It’s been many moons since my last blog here on NeilSattin.com, and I think it’s time for an update! When last we met, I was leaving my regular routine of blogging to “follow my dream” – which, as a reminder, had evolved into writing/performing/recording music for kids and their parents. At the time I was just getting started, with my songwriting kicking into high gear, and I had recognized that it was going to take a significant amount of time and effort to get to the next level. So blogging took a back seat while I shifted my attention onto the world of children’s music. That was last February (2008), and here’s how it’s been going since:
My first order of business was to spend some time booking shows, since there’s generally several month’s delay between when the show is booked and the actual performance date. By March of 2008 I was booking shows that weren’t taking place until the summertime and fall. How did I book shows? I basically picked up the phone. Even in a world blessed with the magical Law of Attraction, you still have to DO something in order for things to happen. I also played a showcase for the Maine organization of Park and Rec departments. The results:
- Regular shows at libraries, schools, and a festival or two.
- A call to perform at a regional old-school vaudevillian theater as part of a live late-night talk-show as the musical guest.
- Co-performing at a school with Maine’s premier children’s musician, Rick Charette.
- Playing a show on the Children’s stage at the Maine Common Ground Fair (complete with stage diving 5 year olds!).
- More shows booked, including New Year’s Eve at L.L. Bean!
As you can see, the only real obstacle to becoming a children’s music performer was to – well – become a children’s music performer. And to put some serious effort into making calls, connecting with people to arrange shows, practicing, and, finally, letting the “rest take care of itself”.
I’m quite psyched with the results. Am I supporting my family entirely through musical endeavors yet? Nope! But I see a path towards having the music that I play become a significant contributor to my family’s bottom line.
The main thing that needs to happen, in order to get to the next level, is to get my first recording together. I’ve already pre-paid for some studio time, but I’ve faltered a bit in my pre-production (read: arranging the tunes for the CD). Once that gets back on track, though, it’ll be into the studio for me. A CD will make it much easier to market myself outside of the state AND give me another potential source of revenue. The process of making the CD will also be a way for me to deal with my old friend “perfectionism” – which I’m sure will make for some great blog articles.
On a personal level, we were pretty close to scraping the bottom of the barrel, income-wise, by June of 2008. I made some enquiries about work at my old employer (Full Discourse, a software development and consulting firm) and fortunately they had a spot opening up on their team for me. That’s been good for keeping things together, financially, but it’s been tough to find time for my outside-of-the-day-job endeavors. For instance, in order to write this article I’m sitting in bed at 6 in the morning – one of the only moments of the day that isn’t spoken for with work or family time.
We are preparing for the arrival of another new little one (codenamed Pickle – a daughter who was due to arrive on Dec 14 2008 – i.e. she should be here any day now), and I have been slowly continuing work on my other personal projects. I’ll discuss those soon, as I revisit the question of whether or not you can make money as a blogger (quick answer, a resounding “yes!”).
I’ll also be adding some more diverse content yet again – probably going back to the theme of relationships – knowing when to leave them, knowing when to keep them, and essentially dealing with all of the emotions that you experience along the way. If there’s anything in particular YOU want to talk about, please feel free to drop me a line using my contact form.Tweet