How to be Successful in the Music Industry

If you want to be successful in the music industry, you’re going to have to have a very strong level of commitment and a work ethic that leaves most other people in the dust. Talent, vibe or likability, and agility are other key factors that will contribute to your success. If you’re looking at working within the studio environment, as a music producer, studio owner, audio engineer, mix engineer, or otherwise, you’re going to need to know your studio etiquette and have the ability to be a problem solver who can keep a clear head even under tremendous pressure.

Have the Right Attitude, a Great Work Ethic, and the Ability to Listen.

Although you’re unlikely to find a textbook that tells you this, the music industry is very vibe and person-oriented. Hence, your demeanor and personality is a key facet of what makes people want to work with you again and again. Even if you’re someone with amazing ears and heaps of musical talent or technical audio skills, if you’ve got a bad attitude, are quick to getting hot under the collar, or even if you’ve just got an overall disposition of being better than everyone else, that can cost you dearly. Now, having a good vibe and being likable or having hangability, doesn’t mean you need to be the guy or gal who’s always self-promoting talking about me, me, me, or dropping names to cue others into your credentials and experience. Do not be a name dropper or flagrant self-promoter. In lieu of that, learn to listen and to focus on what the people you work with are saying. If what they’re telling you prompts a question, ask that question in a direct and polite manner. Demonstrating that you have the ability to actually hear what the pros are saying to you and to take direction can take you much farther than being all about you. Along with that, know the etiquette.

Be Agile.

Becoming successful in the music industry requires something people often forget to mention–agility.
Just think about the past two decades in music. From the ability to make music in the box
Within the past twenty years artists have gone from recording in the studio to being able to make music in the box. We’ve seen the advent of CD printing and being able to dup one’s own CDs and get your music out there (at least locally), to being able to stream your own music online and effectively run your own music career as a music entrepreneur. We’ve also seen a tremendous rise in the ability for newbies to jump into the business and go toe-to-toe with composers who have been in the game for years. Add to that, YouTube, Netflix, and the rise of podcasting, and it’s a whole new game. What’s to come next? Who can say but if you want to stay successful agility is one trait you need to have.

Start out Inside the Music Business.

The little-known secret of how to be successful in the music industry is to get on the inside of the music business. There are two ways to do this. The first is through trial and error based on research you do—this is likely how you are approaching your career right now. If so, good for you! There’s absolutely nothing wrong with this approach as long as you understand it will take significant time and much of your learning will be based on trial and error. Furthermore, you’re likely to run into a number of talkers who want nothing more than to feed their own egos and when it ultimately comes down to it, they won’t have the connections, the chops, or the opportunities they’re pretending to.

The second way to start out inside of the music business is to have a personal music guru who’s experienced, knowledgeable and gets nothing from pulling your chain. A real music professional who’s been working in the industry for years is going to have solid music connections, from session musicians to producers, agents, and record labels, distributors, publishers, etc. This music guru, or mentor, can help guide you and inform you on the proper channels and can help you avoid those common newbie mistakes you might otherwise make. If you’re really and truly committed to building your career and becoming successful in the music business, it makes sense to start out learning straight from a professional who can impart their life wisdom as well as show you the ropes.

If finding a professional who can mentor you and be your guru sounds like something you’d like to do, there’s one solution that can hook you up with a qualified music guru or mentor. Call us at 1-800-755-7597. Here’s what will happen when you call that number. The first person you will speak with is the operator. They are your first point of contact on your journey. You’ll be calling is RRFC Headquarters (Recording, Radio, Film Connection), located in Los Angeles, just a couple miles away from Hollywood & Vine, the Sunset Strip, and hundreds of recording studios. Nationwide, (and in Canada) we specialize in hooking up aspiring people such as yourself with professional mentors and gurus.

You’ll want to be prepared for this call, so take some time to put together a brief list of your career ambitions, goals, and even your curiosities. We have music professional mentors who are audio engineers, hip hop artists, music producers, songwriters, composers, beat makers, live DJs, music business professionals, mixers, mastering engineers, and more. If you decide to go the music mentor/guru route with the Recording Connection, be advised that there are tuition charges involved should you decide to enroll. The programs are intense and are designed around a six month schedule that will immerse you inside the music business. And just like the music biz, tt’s meritocracy based, meaning, those students who have put in the time and effort invariably achieve the results and skills that can take them far. Those students who don’t show up, and don’t put in the time and effort, invariably fail to achieve and meet their own goals. We believe, if you have a dream, do! If a seasoned, experienced music professional is setting time aside to train and teach you and even have you shadowing or assiting on real sessions, why would you ever want to waste their time by flaking?

Being successful in the music business takes dedication, sweat, the right attitude, and the right skills and knowledge. Contact us or read more on our blogs, newsletters, and research library, to see if getting in and learning right from day one is the way for you.

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