The Artist's Path to Success
We have a google hangout coming up so this is this is one of my past clients who I coached would be coming on live and he's the author of a book creamy dan I am good how are you? Fantastic how'd your recording session go kind of dreamy kind of awesome goose bumps uh you know, just one of those one of those days where you're like this is this is right it was just really fantastic that's won that's wonderful. That is wonderful. So bring me down I'm going to ask you teo way had an interview this kind of a similar format that I put on making art making money um so, um first of all, how do you introduce yourself now I am dan barret I'm the ceo of rubicon artist development and uh we're a recording studio that connects your inner life to your music and your music to value for others and you recently wrote a book can you show us that you have it? You don't have it with me perfect marketing moment. I know, I know this is uh what's the name of it it's called the remembering process and I wrote ...
it with my good friend joe by tally you khun google or go to amazon and bring the remembering process dan barret job by tally and I have the one copy it's it's kind of I have it in a safe guard they just they have a happy will. I only have one. They're going to send me a box that I'm going to send you eighteen. All right, that's. Fantastic. Now I'm bringing that book up because the remembering processes that is part of the creative process and it's part of the process is part of grammy dan's unique value proposition when he's working with his music, his vocal vocalist sit he's actually helps them through this process. So his unique value processes so defined he's gotta broke book to prove it. And that's really cool. All right, so, um, we were just talking about networking earlier and there's also online networking, so I wouldn't just share how you and I met. And I couldn't remember a few years ago here for years back there what's that so it's about anyway, so we went. We met because there was there's a there's, a book written by michael gerber called image, which stands for the entrepreneurial myth. And someone wrote a post about making art making money. And I responded to the by wrote a comment on the post and then grammy. Dan saw the post and you responded to me and can you tell a little bit of can you finish that story, absolutely, um I saw somebody who had a website that's, an artist who thrive dot com, and I was just like, I don't know what it is, who it is, but that's, my people and I'm going to sign me up on this it's so important, you know, uh, I was just at the point where I was breaking out of that sort of poverty myth, and then I found somebody that said, you know, just just your website alone, I knew I was gonna have something to do with you whether I was gonna be a fan follow you, but then I found out that I could work with you. It was a matter of days or maybe a couple weeks, and we're already working together. You were my tribe. You taught me about tribes air, and you told me about seth godin talking about tribes, but you are my tribe from the moment I saw that. Now, here's the other here is the other part of the story so greatly, dan, you said, I'm a musician of, like, I don't know if I can help you. I don't know anything about music or the music industry to remember that I do, and I said, I don't care, you're my people I like that's like no, we'll be fine we'll figure it out way did but I was like I just I don't know anything about music I know nothing but it worked out we worked out well, so so you're doing really really well I'm really proud of you I'm really happy for you you've really done just you're just blossom aides continue and you're also now you got this ripple effect going on because you're helping all these other artists, all these other musicians so wonderful but obviously you had we've had some successes, you've had failures and you've learned some lessons, so what are the three top success is that you've experienced whatever brings to mind the book is one of the successes because one I wrote a book way congress really? But I wrote the book I got the opportunity right the book because I was making an album with joe with joe by tally and so all that I try to be careful not to spread myself too thin and writing books was not on my front burner, but it it came out of doing rubicon and making albums with people, so I kind of I considered a success because I wasn't chasing too many rabbits, but it just sort of it was a beautiful outgrowth of something of my core business so and and it's sort of supported my core business, so I'm really happy about how I was able to take a tangent, but it was a focus to change it, if you will. And it really has worked out beautifully. So that was there'll be one success. Oh, number two, number two. Uh, what comes to mind is actually like a a, um, my band wanna un award in austin best fruits rock band in austin a few years ago. And that I was very proud of that because one of the things I love about your work, it's, very values driven and my band porter davis, we don't work as much because I'm so focused on rubicon, but way would we have a value statement? And a lot of them is attention to the roots of what we do. So that includes, you know, we do a lot of blues, so we will. We'll toast to muddy waters before we play. We will. We're very focused on the roots of the music we play and we won with best roots rock. So the cohesion of that are that there's a congregant, and I really encourage all the artists I record now to really know what you stand for and rise and fall on you put your flag in the ground and let it wait and see who salutes it and that so that award really, uh that ward stands out not because it was in a war but because it was roots was in our value statement and we won best broots rock and that was way were sticking to what we believe in. And the final thing is, uh, this is I think I gave different answers. That's all right, you can make it. Well, this is what comes up now, it's just the longevity sticking with it, you know, just twenty years, right? Twenty years in music on dh it's finally making more sense. And, uh, so I'm most proud of is not quitting, you know, just just keep finding a way. Ruthie, who I was working with today is a grammy nominee. She was talking about her path and music, and she just said, uh, the universe supports people who look at what's front of that in front of them are grateful for it no matter what, no that's somewhere in the cards in front of you there's path. And so just keep looking at what's with you and making a decision and keep moving forward with it. And I've I've somehow managed to stay in even though there's no prescribed path and now it's really it's really working out? Wow, that's beautiful, what she said it's it's just no wonder she's been nominated really she's deep yeah she's incredible and so let's go to your big fat fattest failures what's the first we're going to go to three what's the first one that springs to mind the first one I didn't tell you this last time on the google hangout which people can check out I loved that talk that we had I bought my wife and I spent a ton of money on vending machines on dh lost a whole bunch of money on dh uh good the big failure if that we were being too darn logical we're like well everybody needs to snack so I I'm just so much better at life when I'm following my passion it just the money really does follow a lot better when I'm really passionate about what I'm doing and um so that's that's it so we did this other thing that we put all this money into it because it made more sense in we sure lost a lot remember soon paler springs to buy those damn vending machine I love that invested vending machines no, but the lesson there is if this is what you're supposed to do if you're if you're watching and saying you clearly are committed to being an artist on some level just go with it, get it get in there, you know, talk don't mess around with doing whatever else you think you're supposed what's number two big fat failure number two number two are doing things that you're really good at I love this this is brilliant, so talk about that I have a buddy named named gay hendricks who wrote a book up the big leap he also wrote the foreword to my book with joe and gay taught me about your zone of genius if you do things that you're good at your kind of your you're up the creek because you'll get good results and you can't just be good and you have to be great at your nature here unique value if you're just kind of good there's no room in the art space for people were just kind of good like there's just no so he talked about your zone of even your zone of excellence is dangerous on lee take jobs that are in your zone of genius so I d motivated alright deescalated my performing career because I just really felt like I really like it I liked performing, but I just know that as a producer I have moves that I don't have as a performer, I just have moves as a producer, I sent a on a grammy nominee out of here beaming excited about her album as a performer house but you'd see me be like, yeah it's pretty good and then I admit it like I just had finally had to get real that like I just didn't I was only gonna be excellent at it and that wasn't going to make me a living you have to be whatever his past excellent and theirs and I really believe that everybody has this little niche that they could be even better than excellent it's their zone of genius and even when you really roll out of bed with bleary eyes you still can make moves that whereas in your zone of excellence you really have to work too damn part right teo get it done so so don't do things you're good at yeah no that's awesome! That is awesome! I love that alright number three big fat failure number three oh man, I mean there there are so many this whole thing whatever springs to mind well, what a big failure was my music school on dh that captures a couple of things that music school is logical like huh? Just teach lt you know I'm going to teach like lawyers had a play new young songs and kids it just makes sense, you know, it's the vending machines of music we so I opened a music school and and I have a lot of love for the process because I really it was my business school that's where I started to buy the michael gerber e meth books that's why I started understand how business gets done but the mistake we made was something that you're gonna mean it was before I knew you we didn't have a business plan way just thought that like if you care about what you do and you shake hands and kiss babies that are good people that you care a lot about what you do and you're good at it and you're really nice to everyone you're going to make a living and if you could actually so I love it you just teach this class please let's let's live but I'm flying out for volume two all right all right I've been austin yet yes don't do don't do things you're good at you know yeah this is so this is so so good oh wow all right no business plan is a plan to do no businesslike way love that you know what actually there's something that you said that I referred teo in the book sell you out without selling out one hundred one rules and I actually say this out like I said it I said it yesterday at some point a business plan but if you remember saying this a business plan is not a road map it's a compass yeah yeah it's not everything I mean it changes all the time but it's something that you can refer back to and change and measure yourself by how do you even think it might work is still aboard uh but and really, what it measuring what your needs are in life and what you would have to actually do teo even meet your basic needs just to see what that looks like on paper so many people in the music world and I'm sure the visual art world they're just kind of they're throwing it against the wall and wondering why they're almost they I mean, you know how how will you know how it you have to know at least what it looks like on paper if this word of work you know, work it out on paper, dig in and let it fail on paper times yeah, so so that's what I learned when I when I uh so I sold my share of the music school and opened up this artist development studio, which is recording studio, which was my passion so I've got into my eye and my zone of of of genius and you have to really own that it's your zone of genius, it doesn't mean that all your work is genius, but you have to know that you care about it so much that you're going to put in the time uh to be to to get to that level of genius on dh er and so yeah, I made a business plan right away and I wouldn't start it until I could measure how it was gonna work and then keep tweaking it and changing and I literally yesterday was making a new business plan and re reorienting with thiss exactly because it's a company. So if you're on a destination from point a to point b, you got to keep referring to your compass and make sure your pointed, true north right all the time. Otherwise you just wrote something. Could you know why I even bother if you're not going to look at it again? You gotta look at it, check in, re adjust the coordinates, make sure your point in the right direction. So grammy dan, can you give one piece of parting advice to all the artists, photographers, musicians, jewelry designers, painters, all those people were you gonna tell him? I'm going to reiterate one of your big point? I mean, I'm just such a love you annick, I'm such a fan and your your your stuff is, uh, help me in innumerable ways, so I have two pieces of advice. Go and order the remembering process way ems on dot com rambling process by daniel barrett job I tally and that'll and then goto audible dot com and on download audiobooks listen to one while you're really another yeah that's advice number one, number two what was coming up? It is not about you or me you've gotta know what lights you up I love making albums I have to don't tell my wife even though she's probably going to see this, but I like it better than going on vacation I I'd rather make a record then go on a cruise or go to the ball almost whatever plus I got bit by a dog not vacation maybe like it may be like vacation even less I love making albums it's heaven for me and it doesn't matter it's on ly mattered that's my stick only matters is what kind of value do I send? Somebody lit up but I send somebody out what do I do? I connect people's inner life to their music that's what matters from my business the fact that I like doing it well, connecting people to their intellect to their music and their music to others that's how I get to keep doing what I love but with but the fact that I love making albums is of no consequence except for to me it's just what I do for others and if I ever send somebody out of here not connected to their inner life to their music I have failed because rubicon is a brand and it's a promise kept and if I ever don't keep that promise even one time then I'm I'm I'm going if I do that enough I will lose my I will lose, you know my favorite thing. So every time it's about what did I send them out with? It doesn't matter. All my gear, all my fancy stuff. No one cares. They wanna be connected. Yeah. Oh, my god. You didn't you just just creativity and you could teach the way. Well, let's see, I mean, I'm sure dan's really engaged our audience has anyone every questions for down they'd like to take this opportunity. Well, thank you. Rock. At what point it at what point? What happened when you figured out it wasn't about you? What was happening in that? That chunk of time? Well, I was failing for fifteen years straight. Yeah. So living with me now, wait fifteen years left. Let my pain I mean, rubicon. My whole business is a love letter to myself. Fifteen, twenty years ago in to try to save other people decades of their life. I was just pissing myself off people off girlfriends off, eating their food out of their bridge with my parents worrying about me. Do I have to send you like a gift card to the grocery store? Like I was just like it was? It wasn't this like it was like hitting my head against the wall. I mean, I was having fun like, I'm being a little it's, actually pretty true. I mean, I was having interesting experiences, and I was learning about my craft, about myself and living love people him, so that I was having fun in a lot of ways, but at a certain point, so but what happened was I just either had to, like, get a new a different job, and I was miserable. Everything else I would try to do, I would go. I went, I went to school, uh, to change it up and become a psychologist. And this is true. What is? What is the woman's name? Who asked the question when when I ended up with four music classes and my I don't know how it happened, I wish him a transcript, and I had all music classes like, and it was this weirdos like sleepwalking. I don't know who enrolled for all music classes. I guess I did way convention career, so you may, like nothing else made sense, but I had then I was, uh, derek sievers, who used to own cd. Baby, you have to love something so much, you're willing to let it change you. And are you willing to let it change you I had to change is a in my entire world you from pretty self centered and what do I want out of this and it's funny I went from performer look at me to like you know really no one hears about may I make a record and I listen to a new interview that an artist of mine did and I worked my ass off on her album not one single message of anything I did for her record on this in this interview yeah no election and it doesn't matter because this is not about me right but it would have pissed me off to no end years ago but I get to make records so she can talk about whatever was important to her and her interview wow. So it's not about me anymore um awesome wow what do you guys think from your dad? I'm sure you know the way creative life works we have a live online audience who follow through so many great comments community gina's saying grammy down you are a great natural funny story funny story telling kick it up on kim patel wants to know when are you teaching on creative lives about yeah let's do something yeah I love it austin yeah well great we'll do anything you could do it on your own or we'll do it together about that want to do with I love it I love it he called him grammy dancy making people call you grant me there it's also the book is about remembering your future and kind of working backwards and when and call me grammy dan that was basically, uh you nailed that you got me one hundred percent man that's what the whole book is about that's how I've been operating for years so it's like this you were my people yeah, I just want to get anyone to give me leave you with this because it's very it describes damn grandpa dan's book and it describes how we got started the first question I asked him is what do you want? So you want me to coach you? What do you want said I want a grammy and like we'll find then from here on out you're name's grammy dan I'm not going to call you anything else and he said and I said and I want an invitation to the award ceremony and I'm gonna wear a red dress and he said and I said, are you going? Are you going to invite me? Do I get an invitation? And he said yes, so we work together absolutely and I expect that the time we do our creative live you will own the red dress because I don't want you procrastinate that e that fired action thank you so very much I really appreciate your time your insight you've been at this for a long time you have a lot to say you have a light a lot of failures you've had now a lot of successes it's really valuable to hear your perspective and thank you so so very much you just our joy to work with I am so proud of you so very much I'm so grateful I use the things that we've talked about every single day thankful for the one hundred fall get great teachers get great coaching get this uh that was I want to say that to quinn uh one of the things I did is that I started to get great coaching from an from joe is I really opened myself up to great teachers I realized I couldn't do it alone and I didn't have the knowledge so a great books and great teachers where the the that was the crowbar between my old self in my new thank you so much weight but wow wow way I let grammy and got a little longer because I think he was really uh really helping me say what I've been trying to say over the past day and a half on di I hope that we've got you know we got it clearly he's on a mission he knows what his unique value proposition he is uncompromising in his values and he just man he's really he really is on fire he's doing very, very well and he's very, very happy that comes across clearly doesn't know yeah yeah, I really am very proud of him just finish and he's a joy to work with. All right, so we just have a few minutes to touch on this it's um it's just math math but people don't do it they don't take a good look at it. I really encourage you to do some base just basic exercise and look at these numbers every day every week at a minimum you have to see where your tracking this part is the part and the police is part of the eight part methodology with your plan for profit the only way you're going to figure that out. What are your various sales channels? Private lessons gospel spring sing alongs right? You have different sales channels added up what's the average what's the actual what's the expected you know, just use the numbers used the data you have access to what's the total is going to come in every month. Every year my income goes up wild leave month two months not really always useful to look at it month to month and only look, I have to look at it in the year how it's tracking there's classes that creative live I know on this I know you have a resource that khun got dive deeper into that uh, setting your prices and tracking your profits, tracking your expenses so what are your total sales expected. What? Your total expenses, profit loss. I know you know this. My point in showing you this is you gotta look at it, you have to stare it down and you can't. I am guilty. I buried my head in the sand and I delegated my accounting or bookkeeping to a bookkeeper bookkeeper, and she made a horrible mistake and it was it almost cost me a very significant client relationship, and I had to save it. I didn't like pull it out of the fire, and it was because I wasn't I just didn't like it. I didn't was confused by it. So after that, I actually started using zero actually dot com, which is an online accounting platform, and I just dug deep and learned it. And now I am very clear on what my books are it's very empowering. So I really recommend you can't really you can't entirely delegate this to anyone. You have to know what money is coming in and what money's going out or you're never going to make a profit. And if you focus on that money coming in, somehow it just more of it shows up somehow.