“I can’t make this work. It’s too hard. It’s too complicated. And there are too many other people doing a lot better stuff.”
Jules is 21 years old. His daddy’s rich (at least he would be rich if he lived in, say, Pakistan) and his momma’s good looking. But Jules is worried. He recently graduated from college and has decided to begin a career in music. He has begun a band, called “Royal Native,” and has produced an album. All who have heard it are impressed. But the challenge of turning a pair of talented young musicians into a going, moneymaking concern is daunting. Almost overwhelming.
“There are just so many groups doing similar things,” Jules continued. “They’re all on the Internet, just like we are. And many of them are very good. And I don’t know how to distinguish what we’re doing from what they’re doing. We’re not really ‘better.’ And we don’t really have a unique sound.
“You can’t make a go of it on the Internet alone. You have to perform. I can perform…but only the country/folk stuff. And that’s just not going to take us anywhere…because everybody does it. Our new sound is ‘techfolk’…it’s good, but it’s done in the studio…you can’t do it on stage. So you can’t perform. And if you can’t perform your stuff, you might as well give up because you’ll never get the ‘buzz’ you need to stand out.
“And there are so many things I just don’t know how to do… So much of this is marketing. I don’t know anything about marketing. And what can I market? You need something unique. We don’t have anything unique. We’re just trying to come up with good music…and that’s hard enough…
“I think I’m going to give up. It’s too hard. I’ll never be able to do it. Besides, all I really want in life is a house in the suburbs, a nice, blonde wife…and a job where I don’t have to work too hard.”
We had to pause and think. What to say to a young man who is just starting out…and who realizes what he is up against?
Father-knows-best had this advice:
“Jules…look…you’ve got a long road ahead. This is no time to worry. You’re not supposed to know how things work…or how to get where you’re going. Life is a long hike. It is as if you were walking from Baltimore to Los Angeles. It doesn’t really matter which way you turn when you go out the front door. The important thing is just to keep walking. You’ll have plenty of time to correct your course.”
Until next time,
for Markets and Money