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Making a living out of Music!!!

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10 Feb 2010 23:46 | Quote
Joined: 22 Sep 2009
South Africa
Karma: 8
Hi all,
Hope this topic gets a few replies because I would like to get some feedback from the guys who made it and those who didn't succeed.

Ive recently started playing live gigs about a year ago and its going so well now that I can actually quit my day job and do this fulltime and get more practice in(alot more)

Ive only been playing for 4 years and playing the style of Rodrigo y Gabriela with a djembe/bongo drummer. I do about 4 gigs a week and the people really like it and just want more, but its also very tiring to go back to my day job the next morning rather than sleeping abit late and practice more.

Do you guys think its wise to take the chance to do this fulltime and quit my day job?(would rather practice 8 hours a day than wasting my time in a office) Any warnings? Tips? Advice? Feedback ? would be much appreciated

11 Feb 2010 00:08 | Quote
Joined: 01 Oct 2008
United States
Licks: 1
Karma: 18
I'd ask them if you could come back if you weren't satisfied after leaving dude. Or have another job waiting in the wings. These days, that's just not safe unless you're signed imo.

11 Feb 2010 12:53 | Quote
Joined: 29 Apr 2009
United States
Lessons: 2
Karma: 23
do NOT quit yer day-job! not YET anyways.
I'll use me as a for instance and reason.
at 17 i was touring the country with a very well loved hardcore band called Koro, but i was on summer break from HS and was on my 3rd band(that got paid well)
in 1984 THAT particular band died at my hand, as i figure "punks dead, lets play something else" (Hence Red, etc)
after HS i moved to Austin TX to try and form a band there with a good friend while staying at Chris Gates (Big Boys, Junkyard) home.
he got sick of us.
we slept under Taco Stands, in clubs and in womens dorm-rooms for almost 6-mo's until i said screw it! and moved back here.
I worked while in some very lucrative and fun bands, but i WORKED 2 jobs (3 once) to support my 'music Habit' lol ...
I was still working in a record store (1989) when playing nice theaters to 900+ people and getting to open for the Ramones and such...
but i never COUNTED ON IT, as i liked the idea of having my own bed lol.
i took well over 20 years in "the industry" before i pulled the plug on my day jobs and made Making Music my sole source of income.
even then it was a LEAN life.
as the years went on and i spent more and more years 'in-studio' recording and mixing with some good "teachers"(owners) i felt the squeeze and started to concentrate on Mastering -- it finally paid off, and with it a job scoring for TV/film came my way, making me feel more (but not firmly) secure in my profession(s).
Then the old bands 'residuals' started comming in
Then, after 30 years under a great guitarists care, and with his death imminent, i was told "go teach"
Band still going
Mastering jobs comming in (not enough then)
'Mersh Work' (Scoring TV) starting to pay
i STILL did not feel confident that i could (now married for some time) pay my share of the bills.
finally after years and years of teaching, being a 'session-player', and gigging I felt almost "okay"
then W took office and my teaching schedule got too light
i held onto hope
turning 44 this mo
i have a FULL student roster, good gigs and enough miscellaneous & musically oriented (Mastering-etc) Jobs to feel

at looong last.

I wont step on your dreams - i'll encourage you to chase them


I WILL SAY with conviction.

its a long journey and none of the roads are paved...
but it is worth it
just be ready to sacrifice (a LOT)
and SMILE!


11 Feb 2010 13:23 | Quote
Joined: 14 Dec 2009
United States
Lessons: 2
Licks: 1
Karma: 16
Carl, that story made phip look young. lol

btw, I lived in Knoxville for 7 years when I went to UT. I like where I am now (Charlotte), but man I miss Knoxville. It is such a great place, feel like it is my home tbh. I still have some good friends that live there and are in the music scene. Russ Torbett and Dave Kennedy, they are in a band called Kelseys Woods, not sure if you have ever heard of them. Anyways, not trying to hijack this thread, just wanted to say hello.
11 Feb 2010 17:13 | Quote
Joined: 10 Feb 2008
United States
Lessons: 1
Licks: 1
Karma: 31
hah btimm!

11 Feb 2010 23:45 | Quote
Joined: 22 Sep 2009
South Africa
Karma: 8
Good story Carl! Actually very inspiring :)

Ive already decided to give my notice to my boss in the end of the month. I need this oppertunity and practice.
I see no future in my dayjob and only getting in the way of my gigs and practice. Ive saved up abit of money to pay petrol and rent for about almost a year and then use gig money to pay food and stuff.

This is a big step and im only 22, but i think its worth the shot.
12 Feb 2010 08:57 | Quote
Joined: 23 Jun 2008
Lessons: 4
Karma: 35
Can I give you a little tip that came to mind... if you quit your job and start your "journey" as Carl said, why not you try to educate yourself at meantime?, I dont know how the education system work in your country... but I think education could be good "backdoor" which time schedule is easier to manage with your gigging, practising etc... Like I think Afro forexample did.. That will help you get jobs easily if all else fails...

but I heard your playing and have confidence of your success, if you make those sacrifices. Best of luck.

14 Feb 2010 23:54 | Quote
Joined: 22 Sep 2009
South Africa
Karma: 8
Thanks Emp, appreciate the reply.
Education system probly works the same as in your country.
If you say educate yourself at the meantime do you mean futher studies like sound engineering?
16 Feb 2010 20:25 | Quote
Joined: 26 Aug 2009
United States
Karma: 2
Dude at the age of 22 and if you are without anyone else to suport (wife, kids etc,,) I say this is the time to give it a try... You are young enough to bounce if it dont work.... But if at all possable dont burn your bridges and keep in the back of your mind an alternate way to make a liveing...... I say good luck!!! I hope you do well... I enjoy your music (at least what I have heard here....
16 Feb 2010 23:25 | Quote
Joined: 22 Sep 2009
South Africa
Karma: 8
Thanks a million "TheEbida" Really appreciate the motivation
Im improving everyday and never stop practicing, and yea I dont have a family to support just yet so not much responsibilities.

Im defintly gonna give it a shot thanks!

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