When you visit Nashville and listen to the country music you may find yourself day-dreaming about your own path to stardom. What you'll find out is that there is no real secret to being a star or getting a record deal in Nashville. But there are more people than you might believe showing up in Nashville, to do just that with the majority of them failing and returning home within a few months.
Why Aspiring Country Singers Fail in Nashville
Why is that? Simply put—lack of planning, focus, and desire. There are the exceptions, such as LeAnn Rimes who possessed a spectacular voice and had the advantage of having a father who spent a great deal of money on her to create CD's and other public relations material to get her really noticed. And, it worked.
So unless you are fortunate enough to have an unlimited supply of free-flowing money, the best way to become one Nashville's success stories, the one who makes it in Nashville, is to practice to be the best that you can be, before arriving.
Tips for Success in Nashville
Do not make a move to Nashville unless there is a buzz among the people in your hometown about you. Being successful where you are located first will give you a leg up on the competition there. If you're not getting noticed locally, realize that Nashville is probably not going to notice you either.
Try to make as many public appearances in your hometown as you can, this will get you the experience you need and can really help out with your stage presence, another big factor when trying to become a success.
Find and get together with other musicians and songwriters, join some musician and songwriter organizations all of these will help you develop, enhance and improve your talents.
While in this local realm you may want to spend some time and money voices lessons and maybe learn to play a few more instruments too.
To the younger hopefuls, it is suggested that you graduate from high school and then attend and complete college. That will give you an alternative career to fall back on if the need ever arises and it most likely will. If you can try to find a college with good music programs this will also benefit you and your future in the music industry.
Be More Than a Singer
Nashville spits out singers every day but it's harder to get rid of singers who can also play an instrument, and they find it hardest to get rid of singer-songwriters.
There are so many singers in Nashville, that one more singer hardly makes a difference, but all those singers are looking for a great song to make them a star, so the songwriters are truly who rule the town. Songwriting is not a gift someone is born with; it is a learned craft and just about anyone can learn it.
Playing an instrument and learning the craft of songwriting are two definite advantages when attempting to attain success in the music industry. Nashville has one of the highest concentrations of songwriters in the nation and there are plenty more that consider themselves songwriters but yet the ones who make it are not the best songwriters, but the "best rewriters". Rewriters are those who are willing to tweak, rearrange, and essentially change their original songs to make them the better and more marketable. For example, the really great songwriters will take a song about their dog named Rex and make it generic or universal and are able to produce a song that appeals to the masses and not just the 100 or so people who happen to have a dog named Rex.
Sam Wellington has authored a good book entitled "Who Wants to Be a Country Music Star?" that offers a ton of insider tips and a host of ways to launch and maintain a Music Career!
Build Your Fan Base
Finally, once you've achieved local success make sure that you create and build up a fan base in your area. Fans play an intricate part in every musician's success but especially in the first beginnings of one's career. Always take care of your fans, they are the ones who will support and take care of you throughout your career.
Once you've gotten this far you will have set the stage for success and will be ready to attain Nashville Stardom by relocating to Music City USA.
Once in Nashville, you will face rejection in your quest to become a star. Try not to take rejection personally, shake it off and try again, maybe you really just weren't what they were looking for this time. The first winner of Nashville, Star Buddy Jewell was rejected for over 10 years by every major record label in Nashville. Many other greats such as Willie Nelson and Toby Keith have, at one point, been told that they could never make it.
Continue to add as many different angles to what you have to offer as a singer, musician, and songwriter; this will make it harder for Nashville to say no.
Always remember that the first main ingredient in becoming a star is "desire," keep it always in your mind and close to your heart and you will succeed.