Are you ready for the spotlight? If want to become a recording artist, stage performer, or professional musician, you have your work cut out for you: Hopeful dreamers saturate the music industry. While passion, determination, and talent go a long way in helping you achieve your aspirations, sometimes even an abundance of those things just isn’t enough. While some rely on winning music grants, a music mentor can be that extra boost you need to break into the music industry and turn your hobby into a career.
The Benefits of Having a Music Mentor
The main reason why mentor/mentee relationships prove so helpful is because you get to learn from another person’s real-life experiences. An ideal mentor has spent years in the music industry and probably made plenty of mistakes along the way – they’ve probably made lots of good decisions too. Your music mentor can use those experiences to guide you on your musical journey.
A music mentor also helps you become a better musician by identifying skills and weaknesses that you or those with untrained ears might not notice. Whether it’s how you write songs, your technical abilities, your equipment, or your performance style, an experienced musician can really hone in on those little details that make or break you as a musician.
Music mentors often have experience promoting and marketing music, and they can also guide you in developing your image. After all, as a musician, you want to develop your own unique aesthetic, from your album artwork to your stage clothing. It’s also common for music mentors to have connections in the industry, which often proves helpful when it comes to booking gigs and studio time or connecting with record labels.
Finally, a music mentor motivates you to keep going. The music industry and rejections go hand-in-hand, and this can discourage you from moving forward. Having a mentor helps you overcome obstacles you might not handle well on your own and pushes you even when things get tough.
How to Find a Music Mentor
Connecting with your local music scene often proves the best way to find a musician to mentor you. To make this happen, learn about local musicians and bands, and go see local and national music artists live whenever possible. Follow your favorites on social-media platforms, and interact with other fans on those pages. Go to music conferences, workshops, and related events and talk to people — let them know you’re on the hunt for a mentor.
Spend time learning about the music industry by reading online music blogs and related sites so you can make an informed decision. If you find someone you think might make an ideal fit, reach out to them. Try to talk to them at a concert, or send an email or social-media private message. Show them your music, explain exactly what you hope to achieve, and tell them how you think they can help. When reaching out, be polite, respectful, and friendly. Don’t feel bad if the musician doesn’t respond or rejects you. Not everyone is ready for or has the time for a mentor/mentee relationship.
Your Role as Mentee
Once you find someone willing to mentor you, it’s important that you do your part to keep the relationship working. If the mentor isn’t paid for their time, you’re relying on their kindness. Be aware of the value of their time, and do your best to accommodate them whenever possible. Always be respectful, and keep an open mind. If you’re not willing to learn, your mentor can’t teach you anything. If your mentor tells you to rehearse something and have it ready for the next meeting, for example, do it. Work hard, be pleasant, and remain teachable, and you may find your mentor can help you achieve new heights in your music career.
Working hard and making the most of your natural talents and skill sets can make the difference between a successful musical career and the opposite. With that in mind, finding the right music mentor can keep you on track, no matter your personal career goals. Tracking your expenses and income while you break into the music business is simple when you use QuickBooks Self-Employed. This app helps freelancers, contractors, and sole proprietors manage their businesses on the go. Download the app today to help you keep a handle on your earnings.