Meet The Musician With A Big Dream – Scotty James


Today, I’m doing an inspirational interview with a musician named Scotty James. Entrepreneurs and musicians have a lot in common, mainly that they have to hustle to achieve success in their industries. After hearing Scotty’s struggles and story, I knew I had to interview him to share his perspective with the world.



Without further ado, here is the interview:



1. Tell us a little about yourself, who you are, and what you do.


So my name is Scotty James and I am an unsigned musician from Waterloo, ON. My music is pop/acoustic/rnb somewhere along the lines of Justin Timberlake meets Rihanna, meets John Mayer.



2. You told me you made it on the billboard charts, which is an amazing accomplishment! Tell us more about how you achieved that and what the experience was like.


Getting on the Billboard charts was no easy task. In fact it is a goal that seems almost impossible for most unsigned artists. But I wasn’t about to let that get in the way of me achieving this goal. I had no money, no fans. Just a beat up old guitar and a dream. I knew I had to get money somehow to work with a producer and release my first album.



So I thought of this random idea to go serenading people door to door. I would arrive on their porch with my guitar and sing them a song or two for 10 bucks per song. People loved it and I was making money doing this. It was hard work but I knew that If i kept going I would find some kind of opportunity that would launch my career. After going door to door pounding the pavements for weeks and weeks, I happened to knock on the door of a music manager. I played him my song “Wanna be loved” he paid me the 10 bucks and after talking, we signed a management agreement and he funded my first release. So I then set out with my Manager Johnny to achieve or first goal which was to hit the billboard charts unsigned.



We promised ourselves that there would be no possibility of failure. If you want something bad enough you will make it happen one way or another. So we thought, if we can concentrate on getting one major radio station playing my song “Wanna be loved” then everyone else will see that and they will also start to pick up the song. So that’s the first thing we did. We did whatever we possibly could to get onto that first station (91.5 The Beat Kitchener). We called them, e-mailed them multiple times, we physically went into the station to play them our song. They said yeah It’s a great song, but on one wants to take the risk of playing a new song that nobody has heard of yet. So we said ok… back to the drawing board. We knew we had to show them this song had potential in order for them to start playing it. So we decided that we would ask 91.5 The beat if we could shoot the music video for the song at their station and use one of their DJs (Mike Devine) to be the main character. They agreed and we shot the music video there. A couple weeks later we released the video onto youtube and the first day of its release we got somewhere around 5 thousand views. The radio station saw this and finally agreed to start playing the song.



After that other stations slowly started to pick up the song and in the process I ended up winning the “Bell Emerging Artists Initiative” which is a program in Canada that supports great new songs and if you win it you get launched over night onto Bell stations all across the country. Soon after winning that I hit the billboard charts nationally. It felt unreal to have finally achieved that goal that most thought I couldn’t achieve without a label.


3. With all this great success, what is your current goal and what are you trying to do next?


So just because we hit the billboard charts doesn’t mean we are financially successful just yet. In fact our team is tapped out. We have no more money to make another album or for marketing and we have met with every major record label in the US and in Canada. They all say I have great marketability, great songs, but not enough traction yet.



They basically want you to do all the work, create the army of fans on your own before they sign any deal with you. It’s just too big of a risk for them in todays world where no one is buying CDs anymore. So we decided that we aren’t going to let that stop us. So we are going to create our own marketing machine using no money. We are going to set out to gain 1 million true fans in only 99 days using zero dollars and with the very little resources that we have. We are going to prove that this is possible and people are going to be able to watch my trial and error towards this goal from scratch.
Having a fan base of that size will then allow us to work with major producers, tour the world, continue to release songs to radio, hit the top of the iTunes charts and then if there happens to be a great offer from a record label then at that point we will consider that avenue.



4. What motivates you to continue pushing forward even when you struggle or are met with obstacles?


I am met with many, many struggles and obstacles. I just have to remind myself during those times that everything I am doing now is a sacrifice for what I will become. I may be working out of my moms basement now with barely any money to even get a coffee, and myself and my team are putting endless amounts of effort and all nighters in to make this a reality and it’s not easy. It’s a constant battle with our minds. But at the end of the day you have to want this so bad that you are willing to die for it. You have to be willing to sacrifice everything to be able to live the life of your dreams.



5. Tell us some of the lessons you have learned on your journey thus far.


One of the biggest things I have learned is how to take constant rejection. If you can learn how to take rejection on a daily basis and still be able to keep getting back up and fighting, then you will be ok in this business.



6. What is your proudest accomplishment to date?


I would say my proudest accomplishment would be winning a CRMA (canadian radio music award).



7. How have haters or people who have brought you down fueled your success?


I have learned to love haters. I have realized that most people will tell you that you can’t accomplish something even though they haven’t tried it themselves. Or they have tried and they gave up, and because of the fact that they gave up they don’t believe anyone else can do it. That doesn’t make sense to me. So I just laugh it off and do everything I can to prove them wrong.



8. As an entrepreneur myself, I know all about chasing the dream. Share your perspective of chasing dreams and what it means. Why are you pursuing a career in the music industry?


Chasing your dream is so important. If you aren’t chasing your passion then what are you doing? Why live a life stuck in a situation you don’t want to be in. It makes absolutely no sense. You should be spending ALL of your time trying to figure out how you can make a living doing what you love to do. I am pursuing music because that’s my passion, it has always been in my heart and every morning I get up excited to do what I do. I barely sleep because that’s how excited I am about what I am doing. That’s how it should be. That’s what i am put on this earth for.



9. How many hours a day do you work?


Right now myself and my team are working about 18-20 hours/day on our campaign.



10. I know you mentioned you went door to door serenading people, tell us about other things you have done to really go out and hustle. How successful was the door to door serenading?


Other then the door to door serenades I would go in public and randomly serenade people. On the bus, at a restaurant, poolside, wherever. You really never know who you are going to run into. I have also gone door to door selling my cds and have sold close to 4000 copies door to door. The door to door serenading was very successful. Hard work but it was actually a lot of fun. People would invite me into their homes all the time. I met a a lot of cool, amazing people along the way!



11. Any advice or last words for other dream chasers out there?


I would say just to decide what you want as soon as possible. Then do whatever it takes to get it. You will have to try and fail maybe 100 times before you get it. But eventually you will achieve your success.



12. Share links to your social networks, websites, and anywhere else people can hear your music/find out more about you.


So to follow my challenge we are directing everyone to my Facebook page from there you will find my website, YouTube and twitter links.



Lastly, I will share a YouTube video showcasing Scotty’s music and just how talented he is.



Spread the love
Post a Reply