Chasing “fame and fortune” in the Music Industry

A recent Facebook posting about Buffalo Springfield’s founding in 1966 brought to mind a few things I’ve always felt about achieving so-called “fame and fortune” in the Music Industry.

As a long-time full-time, part-time and now casual professional musician since 1966, and a keen observer of the music scene, I offer up these comments for your consideration. Take from them what you will.

First, you must have Talent with a capital T. All the fancy websites, Facebook pages, flashy PR and promo merchandise in the world will only get you so far. If you don’t have the goods, you will likely have limited, short-term success.

Second, as they say, “It’s all about timing.” Being in the right place, with the right people, at the right time will probably go far in helping you achieve a modicum of “fame and fortune” and the respect and recognition of your peers and general public. BTW, these factors were very evident in the founding and, if only short-lived, success of Buffalo Springfield.

Third, a good deal of personal humility is probably a good thing, especially when you are first starting out. There are lots of “Legends in Their Own Minds” around blaming everyone else but themselves for their lack of success.

Fourth, perseverance is a quality which will probably help you achieve whatever level of success you are aiming for. Don’t throw in the towel too early. Most reputable, well known musicians were not overnight successes. They had to pay their dues, put in their time in lousy bars, etc. On the other hand, know when to call it a career when it’s time.

I knew that it was time to for me come off the road and pursue a teaching degree in the mid-1970s. Since then, I have had no regrets following a successful and highly satisfying 30 year career teaching high school History.

And finally, let’s face it, some good old-fashioned luck will probably play itself into the “fame and fortune” equation.

Just some musings from an aging 1960s hippie musician.

I welcome any Comments you may have.

Rick Young, March 3, 2019

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