By: Diane Untz
The annual CMA Awards are coming up and it’s all the buzz here in Music City. It got me thinking about things like the beautiful black limousines, the red carpet walk in beautiful gowns, and the Artist acceptance speeches; how they race to get in all their “thank yous” before the cued music starts prompting them off the stage. Then that segued into the enormity of people involved in the success of an Artist’s career. There are so many moving parts and although fans may never know the names of all the folks rattled off by the Artist, our industry knows their names and their roles. It is out of respect that they be thanked at that microphone because without an army of support like they have, there wouldn’t likely be a career of that magnitude.
For all the Artists who have gratefully become household names, there are considerably more Artists that see that red carpet quite differently. If you caught the ABC hit show, “Nashville”, this week then you may understand a little better where I’m headed with this. The Scarlet character was getting a taste of the big leagues with a new record deal and she made a frustrated comment about how the music business seemed to be about everything “but” music. The label was trying to mold and shape her into someone she wasn’t comfortable with. She felt like a fish out of water and put her foot down, refusing to cooperate at a gala, in an effort to remain true to herself. As a result, she was asked to leave the party by her record label and her deal could be compromised. There are big sacrifices that can come with sticking to your guns if you feel like a popular direction is not for you. If you are not willing to join in the games, or learn to master them, then you may not get a turn at the microphone. However you can maintain artistic integrity and you can figure out a way to carve out a living for yourself in your own unique way. There are plenty of alternate avenues these days, although they may not be quite as sexy. The good news is that if you are staying true to who you are and actually doing something good in the world, lightning can always strike.