November 17, 2008
7 reasons to go Indie!
This applies to all those thinking of becoming freelance or going alone on their music career. The word ‘Indie’ used to be applied to just record labels, often run by musicians in their spare time, but any reader of Bob Baker will know that ‘Indie’ should be a frame of mind and you can apply it to everything that you do.
1) Do what you love, and you’ll never work another day again.
Or something like that, I’m sure someone far wiser than me has said it better. Point is, I love getting up in the morning, switching on some kind of computer, and writing / recording / organising / sharing / listening. I may say that I have many jobs, as they all supplement my income, but in another way, I never feel like I’m actually working. I enjoy it, therefore it can’t be work, can it?!?
2) Doing what you love will earn you MORE money.
It’s often thought that to do what you love, you will have to give up your well-paid ‘normal’ job and make less money… Wrong! If you do what you love, then your passion shows through, and people in the music industry love to see that. Your passion makes you driven and motivated. Everyone wants to work with people like that, right? Motivation and determination make you succeed. It’s not always immediate, but if you stick to your guns... Kerrrchinggg! (I constantly learn from Gary Vaynerchuk in this department.)
3) Job security.
No, I’m serious. I feel more secure having my job, career, and income under my control as opposed to having all my eggs in someone else’s basket. Someone on a board who doesn’t know me. Somebody who is being told to cutback wherever they can because of an ‘economic downturn’. Think about it.
4) “My job allows me to be as creative as possible”.
Imagine being able to say that everyday. It’s one heck of a feeling.
5) You own everything that you create.
I’m not just talking about the dread of another label owning your songs, or another mag owning your articles. There was a recent post on the topic of ‘Who owns your friends?’, pointing out a case where an employee had created a strong network of acquaintances through online social networking. He had done this as a representative of the company he was working for, and upon leaving, thought he could take this with him. A Judge thought otherwise; as this was done on company time, and he was effectively paid to do so be the company, the company basically owned his network of peers. Ouch.
6) You can create your own luck.
As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I don’t believe that getting a lucky ‘break’ happens any more (if ever). You create your own luck. Sitting at your workplace waiting for a magazine to call you and ask about your band will not happen. You have to spend your time creating and fine-tuning your press kit and media relations. Again, Bob Baker has some very wise words on this.
7) Become part of the FUTURE.
By finding what you want, and acting now, you will create a great opportunity for yourself. The music industry is going crazy, as is social media and guerilla marketing. It’s an ideal time to get stuck in and make yourself part of the industry. The days of being just a consumer are over. People create, share, remix, re-hash and become a lot more involved than the music marketing strategies of old.
This may be a bit of a cross-over between freelancing ideas and ideas that you could still do in your spare time, but I believe they all come with an ‘Indie’ frame of mind. It’s certainly a determined and passionate frame of mind, and it’s definitely at the heart of what I do. Either way, I want these tips to instigate and encourage you in your music career. Feel free to comment if they do or don’t or if you want to add your own.