For musicians, those who succeed and become the most recognized around the world, are those who have a definable style and approach; in other words, they have found their own voice.
Finding your voice is what will make you sound unique from everyone else - this doesn't mean you have peaked in terms of potential or that there is no more room for growth, but rather it simply means you have found a track that you are most comfortable on. Finding your voice is the first step towards success.
While every musician may find their voice in a unique way, the following are ways that many musicians have found their voice in the past that you can use to help put you on the right path towards finding your own voice:
1. Follow your passion and influence
Quite often, musicians will attempt to avoid their most obvious influence in hopes of sounding unique. All this will do is frustrate you and delay your progress. As a musician, you need to be true to yourself and feel comfortable to follow your influences, as it is these same passions that will help you to come into your own and shape your voice.
2. Don't be afraid to fail
You can be sure that 9 out of 10 musicians who have succeeded, achieved what they did because they tried, failed, reworked, tried again, failed again, so on and so forth.
Failing is not a negative thing. In fact, failing is one of the most important elements of success. By trying something, and failing at it, you are able to see what doesn't work and why. Fail enough times and you'll find what does work. It is through this process that you will find your voice.
3. Just do it
No, wearing Nike likely won't help you to find your voice as a musician, but one of the most simple ways to find your voice is to play as often as possible. The more you make your music a part of your every day life, the more you'll start to find styles and techniques that feel the most comfortable.
4. Have confidence in yourself
So what does it feel like to have found your voice? Well, no matter how you get there, once you have found your voice, you will realize that all it feels like is a higher level of confidence in your work than you felt before. Finding your voice means knowing that what you are working on, and the way you are writing or performing is the right fit for you.
So now that you know that finding your voice means having confidence, trying to feel confident in your work from the get-go and see how it helps you to feel out what works best for you. What is the worst that could happen: you try and fail? Go back and reach #2. You've got nothing to lose.
Have you found your musical voice? If so, how?
While these ideas have worked many times, the actual process of finding the musical voice is unique for every musician. If you have found your voice as a musician, let us know how you did so in the form of a comment below.