Humble and Fierce - Life as an Independent Musician

Life as an independent musician can be challenging to the say the least. It can be super rewarding - you can be the life of a party and raise spirits to the roof, or you can be left alone and broke struggling to pay your bills. It's a life of extremes and requires a delicate balance. You've got to give your heart and soul, be vulnerable and relatable, you've also got to be strong, courageous and confident. Those combinations are not for the faint of heart, but you must still allow your heart to be faint and glow humbly yet fiercely in the dark.

The other side of being an artist includes being a jack of all trades and hopefully a master of some. Myself, I've had to log 10,000+ hours to become a professional guitar player. Along the way I've also been logging hours as a vocalist, piano player / keyboardist, drummer, and percussionist. That's just the music side of things. I've also had to learn how to become a sound engineer and build my own studio to record myself at a professional calibre, book gigs, develop relationships and be a good project manager and band leader. And in the past two years I've also become a graphic artist, video director / producer / editor, and marketing man to compete with big label artists with entire teams and million dollar budgets. It's quite the juggling act doing all this and staying connected with the artist at heart - just being the kid who loves to play music for music's sake. 

On top of that, artists, because we love to do what we do, we often have difficulty being paid properly for our work. Most professionals and experienced trades people bill at an hourly rate of $60 to $120 per hour. You'll be hard pressed as an artist to earn that kind of cash. Yes there are higher paying gigs here and there but most artists need a second job to pay the bills, even Juno winning, perpetually touring musicians. Society has a hard time paying artists the same way they do other professions and trades. But can you imagine a world without the arts, without music? It would be a bleak world indeed. It would suck.

So long story short, support independent artists that move you. There is much more going on behind the scenes in those snap-shots of time than you might believe. It's a culmination of countless hours, love, loneliness, heartache and hard work. We need your support and you need ours. Empower us to keep transforming the highs and lows of life into works of art to share and inspire.

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