Updated: Nov 29, 2019
This past Halloween weekend I attended a 3-day music conference in London. When I first signed up for the conference, I was so excited because I know I have a lot to learn about the new music business, especially since it’s been a minute since I’ve released my own music. Ten years, in fact.
As it got closer to the event, I was feeling less enthusiastic about going because as an older person in a young person’s game, I wasn’t sure there would be any information that would apply to me. On the first day, I arrived at the conference around 4pm and when I saw the other attendees, I immediately regretted being there. I felt 100 years old in the middle of all that glorious youth and hunger. I could smell the desperation to be seen and heard by anyone perceived to be in a position of influence.
I was both terrified and invigorated by this environment, and strangely felt outside of my comfort zone. I was jealous of the youth swirling around me and wished I had the type of burning desire that I could see in the eyes of my fellow attendees. After day one, I wasn’t sure if that conference was for me and after day two of sitting through a full day of seminars, I realized that I’m at a place in my creative life where I’m going to have to figure this music business out for myself, because there are no experts sharing golden nuggets on how to navigate the music business when you’re an emerging artist, but in your 50s!
I didn’t even bother going to the third day of the seminar because at the end of day two, I knew I had received what I needed from that conference. And that came from attending the DIY Seminar on day one. That seminar had the most impact, and the panel shared information that felt applicable to where I am in my journey.
My current music is a bit experimental with one foot in today’s music and the other in yesterday’s music. The music that informs who I am as an artist has come from the 60s and 70s mostly, and the music that I’m currently drawn to is electronic based. So I’m pairing the music I love, old school Soul, Funk & Jazz with nu school electronic loops and trying to find my place in the broad spectrum of today’s music. Being a DIY artist gives me the freedom to create without the worry of fitting into any mould … to experiment with different genres and approaches without the concern of being commercial … to speak directly to my fan base in a real and honest way.
Now, almost a month later and after taking a bit of a step back to evaluate where I am and where I want to be, I’m confident to stay in the game, but I’ll have to play it by my own rules and set my own benchmark for success.