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5 Habits of Successful Musicians: John Branca UCLA

Whether you’re a pro musician or an aspiring pro, you’ve undoubtedly observed successful artists and noticed their strong work ethic. The magic doesn’t happen by itself. Sure, musicians vary in their ways of getting things done. But over time, there’s marked progress in their artistry. What are some key habits of outstanding musicians? Here’s a basic rundown.

1. They Deal With Business

Like it or not, there’s a business side to being a successful performing musician. Whether it’s participating in union activities, updating your Bandsintown schedule, or negotiating contracts, there’s always something to do to deal with this aspect of your career. Support and advice from experts in the field can help you make wise choices and maintain your peace of mind.

Taking care of business doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Spending a few hours a week learning about biz topics can help you be savvier about your career. Subscribe to a few high-level blogs to make your learning more enjoyable.

2. They Stay Healthy

This is vitally important. Since touring is a more important source of income than ever, it’s essential to maintain good physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Too many musicians burn out early, fall into addiction, or suffer from untreated mental illness. Attend those doctor appointments, get enough sleep, eat healthy foods, exercise, and reach out for support.

3. They Make Music

It seems obvious, but it’s easy to lose touch with your innate musicality if you’re an aspiring pro. Whether you’re a singer, instrumentalist, or both, don’t forget to make music every day. Even if it’s just doing soft vocal warmups and a few scales, making sound will ground you and help you maintain your foundation.

4. They Listen

Both listening for pleasure and critical listening are important for professional musicians. YouTube has made it possible to take in every type of music. There’s nothing like putting some great music on and listening with eyes closed and no distractions, though. You’ll absorb powerful influences and inspiration.

5. They Stay Connected

Going out to hear live music, taking part in networking opportunities, and getting quality coaching is a must if you want to cultivate your artistry. If you’re the more introverted type, it’s okay to be selective about these types of activities; the most important thing is to not isolate yourself.

Maintaining constructive habits will help you develop into a mature musician over time. Keep these suggestions in mind as you grow.

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