I can't believe we're already half way through July! This summer has been flying by—it will be Fall before we know it...This weekend Jordan and I were the worship leaders at Coaches Time Out Great Lakes, and it was such a blessing. It was so great to see the way CTO pours into coaches and their spouses over the course of the weekend, and I'd strongly encourage you to find a CTO in your area if you're a coach of any sport, for any age group! I think I've said it before, but one of my favorite parts of what I do is getting the chance to partner with such a wide variety of churches and ministries, and to see what God is doing in so many people's lives. Today's music monday post features beginner tip # 3: take every opportunity!
In order to be a full-time musician, you have to have enough paying gigs to support yourself (how's that for obvious?). When you're first starting out, you have a few obstacles to overcome before you'll be booking enough shows to live off of. First, you have to get people to hear your music. Then, you need venues willing to let you play. Last, you need to work your way up to gigs that pay you enough that your financial needs are met. Some might disagree and say that you should only take opportunities that distinctly fit your vision for your music and your future, but I have seen the value in taking every opportunity possible, and always encourage beginners to do the same.
When you say yes, you're accomplishing at least two of the three steps mentioned above. If the venue is also willing to pay you, you're well on your way to meeting your goals! There are definitely times that the wise decision is not to play (be it a large financial loss, lack of appropriate material, etc..), but I find those to be a very small percentage of the overall opportunities available. The possibilities are endless, and I encourage those getting started to get creative when seeking opportunities. Just because your end goal is to headline a tour as an artist doesn't mean you should turn down opportunities to play at coffee shops, bars, retreats, school chapels, etc...You could build an amazing local following playing patios, open mic nights, leading worship at a local church, doing house concerts, playing birthday parties or weddings, and so much more!
With the amount of artists and the amount of opportunities, there's not enough time in the day to list all the specific ways you can creatively fill your schedule and walk the road to becoming a full-time musician. I encourage you to view each opportunity with the heart of a servant and an attitude of humility, understanding that you've been given a unique chance to do what you love and potentially make a living while you're doing it! I'll be honest, when I first started, my attitude toward the less desirable shows wasn't always great. God humbled my heart in many ways, and many times those shows were the greatest blessings to our life and ministry. You truly never know what God has planned or how he will use each opportunity.
I hope you'll get outside your comfort zone with new opportunities and I trust that you'll see God work in exciting and wonderful ways in your ministry and career.