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  1. #1

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    Article

    "It depends on what people define as a living," she says. In her experience, a sideman can make $100–$200 a night for a regular gig, depending. (Others told me $50 a night is not uncommon.) But if you're the leader, you have to see to it that your musicians are paid, even if you get nothing — even if you lose money on the deal. "What I define as a living is not what other people, who earn six figures, do. I have health insurance, but it's the lowest tier you can get, and I'm still reluctant to even have it." She laughs. "I don't have enough money to buy anything. If I choose to have kids, I don't know how much money I'd have for college. It's enough to live and be happy and get by...but it's something I'm really going to have to think about. So much money I save gets invested back in the work.

    Her saxophonist Stephens, 37, a Berklee College of Music grad who's lived in New York since 2004, agrees. "The pay is not sustainable. I don't know how people are doing it," he says. "People in their thirties, forties, fifties have roommates still because they're still not able to make a decent living."

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  3. #2

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    Jazz musicians do it for the love of the music not money, but they should still be able to make a livable income. The Arts get no respect in this country and that's disgraceful.

  4. #3

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    Yeah, there's no romance in being a starving artist. You'd better love it for all it's worth, because that'll be 90% of your takeaway.

  5. #4

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    jazz is an art which needs a kind of education to be understood.
    And the main problem for jazz is the audience.

    You go to play soporific music for a good fee in a garden party.
    And you go to play for free a more complex music in a little pub.

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by nado64 View Post
    jazz is an art which needs a kind of education to be understood.
    And the main problem for jazz is the audience.
    what audience? i honestly think there are more people interested in how to play jazz than actually listening to the music

  7. #6

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    hmm...this article hits home...forgive me if this a bit of a tangent...a relevant story, imo, tho:

    i spent years in nashville doing a lot of road dates and session work while trying to get my chops up for the jazz world ...even playing commercial music, i still felt chewed up and spit out by the end. 'the end' tho was 2008, gas prices were affecting my road work and I was 23 with no skills besides being able to play/read music.

    I had started playing in a lot of jazz/funk/improv groups with a lot of people who had degrees, even a few professors...i hardly knew much of the academic music world besides regional jazz band in high school befpre that...I was hooked...then a reality Ms. Oh touched on came to light:

    Even Oh admits, "I'm afraid it'll end up being only the kids with money."

    Unable to sustain a living in Nashville off the road, I moved back to Pittsburgh...the "good" school for music here costs around $35k a year, and you have to pay for lessons outside of that ...when I was studying bass privately with a teacher from there, it was $60 an hour. (now, to me, it was worth every penny...but the sustainability of that for a non-rich-kid is another story)

    A little less than a century ago, a jazz education seemed like an apprenticeship ...today, you're almost dead in the water without a pricey degree...or, at least, without the networking that came with that pricey degree...

    I lived music purely for the love of it...I lived poor and worked shitty jobs to keep my schedule open, did the cliche 10 hour a day thing forever (still would, i am a practice nerd)...I did what I thought were the right things and ended up being miserable.

    I actually ended up taking a 7 year hiatus from playing gigs altogether and did a couple years of music school at a community college in the interim...which was actually great--I realized that I actually love playing and studying a lot more than playing gigs. ...I've been back at it for a year doing only gigs I truly want, it's been a lot better.

    I guess I don't know what my point is (lol) ...besides to say that I really feel the struggle presented in this article. I don't know anything about NYC, but I can only imagine it's way harder than Nashville. Cheers!

  8. #7

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    You maybe right nick.

    There seems to be more excitement even around here about what happened in 1959 than say the fantastic releases of now. I downloaded today from iTunes this weeks release by Szyman Mika. Can't understand why a jazz guitar forum is not all over this and discussing, it is a stunning work of art.

    Gilad Hekselman is gonna go down as a great, they will talk more about him in 30 years than we are now?
    “When you’re creating your own ...., man, even the sky ain’t the limit.”
    Miles Davis

  9. #8

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    when I was 17, me and my buddy Sam realized that $50 a night...and I mean strait to you for 3 hours that ain't bad...but if you do it 365 days a year (and nobody plays every night of the year) but if you did, it doesn't even come up to 20k for the year.

  10. #9

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    The masses of players there (in NY) know why they are there. If it's their trip and they are following a vision then they'll make it work until it's plain they really cant -or things change. I have a couple of good friends in NY who work regularly in different bands and have loved it all despite the ongoing poverty and struggle. Maybe it will change for them one day, I know it has for some folks.

  11. #10

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    "I have health insurance, but it's the lowest tier you can get, and I'm still reluctant to even have it." She laughs. "I don't have enough money to buy anything. If I choose to have kids, I don't know how much money I'd have for college."

    Nobody is owed a living so they can be a "artiste".

    Why would anyone think they can make a decent living being a jazz musician?

    This ain't 1940 folks.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    "I have health insurance, but it's the lowest tier you can get, and I'm still reluctant to even have it." She laughs. "I don't have enough money to buy anything. If I choose to have kids, I don't know how much money I'd have for college."

    Nobody is owed a living so they can be a "artiste".

    Why would anyone think they can make a decent living being a jazz musician?

    This ain't 1940 folks.
    That is pretty hard, Drumbler. But you know something? You might just be onto something here.

    Before I came to this forum, I thought to myself that the becuase the forces of economics and politics shape my world, I had better try my best to find a way to earn a living that will allow me to meet my own needs and maybe even a few wants.

    Since coming to this forum and having a chance to converse with dedicated artists and such, I see there are those who feel they ought to be able to earn a decent living if their cause is worthwhile ( the arts for example).

    It really seems for me, to boil down to how you feel about minimum wage and living wage, and socio-economics in general, as well as how you feel about government artificially sustaining endeavors that cannot sustain themselves economically, and need government, or some caring patron/institution to step in.

  13. #12

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    I don't think anyone here or in those articles is talking about being "owed". I don't think these musicians are claiming to be "owed" just because they are lamenting that being a top performing artist is unsustainable in our society. I think it is sad too, that doesn't mean I think I am "owed" free music.

    And as far as the arts earning their keep, of course they don't. They never have. That's almost the definition of art, at least a major characteristic.

    Music is a pleasure. It doesn't "produce" anything. To have music, people growing crops have to share their food with musicians. Since the dawn of civilization. To have the arts we have to come together and support it and the artist who perform it. You think coming together as a society and supporting the arts is a waste? OK. Weird to me, but OK.

    As a final note, I have a five year old daughter. Everything we watch on TV geared to children here in the US, and I mean EVERYTHING, drums the message that they are to follow their passions, be true to themselves, never waiver, never give up. I can see why some children grow up putting in the hard work and selfless devotion feeling a little betrayed by the older generations telling them, "tough sh*t! Go be a corporate serf! No one promised you anything!" Especially when they see documentaries about those same grandparents spending their 20's and even 30's bumming around the Haight or Greenwich Village smoking grass and playing in drum circles.

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    "I have health insurance, but it's the lowest tier you can get, and I'm still reluctant to even have it." She laughs. "I don't have enough money to buy anything. If I choose to have kids, I don't know how much money I'd have for college."

    Nobody is owed a living so they can be a "artiste".

    Why would anyone think they can make a decent living being a jazz musician?

    This ain't 1940 folks.
    Even when you're touring with a multiple Grammy winner (Pat Metheny) who will only play with the absolute elite of musicians in the world?

  15. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    Everything we watch on TV geared to children here in the US, and I mean EVERYTHING, drums the message that they are to follow their passions, be true to themselves, never waiver, never give up. I can see why some children grow up putting in the hard work and selfless devotion feeling a little betrayed by the older generations telling them, "tough sh*t! Go be a corporate serf!
    exactly this....
    ES-175VOSsp..SadowskySemi..Ibanez S6521Q w/GK3..DV Mark LJ..Dispatch Master V2..Atomic CLR..BossGP10..Line6.G10
    https://soundcloud.com/user852059642/tracks

  16. #15

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    My friend Rooster paid big bucks to go to tap dancing academy and can't find work anywhere...who'd a thunk it?

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by yaclaus View Post
    Even when you're touring with a multiple Grammy winner (Pat Metheny) who will only play with the absolute elite of musicians in the world?
    It is upsetting for many to hear that devoting your life to being a jazz musician is not financially a great idea.

    I don't know what Metheny pays his band members.

    Hopefully enough to get good health insurance and set aside money for a place to live, savings for retirement, and raising their family.

    Metheny is probably the pre-eminent jazz guitarist in the world. He is 62.

    Metheny would play his music for nothing most likely. It is his passion. It's great for him people will pay to hear and see him.

    He has managed to accumulate about $5 million dollars which is just fine but not fantastic by celebrity standards.

    The greatest in just about anything do ok. The 1%. In this case the .001%.

    Being a sculptor, or someone who makes art out of scrap metal is also probably not a great way to ensure financial security.

    Now if you get great personal satisfaction out of it then it's fine. Don't expect society to reward you for your work. Society may not care in the least.

    Society does not care in the least for jazz musicians.

    So, when you pay your $60k+ to go to Berklee and study jazz performance, and then graduate and find no jobs playing jazz for good money, don't cry about it. Nobody held a gun to your head and made you do it.

    Pat Metheny's net worth:

    http://www.celebritiesmoney.com/pat-metheny-net-worth-musician-songwriter/





    Last edited by Drumbler; 08-16-2016 at 08:20 AM.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    .

    Being a sculptor, or someone who makes art out of scrap metal is also probably not a great way to ensure financial security.

    Now if you get great personal satisfaction out of it then it's fine. Don't expect society to reward you for your work. Society may not care in the least.

    Society does not care in the least for jazz musicians.

    So, when you pay your $60k+ to go to Berklee and study jazz performance, and then graduate and find no jobs playing jazz for good money, don't cry about it. Nobody held a gun to your head and made you do it.

    Sadly, this is the true, bare-knuckle reality of things. And sadly, the part of me that is still a bit of a romantic is saddened.

    Society-at-large is getting tired of paying for others to have their flights of fancy. Here in Texas, there is a big debate about financing a new baseball stadium (around a billion dollar proposition). The argument is that many don't attend games so why should they bankroll baseball fans and teams. (And they don't believe the economic impact is a great as the Texas Rangers say it will be, such that the city would get its money back many times over.)

    Many make the same argument with the Arts.

  19. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    I.. they are lamenting that being a top performing artist is unsustainable in our society.....
    forget about "top performing artist"

    when I started playing gigs, regular working musicians in every city and town in America had enough work (because there was live music in a lot more places than today) to make a modest living

    you see, you used to be able to work 5 or 6 nights a week and you didn't need to be "top recording talent" to make rent and pay your bills

    hell, I had 2 friends growing up that their dads were professional musicians. They were regular dads, they just worked nights. That was when I decided to be a guitar player for a career.

    then it seemed like the work dried up in the 80s and never really come back. People used to go out during the week, and definitely went out to dinner or something on weekends, and live music was a popular entertainment. but people stay home more now and there's just not as much work to go around

    but if "top recording talent" can't make rent, then what chance have regular working musicians got?

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post

    So, when you pay your $60k+ to go to Berklee and study jazz performance....



    when I went to NTSU in the 80s it was $10 a credit hour. Even with special fees for private lessons and practice rooms the semester bill was around $500. I paid for each semester of classes by reaching one hand into my pocket and pulling out cash money.


    .....just sayin

  21. #20

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    The change in the drinking age from 18 to 21 just killed the nightclub/bar business.

    There were nightclubs that had 3 bands in 3 separate rooms! Rock/pop bands I mean. And the rooms were packed.

    It was young people (16-23) who were the big band fans in the 1920s, 30s, and early 40s.
    Last edited by Drumbler; 08-16-2016 at 11:13 AM.
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumbler View Post
    The change in the drinking age from 18 to 21 just killed the nightclub/bar business.

    There were nightclubs that had 3 bands in 3 separate rooms! Rock/pop bands I mean. And the rooms were packed.

    It was young people (16-23) who were the big band fans in the 1920s, 30s, and early 40s.
    I'm telling ya! yea, I remember what it was like playing the downtown rock and roll clubs when I was in high school. Packed to the rafters on a Tuesday night.

    and do you remember the last time you had a 6-nighter? its been a quarter century since I've been booked more than one night at a time.

    I remember how after the 6 nighters dried up, we would still get booked for a whole weekend in the 80s. The standard deal we got was we played Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We'd make all our money off the door Friday and Saturday and then play Sunday to an empty room, but the place had live music for anybody that did come in. So we took the loss Sunday to make the money on Friday and Saturday. Hell, that was 30 years ago now

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate Miller View Post
    when I went to NTSU in the 80s it was $10 a credit hour. Even with special fees for private lessons and practice rooms the semester bill was around $500. I paid for each semester of classes by reaching one hand into my pocket and pulling out cash money.


    .....just sayin
    I think you just laid your finger on the generational gap. From after WWII until about the 90's public higher education was essentially free in the US, and of the highest order. Some say that was our greatest national competitive advantage.

    Now, kids graduating from the SUNY system can expect to be $60K or more in debt (and thats WITH a part time job). SUNY costs $17,000 a year JUST IN TUITION AND FEES. That does not include the cost of living. The UC system is the same.

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    I think you just laid your finger on the generational gap. From after WWII until about the 90's public higher education was essentially free in the US, and of the highest order. Some say that was our greatest national competitive advantage.

    Now, kids graduating from the SUNY system can expect to be $60K or more in debt (and thats WITH a part time job). SUNY costs $17,000 a year JUST IN TUITION AND FEES. That does not include the cost of living. The UC system is the same.
    Check this...

    SUNY Albany tuition & fees: Tuition and Costs - University at Albany-SUNY
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  25. #24

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    Yes, exactly. I was looking at this:

    https://www.suny.edu/smarttrack/tuition-and-fees/

    You can see that tuition is $11,920 plus $4,820 in indirect costs. That does not include rent, food, etc. Community college isn't far behind.

    EDIT: I see they added $3800 for a year's worth of rent and food. Is that a joke? Where can you pay rent and feed yourself for $320 a month? In any case, the point is made. This ain't no $10 a semester.
    Last edited by rlrhett; 08-16-2016 at 06:04 PM.

  26. #25

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    Lots of money to be made in education.

    I saw Jonathan Kriesberg play in New York in front of my wife and I and 3 others. Ripping performance $10 ahead but I am sure he could pull together 20 people at $10,000 a pop for a 30 hours a week 25 week intensive.
    “When you’re creating your own ...., man, even the sky ain’t the limit.”
    Miles Davis

  27. #26

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    The idea of being a jazz musician may be self-limiting. I've made a living playing music for 50 years, but I haven't done a "jazz" gig for 10 years, since they actually pay less than they did in 1975 (in real terms). However, my jazz training and playing set the stage for a great career backing stars, arranging for singers, being music director for organizations, playing solo gigs, doing pit work, recording sessions, and eventually producing both live and recorded projects (including presenting the MJQ, Gary Burton, John Faddis with McCoy Tyner, Stan Getz, Barney Kessel and Herb Ellis, Jim Hall, Kenny Burrell, etc., etc.), as well as teaching stints at NEC, Berklee and Wesleyan. It's a big world, and all the music I played included, strangely enough, the same 12 notes. Even now, in what is by any measure a lousy artistic economy, I am quite busy and completely musically satisfied. Having said that, I would not move back to New York City, since I learned how to create good work wherever I live, and New York players will come to me for good work.

    I guess the moral, such as it is, is that one can play plenty of jazz without having to be exclusively a jazz musician, and when a jazz musician plays other styles, it's often to the benefit of the music. I love to hire jazz musicians for commercial gigs, it makes the gig so much better, as long as they know that they won't be doing Inner Urge or Confirmation on that gig.

  28. #27

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    My guess is (same as a few folks I knew in the Classical world and rock too), that some players who "making their living" playing jazz hail from families with deep pockets and this allows them to do what they want. They are pursuing their passion and are not truly dependent on earning a living. I have no problem with that at all. It has been said that "art does not exist without wealth" and it's true on many levels and in many ways.
    Pretty much the same thing with many national/international athletes, you can't compete at the world level if you can't train 8 hours a day, and you can't train 8 hours a day if you're holding down another job. Even "pros" who don't have million dollar contracts; you might be surprised how many are still in sports because of family money or a spouse that has a high paying job. I personally respect anyone who uses their wealth to allow them to follow a passion to accomplish something, as opposed to just buying sh*t because they can.
    Last edited by whiskey02; 08-16-2016 at 10:04 PM.
    Ignorance is agony.



  29. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    Yes, exactly. I was looking at this:

    https://www.suny.edu/smarttrack/tuition-and-fees/

    You can see that tuition is $11,920 plus $4,820 in indirect costs. That does not include rent, food, etc. Community college isn't far behind.

    EDIT: I see they added $3800 for a year's worth of rent and food. Is that a joke? Where can you pay rent and feed yourself for $320 a month? In any case, the point is made. This ain't no $10 a semester.
    What am I missing here?

    2016-17 Undergrad Tuition and fees only annual: $9,263

    http://www.albany.edu/studentaccount...l_07272016.pdf

    2016-17 Grad Tuition and fees only annual: $12,734

    http://www.albany.edu/studentaccount...ATES_Final.pdf
    "As for me, all I know is that I know nothing." - Socrates
    “Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun.” - Alan Wilson Watts

  30. #29

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    Ron, that's what guys I've known that made a living out of music always did, too. They taught lessons, did arranging, music director for organizations, church organist, instrument repair, whatever they could that had to do with music.

    To be a musician, you have to think like a small businessman. This is my weakness. Some people are good bosses, some people are good employees. I'm a good employee.

  31. #30

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    Apparently you are missing that the $12K figure (from SUNY, not making this up) includes an allowance of $3800 for "room and board" for the commuting student.

    The chart you show is actually MORE expensive.

    However, let's leave it at you are right. Four decades ago you paid for your college with spare change from your pocket walking chest deep in snow uphill --both ways. If it worked then, it must work today. These kids today need to pull their pants up, stop their yimmer-yamming and stay off your lawn! Dag-nabbit!

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    However, let's leave it at you are right. Four decades ago you paid for your college with spare change from your pocket walking chest deep in snow uphill --both ways. If it worked then, it must work today. These kids today need to pull their pants up, stop their yimmer-yamming and stay off your lawn! Dag-nabbit!
    no, 4 decades ago in-state tuition in Texas was very cheap. This was because the taxes from the oil money helped fund state universities. When the oil market crashed in the late 80s, the out of state tuition went way up, and a lot of the out of state students went away, too.

    when I got back from the Navy then and went back to study electrical engineering in 1994, my in-state tuition at North Texas (even without all the special fees from the school of music) was over 2 grand a semester and I had to take out a loan

    I paid my loan back at 8%, too (so you modern day student-loan crybabies are just breaking my heart)

    but we at North Texas had absolutely the best education for dirt cheap

    and it was really the oil money that made that possible. At the time, out of state tuition at NTSU was cheaper than in-state tuition in a lot of other states.

  33. #32

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    "back in the day" there were far more clubs to play at..Venice CA..you could almost walk to several clubs from each other..for under $10 you could hear a lot of very good live music..rock jazz and original stuff..all small clubs..on a good night you could feed yourself and buy some new strings..with luck you may even get some gigs at bigger clubs and string several of those together..do some studio work or teach..and actually pay the rent playing music..but it was not a day at the beach..it was work..don't miss a phone call..and don't be late for a audition, rehearsal or studio dates..

    when it started to change-mid/late 80's..I found finance management for wealthy folks was a way to pay the rent without losing sleep..and I still had time to play/study music..so I saved over 1/3 of my pay for years..just threw it in a big box bank..now today I can play music all day and not have to worry about paying the rent..the gigs are far fewer..but I am also far more selective..I don't HAVE to play Pop songs or Rock tributes to the Stones..I write my own stuff..and have some musicians to jam with..if we get some work..fine..if not..more time to practice..

    being a pro musician in a high cost city is a true test of dedication..there was a time I didn't think about missing a meal or sharing living space..I was a working musician starving for the art...and while that is true of many..the stars get a lot dimmer as time goes by and $50 for four hours works is not cutting it anymore..

    Im glad I lived in those times and know about it..but would I do it again..I don't think I could do that today..I see so many hopefuls .. recording on their iPhones..wanting to be..

    the rules and times have changed..the direction and styles of music have changed..where it will be in time...would Parker be able to pay the rent today..?
    play well ...
    wolf

  34. #33

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    [QUOTE=wolflen;682628..but it was not a day at the beach..it was work..don't miss a phone call..and don't be late for a audition, rehearsal or studio dates..

    [/QUOTE]

    that is how I remember it, too. seemed like in the mid 80s all the work dried up and just never come back

    and that is no kidding....you didn't miss phone calls, you were never late, and you said "yes" to anything that didn't involve committing felonies.

    we used to say back then that the only thing we would ever turn down was our collar

  35. #34

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    London right

    I go see amazing players in pubs
    Usually free with £3 for the raffle

    I mean world class players , amazing
    Chops and lines , Laurence
    Cottle , jim mullen , Derek Nash ,
    Alan Barnes etc etc

    I don't know how they do it financially
    Teaching i guess ...
    They should be subsidized

  36. #35

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    It truly does seem that with the aging of the Baby Boomers in the US the opportunity to earn a decent living playing music is restricted to a fairly rarified few. Considering symphony players and other genres of music apart from rap and the country music styles.

    I can't help but think that one of the greats, George Benson, suggested that the key to his breakthrough as a pop star and perhaps a vision of a viable future for jazz aspirants who also like to eat daily was to play a kind of jazzed up R&B.

  37. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate Miller View Post
    Ron, that's what guys I've known that made a living out of music always did, too. They taught lessons, did arranging, music director for organizations, church organist, instrument repair, whatever they could that had to do with music.

    To be a musician, you have to think like a small businessman. This is my weakness. Some people are good bosses, some people are good employees. I'm a good employee.
    Great points, Nate. i taught a Business of Music Production course at Berklee, and the basis of it was that musicians and producers are small businessmen, and I took them through all the business basics. many have since become reasonably successful in various aspects of the music biz because they got an opportunity to see the nuts and bolts of the business side. Every arts school should have required courses like this.

  38. #37

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    This has been posted before on here but it is pertinent to the discussion, from a world famous musician on the state of the musical arts. "I now have my own record label because if I didn't I wouldn't have a record label..."


  39. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by rlrhett View Post
    Especially when they see documentaries about those same grandparents spending their 20's and even 30's bumming around the Haight or Greenwich Village smoking grass and playing in drum circles.


    Well that is the thing .. Those grandparents have 20/20 hindsight. They are well aware that waisting your 20s come at a cost. Coorporate life doesn't have to be a bad thing .. and imagine putting the effort that is needed to stay afloat in the NY jazz world into the coorporate world.


    That being said all of it takes talent and/or passion be it music or coorporate life ... and if you have no talent or passion then you can't persue coorporate life without becoming miserable. Personally I don't have the passion for coorporate life, but as luck would have it, I've managed to do well on pure talent - despite waisting my 20s. For that I'm grateful.

  40. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by ronjazz View Post
    Great points, Nate. i taught a Business of Music Production course at Berklee, and the basis of it was that musicians and producers are small businessmen, and I took them through all the business basics. many have since become reasonably successful in various aspects of the music biz because they got an opportunity to see the nuts and bolts of the business side. Every arts school should have required courses like this.
    that's cool that classes like that exist now. When I was at NTSU, we all said that a business class geared to musicians would have been great.

  41. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nate Miller View Post
    that's cool that classes like that exist now. When I was at NTSU, we all said that a business class geared to musicians would have been great.

    nate..remember...the early 60's folk rock..evolved into ROCK (thank you Monterey Pop Festival-the FIRST rock concert) it was just beginning to be thought of as a business..that was guitar centric..

    which is strange as 50's R&R was an established form..many record lables and "stars" and live concerts..but...it was NOT guitar centric..

    everyone who saw Hendrix (Beatles) for the first time wanted a guitar..to be in a group etc..business was not even a consideration to most kids..thus .. many top rock acts made millions and ended up broke...

    the business end of Rock evolved in a piece meal way..guys from established labels had to understand what they were going to do with this "new" music..this is when FM was still "commercial free" and not everyone had FM..(who needs it??)

    while mainstream jazz was well established...the new players were going in a very different direction..and did not have the media appeal or a large following..

    (I saw Mahavishnu when they were still unknown..at the Whiskey in LA..it was a small room then 350-400-like being in a pressure cooker-unreal)

    so the business aspect in now mandatory in a musicians career..and as technology advances..the home studio and all it entails is another steep learning curve that must be considered..Im still dealing with that aspect..
    play well ...
    wolf

  42. #41

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    Isn't the drought that musicians face in this country regarding gigs and remuneration as discussed by McLaughlin more acute for jazz than most other styles of music? Country still seems to thrive at least at the commercial level.

  43. #42

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    around 40 years ago. A old jazz player in New Orleans who was there at the beginning of jazz told me Jazz it's just a bad nickname. He said all music is jazz and jazz is all music. He said follow Miles Davis. I said miles understands this music.. then I learn David Sanborn and Stanley Clarke also understands is this music.. jazz is a living evolving music it is not static.. when it becomes static it becomes no longer relevant.. people refuse to change but that's what you have to do.. Reinventing myself and starting over is the hardest thing I've ever done.. so many things about this new music industry are exciting.

  44. #43

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    My impression is that it isn't enough to be a great jazz player.

    You have to be significantly better than that.

    And, it really helps if your skill set includes original music, different styles, reading, teaching, arranging, composition, bandleading etc. all at a world class level.

    If you don't have all that going on, you're going to have trouble competing with musicians who do.

    Over the last two years, I've gone three times to hear Strings Attached (Jack Wilkins, Joe Cohn, Vic Juris and Mark Whitfield, bass and drums) at the Zinc Bar, which is small. All of the shows were great. None of the shows was sold out. $20 admission, reasonable drink prices. Nice club.

    It puts me in mind of a Richard Belzer line, "If Mick Jagger can't get no satisfaction, I'm a f^&*( * mummy".