When I think about the professional musician, I like to break down opportunity into day job and night job. The night job is the dream – rock and roll stardom, touring, selling records, award shows, bodyguards, fawning fans, public meltdowns, etc.
Being more pragmatic as a person – I have spent much of my career on the day job part of this industry (and that’s not just you giving guitar lessons).
Music Publishing to me is the day job part of the business – regardless of your status as a performer. Even the big folks love the mailbox money of publishing. As an independent artist, I think it’s even more important.
Publishing, with all it’s complexities, still has the opportunity to create income streams for artists at all levels – especially if you are up for creating alternate types of content. All music shown on television and the web around the world earns public performance income.