“How do I get in the game?”

Probably the most asked question I’ve ever received from fellow artists trying to make it into this heaven and hell we call “The Music Industry.”

But what is the game exactly? The game is the ever-turning roulette table at a casino, inhabited by egomaniacs and insecure men (and women) with a lot of money and power. Based on that description, why would one want to voluntarily enter into a relationship with these types of people? Because regardless of what actually drives those at the helm of the game, there’s a possibility that they can help you get closer to your dream of releasing your art to the public, in a BIG way.

“The game will change you.”

I’ve been spinning in the roulette wheel for many years and have found myself skipping over different slots that may end up being my final destination. Anything from chance interaction with my childhood musical heroes to full-on studio sessions and collaborations with the world’s most beautiful and talented people. The game entices the most strong willed… and if you play it right, it can provide for you and/or your family, while giving you the chance to get those words and melodies out of your head and into someone’s MP3 or streaming player.

Imagine knowing a 15-year-old Rihanna and being a part of her demo tape before she signs with Jay-Z two weeks later!? Imagine meeting Jay-Z for the first time six months later, and him bringing you onstage as his special guest in your home town?! Getting to know LL Cool J in a private back room of Phillipe’s, with Raekwon present, and LL telling you about the profound respect he has for founding CANADIAN hip-hop artists. Touring Australia with Pitbull, Sean Paul, Kelly Rowland, Akon and… man. The game can be the best thing in the world. It’s almost like finding yourself in the middle of a real-life movie where you are a co-star amongst the best actors (that happen to be musicians).

My advice to any artist seeking to “get into the game” is to make sure you take note of who you are before you enter. It will change you (anyone who says otherwise is a liar). The challenge is to let it change you for the better. Learn from it and take every obstacle as a lesson that you can springboard from to become more savvy, while you maneuver through the snakes and ladders.

How do you get in the game? Very carefully.