Randy Newman, singer/songwriter and film composer extraordinaire, when asked what one might do to attain to something near his level of artistic ability replied, "Don't play video games. You'll wake up one day a 35 year old who can't do anything else." I wonder what he would say now about Social Media?
Many times since I heard those words I have co-writen with artists who are so busy texting and Tweeting and checking their Facebook pages they can't focus properly on the song at hand. I don't blame them because I understand that they are basically prisoners of Social Media. Nowadays fans
crave access to the artist and the artists must deliver to keep the fans actively involved in everything happening in their careers and lives. Success these days is often measured by the number of followers you have on Twitter.
How they do it? I can't imagine the effort involved in constantly feeding that network of fans while trying to write new material, demo and record new songs, rehearse the band, deal with the label, the managers, booking agents, promoters, radio stations, in-store appearances, and the endless
When do they get a chance to actually practice guitar? When can they study music? How can they take time to read a book?
The creation of music requires a lot of concentration and focus. Anything that intrudes in the middle of a moment of inspiration can be deadly to your work. The three main enemies of a writer have always been family, friends, and society. All three groups believe that since you aren't working 'on the clock' you should be able to stop anytime they need you for something. Now social media has combined these three into an omnipresent monster eating away at your life everywhere you go.
I would suggest an addendum to Randy Newman's quote, 'Disconnect yourself at least a couple of hours a day and get in touch with the quiet'. Then when you reconnect with your fans you might actually have something to say.