The Roadmap for the Modern Music Creator - Part 1

Clarify your path to long-term artistic success.

When you start getting really good at music, the thought occurs to you…

‘Maybe I could make a living making music!’

The next thought is, ‘how do you do that?’

The music industry is quite confusing and counterintuitive. And to make it even more challenging, the most common story out there about how people become successful in music is that they ‘get discovered’. 

Gimme a break.

Just one shot, that is all it takes…


The reality is, to have a long career and enjoy a successful business that you own, you have to be an entrepreneur.

Maybe there was once a golden age where record labels just had to discover an artist and then the artist magically ended up with a long, fruitful career.

I don’t believe it.

I believe that, in the long run, the quality of your life directly correlates to the discipline you have to continuously bring your life back into balance.

Life’s challenges will always throw us out of balance, and one of the biggest threats to the prolific artist is that, as they dive head first into the business side of music, they lose balance in other areas. This often disrupts their ability to create their best artistic work.

Ask any creator, the commercial side can suck the fun out of making music, and if artists don’t maintain balance, the magic inspiration that got them there in the first place often disappears.

I have now been working for about 8 years in the music industry directly with insanely talented artists who are facing these struggles daily. And for 7 years before that I was facing those struggles myself as a creator. As I learned more and more about the industry, I realized why it was so overwhelming to try to navigate the complexities and identify a clear path. For years I thought:

If only I had some kind of roadmap that clearly showed what it looks like for creators to succeed in the modern music industry… but everything is so complicated, how would that ever be possible?

- Logan’s Brain

Then, during the COVID lockdowns I found myself with a lot of free time to revisit the idea of making a ‘Music Creator Roadmap’. This is what I came up with:

I know, it is a bit overwhelming.

Imagine how it felt for me to dig all of this out of my head! No wonder music creators get so overwhelmed by all that we have to do.

I have previously shared the roadmap with many members of the HOME Community, but this is the first time that I am publishing it for free on the internet.

This is the first in a series of weekly newsletters that explains how the roadmap is designed and how to use it to build your own roadmap for strategic development and increased success as a music creator.

So how does the Music Creator Roadmap work?

The first thing you need to understand is that it is a flow chart. A flow chart is defined as:

“a diagram of the sequence of movements or actions of people or things involved in a complex system or activity.”

Oxford 2023

The goal of a flow chart is to break down different paths and follow them toward different outcomes.

There are three paths that we can follow on the Music Creator Roadmap:

  1. The Touring Performer

  2. The Creative Artist

  3. The Writer-Producer

The outcome that we are working toward in our flow chart is MONEY 💸

At the bottom of the roadmap, you will see three boxes showing the goal has been completed. You have earned money as a music creator. In the diamond shapes just above the boxes, you will find the most common revenue streams that each path should focus on generating.

I should note that these are not ALL of the ways to make money from music, but the ones I felt were most important for the modern creator to focus on.

Now let’s jump back up to the top of the roadmap.

If you remember from the beginning of this post, I mentioned that the whole journey begins when the aspiring creator has the thought:

I want to make a living making music.

(every musician who thinks they are great)

So the roadmap starts there at the top left corner of the graphic. To the right of that statement, you will see an arrow that leads you toward choosing which of the three paths is best for you.

But wait…

There’s another arrow that points straight down toward the bottom of the page. Here are a few quotes that appear on the page that we should examine before I explain why there is seemingly another path:

Your biggest challenges are your own mindset and limiting beliefs.

There are plenty of people who want to invest money in projects they believe will be successful.

If you believe in your talent enough to treat it like a serious business, other people will too.

The point that I am making here is that sometimes things do magically align…

Someone writes a song that becomes a viral sensation, someone meets a hungry and ambitious manager at just the right time, someone finds the right company to invest money in their project…

These ‘shortcuts’ do indeed happen, and the best way that you can increase your chances of moving faster toward your goals is by cultivating an empowered, positive mindset. If you want to understand more about that, check out my recent post - Why Mindset Matters.

The paradox is that an empowered mindset doesn’t think that it needs that lucky break. An empowered mindset is driven by purpose and truly believes that music is that purpose.

That level of belief makes others believe too!

So that’s why that part of the flow chart ends at ‘Gatekeepers’. If you are going to play the game of the traditional music industry, the game where you ‘get discovered’, then you are opting into the gatekeeper dynamic.

Check your mindset before you approach those opportunities. If you are needy, they will be able to sense it a mile away. If you truly feel like you are bringing massive value to the table, they can sense that too.

Keep your mindset focused on creating and sharing massive value, and that attitude will attract the right opportunities to you.

But you have to have the goods to back it up. The bar of excellence is so much higher than most artists think. Here in Nashville, the city is overflowing with the world’s best musicians, songwriters, vocalists and producers. You can’t fake that level of talent. But talent alone does not create long successful careers. Long term strategic thinking does, like I pointed out in The Number One Reason Most Artists Fail’.

Long term strategic thinking means that you will be constantly learning and iterating from your lessons. As it says toward the top right corner of the roadmap:


Focus on becoming the person that can achieve the highest goals you have for yourself.

The key word is ‘becoming’… it is an endless game. There is no finish line!

Just clarify your goals and move closer toward them by developing the skills and gaining the resources you need. And remember, the most important resources are human resources.

The majority of your time and energy will be focused on building the skills or acquiring the resources that you need to achieve excellence and financial sustainability on your chosen path.

In next week’s newsletter, I will dive deeper into the three distinct paths that music creators can follow and how to choose the best one for your own career.

Each path requires a unique set of skills and resources, and that lack of clarity is what holds most people back from fulfilling their potential. People are either not prepared to play the game, or they are playing the wrong game altogether.

Are you playing the right game? The one that is best suited to your unique gifts, talents and strengths?

Familiarize yourself with the Music Creator Roadmap, and tune in next week as we take a deeper dive into choosing the path that is best for you.

👉 Download the Music Creator Roadmap 👈