My name is Christopher Drapeau, I’m a heavy metal, hardcore, and punk rock guitar player, a solo composer and songwriter, and a member of Musicians For Musicians. MFM is a non-profit organization advocating for the rights and interests of professional musicians. Our goal is spreading the idea that #MakingMusicIsAProfession. My involvement started after moving to New York City and starting to establish myself as a working musician. My career has always had a DIYbackbone, and it is a very important ethic to uphold as a musician to be successful in my opinion; and MFM stands for that 100%.
I, Sohrab Saadat Ladjevardi (DooBeeDoo chief editor) and Dawoud Kringle (DooBeeDoo main contributor) stand against white supremacy and the deadly violence committed by the alt-right or Nazi groups in Charlottesville (VA) last weekend.
Greetings – My name is Marc Schmied and I’m a new member of MFM. I’ve been playing acoustic and electric bass professionally in the NYC area for about 25 years. I love playing different styles – currently I’m playing with Tommy Tune (covering the Great American Songbook), a funky rock band (Tamika & The Slay), a classical string quartet (The Iris Quartet), and whatever theater work comes my way. I’m also active in a grassroots environmental group that fights against climate change, 350brooklyn.org.
Several weeks before this writing, guitar master Bern Nix passed away. He was an elder master with astonishing musical abilities, and an impressive resume behind him. Yet he was in poverty, living in dire straits for years. His is an old story that seems to keep repeating itself.
This myth of the inevitability of the “starving artist” is self perpetuating. It seems that people on all sides of the equation have it so ingrained into their subconscious that it’s almost expected that musicians be impoverished, ignored, and mistreated.
An Editorial and Commentary on Musical Professionalism By Dawoud Kringle
Look, I get it, OK? This is a hard life we chose. We are trying to cultivate our skills and build a career and a reputation for ourselves. And somehow, through it all, we have to pay the bills, keep a roof over our heads, and put food on the table.
As we all know, there is some sort of mythological historical model that musicians must pay their dues. And despite the vague details surrounding this idea, there is certainly some truth to it. A musician must prove him or herself, must cultivate his or her skills, and build one’s business from the foundation up.