I always harboured a desire to work in a music shop.
Music shop guys were cool – especially the ones who could make a £50 guitar sound like the most beautiful thing in the world. As I got older I started wondering if I could make a living from music which was one of my key passions – it was a romantic dream which seemed infinitely more attractive than slogging through a computer science degree.
Saturday mornings used to be a happy combination of a saunter into Waterstones bookshop followed by a quick spin round the legendary Bruce Millers music shop – perhaps a wee roadtest of some bit of kit I had no real intention of buying.
There are an awful lot of musicians out there – some very very good ones, and most of them don’t make any money at all – blame the internet or simply the number of musicians out there, but to make a decent living of any kind involves teaching, concerts, session work – basically selling your time day in and day out, and as I have mentioned in previous posts I firmly believe that selling your time is not the best way to success.
Some sensible gene kicked in and prevented me from embarking on a life as a travelling music bloke and I discovered that I was actually quite good at setting up and running an IT company called Pisys which now gives me the resources and freedom to indulge my passion.
I still love music – but it certainly doesn’t pay enough to support my lifestyle – my job or purpose does that. I love my job and I am deeply fortunate to be able to spend a lot of time pursuing things that interest me – one of which is becoming a better musician. My passion hasn’t gone away, in fact its probably stronger than ever but by recognising my purpose I have turned it from a dream to a reality.
So I’m in two minds about the advice I often see given to aspiring entrepreneurs – ‘follow your passion’ might not always be a great idea – if your passion is surfing maybe you’d be better off finding a job which frees you up to do a lot of surfing ! (hint: don’t open a surf shop!).
And I actually do have a Ukelele.