There are some steps you should consider
Write or Co-write 100 Songs
Songwriting is key; great way to make money in music. Look up Music Publishing and PROs (BMI, ASCAP) 20% of those songs might fit "your sound" - that's okay
Branding is Everything
Sonic Branding - finding your sound Style Branding - finding your look Get your act down; your DNA Be authentic in an entertaining way People hear what they see
Record 10 Songs
as cheaply as possible! You may end up throwing them all away It's about finding your signature sound And that takes time, experimentation & experience Be patient!
Develop 12 Cities (only)
Go deep; not wide Until you have Tour Support $$ Spend time in those cities; make friends Get to know the home town artists & bands
Catch A Wave
Doesn't matter how great a surfer you are Without a wave, you are nothing As an artist, what wave can you catch?
Whether you want to or not...
You are going to have to become a marketing maniac Sorry.
What is your Cause?
Your burning desire Your passion How you are going to impact the world Many will not represent an artist these days unless the artist is actively engaged in Causes
Connect with your Audience
Being good is not good enough You have to Connect! There's lots of ways to connect. Willie Nelson was signing everything after his show 82 and still connecting!
Ending with a cliche: It Takes A Village
And it really does No one does it on their own. No One. Build your family; your infrastructure Treat them right For there will be times...