We caught up with BYGMusic artist Nick formally from Like-Minded who has set out on his own solo project as well as performing with the punk band Perch to talk shop…..
If you had a good chunk of change to spend to do something extraordinary in your creative process what would it be?
If we had a great deal of money to do something with creatively, I would probably put most of it into our own home studio. I have a modest home recording setup that I have recorded 99% of my output as a musician with, but times are a changing and money to be able to keep upgrading gear isn’t as readily there as it once was. I would love the opportunity to add a few cool new mics, maybe some more pre-amps or compressors. If it was a good chunk of change, I would love to have a hand in building a studio, as a part of my home, from the ground up. I am far from a professional when it comes to studio design, but would love that opportunity to read and learn more about wiring, acoustics, etc., and how it helps craft the sound of a studio and subsequent albums worked on there.
Your generation of talent often has to “pay to play.” Has there ever been a time where you actually lost money playing music?
In various projects, and over 15 years of playing music, I certainly have lost a fair share of money doing this. It has only been until really the last few years that I really got paid for gigs at all and made a profit some nights. Money has never really been a motivator for me playing music, because if it was the main motivator, I probably wouldn’t be a musician, haha. When you are younger and trying to tour, losing money can almost be guaranteed to happen. I would just say keep grinding and start touring if you have the ability to have some sort of “safety net.” I know some “adult” musicians who are funded by mom and dad still, and if that is your thing- cool – but that is not reality. Once you move out, get a place, get a car, get a job, get bills- you find the time and money isn’t able to go towards a tour van and Sheetz burritos like it used to be.
What are your thoughts on streaming? Has it helped you?
I definitely have a love/hate relationship with streaming. I’ve done research on the streaming industry, because I have written articles about it before and how it can hurt, but help, artists and their careers. I’m a big vinyl and tape collector, and will release albums on those mediums as long as I possibly can too. I think streaming hurts the physical product dimension tremendously. I love having a big record album cover to check out the intricacies of, or a lyric sheet to pull out and read along as songs go. Now you just click, click, click and it’s all there in one convenient place, but if you can’t hold it in your hand, it’s just stored on some server, it holds less weight with me. I don’t know, I feel like I can sound like an overly-nostalgic old guy with this topic, haha. Overall, I think it can be helpful if you are trying to reach new audiences, which it has for me, but don’t necessarily expect it to shape your career unless you have a lot more money to put into it (i.e. get on playlists, PR, advertisements, etc.)
Do you have a side gig?
I have a few gigs. Music definitely doesn’t pay the bills, and my related creative endeavors don’t either, but they have helped me gain my main source of employment, 100%. I do some graphic design, video/audio production, and writing on the side, but I make my main money as a Social Media Manager. I would say that some of the skills I learned from years in music (editing music videos, editing graphics, writing press releases, running social media accounts) have helped me get where I am, but it takes a lot more to excel in a job besides just those things.
How does your creativity in music impact your creativity in social? How does your aesthetic translate into social?
I would say my creativity in music impacts social media and marketing myself because my music and I are kind of one entity, even if that sounds corny. I rarely think of the things I create and myself as separate. I rarely set aside “music time” and just rather pick up a guitar and record/write for hours. I think having a girlfriend who is involved in music and creativity helps that, and having friends/family who deal with it also helps. I feel I physically speak or write in certain rhythms because of music. I think the way I dress, drink, eat, and so much more can also be impacted by the music I take in on a daily basis or the music I create. I won’t sleep sometimes because I dream of music and have to write it down immediately, thus impacting my “every day life” too. Most of my personal social media feeds reflect on what my various projects are doing at the time, which people don’t always care to see, but again, it is a huge part of who I am. As I mentioned above, I think all of the years of “working” in creative outlets such as music, graphic design, screen printing, etc., inform my every day “big boy” work habits as well. I definitely wouldn’t be me or doing what I do without music in my life.