Guitarist. We're a dime a dozen. I'm working to be worth a dime by myself... but we all know there's only one dime and the world of music hasn't been the same without Pantera.
Music is my happy place. When I'm on stage, I can forget everything that's happened and just lose myself in the notes, melody, harmony and rhythm.
I currently play in an Iron Maiden tribute that has been gathering momentum. I'd really like to take that on the road and gain the notoriety of that "other" tribute that tours the world.
I'd start with me since that's all I can really change. A bit more smiling, a bit less worry, and more time spent practicing.
As funny as it may seem, the theme song to The Greatest American Hero. When it starts out, "Believe it or not, I'm walking on air..." it immediately transports me back to my parents' basement as a kid and brings in a flood of good memories.
Iron Maiden (you did see that I'm in a tribute, right?), Dream Theater, Testament, Saga, Kill Devil Hill, Skillet and Newsboys.
When I finally get a song all put together, I have a sense of calm come over me. Then, I start getting excited to play it live. It's the excitement of playing in front of an audience that keeps me driven.
It's a rough business, and yet too many don't treat it like a business. At least locally, most of the music fans are tired of showing up watching 5 drunk guys on stage. Act like professionals. You don't see Iron Maiden, Metallica, A7X or (insert your favorite band here) falling down drunk on stage. That was the 80's... people have moved on from idolizing drunks.
Music is not a competition. Quit acting like it is. There's plenty to go around.
My fiancee and I try to get out every other weekend either one or two nights to see bands that we haven't seen or haven't seen in a while. My band invites others that haven't received a lot of people to their shows but deserve to as openers for our shows (we draw quite well any more) to help spread the love.
Be personable and approachable. This makes fans into fanatics, and they'll spread the word more than anything else you can do.