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Old 2009-12-17, 21:46
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Are you Serious in Music making?...or is it just a Hobby?

Once in a while I get the above question, and sometimes I'd say is just a hobby, but to tell you the truth I'm not completely sure. There are a lot of factors that can contribute into your particular answer, but most of the time I think I fall in between those two answers.

In reality, I just bothered to make this thread, because of my 15 year old daughter. She's a sophomore and very involved and devoted into her guitar class at school. She has learned how to play the guitar very quickly, along with her brother (but that's another story) lol. She loves music, she's very open minded as to her music listening, She has taken on singing as well, and she has a beautiful voice (she doesn't take that compliment from me though) Her career goals are very vague at the moment, but whenever she gets asked the question, she quickly replies "I want to be a musician, and I want to go to Berkley". When we tell her there are other options, she doesn't want to hear it!

Now I've had many talks with her about it, and I've explained that relying om music alone for a living is probably not so smart at the present time. She always comes out saying that we don't have faith in her, we don't support her, and that she will follow her dreams no matter what. Then she rubs it in our face, the fact that we did not follow our dreams, and she's right!, but here is where the factors I was talking about before, play a huge part in the decision making.

Now, my wife & I, are not such strict parents, not old fashioned at all, and we don't pressure our kids into thinking like we do, but we like to present as many ideas or options as possible for them to explore and figure out.

The Factors I want her to take into consideration before she decides on a career:

First I wanted to ask you guys personally,

-Is music making Serious or just a hobby? and please tell me why. Also tell me if you're a singer, part of a band, play instruments, just use software.

Now based on your answers, I have the following questions separated by answer:

If you answered Serious:

This would probably mean you're currently working on your musical career, or looking into it, or you have achieved something already.

-Is it/was it worth spending your hard earned money on tuition for a musical career? or do you recommend going for another career and doing music on the side, and see if you get lucky somehow?

-How much of a chance do you guys think a good singer alone has Vs. an accomplished musician alone, Vs. being part of a full band in today's music business structure.

-Do you guys think that music sells well nowadays?, implying that you're doing all these: CDS/Gigs/promoting online/selling merchandise. Do you guys thinks music alone is good enough to make a decent living.


If you answered Just a Hobby:

-Why just a hobby? in your case.

-At any point did you ever want to develop your music skills any further or are you just happy with instant gratification?, as in "I did this quick track and I feel good that it came out decent".
I mean have you ever wondered that your song could be a hit sometime? that it can be used in a commercial, Film, or Video game?

-If you have the chance to prove your skills/talent (get a job offer or something along those lines). Would you leave your current job/career in an instant? even though that would mean you have to move out/relocate, leave your family for a while (if you're not single), and your wife or rest of the family are not supporting you.

-You feel that your life/work/responsibilities are far more important than your meaningless music making?

-Never was given the chance to develop or show my natural talents (I fall in this one). Was raised in a very poor household, wasn't very informed or educated (lack of internet, P.C., or friends), Found out too late in life that I had this talent in music.

-Feel that the music business right now is broken and it wouldn't be worth your time/money getting involved.


I know this is a lot of questions and a very long thread. Sorry I couldn't make it any shorter!
I will really appreciate all your comments, answers and point of views, and I will definitely use your advice and will show my daughter your thoughts on the matter.

Thanks a million!!!

Ed





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  #2  
Old 2009-12-17, 22:04
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It's an expensive hobby for me. I would love a job in the industry in either the composition or business side of things. But I wouldn't want a job in my hobby genre. I think I need the separation I would be happy to write jingles or film scores or something like that but I wouldn't want to create synthpop music professionally. It would ruin what I enjoy about making this kind of music. Mostly, I answer to no one and I can make it sound however I want.

I would be happy for the rest of my life just messing around with music and working a completely unrelated job.
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  #3  
Old 2009-12-17, 22:13
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@selfdude,

I hear you, but what if you were given the freedom to do whatever you like with your music (even though there's probably no such thing). Wouldn't you want to create some Synthpop the way you've always envision it to be. Have you ever heard a Hit Radio song, and said to yourself "I know I can do that song so much better"
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Old 2009-12-18, 01:49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecopro View Post
@selfdude,

I hear you, but what if you were given the freedom to do whatever you like with your music (even though there's probably no such thing). Wouldn't you want to create some Synthpop the way you've always envision it to be. Have you ever heard a Hit Radio song, and said to yourself "I know I can do that song so much better"
That's my point, I have complete freedom now. If someone were paying me I would have to do something that I wasn't so emotionally invested in. I'm not saying that you shouldn't like your job, just if you make your job something that defines you, you may end up hating both the job and the passion.

I'm old enough to have been forced to learn the concept of working to live, not living to work. 10 years of retail and restaurant management have taught me a lot.

I think that's why so many people in the creative arts burn out and do other things.
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  #5  
Old 2011-10-13, 23:50
M1chael0rr M1chael0rr is offline
 
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Ecopro and others...

I have been a DJ and had good and bad from it.
I am also a fully qualified finance professional and had good & bad from it.
I also studied piano with a truly amazing teacher who was qualified to Master of Arts; she had won competitions and was fully proficient at piano and harpsichord. She had played for Philharmonic orchestras, so really you couldn't get much better.

I asked her why she wasn't making loads of money etc...she explained that the music business, even classical, is a very fickle industry. If you are not connected, doors will always remain closed, no matter how hard you bang.

She had a small portfolio of students and she was content with that.

I know others will argue real talent always rises to the top, sometimes it does, but in very exceptional cases.

Its like most things in life, if your name, background, personality, style and looks are accepted by those at the trough, maybe you will be invited to taste.
If not, no matter what industry you follow, you will only be allowed to eat what they let you eat.

If your daughter gets pleasure from her musical talent, encourage it and try to get her to build her life around something which pays the bills, which doesn't destroy her spirit and leaves her with enough energy to devote to her hobby and to her family.
  #6  
Old 2011-10-14, 00:23
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mcatalao mcatalao is offline
 
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Lightbulb

I think you are making the wrong questions.

It is very difficult to be only a musician nowadays.

I'm a very thoughtfull guy when it comes to my stability and my ability to support me and my family.

Koshdukays post resumes some of the aspects of it, with the difference that i recorded 3 cd's with Navegante, and had 2 other pro projects after that one.

I could do all this, and at the same time worked as a consultant.

The most important is to have a second plan, and i don't think berkley would be the best option. She will depend a lot on you, and tumble a lot.

I studyed piano amd flute in the conservatorium, up to 5fth grade, then stopped. I really do a lot musically with that, but in the meantime i studyed jazz by myself, and i'm now thinkin joiningna jazz school. Will i quit my job? Not at all. I have bills to pay, children to feed.

So, i would put jer studying in a reference school, but make her study other area too, so that she has a Back up plan. And bottom line, unless she wants to be a classic player (and for that she would hav to start reeeeaaaly young), a good msic school for the rest is enough.

I never qit music.i know in my heart thqts the thing i like most in my life after my family. B
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  #7  
Old 2011-10-14, 00:23
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Lunesis Lunesis is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M1chael0rr View Post
Ecopro and others...

I have been a DJ and had good and bad from it.
I am also a fully qualified finance professional and had good & bad from it.
I also studied piano with a truly amazing teacher who was qualified to Master of Arts; she had won competitions and was fully proficient at piano and harpsichord. She had played for Philharmonic orchestras, so really you couldn't get much better.

I asked her why she wasn't making loads of money etc...she explained that the music business, even classical, is a very fickle industry. If you are not connected, doors will always remain closed, no matter how hard you bang.

She had a small portfolio of students and she was content with that.

I know others will argue real talent always rises to the top, sometimes it does, but in very exceptional cases.

Its like most things in life, if your name, background, personality, style and looks are accepted by those at the trough, maybe you will be invited to taste.
If not, no matter what industry you follow, you will only be allowed to eat what they let you eat.

If your daughter gets pleasure from her musical talent, encourage it and try to get her to build her life around something which pays the bills, which doesn't destroy her spirit and leaves her with enough energy to devote to her hobby and to her family.
Precisely this. High school never ends and everything ends up being a popularity contest.
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Old 2009-12-17, 22:21
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grueser2 grueser2 is offline
 
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Hi Ed,

I guess I would always say follow your dreams...for a reasonable period of time. That means don't burn any bridges, and have a plan B. It's a hard nut to crack the music business, but if she's good give her support, if it's a parental ego thing...look out! It has to be her love of music that's only going to make it work. I've only been playing less than a year, and only compose originals...that way no one knows when I play, if I made a mistake(that's supposed to be funny). One of the songs I produced is smoking the competiotion in a contest it's in, and these other bands are good. Had I listened to anyone about spending $4,000 for a keyboard, I never would have ordered one, and wouldn't be doing what I am. I just dropped another $600 today for my PH software, and I'm not looking back. I'm more satisfied with my self now than I've ever been, and I'm 56...so I say give her all the support she needs...oh, and lots of money! You never know! By the way I do it for pleasure, it's just as hobby for me.

Mark

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  #9  
Old 2009-12-17, 23:42
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avasopht avasopht is offline
 
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SERIOUS

Is it/was it worth spending your hard earned money on tuition for a musical career? or do you recommend going for another career and doing music on the side, and see if you get lucky somehow?

I would never aim to get lucky, but rather increase my chances with calculated skill. Tuition is an investment of both time and money, and such investments are important in increasing the value of the music you create. So yes!

How much of a chance do you guys think a good singer alone has Vs. an accomplished musician alone, Vs. being part of a full band in today's music business structure.

Neither here nor there; all that matters are the right decisions being made. Now the first and most important question one must ask is, "what is your life purpose?" Without knowing that all other questions can never be answered.

The success of any act can only be determined (or assessed) in reflection and probably predicted based on how they relate to the current trends - and by trends I don't mean what the masses are following, just which dots on the map can relate to the act.

Do you guys think that music sells well nowadays?, implying that you're doing all these: CDS/Gigs/promoting online/selling merchandise. Do you guys thinks music alone is good enough to make a decent living.

Entertainment sells period! Edit: that being said, you can sell your musical services; it's not all about being an act. Sure you can sell your act, but your services are just as valuable and can create a nice and comfortable income.

---

Disclaimer: I answered to "being serious about my music" but am still amateur as I am still working on my plan at the moment (as well as my craft). I have decided to pursue music and the arts because it supports my life purpose, the part where I create works that can help bring people to enjoyment/relief, strengthen communities with positive viewpoints, etc. This is not just through music but through other creative means, such as film ... not sure if that's helping

---

I hope things work out for your daughter as a lack of preparation for the world of music can lead to lots of heartache when presented with new cultures and ways of life. She will succeed so long as the right decisions are made, and she is showing good character already by declaring her intentions to achieve her music career through studying.

However I think it is a danger to refuse to understand more of how the world works, not least the fields surrounding her intended career. If she only knows how to tune guitars she will have no say in the wood used, so if she were to try to sell a brand of guitars she could make some terrible mistakes. Likewise it is good to have a grasp of other fields, such as business, economics, sociology ... well there are lots of fields involved in music. And not everything has to be about music; it's great to be well rounded.

Where I worked our MD had already sold millions of music CD's is a Bafta judge and heads a few charities. The company founders tried it in the music business too with a band, and just about half of the office had serious musical skills, be it engineering, mixing, DJ'ing or music ... and their main profession was software development. You don't have to be a one trick wonder/dog I don't call it plan B, I call it support of plan A - my life purpose </essay>
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Last edited by avasopht; 2009-12-17 at 23:44. Reason: Clarity my brother ...
  #10  
Old 2009-12-18, 16:25
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ecopro ecopro is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THEPLACE View Post
Now the first and most important question one must ask is, "what is your life purpose?" Without knowing that all other questions can never be answered.
Woah! that is a very deep and difficult question to answer, at least IMO. So I guess I'm out of luck with my other questions. "what is your life purpose?"...mmm....am I the only one who can't answer that? I really wish I knew what it was, then I would probably be on the right track.


Quote:
Entertainment sells period! Edit: that being said, you can sell your musical services; it's not all about being an act. Sure you can sell your act, but your services are just as valuable and can create a nice and comfortable income.
Very True!
---

Quote:
Disclaimer: I answered to "being serious about my music" but am still amateur as I am still working on my plan at the moment (as well as my craft). I have decided to pursue music and the arts because it supports my life purpose, the part where I create works that can help bring people to enjoyment/relief, strengthen communities with positive viewpoints, etc. This is not just through music but through other creative means, such as film ... not sure if that's helping
I'm glad that you have found your life purpose, that is indeed, a big accomplishment. Some of us will never know what that is, some find it when is too late, and some die without ever knowing. I'm really hoping that my kids will find it and pursue it.

Thanks!

---

Quote:
I hope things work out for your daughter as a lack of preparation for the world of music can lead to lots of heartache when presented with new cultures and ways of life. She will succeed so long as the right decisions are made, and she is showing good character already by declaring her intentions to achieve her music career through studying.

However I think it is a danger to refuse to understand more of how the world works, not least the fields surrounding her intended career. If she only knows how to tune guitars she will have no say in the wood used, so if she were to try to sell a brand of guitars she could make some terrible mistakes. Likewise it is good to have a grasp of other fields, such as business, economics, sociology ... well there are lots of fields involved in music. And not everything has to be about music; it's great to be well rounded.

Where I worked our MD had already sold millions of music CD's is a Bafta judge and heads a few charities. The company founders tried it in the music business too with a band, and just about half of the office had serious musical skills, be it engineering, mixing, DJ'ing or music ... and their main profession was software development. You don't have to be a one trick wonder/dog I don't call it plan B, I call it support of plan A - my life purpose </essay>
One of the best advices I ever heard!

Thank you, The Place.
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