Music Is the Bare Minimum

First Things First...

When you are starting your journey as an independent music artist, you have to ask yourself, “Who am I?” Are you a hobby artist, or are you a professional recording artist?

A hobby artist is someone who’s just focused on making music and expressing themselves. Usually, they spend the minimum amount, if any, money towards releasing their music. They use platforms like Soundcloud, Bandcamp, or Rapchat to create songs and post them. Their dream is to one day be discovered and to “blow up” and get signed by a label. Yet the artist is not planning or spending money towards that goal. It’s more of a dream.

On the other hand, professional recording artists work towards building their business around their music. Music is the product, but they understand marketing via content creation or marketing dollars that are spent to push a record. They spend a lot of time building a relationship with their audience or strategizing on ways to build an audience. 

At one point, most artists have been hobby artists, but there comes a time where you figure out who you are. You either accept you are a hobby artist, or you become a business. The truth is most creatives just want to create music and have a good time doing it, and there is nothing wrong with that. However, the next level takes work. You have to play the game.

What's The Game?
In 2020 I kept telling my audience and everyone online that if you don’t create your business or brand, it’s going to be hard moving forward. Some people got it, others wanted to argue with me, but here we heading into 2024, and the game has changed. The market is correcting, and now it’s pay to play. The lick is over!

In 2020 – 2023 there was emerging technology, and money/attention was free. People were bored at home and had nothing but time and money to spend. If you started a TikTok, YouTube, or Twitch, most likely you saw growth as long as you were consistent. If you did spend marketing dollars, it was much easier to track your audience and target your music to the right people. Everything has changed at this point.

If you noticed, most of the free platforms are transitioning to a paid platform. Even news websites require a membership to read. The game has changed. It’s going to take money to make money in 2024 and beyond. If you are a professional artist and content has been your wave, it may be time to put a budget together to market your content.

Music Is The Bare Minimum

Now that we have some type of clarity of the artist you are and what the current market is, let’s talk about ways to move forward.

If you are just starting to make songs, then have fun and pick a platform to grow on like YouTube, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, and etc. Your goal should be to learn to record yourself, and you need to record every single day. You need those 10,000 hours to really sound confident and develop your ears.

There are plenty of resources on YouTube to build your recording setup. You can always become an ELITE MEMBER on (300 beats a month for 49 bucks) if you need instrumentals. This is your first step. Once you have decided you want to turn this into a career, then it’s time to go to step 2.

Step 2:
Now it’s time to do business, and this is the part that usually weeds out the ones that will make it or not. Moving forward, you have to look at the business side of music and find creative enjoyment in marketing and/or content creation. Most people who get to this point learn that you can’t just focus on music anymore, and sometimes this point causes creative blocks.

It’s hard to jump from the right brain to the left brain and be consistent. However, if you do what needs to be done and not allow your emotions to take over, YOU WILL BE SUCCESSFUL. Everybody wants to hand off the responsibilities, but until you have the budget to hire a team, you have to balance both music and business.


One of the hardest lessons I’ve learned is that the market tells you what’s good or not. Most of the beats I really love that I spend the most time on are not my biggest beats or sell the most. It’s usually the beats that are simple and take no time to make because they are digestible.

The ears of music listeners have been trained over a course of time. If your music doesn’t fit into that box then its hard for them to digest. You need to know this so that you can understand how to market your sound.

I’m hard-headed when it comes to my music. I love making my audience uncomfortable and putting out dfrnt  types of sounds. I could be “bigger” if I just made the same type of simple beats over and over again, but I won’t be able sleep at night. So I’ve learned to find a balance, and you will run into the same thing one day.

You have to decide if you want to make the music you want and accept that it may not be the biggest hit. Or the alternative, you create what’s digestible to the market. This is when your integrity comes to the forefront and your ego can easily get in the way of your success. Hopefully, they want what you love to create.

We are going to dive deeper into marketing, but I really want you to sit with yourself. What type of artist are you and/or who is your targeted audience? Have that info ready for the next post.

Thanks for reading

Join the "Artists Marketing Series" by Epik The Dawn
enter your number & we will text with the next post. Opt out at anytime.
Something went wrong. Please check your mobile and try again.
Phone number is not valid.

Recommended Posts