Indie Know-How

Tips for Becoming A Good Session Musician

In our last post we told you about some historic session musicians who are behind some iconic hits.

If you want to know what it takes to become a session musician yourself, check out these tips below.

1)  Master your instruments–  You’ll need to be able to sight read or pick up songs by ear very fast.  Regardless is you are playing live gigs or recording you’ll need to quickly get your part right.  You’ll also have more opportunities to work if you master more than one instrument.

2)  Know how to work with people effectively– Remember, you are there to help someone else fulfill their vision.  You can provide your valued opinion when asked, but don’t try to run the show because you are there in a supportive role.

3) Be versatile and flexible– You’ll need to be prepared to play different genres of music convincingly well, and be prepared to travel at any time to play your instrument(s) live or in a recording session.  You can choose to be more selective in where you play after you choose more high profile bands that offer more work, earnings and potential royalties.

4)  Live in an area with a good music scene– This can help you more easily get work and build relationships in the industry.  Make sure you talk to local studios and labels too to make sure you are on their radar screen

5)  Advertise your music services– Place ads in local papers, flyers in record shops, studios, online networks, forums that are read by songwriters who need musicians to record demos of their songs or need a backing band to record their demo.  Make sure you work your unique skills to get your foot in the door.

Becoming a session musician can take time so try to be patient and keep playing and building connections in the industry to get your name out there.


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