There are so many ways to build a strong career as a musician. Unfortunately, the arts aren’t necessarily encouraged in many schools. Even in society, the arts are often viewed as an impossible field to break into. However, so many talented people who are passionate about the arts figure it out. If you love music and can’t fathom doing anything else with your career, there are a few ways to do what you love and make a living.
- Refine your craft
Work on becoming a better musician. Make sure that you’re practicing at least one hour every single day. If you’d like to make music your full-time profession, it’s so important to make sure that you hone in on your craft and develop your own voice. Truthfully, you should work on practicing more than three hours a day as a musician. However, start small and work up to more hours. Enroll in the music department of a college like Kent State and learn the craft of music. Music theory, management and pedagogy all play a role in making you a well-rounded musician.
- Join a union
In most major cities, there are unions for musicians. You can join as a musician for hire and follow the steps to get into the union. As you join and gigs become available, you can use these gigs as a time to share your talents. As you continue to flourish, take advantage of all the benefits and programs the union has to offer.
- Produce your own albums
Sure, it’ll involve some upfront costs, but produce your own work. Make sure your work is copywritten and protected. Form an LLC and get the ball rolling. If you want to work with other artists or local musicians, don’t hesitate to reach out. The worst they can say is no. Most people don’t take musicians seriously if they don’t have a product in their hands. In the music world, an EP or single is almost equivalent to a business card.
- Use your connections
Keep in touch with the people you went to school with. The music department family is a strong network. Network with other musicians in the union and in the area. Create bonds through social media. A lot of opportunities don’t just come from what you know. In many cases, it’s all about who you know. As long as you become intentional about putting your name out there, make sure that you learn the names of others. Be genuine in your efforts to make friends and meet new people in the industry. Don’t just look at it from a standpoint of how you can get your business card or CD in their hand. Remember to look at it from a standpoint of how you can get to know and serve them better. When people look at you as someone who is genuine and has the work ethic to back it up, they’ll remember you.
- Create a strong online base
It’s free and easy to start an online base of followers. Use platforms like SoundCloud, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube to get things going. Develop a brand presence with pictures, videos and audio clips of your music.
When you follow these five steps and back them up with a strong work ethic, you’ll develop the career you desire as a musician. Always remember to be positive, dependable and easy to work with. These traits make a lethal combination that very few people will want to turn down.