There was a popular rap song in which the artist stated he never had a plan B. In other words, because he never thought for a minute he wouldn’t be a famous in the rap game, he didn’t pursue any other career. Although that outlook is admirable, is it realistic for everyone? Unless you have an investor, or a family member that worships the ground you walk on eventually you will have to make money to survive. Especially in America. And it doesn’t matter how talented you are. How well those talents manifest into dollars is the important thing. I wrote a blog post a while back called “A true artist won’t starve“. In it I touched on the rapper or two that I met still living with their mamas. In my opinion, a good plan B (i.e., a job that sucks, a boss you hate, no money, etc.), should be the catalyst for making your Plan A happen. Some of us (like myself) can work so hard at making plan B happen, that plan A falls to wayside for a minute. Don’t let this happen to you. Let you plan B be your motivation and not your bail out.
Back in the day when I lived in Detroit, I remember hanging out with my girl who introduced me to a brother who was a painter. I can’t recall exactly how the conversation went, but the term “starving artist” came about. He quickly assured me that although he was an artist he was not starving. He went on further to say “A true artist won’t starve.” In my opinion, he’s right. In the rap game you come across tons of emcees/rappers/artists, etc., over a certain age still living off of relatives with no end to their setup in sight. Now I’m not judging or knocking those who have the mentality that there is no plan B, but sometimes you need a good plan B to make plan A pop off. I’ve always kept an income while working on my music goals. Why? Simple- it takes money to make money and being an artist (much like being an independent contractor), costs money. Especially if you’re a female in the game. Producers want to get paid, transportation costs, wardrobe for shows, hair/nails/makeup, and equipment are just a few expenses you will incur if you keep in this business for long. Take my advice and learn another skill (if you haven’t already) that can help you create income. Even if school isn’t your forte, you can learn a trade and/or create your own lane to get some $$ coming in to fund your own projects. Remember “A wish without a plan, is just a dream”… (Katherine Paterson)