Accept: 'Earning a Living in Metal Is Near Impossible'

"if you're in the music business trying to make money with metal nowadays, good luck. It's not easy," says Wolf Hoffmann.

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Accept guitarist Wolf Hoffmann has been speaking with Powerline (via Classic Rock Magazine) about the current state of play in the music industry. Hoffmann, who is also a keep photographer, admits that he doesn't expect to make much money out of Accept, and plays in the band for the love of it:

"I've been a photographer and quite successful at it, and very comfortable with what I was doing. If I was only trying to survive or make a living or earn money, I'd be doing photography all day long. It's much easier. And less stressful.

"But the big question for me is: is it as rewarding? I'd probably have to give the honest answer, 'no.' Music is much more rewarding in the end.

"I think it is still frickin' hard to make a living in this kind of thing. And you'd be crazy to do music to earn a living. I've said it again and again, and this is not the only motivation for us by far: we really want this because we love doing it.

"But if it was a way for us to make a living only, it would be tough, man. Fortunately, we now built up our business to where it's really becoming a business again. But if you're in the music business trying to make money with metal nowadays, good luck. It's not easy."

Accept are currently touring in support of their 14th album, "Blind Rage."

37 comments sorted by best / new / date

    May not be easy, but it can still be done. Heck look at anvil. Just got to keep working as hard as you can and not give up.
    +1 for Anvil.
    +1000 for Anvil. Watching the movie was pretty amazing, even more amazing was that people believed it was a scripted film rather than a documentary. Talk about devotion and passion for what you do...
    Getting a steady job in the music industry, with a good, stable income coming in is very difficult, for nearly any genre (classical, metal, etc.), for a long period of time. What you say is it can be done, I'm not doubting it, but that's only for some people. There are many hard-working musicians out there, there are even people who work harder than Anvil I'm sure, but aren't living like kings or queens. For example, compared to the amount of musicians out there working, I bet there's relatively a small fraction who can live off their music from the past and live happily.
    Rex Inclitus
    Anvil are great guys, watched them at the Gasworks many times since their gigs were regular rotation there since 80. My cousin went to high school with Reiner. Little known item is that Lemmy asked Kudlow to join Motorhead after Fast Eddy left but he declined.
    They have day job though don't they?
    Not anymore they don't. Ever since the movie's release, they've had a gigantic second wave of popularity. Very well deserved, if you ask me.
    Rex Inclitus
    It is not just music its Art in general, the lowest income earners are writers, musicians and artists. Ask an accountant in taxation.
    That's why I'm both. Didn't have the balls to pursue music as a career so I got an accountancy degree and now I'm trying to pursue music because it's my passion
    Rex Inclitus
    My wife is an accountant, she bought all my equipment for me and it is all high end and boutique gear, she is awesome.
    Earning a living in any music is near impossible..
    Tell that to Skrillex or the 1,000,000 guys that put cds at the raves...DJ's? are they called?
    Hey, we DJ's can do more than that. Ever heard of Ableton Live? We drop Audio/Midi clips LIVE. But yeah, It is hard to make a living for really any musician. But That's why I'm going to college while trying to etch out a career in the EDM scene, so i'll have a back up plan.
    He has a good mindset that I wish a lot of people would realize. I've played with so many other musicians whose only motive is to get rich and famous. Don't do it for the money, do it because you love it.
    Blood of the Nations really put those guys back on the map. I hope it gets to the point where they can live off the music alone. That would be awesome for them.
    Musicians throughout history have struggled regardless of their genre, its really narrow minded to isolate metal as being near impossible to earn a living in when artists across the entire spectrum of music all fight for attention and those few precious spots at the top of the industry.
    Thats sucks people need to pay for there albums and stop ripping it off the internet 1 for the band and all there hard work they put into it, and 2 for yourself i think when you buy a album you appreciate a lot more and you will play it more .I still buy lps and cds i like having the album cover and sometimes like to look at it as i play the album and go threw the booklets you will really get the most out of the album that way and it is all so mixed the way the band wants you to hear it it sounds better so SUPPORT your metal bands and buy what they work at so hard to give you
    Free-rider concept, along with the slippery slope concept, though. If one person illegally downloads an album, others may ask themselves why they are paying full price when you can get the album for free. So there are two ways: you are morally at peace with yourself where you buy the albums or you cheat and get them for free illegally. It's difficult nowadays because nearly everyone does this. You may download one song for free, illegally, and then you won't see any harm in doing so and the volume of downloads increase. Also, iphones etc. use apps or you can access music playing sites where you don't need to pay for each album (i.e. spotify, itunes, etc.). There are many places where you can listen to music for free, too many places.
    Currently touring in support of their new album "Blind Rage"? Why, I didn't even know it was released yet.
    For a moment I was scared that the album had been already out and I didn't know that.
    A lot of metal bands are not willing to accept that the music has changed and that money comes from different sources.
    The problem, in my opinion , is the way metal has become somewhat stale. It's a little boring these days and I'm sad to admit it.
    Rex Inclitus
    Everything is stale these days, its all been done. Even Rap which was marketed as " New " is a poor mans version of Spoken Word Jazz from the 50's and 60's, at least the SWJ poetry was cerebral. Even country sounds like shitty Pop in the last twenty years. The only thing new in music in the last 10 years is the exploration into several unconventional tuning concepts. The use of auto-tune as an effect is concrete evidence that music has declined into vapidity.
    Don't Know if i will Get shit for this, You can make a living in Music If you follow Trends, (still probably not that easy) to make a living in metal or rock you have to be A. Very Lucky Or B. Pour heaps of money and effort into the band, Pay to go on tour with big bands and You probably wont get much promotion out of that.
    When you say 'you can make a living if you follow trends', I swear that's just a longer way of saying 'sell-out'? Metal isn't the most popular genre, so if you do follow trends, there'll be more One Directions, etc. (god forbid). But that is true, if you follow trends, you may be more successful (larger fanbase, etc.). Even still, you still see older musicians still perform because they may need the money (Cliff Richards, Paul McCartney, etc.).
    Mastodon is a joke, newer metal bands are making it because they mostly sound the same
    While is agree that most bands nowadays sound the same, mastodon is one of the few that has their own thing going on. Now, you're entitled to your own opinion, but listen to mastodon's crack the skye, blood mountain, or leviathan and tell me it sounds like every other band.