Music Tip #10: Mentor Yourself; Don't Wait to Be a Protege
People tell me all the time, "I want to be this person's protege." "I want to be mentored by this producer/film score composer." This singer.
Guess how many other people want that? Go on Twitter and search through the amount of singers, rappers, producers, DJs, and composers. I'd estimate at least 50,000 people on there or more list some kind of music in their short about me's.
I get it. Often, people are introduced to the world musically by a well known person taking him/her under their wing.
You may take years or over a decade for being mentored by your dream person. Or, it may never happen and you one day become the person mentoring others. You need to be ready to accept this and not focus so much on winding up being mentored.
You can access books, YouTube, advice on websites like mine, music lessons, practicing in your bedroom, and library books all for free to cheap with technology. Please focus on this. People worry too much about meeting someone.
You'll find a few people will talk to you within the music industry and the rest are very guarded by gatekeepers. The gatekeepers will not want you in their cliques because they are always either A, the people who have no intentions of being in the industry themselves and love feeding off the attention bragging they're someone's personal assistant/employee, or B, the people who take on office jobs because they think one day they'll be in the shoes of the person they work for. The latter does not always happen. Some people remain permanent secretaries and/or staffers.
These people do not want to see someone else succeed. They often micromanage their boss' day to day tasks. I hope to always be someone who uses my own social media accounts and know of people who do. I'm warning you here, most people you see online writing on social media you probably want to meet have their publicist's interns running their accounts or work with social media managers. You're not going to meet them. Which is not to say you will never be contacted because someone who doesn't run his/her own socials saw you on social media on an anonymous/private/nicknamed social account and thinks you're cool. I sure have been. People might send a DM or send me a note on my website inbox. What I mean is, it's usually not the other way around. Look at what the people you see in the music industry are writing and be suspicious when the thread is them talking to themselves. When you think you're writing to him/her, you're writing someone else. He/she will never see what you wrote. They may someday be impressed by your enthusiasm/music/anything. They will not know about it until you are sure of meeting them somehow, some way, someday.
Or, you could meet someone and find they treat you like a turnip stealing peasant. I can tell you some people who are not the most approachable who are very professional and some who are not. As far as meeting people online, I struggle thinking up a list of people handling their own social media accounts.
Do not wait around to gain skills and knowledge. You might not get anywhere. And, you need to be polishing your musicality to get attention from people you want it from.
A mini tip. Allow people to help you when they want to do so. Network with people within the music industry and don't ask for anything in return. You gain knowledge by talking to them or laugh about normal life. DO NOT ASK THEM FOR A THING BECAUSE IT IS LIKE A STRANGER ASKING YOU FOR MONEY FOR NO REASON. At some point, whoever wants to help you will, or your fate will land you in the position where you meet someone by chance who helps you.