10 Reasons why Most Musicians and Bands Fail

Reason #1

They don't have a plan of action. - Without any career goals or plans to achieve them, how do you know if you're making any progress? The music business can be a very tough nut to crack, especially if you have no sense of direction. Many record companies, music publishers, managers, producers, entertainment lawyers, and even booking agents won't work with artist's who haven't set any real career goals. They prefer working with musician's who already have their career goals clearly established, and are diligently working toward them on their own.

Reason #2

They don't have the tools needed for success. - The following list contains some of the tools you'll need throughout your professional music career.


- A demo CD consisting of 3-5 of your BEST songs. (Quality does matter!)

- An artists' biography. (Detailing important information about you; including who you are, what you've done, what you're doing currently, where you're headed, etc.)

- A song list. (All the song titles you perform; copies & originals)

- A lyric sheet. (Lyrics to your original song material included on your demo.)

- A fact sheet. (Outlines the information in your bio.)

- Artist Photo.

- Write-ups. (Any interesting stories or reviews written about you which were printed in industry publications or newspapers; or received radio or television coverage.)

- Special Interest Topics. (Have you ever been on TV or the radio? Any claim to fame or reasons why you might appeal to a large audience.)


A very important factor in your success as an artist is by assembling, maintaining, and properly utilizing a mailing list. This list consists of names and contact information of your fans, media contacts, industry insiders, and anyone else who has a general interest (business or otherwise) in you (the artist). A mailing list can be a tremendous asset to any artist once they realize how to use it to its maximum potential.


It's extremely important that you fully utilize the media to advance your music career. This includes all trade publications, magazines, newspapers, radio, television, and the Internet. A well refined, talented artist or band that continually self-promotes has (by far) the best chance of getting "noticed" and signed with a record label. Have you ever heard the expression, "out of sight - out of mind?" You need to be the exact opposite of this! Stay in sight as often as possible and in the minds of as many people as possible. Saturate the industry and the general public with your act and you will go places!

Utilize the media with paid advertisements, "FREE" advertisements, press releases, write-ups & reviews, and radio & television airtime.

Reason #3

They don't have anyone to guide their careers. - One of the responsibilities of an artist's personal manager is to help them make wise career decisions. The problem is that most artists have a very difficult time finding good management, since most of the experienced and "connected" managers are usually busy with their current clientele. For this reason, many musicians ask a friend to be their manager. What usually happens is the friend becomes more of a booking agent than a personal manager. (It's much easier to book a show than to guide a musician's career!) Since these "friends" are often new to the music business they sometimes wind up getting in the way rather than helping.

If it's a manager you want, find a manager! If your friends want to be helpful they can always take money at the door at shows when needed, or they could learn to run your light show! Never put the fate of your career in the hands of someone who has no idea how the music business works and has no experience dealing with others in the business!

Reason #4

They wait to be discovered. - If you're "waiting to be discovered," I have one simple question...   "What are you waiting for?" That's like saying, "I'm waiting to be successful!" It doesn't make sense! What musician's really mean when they say that they're waiting to be discovered is "I'm stalling due to an enormous lack of information!" There's nothing to "wait for" so get going! Demand discovery, never wait for it!

Reason #5

They lack dedication. - Many artists have performed for over 10 years before landing a record deal! That's dedication! That's perseverance! That's the kind of tenacity it takes to succeed in the music business! If you have the dedication to continue through thick and thin and let nothing stand in your way, it's much more likely that good things will happen.

Reason #6

They simply "don't know what to do." - Here they are..."The 3 Secrets to Becoming a Professional Musician and Landing a Recording Contract!"

- Refine your talent! Practice, Practice, Practice!

- Educate yourself about the business! Never assume you know how it works, find out! If you think you'll figure it out as you go, you're right, you will; but it will be by stumbling and falling more times than you'll ever care to tell! It's OK to learn by doing, but don't learn by making one mistake after another. This can be very time consuming and extremely painful to your ego! Get the facts and learn the business the right way!

- Promote, Promote, Promote! You may be the greatest musician or singing sensation that ever walked this planet, but without any promotion nobody will ever know!

Reason #7

They have more reasons why they can't than why they can! - Too many artists set up invisible barriers in their minds that prevent them from hitting it big. Don't let a lack of confidence in your talent or music be what stops you from realizing your dreams. A healthy ego is a necessity in the music business.

Reason #8

They don't have a long-term commitment. - If you cannot honestly see yourself as a performing artist for more than 6 months to a year, than you're obviously going through a phase and for the sake of all of us real musician's; we hope you get over it VERY soon! Being a musician is a lifelong endeavor, not a passing fad! Musician's that succeed in this industry don't stick their toe in to test the water; they dive in head first and never look back! Once a musician, always a musician!

Reason #9

They don't take their act seriously. - If you treat your music as a hobby, that's all it will ever be! If you don't take your music seriously, no one else will either! If your goal is to be a professional musician, you should present yourself and everything you do in a professional manner!

Reason #10

They have absolutely no talent! - One of the biggest reasons why it's so hard to break into the music business is because it's such a saturated industry. Everybody wants to be a star. What makes it even more difficult is that there are so many "wanna-be" musicians out there that they ruin it for musicians who possess real talent! Record companies are bombarded daily with "crappy" demos and submission packages that are so far from industry standards that they're sometimes thrown in the garbage without even being opened! What this means for the professional musician (blazing with raw talent) is that they have to wait until the record company's A&R people finish sorting through this enormous pile of "crap" before they'll ever get a response.

Go Back


Blog Search