5 Essential Tips For Musicians On Handling Criticism
February 22, 2019
Peter Hill in Advice, Career, advice for musicians, music criticism, musicians

If you aim to become a famous musician, you want a careers booster, but you’re certainly going to face criticism whether you like it or not. Even if you aim towards the alternative scene and you don’t necessarily want huge success, you’re still going to face the critics.

Each and every artist has haters. The more popular you get, the more haters you’ll have and the louder they will get.  

Let’s take Jamie Dupuis as an example. He is a successful harp guitar player, who you either love or hate. I recently saw one of his videos posted by a Facebook page and couldn’t help but notice the comments:

“Sorry, this is something you’d hear in a hotel lobby or a lift.”

“Why has this pretentious twaddle been posted here?”

Some of these comments are worthy of ignoring. If someone calls you a pretentious twaddle, you clearly realize that your music is not their cup of tea and it doesn’t have to be. But the hotel lobby comment could make Dupuis wonder: maybe his style is too mellow and lacks excitement?

You must see the difference between useless and constructive criticism. Can you? It’s all in your own approach, really. It’s how you see the comments being directed at you.

Let’s go through 5 really effective tips that teach you how to handle criticism the right way.

    1. Make the Difference between Destructive and Constructive Criticism

Destructive criticism is aimed at your personality. Constructive criticism is aimed at your music.

Expressions like “pretentious twaddle” cannot be taken as constructive criticism. This kind of comment comes from someone who simply doesn’t like you.

If, on the other hand, you come across criticism that goes in depth and is only focused on your music, then it’s constructive. You can use such comments to improve your expression and address the weak points.

    2. Your First Instinct Will Shout Discouragement, But Don’t Listen to It

If there’s something you should ignore, it’s that inner voice telling you to give up.

If you found your creative expression through music, no one and nothing should push you away from that road. When you invest enough patience, time, and effort, you’ll only be getting better.

Maybe you’re still not good enough. That’s okay. That means you should work harder. Keep in mind that you’ll be facing criticism even when you’re at the peak of your career. There’s no way around it. So forget about giving up and believe in yourself a bit more.

    3. Industry Experts Are Not Right All the Time

Everyone keeps telling you to make contacts with industry experts and offer your recordings for a review. That’s important.

Still, you have to keep in mind that musical criticism cannot be objective by any means. Sure; they can talk about your technique from an objective point of view. But each criticism contains a subjective element that cannot be an absolute truth.

Aurora Olivier, career advisor from BestEssayTips, shares her insights: “I’ve seen many young musicians accepting criticism from critics who were relevant one or two decades ago. Some of them are still relevant, but most have no idea what works and what doesn’t work on today’s music scene. Yes; you need to make connections in the music industry, but you have to be careful who you connect with.”

When you face rejection from one critic, it’s not the end of the world. Remember: there’s always a subjective point of view in their attitude towards your music.

    4. Identify the Issue Being Addressed

What issue is the critic addressing? Is it a physical problem, such as posture or appearance? If this is the case, you don’t have to worry about it. You can work on those aspects. You could start working out or making efforts to improve your appearance. But you don’t have to do that. Your fans won’t like you for the facade. They will like you for being yourself.

Is it an audible problem, such as being off at certain spots? Now this is an issue that you do need to address. It could be a matter of technique, which you need to fix. But if you keep having the same issue with that song, it means it’s not the right type of song for you.

    5. Move On

The purpose of constructive criticism is not to put you off. You need psychological strength to hear what the person has to say, accept it or neglect it.

Oscar Wilde said “Criticism is the only reliable form of autobiography.” That’s true, since the destructive critique tells you more about the mindset of the critic than about the issue being criticized.

Accept criticism only when it specifically addresses something you can improve. In that case, you shouldn’t allow your ego to prevent you from seeing your flaws. Acknowledge them and work on them. You can only grow from there on.

Tony Kearns, HR of Essay Writing Land, said: “The only way to avoid criticism is to not share your music with the world. What’s the point of talent then? When you’re ready to share it, you should be ready to face people who criticize it.”



Peter Hill is one of the best essay writers on the Best Essays. He is a socially active person, likes traveling and photo/video editing. He finds himself in writing for writing services Essay Geeks and EssayWritingLab. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.

Article originally appeared on Music Think Tank (http://www.musicthinktank.com/).
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