We most likely have a lot in common. I started making music because I was passionate about it. I spent time honing my craft, playing music with friends, and as I got older I wanted to figure out how to make a living in audio. Like many of you, I came into this industry at a time when it was deemed too saturated and too tough to make a living. 2012 to be exact (but really 2013). I unfortunately never got to experience the golden days of when it was easy to make a living making records. Can’t choose when we are born right?

I spent most of my life working normal jobs and making music on the side. But in 2012 I finally made the decision to try to make this my career. Although I had my doubts… I looked out and saw a ton of music producers who were making a living! Why couldn’t I?

I immediately started researching and trying to figure out what all of these successful people were doing. How were they different from me? How did they figure out? I noticed that most of them took a different route and “created their own opportunities”. I wanted to do the same! I wanted my own platform that attracts clients. I wanted to have my own products to sell. I wanted my own connections to pitch music to. I wanted to have control of my destiny! I had tried everything else and it didn’t work. I did the standard approach… Going to audio school but quickly dropped out. I tried internships and even though I learned A LOT, I still wasn’t able to make a living. I even uprooted my life and moved to Los Angeles. I thought that changing my location would fix the problem. But, unfortunately the studios out there didn’t need me. They already had their guys! I felt hopeless.

I also did what most of us do and try to record bands in my home studio. But, that didn’t work well either. I made “okay” money, but geography always seemed to be a problem. I was either in a town where there weren’t many bands or in a town where it was overly saturated. I also started to notice that bands in general were becoming less of a thing anyway (unless you’re into metal).

I had one last option to explore… The internet. In 2013, I officially launched my first company The Songwriting Team. We connect with clients online and get paid to produce, write, and mix music for them. Everyone from artists and bands to companies and film/tv agencies. I figured out that once you are able to attract clients online it was game on. In today’s world we have access to every musician around the globe who has an internet connection. No longer did I have to depend on connections, or where I lived, or any of the excuses I made to myself. This is a game of hard work and patience and as a few years went by we started getting larger clients and more often. We got to work with brands like Marriott, have our music purchased for TV shows, and even produced a Billboard charting record. Never did I think that one simple website would change my life and as I am writing this now (in 2017) I’ve done over half a million dollars in income just from my audio skills.

The best part about building a “platform” for your business is that once it’s put in place you can continue to build on it. I knew that The Songwriting Team wasn’t all I had in me and I had a desire to grow and expand. In 2014 I launched my next company, Anthemize.com. It’s the world’s first curated beat library that caters to pop and rock musicians with intuitive search functions and one simple flat-rate price. This was my first experience with owning an e-commerce site and I learned a lot from the experience. Most beat sites never take off. Anthemize did 5 figures in it’s first month, and that showed me that “saturation” isn’t the problem in our industry: Mediocrity is the problem. Not having a strategy is a problem. Shoot – I could have put up a $20/month beat website like everyone else, but investing thousands of dollars into a “platform” is what made Anthemize stand out over every other beat site.

So, at this point Anthemize and The Songwriting Team were going well. The income was consistent. This allowed me to be able to take advantage of other opportunities when they came up. One that comes to mind is my next e-commerce business called Woodshed Audio Co. Woodshed was a drum sample company created by a notable mixing engineer in Nashville, TN. The company launched  and did really well very quickly because the products were great and the owner had established relationships with blogs who could promote the products. I was intrigued and impressed with it. Eventually, the opportunity came up and I had the chance to purchase Woodshed Audio Co from the original owner. It was one of the best investments that I ever made. It made it’s money back in just 3 months. By 2016 I had three companies bringing in income.

Something changes when shit is working for you. All of the sudden you are in this new “category of the music business”. Although I never considered myself a big deal… people do treat you different. You have more authority and reputation. This leads to more people wanting to get involved with you and some of them will be worth teaming up with. In 2016 I combined Anthemize and Woodshed Audio, partnered with a friend, and put everything under our new brand, Make Pop Music. MPM is a resource for modern music creators and ultimately helps build awareness for my business partner and myself. Within a year MPM had thousands of Facebook group members, mailing list subscribers, and YouTube viewers.

When you run a business for a long period of time your passions will shift and change. I am excited that now I am able to work 1-on-1 with other music producers and help them build online businesses just like I did. It’s very rewarding getting to see others reach success!