Friends, we need to discuss something. This is a topic that is sensitive.
Before we begin, I will be speaking in some broad brush strokes, but I am starting to see the negative impact on my fellow engineers and artists, who follow a "program" or "e-book" or "subscription" based programs that promise a career or professional audio skills or making lots of money in the music industry, when in reality it's just setting them up to be disappointed and stuck after all the material is consumed.
I want to give a quick word of wisdom that I needed to hear one time. If you don't make it through the whole blog, I want you to at least hear this......
You are not missing out on anything.
There is no short cut in this industry or life. No one has found the secret sauce or cracked the code. The only depth and fulfillment there is to be had is found in the actual work and process. There is only one thing you need to do - show up, keep working and focus on surrounding yourself with people who don't promise a few thousand dollars a month or a quick way to fast track your career.
You're not missing out. There is nothing wrong with you and no one in those ads has discovered something that everyone else has missed.
It's ok. You’re fine, keep working and keep staying in your lane. Keep your head down. You have time, you always have time. What you need is patience and discipline and confidence, that in you there are gifts and abilities that are far greater then any ebook or exclusive group.
Don't let someones catchy slogan or branding become your ceiling or end goal.
With saying that, I fully realize that everyone is at a different stage. There are plenty of things to learn and a lot of these programs that float around your Facebook feed or sponsored Instagram ads, can teach you things. It's not all bad, but it's rarely a great example of anything with depth or longevity.
It's interesting because these programs are text book TV infomercial pitching. They almost all surround around one person who achieved something, at some point, that sounds impressive and if you do what they did, then you to can also achieve something impressive. They claim that everyone else’s program is spam but their program is foolproof. The majority of these programs are ran by people who have not had any longevity nor actual industry experience and this is the problem.
We have flavor of the month entrepreneurs teaching our engineers and artists how to have a career, when in reality these people themselves have not really done anything significant in the very industry they claim to have cracked the code in.
Before we go any further, this does not come from a place of jealousy or bitterness. This comes from a place of concern for our industry and the future of the industry. It's a warning - a call to depth and wisdom over short term gains or a Spotify playlist feature or one sync placement with MTV.
It's a call to not settle for someones ceiling of money they made or the way they may have stumbled upon one or two good years in the industry and turned it into a program. This is a call to something greater.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to help other people make a living. I have my own mentoring program and I tell every one of my clients, it’s not a get rich quick program, it’s not a guarantee and at the end of the day if you don't have a long term vision of 10, 20, 30, 40 years then we would not be a good fit. It requires hard work and the longevity comes from depth, not quantity or sales funnels or diversifying yourself to become a one stop shop.... enjoy your burn out.
Anyone can make a little money. Anyone can work ads, SEO, and email lists. While all these things can help us grow a business, the question always becomes, are you happy? Are you fulfilled? Are you doing the work you want to do? Is this sustainable? Are you dependent on someones else's success? Do you feel like your still missing something?
We are so easily distracted by a little money and fame and hopes of success, that we have missed the fact that these teachers are making a living off their programs and not music.
This is a problem.
We have an industry that is being taught by crafty marketers, flashy ebooks, pretty branding, and FOMO. This is not the way to longevity and a career. While it may help briefly, I beg my readers to not fall for the trap.
This has nothing to do with the people themselves who create these programs. I think they have great intentions but at the end of the day, the way they make a living is off of selling a story of rags to riches... temporary riches.... and then claiming you can do it too. These programs can help but I’m starting to hear from people who are frustrated, who feel like they were taken advantage of... and it needs to stop.
My wisdom to you, is to not settle for someone else's achievements or skill level. One of the most impactful things in my musical journey was when one of my friends told me to stop chasing him and his success. His success and life was not for me. I would never fully believe in myself and find my own lane and path until I could see past him and his success. I could learn from him, but I didn’t need him. He wasn’t doing anything unique other then showing up each day, staying in his lane, and being so patient. He loves the work, loves the process and that gives him the fire to keep going.
Don't let an ebook tell you what you can and can't do. Don't let an exclusive inner circle make you feel like your missing out on work if you don't pay every month to belong. Don't let a Youtube channel tell you that you don't need a studio to make great music. If you desire to have a studio, then work your butt off and make it the best studio you can dream of. Just because you can't afford the studio right this moment doesn't mean you have to give that up.
Put in the work, learn to love the journey and you will learn to see that you are a beast of a person fully capable of creating great things that represent you. We need you to be you, not a clone of a video course. Not a clone of a YouTube channel personality and not a clone of a Facebook group consultant whose key to success is paid ads and quantity over quality.
A lot of these people are selling you a near sighted dream that was birthed out of their own fears and failures of never really making it in the industry. It's far easier to sell the idea and dream of success then to actually have done it for years and years.
The majority of these programs are lead by people who made money off you! Not music, not number one songs, not actually doing the work for more then a few years. Don’t be fooled by someone flashing what they made one year as a reason to why they can create a career for you. You have no idea where that money really came from.
I want you to seek out the wisdom of those that have been in the industry for a long time. I challenge you to find the people who have weathered the storm. I urge you to put in the work for yourself and not bank on someone else's brief success to be your end goal. I want to challenge you to forget about the money that these guys promise and ask you to keep your head down and do what you want to do. You can truly do anything in this industry. If I have learned anything, it's that we are all humans, all with the same 24 hours in a day. We all have the desire to be ourselves and belong. Don't ever think that someone else's money or achievements should be your goal. That will leave you empty when you achieve it. This I have learned first hand.
Once again, I am not saying all of these programs are bad and that they don't add value on some level, I just urge you to make sure you're not using them to solve a much bigger issue at hand. These programs will not solve the issue of you not putting in the work, being patient and having a long term vision. This will take time, but I can assure you it's so worth it.
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