The cry heard round the musician's world is "It's not like it used to be!" Many times I've had the thought that I was born too late after hearing stories of live music in the San Francisco Bay Area from the 40's to the 70's. Not to mention I just love the music that came out of those decades! Musicians who played for a living back in the 60's and 70's tell me tales of multiple venues down a single street, with week-long gigs for each band. You could really make a living as a musician!
Now in the age of media it seems to be a hard sell to get folks to come out and hear live music. Venues and musicians both struggle to make ends meet, with many musicians getting the short end of the stick and needing "day jobs".
However, I can sit and cry about it or I can do whatever possible to build a music career. Guess which one I've chosen? And the timing couldn't be better, as our little Napa grows rapidly to accommodate a burgeoning tourist industry. In some ways, it's been tough experiencing the growing pains and making sure the locals don't get pushed out. But I'd rather capitalize on how it can help rather than complain about the new way of things.
There are more and more opportunities for musicians to play in Napa and surrounding areas. Are they enough to make a living? Well...for some, but not most. Still, it's a start.
With more people enjoying live music, the demand will become stronger. So if you are not a musician, I encourage you to get your friends and go enjoy the many live music options! All of us together can create a community that supports the arts which benefits everyone!