If you speak to any successful musician they will always tell you a story about a childhood friend who was more talented themselves, but somehow didn't turn that talent into a career. The problem with a career as a muscian, it generally doesn't come quickly and can take years pounding the street before you get your big break.
Take Ed Sheeran who has recently become one of the biggest selling artists of all time, however it wasn't always the case. In a recent article Ed revealed that he didn’t have anywhere to live for much of 2008 and the whole of 2009 and 2010 and had to sleep rough outside Buckingham Palace. This was the extreme length that he took to become successful, however it's not for everyone.
Often musician's will take a few years to try and make a career of it before moving on with their life. In another example, the mega selling Robbie Williams left Take That in 1995, drifted around for a few years until 1997 when he released Angel's which catapulted him into the mega leagues. Without this song, he openly admits, being a musician may never have taken off for him.
Below we have five reasons to explain why even the most talented musicians still struggle to be successful.
You Don't Understand or Like the Business
There are two sides to a musical career: the creative side and the business side. Generally musicians get into a musical career with romantic ideas of changing the world only to find your best ideas are blocked by people in suits who want to get rich from your talent.
Suddenly you are making compromises you promised yourself you'd never make. Soon you are questioning your own integrity. In these terms the Internet can be a saving grace. You can promote yourself. But how much time will that take? Do you even know how to do it? Do you have time to learn how to do it?
If you're not naturally inclined towards business you can find it exhausting. On the other hand if you're a natural businessman – and some musicians are – you can end up doing very well for yourself.
You Can't Leave Your Day Job
Unless you're like Mozart and were discovered as a small child, it's more than likely you're going to be supporting your musical career with a day job. Often musician's start out trying to do both and generally it works out well. However finding time to practice is often difficult and this can be made worse if you being successful at your day job which in-turn becomes your priority leaving that musical career as a close second. Before you know it, your boss is putting pressure on you to work harder towards your next promotion and that musical career you've been dreaming of becomes a distant memory.
A second scenario is that you fall in love and start a family. You begin your life striving to become the star your children can be proud, but soon reality sets in. The only way you can properly provide for them is by focusing on your day job.
You've Listened to Too Many Pretenders
When it comes to music everybody has an opinion and generally it's in the form of keeping your musical career a hobby whilst focusing on your school work
They've told you negative things such as you'll never make it, and positive things such as you as you the best song writer since Bob Dylan. You've listened to them all, even followed some of their advice, and yet you are still nowhere nearer to achieving your dream.
You've Stopped Having Fun
When you first started playing music it was fun. You hung around with your mates, made new friends, impressed the opposite sex, had tons of new and exciting experiences. Slowly though, as you became better, what was once a hobby, began to feel more like a job. ]
Maybe, for example, you are under contract to write an album you have no interest in making for a company you hate. Maybe you have simply fallen out with your old band members. Either way it's hard not to feel like you want to move on.
You Have A Loyal But Small Audience
There have been great bands who have been critically successful, but have failed to attract a big audience. It's not necessarily a bad situation in the beginning, but after a while you have to think about earning money.
Soon your mind drifts towards getting a so called real job. If this is the case look on the bright side. A lot of musicians in your situation come back