An Inside Look at the Music Industry
The music industry seems like a very daunting industry at first glance. High profile artists with strict schedules, flying constantly to make it on time to shows, little sleep, and lots of high energy performances. Many individuals work hard to keep the cogs moving, and make the process seamless. I had the pleasure of diving deep with Abel Lincoln who has worked closely with many big names in the music industry.
Festival Squad: Before we dive into your career, can you tell me about how music made its way into your life?
Abel Lincoln: Music made its way into my life at a young age growing up in New York. Having Hispanic parents my music genre varied growing up. Music is a part of my everyday life; I don’t know what I would do without it.
FS: How did you end up initially getting into the music industry?
AL: I initially got into the music industry working production on a Yo Gotti College Tour: Ft. Rick Ross, Lil Boosie, August Alsina, Rae Sremmurd. The people I worked with were very passionate about working in the music industry and introduced me to others who worked in the music industry. The tour was fun and I learned a lot from it, which lead me to work different live events.
FS: It is my understanding that you are a college student, is it difficult to balance work and school?
AL: Yes! Having to balance school and work is tough especially when you have to travel all the time to work different music festivals or events. Lucky to have some online classes which can help not having to attend an actual class. Talking to the professors also helps with being able to balance work and school.
FS: Can you expand on what it’s like working with high profile artists? How did that come to be, and was it surprising when it happened?
AL: Yeah, it varies on the artist and how well you know them. Usually I work with the artist I know from previous events. I’ve worked with SNBRN and Space Jesus most recently, but working artist relations or transportation for different events or festivals you tend to meet various artists and management. Working with them is fun and interesting because it’s always different. I’ve been fortunate to get the opportunity to work different festivals and work with all kinds of artists. The artists are people too, you have to remember that; sometimes people forget that. Throughout all the events I have worked, all the relationships are built with the artist and it just becomes a natural friendship.
FS: Is there a certain attitude or way you have to carry yourself in order to make it in the music industry?
AL: Just be yourself and be respectful of your peers and artist you are around. Be positive and outgoing. You can always find a way to be positive during an event or working a festival. Being helpful is also very important since you never know who will need help in certain situations that could lead to other opportunities. Also would have to say be professional. Don’t be the drunk and/or belligerent person on substances while working.
FS: For those who hope to make it in the music industry, do you have any advice?
AL: Yes definitely do. Just be yourself. Volunteer or apply to work as many events in different departments to see where you fit in. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or advice from others. You’ll be surprised what you can learn from others by just asking.
FS: Could you expand on what you do in the music industry? Can you take us through an average day?
AL: I work in many different fields, sometimes tour management. I also do some photography. I’ve worked several music festivals, Okeechobee and Shambhala, doing artist transportation and artist relations. On an average day, I’m usually finding ways to stay cool and out of the sun staying hydrated and make sure that I eat because sometimes you can get caught up in work and forget. Sleep is also a must! Sometimes you don’t get enough sleep because you get caught working super long hours.
FS: Do you have any memorable moments you can share?
AL: Some memorable moments I’ve had I guess being able to travel and see new places and getting to meet some extraordinary people in different cities. My most memorable moment would probably have to be going to Shambhala and seeing how beautiful of a place it was and being able to drive outside of the venue British Columbia was epic and one of my favorite places I’ve been too.
FS: What is the best part of being in the music industry?
AL: The best thing about being in the music industry is getting to work with passionate people who share the same passion you do and are at almost every event or festival. It becomes a second family you get to see when you travel to all these different cities.