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Risks

I'd really like to be in a successful band. Who wouldn't be? But if you want to have growth there are risks and it seems you have to cut back on other parts of life if you want to try. Does anyone here have experience with this? Is it worth the risks, or are there ways to be heard without taking too many risks?
Leiria
Posts: 330
Quote:
Is it worth the risks
“If you have to ask…”
Guinny
Posts: 114
If playing music is what you want to do, then there is no risk. Chances are you will never be famous, so you better love what you do.
johnny [staff]
Posts: 899
whenever you want to be really good at something you need to cut back on something else. You need to commit to it. There aren't enough hours in the day to do everything. the best advice i can give you is to live in an environment and surround yourself with people where you will be encouraged to be in a band, so you won't feel guilty about the time spent practicing and not doing other stuff.
IamMark
Posts: 863
What do you mean when you say “successful band”?

Do you mean in a band that provides enough income for you to focus solely on the band?

Or do you mean in a band where you're able to play gigs with large audiences as a second source of income/in your “off hours”?

Or in some cases, a successful band could mean a band where the members are able to stay together and not punch each other in the throat frequently.
Quote:
What do you mean when you say “successful band”?Do you mean in a band that provides enough income for you to focus solely on the band?Or do you mean in a band where you're able to play gigs with large audiences as a second source of income/in your “off hours”?Or in some cases, a successful band could mean a band where the members are able to stay together and not punch each other in the throat frequently.
When I say successful band I'm aiming to have minor success, still working a job, but having the ability to take off for a month or so to focus on the band.
LoudLon [moderator]
Posts: 1489
You're not going to find a regular job that's forgiving enough to allow you to take off for a month or two at a time – unless you're, say, a teacher and get summers off with a stipend, or a seasonal worker, in which case you're going to have to stretch every dollar on your off-seasons in case you're unable to find a regular paying band gig.

So either put all your effort into a band and be willing to scrape by until you find success, or get yourself a steady, full-time job and hope you can be content with playing the occasional weekend bar gig, wedding or pool party.

There is another option, though, and that's as a session player. Those guys make good money and normally don't have a problem getting hired on a regular basis. But you'd better be sure you've mastered your instrument. You really need to know your shit and be able to play a wide range of styles and genres.
Do you think that the internet takes some of the risks away, making it possible to start out online in your spare time, and if an audience and an opportunity is there sinking more time into it when you already have followers.
IamMark
Posts: 863
For every 100 followers you have on Social Media, you can expect 1 to 2 to show up to your shows.

Assuming you're targeting a local following on your social media.
Quote:
For every 100 followers you have on Social Media, you can expect 1 to 2 to show up to your shows.Assuming you're targeting a local following on your social media.
I've heard that before, and I could expect that, but the internet allows for non locals to hear local bands, making it more accessible.
LoudLon [moderator]
Posts: 1489
The internet's a pale comparison to a real, live, local fan-base. If you're really set on getting your stuff out there and heard, do it the old fashioned way – make a demo CD, make a bunch of copies of it and start spreading it around to friends and at bars or clubs and non-franchise music and instrument shops (most mom-and-pop shops are happy to help out a budding musician/band). If people dig your stuff they'll spread its praise via word of mouth and before long, you'll have yourself a fan-base.

And play every chance you get, be it an aforementioned pool party, bar or wedding gig, or open mic night – whatever opportunity presents itself. In my first band, we would actually open the doors and windows during our practice sessions so neighbors could hear us (none of them complained, surprisingly) and folks who liked what we were doing could just walk in, cop a squat and watch us jam. Once you get a bit of a following, start charging for those demo CDs and sell them at every gig you play.

That's how you build a dedicated fan-base and, by extension, a demand for your stuff.

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