I know it can be hard to keep trying to achieve a dream without seeing any success, so here’s a personal story to help you keep at it.
Along my journey I’ve picked up so many skills trying to “figure it all out”, that I’ve grown as a person; in, and outside of music.
Specifically, one of those skills was getting out of my comfort zone.
Generally speaking, I’m a pretty introverted person. I actually used to cherish the fact that awkward silences didn’t bother me, but as I’ve learned the importance of networking, I know it’s not about me and my comfort, but about the value and relationship I’m providing to others.
I have to be willing to be that extrovert, especially if my number one goal is to GET NOTICED.
This past weekend, my effort to be extroverted and get noticed finally paid off a little.
As I’m sure you have learned by now, picking up a new skill isn’t as easy as it seems, and often, you have to learn something else before you learn how to do what you wanted do in the first place.
For producing, one of the not necessary, but helpful skills to know, is being able to play the piano.
Because of this, I decided to start taking piano lessons. (It actually ended up being the same place I went when I was around 6 years old. It’s crazy how life is cyclical like that)
Short story even shorter, a few months later, the business was sold to a gentleman by the name of Anthony Mitchell.
Naturally being a little skeptical/curious about the eventual changes, I talked with the previous owner about this new guy’s background. She said he had a lot of experience in production and recording “in the industry”, so you know me…I was All…About It.
Once he arrived, one of our first conversations went over the fact he wanted to transition this primarily instrument/vocal lesson school, into a full fledged recording arts school…music engineering lessons and all!
As a little background, I already take engineering lessons at another studio…but hey… what’s one more, right!?
Remember earlier I said my job was to GET NOTICED, so I made sure to let him know everything I had going on, and dropped some of those trigger words to let him know I knew what I was talking about….
“Oh yea I love using compression on my snares with a long release to bring out the tail…” haha
Yea it was a stretch…but we actually had a good conversation, even going into the recording techniques of D’Angelo’s Black Messiah (great CD btw).
Fast forward about a month and a half…
Different schedules, vacations, and whatever else, led us to not crossing paths…until this past weekend.
I have to be truthful at this point. As much as I harped on being an extrovert and going out of your way to be known…I reverted back to my old ways.
I was about 10 mins early for my lesson, so as per usual I sat in the waiting room, but unlike before, I just sat there…silent.
On the inside, since I hadn’t heard anything more about the music engineering class, I was beginning to think it wasn’t going to happen, or at least any time soon.
Still, I realize now that I should’ve gone about it in a different way, and spoke up more.
Either way, once it was time for my lesson I walked into the room not saying anything more than “hi.”
I had my lesson
…but as I was about to walk out the front door to leave, I heard Anthony call out, “Hey Trent, come here, I want to show you something.”
I proceeded to walk into the next room over and was amazed to see a full soundboard, monitors, and dual screens with Pro Tools loaded up ready to go!
I mean it wasn’t anything too crazy, but just seeing that soundboard made it seem “professional”.
He then told me the lessons were gonna get started soon, and wahh wahh wahh…
(I think I zoned out a little at this point, but only because I was thinking about the possiblities..)
but what happened next is why I NEEDED to write this blog post.
After chopping it up for a little bit he said,
“I’m going to train you…free of charge…so you can start teaching the class…”
I’m thinking, “so you’re telling me I don’t have to pay for lessons…I get trained by someone who’s ‘in the business’, AND I can end up making money from this..”
To wrap things up and put a nice bow on it, first off thank you for reading through this story.
I also want you to know that I’m in the same boat you are. We’re all trying to make something of ourselves, and sometimes it’s hard, and that makes it sooo important to acknowledge the little successes that come along the way.
Hopefully, if you’re at a point where things just seem to not move like you want, or think they should be moving, know that it’s only a matter of time.
Running water will erode mountains…
Thanks again, and if you enjoyed this story, please sign up to my newsletter HERE, and as a gift for signing up, I’m sending you a spreadsheet to see
If you’ve ever wondered how many song plays you needed to get in order to make $50k, $100k…$1 million…then check it out and see for yourself!