Growing Thicker Skin

In this article, I would like to share with you some ideas of how to and
better understand rejection and your feeling of being ignored. (I'm
including being ignored because we always think people hated our music
if, they don't call back instead of it may not being right for them.)

Obviously no likes rejection. As artists, we are typically "thinner
skinned" when it comes to the songs we write and the CDs we release. No
one likes to hear their music sucks or the other, not hearing back at

To understand why your music may be getting rejected or ignored, lets
look at some of the factors that could be contributing to this kind of

1. Your CD can be the starting point where you see your first rejection
or experience the feeling of being ignored from the music industry. I
have found that the leading factor to set people in these moods is the
artwork on the CD. Too often artists don't select the best pictures of
themselves or present an image in their artwork that matches the music
or best represents them. While the final choice of artwork is the
artist's, stop for a moment and ask yourself if it is representing what
you want it to.

2. Live shows can be a source of rejection ranging from bad musicianship
to poor visual performances. Some artists have a tendency to bore fans
by standing in one place for 40 minutes. The way your band members dress
can have a great effect as well. Do they present the image you want at
the shows? Or does it look like members of 4 other bands are playing together?

3. Reviewers can write some nasty things. Obviously it is up to your
music to sell itself. However, poor promotional materials enclosed with
the CD can lower their expectations of a great album before they even
listen to it. A big question to ask yourself is, did you send it to the
right reviewer? What type of music were the other artists he or she
wrote favorable reviews about? Maybe he or she doesn't like your genre
of music to begin with!

4. Radio is a great place to be ignored. There are a lot of different
views and misunderstandings about radio programming. The truth of
commercial radio is that most programmers are only interested in songs
that can hold an audience's attention long enough for them to sell car
insurance through commercials after it. Maybe your songs are too
creative or intelligent for them!

5. When it comes to online site reviewers and radio programmers, they
usually review your site first. If it isn't as good as it can be, they
will notice and dismiss your music, sometimes even before they have
listened to it.

6. Popularity is the greatest source of people wanting to lash out
against you. The more known or popular you become, the more people want
to hate you or say something against you to draw attention to
themselves. Sad but true. I've had my fair share.

The best strategy to handling rejection and being ignored is to try to
understand why. If you feel like you put your best foot forward with
your CD, your promotional material, your site and your live shows, you
need to remind yourself that everyone is entitled to an opinion. Even if
you feel they are wrong. Think of ways to turn their rejection or your
feeling of being ignored into an opportunity. Start thinking of some new

In the meantime, if you feel your music is good, than it is! Don't let
others keep you from moving forward. Rack it up to the idea that they
don't understand what you are trying to do and they probably never will.
Focus on the good thoughts of the fans that love you and keep moving
your career forward.

The only one who can stop your music career is you!

Author Tim Sweeney is head of Tim Sweeney & Associates, who are entering their 18th year of being, "the only true artist development company in the world."

Tim is one of the music industry's most sought after experts and consultants, and has written several influential books including "Tim Sweeney's Guide To Releasing Independent Records".

Tim Sweeney