How to Make It In the Music Industry In Your 20’s

Published on July 20, 2020

The music industry is one of the toughest and most rewarding industries a person can be in. It’s like riding a roller coaster that can land safely at its destination or derail while going 100 miles per hour. Nonetheless, it is the ride of a lifetime.

Although challenging, it is possible to make your dreams of becoming a musician come true in your 20’s. It is extremely important to believe in yourself, embrace your mistakes, and relentlessly market your work and promote yourself. 

We live in a world that constantly reminds us of our shortcomings. It happens while scrolling through social media and comparing ourselves to others who are further along in life, or when feeling defeated after someone rejects our work. Confidence is the most important element to making it in the music industry during your 20’s. Your musical abilities and natural gifts will certainly get your foot in the door, however, personality and self-assurance are what makes you stand out in a crowd of talented musicians. Record labels are searching for the total package. They want someone who is talented, charming, confident, and original. Therefore, aside from working on your music, it is also extremely important to work on the way that you present yourself.

Learn from mistakes and market yourself

Do not be afraid of making mistakes. Mistakes simply come with the territory. In fact, the more mistakes you make, the more seasoned you will become. The only mistake a person should be afraid of is taking their dreams and passions with them to the grave instead of pursuing them passionately during their lifetime. Freely experiment with different genres, sounds, and musical styles. The hours each day that you spend working on your music, creating catchy hooks, channeling your emotions and perspectives, and translating those emotions through your music, will all eventually pay off and lead you to an amazing producer who understands you, mentors you, and helps you bring your vision to life.

Promote yourself

The last and most difficult golden nugget of wisdom that I can provide in order to help you make it in the music industry during your 20’s, is to assertively market and promote your work. The renowned Stephen King once said: “Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.” Many musicians are extremely talented but only a few of them know how to persistently and properly market and promote themselves.

The minute you wake up in the morning, look at yourself in the mirror and remind yourself that no matter what happens today, you must do at least one task that will push you closer to making your dreams of becoming a musician a reality. One form of marketing that has opened doors for me is speaking about what I do every chance I get, whether that is during a casual conversation at a bar or at the office with my co-workers. The more you expose yourself, the larger your audience and contact list will be. Another excellent form of marketing that has done wonderful things for my career is performing for free every chance I get. Not only will this help you improve your performing skills, but you also never know if a famous producer might be watching your show.

Always stay positive and surround yourself with great people. If you believe in yourself, learn from your mistakes, and relentlessly market your work, you’ll be on the charts before you know it.

Ria Del Mar, based in Miami, is a Grit Daily contributor and an empowered, free-spirited female singer with a rebellious heart. Growing up in a religious Colombian/Cuban Hispanic household created many restrictions for the singer, which encouraged her to break out and find her voice as a singer and songwriter. Ria Del Mar began singing at the age of 8 and continued her path at open mic nights in college. After a falling out with her first producer she didn’t record again until she was 22. Ria creates music for the soul centered on being an independent woman. You can feel her emotions and passionate, alternative vibe in her deep, soothing, sultry, soulful voice with a jazzy, bilingual twist.

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