Taking Responsibility Should Give You New Access

Taking Responsibility Should Give You New Access

What happened to you is not your fault. But what you do with it is your responsibility.

What happened to you is not your fault. But what you do with it is your responsibility. Share on X

People have trouble taking responsibility. They don’t want to believe that they played any part in what has happened to them.

This resistance is understandable.

Who wants to believe that they had anything to do with getting sick, losing their dog, or their parent dying?

I certainly didn’t!

But I wanted to feel empowered, and my mentor was telling me that I needed to take responsibility for everything that had ever happened in my life. So, I tried it on.

Do you know what I discovered?

First, when I took responsibility for my life, I felt a sense of empowerment I never had before. Because now I could see that even if I didn’t have total control over life, I did have a say in it.

Human beings like to make everything mean something, even when there is no definitive, objective meaning behind it.

Human beings like to make everything mean something, even when there is no definitive, objective meaning behind it. Share on X

I realized that I could make things mean what I wanted them to mean. I didn’t need to insert myself as a victim into every picture. I could choose the picture and the framing!

Second, taking responsibility gave me access. I saw that I could do something about my circumstances.

Again, what happened wasn’t my fault. But I had to take responsibility for what I did with it.

Miraculously, actions took the place of helplessness and victimhood.

If I wanted to learn something, I could read a book. If I wanted to work through a difficult time in my life, I could see a counselor. If I wanted to feel better about myself, I could get a haircut, drink smoothies, and work out.

Importantly, taking responsibility should give you new access. It should give way to vantage points you’ve never visited before, and actions you’ve never taken before. That is the value of taking responsibility.

Taking responsibility should give way to vantage points you’ve never visited before, and actions you’ve never taken before. Share on X
Generating the Dartboard

Generating the Dartboard

When you want things to be done a certain way but don’t provide the empowerment or resources necessary for it to occur, you’re putting the cart before the horse. And you’re confusing people.

If you want to be powerful in management, you must show people the dartboard. “Here’s the bull’s eye, the target to aim for.” If you are not talking about the bull’s eye, or at least the dartboard, you’re wasting your breath.

Most managers over-explain obvious facts everyone knows and spend no time on the crucial details that move a project. Details they should be revisiting and re-presenting for their team repeatedly. Then they blame project managers for not doing their job. Is it your project manager, or is it your lack of leadership? Consider that it’s your lack of leadership.

Your opinions also don’t matter. In other words, if you set a goal for your team to generate $50,000 in sales in three months, and they reach the $50,000 figure in three months, but not in the way you wanted it to be done, it’s because you did not tell them how it was to be done. They still met the goal and you must fulfill on your promises, whatever they were. If you have a problem with how things were done, either throw out your preferences or get in the practice of generating the entire dartboard, not just the bull’s eye.

233 – The Renegade Musician eBook Overview

233 – The Renegade Musician eBook Overview

What can you expect to find inside The Renegade Musician? How can it help you on your music career journey?

That’s what we’re going to be looking at in this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast.

Podcast Highlights:

  • 00:26 – The Renegade Musician, a “harsh truth” eBook
  • 01:02 – Chapter 1: Music business
  • 01:19 – Chapter 2: Personal development
  • 01:42 – Chapter 3: Profit leverage
  • 01:59 – Chapter 4: Reinvesting
  • 02:20 – Chapter 5: Opportunity
  • 02:40 – Chapter 6: Prioritization
  • 03:02 – Chapter 7: Home base
  • 03:27 – Chapter 8: Paying the price
  • 03:55 – Chapter 9: Leadership
  • 04:14 – Chapter 10: Intuition
  • 04:32 – Chapter 11: Question everything
  • 04:54 – Chapter 12: Commitment
  • 05:17 – Chapter 13: Networking
  • 05:41 – Chapter 14: Planning
  • 06:02 – Conclusion
  • 06:31 – The Renegade Musician bundle


Hey, it’s David here.

Today I wanted to talk about my new eBook, The Renegade Musician: Stepping Out of the Shadow of the Old Music Career Model.

In a previous episode, I read the first two chapters of the book to give you a better idea of what’s on the inside.

In this episode, I’ll go through each remaining chapter and give you a brief overview of what’s inside the eBook, which you should pick up right away. I’ll share the links at the end of this episode.

This is a “harsh reality” kind of eBook. In this episode, I’ve softened the blow a little bit, but fair warning – you can expect these points to be harder hitting when you get to reading it.

Chapter 1: Music Business

The music business is 50% music and 50% business. The smartest musicians know this, so in addition to their creativity, they prioritize outreach, networking, marketing, and other high-level tasks that can bring the next breakthrough in their careers.

Chapter 2: Personal Development

Smart musicians understand the value of personal development and actively engage in reading, listening to podcasts, watching videos, signing up for seminars, going to conferences and events, seeking out mentorship, and more.

Even if it’s just to keep up with best practices in communication, email marketing, or release strategy, you will never find them resting on their laurels.

Chapter 3: Profit Leverage

Smart musicians are always looking for ways of turning their income into more income. They don’t blow their cash on alcohol and afterparties. They consider carefully how their financial resources can be leveraged, be it advertising, PR, saving up for their next release, or otherwise.

Chapter 4: Reinvesting

Smart musicians reinvest into their career. Their money goes towards better stage costumes, banners, lights, gear, websites or sales funnels, photos, branding, copy, and more.

If you’re the type to spend everything you’ve earned at a gig, there’s much you can learn from those who actively and aggressively reinvest in their careers.

Chapter 5: Opportunity

Most musicians tend to compete for the same festival and opening slots, as well as bar gigs and other opportunities. A smart musician might throw their hat in the ring, but they also create their own opportunities. They are always looking for opportunities to add value to people and places where their music fits in.

Chapter 6: Prioritization

A smart musician prioritizes what they work on day to day. They might spend some time on social media, but not before working on their website. They might work on their website, but not before sending an email to their list. And so on.

Smart musicians actively prioritize and ruthlessly triage. They put first things first in their day and set aside low-value tasks for later.

Chapter 7: Home Base

Most musicians tend to put all their eggs into the social media basket, not realizing that there are higher value tasks they could be engaged in.

Smart musicians know to prioritize home base. They build their website. They link up all their assets. They showcase their portfolio of work for others to see. They look for ways to take more ownership of their audience and work, instead of trying to minimize responsibility.

Chapter 8: Paying the Price

Many musicians look for ways to reduce costs. Haggle over price. Ask for a free lunch.

A smart musician isn’t afraid to invest. They might panic over having to spend $100 now, but will eventually grow into someone who drops $1,000 in a go, without thinking, when they see something worth investing in.

Smart musicians understand the value of quality goods and services and have a strong sense of self-worth.

Chapter 9: Leadership

Smart musicians know that they can make a difference in the lives of their fans, local communities, and even globally. They don’t shirk from responsibility or run from it. They actively seek out opportunities to grow, take on more responsibility, and fulfill on their commitments. As result, their bandwidth is always expanding.

Chapter 10: Intuition

Smart musicians are critical thinkers. That’s why they aren’t easily duped. They know how to listen to their intuition. They don’t just get their news from Google or mainstream media and take it for granted that they’re getting good information. They’re willing to dig deeper into the truth of every situation.

Chapter 11: Question Everything

Smart musicians always question everything. They realize that even the best-meaning coaches, experts, and gurus don’t necessarily know it all, no matter how qualified or experienced. They follow their intuition because they know their journey will be different from anyone else’s. They’re willing to experiment and try different strategies and tactics to verify their efficacy for themselves.

Chapter 12: Commitment

Once committed, smart musicians are unmovable. They are people of their word. They follow through and fulfill on their promises and create a Teflon reputation as result. They’re willing to make big financial commitments if they know there’s a payoff for them on the other end of it. They understand that everything will come back to them, so being cheap with others means someone else will be cheap towards them.

Chapter 13: Networking

Smart musicians understand that their best opportunities are going to come through people. Which is why they strive to be known, liked, and trusted, and find new people to connect with daily. They understand that it’s a numbers game, that they might be rejected, and they might not be able to make friends with everyone, but also know that breakthroughs in their career could be just two or three relationships and conversations away.

Chapter 14: Planning

A smart musician isn’t just thinking about tonight’s live stream. They’re always thinking ahead. Which is why they don’t settle for second best. They invest in quality goods and services. They set aside time for practice when they need it. They’re always thinking about how they can add value to others, because they know whatever they put out into the world is what’s going to come back to them.


And, of course, there’s a conclusion and links to some additional resources at the end of the eBook.

This is not a long eBook. I’m sure you could demolish it in one or two settings.

The eBook’s promise is artist empowerment. And while none of us are perfect, we will make mistakes, and our integrity will be broken at times, that just means we’re up to something in the world. And we don’t settle for second best.

I believe the eBook delivers on this promise by showing you what it would look like to grow, expand, and step up your game to meet and exceed your challenges.

So, if you’re ready to pick up your copy of The Renegade Musician eBook, which comes bundled with the digital magazine of the same name, you can either head on over to Gum.co/RenegadeMusician or davidandrewwiebe.com/Renegade.

This has been episode 233 of The New Music Industry Podcast. I’m David Andrew Wiebe, and I look forward to seeing you on the stages of the world.

212 – The Biggest Myth in Music Ever Told

212 – The Biggest Myth in Music Ever Told

In the music business, there are certain myths that continue to get perpetuated. They call forth a false sense of hope and fill us with frustration, disappointment, and resentment.

That’s what we’re going to be looking at in this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast.

Podcast Highlights:

  • 00:31 – Hope is not a strategy
  • 00:45 – The greatest myth in music
  • 01:07 – The exceptional few
  • 01:50 – Winning the lottery
  • 02:36 – Betting on yourself
  • 03:27 – Taking ownership
  • 04:05 – Connecting with your heart
  • 04:52 – Question everything
  • 05:30 – The miracle of taking responsibility
  • 05:51 – Unlock your true potential


Hey, it’s David Andrew Wiebe.

So, I’m sure you’ve heard before that hope is not a strategy.

Whether it’s sitting around and waiting for something to happen or refusing to take ownership of some aspect of your music career, there are approaches to music that just won’t work.

One of the biggest myths in music ever told is prevalent and alluring.

And that myth is that someone is going to come to save you.

We’ve seen the movies and TV shows. We’ve read the stories of our favorite artists. And it seems like, in many cases, somehow, someway, they just met the right person at the right time to take their music career forward.

Right off the bat, what many artists don’t recognize is that they’re only looking at the lives of the exceptional few who were discovered by an A&R rep or made it by some fateful aligning of the stars.

If you know an artist’s name, in large part, it’s by design. It’s the design of the record labels and the media who report on what they’re told to, and paid to, report on.

This may seem like a controversial statement, but once you unplug from The Matrix, you won’t be able to unsee it. Payola is still real, and it hasn’t gone anywhere.

There’s nothing wrong with aspiring to be like the exceptional few. But trying to replicate their story or journey is a fruitless pursuit.

There’s nothing wrong with aspiring to be like the exceptional few. But trying to replicate their story or journey is a fruitless pursuit. Share on X

Recently I talked about the fact that the average Spotify royalty rate is $0.00331 per stream. So far as I’m concerned, that’s not even a real amount of money.

What’s interesting about this number is that it probably represents your chances of being saved or discovered by an A&R rep.

Your chances of winning the lottery are quite slim, depending on the lottery. With Lotto 6/49, you have a 1 in 14 million chance. With Lotto Max, your chances are even worse, at 1 in 28.6 million.

But everyone still thinks they’re going to win the lottery, just as artists believe they’re going to snag that elusive, lucrative record contract.

I talked to some of my friends who basically said their only backup plan was to win the lottery. I was horrified.

All things being equal, I will bet on myself rather than gambling on the lottery or on a record contract.

I will make music, write books, build communities, websites, and businesses. I will invest. I will grow. I will become smarter and wiser, I will persevere through criticism, defeat, embarrassment, and failure. I will keep taking a chance on myself no matter what.

I don’t care what has or hasn’t happened to this point. The world cannot stop the unrelenting force of David Andrew Wiebe. I’m going to keep pounding on your door until you give me a chance. I don’t care how long it takes or how hard that path might be.

I can get what I want. I will not be denied.

What about you? Do you have that conviction about yourself? Do you believe in you? Will you take a chance on yourself, something you can control, versus taking a chance on the lottery, something that’s completely outside of your control?

This episode is about inspiration. It’s about empowerment. It’s about taking control of your tools and resources. It’s about taking ownership.

What part of your music career are you refusing to take ownership over? That’s the part that’s in need of serious evaluation because some part of you still believes your savior is coming.

What part of your music career are you refusing to take ownership over? That’s the part that’s in need of serious evaluation. Share on X

That was Musician Monster’s Greg Wilnau’s story as well. It took him a long time to realize it, but when he finally accepted that his destiny was in his own hands, things started to change for him and his career.

No doubt, things have been complicated here in 2020. They’ve been difficult. They’ve been weird.

But if you don’t believe in yourself, it’s because you’re still plugged into the media. You’re still believing what you’re being told. You’re under their control. You have no power over yourself whatsoever.

Turn off the TV. Turn off Netflix. Turn off your smartphone. And just sit with yourself. Understand who you are. What you were made for. Become present to your desires. You were made for the very things you desire. What you want, wants you!

What you want, wants you! Share on X

You will never become conscious to any of that without listening to your heart. You will never know what you know deep down without opening your heart again.

Being vulnerable is scary but it’s a gift. It’s a realization of your true potential. Not just your desires, which were always written on your heart. It’s a realization of what you’re capable of.

Learn to question everything. It’s healthy to do.

Learn to question everything. It’s healthy to do. Share on X

Because otherwise you’re in danger of believing everything. Accepting that things just are the way they are. Accepting that you have no power, and there’s nothing you can do about anything.

Do you want to know what that experience is like? Hell. Because hell has been defined as going through day after day with no change whatsoever.

So, what sustains the rut? What keeps the rut alive? It’s ourselves. It can’t be anything else. Because at any moment, we could choose to rise and face the music.

I know what I’m asking is hard. It’s not easy at all.

But it’s empowerment. A miracle happens when you can accept that everything that has happened to this point in your life is because of you.

That’s true empowerment, and I hate to be the messenger, but I haven’t found it anywhere else. Empowerment for me came from accepting that everything I’ve gotten and haven’t gotten to this point is because of me.

So, are you ready to unlock your true potential? Because that’s what we’re talking about here.

If so, we’ll welcome you to the community with open arms. And I’ve always got lots of free stuff to give away. All you’ve got to do is go to davidandrewwiebe.com/Join and choose whatever is there. Something will speak to you. Join the email list, where we reveal tips and strategies we don’t even reveal on our blog, and our blog is pretty stacked if I must say so myself.

This has been episode 212 of The New Music Industry Podcast. I look forward to seeing you on the stages of the world.

116 – Are There Any Alternatives to Music Entrepreneurship?

Do you feel like you could never be a music entrepreneur? Do you feel discouraged by this thought? Then this episode is for you.

In this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast, we try on the idea that there are no alternatives or options, that music entrepreneurship is indeed all there is.

Podcast Highlights:

  • 00:14 – Connection
  • 00:36 – “Music entrepreneurship is not for me”
  • 00:54 – Do you feel incapable?
  • 01:43 – Is risk taking not for you?
  • 02:28 – Are you too sensitive?
  • 03:10 – Do you feel disempowered?
  • 03:43 – Do you feel discouraged?
  • 04:24 – Is music entrepreneurship all there is?


You and I connected for a reason. It didn’t happen by accident.

Maybe you just listen to the podcast every week and never leave a comment or email me. Perhaps you never look at any of my products or books. But you keep listening to the show and you get something out of it.

I think that’s awesome. Keep listening. Even if I never hear from you, I know that you’re learning and growing, and that’s what matters to me.

But while I have your attention, I want to share something with you.

Recently, I had someone tell me that music entrepreneurship wasn’t for them.

So, I decided to give some thought as to why they felt that way.

I asked myself whether I was communicating this message properly. I wondered what it was that ultimately turned them off.

Did they see themselves as incapable of pursuing this path?

As far as I’m concerned, we are all on a path of growth. Some may tell you otherwise, but I don’t believe there’s a pinnacle or a summit to reach. I believe we should all adopt the mentality that we are lifelong learners, and that life is full of fresh and new discoveries every single day.

If for some reason you don’t feel qualified or capable yet, don’t worry – just keep growing. I think we all feel like imposters sometimes. I’ve felt the same way. There are many tensions I feel in my personal and work life – but I’ve been learning to embrace them because I know that’s where the growth happens.

So, it’s never too early to begin your journey. You’re not too young or too old, too small or too big, too white or too black… You aren’t too anything. You are perfectly capable exactly the way you are.

Did they feel like risk taking wasn’t for them?

I believe the best things in life are waiting for us on the other side of fear. I’ve experienced a lot of fear in my life. I even had a full-blown anxiety disorder in 2008. And, I’ve had to deal with iterations of the same anxiety in 2017, and even here in 2018.

And, I’m coming clean here – I still have many fears surrounding the opposite gender. There are subjects I avoid or have trouble broaching with women. I find it incredibly difficult at times to express myself around them, even though I always enjoy their company.

So, you shouldn’t feel like you need to be perfect to take risks. All you need to understand is that when you take a chance and put yourself out there, it’s rarely the giant you made it out to be, and there are rewards waiting for you on the other side of the fear.

Did they feel like they were too sensitive to adopt a tougher mindset?

Look, I’m about as sensitive as they come. Last night, I worked myself into a frenzy and ended up unleashing a violent rampage on my bed because of how things were going in my career and relationship life. No, things weren’t that bad. But I had made a mountain out of a molehill, as us humans tend to do.

There’s no way you’re too sensitive to be a music entrepreneur. Being sensitive is a gift, as it allows you to tap into how others are feeling and what they’re thinking. It enables you to be sensitive and empathetic to the needs of others. I can’t imagine a person more qualified to run a business than someone who understands others. You’ve got the makings of an amazing leader.

Did they feel disempowered?

For several years now, I’ve been encouraging musicians to think of themselves as entrepreneurs as opposed to starving artists. I’m not sure if there is a more empowering message I could share with you.

When you understand where the stereotype of a starving artist comes from, you soon realize it was typically based on people who were outright antisocial, had no interest in promoting their art, or even had a tendency towards self-sabotage.

Does that describe you? Probably not. So, you should feel empowered – you are already doing way more than those artists were ever willing to do for themselves and their careers.

Did they feel discouraged?

Have you ever listened to an interview with a successful artist who shares what they had to go through to get to where they are, only to say to yourself, “I could never do that”? Be honest – I admit that I’ve said this to myself many times before.

What you must understand is that your journey is uniquely yours. It won’t be like anyone else’s. Will there be obstacles and challenges ahead? Absolutely, and I’m always upfront about that. But if you’re passionate about what you do, you will find a way to move ahead with your projects and ideas.

We will all feel discouraged at times. But we can’t keep comparing our bloopers with someone else’s highlight reels. We’re not being fair to ourselves when we do that.

In closing, I want you to try on the idea that music entrepreneurship is all there is.

Go ahead – try it on. See how it feels.

If you’ve listened to the last couple of episodes of the podcast, then you should be familiar with this exercise already.

It might sound extreme, but I want you to try it on anyway. Let’s be perfectly honest here – the chances of you signing with a major label are incredibly slim. But, as I’ve shared before, independent success is available to all of us. We can all be successful on our own terms.

In episode 108 of the podcast, Jules Schroeder shared with us that the unconventional life is quickly becoming the conventional life. She hopes she lives to see the day when people go, “what unconventional life? This is just the way things are now.”

So, is it possible that music entrepreneurship is all there is? Is it possible that this will be the status quo in five, 10 or 20 years?

Unless you just want to make music as a hobby, then you should consider this possibility. You should try it on and see for yourself what’s there.

Closing the back door and making a commitment to yourself can be incredibly freeing. Try it for yourself. See how it feels to only be holding onto one possibility instead of living in a world of infinite possibilities. Does it give you hope? Do you feel encouraged?

How do you feel now?

Well, as always, I’m not going to close this episode without prompting you to check out The Essential Guide to Music Entrepreneurship, specifically the Pro Packs, which will be going away on January 1, 2019.

You can learn more at davidandrewwiebe.com/essential.

I hope you got something out of this, and I look forward to answering your comments in the show notes.

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