The following is a list of skills and characteristics the author believes a musician must obtain or posses in order to become a professional musician I.E Independent A. I have used the characteristics and skills of entrepreneurs as a reference point.
1. Must come from a musical background
Although not essential it is favourable that a musician learnt music from an early age.
2. Must be hard working and dedicated. The amount of work and time needed to become a professional musician is enormous. Therefore anybody wishing to do so must have a very strong love for music. Practicing everyday should not feel like work but more of a leisure activity. Anyone serious about being a professional musician should be practicing at least two to three hours per day.
3. Must have a certain amount of Talent
Although lack of talent can be made up for through drive and dedication a person should have a small amount of talent to work from in the first place.
4. Must be able to take a lot of knocks
Any musician who has said he has never had a bad gig is a liar. U2 played to two people for there first gig. Things will always go wrong, strings break, feedback occurs, the list is endless. So anyone wishing to succeed in the industry should be able to pick themselves back up and stay focused. Tenacity and courage are required at all times.
5. Must be good with people and have an amiable personality
Although this is not essential it will help a musician who is starting out. At a grassroots level networking is vitally important in the industry. Meeting with other musicians helps build relationships which may lead to support slot gigs and valuable advice.
In my own personal experience...