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You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know About Making it in Music

When I Was a Professional Musician I Knew A Lot

  • I knew I was good and that other musicians loved my groove and feel.
  • I knew I was easy to work with and well liked.
  • I knew that being good and well liked was what it took to make a living playing drums because well, I was making a living playing drums.

All I Didn’t Know

  • I didn’t know it took more than playing great to be successful in music.
  • I didn’t know the importance of clear goals. Not only did I need them for me, I needed them so I could tell people what I wanted to do.
  • I didn’t know success was a “team sport” and that I needed a team of musicians AND non-musicians.
  • I didn’t know how much I needed to know about business to succeed in music – even though I knew it was called the music business.
  • I didn’t know the difference between doing a job well and building a solid, life-long career.

And I Didn’t Know I Didn’t Know

Not knowing these things was not the biggest problem I had.

The biggest problem was that I didn’t know I didn’t know.

  • I didn’t know I didn’t know because none of my friends talked about them.
  • I didn’t know I didn’t know because I was working as a musician. Which leads to:
  • I didn’t know I didn’t know because the problems caused by not knowing these things don’t show up until it’s too late to fix them.

How ’bout you? Do you know what you don’t know? What are you doing to learn what you don’t know?

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About Steve Grossman: Former ACM and Grammy Award winning drummer. Author, teacher, speaker and Dale Carnegie Facilitator. Music career coach and mentor.

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