You often hear celebrities using the phrase “giving back to the community” when talking about local philanthropic efforts. This truly is the best description of what you're doing when you provide assistance to members of the community you grew up in. It's a way of paying homage while also helping those in need, so it makes sense to do it as a sort of tithing in appreciation of a lucrative music career. However, you don't have to be an international superstar to engage in this generous practice. With that said, here are 4 ways musicians at all levels can give back to their communities:
1. Become a Music Teacher
This is a great first option to consider because it provides the added benefit of being an ideal career path as well as a way to participate in the nurturing of developing musicians. Although your existing musical career alone might be enough to get you a spot at a local school or university, you may also want to earn an online master of music in music education degree in order to hone your skills as a professional educator before entering the field. Becoming a music teacher also gives you the opportunity to offer private presentations and lectures to students at universities across the country. Plus, an online MMME degree is perfect for any relaxed or retired musician who doesn't want to commit to attending a college campus.
2. Perform at Local Events
Sometimes giving back simply involves doing what you love to do without charging for it. Even if you're accustomed to getting paid for shows, why not give the community a few freebies here and there. The holiday season is a perfect time to showcase your skills and bring a joyful sound to the community. You might consider volunteering at local concerts (which you can find on your smartphone), pageants, talent shows, and any other applicable events.
3. Organize and Promote Fundraisers
As a musician you have the power to use your existing networking and popularity to further the causes of others. This why you often see musician sponsoring specific charities – to raise awareness for a cause. Thus, it's worthwhile to check with local schools, churches, and other fundraising organizations to see if there is any volunteer promotion you might be able to offer via your social media contacts and word of mouth.
4. Donating to Music Stores
Finally, if you have any old instruments, records, books, or other musical equipment or resources that you don't need any more, why not donate them to other musicians? If you don't know anybody who fits the bill, consider donating your excess or outdated equipment to the local music store under the agreement that they'll sell it for an affordable price.
Passing Forward the Torch of Opportunity
Most musicians can remember some sort of childhood or adolescent influence that inspired them to begin their musical journey, whether that be their favorite singer or just a parent, relative, or friend of the family. Oftentimes, that positive role model is a figure that passes on their passion and dream on to the next generation. As a musician who has been fortunate enough to earn a living from your craft, it would only be right that you try to endow others with the same gift.