is not about some ambigious future monetary reward etc.----instead it is just a moment to moment thing; where you are just doing what do because you like it---the actual act of it----and at some point you will just become so good at it because you spend so much time at it----that it will end up being valuable)


and I'm not even talking about some big dream thing, i also dont believe telling people to follow their dreams because dreams are nothing, they aren't real, only what you DO, in life is real...it's actions you take, the driving force of will and action.

i'm talkin about what do you LIKE to do, on a daily basis, since you were a child, from hour to hour, what naturally did u just "do"

but even then, it still requires maximum effort, even with incredible talent. conversely, if you realize you have zero talent or desire for something, then why keep at it?---go find that purpose that burns inside of you.
Old 27th March 2017
  #57
Lives for gear
 
DigitMus's Avatar
 

There's something I've been saying/quoting for decades: nobody is a musician because they WANT to - they're a musician because they HAVE to be. It's always been a state of being. If you're a musician, when you quit, you'll eventually be back. If you're in the music biz for any other reason, you'll move on. This is simply a personal observation from the trenches for almost 5 decades.
Old 27th March 2017
  #58
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by starsoul707 View Post
it sounds like you've realized something important. many people go through life doing things mindlessly for nebulous reasons. at least you can now figure out the correct path for you. because it was not making music.

i went through a similar catharsis before. what you do is you STOP doing the thing that you think your supposed to be doing (because somewhere someone told you it was what will make you happy)-----and you START doing the thing that you have a burning desire for (the thing that you LIKE doing)-----only then will you feel fulfilled.
(because then it is not about some ambigious future monetary reward etc.----instead it is just a moment to moment thing; where you are just doing what do because you like it---the actual act of it----and at some point you will just become so good at it because you spend so much time at it----that it will end up being valuable)


and I'm not even talking about some big dream thing, i also dont believe telling people to follow their dreams because dreams are nothing, they aren't real, only what you DO, in life is real...it's actions you take, the driving force of will and action.

i'm talkin about what do you LIKE to do, on a daily basis, since you were a child, from hour to hour, what naturally did u just "do"

but even then, it still requires maximum effort, even with incredible talent. conversely, if you realize you have zero talent or desire for something, then why keep at it?---go find that purpose that burns inside of you.
.

Great post. Amen.

I will say, though, the tough thing is that not everyone has something burning inside them. And even of we do, it may not be possible to convert this into a bill-paying, life-sustaining activity.

As you say, even if you CAN identify the things that drive and inspire you, it can be tough and take a lot of work to convert this into any kind of day to day job.

But I think your principle is correct. Finding activities and work that are in line with our personalities is crucial.

There's no magic bullet. Life is tough sometimes. It's tough enough when you're doing something you love and trying to survive. It becomes even tougher when you have to change courses in the middle of your life after living a certain way for so long.

But life can be tough for everyone. And it's imperative we try to understand, support and inspire one another, so we can get through the tough parts together.

To the OP, I'm sending love, understanding and support, amigo!

Rest assured, you are NOT alone in this reality! So many of us struggle with the same issues!

.
Old 27th March 2017
  #59
Quote:
Originally Posted by DigitMus View Post
There's something I've been saying/quoting for decades: nobody is a musician because they WANT to - they're a musician because they HAVE to be. It's always been a state of being. If you're a musician, when you quit, you'll eventually be back. If you're in the music biz for any other reason, you'll move on. This is simply a personal observation from the trenches for almost 5 decades.
.

I actually disagree with this.

Again, I don't think it's fair or supportive to encourage people with this kind of rhetoric, if music is bringing only sorrow and failure.

Again, you can say people are heroin addicts because "they have to be". I think it's BS and I think it's weak.

If music brings too much suffering, I say **** it, and move on.

We are human. We have will power. We can make choices that offer more self-love and self-sustainability, choices that bring us self-respect and the ability to provide for ourselves and our families.

Do you know how many SUPER talented musicians I know who are broke and miserable, and in many cases even "professionals"?

It's not only about creating. It's also about the WORLD you live in, and the people you interact with.

No matter how talented you are, if music and musical work brings only suffering, I say good riddance!

.
Old 27th March 2017
  #60
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sqye View Post
.
I got really depressed and frustrated trying to make music a profession for so long, and it hit me really hard when I turned 40, which was 10 years ago.

But for the last 10 years, I've hardly been in my studio at all, it's just been sitting there.

I have nothing more to say, sing, write, play, produce, perform or record. Creating music brings me no joy any longer, and it hasn't for years.

Very few seem happy - although to be fair, very few people seem happy.
I wish you great success in your next ventures, whatever they are, and I hope that the joy you felt in music either revives, or you find that same joy in a new field!

Did you find that people weren't using your studio because the industry/funding is dying, or for some other reason (like you weren't seen as "cool" as the 20 something EDM producers)?

I think we all go through rough times at different stages and I hope you rediscover that happiness as you begin the next stage.
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