First of all, if you aren’t bothered about making money, or getting people you don’t know to listen to your music, then you can disregard this article.
But if you’re still reading, then I assume you want to have some success in getting others to give you love/money/attention. The very moment you decide that you are no longer making music for your own listening sake, there is one important thing you need to realise.
It is no longer all about you.
I see people say things like “why do I have to do so much stuff that isn’t music, just to do music” and my response is…You don’t!
But if you want the attention of others, or you want transactions between you and others that benefit you, you have to make it about them, at least at first.
This doesn’t mean compromise on your art, it means that you have to figure out who and where your audience is and create content of value to them in the medium in which they consume.
I work with artists, they ask me how to get people to listen, I tell them how, and they come back with “I don’t want to do that, though”.
My response is “cool, then don’t”
They know what I mean that when I say that. I mean it’s up to them what they do or don’t do, but the market won’t bend to their preference. It has to be the other way around.
Once upon a time, I decided to create my own music company. That’s what I want to do. But in order to make that successful, I have to cater to my audience/clients, and sometimes that involves doing stuff that isn’t normal or natural to me, but I do it because I am committed to making it work.
As an artist, you are a business, whether you like to think of it that way or not. And the moment you realise that the moment you realise you are in the business of serving others.
Hope this finds you well.
Christopher Carvalho runs Unlock Your Sound helping up-and-coming indie artists create and strategically release their music.