An Open Letter To Those Who Moved To Nashville For Music

Welcome to Nashville.

Music City. Nashville, Tennessee. Where the places and people who could make your dreams come true are right down the road. Where creativity flows through the streets like rain down Music Row. Where knowing Nashville is like being a part of the cool kid’s club. You’ll be elbow to elbow with famous country singers and industry folks at the bars and the person who could change your life could be standing next you in line at a juice bar. Everyone knows everyone and everything. Secrets trade hands just as fast as money for drinks on a weeknight when all the road warriors are back in town from their weekend run. Where you’ll get put in Demo Jail faster than you can ask “Midtown tonight?” You’re the person all your friends from home want to come visit because you live in the cool city. The Ten Year Town is where artists pack up and set out for with a list of goals. A pub deal, a booking deal, management, a record deal. A songwriter cut, a song on the radio, a song that charted, a number one song, an impressive social media following. A tour support gig, a headlining tour, approval, staying power. Fans. For those trying to break into the business side of the industry, you start out working to find a receptionist or PA job. Or selling merch just to get out on the road. You’re working and networking to prove that you’re not just a fan trying to work in music because it looks fun. Just a couple of the things everybody is fighting for. Does that happen overnight? Absolutely not. That’s a lesson I’m learning to accept. Music City will chew you up and spit you out. And the people doing it will smile as they do it. You’ll hear “no” all the time, “maybe” that turns into nothing just as much, and “yes” hardly ever. But it only takes one.

You’ll meet a lot of characters and all stars. You’ll get big leagued. You won’t get that job you thought you were promised or thought you deserved. You won’t get that write you thought was a done deal. Your closest friends are also your competition. Loyalty is hard to come by because it’s “just business”. You have to be so careful because you don’t know who is genuine or who just wants something from you. Your song on hold will get dropped. People who were nowhere to be found during your bar gig days will come running when you head to that arena stage and say “I knew him/her back when”. People who made fun of you for spending so much time giving a shit about an artist they had never heard of will beg you for tickets when that artist gets a number one song. You’ll work hard every day and things won’t go your way. But that’s Nashville. That’s the music industry. And we love it. We love Nashville’s beauty and find inspiration everywhere we look. Because we love the music and we love that our lives are not average 9 to 5 lives with weekends and holidays off. Monday is the weekend because you just spent Thursday through Sunday on the road playing bar gigs or arena shows. We get high off of being onstage or helping someone get to that stage. Music surrounds us at all times. And that’s why we’re here. So keep grinding and don’t forget what you came here for.

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