Look Inside and Amplify

Posted: July 13, 2011 in Uncategorized

With such a wealth of information out there on the internet on how to promote and market your band it is often so easy to get lost in other people’s thoughts and opinions. Someone says your band should gig 4 times a week and some other expert says you should just gig once a month. Some people say you are not a true or real musician unless you tour and tweet about your tour and others have other ideas…The amount of advice out there is conflicting, bewildering and some times even depressing.

Every now and then it gets to me, because when “expert” advice is saying something that I am lacking in my band or the promotional aspect of it, I feel that weakness. And it happened to me last week…I was down for a bit as somehow I thought my band wasn’t a *real* band as we haven’t been gigging loads or touring outside London.

Luckily, a friend who I have met through this group is a session musician and has years of experience gave me some great honest advice and it really spoke out to me and struck me.

And so this is the whole point of this blog post 🙂

No one can ever really understand you, no one knows your thoughts fully, and in many ways no one really cares either. But and this is a big but, it’s ok as we are all alone at the end of the day yet connected to each other through our actions. And what that means is that you have to look inside yourself, see what makes you a musician who is excited about the stuff you do. What makes you unique and you you? And it doesn’t really matter that you are not living up to someone else’s standard of success…as long as you enjoy what you do that’s what really matters anyway, screw what the “expert” thinks! If you well and truly enjoy what you do others might find meaning in that and join you in whatever music you do. Feelings are infections 🙂 and whatever you do is very very *real* already.

And maybe you can find out what does in fact make you tick and make you so passionate about music and promoting your music/band etc., Once you find that out, amplify it..do more of it, be an extreme version of yourself as Derek Sivers puts it so well. If you are a geeky rocker, go for the Weezer look, if you are dark and heavy, go the metal way like Marilyn Manson…all these people looked inside themselves and then expressed their persona outwards. And how to find that out in the first place? You can go to more open mic nights, or post videos on to YouTube, just play to friends in your lounge and of course play loads yourself to enjoy the feelings music gives you…just by doing that you will get closer to knowing what makes you tick.

I know this post is a bit wishy-washy and philosophical but what I am really trying to say is that whatever you are doing and wherever you have got so far is in itself an achievement and as tempting as it is, don’t compare yourself to others who are more “successful”. Just compare yourself to an older version of yourself who wasn’t even at the place where you are now. See how far you’ve gotten so far and then just build up, slowly but surely. That’s what the best artists have done anyway, they’ve all overcome their personal struggles within themselves first and then with the rest of the world. And indeed when the personal struggles are articulated and expressed in the form of music we recognise and connect to it.

In the words of The Police and their Message in a Bottle:

Walked out this morning, don’t believe what I saw
Hundred billion bottles washed up on the shore
Seems I’m not alone in being alone
Hundred billion castaways, looking for a home


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