Today I want to address a topic that I think is critical when it comes to getting started in the music business in 2022. It’s a topic that I’ve touched on and alluded to over the years in various blog posts and videos, but today I’m going to focus solely on this specific topic, because it’s a topic that is really important to understand when it comes creating a successful career in the music business.
We’ve all heard the expression “it takes money to make money”. There is a lot of truth to this statement, in the sense that it is certainly easier to make money if you already have money. It’s much easier to create a billion dollars of wealth if you start with a million dollars. I recall reading a couple years ago that if Donald Trump had simply invested the “small loan” of one million dollars his Father gave him into the stock market, instead of going into the real estate business, he would be richer today.
I haven’t checked the math to see whether that’s accurate, but it doesn’t surprise me. It’s a lot easier to create large sums of money, when you start with large sums of money. It’s much easier to go from one million dollars to a billion dollars, than from one dollar to a billion dollars.
It takes resources to accumulate wealth, and money is a powerful resource when it comes to creating more money. Money buys you time, labor, tools and resources that can greatly expedite your mission, whatever it is. Money is a powerful tool.
But, what if you don’t have a lot of money to start with? What then? Well, fortunately money is just one of many tools at your disposal when it comes to creating wealth and creating a business or career, whether it’s in the music business or another industry.
If you don’t have lots of resources, like money, to start with, you must be resourceful. After all, there are many ways to accomplish your goals and move forward apart from simply buying things that will get you closer to your goal. You must be creative and think outside the box, but if you’re in the music business, you’re probably already creative to start with. So it shouldn’t be that hard to come up with ways you can achieve your goals that don’t require you giving people your cold hard cash.
To give you some ideas on how this works, here are a few things I’ve done over the years to achieve my goals when I couldn’t afford to outright pay people upfront:
These are just a few things I’ve done over the years to get the job done without spending money upfront. There are a myriad of different way you can compensate people and money is just one way. Money in the form of currency is simply a unit of value. But most of us have other valuable resources we can use in lieu of currency that we may or may not be aware of.
Your skills are a form of currency. Your knowledge is a form of currency. Your time is a form of currency. Anything that others deem valuable is a form of currency that can be traded for resources. I think a lot of people think that if they can’t afford something because they don’t have enough money to buy it, whatever it is, be it a product or service, that they simply can’t have it. That could be the case, depending on what it is, not everyone will be willing to trade their products and services for your products and services. But you’d be surprised how many people are open to creative ways of getting paid, especially in the music business where most music industry professionals understand and can relate to the challenges we face as musicians.
The bottom line is that if your dream is to make music and make money from your music, it’s up to you to figure out how to make that happen. It will probably require thinking outside of the box a little bit. Don’t just shrug your shoulders and give up if you don’t know how to finance pursuing your dream and make things happen. Don’t be afraid to be creative and come up with resourceful ways of getting things done.
Instead of coming up with a list of excuses for why you can’t achieve your goals, brainstorm, and come up with a list of ways you could reach your goals. Be creative, resourceful and think outside the box, and you’ll be amazed at how many ways there actually are to get things done.