Why Few Musicians Get Most of the Best Gigs

I was calling musicians to play for my Majestic Band and noticed something: There are just a few musicians working in DFW that seem to have all the gigs. These guys are great, don’t get me wrong, but aren’t there a bunch of amazing musicians around here? With North Texas’ College of […]

Best Gigs - Drums


How To Get More Paid Gigs Through Better Networking 1

3 Easy Steps to Follow Up Like a Pro. Networking is an important skill for musicians to master. More so than other industries, a musician’s ability to connect with others directly impacts their ability to get more gigs. In our current “connection economy” networking is the currency of choice. I […]

5 Overlooked Ways Musicians Can Attract Better Gigs 1

Plus, gain a more engaged tribe of fans. If you’re like most musicians, you hope that your music stands out so much that someone asks you to play a high profile gig. That feeling we get when someone approaches after a set and says they want to book you for […]


Pay Day

How To Charge More For Your Gigs With Confidence 2

Plus, 5 Questions you should ask before giving a price quote for your band.  It’s true that you have to prove yourself at times, but the principal remains the same – as musicians, we are providing a value and a service. We should be compensated fairly for that service. It’s […]

How To Track Music Expenses And Get Paid Like A Pro 1

Why I switched to FreshBooks and opened a business checking account. There comes a time on any gig or working situation when someone hits you with a new policy or other formality. The difference between the guy who gets called back and the one who doesn’t, usually depends on their […]

Tracking Expenses


How to Create a Music Career You Love With Smarter Goals 

Plus, 6 tips to achieve your New Year’s Resolutions It’s that time of year when everyone starts thinking of goals and resolutions. And, usually a few weeks or months down the road, we’ve totally forgotten them or veered off drastically. This isn’t because we’re terrible at following through or just […]

015 RMP: Can You Really Have A Thriving Music Career & Strong Family Life?

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Today, I have percussion instructor, Jose Aponte. José is a senior lecturer at the University of North Texas in the Percussion and Jazz Studies departments, where he teaches drumset and Latin percussion. In addition to his private lesson studio work, José is the director of UNT’s Afro-Cuban Ensemble, Brazilian Ensemble, and Latin Jazz Lab Band.


In this episode, you’ll learn: 

  • Challenge your comfort zone
  • Practice your weaknesses first
  • Serve the clients, not your ego
  • Prioritize Your Time
  • Self Care
  • Take time to rest
  • Learn to say “No”
  • Ask for help

Also, Jose’s Pro Tips:

  • Arrive early
  • Dress Appropriately
  • Prepare in advance


  • Find balance in the good and the bad
  • Be honest with yourself
  • Be present in your art and your family
  • Communicate openly with your spouse

Finally, learn to:

  • take care of your craft
    • Take the 66 Day Practice Habit Challenge
  • avoid the artist’s trap

For more info:

José has performed with such artists as Giovanni Hidalgo, Emil Richards, Carlos Guedes, Poncho Sanchez, Batacumbele, Gino Vanelli, Brian Bromberg, Lyle Mays, Andy Narell, David Rudder, Relator, Fred Hamilton, Dan Haerle, Tracy Thornton, Lian Teague, Airto Moreira, and Michael Spiro.

Aponte is an active member of the Dallas/Fort Worth musical scene as a freelance performer and studio musician with groups such as Fifo and Citizens of the World Colombian Jazz Group, Fifo and his Afro Bacanos Salsa Band, John Murphy Jazz Trio, singer/songwriter Tania Cordobes, David Lee Schloss’s Caravan, Kalimbe World Jazz Group, Island Boogie Caribbean Band, Justin Cash Jazz Fusion Trio, Tito Charneco’s Diaspora Jazz Group and his own projects (José Aponte and Caribe Club Latin Jazz Quintet, Batuque Brazilian Jazz Trio, and Brasuka Brazilian Jazz Group).

José is an artist/clinician for Pearl drums/percussion, Evans drum heads, Pro-Mark sticks and Sabian cymbals.

What did you think about the show? In what ways can you apply today what we shared in this interview? Share your thoughts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, or Twitter.

Like this episode? Please, share it with a friend. The best way to keep this podcast going is to get more people to listen and subscribe. So, share this with your buddies!

Thanks for listening.

Rip Phelan

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10 High Performance Habits

I came across this list a few years ago and posted it next to my desk. I can say that I implement these habits often. However, with the ever-changing demands of life, it’s easy to forget to rely on positive habits. Read through these and find one to try out […]

Multi-tasking is not your friend.

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Podcast 013 – How to Keep Better Records and Save Money!

Season 2, Episode 1. How to Keep Better Records to Save Money! What expenses should you track to keep your music career safe come tax season. Welcome everybody to a new episode of the Rip’s Music Business Podcast: Where we Make Your Music Your Business. This marks episode 13 and […]