Hi Guys…and welcome back to Biscuit’s Bass Business.
In previous issues, I have identified some of the more basic but essential aspects of what it takes to become a working Bass player, and I will be continuing along those lines as we go, but before you even strap on that Bass of yours and attempt to begin your journey down the road to becoming a pro, remember that as well as the tools of your trade, your closest ally will be your resilience, a strong work ethic together with a good head for business, so be prepared…this is no easy “ride”
We are all aware of the current state of the worldwide economy problems these days, and the music industry as a whole has been suffering as a result of that in many ways, but although it is difficult maintaining a career as a musician, if you really have a genuine passion and desire to make music and perform, along with an iron will, the rewards will always outweigh the pitfalls. Yes it is tough, but in my opinion the sense of achievement felt when giving it everything you’ve got for something you are so passionate about in life, is the most rewarding feeling you will ever experience, so never give up, but you must be prepared to do everything it takes to sustain you financially, and I mean Everything. You will not survive simply by playing in a single covers band averaging one gig per month, as this will usually only average you in the region of between £50 - £150 per gig, so be prepared to get involved with as many projects as you can without compromising your efforts to any of the parties involved.
You may join a band that do have regular work, but even if you/they are booked every weekend for the next five years things are still going to be pretty tough, so be prepared to look at extra options too. Record your own music with a view to selling via iTunes etc. at around 99p per single, or if you have an albums worth of material a realistic price would be between £5.99 and £7.99 depending on amount of content.
Also offer to record for other projects too, and ask them what they have available for you in their budget, rather than putting yourself in the awkward position of asking for too much, which may lose you any potential earnings at all. Teaching is another avenue which is both fulfilling and rewarding, and another way of earning extra income, for which the going rate is around £30.00 per hour, but that is another job in itself which I will go into in more detail next time.
Also in my next column I will be continuing to cover further work and finance issues, as well as delving into ways of gaining more exposure on the internet using social media such as a Website, Facebook, and Twitter etc. Until then…Keep it Low and Remain Bassed.