Work the MIC (Music Industrial Complex) is a collection of lessons learned through my failures as a musician. Ever since I started writing, performing, and recording music, I've often wished that there was someone over my shoulder telling me what not to do. Failure is a great way to learn, but learning from the failures of others is probably the best way to learn.
Now that I've got a decent failure pile of my own, I want to offer what knowledge I've acquired to those people who are starting their music journey, whether they're 17 and playing in their first garage band, or 64 and playing Jimmy Buffet covers at a dive bar for extra cash.
Are there other more knowledgeable musicians out there who could give you better advice? Yes, and if you get the chance to talk to them, or read their books and posts, you should. I'm just trying to contribute what I've learned to the music community.
People often refer to the "Music Industry." That implies that there is a system out there that is producing music. That is a misnomer. Artists produce music. They don't need anyone to help them do that. An entirely separate system has sprung up around those musicians: record labels, venues, social media, producers, marketers, managers... these people do not make music. They make money. More accurately, they take money from musicians (the people who make the music).
If you want to make music, go make it. Sing. Play an instrument. Get a pad and paper, download a note-taking app, and record your music if you like. Play a show if you've got the balls, or if you think you have talent. But, if you want to be a "serious musician" to the point where you make money or recruit fans, let me help you save some of the time, money, and energy that I've lost.
I was a vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter in a "serious" original band from 2006-2017. We played gigs throughout New Jersey, New York, Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Our music was featured on regional radio, online radio platforms, in weddings, and blogs. A couple of our songs have been used in corporate videos, short films, and a feature film. I retired from live performance in 2017 to focus on writing and recording, and to spend more time with my son.
I've written the lyrics and music for approximately 10 albums (I've actually lost track at this point), and have produced 8 full-length albums, as well as an EP. I also wrote/co-wrote, engineered, produced, and mixed a year-long project where my band wrote, recorded, and released a new song each month for a year.
I was part of a small songwriter's collective from 2010-2015. We wrote approximately two albums' worth of material.
I played multiple instruments in church bands from 1998 through 2011.
I've worked as a "sound guy" for original bands, cover bands, bars, corporate events, and churches.
I've done audio work (Foley and ADR) for a couple of video projects.