Over the past six months or so, there has been considerable talk about the use of reality television shows in the Australian media market. From Australian Idol to Australia’s Got Talent and back again, there seems to be an underlying label that is put on you from the moment you get on screen. However, if you’ve got the talent, shouldn’t the rest just come naturally, no matter of whether you utilise these outlets or not? It has been well documented of the rise and fall of these reality stars. Sure enough, Dami Im from X Factor a few years ago is representing Australia at Eurovision 2016, and Guy Sebastian is about to go on a national tour, however how much good does these reality TV shows do for you?
I have talked about this subject before, but with the auditions and media coverage for the latest series of X Factor to be aired later this year, it’s got me thinking once again about it. If I am being completely honest with you, I took the leap of faith to audition for X Factor and although I have never religiously watched these talent shows, it was a fun experience. Currently I am studying a Certificate IV in Music Performance, whereby it is encouraged that you step outside your comfort zone to push your own musical abilities.
From my journalism career, I have had the opportunity to interview quite a few artists that have been primarily on The Voice and the resounding consensus is that it does wonders for your career. Although I don’t really have the hard-hitting evidence and facts on which record label is assigned to each reality show, from watching from the sidelines it seems that if you make it into the top 10 of these shows, you are more likely than not, to get the publicity and marketing help to get your music out there. As a local musician that recorded his first EP on the cheap side of things, in a mate’s home studio, the glitz and glamour of publicity support is something that could do wonders for your career.
Although it is easy enough to do it yourself, it seems that the majority of 2016 is all about having connections in the industry and being able to utilise that to your advantage. Another reason to look into participating in these shows is the performance opportunities. Although it’s nothing new, these shows showcase the development of artists throughout the program’s duration, including boot camps where large international artists come and talk and help guide the artists. I.e. Katy Perry.
I know that it has been stated before, yet from chatting to various contestants, I don’t think that you would be selling yourself out if you went on these shows. Having the get go to publicise yourself and book gigs, although sounds easy enough, requires hard work and dedication that to some people may just seem a little too hard work. Having a clear idea from industry professionals (keep in mind I have never been involved with these shows) will help mould you into a respectable musician. It may take a while to ditch the reality TV nametag that you are given (if you so wish) yet challenging yourself and stepping outside your comfort zone is something that really will be a rewarding experience for you.
That said, it really is up to you. Despite many reality stars getting their 15 minutes of spotlight and then fading out to nothing, it can help nurture the talent you have been hiding away in your bedroom. If nothing else, having the opportunity to spend an afternoon hanging out with like-minded individuals is going to produce a laugh none the less. So what do you have to lose?
Written by Tex Miller