You face 5 obstacles when you start out your career as an independent musician or producer.
Your main enemies are...
Foe 1 - The Absence of a Vision...
You want to be clear about which type of life you want to create as an independent musician and producer.
Do you want a life where you spend most of your time on a dayjob, with your music production pushed back to the status of a part-time hobby? Do you want to earn all the money you need by doing music full time?
It's an important question to ask yourself...
"What type of music-business-life do I want to create?"
Create a clear picture of what you want to do as an independent musician or producer. The more clear your vision, the easier it will be to stay on track when times get tough.
Foe 2 - The Presence of Doubt
Your doubts will come back to haunt you again and again as you progress with your music career.
How you deal with your doubts will determine the pace of your progress.
You may have doubt in your talents. You may think you have no ability to make your own music or that your music will not be appreciated.
You may hear a new track in your genre and be so blown out of the water by the quality you start to feel hopeless because of your own lack of progress.
The list goes on.
The main thing to remember when in doubt is that you would not have an urge to do something without the ability to make it happen.
The urge you feel to make and share your music is the energy which you can transform into music and income through focus, discipline and practice.
The best thing to overcome doubt is to do one thing straight away which brings you closer to your vision. Even one small step in the right direction gets you started, that's usually all we need.
Foe 3 - Lack of Skills and Experience
You'll find listed below just some of the skills you must have as an independent musician and producer (or be willing to pay for)...
Music production and performance skills, studio skills, business skills, marketing/promotion skills and administrative skills.
You can see there is much to learn as an independent artist and producer.
The way to overcome this obstacle is to adopt an attitude of the perpetual learner.
You know there is a learning curve involved, so be patient with yourself and do little bits at a time, constantly.
Before you know it you will have both the skill and experience you need to make your own music and get it heard.
Foe 4 - The Reality of the Job
You work a full time or part time job just to have money to live with. Your life overheads need to be paid. So you do it to get by.
Do you love your job? Well, maybe you do if it's a very new job or you are part of a small minority who has a job you actually love.
No matter how you feel about your job, the reality is this...
A full-time job takes most of your waking time and your best energy, leaving you with very little left to invest in to your career as an independent musician and producer.
You may get money and even be able to build your studio, still, your music will always have to fit in around your job.
You can make your own music, and make it well, as long as you have the time and energy it takes to produce music.
The way to overcome this obstacle is to create automated income sources using your passion or expertise in order to replace your job income.
My suggestion is to create stable business income which requires less-and-less of your time to maintain as you go along. You then feed your money, time and energy into your music production, performance and promotion activities.
Foe 5 - The Lack of Support
Friends and family play a vital role as they need to understand the demands music production makes on the true artist.
They may want your attention, and to balance music production and family life can become quite a tricky thing to do.
You will be well off advising people close to you how much you want to make music and explain to them the amount of time this requires from you.
Make time for friends and family though because these are the people who will be there when you need help, so it's not wise to neglect them.
Apart from family and friends you also need the Support of fellow artists and producers for inspiration, advice and most importantly, critique of your works.
Your network will also be the first people to Support your work when you release it, so treat them well!
You can also join professional organizations and bodies to further expand your network and support group. You can avoid the lack of Support by maintaining sincere relationships with the people around you.
Be mindful of the above 5 Foes and your career as an independent musician and producer will be much smoother.