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Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by fivesevenoh, Oct 29, 2003.
what type of jobs can you get as a professional musician?
Teacher (lessons or classes, private or public), studio player, weddings, parties, clubs, festivals, songwriter (can you write the next "Hit Me Baby One More Time?"), salesperson, luthier, piano tuner, transcriber for publishing company, author of instructional or historical literature, Broadway musician, circus musician, cruise ship musician, symphony musician, tour sideman (could you play behind the Dixie Chicks every night for 6 months?), producer, rock star, pop diva.
Those are a few that come to mind.
Let's go to Misc.
The market conditions have changed so much since I was in my 20's and lucked-out doing all originals and going on tours with my band, The Foes.
Nowadays, it's sick - the marketing makes the music - rather than the way it should be - vice versa.
My advice is to get all the formal training you can. If you have to play bass for a Hyundai ad (as I have), do it. You do what you have to do. Even Jeff Berlin auditioned for Cher.
Playing bass is a joy but there are many times when you're looking at the specials in the grocery store's meat dept.
A solid study at a good music school is where it's at these days, now that electric bass is so commonplace.
I've said it so many times, but service bands are a GREAT way to make a living.
Steady pay, good gear, health, dental and retirement benefits. But don't come faking it, or reading TAB, cuz you ain't gonna get the gig.
There are certain basic "rules" for being a pro musician. By the time you've aquired the necessary ingredients, you wont have to ask this question, you will know.
1; A very good command of sight-reading, and I dont mean that TAB b.s. Also a knowledge of the Nashville system would'nt hurt.
2; A quality "vintage" style bass, such as a Fender P, a quality "modern" 5 string, a quality fretless, and possibly an electric or acoustic upright, also an acoustic bass guitar. This would be minimum for a pro. Many, like Will Lee or Dave Pomeroy will have 10 or more basses to call on.
3; A quality studio rack containing tuner, compressor, and other bits and bobs, plus a live stage rig able to handle any situation.
4; The ability to compose or improvise bass parts instantaneously.
By the time you've aquired all of the above, you'll be on the way. Then it's a matter of networking, making yourself known to all and sundry, chasing every lead you can, maybe moving to a large city where the opportunities are greater, gaining experience playing at jams and with bands, playing ALL styles,
you could luck in with a band that becomes succesful, even though you can only play on two strings and dont know the names of the notes on your bass. Dont laugh, it's happened! Just dont wait for it to happen, you've got more chance of being struck by lightning.
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