I’m a producer today with tons of artist connections and handful of successful online ventures. But before that, I faced tons of failure as an artist. The studio was expensive, beats were expensive, maintaining appearances was expensive, but the payoffs were cheap. A series of bad decisions without any experienced guidance nearly left me dead.
I would work on music regularly, but struggled to materialize the vision into a completed project. I wanted to have records that sold big numbers, got plaques, and boosted my notoriety. I wanted the cars, money, and everything else that comes to the rich and famous. If only I could break into the scene as an artist, then all my problems would disappear overnight, or so I thought.
At the same time, I was struggling with addiction and found that this interfered with my dreams. It made me into an abrasive person who was difficult to work with and a wasteful person who prioritized drugs over investing in music. What I really wanted was to escape my circumstances and feel like I mattered.
While I had a number of projects on the table at that time, my behavior caused relationships to break down as my finances dwindled. Soon, I was destitute, in withdrawals, and a burden to those around me. I had learned how NOT to be a producer and artist.
At that point, on the brink of life and death, I had only a couple choices: Grow or Die. I had to learn how to be someone who adds value to others if I wanted to accomplish anything. If I wanted to win, I had to help others win.
I spent weeks in and out of hospitals while I was in withdrawals. I knew on a fundamental level that I needed to grow, but I didn’t have a plan. I spent two years simply learning and working on personal development before finding the path that could help other musicians (and me) to win!
Along the way there were many ups and downs. Mental health is something that is not talked about often in this industry, but it’s a miracle it didn’t take me out. Financially, I was in the gutter, but God made a way through hard work for me to stand up.
As a producer today, I am grateful that I’ve come out on the other side of the mess. I’ve been able to support other artists with my production skillset and have been able to start Producer Cast, a podcast with listeners in more than 20 countries.
Even more important was the internal transformation. Because of how blessed I was to be helped back on my feet by God, I seek to help pull artists up so they can win in their career financially. Through this journey, my mindset has shifted to adding value to others. Wherever you are today, you too can shift to become a value adder!