Learn the Business
The Main Ingredient Everyone Keeps Missing
If you ask any artist what’s the one thing they need to succeed in this industry they’ll most likely say a manager. When you then ask them why would they need a manager the response is, more often than not, to handle the business. This has perplexed me for the last five years as I’ve come to realize that most artists and producers assume that learning how they can make money is the responsibility of someone else. What baffles me even more is when hiphop artists make this statement but then list the likes of Nipsey Hussle, Russ, Tory Lanez, or Curren$y as one of their favorites. All of these gentlemen have made a living not conforming into signing a deal and remaining independent as long as they felt comfortable. Yet, their fans who swear they are following in their footsteps aren’t applying the information that’s given in their songs.
I try to do a deep dive into why that is and unfortunately I haven’t quite come up with an answer. When I was an artist I followed what Lupe Fiasco and 1st & 15th were doing before they eventually signed a deal with Atlantic Records. I figured since I would want the same success that I might as well follow in his footsteps. I went down to the Hays County Chamber of Commerce in San Marcos, TX , got my DBA, and proceeded to do what I think Lupe would do. That was back in the late 2000’s when being independent was the new black.
I’m not sure where the gap is as I’m very aware that there are tons of outlets giving information away for free on how to make a living being independent. I figured, maybe because I’m so engrossed in it every day that maybe I just have my finger on a pulse that others are overlooking. I try not to assume that others are looking for the same info or know where to look but I always have to ask. How?
It’s been quite a mental exercise.