This is a tough law of success that took a while for me to really grasp, but you must keep business as just that... BUSINESS. Your main allegiance and loyalty is to god and your family. Perhaps this is the reason that some executives are seen as being "shrewd".
The truth is, no one will look out for your best interest better than you. People are cool with you when they are benefiting, but the second something doesn't pan out the way THEY want it to they will begin to give in to paranoia/hearsay and turn on you. Why do you think all the old artists left cash money records? Why do you think Roc-a-fella records broke up?
"It's because the line between friendship and business was blurred."
Whenever you are considered more than strictly a business partner, but actual "fam", watch out: It will backfire and you will feel foolish in the end for not handling your business. God forbid there is a dispute regarding anything monetary with a friend you engage in business with, classic friendship #fail 101.
Do you think a major label will let you keep more of the sales profits because they "like" you? Or because you are "fam"? NO. Better yet, go apply for a loan and show the loan officer some love, be cool with him, call him "homie" and see if you get an interest free loan... NOPE, not gonna happen.
If it doesn't make good business sense for you and your family that you support, don't do it. Read that previous line one more time, soak it in. I'm not suggesting doing anyone unfairly or being unethical in your business dealings... But NEVER over-extend yourself for anyone based on "oh that's my homie", "That's fam", or "oh he's cool people".
I have dealt with all types of shady individuals and have learned to read people very, very, well. I study their actions, decipher their motives, and 9 times outta 10 people's motives are self serving as far as people in the music industry. The small percentage of good people you find, keep em close because good allies are hard to find! I have a few associates over the years that are great people and the relationship is MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL. That's the only friends in business you should have, otherwise buy yourself a dog, then get to the money! Now that's good business!!!
About Joey Cutless
Joey Cutless is a Music Producer, Composer & Engineer that has been a pioneer in online beat sales, TV licensing, and marketing of all things production related for over 15 years.