Chapter 6 - Conclusions - What Do You Believe In?

Two main research questions at the heart of the study are revisited: how widespread are mental health conditions (anxiety and depression specifically) amongst music workers? How do musicians feel about the work they do and the impact it has on their emotional wellbeing? It is just suggested that the three ‘statuses’ which the book identifies correspond to ideas of economic (the status of work), cultural (the status of value) and social (the status of relationships) validation, that offer a framework for understanding and answering these questions. The chapter suggests that the working lives of musicians today are different to those of the past given the huge levels of competition and the injunction to participate and create ‘content’, embedded as they are in wider infrastructures of technology companies which care little for their art or musicians’ wellbeing. The chapter concludes by considering what options might exist to improve the situation, by exploring listening and the role of therapy, the role of public policy, and a discussion around the idea of a legal ‘duty of care’ in the music professions. Finally, there is an extended discussion of the implications of the author’s findings for the role of music education for the profession moving forward. The text concludes with a final question: what does this research tell us about the price of working in music for those who follow it as a career, and is the price of such musical ambition just too high?

Om Podcasten

An invaluable guide for those currently making their career in music. By listening to how musicians think and feel about their working lives, this book shows that if making music is therapeutic, making a career from it can be traumatic. It shows how careers based on passion have become more insecure and devalued, artistic merit and intimate self-disclosures are the focus of unremitting scrutiny, & personal relationships and social networks are bound up with calculative transactions. Going beyond self-help strategies, the authors challenge the industry to make transformative structural change.