This is an excerpt from my book “The Songwriters Survival Guide”, Chapter 8:
You are the CEO, Become The Leader Of Your Career
True story: I worked closely with songwriter, producer, and musician Jamie Houston for over nine years. I met him in Nashville right before he moved to LA in 1992. He had been waiting tables, writing songs, and making connections, and had decided to move to LA to pursue songwriting. A year later, I signed him to his first publishing deal.
From the beginning, I could tell that Jamie was a very quick learner who was inherently good at business and also really great at predicting the future. When he started to earn money from songwriting, he treated every cut as if it could be his last, saving and investing wisely. On my suggestion, he hired a business manager immediately to make sure that, from the very start, he was pointing himself in the right direction.
The music business can be so up and down: you can make $1 on one song and $1,000,000 on the next, so saving up for a rainy day is key.
Jamie brings consciousness to his business practices so that he is protected and isn't caught off-guard when things don’t work out. He asks the right questions sothat he understands the choices he needs to make.
He also carries all of these skill sets over when he is developing artists, teaching them not only about the creative side but making sure they understand the business. He is paying it forward!
When it came time to hire a lawyer, a business accountant, and a manager, Jamie hired wisely and has the same team in place to this day. I have watched him balance his career and personal life as he has grown from a young man with aspirations to be a part of the music business, to a successful songwriter/producer, husband, and father.
Jamie is a great leader by the example he sets in his creative, business and personal life.