Whether you’re friends with a musician, dating one, or simply making conversation, there are certain things that will trigger an independent music artist into getting irritated at best, and dislike you as a person at worst. Of course, if you’re trying to intentionally piss one off, this is the perfect recipe for disaster. Use at your own peril. Better if you don’t!
10. You should copy the new sound that everyone is listening to these days!
Music artists FIGHT every single day to keep their authenticity, and the ‘cool stuff’ you’re hearing now, was once someone’s sole idea as well. Stop underestimating musicians just because they don’t sound like what you’re used to.
9. You did the whole video yourself?
This is only acceptable if there’s a WOW coming after it. But often, it’s more like, ‘oh, I thought you had a team’, inherently diminishing the value of the artist only because they’re going at it alone. Stop with this crap. Stop thinking artists can only do good with a ton of other people involved. An extremely talented artist can very well learn every single skill he/she needs to pull off professional-looking music videos.
8. Why you haven’t put out music in so long?
Because do you know the costs of releasing a professionally recorded, mixed, and mastered song? Over a thousand dollars!!! In ANY country. So count that in before offending your musician friend, who probably blames themselves for the lack of resources needed to release good music more often.
7. You should try X Factor (or any other talent show).
Before you EVER allow yourself to say this to a musician, we highly recommend you go sign up for the selection process yourself and see how that goes. The casting is ridiculous, from Non-Disclosure Agreements at the gates, to the signature that allows the show to edit the footage however they see fit for more attention —thus the exaggerated reactions you see on YouTube when in reality, the big majority happened at different moments and for different artists— you feel like nothing more than a grain of sand being thrown around. You will also have to wait for inhumane hours in crappy places, without any offered food or water by the staff, just to get all sweaty and tired in front of a few people who are not even the final judges you will see on TV. Without trying to throw shade at certain musicians, those who go to these talent shows are part of one of the four groups: desperate, delusional, rookie, unemployed.
6. Why don’t you have a manager yet?
BECAUSE MANAGERS ARE GOOD FOR NOTHING UNLESS THEY KNOW WHAT THEY’RE DOING AND ARE INVESTED IN YOU. The musician is often the person who is most invested in themselves, which translates to putting in more work than the label plus manager combined. So what good is another person meddling in your business when you know best what to do next? Rarely are there other people who are willing to match the artist’s efforts or even surpass them.
5. How come you’re never hanging out with X, Y, Z artists?
X, Y, Z being some local, famous names who’ve managed to get out of anonymity. This is an especially insidious way of indirectly putting a musician down by comparing them to someone from the same city/ background who’s achieved a higher level of success. Actually, if you ask this, we hope your musician friend cuts you off from their life. Nobody deserves to be compared to somebody else. How come you post your kids’ photos 24/7 without their permission?
4. Why don’t you go to school/ college/ university?
Why don’t you mind YOUR business? People have different life experiences and various missions from when they’re born until their time is up. Be respectful of that. In the U.S. especially, it is not the most intelligent or financially wise decision to pursue a degree if one is truly 100% committed to making it in the music business. It is wasted time and money. Plus, if one seriously wants to learn a new skill, they can ALWAYS go back to studying at ANY age. We’re not in the ’50s or even ’90s anymore.
3. Who’s paying for your living costs?
Your mom? Again, none of your business! Musicians are creative individuals who will often rotate between jobs in order to upkeep their living necessities and simultaneously pursue their musical ambitions. Every musician, with extremely rare exceptions, struggles financially before they make it.
2. You’re still doing music?
You’re still a condescending character? What if someone asked you, you’re still in your mom’s house? Still at the same job? Still with the same average-looking girlfriend? Long-lost connections and childhood friends are the fucking best at casually throwing this question around like it’s nothing. It is ugly and highly offensive to ask a musician if they’re still doing music. Even when a music artist is forced by life and circumstances to choose another path, it leaves a deep scar in their soul, and it hurts them every single time they see someone else living their dream. Be quiet if you don’t know what else to say. You will be more liked and appreciated.
1. Aren’t you tired of doing music for so long without having made it yet?
Life is hard, things happen, and problems are never expected. Oftentimes, musicians will have to take long detours from pursuing their careers as they have to dedicate their time and resources to urgent matters, like overcoming mental health issues, substance abuse, sick parents, birth of a child, loss of a job. Be kind when you open your mouth and assume you never know the full picture because you don’t.
Blue Rhymez Entertainment ©2023
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