Conversations: Musicians need to be paid too

Hello people of the page. I am on a chatty mood today. I always get a kick out of having an interesting conversation with someone who is  into music. I would like to share a very interesting topic. This concerns everyone. Whither you are a blogger, instrument maker or musicians, I am sure this worth talking about.

This link will further explain this issue: I think Connie and I made an interesting craic. Peter also joined. Read further.

Connie Tygrett Crone: Is it true that musicians won’t be paid for performing at the Olympics :(? Unless the entire staff and committee is volunteer, that doesn’t seem like a fair expectation.


Baxter Labatos:  I think people who organized the Olympics have enough money to fund the performers. This is an insult to musicians who worked hard for their talents to get where they are now.


Connie Tygrett Crone: Right Baxter. It’s hard enough for even the very best and hardest working musicians to earn a good standard of living. This makes me feel really sad.


Baxter Labatos: It is tragic Connie. These are hard times for musicians. And guess who are those getting more money?

Connie Tygrett Crone: Yes, I believe professional musicians are having the absolute worst of this economy. Fans are holding into their cash; there is less expendable income spent on entertainment such as concerts. And there’s just a huge population that refuse to pay for any music… period… including all those .mp3 files they’ve illegally ripped. It’s a sad state of affairs for musicians. It’s to the point where only the wealthy can afford to play music. I never even realized what a hard time most musicians were having, until I started playing the fiddle and noticed how hard some of my professional music friends were working. Everyone seems to take musicians for granted, which shouldn’t happen… they are a big part of all of our lives, adding beauty, sorrow, and fire. They do indeed write the soundtrack to our lives in a universal language. They need more money, not less, or even worse, none at all :(!!!


Connie Tygrett Crone

 Patrick Santucci: While there does seem to be a double standard here, remember that the exposure you get by performing at the Olympics far surpasses any monetary compensation. Just ask the athletes. Speaking only for myself, I had the opportunity to sing at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles and stupidly turned it down. I have regretted it ever since. In hindsight, if I’d accepted the invitation it might have launched a completely different career path for me. As it is, I can’t watch the opening/closing ceremonies without thinking about what might have been.


Baxter Labatos: You know , you said them all..took the words out of my mouth. “they are a big part of all of our lives, adding beauty, sorrow, and fire.” So true!


Connie Tygrett Crone: The exposure is a factor, granted that the musicians and singers are credited or professionally recorded at the venues. I think most of them will be putting much more work into it than anything they ever receive in return. I hope that the Olympic Committee will pay airfare, lodging and expenses. I guess that they can write off a month’s worth of lost income on their taxes. Indeed it’s an honor to be invited to play such an event; but accolades and honors do not usually pay the bills unless you hit it really big time. Some musicians and singers have stunning talent, and hardly anyone knows of them.

Baxter Labatos:I think a  lot of people(not all) nowadays have attention deficit disorder which is another factor. They can hardly remember unless something is really shocking. I doubt that musicians will ever get something financially rewarding out of this in spite of performing at such a big venue. If you are the only performer then that is something. But if you are one of the many, there is a big chance that your spot wont really make a difference. But that is just me.

You know Connie this thread has gotten me into thinking. There are those who claim that being an artist means performing or creating art out of love and not for profit. This is true for people who have second jobs as Doctors or Engineers , and those who just want to tap into their artistic side by playing music or painting. Nothing wrong with that because it is about passion. But what about musicians who studied and dedicate their lives for music? Obviously art is not just a past time for them but also a livelihood. I don’t think you can ask a doctor to cure patients for free.

Connie Tygrett Crone: Although really conscientious about the plight of artists now, I was unaware that most professional musicians in America didn’t even have health care insurance. I never really thought about it, until I started fiddling and following some musicians. It brought me to tears. People should be aware that these artists are often really struggling to make ends meet.


Baxter Labatos: If you have the power to make changes, what do you think should be done?
Connie Tygrett Crone: Baxter, the only thing I know to do is to spread the word… live music performances need our support. The power of the pen is also a mighty tool. I think this topic would make an excellent subject for your Celtic music blog! Hint… hint… 😉


Baxter Labatos: Hahahahaha there!!! I finally got my one on one with you. Of course it is an interesting topic Connie 😉


Connie Tygrett Crone: Just for the record, lol, I’m better for the craic than I am for fiddling. Too bad nobody pays or gives awards for that… although I do score the occasional free beer ;)!


Baxter Labatos: I think you made a great craic today!


Connie Tygrett Crone is a fiddler and is also an active member of  Tradconnect


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