Advice From Someone Winging It... PART 1 - the business of friends
I decided to start blogging - what a novel idea.
Although I've been in the "music business" for a while, I'm used to staying in the shadows where one is safe (and goes unnoticed). But music has never been something that can be put on the back burner for me. Writing, singing, playing music - it's everything to me. So recently I vowed to go all in. I've been actively working on an EP and wanted to share my story. So here it is, my unsolicited advice:
One of the most important things in my life are my friends. BUT.... friends are not always the best thing to have in the business. I've heard so many horror stories about friends hurting friends in the industry, or friendships dying off because of strain from the business. Yes - have connections, allies, acquaintances, etc. But friends? That should be a small circle. Friends can be the best or the worst. That being said, here is my friend criteria:
1. Friends are people who KNOW you and will say NO to you.
This means that friends will call you out when you're not true to yourself. They are not yes people who will like all your ideas and go along with everything you say - and this is a good thing. We all think our sh!t doesn't stink and would love to have people sniff our farts, but that's not real. And its better to have someone who is frank with you now than having a lot of hard truth thrown in your face later.
2. Friends are people who legitimately support you.
Your friends are the ones who will put up with your nonsense. Your friends are the ones who are down for you - they post your music, go to your shows (even the ones where only 3 people show), they push you to do better and move forward, and they show you love (to your face and not to your face).
3. Friends don't use you - there's no angle
Yes...once in a while we will call on friends for favors. But also, a true friend is not someone that always expects favors, or uses you for likes, features, connections, etc. and doesn't show up in your daily life. A true friend gives from the heart (and you better reciprocate) and truly cares about you.
If your friends fit the criteria, you're golden. And friends can be the best support. They keep you grounded and show you love. Artists, especially, are critical of themselves and sometimes friends show us the bigger picture. But know the difference between who is really there for you and who is around for other reasons. Keep that circle tight - there's nothing wrong with it. I am blessed to have some awesome friends. And I wouldn't be anything without them.