Talent, Chicken soup, and Quincy JonesPosted on June 8th, 2009 by Lee Jarvis in Advice & Tips, Offbeat
So I’ve recently finished reading Quincy Jones’ autobiography. I’ve always known the guy is a legend and that he’s worked on more projects than I could ever dream about, but reading the book has catapulted him even further into legend status in my mind, if that was possible. Within a few pages (or within a few years of his life), he would casually mention performing with Frank Sinatra in Vegas, becoming the first black VP of any record label, scoring the soundtrack for Ironside and hanging out with his pal Steve McQueen.
It got me to thinking, how on earth does one person have so much scope or influence?
What was the key to his incredible success? His determination? Sure that was a factor; he had more than his fair share of troughs along the way and always pushed on through. His passion for music? Possibly; he would be out listening to and writing music while other kids would be throwing a baseball around. But there’s plenty of passionate and determined people out there who either struggle to get by or don’t make it at all. The answer is a bit of both of the above, combined with…. talent.
A huge, unscalable, stratospheric dosage of talent.
“There’s lots of undiscovered talent out there too” I hear you say. Well, yes, but my point is that the different areas are not exclusive. Believe it or not, people often forget about the talent part. Everyone’s worrying about not “Getting a Break” (link) because “it’s who you know” etc. That can also be true in part, I just thought I’d emphasise the fact that you have to hone your skills in the studio along with having to constantly market yourself to your target. It does get infuriating, the amount of artists that develop relationships and reach key industry shakers with their demos only to hand over something weak and uninspiring. As an old college tutor of mine used to say…
“You can’t make Chicken Soup out of Chicken $h!t”.
Refining, improving, and showing the best of yourself should also apply to your Music Jobs profile. Adding your best mp3s, updating your resume, and adding some appropriate photos means that when you are searched or referred by people, you have a stronger chance of a foot in the door, and ultimately, successful connections in the music industry.