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TEM Blog

The Entrepreneurial Musician Blog by Andrew Hitz featuring articles on being an entrepreneur in the music business. Show notes for The Entrepreneurial Musician Podcast.

Filtering by Tag: Canadian Brass

TEM 61: 1,000 True Fans

Andrew Hitz

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This episode of TEM features my thoughts on the famous "1,000 True Fans" concept by Kevin Kelly. Be sure to read the blog post at the top of the links below!

Topics Covered:

  • Why you only need "1,000 true fans" to make a good living as an artist
  • Why the easiest way to get a fan to give you $100 each year is to produce a lot of different content
  • How the key to cultivating true fans is direct contact with them
  • If you gain one true fan a day for three years you will end up with 1,000
  • Stop procrastinating and regularly ship the art you are working on


Want to help "keep the lights on" and make future episodes of TEM possible? Please visit our Patreon page to see how you can help:

You can also help other people find the show by leaving a rating and a review over on iTunes.

The Entrepreneurial Musician is produced by Joey Santillo.

Ignore the Path and Leave a Trail

Andrew Hitz

“Do not go where the path may lead; go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

I'm not sure you could get better advice in less than 20 words for someone making a go of it in the music business today than this quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson (who obviously wasn't speaking about the music industry in 2015!)

If your plan is to play in a string quartet that is very similar to the Kronos Quartet that simply does it better than them, good luck to you.

If your plan is to write a book that basically mirrors the message of The Savvy Musician by David Cutler and simply write it better, good luck to you.

If your plan is to play in a brass quintet that mirrors the repertoire and persona of the Canadian Brass and simply do it a little better than they do, good luck to you.

To be clear, I'm not sarcastically wishing you luck because any of those three things are impossible. To the contrary.

You can absolutely do what Kronos does a little better. You can absolutely write a better book than Dr. Cutler did. You can absolutely be a better version of Canadian Brass. (Although all of these will be incredibly difficult to accomplish!)

The point is that the market place is not looking for a book that is 2% better than The Savvy Musician. Why was it such a wild success? Because there were no books like it. People talked about it. People shared it. People spread the word.

No one will get excited about a slightly improved version of anything that already exists and that's if they even notice in the first place.

But if you leave a brand new trail that is interesting, people will do your marketing for you. Just ask Time for Three, Gustavo Dudamel, Alarm Will Sound, and countless other artists and ensembles.

It's been done many times before and the beautiful thing is there's always room for more trails. Always.

Show Notes for Episode 5: Jeff Nelsen of Fearless Performance

Andrew Hitz

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Jeff Nelsen is the founder of Fearless Performance, former horn player for the Canadian Brass, and Professor of Horn at Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music.

He discusses his time with Canadian Brass, how he won four orchestral auditions, and how he started Fearless Performance, a method for mastering the mental process of performance.

He is one of the most uplifting people I've ever met and that is reflected in Fearless Performance.  In this interview, he discusses selling yourself as a musician (which he prefers to refer to as sharing), how to get the best out of yourself on stage, and most importantly how he took the idea for this program and made it a product in the form of seminars, lectures, and books.

As with Dr. Tim in the last episode, this will leave you fired up and ready to follow through on any ideas you have kicking around in your head!


Want to help "keep the lights on" and make future episodes of TEM possible? Please visit our Patreon page to see how you can help:

Produced by Austin Boyer and Buddy Deshler of FredBrass