I have recently discussed this topic with several professional artists and I think Branford Marsalis is on to something here.
I have come in to contact with several aspiring professional musicians recently that don’t want to take lessons. I can’t speak for other instruments, but with guitar it seems there’s a badge of honor that goes along with being able to say, “I’m not formally trained” or “I’ve never taken a lesson”. One question…
Would you go to see a doctor that posted these quotes on their wall?? A lawyer? If you really cared about the quality of your care, or the quality of the product you are buying…I think you’d probably choose someone who takes their business, their career, their product seriously and someone you know has done their due diligence, knows their stuff.
I don’t know, maybe that’s just me…
So, let’s put it on the wanna-be-pro-musician…if you, instead, were a wanna-be-doctor, would you say the same thing? No. Unless you wanted to get arrested for practicing medicine without a license…hmmm, there’s an interesting idea…
What I’m advocating is this: All of you wanna-be-pro-musicians should poop or get off the pot. Take lessons weekly or even 2 or 3 times a week, buy books, buy videos, start actively improving yourselves instead of just hanging out and hoping to gain some knowledge whenever it happens to come your way. What are you waiting for!? If you don’t take your life choices, decisions and career seriously then who will?
Here’s what Branford Marsalis has to say about the students he’s been teaching as of late:
Thus endeth the sermon. Happy Wednesday everyone!!
2010 Grand Prize Winner (World Category) of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest