Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomkristan/6791850604/

Musician. Stop networking! Today. Start learning instead.

Tired of the wrong culture musicians are pursuing.

This article appeared on MicControl.

I come from Greece, live in London and love traveling around the world, being currently in Malaysia and Singapore.

It’s funny what you can realize once you get yourself out of the routine of your ‘cultural water’. I borrow this expression from Derek Sivers’ article.

Once we’re immersed in our water, like Derek’s fish, we stop realizing what we condition ourselves to: we *choose* to connive and live conformative lives, getting in habit loops and hanging out with other people that confirm what we do.

Musicians: they meet like-minded musicians, they look for people that shoot cheap videos, play open-mic nights non-stop, network with other people, gossip about shitty bookers that f*cked them over.

C’mon. There’s more than that. Why immerse in an acid mud hole?

Why gossip. Are you sure you’re dealing with the right people?

Why shoot for cheap. Don’t you know that services have their price? And why shoot a video in the first place? What is the, ahem, strategic role of it in your career?

Why play open-mic nights. Yeah, I know. New fans are discovering your music. Really?

Why NETWORK. Are you ready to use all those contacts? You keep doing the same thing all the time! The last thing to do is to bring more people in your world to ‘help’.

Create something unique first. Please! If you don’t clean your house, don’t invite other people in.

This is what ‘emerging’ independent musicians do. Not in London. Not in Greece. Not in fucking Malaysia. Everywhere. And I’m sad, because I fell for the same trap, after living in London for 9 months non-stop to build my music business, Darker Music Talks.

Now in a cafe in Kuala Lumpur, I’m enjoying my new revelation. And I see every day that investing in knowledge is what musicians need to do. Filtered knowledge separates right from wrong and helps you have an opinion on your own on what the next step is. You won’t do what your friends or social circle tells you again.

Knowledge is the key. Don’t wonder why we go to school. Because we streamline our thoughts about life, filter information and get our shit together. A musician who still plays the small game never did that.

Do yourselves a favor and open a book. You might have the talent, but that’s not enough.

Apparent and ultimate truth only comes through knowledge and experience. And doing the same thing all the time expecting different results means you’re crazy.

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I love starting conversations. If you share the same mindset, find me on Facebook and Twitter and let’s talk!


Thanks a lot to:

The following people read early versions of this article and offered generously their feedback and corrections:

Michele Rubini

Vince Millett

Carol Mae Whittick

Remade the Band

Riccardo Andreotti

Nikos Pavlou

Jon Ostrow

Chris Roditis


I’m Tommy Darker, the writing alter ego of an imaginative independent musician. I started Think Beyond The Band’ because I feel proud of what I’ve accomplished so far and I like helping other fellow musicians that struggle with the same problems.