Here’s an interesting question that I found in my inbox recently:
“I’m a keyboardist but my vocals are not the greatest. What part of the industry should I be looking to get into? And how?”
This is the kind of question that a LOT of musicians are asking. So it’s important for me to address it.
But what I want to point out about it is the fact that this is fundamentally the wrong question to ask.
First of all, this question is laden with false assumptions.
If your vocals are not the greatest, that doesn’t automatically disqualify you from doing what you want to do and relegate you to being assigned to a particular part of the industry by someone else.
It may just mean you need more vocal training.
Secondly, I’m not here to tell musicians what they should be.
That’s not my bag, baby! **cheeky British accent**
I’m here to help you realize your full potential in doing what you WANT to do. That’s where satisfaction and happiness come from.
Let me tell you a story:
I should NOT have been an athlete.
I come from a long line of short, chubby, nerds. And I’m not particularly coordinated. “Clumsy” is pretty accurate.
But after watching Greg Louganis dominate the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, I KNEW I wanted to be a diver.
We didn’t have any youth diving programs in my area so the opportunity didn’t come until I got to high school, where we had a team but no coach.
The older divers taught the younger divers. And we watched the training video “World Class Form” pretty much every day.
Needless to say I didn’t become a world class athlete in high school. I became proficient (at best) on the 1-meter springboard.
Then, when I decided to go to the University of Michigan for college, I wrote the diving coach a letter asking if I could walk on to the team there.
I had no idea at the time that I was writing to one of the most renowned coaches in the history of the sport. Dick Kimball coached divers in EVERY Olympics between 1958 and when he retired in 2003. Including several gold medalists.
And I definitely wasn’t at a skill level that warranted joining the winningest team in NCAA history (in ANY sport).
But Kimball didn’t care. He only cared that I give it my full effort, and was coachable. So he graciously allowed me to join the team and he treated me just like anyone else.
By the time I graduated, I had not only learned to do the same dives as the Olympians on the 3-meter springboard, I had come to specialize in the 10-meter platform.
I finished as high as 4th at the Big Ten Conference Championships and as high as 17th at the U.S. National Championships. (I bet you didn’t see THAT coming)
Kimball even told me that turning me into a REAL diver was one of his proudest accomplishments.
Of course none of that would have ever happened if I had asked somebody else which sport I should participate in. They would have probably told me to join the mathletes or the debate team.
I decided to pursue what I WANTED to do and worked with a great coach who helped me realize my full potential. And I accomplished a lot more than I ever thought was possible.
I realize that’s a pretty long-winded answer as to why I can’t tell you which area of music you should pursue. So I’ll keep the answer to “How?” short and sweet:
Work with a world-class coach who helps you realize your full potential.
Which is exactly who I am to musicians in the Musicpreneur Apprentice Program.
Are you ready to pursue your dreams?