Woke up to a nice interview with guitarist Lance Seymour on http://www.musicianwages.com. He talks about his career as a full-time musician and about the online resource he started called Gear Talk. There’s a link to the full article below. I especially like the part about thinking bigger than your immediate gig and treating every gig as an interview for the next. That’s so important and true. A nice reminder to give it all you got every time. Here’s an excerpt:
What advice would you give specifically to young guitarists that want to make a living playing music?
HA! Why would anyone want to make a living playing music? No, I think being a professional musician is awesome and I would not trade it for another job.
I think it’s important for young musicians to learn the type of things that really get you work:
Knowing tons and tons of songs and playing them all authentically is huge for getting gigs. Constantly be adding to your repertoire.
Learn musicians’ language, terms and phrases so you know what people are talking about in rehearsals and on stage.
Also LEARN NUMBER CHORDS. It’s so important for musicians to be able to recognize chords by their numerical name. No excuse for not knowing them and being able to read them.
I think for guitarists in general, need to be able to able to tailor their tone to whatever style they happen to be playing at the time. Guitarists have so many choices when it comes to gear and effects, in general. It’s important to know how to dial it in and make it feel right for the song.
One piece of advise I give to younger players all time comes from that saying “dress for the job you want, not the job you have.” Meaning basically to do every gig like it’s your dream gig. Just because you’re doing what you consider a ‘less than stellar’ gig, you have no excuse to give less than 100% to it. It’s disrespectful to the people you’re working with and to yourself. That attitude will lead to the gigs you actually want to be doing.