I want to start out by thanking the LGM owner and contributors. I do not post very often, however I have been apart of LGM since about 2004 and it has been a tremendous blessing to me. The purpose of this post is to educate those who may be interested in pursuing a career in music by using examples from my own personal experiences. I am going to be as honest as possible so that it may be helpful to those that are looking to make the jump. Hopefully I don't come across as a jerk or being arrogant.
I do not have a set itinerary so this post
may will come across as random thoughts. By the way, I am still learning and do not know everything.
A little bit about myself.
I have been making a living "exclusively" from music for about 4 years now. I have a mortgage, two car payments, and my kids are in private school. In addition, I'm the breadwinner in my home. Most of the people I know that make a living from music seem to be struggling and living paycheck to paycheck. Most of those people have similar characteristics. They are recording original music trying to make it big and they "work for" a school of music. Nothing wrong with the previous sentence. However, I have responsibilities to my family's immediate well-being.
I think that it is important to have multiple sources of income. Also, I think it is important to have multiple skill sets. Although I do several things and am currently working on several projects, I will only list those things that actually bring in compensation "Regularly".
Church #1: play piano only
Church #2: Music director
Teach lessons: In home lessons; Lease space for lessons in studio
Children's band: play drums and piano to entertain kids 5 and under (done during the day)
Gigs: solo and with various bands. Im not a singer so all of my solo gigs are instrumental.
Please note: I am not the best musician. Im probably not even top 25 on LGM. Whenever I go to a church musical, Im the least skilled musician. Now I that I think about it, I may be one of the few musicians that can read in certain environments. Im just a regular guy.
Some things that are very important:
1. Dont be a jerk. I just got a gig simply because I get along with people.
2. Learn songs. If you know a lot of songs, you will make yourself very marketable.
3. Answer emails and texts promptly
4. Know how to read a chord chart. (band gigs)
5. Know how to play by ear (church)
6. Be on time. If you are on time you are late. Period.
7. Be prepared.
Other things: Read and pray everyday; Listen to the word everyday; Eat right; Workout; oh yeah, dont be a jerk