No Plan B

Episode #2 – There is a great quote from Will Smith that says, there is no plan B, that having a plan B only distracts from plan A.

As I look back at my musical career I realize that this is the exact mindset that I have had. Being a musician is a difficult career path, there is lots of competition and it’s not the steady 9-5 job that a majority of people settle for.

My love for music really began to blossom as a teenager when I got my first guitar and was hooked on guitar players like Eddie Van Halen and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin

My dad also had a big influence on me as I was constantly surrounded by great classic rock music by bands such as The Doobie Brothers, Neil Diamond, Supertramp, Bob Seger, and The Rolling Stones.

After my career as a baseball player ended I made the commitment that I was going to dedicate my life to music.

This lead me to studying music at the local community college, then to an undergraduate degree from San Diego State University, and then a teaching assistant position at the University of Southern California where I got my Master of Music in Studio/Jazz Guitar.

After school I sent 15 years in Los Angeles as a working musician. In order to keep my dream alive as a musician I worked in a diverse amount of settings that included playing in original and cover bands, studio and touring work, composer of music for TV and film, and playing a wide variety of instruments including guitar, ukulele, singing, banjo, pedal steel, mandolin and drums.

I also was a producer, written and published guitar and ukulele books, and run education website teaching people how to play guitar and ukulele. I have been very fortunate to work with some great artists such as Weezer, Josh Groban, Christopher Tin, Robbie Krieger, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. I also have a passion and dedication to education and helping people learn the craft of music.

Even though I have achieved a lot of success in my career it was never an easy ride. I had to do whatever it took to make my dreams a reality.

Although at times I felt like it would be easier if I settled and took a more “steady” or “traditional” job like becoming a lawyer or contractor, I never did because I knew that it would take away or even kill my career.

I even got very close a few times at getting a full time college teaching job, although I was disappointed at the time, I realized that if I had those jobs they would have taken away from the many opportunities that came my way.

What do you have to do? The first thing you have to do is find out what you are passionate about. The second thing is that you have to decide and make the decision that this is what you are going to do with your life. Third, you have to put all your heart and soul into it and never look back.

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Music by Per Kjeller http://www.perkjellermusic.com

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