Oakland, CA — Don’t you hate a “let-me-slide-in-for-the-F,” or a “let-me-get-a-verse-for-free,” type of person? These freeloading, transactional types annoy the hell out of creatives because they only hit them up whenever they want something, but don’t show love and support for the movement the artist is building. Please don’t be that person. Now, if for some reason, you are this type of person, I’m here to help you out.
You must understand that artists put a ton of time, energy and resources into perfecting their crafts, so if you want to truly support — make sure you show an understanding for that part of the game. I’ve created a mini guide on how to properly support your fellow artists/creatives in ways that won’t turn people off and will help you build genuine relationships. You just have to follow these guidelines and wait for your time to shine because artists do notice these types of real supporters.
Be an Active Social Media Supporter
An easy follow, like, comment or re-post shows a lot of support to an artist. It only takes one second and shows that you’re paying attention. If you think about it, the average person is on their phone for about three hours a day, so you literally have no excuses to not show love to your fellow artists. At the end of the day, it’s the small things that go a long way so if your only supporting when it’s convenient for you — people are definitely going to notice.
Don’t Be Cheap
Keep in mind that up-and-coming artists put a lot of time and money into their craft. The last thing you should be asking an artist, producer or entrepreneur is for ANYTHING for free, just because. Especially if you’re not one of his or her Day Ones. Don’t be that person who only hits them up when they have a show or event that you want to attend for the F. Buy a ticket and show love! Pulling up to a show knowing you could have gotten in for free, but still bought a ticket anyways, shows real support. The artist probably has 100+ people hitting their phone to get in for free, which shouldn’t be what they’re focusing on. Their first priority should be their show and not accommodating you. Show real support and it will always come back around.
Dealing with Clout
It can be true that once an artist gets a little taste of clout they can turn into a d***head. However, that may not always be the case so try not to jump to conclusions. If you feel like someone that you’ve known for a while who is gaining some new success is changing or isn’t as present in your life — try and be patient and look at the bigger picture. They could have a lot going on and are preoccupied with responsibilities that come from building up their artistry. Just because you don’t speak to someone as frequently as you’re used to doesn’t mean they don’t FWU anymore. They might just be focused on getting their career to a solid place and grinding. Once artists pop off they tend to go through a lot of changes with money, relationships, and overall life shifts. Stardom can drive an artist out of their mind. As a friend and part of someone's support system — it is your job to keep them on track and focused. Everyone needs to know they have real supportive people on their team. Offer ways you can contribute to their cause and likely they’ll return the favor when the time is right. Keep your mind on the prize and not the bullsh*t.
Be Open to Collaboration
If you are a fellow artist, collaborations can be a great opportunity to build on a relationship. But make sure you’re approaching it in the correct way. Don’t be the person who thinks you’re the s**t and everything needs to happen on your terms. Use collaborations as an opportunity to make genuine connections with other artists and be open to how they work too. You never know where a partnership can lead!
Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is
Whether it’s buying merch, downloading/streaming their record, or buying tickets to their events — buy whatever your homies are selling to help build their brand. Showing up to a show and buying merch shows support as well as promotes his/her personal brand. The money raised from buying merch goes directly to the artists and their establishment. But the easiest way to put your homie on is to just slap their song — download it, stream it, keep it on repeat and run those numbers up. Slap their stuff at any party, kick-it spot, or in the car. If someone likes what their hearing, put them on! Tell them where they find his/her music.
Now that I’ve given you all the insight, you have no excuse to not show real support to all the artists in your life. Take the game, move accordingly and be a real one.