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  1. #51

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    I also thought maybe it depends on the player's (his manager's) strategy too... and how he can coordicate his ambition for gigs and the market demand.

    Bobby Broom and his group are very subtle and sophisticated players but at the same time they have quite conventional format.. they can have bigger audience and probably are eager to have it, an dprobably try to look in the places they think appropriate for that.

    I am subscribed on FB to some guitarists' pages (like Frisell, Lage, Lund, Sco etc) and I get notifications.

    For example Bill Frisell tours very intensively... I believe in the scope of the whole world his potential audience is much smaller than that of Broom...

    But at the same time in some college campus - who knows? - it is possible that Bill would attract more people.

    If you look at the venues where he plays it is very often very modest chamber-style places in remote parts of the States - it is really for quiete contemplative audience, not for a cocktail club soft jazz dancing.

    I believe that Bill does not earn huge money with that but still he is on the road all the time in contact with live performance and live audience (which he obviously enjoys)

    What I am trying to say is that probably correct management of your ampitions is also very important, especially in this ever changing world.

    Bobby says that according to billboard and statistics from streamimg there are quite a lot of people who like and listen to this music, maybe the good move for a good manager is to find out who are these people and where they live and go to listen to music.
    I am not sure of course... but maybe it is time also to break a barrier too... maybe people who wants to listen to him just go to different places?
    Maybe today it's the same people who listen to Bill Frisell with Petra Haden?

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  3. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    I just came to the point that I probably live in a world on my own.. in the past I tried to be curious/tolerant about people and their opinions and so on... now I do not care. If idiots are idionts it is their life. But in modern world everyone has the right to be an idiot, but no-one can tell him about it .. so some people I know seem to begin to think I am almost a fascist... so I have to keep the mouth shut.

    but in general it is what I fell like...
    even if there are only 8-10 people in that world of mine - it is big enough and I do not care what other millions do (unless they start shooting at me or my family)...

    I have a friend - probably greatest living composer now - he is older than me, about 50 now (a family man, quite active socially, not just meditating artistic hermit) - in my opinion he does unique things, he is being performed of course, not totally neglected... but in comparison to what it deserves it is nothing...

    He lives in another city but we communicate all the time... he says that last year he is mostly in two conditions: suddenly and briefly excited (mostly it is about experiencing music - not all, or arts), and the rest of the time almost asleep (physically because he is terribly tired mostly)...

    It seems I amd getting close to this condition gradually too...

    But it's another topic maybe)
    That's sad to hear. I would say if it's one thing I've noticed about the Russian people I have met and worked for it's a deep reverence for Art and music. While I don't pretend to understand the complexities of contemporary Russia (I've never visited even), I do get that impression that has changed.

    Anyway, I feel the UK has always had a bit of philistine attitude to instrumental music, so I'm used to it...

  4. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    I also thought maybe it depends on the player's (his manager's) strategy too... and how he can coordicate his ambition for gigs and the market demand.

    Bobby Broom and his group are very subtle and sophisticated players but at the same time they have quite conventional format.. they can have bigger audience and probably are eager to have it, an dprobably try to look in the places they think appropriate for that.

    I am subscribed on FB to some guitarists' pages (like Frisell, Lage, Lund, Sco etc) and I get notifications.

    For example Bill Frisell tours very intensively... I believe in the scope of the whole world his potential audience is much smaller than that of Broom...

    But at the same time in some college campus - who knows? - it is possible that Bill would attract more people.

    If you look at the venues where he plays it is very often very modest chamber-style places in remote parts of the States - it is really for quiete contemplative audience, not for a cocktail club soft jazz dancing.

    I believe that Bill does not earn huge money with that but still he is on the road all the time in contact with live performance and live audience (which he obviously enjoys)

    What I am trying to say is that probably correct management of your ampitions is also very important, especially in this ever changing world.
    It's really best to have no expectations.

    However, when you hear of people you think should be doing well not doing well, it's sobering. Audiences and tastes change, of course, but there's just less money now.

    Cultivating a direct relationship with the audience is the easiest way to cut out the middle men and take control of your career. It does require a widening of one's skill set...

    Bobby says that according to billboard and statistics from streamimg there are quite a lot of people who like and listen to this music, maybe the good move for a good manager is to find out who are these people and where they live and go to listen to music.
    Absolutely

    Good managers are worth their weight in HP ink (had to buy new cartridges the other day)

    A lot of people are stuck in the old model.

    You Tube is huge of course, as well... Only problem with You Tube is you can't reliably monetise it if you are a musician (due to copyright strikes, YT shifting the goalposts and so on). Patreon offers an alternative source of income, but it's not truly passive as you then you owe people a regular stream of content.

    I am not sure of course... but maybe it is time also to break a barrier too... maybe people who wants to listen to him just go to different places?
    Maybe today it's the same people who listen to Bill Frisell with Petra Haden?
    Well I played my dad some recent Frisell and he thought it very middle of the road.

    Which it kind of is. I prefer him as a sideman in some ways. But I think Bill just likes playing songs he likes.

    That said, I'd sign up to hear Bill play the collected ouvre of Ed Sheeran... I'm not sure who goes to his gigs. I do know he's one of the few 'jazz guitarists' I could play to anybody.

  5. #54

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    Well I played my dad some recent Frisell and he thought it very middle of the road.

    Which it kind of is. I prefer him as a sideman in some ways. But I think Bill just likes playing songs he likes.

    That said, I'd sign up to hear Bill play the collected ouvre of Ed Sheeran... I'm not sure who goes to his gigs. I do know he's one of the few 'jazz guitarists' I could play to anybody
    It's very interesting... because I really prefer Bill when he is alone or a leader in a very small set like a duo for example.
    Sometimes I have feeling from him- that he takes a too much pop-stuff and - if it is appropriate to say so - overloads it with meaning in performance and concentration as if it is Bach or Mozart (but it is not even if you play it in the most meditative way ever). It reminds me American realism in painting.. it has the mood and it captures but then I feel like that is it, only the mood.
    But Bill is very authentic and unpretenciosu in doing this of course.
    And in generalI learnt a lot from him in concern of guitar playing.

    But anyway I just gave Bill here as an example... of something very different, opposite to Bobby - potentially not much in demand - but at the same time intensively touring almost non-stop.

  6. #55

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    That's sad to hear. I would say if it's one thing I've noticed about the Russian people I have met and worked for it's a deep reverence for Art and music. While I don't pretend to understand the complexities of contemporary Russia (I've never visited even), I do get that impression that has changed.
    Yes, it changed definitely during last 20 years... besides I grew up and lived in St. Petersburg without going much into the country (and without much wish to go, even to Moscow)... and St.Petersburg is not really Russia frankly speaking.

    But it's not the point even...
    I think today 'urban people' become more or less a special nation in most of the world. People coming and working in big metropolis like London, St.Petersburg, Paris, Moscow, Madrid.. they share more common features with each other than with their countrymen in the countryside.

    When I was a kid I remember a situation in a tram when a lady jumped in a tram and began to talk loudly with her friend.
    And there was a very an old lady sitting who turned and very politely said: 'My dear, could please spek a little bit lower, you are in St.Petersburg'
    It was not pretencious, and it really reflected the special spirit that the city once had.
    I still caught (but also mostly as an exception)... modern young people don't any more.

  7. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    It's really best to have no expectations.
    However, when you hear of people you think should be doing well not doing well, it's sobering. Audiences and tastes change, of course, but there's just less money now.
    I definitely agree, but, this interview with Bill is really interesting:

    http://www.5049records.com/podcast/bill-frisell

    In the 80s and probably 90s, Bill was barely scraping by, he mentions in this podcast his wife was working day jobs and he was taking any gig he could get, they always lived in NJ instead of NYC because it was cheaper, etc. It's awesome Bill has had such a successful career since, but this kind of life has never been a picnic for anyone.

    I am not saying the current climate is not bad, just pointing out that there are always struggles.

  8. #57

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    Bill is blessed to have the wife who is also his personal manager. I think Sco in the same situation.

    It's hard to underestimate the role of a good partner in musicians life. Where would we be without our gf or wives?

  9. #58

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hep To The Jive View Post
    Bill is blessed to have the wife who is also his personal manager. I think Sco in the same situation.

    It's hard to underestimate the role of a good partner in musicians life. Where would we be without our gf or wives?
    Amen to that.

  10. #59

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    A friend of mine is pursuing a career in conducting. He's got a phd in music and everything. He once told me that his true passion was composition. I asked then why he went down the conducting path. He said there's no money in composition.
    What a sellout lol.
    Some people desperately need financial advice.
    Last edited by Tal_175; 07-27-2019 at 09:47 PM.

  11. #60

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    Thanks to this thread I listened more to Bobby Broom (I am afraid though he did not earn much more from that (((( though I use only official payable resources or youtube subscriptions).
    He is such a sophisticated player... such an old school warmth in his playing, such a human conversational phrasing in lines.


    I definitely agree, but, this interview with Bill is really interesting:

    Episode 111, Bill Frisell — 5049 Records

    In the 80s and probably 90s, Bill was barely scraping by, he mentions in this podcast his wife was working day jobs and he was taking any gig he could get, they always lived in NJ instead of NYC because it was cheaper, etc. It's awesome Bill has had such a successful career since, but this kind of life has never been a picnic for anyone.
    I put it on yeterday late at night while doing some home stuff... it is always interesting to hear Bill talk - he has very intimate and inmidiate style of conversation. THough I heard most of the fact before it was really great to listent to it again in such nice 'table talk'.

    By the way.. dose anybody know if it is possible to buy the film "The Portrait' about him in some kind of other form than purchasing a DVD?
    It is really too expensive to order a CD form States here... I have a friend in teh States who come here once or twice a year so he brings me some things like that but I do not know when he comes really.

  12. #61

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonah View Post
    I put it on yeterday late at night while doing some home stuff... it is always interesting to hear Bill talk - he has very intimate and inmidiate style of conversation. THough I heard most of the fact before it was really great to listent to it again in such nice 'table talk'.

    By the way.. dose anybody know if it is possible to buy the film "The Portrait' about him in some kind of other form than purchasing a DVD?
    It is really too expensive to order a CD form States here... I have a friend in teh States who come here once or twice a year so he brings me some things like that but I do not know when he comes really.
    Digital streaming rental here: Watch Bill Frisell, A Portrait Online | Vimeo On Demand on Vimeo

    London Jazz Guitar Society:
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    LJGS on Twitter: www.twitter.com/LDNJazzGuitar

  13. #62

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    Quote Originally Posted by David B View Post
    Thank you!
    not available for Russia unfortunately. But I asked Emma in a message, maybe she would advise another option.

  14. #63

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    Great thread!

    People seem to reduce everything down to black & white - oh it's talent OR luck.

    Anyone working in music realises it's BOTH.
    I'd agree - it's both but it's also about networks. I just finished a book called "The Formula" which talks about all of this and how in anything with an element of subjectivity (the book uses modern art but the same applies to jazz musicians), success is partly about your networks e.g. "it's not what you know, it's who you know".

    Bobby mentioned selling out Ronnies, but he probably didn't have the personal connections to get to other venues in the UK or Europe to make that visit worthwhile. And yet there are a decent number of venues and festivals across Europe that I'm sure would be happy to book (and pay!) a player of his calibre. It probably helps to know the organizers though.

  15. #64

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  16. #65

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    He can teach during the day and play in Chicago at night. Not bad at all.

  17. #66

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    Quote Originally Posted by xavriley View Post
    Great thread!



    I'd agree - it's both but it's also about networks. I just finished a book called "The Formula" which talks about all of this and how in anything with an element of subjectivity (the book uses modern art but the same applies to jazz musicians), success is partly about your networks e.g. "it's not what you know, it's who you know".

    Bobby mentioned selling out Ronnies, but he probably didn't have the personal connections to get to other venues in the UK or Europe to make that visit worthwhile. And yet there are a decent number of venues and festivals across Europe that I'm sure would be happy to book (and pay!) a player of his calibre. It probably helps to know the organizers though.
    This is very much the case...

  18. #67
    Quote Originally Posted by christianm77 View Post
    The players all have jazz degrees. Many of them can even play jazz pretty well (although they are not Bobby)
    not sure that's true. I know many with no degree

  19. #68

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    Quote Originally Posted by xavriley View Post
    I'd agree - it's both but it's also about networks.
    This is pretty much verbatim what Mike Moreno told me.
    He was already playing at a high level when he left Houston for New York. He didn’t need to go to New School so that someone could teach him how to play. he went there to build networks and it was a great place for him to try out new music, compositions and arrangements he was working on. It would be pretty good to have someone like Kendrick Scott to play with at school everyday.

  20. #69

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jazzism View Post
    This is pretty much verbatim what Mike Moreno told me.
    He was already playing at a high level when he left Houston for New York. He didn’t need to go to New School so that someone could teach him how to play. he went there to build networks and it was a great place for him to try out new music, compositions and arrangements he was working on. It would be pretty good to have someone like Kendrick Scott to play with at school everyday.
    I went to the New School at the same time as Mike and he definitely played great straight out of high school. Of course, he went to HS with Robert Glasper, Alan Hampton, Reggie Quinerly, and a bunch of other really great players.

    Jazz school is primarily about networking, IMO. You go to school, hopefully meet people and play with them and form bonds and such, and you keep playing with those folks throughout your life. It also gives you some time where you aren't just working jobs and scuffling to get by.

  21. #70
    Plus something to fall back on later in life. A lot harder to teach on a college/University level even for a recording artist without a bachelor or Masters nowadays..

  22. #71

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    I enjoyed reading this thread. Thank you all.

  23. #72

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    The open letter by Bobby Broom is another classic example of the death of the Arts in the United States and the very real prospect of not being able to work full-time as a Jazzer. This,also, is the case with most Classical musicians. When young people begin the study of Music, they should not be misled by their teachers that a career in Music performance is a real possibility as a full-time profession(unless they teach) and that only a select few in the entire country will be able to fulfill their dreams. I performed regularly in Chicago during the 60's and 70's(saxophone, flute, guitar) and soon realized that the bleak scenario was real and retooled my life away from music for a more stable lifestyle. I continued to play, casually, throughout the years with a few jobs ,here and there, but have not returned to music full-time until now that I have retired. This was a deep-felt confession by Bobby and reflects the sad reality of serious music in America. Good playing . . . Marinero

  24. #73

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    Let's just say it Real Music as we grew up with is basically DEAD! And although it is still available to listen to for free,there is really nothing now replacing it.
    When real musicians can no longer earn a basic living,and content is free we are simply left with what is the current entertainment.
    I constantly am told there is new content.And that may be true,but is it of the past quality. I feel really sad for Bobby Broom and his compatriots. When musicians this good can no longer earn a living it says a lot about the public's taste in music.

  25. #74

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    Any jazz musician can end up with 1 million dollars in his/her pocket. You do need to have very good chops, impeccable time feel, solid repertoire and 2 million dollars.
    Last edited by Tal_175; 09-01-2019 at 01:35 PM.
    It takes a pretty good drummer to be better than no drummer at all. -- Chet Baker

  26. #75

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    I shall be telling this with a sigh
    Somewhere ages and ages hence:
    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference.
    Robert Frost (1874–1963), The Road Not Taken


    When I started teaching myself to play the guitar 50 years ago:

    - I had no illusions of becoming a rich and famous recording and performing musician
    - I did not expect to ever perform, tour, or do studio work
    - I did not anticipate ever playing in a band with others
    - I did not even have a strong feeling that I would ever learn the instrument

    What I did know is that I loved playing the guitar for its own sake. I had no lessons, or method books, or any schedule of progress milestones. I was not in a hurry because I just liked playing; kind of like someone who gets a new car and discovers that they really enjoy driving, not rushing from point A to point B as fast as possible as if they detested any time spent in the car.

    This is why:

    - I was happy with my $29 solid body and no amp for the first six years
    - I was a bedroom player for the first 20 years, unheard by anyone
    - I freely explored every kind of music
    - I peculiarly agreed to an offer to sit in with a jazz band one night (my first time playing with a band; they had me up all night, then asked me to sit in with them, two nights a week for about 12 weeks, after which they moved on to the next city in their circuit and left me wondering if maybe I might be able to play in bands after all!?)

    Since then I played in many bands (usually two or three at the same time), accumulated well over 10K hours of stage performance, and continue to perform regularly; in fact I need to prepare for a couple of shows this evening and tomorrow (brunch) with my jazz trio.

    My point is that the gradient for me has been of increasing opportunity and satisfaction... because I did not plan, anticipate, or expect anything to happen.

    I have a sense that most people did it the other way:

    - being in a hurry, so loading a schedule against lessons, method books, progress milestones, keeping track of how many songs learned, how well this and number of that
    - planning to perform, play in bands, have the right gear, and learn what will need to be known
    - thinking along the lines of possibly being a professional musician
    - similar goal oriented focus forward

    It would not surprise me that many would feel disappointment from experiencing a continuous confrontation with reality, a path of retractions, diminishing expectations, and anxious frustrations with uncomfortable changes happening in the music scene over the years.
    "Bent my ear to hear the tune and closed my eyes to see."

  27. #76

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    Quote Originally Posted by pauln View Post
    I shall be telling this with a sigh
    Somewhere ages and ages hence:
    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference.
    Robert Frost (1874–1963), The Road Not Taken


    When I started teaching myself to play the guitar 50 years ago:

    - I had no illusions of becoming a rich and famous recording and performing musician
    - I did not expect to ever perform, tour, or do studio work
    - I did not anticipate ever playing in a band with others
    - I did not even have a strong feeling that I would ever learn the instrument

    What I did know is that I loved playing the guitar for its own sake. I had no lessons, or method books, or any schedule of progress milestones. I was not in a hurry because I just liked playing; kind of like someone who gets a new car and discovers that they really enjoy driving, not rushing from point A to point B as fast as possible as if they detested any time spent in the car.

    This is why:

    - I was happy with my $29 solid body and no amp for the first six years
    - I was a bedroom player for the first 20 years, unheard by anyone
    - I freely explored every kind of music
    - I peculiarly agreed to an offer to sit in with a jazz band one night (my first time playing with a band; they had me up all night, then asked me to sit in with them, two nights a week for about 12 weeks, after which they moved on to the next city in their circuit and left me wondering if maybe I might be able to play in bands after all!?)

    Since then I played in many bands (usually two or three at the same time), accumulated well over 10K hours of stage performance, and continue to perform regularly; in fact I need to prepare for a couple of shows this evening and tomorrow (brunch) with my jazz trio.

    My point is that the gradient for me has been of increasing opportunity and satisfaction... because I did not plan, anticipate, or expect anything to happen.

    I have a sense that most people did it the other way:

    - being in a hurry, so loading a schedule against lessons, method books, progress milestones, keeping track of how many songs learned, how well this and number of that
    - planning to perform, play in bands, have the right gear, and learn what will need to be known
    - thinking along the lines of possibly being a professional musician
    - similar goal oriented focus forward

    It would not surprise me that many would feel disappointment from experiencing a continuous confrontation with reality, a path of retractions, diminishing expectations, and anxious frustrations with uncomfortable changes happening in the music scene over the years.
    Inspiring words. It’s all about the journey :-)

  28. #77

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    In case you thought Classical music was better off...

    Strike with the Band | Kate Wagner

  29. #78

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    Quote Originally Posted by docsteve View Post
    In case you thought Classical music was better off...

    Strike with the Band | Kate Wagner
    I have no sympathy for classical orchestra musicians, there are very, very few instances in the US where pro performances aren't heavily subsidized by local, state, or federal gov't. If only jazz musicians had that kind of support. Classical music hasn't really stood on it's own strengths for a century.

  30. #79

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    Quote Originally Posted by cosmic gumbo View Post
    I have no sympathy for classical orchestra musicians, there are very, very few instances in the US where pro performances aren't heavily subsidized by local, state, or federal gov't. If only jazz musicians had that kind of support. Classical music hasn't really stood on it's own strengths for a century.

    Classical music never was in the open market (except operatic enterprises of 18th -19th century that in some Wuropean countries - except France - depended directly on the income from sales).

    All the rest was mostly paid by the church or rich patrons. It did not depend on how many people would buy tickets, it did not bring profit as did regular commerce and banking.
    And it is more or less similar to today's support from goverment, universities, funds etc. Good musicians and writers gather around Universities and Academies having different honourable degrees and positions like Writer in residence or Poet Laureat... which often (not always) means just that they are supported, paid some salary for their artistic achievents (of course some of them can be really good full time teachers but mostly this is very formal).

    One of the problem I see today with jazz that it came from commercial industry originally (especially considering it was US where the open market realtionship, sales, profitablity were very important part of mentality)... and it seems that they believe that one can just sell good music in the open market - and it seems they think it has always been like that. But it was not like that. Actully never.

    There were some great American non-jazz musicians... fro example Charles Ives is one my favousrite composers ever - and he had successful insuarance business, Morton Feldman if I remember correctle had some carpet business... this kind of music was never marketable at all - especially in the country like America - they never really thought they would earn living from it...

    Every exception - like Philippe Glass - meant crossover or interaction with pop-music... or good marketing of his art as Pop-art...

    Wha t I am trying to say that things change... ecomomics change.

    Jordi Savall - one of the most succeful commercially serious classicl musician of our days probably- also reacted recently on the problem with earning from concerts and recording: he said openly and clearly that real art should not be paid depending on profitablity, it should be paid and supported just becasue it exists. That is it.

    As for jazz.. there is one difficulty with it.. part od its authencity is connected with indepndednt commercial club form. In some saence going under goverment support, into academies and universities kills some part of this independencs spirit...
    The same concerns rock...
    I can hardly imagine characters like Bird or Jim Morrison prosper under some University support...

  31. #80

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    I hope that his position at the university has afforded him some financial stability.

    Maybe not pertaining to Bobby Broom, but the one thing that I see that most successful artists pursue regardless of the reception is productivity. Like massive productivity. They are driven to promote themselves through the work that they can do. More than one successful painter has filled up a museum.