5 Essential Resources for Aspiring Chicago Musicians

Artist Collective:

Being a successful musician isn’t all about making music. Unfortunately, it’s also very much about people and community. Fortunately, Artist Collective has you covered on both fronts. AC has a wide array of resources for those interested in the music industry, whether it’s the music or the industry. Walkthroughs, mentorships, live training chats. Sometimes they have parties on boats. What more do you need?

DIY Chicago Facebook Group:

I know, I know- Facebook these days is just your parents and Russian bots. But hear me out, this community is highly active with a diverse group of members, all fighting the good fight. The majority are genuinely interested in helping each other out, and if you can stand being invited to 43 DIY basement shows per day, you’ll certainly see some return. If you’re looking to join an existing band, recruit members for your band, collaborate, or just chat with a community of like-minded people, check out this page. You can say hi to your mom while you’re there. 

Reddit – Chicago Music Scenes:

Reddit: Like Facebook, but with less of your Aunt Nelly posting Vice articles about vibrators. This page is admittedly less active than the DIY Facebook group, but it still gets decent action. Anything from advice, to band promotions, to venues looking for openers, to more band promotions. If you’re a musician in the area, this is another great resource to help you keep your finger on the pulse of the music scene. 

Fort Knox Studios:

Have you ever tried to convince your landlord that the 5 piece acoustic drum kit you’re trying to wedge through the front door of your third floor apartment is for decorative purposes only? No? Totally, me neither. But, if you ever needed somewhere you and your bandmates could practice before getting up on stage (and please, please do practice before getting on stage), check out Fort Knox Studios. It’s essentially the physical embodiment of the music community- 120k square feet of furnished practice rooms, offices, and event spaces, all dedicated to music and music industry activity. It offers world-class equipment at a wildly affordable price, so no matter who you are, your band can drop that whole “we’ll just learn our parts individually and put it together live” BS. 

Indie on the Move – Music Venues Database & Tour Booking Contacts:

Have you managed to pull yourself together, meet some people you can stand, form a band, write a few songs, and put together a setlist? Well, you’re honestly killing it, that’s further than most people get. Why stop here? When you get tired of playing to your living room (or to the structurally and acoustically beautiful practice rooms at Fort Knox), head over to Indie on the Move. IOTM can help artists and bands at every level of success find appropriately fitting gigs. You’ll be up on stage in no time, realizing you maybe shouldn’t have just practiced individually and put it together live. 

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