How feasible is it to become a rock musician in this day and age? - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 10:45 PM Thread Starter
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How feasible is it to become a rock musician in this day and age?


Hi. This question might come off as a bit naive.

But ever since I was a kid, I've wanted to be a rock musician. I would watch all these documentaries of bands such as Megadeth and Pink Floyd, and they would talk about how they dropped out of school and performed out at venues and quickly signed their bands up to record labels and started their careers. They make it sound so easy. Of course a lot of them say that it involves a lot of hard work.

Anyways, I was wondering how feasible it is to become a rock musician today? I know that the music scene is very different from what it was like in the 70's and 80's, and rock is less popular.

But do you think there's any chance at all of becoming a rock musician today (band or solo musician)? Obviously I'm not going to drop out of school. I just finished university and I'm 22 years old. But I was wondering if I should pursue my dreams or is it just impossible to become a rockstar in this era?
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post #2 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 10:59 PM
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From what I've read, it's a lot more difficult today. It's more competitive. Bands don't make much from their recordings since music is available for free on the internet. Bands make their money from performing live. For that reason, solo acts don't have much of a chance.

If you love to play, get into a band as a hobby. If your band catches on, maybe then pursue it full time.

Do you play, sing, and write music?
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post #3 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 12:42 AM
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I guess your best bet would be to learn an instrument and audition to join a preexisting band who are looking for a new member because someone dropped out.

If you want to go solo it will be even harder . If you're working from online to start with you have to build up a following yourself, you need to do something interesting that others haven't done because the internet means there's tons of everything always available and there are loads of rock musicians. You also need to think a lot about image to market yourself.

If you like music then you should go for it because you'll be doing it to create and experiment with music, but if you just want to be a rockstar ehhhhhh.

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post #4 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 02:02 AM
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I think nowadays, new rock musicians are called experimental alternative musicians. Something you listen to and you ask yourself "why is this playing in a rock station?" Only to see them winning Grammys year after year in the Rock/Alternative category, because if you're not hip hop or pop genre, mainstream listeners have no idea what genre to put you in.

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post #5 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 02:04 AM
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It seems really really difficult nowadays. Even bigger bands don't really make money on their music and just make it by after tours and stuff

Do you play instruments now or are you thinking of starting now?

Like dead said (rhyme), going for fame and stuff wont work unless you're insanely lucky. if you want to make music, the unlikelyhood of fame shouldnt stop that

None of the stories i've heard have sounded easy. They all worked very hard AND got lucky. Pretty sure any successful person will say there was an element of luck because you dont make it there without help from other people and circumstances
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post #6 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 02:47 AM
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Better hurry up and find someone to teach you a instrament before they all die out . Lol

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post #7 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Maslow View Post
From what I've read, it's a lot more difficult today. It's more competitive. Bands don't make much from their recordings since music is available for free on the internet. Bands make their money from performing live. For that reason, solo acts don't have much of a chance.

If you love to play, get into a band as a hobby. If your band catches on, maybe then pursue it full time.

Do you play, sing, and write music?
Yeah piracy has spoilt the music industry like that, it's a shame.

I'd love to get into a band, but because of my SA it is a little hard. I have collaborated with a few musicians in the past before, but they were not as committed to the music as I was and the band just never stayed together.

I play guitar and I write guitar riffs, choruses and solos. Off late I've just been writing songs and uploading them on Soundcloud..but I'm not sure how far that is going to take me in regard to having a career in music.
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post #8 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Blue Dino View Post
I think nowadays, new rock musicians are called experimental alternative musicians. Something you listen to and you ask yourself "why is this playing in a rock station?" Only to see them winning Grammys year after year in the Rock/Alternative category, because if you're not hip hop or pop genre, mainstream listeners have no idea what genre to put you in.
Wow I have never heard of that genre before :P I've heard a lot of songs nowadays that don't typically sound like your classic rock songs, but they're still technically rock I guess. so I guess they put them in that genre.
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post #9 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:39 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShadowOne View Post
It seems really really difficult nowadays. Even bigger bands don't really make money on their music and just make it by after tours and stuff

Do you play instruments now or are you thinking of starting now?

Like dead said (rhyme), going for fame and stuff wont work unless you're insanely lucky. if you want to make music, the unlikelyhood of fame shouldnt stop that

None of the stories i've heard have sounded easy. They all worked very hard AND got lucky. Pretty sure any successful person will say there was an element of luck because you dont make it there without help from other people and circumstances
I play guitar.

However I don't really think that luck is the main factor :P I think the main factor is to do something great that hasn't been done before, like a new style of music or a very unique sound. And if that person is lucky enough to be heard by the right people, then they might get the right opportunities.
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post #10 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 01:48 PM
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So its not luck but luck
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post #11 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 02:06 PM
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If you're talented enough to write good music you can make it.

The biggest problem is that record labels, much like film studios tend to all copy each other and go with whatever they think is selling at the time. Most of them don't think traditional rock music sells anymore, despite the fact that all the large rock bands from the 80's\90's still make a ton of money touring.

I think you need a lot of luck to make it. There's a ton of great guitarists, musicians but unless you perform solo it's about a 'group' of people being the right fit for each other. It's not even just a case of getting 4\5 great musicians together and you'll be good enough, you need the chemistry to be there, the way you play needs to compliment each others.

One thing I would say is that if you're in a band that has a lot of potential you'll feel it when you play.

You really just need to try finding a band that you're happy with. When you find that band, if it feels right, then go for it.

I play guitar, bass and can play drums a bit too. If you need any advice just ask.
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post #12 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by DukeDuck View Post
I'd love to get into a band, but because of my SA it is a little hard.
Same here. I've played in song circles and a few open mics, but to play in front of a bunch of rowdy drunks would be too much for me. Probably. It would be fund to try, though.
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post #13 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 03:54 PM
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You'll have to get good at social media, and accept that you'll need to have a real job in addition to playing music for at least several years.
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post #14 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 04:02 PM Thread Starter
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So its not luck but luck
Lol kind of. What I meant to say was that even if a person has all the luck in the world, they're still not going to make it if they're not making anything fresh.
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post #15 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dark Skies View Post
If you're talented enough to write good music you can make it.

The biggest problem is that record labels, much like film studios tend to all copy each other and go with whatever they think is selling at the time. Most of them don't think traditional rock music sells anymore, despite the fact that all the large rock bands from the 80's\90's still make a ton of money touring.

I think you need a lot of luck to make it. There's a ton of great guitarists, musicians but unless you perform solo it's about a 'group' of people being the right fit for each other. It's not even just a case of getting 4\5 great musicians together and you'll be good enough, you need the chemistry to be there, the way you play needs to compliment each others.

One thing I would say is that if you're in a band that has a lot of potential you'll feel it when you play.

You really just need to try finding a band that you're happy with. When you find that band, if it feels right, then go for it.

I play guitar, bass and can play drums a bit too. If you need any advice just ask.
Thanks for your reply.

I know man. The chemistry is super important. I so wish I didn't have social anxiety so that I can meet a lot of people and find musicians I get along with well.

I think since record labels rely on what the majority of the people want and listen to, it's up to people like us to make rock popular again. Even simple things like performing at a charity concert or just busking could go a long way in influencing the general public's taste. And if people start to know what rock is, then record labels might start promoting rock musicians.
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post #16 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 04:18 PM
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alright, let's do it mr.duck. I have the same desire.
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post #17 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 04:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DukeDuck View Post
Yeah piracy has spoilt the music industry like that, it's a shame.

I'd love to get into a band, but because of my SA it is a little hard. I have collaborated with a few musicians in the past before, but they were not as committed to the music as I was and the band just never stayed together.

I play guitar and I write guitar riffs, choruses and solos. Off late I've just been writing songs and uploading them on Soundcloud..but I'm not sure how far that is going to take me in regard to having a career in music.
If you get a decent following online you could use some crowdfunding platform to get money to fund touring. I mean that's what most of the indie musicians I follow do, how much money they get also determines how many cities/countries they visit.

Of course if you get noticed and offered a record contract you wouldn't have to consider that but then you have less control.

The wretched world we’re living in at present was not an unlucky war of fate; it was an economic and political decision made without consulting the enormous human population that it would most drastically affect. If we would have it otherwise, if we’d prefer a future that we can call home, then we must stop supporting — even passively — this ravenous, insatiable conservative agenda before it devours us with our kids as a dessert. - Alan Moore

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post #18 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-23-2016, 02:10 PM Thread Starter
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If you get a decent following online you could use some crowdfunding platform to get money to fund touring. I mean that's what most of the indie musicians I follow do, how much money they get also determines how many cities/countries they visit.

Of course if you get noticed and offered a record contract you wouldn't have to consider that but then you have less control.
Interesting, I didn't know indie musicians do that. That's pretty cool!
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post #19 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-23-2016, 03:35 PM
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I'd say it depends if you're thinking you want to be a "rockstar" or if you want to be a working musician because the latter is way more achievable than the former.

If you want to be a working musician you can form a band and start working your way into the local gigging circuit while maybe teaching on the side, doing studio sessions recording with other acts, and even filling in when needed for some of the bands you tend to play with regularly. I'm not sure how it works stateside but here in Canada as you do those things and can prove you're trying to make a living as a musician there are various grants you can apply for to help with funds for new gear or to your or for studio time. That's the practical route and then with hard work and some luck you write a hit that does well on the radio and gets you signed to a label that can really boost your profile.

The key these days is gigging regularly again though. There was a spell when you could write hit records without performing as much and make most of your money from royalties but in the digital age where people don't pay for half the music they collect gigging is your bread and butter
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post #20 of 27 (permalink) Old 09-23-2016, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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I'd say it depends if you're thinking you want to be a "rockstar" or if you want to be a working musician because the latter is way more achievable than the former.

If you want to be a working musician you can form a band and start working your way into the local gigging circuit while maybe teaching on the side, doing studio sessions recording with other acts, and even filling in when needed for some of the bands you tend to play with regularly. I'm not sure how it works stateside but here in Canada as you do those things and can prove you're trying to make a living as a musician there are various grants you can apply for to help with funds for new gear or to your or for studio time. That's the practical route and then with hard work and some luck you write a hit that does well on the radio and gets you signed to a label that can really boost your profile.

The key these days is gigging regularly again though. There was a spell when you could write hit records without performing as much and make most of your money from royalties but in the digital age where people don't pay for half the music they collect gigging is your bread and butter
Wow its great that there are grants out there for musicians.

It would be much easier if we knew where exactly these agents are that sign artists up to record labels. They seem to be these mysterious anonymous secret agents that just lurk here and there and don't really give away their position :P I wish there was some kind of a gathering or forum where you can upload your tracks and have them reviewed by labels. (But yeah, I get why that isn't there because there are so many musicians out there that the number of tracks they'll receive would overwhelm there)

As for your first question: I would love to be a '' rockstar ''. Recording my own songs, publishing them, touring (hopefully on an international level)...A lot like John Mayer and Jack Johnson (I know it seems like a long shot to get up to the level where those two are, but one can dream right )
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