Are you hungry? Then you need to put in work to Eat!
The music business is like any other business. Who you know plays a vital role in how far you can potentially get. How often you’re seen at social events also plays a role. Are you on social sites? Here is a few great question for you up-and-coming artists and people trying to break into the entertainment world – What hours of the day are you attempting to network? What is your brand? Are you marketable? And if so, what makes you different and separate from the rest?
Yeah, just like I stated the music biz is just like any other biz. Once you get that in your head and cherish that idea like the Bible then you are already one leg up on the competition. So why do I say this? Money is involved – POINT BLANK. Do you seriously think anyone is going to let you play with their money unless you have a well thought out plan with measurable goals, budget plan, marketing strategy, target demographic and a sense of branding? I’m being real with you. This isn’t playing monopoly at home and trying to be the champion with Mr. Monopoly on the game board. We’re talking real life dollars & cents, percentages and profit gain/loss margins. Ok, let me slow down and let you absorb that for a little hot minute. Are you with me now? OK good, so let’s break it down what I just said and why.
So you want to be a rock star, with a big house and five cars? Cool me too I ain’t gonna sit here and front. But let’s be real with ourselves because there are many hungry people on their grind out there. People who do their homework and research have a better chance. Why? Because you understand this is business. You as an artist or a businessperson trying to break into ANY industry need to think and operate like a business, in fact the CEO of the business. You need to be Don Juan, the decision maker, the go-getter and the person who is always trying to figure out where that next dollar is going to come from. Are you with me so far?
So who are you? What kind of person are you? Are you willing to leave your fate in someone else’s hands? Or are you going to wanna be involved in what happens in your life? Do you think Jay-Z or Diddy let someone else decide what they are doing when they wake up in the morning? Nope. They control their destinies. They know you need to think corporate and these two cats aren’t corporate from the get. Knowledge is key and power will follow with hard work. Here is a quote to live by, “Live as if you will die tomorrow and learn as if you will live forever” – Gandhi.
OK, now that we are done with the motivational speaking let’s get down to it. Are you hungry? Then put in work! Ain’t no one is going to help you unless you are willing to help yourself. Ain’t no one going to give you free studio time. Ain’t no one is going to grab you in the street and offer you that perfect position at a publishing company, record label or marketing agency. You gotta network. “How do I network?” That’s a great question. How are you supposed to speak to people you don’t know and chop it up with them? It’s a pyramid effect. Someone you know may know someone, even if that person is a low level player (keep in mind we’re all players in this game no matter the battle field). Introductions lead to chit chattin’, chit chattin’ leads to making plans to meet more people and so on and so forth. I know kinda basic right? You probably think, “this dude is spitting the obvious”. You’re right to an extent right now I am, but the obvious is oblivious some people. One piece of advice I will give you is that you need to put yourself out there and extend yourself. If you’re an inspiring artist or trying to break into the business you’ll need to donate some time, you’ll need to offer to do hooks and lay vocals, you’ll need to offer to lend a hand to help someone in a better position than you are in to make a social bond that will EVENTUALLY lead to good things to come. Nothing will happen over night.
So are you starting to understand the business? Business mindset needed – CHECK. Knowing who you are and what you can offer – CHECK. Networking needed – CHECK. Extend yourself to help – CHECK. Realize nothing will happen over night – CHECK. Are you hungry? Then you need to put in work to Eat!
© 2012 J. Akly, Real Industry Talk