Episode #090: Interview with Noe Venable (TOM & Elite Student)


In this episode C.J. interviews elite student Noe Venable, a mother of two living in the San Francisco area, who has experienced great results by faithfully following the course work in the Savvy Musician Academy (SMA).

This is more than a plug for our courses. Noe has tirelessly wrestled through multiple challenges trying to dial in her audience and get results, and her breakthroughs have both inspired and taught other SMA students to try and achieve the same.

In fact, Noe also applied her new skillset another small business she has, and that has also gone to the next level for her.

If you are wondering how to figure out who your audience is and how to motivate yourself to take the next step with putting your music into the world and sustaining yourself by finding your super fans, this is the episode for you!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Self-Determination
  • Background on Noe Venable
  • Finding super fans through culture
  • Frequency of social media posting
  • Sharing content that’s authentic and deep
  • Protecting and tending to your fanbase
  • Audience is digital capital
  • Pushing past inner resistance
  • Sticking to the principles
  • Living the culture you portray
  • Maximizing your potential


“Success is about you. It’s about how much you determine that you are going to make this work no matter what.”  – @noevenable [0:04:20]

“If we as musicians want to be successful at getting our work out there and making a sustainable life for ourselves as artists using these tools, we have to be culture makers, we have to be culture nurturers.”  – @noevenable [0:13:18]

“It’s a joy that you do get to share community that it’s not just as you said chumming your fans with just drivel, social media drivel, but very deep conversations.” – @metalmotivation [0:17:57]

“Tending a culture really requires a certain amount of fierceness when necessary. I have to be willing to be the tigress sometimes.”  – @noevenable [0:18:38]

“True capital in the era of the digital age is an audience.” – @metalmotivation [0:27:48]

“If you want to live in a way that lets you bring your deepest gifts to the world, you have to make it sustainable and money is a big part of what it takes to do that.”  – @noevenable [0:29:42]

“I’ve learned from this course how to push past inner resistance.”  – @noevenable [0:33:19]

“Scarcity, impoverishment, these are real mentalities that war and neutralize people.”  – @metalmotivation [0:35:50]

“You know, the biggest, most valuable thing that I have learned over this last year is this, if people are not really responding, if you feel like you’re not being seen somehow, it’s because you haven’t made it visible.”  – @noevenable [0:37:23]

“When we focus on the things that fascinate us, that’s when we start to be able to create content that’s fascinating to others. We have to be fascinated.” – @noevenable [0:40:34]

“Your creativity doesn’t have a fear of rejection. Your creativity is not afraid of people.” – @metalmotivation [0:42:51]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Join the TOM 3.0 Waitlist — explodeyourfanbase.com

Noe Venable (TOM & Elite Student) — https://www.noevenable.com/

Book a Call With Us — http://www.CallSMA.com

Inner Circle Membership — https://savvymusicianacademy.com/innercircle

Click For Full Transcript

00:21 CJ: Welcome once again to The Savvy Musician Show, this is CJ Ortiz I’m the Branding and Mindset Coach here at the Savvy Musician Academy. I’m excited today, not because my co-host is not here. That’s not a reason to be excited. I’m excited because, in light of the fact that she’s not here, I get once again to talk to one of our students at Savvy Musician Academy. I’m really excited about this one because I was just talking to her offline and telling her how much we brag about her offline. So it’s really a joy to get to introduce her to you. And before I do, let me just say that again, if you’d like to help out The Savvy Musician Show, please leave a review or comments on your respective podcast player, Spotify, iTunes. Just go and leave, they say stars and give us stars and leave a kind word.

It helps us to be found by other fine musicians like yourself, or you’re always welcome to go to our Facebook pages, Facebook groups, leave a comment or question, maybe a suggestion for a topic you’d like to hear Leah and I cover in the future, and yes, she will be back. She and her family moved across country and out of the country. So they’re getting situated now. She’s got a lot on her plate. She will be back soon enough. But again, I’m excited to have this special lady with me here today, a unique recording artist, very, very hard worker who has had some great breakthroughs that I’m looking forward to her telling you about. Let me welcome Noe Venable, thank you for being with me today. Noe, how are you?

01:59 Noe: Thanks so much, CJ. I’m great. It’s really surreal to be sitting here looking at you because I’ve been listening to podcasts so much and just your wisdom and the course and it’s awesome to talk to you.

02:10 CJ: Oh great. Thank you. So, yeah, it’s funny, back in the radio days when you’d hear somebody’s voice always on the radio, and then you get to meet them in person, you’re like, “That doesn’t look at all like I imagined.” But in this case, we see each other all the time in the group and you’ve been so diligent to participate in the group, which I must say for those existing students who are a part of either program to follow your lead in that, to be active in the group. You’re very active with your questions, with challenges you might have and your victories. So you found some real value there in participating in the group.

02:54 Noe: Oh yeah. It’s been incredible. I mean honestly, I would say as inspirational as the video content has been and as helpful as the podcasts have been, I would honestly say that maybe 60% of my learning in this course has really come through those Facebook group interactions in the Elite Group, both with coaches and with the other students. It’s just been incredible.

03:18 CJ: Wow. That’s a lot to say because obviously somebody is going to get fixated on the course itself and let’s see what’s included. Is it going to cover Facebook ads and how Leah does this or that and you don’t realize that yes, principles are important, but so is that accountability, and you’re obviously in there with other people just like yourself who are also battling it out in the trenches. And I guess you’ve learned a lot from others as much as they’ve learned from you.

03:54 Noe: I learned so much from others and I’ve also learned a lot through repeatedly working on verbalizing the things that I’ve been learning as I learn them. I learn, process a lot through writing. That has been incredibly helpful. I think what it really makes me think about is that I know you’ve said this so many times, but I had to have my own breakthrough of realizing it, that ultimately success is about you. It’s about how much you determine that you are going to make this work no matter what. It’s about saying, “I am going to be an artist in this life. I am not going to let this life go by without being the artists that I know I can be, and without setting up the sustainable systems that allow me to do that. I’m going to bring my message, I’m going to bring my music, I’m going to make it happen.”

And so then you know, all the video content is awesome and helpful, but the most important thing is really your own process and what are you doing with that and what kinds of questions are you asking and how alive are you in the process and how hard are you working? And the Facebook group is really the place where that plays out.

05:07 CJ: Yeah, that was very, very well said. Not because you’re quoting me at all, but no the fact that… Because I know that you speak for so many in the sense that they might feel… we said this offline briefly how you can get… There’s a cynicism almost amongst musicians today because breaking into music is hard enough as is. It always has been. But then when you add to it, this new era of the music industry where record labels are struggling, where music is so readily available through streaming services or YouTube or what have you, people feel like, well, and you just can’t make any money, you certainly can’t have your own audience. But with those challenges, they can only be met with sheer determination, which means you’ve got to come first to that realization that, “I’ll do whatever I need to do to realize this dream.” But to find out more about you Noe, tell us a little bit about your music, what you do, what you play.

06:20 Noe: Yeah. Well, I play the harp. I also play guitar and piano, some mountain dulcimer, I kind of play whatever I need to really. I’m also a home recording artist and engineering for me and creating arrangements at home is a huge part of the process of the songwriting. And so yeah, I play a lot of different things, but harp is my main instrument now and it’s part of what drew me to Savvy Musician Academy and what has drawn me into this stage of realizing that I wanted to put music out there into the world and in a big way, again. My genre, I call it Ethereal Folk Music for Seekers. And before I started doing it this way, I had a really, really beautiful experience. I had a lot of success when I was very, very young, really being out there in the world touring a lot.

I got to open for a lot of really amazing people, meet a lot of my heroes. But I was the classic story of exactly something that I’ve heard you talk about so well, which is when a young artist gets a lot of that attention and the success comes to them really easily and they don’t build up the character to be able to really cope with that and be able to sustain it. So I majorly burned out in my late 20s and just felt like I couldn’t figure out a way to do this that felt okay and good and safe and stepped away from it for a long time and then have come back, and Leah was like a huge part of what made me see that now there was a way to do this that would be integrity for me, where I could feel safe and clear and find my people and bring the message that I need to, to the world. 

So I feel more empowered than I ever have before and than I ever did back then, even when I was enjoying a lot of that sense of being in the flow and receiving a lot of feedback. This is better, now is better.

08:28 CJ: Right. And what’s interesting about this is, as I said in a recent interview with another one of the students, Jeff Pearce, is that you guys have these unique little niches in the musical marketplace and you get into things like the ethereal or in Jeff’s case, ambient music. I mean that’s not everybody, that’s not pop, that’s not Top 40. So you’re not reaching out to the mainstream. Before you got involved in the Savvy Musician Academy, what were your thoughts about the possibility of reaching a targeted community like that?

09:07 Noe: I just would never have thought it was possible for one because I wasn’t really using social media too much. And secondly, I frankly just thought that my music was way too strange. I thought I was like a big weirdo and my music was so weird. Throughout my life as an artist, there have always been people who have responded really strongly to my music. They’ve been very unique people, a few really unique people. So in a sense, like I always actually had Superfans that I would not have thought that there were very many of them. I mean how could I have known, because I don’t know many people like that in my daily life. Really it is such a niche audience that this is the only way that I could have found them. And what makes it even a little bit trickier for someone like me is that the people who tend to respond to my music are not unified by the fact that they love folk music.

Some of them love my folk music, they might love some other folk music, but they might also love gothic rock. They might also love heavy metal. There’s actually a huge spread because what they have in common is not a shared taste in a musical genre, it’s something else. And what this course gave me, the skills to do and the curiosity to do was to really try and figure out what that was that unified them and ultimately I did, through a lot of research, come to figure out some of the things that we had in common. And once I started to then use the power of online targeting on Facebook to reach these people, I’ve come to see that there actually are a lot of us. There are so many more people than I knew. So it’s about so much more than getting my music out there now. It’s honestly been about the feeling of realizing that I’m not alone in seeing the world the way I do, and that’s brought so much joy and fulfillment into my life.

11:13 CJ: Wow. I’ll tell you what, that I could close the interview right there only because what you just said is so important. And it’s powerful because it’s what people are not even thinking when it comes to promoting their music. They tend to think, “I’m going to promote my gig”, so their Facebook page is filled with events. Or they may share a song here or there, but that’s the extent of it. Not realizing that in the day in which we live, when we say digital marketing, don’t think just sales, digital communications here. You do have to think well of what you just described, which is, “I realize it’s not just a musical genre.” Man, that’s huge. It’s so important. It’s not just a genre. There is something that all of these people who have broad tastes in music, but yet are your ideal Superfan.

There is something beyond the music that they share in common. And again, the average musician, no matter what the genre is, is not thinking that way. Their minds aren’t there, therefore when they see something about what’s possible, for example, with digital marketing as promoted by the Savvy Musician Academy, they immediately discount it. They immediately try to say, “No, there’s got to be some other way. It’s a scam. It’s this. They must be doing that. There must be some hack, some special piece of software, whatever it may be.” No. What proceeds the sales, what proceeds all of these things is this thing that connects you and your audience. This shared thing. Now, of course, we talk a lot about culture and so why don’t you speak to that for a little bit, just about the culture as a means of connecting you and your audience.

13:18 Noe: If we as musicians want to be successful at getting our work out there and making a sustainable life for ourselves as artists using these tools, we have to be culture makers, we have to be culture nurturers. We have to find our people and create a safe haven where these people can communicate with each other and where we can all see that we’re not alone. And that part of the work is awesome. It feels so good. It’s so fun. I do my social media each morning in the wee hours because I have two little kids, which is part of the reason why Leah was the only coach in the world who could have spoken to me about these things. Anyone else had talked to me about it, I would have been like, “You’re crazy. That’s not my life. I have two kids. I’m working, I have to do, there’s no way.” But because she was a homeschooling mother of five…

14:18 CJ: Yeah, only the woman with five kids can speak to the woman with two kids, right?

14:25 Noe: So I’m up at 3:00 or 4:00 AM doing my social media and every day I start the day with the sense of touching into this community that I’ve been nurturing. And it brings me so much joy. Not because people are commenting about how wonderful I am or how wonderful my music is, although I do get a fair amount of that. But because I get to talk about things that are really exciting and nourishing to me, things that I’m fascinated by and things that are fascinating to them too. And everything just flows naturally from there. It’s a partaking in shared values. It’s a partaking in things that you all care about, that excite you, that are your ways of bringing your joy to the world. Because my unique culture, because of the particular people that my culture really speaks to who tend to be oftentimes are highly sensitive people, they’re people who love nature, where people who are really interested in working on ourselves on personal transformation, the conversations actually get really deep and they feed me too.

And this is where I think maybe what I’ve been discovering is a little different from what I’ve seen a lot of other people doing and I just want to share it because I want other people to know that it’s possible. It is really possible to get into really deep stuff when you’re building culture on social media. It doesn’t have to say stay shallow like, “Hey guys, what do you think of this thing?” You know, it can really get into deep stuff and it just matters that it reflects you and the interests that really naturally fit with your music. Like that’s what’s going to speak to people. It doesn’t have to look like what anyone else is doing.

16:25 CJ: Yeah. Isn’t that great? That not only do you get to play music but especially when a musician like yourself, the music that you play has these deeper philosophical elements to it and that you share now this with a community who, like you said, doesn’t mean they only listen to folk music. And I’ve said that to other students in the past, Noe where, because of their particular genre. Like there’s one guy, Christopher Elie who is very socially aware, especially environmental activism. I mean, and he’s a die-hard, and he’s a real champion for the cause. He plays folkish type music, but it’s all acoustic and he’s pretty much solo. But because he’s so much a leader of that way of thinking and voicing that message, I told him, I said, “You’re going to get people from all walks of life.”

In other words, the metalhead, let’s use a metalhead as an example, the heavy metal person who just happens to be very passionate about those very same things, who would normally not listen to any folk players, will listen to you simply because he feels so passionately about what you do. And it’s a very interesting phenomena, and again, something not usually anticipated by anybody who’s trying to break into the music industry in which we live. But it’s a joy that you do get to share community that it’s not just as you said chumming your fans with just drivel, social media drivel, but very deep conversations. Now, obviously you’re having these in the group setting, so you have a Facebook group for this and I know that you’ve been very diligent about your group, both growing your group and setting boundaries and that sorts of things to protect the kind of environment that you’re cultivating. Tell me a little bit about that.

18:31 Noe: Yeah, that’s been super interesting and important. Tending a culture really requires a certain amount of fierceness when necessary. I have to be willing to be the tigress sometimes. “No, that can’t happen here.” If you don’t do that, if you don’t really stay super present and make sure that you’re keeping abreast of anything like that, anything negative, then you’re dead in the water. Like the group will stop feeling like a safe place for people. It’s really important and especially… It’s interesting too how it gets… You have to find your own way with it. Like I know Leah, in her groups, will say, “No negativity, let’s keep this positive.”

I’ve never been comfortable saying that because my group is also really about authenticity, so I want people to feel free to share about hard things that they’re going through and I don’t, want ever that feeling of being positive to be something that makes people feel like they can’t be authentic. That means that without having a clear rule like that I have to be probably more assertive in really making sure that if anything goes south that I am right there and I’m deleting that comment and I’m reaching out to that person and saying, “that’s not going to happen here.”

I want to just say one other thing because I know a lot of us struggle with building engagement on our pages and it took me many months of really concerted work on it, showing up every day and taking Leah’s, the approach of just experiment, fail, learn from your mistakes, keep going to begin to really figure out what worked. And I had this insight the other day that I shared in the group, but I want to share it here-

20:29 CJ: Yes, please.

20:30 Noe: … if it’s useful for anyone, and that is that my brand is all about remembering the magic that’s possible in life and through mythos, through spirituality, also through literature, like Harry Potter is something that a lot of us share a passion for along with books like Lord of the Rings and Ursula Gwyn. Anyways, so this is a Harry Potter reference, but I want to say that I think a great social media post is like a sorting hat. And if you have watched Harry Potter, you’ll know that this sorting hat, when the kids arrive at Hogwarts School for Wizards, they put on the sorting hat and the hat rumbles on their head and then says out the name of the house that they’re going to live in, and they’re going to stay in that house for the rest of their time at Hogwarts.

So different houses have different identities and it’s really like the hat is going to tell you here’s what your identity is. So a good social media post, it sorts people in the same way. When you see it, if you are like meant to be with that culture that the post is representing, you feel this sense of resonance. And if it’s not for you, you’re just kind of scroll on by. You’ll probably just ignore it. You’ll probably won’t say anything. You’ll probably just be like, “Oh yeah, that’s not for me,” and move on. But your posts have to be strong enough and clear enough and reflective enough of the culture that you’re creating that they can have that sorting power.

If they’re just neither here nor there, then they won’t really have that effect. They won’t ever give someone that resonance of, “Oh, these are my people.” For me, the most beautiful sweet spot is where a post makes you go, “Wow, I feel that way inside, but I never quite found words for it.” And here’s this person saying this thing that I feel inside and then you have to know more, you have to go and experience what they’re creating and if it’s a group, then you want to contribute to it and you actually become an active member of that group and pretty soon you’re co-creating the culture together and friendships develop. And it really is like you found your house. Those relationships can really last and transform you and also pave the way for sustainability in your creative work.

23:05 CJ: Yeah, and it’s, so off the beaten path for what people think even a new approach to the music industry would be. Because most people tend to think or they approach it, not all that dissimilar from the way the music industry was before. They just feel like, “Well now it’s online so somebody else will do my marketing for me, somebody else will do my whatever for me.” Artists didn’t have to do that back during the record label days, and so they certainly shouldn’t have to do that now. And so there’s not this level of sophistication. I say sophistication because I know a lot of people out there again, are simply not familiar with it. Someone like yourself, you’re used to this to some degree now. This is the arena in which you operate.

So now you’ve created a culture, you found your little niche, your targeting people and anybody who’s listening to you and who knows you especially knows, man you’re an earthy, you mean what you say, you are into the things you’re talking about. Okay. So that means you are not, I don’t get the idea of greed or somebody lusting for popularity or any of that sort of stuff, but Noe, you’re marketing online with Facebook, evil Facebook and targeting people in an ad manager and spending money on advertising and putting together things that will ultimately be sold, God forbid. I mean, how do you harmonize that in your own mind?

24:41 Noe: Well, as far as I can see at least for now, social media is here to stay, at least for now. So we can use these technologies for good or we can use them for ill and I am determined to use this for good. And for me, there are a lot of different ways that I want to do that, that all relate to my music-making. But my music-making is a small part of it. Sales are a part of it and I have to crack that because I need to make this sustainable. I do not have a trust fund. I’m not someone who is… Like my husband and I, we’re a two artists family living in San Francisco.

25:22 CJ: Oh, wow expensive.

25:24 Noe: Which is crazy. Yeah, but I can really see now that it’s possible. I have to say that I have not really leaned in too much on sales yet but definitely have been… things have been selling very organic. Just got the results of the work I’ve been doing around building culture and building these systems and developing my relationships with people. But for me, the reason I haven’t really leaned in on the selling piece yet has to do with where I’m at in my artistic career. You know, because I am transitioning to a new instrument and I’m releasing a new album probably next year that’s going to be music that’s in some ways really different from what I’ve done up until now.

So it’s made more sense to really focus on just paving the way for this new direction and selling somewhat along the way. But building the foundation that’s going to allow it to be sustainable when I really do start to bring more of those really super amazing technical Ninja powers that Leah teaches around the more like selling oriented marketing, which I’ve done not too much of yet. But what I have done has been really effective to the extent that I’ve done it.

26:46 CJ: Well, you’re laying the foundation and you know, this is something that I often have to share with folks because everybody has their perceptions about what should happen when it should happen and what their expectations are. Because Leah can make it sound easy, not her fault, it’s just that she’s so matter of fact about her results that people are like, “Oh, well if I just go through a course, I will have these same results.” Not realizing the amount of time that it can take to, like you said, zero in on your audience, your niche, your culture, and then cultivate that. I mean this, what a culture is, right? It’s about to bring something out, right? Agriculture to bring something out. So to take a group of people like they are a piece of ground and grow something out of it, that takes time. That takes effort.

And so I like to tell people that what is true capital in the era of the digital age is an audience. That’s capital. And even if, because sometimes people are reluctant to sell… like yourself because you don’t feel like you’re at that place right now, well that’s where you want to place your emphasis. Others are just hesitant because they’re fearful of it, they are just not ready to pound their list so to speak with sales or something like that. So they’re still getting over their views about sales in general. They kind of still see it as dirty, they still see it as something that’s beneath what an artist should be. Not realizing that that’s what a record label is going to do for you.

So either way, somebody’s selling, but the fact that you build something, a community as big and as far and as wide as you want to build it, and that if those people are engaged with you, as we say in the group, if they know you, if they like you and if they trust you and they value you and they celebrate you and you celebrate them like you said, it’s organic in a lot of ways, but then when you get even more intentional about it, even more organized about it, then the results can even be that much better because the fact of the matter is, like you said, you’ve got a husband and two kids and you’re both artists and you are living in one of the most expensive areas in the world.

It is not an… for those of you who are listening who don’t know anything about San Francisco, it ain’t cheap to be in the Bay Area at all, any place in Northern California and California in general, but especially that particular region of the country, very coveted area of the country. Silicon Valley too, you name it is out there in Northern California. So it’s expensive. So you have to sustain yourself and if you don’t do it with your gifts, talents, and abilities, then you’ve got to do it with things that can some degree take you away from your gifts, talents and abilities.

29:42 Noe: If you want to live in a way that lets you bring your deepest gifts to the world, you have to make it sustainable and money is a big part of what it takes to do that. So what’s been amazing for me has just been this shift in my mindset over the last year since I started working with this course, that once I came from a place of scarcity and doubt and fear around money, and now I have total faith. I have no fear about this. I am going to make this work. And part of the reason that I feel that way is that I have actually seen it work. I took maybe a little bit of an unusual approach in the way that I applied some of the skills that I learned from this course because I had another thing that I was doing.

I actually have two music brands and I’ve been talking about my Singer/Songwriter one, but I also do something in person with families that is kind of like the children’s version of my adult Singer/Songwriter music. My adult Singer/Songwriter music is I guess you would say maybe it’s like a fairy princess or priestess sort of an archetype. It’s very much about magic in nature and I also write music for children that’s really like literally about fairies and magic in nature and I teach this class and I quickly figured out that in the beginning of this course realized I was going to really need more capital to work with, in order to be able to spend money on advertising, things like that. So what I did after testing the waters, just starting to get my Singer/Songwriter stuff up and running, was I decided to take the skills I was learning and apply them to my in-person teaching business.

It was a little different because it wasn’t online, it was in person, but I used all the same principles that I was learning. I created the automated email sequences that allowed me to basically be building relationships with people even when I wasn’t face-to-face with them, just through sending them content that I had created and also with the change in the self-worth. The way I saw myself had changed because of what I was learning in the course. So I quit any situation where I wasn’t really getting paid what I was worth and where I felt in any way like it wasn’t really serving me and really serving, bringing my work to the world in a bigger way. And within two months, I had quadrupled the income of my in-person teaching business. Now, granted, it wasn’t a huge income to begin with, but it was a substantial shift and it was completely because of applying these principles.

So I tested them, I saw that they work, I generated just a little more of a buffer so I didn’t feel stressed about money in the same way, and now I’m taking all those skills and beginning to really bring them to my Singer/Songwriter music and because of having had that experience, I do so with total faith. Like if anything is not working, it’s not the principles. Like it’s something about the way that I’m applying them. It’s something that’s not clear yet or it’s something that’s simply not ripe yet. Because the creative process is very mysterious and there’s this organic unfolding that’s always going on and I’ve learned from this course how to push past inner resistance.

I’ve learned how to work so hard. I’ve learned how to do things that I do not enjoy because I know that I’ve pushed through that inner resistance so many times at this point that I know, yeah I am not digging, sorting out all this technical stuff, but on the other side, it’s going to feel so good when all that automation is just working for me and just doing its thing. It’s like having this team of magical robots that are just going to be round the clock, working to help, bring this goodness to the world that I want to bring. Yeah, so it’s an amazing thing to test the principles, find that they work and then say, “Okay, now I know I can do this. I know I can do it.”

34:07 CJ: That’s outstanding. I’m going to make you the Mindset coach. You can take my role. That was so well done. You could be the Mindset coach, how about that?

34:17 Noe: Awesome. A ton from you and we have something in common which is I went to Divinity School. So religion and just thinking about why we are the way we are and how we learn and how do we get past all those inner gremlins. I live and breathe this stuff. It fascinates me. So I think in a way, a lot of what you have brought to this course has been a really big piece of what’s kept me really interested. Like, yeah, that’s important, that’s fascinating. I’m going to try that. I want to see how does that work?” You know.

34:56 CJ: Yeah. We speak the same language. That’s outstanding. What a great, great little interview here because I just… Everybody’s got their different thing, how the courses in the Academy has affected them and I just love the way you kind of combined some of the key elements that really determine success. We say this often that, in fact, in my own coaching calls with the students, most of what I talk about, and we’ll talk for a couple of hours and probably 95% has nothing to do with software or any particular app or anything like that because it’s these human things both in you and in your audience. The psychology of you, the psychology of your audience. Like you said, just how important it is for you to get over the concept of scarcity, impoverishment, these are real mentalities that war and neutralize people.

So people are literally in a doorless prison cell and there’s no guard at the door and yet still they stay there. So those plastic chains of their mind are much, much stronger than any real chains in life that they would literally hold themselves back from doing the very thing they’re wired to do. The very thing that they could make the greatest contribution to the world is the very thing they’re most terrified of. For whatever the reason is, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of rejection, whatever it may be. But they literally hold themselves back. Or they have, as you said, this mindset about scarcity and that the problem is not in the principles. The problem is something we messed up, or like I said, could be out of timing, could be you didn’t get your audience to where it needed to be yet.

So those principles are done too early or you do have a great audience, but you’re not applying them consistently. There could be any number of reasons and that’s again why as you said at the outset, the coaching element and interaction with other students to see what their challenges are is so important because you’re able to get this real panoramic view than you would have if you were just dealing in that plane of just you and your screen and a module. You need that extra input, don’t you?

37:23 Noe: You know, the biggest, most valuable thing that I have learned over this last year is this if people are not really responding, if you feel like you’re not being seen somehow, it’s because you haven’t made it visible. You haven’t made yourself visible and probably in my case, this was true for me for a long time. It might be that you’re kind of actually holding back from really stepping into your own fullness of your whole message and what you really embody and stand for in the world. Like, I learned… you said something that was so helpful. You said I said this in a coaching call, I think, I don’t prepare what I’m going to say. You said, “I focus instead on just preparing the messenger.” That really spoke to me. I realized when I looked at my feet that I wasn’t really there. Like I was sharing a lot of culture-related stuff but I wasn’t actually there.

How could I be expecting to show up and respond and interact with me when they didn’t even know really who they were interacting with and I made this decision then that I was going to get so fascinated by the things that I love that are core to my message. That I was going to live inside my… That’s not going to stop thinking of my artist identity as something that was outside of myself that was an ideal to aspire to. I was going to step inside. I was going to live it. I was going to make my whole life feel like the things that drive me to share my art in the world. I was going to live it more deeply and not only that, but I was going to put it out there. I’m going to risk it. I’m going to say those things that people are afraid to say.

And I committed. I committed to a rhythm. First, I was like, “Oh my God, I can’t even imagine doing this once a week writing a revealing kind of post once a week, so I’ll do it three times.” So I started three times. Once I had done three times, I was like, “Okay, I’ll do five times.” So now, five days a week, sometimes seven days a week. I show up, I write five posts a week, and they have to be something that either makes you think or makes you feel or ask some kind of question. You know that invites you to really reflect on something deep and to do that, it’s not easy.

I need to keep myself really inspired, but it’s been like the best thing I ever did for my music because I’m so in the heart of it now. Like I really am, I’m living it now. So it doesn’t take any… There’s no disingenuousness, it’s just so real. It’s so reflective of just my process and wherever I’m at. And when we focus on the things that fascinate us, that’s when we start to be able to create content that’s fascinating to others. We have to be fascinated.

40:43 CJ: Yeah, you’re absolutely right. I couldn’t agree more. As you were saying that, I was thinking of the ancient verse that says, as one senior minister is talking to a younger guy and he says in light of preparation, he said, “Meditate upon these things. Give yourself wholly to them that your profiting would appear to all.” And that’s what has to happen. It’s this to give ourselves fully to something and it should be a message. God forbid we’re devoting ourselves to television or mindless things that don’t produce any result. And it’s tempting because we live in a comfortable world. I mean, we can turn on light switches and set thermostats and order food and have it delivered to our house and things are seconds away, clicks away. You can get very, very comfortable and very, very at ease in a society like that.

So we almost have to be intentional about creating some hardship for ourselves. We have to be almost intentional to self inflict a little bit of healthy suffering to buffet the body as they say so that we don’t fall prey to those things. So that we can maximize our life and that’s our sacred duty, right? To maximize all that we are and all that we can do, hopefully for a purpose greater than ourselves. And I think that’s the key to fulfillment regardless of how much money somebody makes or how big a house they live in or any of those type of things, how well known they are. If they maximize all that they are all that they can do and do those two things for a purpose greater than themselves, I don’t know how you get any more happy than that. I don’t know how you get any more fulfilled than that.

I don’t know how you get any more content or satisfied because you’re then somebody that you can go to sleep with at night, which is a big thing for a lot of people. But then also the gratification of knowing that you did not betray what was inside you. You didn’t betray your gifts, you didn’t betray your creativity. That stuff is ready to come out. Your creativity doesn’t have a fear of rejection. Your creativity is not afraid of people. You have to get involved with that creativity to withhold it and restrain. And so I’m so glad to hear about your own personal victories, Noe in this particular thing because you are obviously a hardworking person, mother and artist and all of that when you came into the Savvy Musician Academy.

But now we gave you more things to be fussy about, more things to do, more tools to implement and you’re doing such a great job. So tell… I’ll include it in the show notes but tell everybody real quick who might be listening, how they can find out more about you.

43:34 Noe: Oh yeah, sure. So my website is noevenable.com and yeah, it’s Ethereal Folk Music For Seekers. If you’re curious to hear my music or see more about the way that I am storytelling and building community and culture, feel free to sign up for my free song sequence and see what I’m doing. I love doing that with other people. I love hearing whatever I was doing, and feel free to join my Facebook group, Nature, Spirit and Creativity. It’s an awesome group of people. If anything I’ve been sharing resonates for you, you might find some kindred souls there.

44:10 CJ: Yeah, and that’s Noe Venable so that’s, N-O-E and then V-E-N-A-B-L-E. So for those who are wondering how that’s spelled, Noe Venable. But Noe, he thanks so much for taking the time. I might bring you back some time to catch up on how progress is going. I think people are going to be interested to see more about what you’re doing down the road.

44:35 Noe: Thanks a lot CJ. It’s been a pleasure.

44:37 CJ: Once again, thank you, everybody, for joining me on The Savvy Musician Show, which you can do besides leaving a review. If you’re interested in getting connected with the Savvy Musician Academy at even an entry-level which you can do is sign up for the inner circle membership, which is a great way for you to get acclimated to digital marketing and learn a whole lot comes with a full-color newsletter that’s downloadable. You get an audio version of it, which I read if you’re not already tired of my voice just yet, and you also get a mini-tutorial there and it’s really, really helpful. People are raving about it. You can learn more about that at savvymusicianacademy.com/innercircle. Leah will be back soon enough. We miss her and we will see you guys in the next episode. Bye-bye.

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Leah McHenry

It's become my absolute obsession to find out what will make musicians successful today. In the face of many obstacles, and in the vast sea of the internet, we have an opportunity that has NEVER been available to us in the history of the music business.