<html lang="en" dir="ltr">
<title>Listen to my music, and let me know what I should do | Derek Sivers</title>
<meta name="description" content="I answered 847 emails in 12 hours today. That’s an average of 51 seconds each. But the single most common request I got was this: “Take a listen to my music and let me know what I should do.” ">
<meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1">
<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="/style.css">
<link rel="alternate" type="application/atom+xml" title="Derek Sivers" href="/en.atom">
<link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="Derek Sivers podcast" href="/podcast.rss">
<link rel="prev" href="https://sive.rs/barking">
<link rel="next" href="https://sive.rs/the-mob">
<h1><a href="/" title="Derek Sivers">Derek Sivers</a></h1>
<div class="blogparent"><a href="/blog">Articles</a>:</div>
<h1>Listen to my music, and let me know what I should do</h1>
I answered 847 emails in 12 hours today.
That’s an average of 51 seconds each.
But the single most common request I got was this:
“Take a listen to my music and let me know what I should do.”
Those emails took the longest.
I never know what to do with that request.
Most of the time, the music is good.
Not the best or worst thing you’ve ever heard, but good.
So I could critique someone’s songwriting, vocals, or production, but then what?
Would they actually go change their music just to meet my tastes?
That’d be unwise.
I’m just a musician that listens mostly to traditional Persian music and <a href="https://somafm.com/groovesalad/">trip-hop</a>.
I built a website that musicians use, but I was never known for my taste in music.
The music itself usually doesn’t make it clear what someone should do.
What if I was in a different industry and people said:
“I’m trying to find a spouse. Look at my photo and tell me what I should do.”
“I want to be a millionaire. Look at my bank account and tell me what I should do.”
The real answer is “<strong>it depends...</strong>”
What are your goals?
Why are you making music?
What have you done so far?
What’s worked? What hasn’t?
What is your reaction to criticism or setbacks?
Are you <a href="/time">future-focused or present-focused</a>?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What are your habits?
Are you growing or coasting?
How do you measure success? Fame? Money? Emotional response?
What’s your timeline? 1 year? 3 years? 30 years?
... and 50 other questions that would make this article too long.
It’d take many hours of conversation to get enough information to responsibly tell someone what to do.
But since I only have a few minutes, I point people to <a href="/pdf">the advice I’ve already written</a> and the <a href="/book">books that have inspired me</a>, then hope they know how it will apply to their unique situation.
I always feel a little disappointed that I can’t be more helpful.
<img src="/images/3way.jpg" alt="http://www.flickr.com/photos/scharks/3290334794/" />
If this interests you, see a related article: <a href="/letmeknow">“Let me know what you think”</a>.
© 2009 <a href="https://sive.rs/">Derek Sivers</a>.
« <a href="/barking" accesskey="p" rel="prev">previous</a>
<a href="/the-mob" accesskey="n" rel="next">next</a> »
Copy & share:
<span class="url"><a href="https://sive.rs/letmeknow2">sive.rs/letmeknow2</a></span>