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Parents, resilience, and creative resources

We caught up with the brilliant and insightful Alex English a few weeks ago and have shared our conversation below.

Alex, thanks for taking the time to share your stories with us today. We’d love to hear about the things you feel your parents did right and how those things have impacted your career and life.

The main thing my parents did right that put me on the right path with my music career and business, was letting me be 100% self-sufficient from the start. What I mean by that is by the time I was 12 years old, I was the one calling venues for bookings, I was the one behind my emails, I was the one behind my promotional posts, and I ran my business. Even developing my LLC through the state of New Jersey, I did it all.

My parents were always right behind me, were aware of who I was talking to, and supported me through tough times, but they never intervened. I never realized how impactful this was to my development until I got older. Through my business and also through navigating corporate America, this skill of communication is valuable on all spectrums.

Great, appreciate you sharing that with us. Before we ask you to share more of your insights, can you take a moment to introduce yourself and how you got to where you are today to our readers.

My name is Alex English and I am a singer/songwriter based out of New Jersey. I have been playing live since the age of 10, which led me into performing solo acoustic and writing music at the age of 12. From there, I never looked back.

My LLC, Alex English Music LLC, provides the service of live music, original composition, and music production. “That do it yourself spirit is really important to me because it allows you to be your own person… When you rely on only yourself, you can push past boundaries and rise to be everything you are capable of.” With this in mind, I went on to earn multiple degrees and certifications in business and audio engineering. I have built a foundation for myself to continually serve music through my business, overcoming any external obstacles.

I also believe this is what sets me apart. Yes, I sing, yes, I song write, yes, I perform live, but I also produce, mix, and master all of my own music. I also run my business while continually learning through freelance marketing opportunities and my 9-5pm job in the specialty chemicals industry. All in all, it leads back to building that foundation for yourself – that’s what sets Alex English Music LLC apart.

Through all of this, my original music has landed multiple published deals and placements worldwide. The Voice has also approached multiple times, however my focus on original music and educational pursuits were priority.

Overall, Alex English Music LLC is a rounded business grown through many years of experience and dedication – building a strong foundation for a strong business.

Let’s talk about resilience next – do you have a story you can share with us?

Where can I start?

I guess the main one is the word “no.” In the music industry, and generally throughout life, you have to be okay with the word “no” – I mean taking it AND saying it.

As young girl at the time, 12 years old, you can imagine many venues were hesitant on booking me. From a young age, I had to learn to shake off the “no” and move on to the next gig. Really, it’s similar to sales – are you just going to stop selling if someone tells you they’re not interested? I don’t think so, so why should you?

Overtime, the word “no” gave me drive, and made the word “yes” mean so much more. As you continue in your career – “no” becomes less frequent, and “yes” becomes more welcomed.
I never realized until I got older how much this developed my resilience. As an adult now, hearing the word “no” doesn’t scare me, it’s closing a door that wasn’t meant for me in the first place.

Looking back, are there any resources you wish you knew about earlier in your creative journey?

The importance of being self-sufficient. So many people in the music industry will tell you, “you don’t need school,” “you’ll learn through industry experience,” “use your youth on trying to make it.” I couldn’t disagree more.

Use your youth to educate yourself on the business, on marketing, on audio engineering. Understand the language of the industry so you’re not side swiped in a room of personnel who outrank you and will try to take advantage of your naivety. Learn to speak the language of your sound guys/gals at gigs – trust me, it takes you a long way and builds respect for your art.

Use your college/education years to grow yourself, that’s what they’re meant for – and if anyone tells you different, take it with a grain of salt. Education is your best resource, whether it’s through school, a mentor, books, etc… build your foundation.

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Image Credits Carl Timpone


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