Everyone in their lifetime has probably dreamed of becoming a singer or performer.
It seems exciting until you find out it’s not all that it’s “cracked up to be.”
Learn the pros and cons of being a singer.
Pros of Being a Singer
1. Stress release
Whether you’re singing for the fun of it or getting paid for it, this activity exercises your respiratory system.
As a result, it relaxes your muscles and provides stress release.
If you also believe in the lyrics you’re belting out to the world, it also helps you emotionally process your feelings.
If you sing a happy song, it can keep your mind off your troubles too.
Sometimes, you might not know how to express your feelings.
Maybe you’re too shy to tell a person you love him or her.
If so, putting words into music and sharing them with someone special can let them know how you feel.
You can also sing songs that represent personal or spiritual causes you believe in.
For instance, maybe you want to express how you feel about making sure children around the world have enough to eat.
Otherwise, perhaps you just experienced a tragic loss and want to sing about it.
You can share your story through songs you wrote yourself or songs other people wrote.
3. Personal worship
Some people consider singing as an expression of love for the one they worship.
It can open up the channels of communication, and it’s a form of reference to your creator (if you believe in that).
4. Career opportunities
Maybe after you’re done touring the world, you can become a teacher.
Otherwise, you could make a decent living as a lounge singer when you’re semi-retired.
It’s also possible to become a tenured college professor with your singing or music performance experience.
In addition, you could move into audio production and even start your own recording label.
Otherwise, you could become a band or choir director.
5. Exciting lifestyle
Some people enjoy the fast-paced lifestyle of a singing career.
You end up making friends with all kinds of interesting people. It’s almost never boring.
There’s always dancing, parties, dinners, and social opportunities.
6. Chance to travel
Some of the people you meet might come from all kinds of places all around the world.
You can use your funds from performing to see other countries too.
That’s because you’re going there to perform anyway, so why not?
It’s one way to see the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Taj Mahal in India, or the Grand Canyon in the United States, for instance.
(Of course, you also have to have the time to do that in between practice, warm-ups, and performances though.)
7. Improved well-being (good therapy)
If you work as a music therapist, or you’re learning to use music therapy to enhance your own quality of life, singing helps.
It will help you keep depression and anxiety at bay, for instance.
When using music with your clients, it can increase their enjoyment, and you can incorporate singing into any caretaking you choose.
For instance, many activity assistants in nursing homes lead singalong groups for residents and visitors.
Even when singing in a nightclub or at a concert hall, you help people forget about their troubles.
At least for those few hours, you connect with your audience, and everything feels okay.
Other times, it is also a healing experience and allows release in people watching you and participating in your singing exercises.
8. Excellent teaching tool
Teachers also use music quite a bit in their classrooms, and it seems to make the day go by much faster.
It can make learning more fun too.
It works for just about any subject too and having your students sing songs helps them remember facts.
9. Creates togetherness
If you’ve had people join you in song on long road trips or around the campfire, you create togetherness.
It’s the same when you motivate people at a concert when you’re performing and when the audience sings along with you.
It forms a connection between the audience and you.
10. Combats shyness
If you’re naturally a reserved person, you may not know how to break the ice with people.
However, you can sometimes open up to them through your music.
When you do, it will make people want to ask you about the songs you perform.
It’s definitely a conversation piece — your music or the music of other composers you sing.
You provide them with interesting topics to talk about when meeting them after you’re finished performing.
Sometimes, you may feel good about yourself after you perform well too, and you get compliments.
You get to be the center of attention for a few minutes, which there’s nothing wrong with as long as you don’t get swept away by fame.
Cons of Being a Singer
1. Many temptations (for secular singers)
Not all singers face harsh temptations.
It depends on the type of singing you do and where you do it.
If you’re a rockstar that travels the world, for example, you may encounter drugs and alcohol and constant partying.
That may take a toll on your health after a while.
Temptations to “hook up” with random people could also destroy your romantic, long-term relationship.
Local singers, on the other hand, go home to their families and spouses every night.
2. Lack of sleep (maybe)
To make ends meet, you may have to play the night before at a club until 2 a.m.
Then, you may have to be up and ready to sing at a wedding that starts the next day at 10 a.m.
You never know what your schedule will be like.
If you’re touring multiple cities, you might have to drive or ride 10-12 hours a day.
Sometimes, you may only get a few hours of sleep if no one respects “quiet times).
3. Unpredictable earnings (Unexpected payment delays)
So many things can go wrong when planning your performance schedule.
Maybe one of your band members, dancers, or backup singers gets sick.
Someone could suddenly end up in an accident and is in the hospital.
Otherwise, tragedies or disasters may cause the venue where you plan to sing to close down.
This can cause unexpected drops in earnings.
4. Loneliness (away from family, and friends)
Unless your entire family tours with you, professional singing can be a lonely life.
You could end up not seeing your children or spouse for weeks or months when on the road.
Maybe the only time you talk to your siblings or parents is over the phone and only see them about once a year.
A different kind of loneliness also occurs as you question who’s really your friend at times.
Some people only want to be around you because you’re a popular musician, for instance.
You especially become “well-liked” by shallow people if you’re rich and have connections to all the A-list clubs.
That will leave you lonely at the end of the day if they don’t know the real you – lonely even though you have “groupies.”
You also may not know who you can trust not to steal your identity or assets – or set you up for crimes you didn’t commit. It’s a lonely and risky life, really.
5. Performing in dangerous places
It’s important to research the bars, clubs or restaurants, cafes, and auditoriums where you plan to perform.
You could end up in a neighborhood where cops frequent and drive-by shootings occur, for instance. Be careful.
6. Travel (and other) expenses
Even if you make thousands of dollars per show, the expenses add up fast.
The gas alone could take up half your income.
Then, you have to divide your earnings between other performers and stage crew, managers, and rest accommodations.
The venues where you perform may also take a cut.
It’s not cheap being a singer or musician.
That doesn’t even include the expensive on-the-road meals and extras, such as cigarettes or alcohol if you get into that sort of thing.
7. Self-funded health insurance
You will have to make sure you can find a way to pay for your own health insurance if you work as a singer full-time.
Many options are available to you if you set yourself up with a group plan once you’re an established corporation, but it can take you a while to establish that stability.
To make enough money, you may have to hold down at least one part-time job to fund your health insurance coverage.
8. Little privacy
If you become a celebrity, your personal life is on display for everyone to see.
They will want to know the names of your spouse and children, and they’ll keep an eye on what you’re wearing.
Someone might leak information you don’t want anyone to know, which could lead to dangerous stalking.
Pros and Cons of Being a Singer – Summary Table
|Pros of Being a Singer||Cons of Being a Singer|
|1. Stress release||1. Many temptations (for secular singers)|
|2. Self-expression||2. Lack of sleep (maybe)|
|3. Personal worship||3. Unpredictable earnings (Unexpected payment delays)|
|4. Career opportunities||4. Loneliness (away from family, and friends)|
|5. Exciting lifestyle||5. Performing in dangerous places|
|6. Chance to travel||6. Travel (and other) expenses|
|7. Improved well-being (good therapy)||7. Self-funded health insurance|
|8. Excellent teaching tool||8. Little privacy|
|9. Creates togetherness|
|10. Combats shyness|
Should You Become a Singer?
Singing can provide you with the personal fulfillment you may not experience in any other line of work.
If you have potential, you should have no problem earning money either.
If you feel singing is your destiny and can’t be happy doing anything else, becoming a singer is right for you.
On the other hand, it does require a huge sacrifice, including less time with friends and family and your personal life.
You can, however, become a local singer and still see your family.
That would probably be the best sacrifice if you don’t want to stay single for the rest of your life.
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