Supporting roles for a music career

It can be not easy to navigate the music industry. Expect to experience highs, lows, and some right royal curveballs. You can see your life change in an instant beyond what you could have imagined! It can be a mind-numbing pursuit that is based on maybes and making it someday.

A great musician does not guarantee fame and fortune, nor do all songs become hits. You have no chance.

It would be best if you were wise. The best ones will invest heavily!

Consider this: Imagine that. No major corporation would ignore training or staff development.

There are no ‘entry requirements,’ but it’s important to build your skills, knowledge, and mindset for life by working with people who have more experience and education than you.

Four types of direct support can be very useful if you are looking to develop, improve your skills, or find a new direction for your music. Then you can decide who you need.


As children, many of us took music lessons in class or individually on our instruments. Many different levels of music tuition can be tailored to your changing career.

A teacher provides students with a combination of concepts and primary skills to help them gain a deeper understanding of the subject. It is the delivery of information in a controlled environment, such as a classroom. It may have a strong theoretical base and be delivered sequentially through a program or curriculum.

Indeed, more relevant topics are now being taught in such an environment, such as studio production and songwriting. You may not have the time or the money to complete a degree. However, a 3-month course in modern harmony for guitar or vocal production or How to Write Songs for Sync will help you improve your skills.

You can invest in learning and being taught rather than getting random tips from internet videos.

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It’s a hands-on, in situ experience that can go hand in hand and work with teaching. The training fine-tunes your whole body response and habits for the environment in which you’ll be presenting music, whether it be on stage, screen, or studio.

Training is similar to a personal trainer who walks you through lifting weights and doing cardio. It can also be done by performing drills that improve your performance, studio production or media training, songwriting rhyme schemes, or writing prompts within a set timeframe.

You can easily record your efforts by recording each session on video or phone. These incremental improvements and adjustments will eventually accumulate. At some point, repetition becomes important. You can perform better if you have someone to help you with vocal training or a band that is rehearsing within the same environment as your workplace.


A good coach can help you to focus on the bigger picture or strategy. They will also identify the specific goals that need to be met, prioritize them, and determine the best way to accomplish them within a specific and structured timeframe (tactic).

It is a relationship that tends to be more structured and formal.

You can be held more accountable and achieve your goals – whether it’s finding your musical niche or reaching your milestones. It’s outcome-based.

A coach can help you formulate a strategy, establish goals, and map out the steps to reach the desired result. A good coach will challenge your decisions and ask you to think about them. They will guide you step-by-step in the right direction to help you succeed. They’ll give you advice to help you get back on track if you lose your direction.

Sometimes, hiring a music coach to help you with your career or business can be a real eye-opener.


The roles of a mentor and coach are not interchangeable. A mentor relationship is often more formal and long-term.

Mentors can offer support based on their own experience – they have ‘been there and done that’ more than you.

Mentors are role models that can be seen up close. By being in their company, talking about your goals and concerns, or just watching how they handle situations, you can learn a lot. This can be extremely valuable, and many musicians credit their careers to long-term relationships.

Since they’ve faced similar challenges and opportunities, good mentors are able to share their knowledge and skills in depth with their mentees. It can have more subtle benefits such as creative and financial benefits or access to industry. This is particularly relevant at high levels when the game changes and the impact on the individual is more complex.

Depending on your musical career, you may need to use more than one support option at a time. Always keep an eye out for people who are talented and dedicated to helping you along your path. You can be pushed in the right direction by the right people.

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