AMA: “For songwriters, do you recommend getting any job in the music industry, just to be close to the action?” – Jay

Hi Jay –

I think this is a great attitude and perspective. It’s also a great way to get your foot in the door of opportunities.

Around 2009 and 2010 I was so discouraged as a songwriter. I didn’t know how to move forward. I decided to learn how to tune pianos so that I could at least solve a practical problem and stay connected to the culture somehow. I tuned for the general public and school district, but I also tuned at some killer studios and even for some hit songwriters.

When all you want to do is write songs but you’re not there yet, I think it’s important to figure out what practical problems you’re good at solving. If it’s within music, great. But it can be outside of music, too. Friends of mine started as janitors at studios. Not glamorous, no. But it accomplishes the goal. And the goal is like you said: to be close to the action. When you embed yourself in the culture you learn who people are, how they talk about songs, what artists they’re listening to, etcetera, etcetera.

Thanks for the questions, Jay!


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