Tuesday, November 8, 2011
I'm Still Confused
I am a bit irritated by by an ever pervasive attitude among musicians that continues to allow us to be pimped and exploited at every turn. Everyone from club owners to managers has us jumping through hoops for them but none of them are really showing us any level of respect. I agree that money should not be our main focus but we have to modify our understanding of that concept. When we as artists say this we don't mean that we don't want to make money. What we mean is that we have faith that if we stay focused on creating great art then the money will come but most people take our artistic dedication as a weakness and use against us. I'm still confused as to how club owners, so called managers and promoters can come to us to play shows without offering an acceptable wage. I can't tell you how many calls I get from guys about playing a club but they will say that we have to start out for three or four hundred dollars and we can use this to build ourselves up. Now let's keep in mind that most of these guys have toured around the world with some of the biggest artists of our time and they actually entertain this mess. I even had one guy give me the don't focus on the money speech. Man I told him that in this situation that was BS. We have spent our lives perfecting our craft and honing our skills. If we are good enough to make thousands of dollars touring with these great artists and producing records, why should we have to allow some second rate club owner or so called manager to insult us. It seems that these people place no value on experience and ability. That doesn't happen in any other profession. In any other field, you are rewarded and respected for your experience and expertise. It's time that we stop allowing ourselves to be exploited by these people. I can't tell you how many times a club owner has come up to me and said that he had never seen anything like my show our how happy he was to have us there and he wants us back but when you start talking about the money he begins to make excuses and say just work with me. Well I did work with him. I came to his place and put on a great show that in turn allowed him to make more money. He was satisfied enough to ask us back with the promise of more money but the money never really increases. I know this is nothing new in the music industry. The point I'm trying to make is that we as musicians have to change our thought process. We are not beholding to these people. They need us more than we need them. We have to be willing to work smart enough to develop our own brand and fan base. Once we do that, we can create our own value and if they don't want to pay us then we will play somewhere else. Even if it means sponsoring our own shows. We deserve to be wealthy and live comfortably too. No more starving artist BS. Now let's go about changing this perception. Enjoy the journey.
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