12 Ways to be a Completely Bitter and Miserable Musician

Too many people fail to see the bigger picture of life as a musician and the miserable state of the industry. If you are one of these people and catch yourself feeling in some way cheerful, stop right away and follow this simple 12 step plan to guarantee your return to a completely horrid existence on this miserable rock.

Warning: Contains strong language.

If you don’t like that, then you should probably still read on anyway as it will just give you more reasons to be pissed off.

Without further ado.

1. Whine and complain

In your quest for ongoing professional misery it is imperative that you bitch and moan on a continual basis, especially about things that are out of your control. Unfortunately the world is not fair and the odds are always stacked against you.

But do not fear, there’s an easy way to get it off your chest and that is to simply unload your problems onto other people. Other people are almost always at hand so you should take every opportunity to remind them in intricate detail how life is much worse than they think it is. Then proceed to follow this up with a long list of examples.

2. Focus on what sucks

There’s a lot of amazing music out there. It’s just a shame nobody realises how shitty it is. The human mind is capable of rationalizing pretty much anything, so why not rationalize that everything sucks? Just joined a new band? They probably suck. Just nailed that Victor Wooten lick? Whoopty-sodding-doo, it still probably sounds lame and you’ll forget it by next week.

The world really can be a shitty place, if you’ll just let it.

3. Argue about absolutely everything

When you successfully focus on how everything sucks then it logically follows that you’re now going to have to spend a comparable amount of time convincing everybody else why that’s the case.

This works particularly well when somebody doesn’t agree with you on YouTube. Be sure not to let them get away with it. Set aside a few hours of your time to bring them up to speed on how stupid their opinion is and why it is wrong.

Additionally, once in a while, and completely unpredictably, pick a fight over something trivial and make unwarranted accusations where possible. This interaction should last ideally for the best part of an evening while ignoring your children and spouse.

Finally, well-intentioned friends and relatives can often be overwhelmed by the scale of your misfortune, sometimes to the extent of agreeing with you. Do not be fooled, this is merely a form of pity and you must remind them immediately to stop being such patronizing dicks. Argue about absolutely everything

4. Compare yourself to other musicians

Another sure fire way to increase your levels of bitterness and self loathing is to compare how shitty you are to your idols. Who cares that they gave up their social lives to practice 8 hours a day for most of their early lives? Obviously that’s irrelevant. The smug old sods were just lucky and born with it. The important thing to remember is that the world isn’t fair and your 30 minutes of practising too fast once a fortnight is probably a waste of time because your brain hates you and won’t let you get any better.

5. Blame everything and everybody else

One of the most important steps in the quest for all encompassing despair is to realize how all your failures, shortcomings and problems are actually not your fault but rather that of soulless profiteers and other such unscrupulous bastards.

Think about it, your parents didn’t raise you properly, your teachers didn’t teach you properly, your band doesn’t do their job properly, the soundman can’t mix properly, the engineer can’t stop your drums sounding like cardboard, the government don’t support your career properly, your brain doesn’t have all the same neurons and shit that clever people do… What an absolute farce.

6. Regularly criticise other musicians

This is very important. It didn’t exactly take you years to develop a good ear for music, you were just naturally blessed with sublime taste and substance. If only everybody else realised it, right? Many new musicians however, don’t understand why your music is the best.

Often times, you will come across videos of people demonstrating new patterns they’ve learned or new songs they’ve covered or written. When you encounter this, waste no time in pointing out how crappy they are. Feel free to tell them exactly what they’re doing wrong but do not by any means offer any form of encouragement to these people, they are only going to get crappier and they need to know about it for their own good. Don’t worry, it’s only the internet, they’re not real people with real feelings you damn hippie.

On another note, you may also occasionally encounter naive musicians who don’t yet see the industry for the lackluster cacophony of wretchedness and rabid inanity that it is. Sometimes they are even clueless enough to have actual real-life hopes and dreams. Make it your duty to indoctrinate them into your world of sourness and hatred, pronto.

7. Watch more TV

There is no better use of time in your pursuit of misery than to watch more television. As a matter of fact, TV advertisements, celebrity culture and, best of all, the news all serve to deliver an impressive dose of fear, self-loathing and disconnectedness with the outside world.

As an added bonus, all the time that you spend watching TV saves you having to practise at your craft, making you all the shittier and giving you even more to complain about. Score!!

8. Refute that somebody else might know something you don’t

Inevitably, as you go about your day to day despondency, some pompous self-righteous shitlord will attempt to prove you wrong at something. In this case, it is important to refute the statement outright with no consideration for the accuracy or substance of their argument. Retaliate immediately with personal attacks on their character.

9. Quit when you make a mistake

Thomas Edison said “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” What a nitwit. What does he know about failure? Everybody knows that if you screw up a couple of times then you’re not cut out for it.

Stop wasting your time, give up, switch on the TV and let those sweet, sweet feelings of inadequacy wash all over you. Feels good, doesn’t it?

10. Practise sustained bitterness

Cultivate the feeling that everything is rubbish and pointless and that people are only out to irritate you. Question yourself on a regular basis how such an inherently fascinating person like you wound up in such a completely tedious and unbearable industry ripe with bleeding idiots.

11. Live in the past

We all remember the good old days, things were much better back then. Unfortunately however, you were born in the wrong place at the wrong time and so are destined for the remainder of your measly existence to bare the asinine nature of the modern day music industry.

The only solution is to live permanently in the past. Ignore all new media, ideas, education, music and art. There is nothing to be gained by engaging with such new-fangled drivel. Recognise what’s gotten worse over time, which let’s face it is pretty much everything.

12. Enter into a continued state of pessimism and anxiety

Goal setting and optimism about the future only leads to inevitable disappointment, so to save time just expect band practice to suck eggs and all new music to be unoriginal and lame.

Steve Jobs said that “the only people who change the world are those who are crazy enough to think they can.” Obviously, whoever this clueless nutter is he never tried doing anything new. Experience shows that venturing outside your comfort zone and trying anything new is stupid and insane.

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