Is it time to face reality or not?
I love music and everything about it. I play guitar and piano and am open to musical genres although I prefer metal, rock, alternative, screamo, emocore, and punk. I like classical piano too and admire composers like Pachelbel, Beethoven etc. Anyways, right now I'm going to school to transfer to Columbia College in Chicago to pursue music performance. I write my own songs and play them on the guitar but for some reason my parents, mostly my father, does not like this at all. He says I am being ignorant and should be a doctor or computer specialist. Should I go for my dreams or the realistic?
try to apportion some time to each option - don't let one close the door on the other
It depends on what you want to get out of being a muscian. The best and most talented musicians in the country are not millionaires and never make it onto the top charts. If you just want to be able to pay the bills and live modestly, being a musician for a living is a perfectly feasible way to earn a living. If your goal is to be able to survive on your own on what you make through sales and live performances, you can achieve this (But I'm talking about earning less than the average salaried person out of college and with no health insurance). If your goal is to be rich and famous, the odds are against you. For you, it's obviously about music and doing what you love; but it's also about expectations and being able to live the way you want to live financially. A lot of companies will hire people regardless of their major in college. They're just looking for hungry, hard working people who are driven. I was part of a company several years ago where a music major got into sales and climbed the ladder to vice president within 10 years. Before that, he was a professional drummer who was tired of being broke all the time.
Who says being a doctor or computer specialist is realistic?
And those two choices have little in common. Becoming a doctor takes about 7 years of university training and is very, very expensive to do. A computer specialist should be good at math and logic.
Keep doing the music but take some academic generalist courses while you look around at the world and grow up.
You don't sound like a serious musician, just someone who is into music. I've helped some SERIOUS musicians get their start and they put their heart, soul and all their spare time into it. Doesn't sound like that's you from what you say.
Just keep playing but take a serious look around at many professions and jobs. Study the subjects you like that will lead somewhere. If you want to be a doctor you need to study science. If you don't have those skills or desires, being a doctor is not for you.
Study business subjects. Maybe you will have a talent for it. The thing is many employers don't give a crap what you studied, they just want to see you had the guts to get through advanced school. They often don't care what you studied, just that you graduated which proves you're not stupid.
And follow your heart.
You'd make a lousy Dr or computer specialist.. just because its not your passion...
Follow your dreams.. this is your passion and purpose.
If it's a question, then it's time to face reality. Those that can succeed as musicians (the sort Old Empresario describes) have no question in their mind. Doing anything else is unrealistic for them. I can recite the next 10 years of your life for you if you pursue music as a career, because it's a time honored tradition of the "starving artist". You'll work at a coffee shop or a print shop for 5 years, go no where, and tell all your friends that you're still trying to "get the band going". In 5 years, you'll realize that it's a hopeless pipe dream, and probably have a kid or two, and decide that you need more money than your part time job will provide. The next 5 years you'll drift from low level white collar job to low level white collar job, and suddenly you'll snap out of it and get promoted and abandon the idea of ever pursuing music professionally.
Or, you can face reality now, use your skills with a guitar and piano as an enjoyable form of entertainment in your leisure time, and find a career that will be acceptable to your financial goals. Money makes the world go round. You can try to live without it, but eventually everybody has to conform or put a bullet in their own head. Friends and family will only tolerate you for so long. You'll regret not getting started in your career earlier when you see your friends start becoming successful before you.
I wanted to be an artist, but I went to an academically competitive high school, and subsequently into an academically competitive college where everyone I knew was either majoring in finance, pre-law, or pre-medicine. My parents discouraged art ("won't bring food to the table"), my friends thought it a silly thing. I was weak and listened to everyone, and it was a big mistake. I agree with the person who said that this IS your reality. If you are truly passionate about this, you can't even imagine doing anything else. Follow your dreams, always.
Wow - the eternal shall I shan't I.... ohhh bless you. Of course you should stay with your music and give it everything you've got BUT ( and it is a big 'but') just ask yourself - what is wrong with pursuing your education too? I see where your folks are coming from, and from where you're coming from too but not everyone can be a doctor, and not everyone can make millions doing what we love making music either. From a parent point of view, stick with as much education as you need to be able to earn a living ( and you do need some) but keep up with the stuff you love.
You need to ask yourself- do you want to be washing pots in a diner when you're 50? - or do you want to be playing music in run down hostile clubs when you're 50? These are worst case scenarios, but you can work both music and education if you really get yourself organised. Good luck with your wonderful dreams - work bloody hard at everything you do and you'll come good bless you
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