1. Be nice to everyone. Relationships in the music industry revolve around respect. You need to have respect and share respect with others to find success. With every opportunity you receive, be thankful and appreciative.
2. Don’t let confidence turn into cockiness. Someone who is cocky in this industry will never find success. They might find a short-lived run of success, but when it comes to building a career, they will not succeed. Just make sure that you are confident in yourself. Say what you feel and DON’T BE AFRAID TO BE YOURSELF!
3. It is OK that bands might try and seek out economic opportunities with their music. Everyone wants to make a living. Some artists don’t care who hears their music, as long as they are making music that they love. If it happens that nobody listens to his or her music-they are still content. Other artists seek a fan base, and are willing to compromise what they are putting out to make money. Either way, as long as artists are honest, it shouldn’t be considered selling out.
4. Racism still exists in the music industry. During one of the meet-ups, Angelo Moore from Fishbone appeared as a guest mentor. He discussed his feelings and experiences with racism while in the music industry. Angelo’s experiences blew me away. It is hard for me to comprehend that he dealt with racism while in his band. I still don’t fully understand these issues, because it was way before my time of involvement in the industry, but what Angelo shared inspired me to do research and inform myself of earlier time periods and issues within the industry.
5. Once you are on the road, it is hard to get off. Many warped veterans keep coming on the tour every year, but it’s not all about the fun and games of traveling the country. Some of the people on the tour who have been in the business for a while find it hard to come off the road because touring schedules make it almost impossible to hold out a regular job in a static location. Also, once they are on the road, they are getting paid more than what they would be getting back home. Plus these veterans and experienced industry personnel are getting to travel the country, and be with some of their best friends-not to mention the music!
6. Work hard! Like with anything in life, if you really want something, it is very possible that you can achieve it if you work hard. People will notice if you put in the effort, and it will pay off in the end.
7. “Fake it until you make it” This is something that the manager of Warped Tour Lisa Brownlee shared with the group at one of the EIY meet-ups. If you find yourself with an opportunity to get involved, it is ok if you don’t know how to do the task at hand-at first. Often times the best way to learn is by doing. As an example, I started photography in January, and I have no idea how to use a digital camera. I take all of my pictures with film. I have been looking to get a photo pass to a show even though I don’t consider myself a photographer. With a little bit of confidence in my work, I was able to be recognized by a few photographers, and get feedback to help make my work better. Even if you don’t know how to do something, it’s ok. Dive right in, and…
8. ASK QUESTIONS! Don’t be shy! If you are aspiring to be more involved with the music industry, it is more than likely that you constantly surround yourself with industry people (aka all the concerts you go to!) Take advantage people who are already involved. Think about what you want to ask these people in advance, because people on tour have busy schedules and may not have a lot of time at the moment you get to ask. The EIY meet-ups were an amazing opportunity to ask questions to the Warped Vets. Kevin Lyman, Lisa Brownlee, Sarah Saturday, and all of the other mentors where extremely helpful and patient with everyone’s questions. Believe it or not, these people greatly value the opinions, effort, and questions of the kids at the meet-ups.
9. Being a girl/woman is not a setback in the music industry. If anyone won’t hire you because you are a woman, then they aren’t worth working for.
10. You can’t deny that Christopher Drew is a smart guy, no matter how much you may hate his music. Artists need to be more respected. Christopher Drew is a perfect example of that. Look at where he has gotten himself by working his ass off. All musicians should be respected no matter if you think their music is good or not.