Dating in the music scene (especially when you are not an artist yourself), can be tricky, to say the least. When asked their position on getting with a musician, most people fall on either of two extremes: over their dead body or they will do anything to land one.
The mistake many of us make when it comes to dating musicians is holding on to only the good or just the ugly stories like it’s either fairy tale level or extremely bad. While the details might vary based on the type of musician and person you date, you will do well to go into it knowing what to generally expect.
Maybe it will be like in the movies, maybe not. Either way, if you are going to date an artist, you should probably look forward to the following:
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Dating a musician certainly has its rewards, but it also means odd hours and conflicting schedules. They will be absent more often than you will have them around, sometimes even when they are physically with you. The better part of your relations will be trying to squeeze out time to spend together, and even then, you may have to settle for having company.
Between rehearsals and gigs and tours, you'll quickly come to realize that these folks aren't as laid back as mainstream media make it seem. But hey, that also means you value what little time you do get together more, plus stolen moments are nothing if not romantic.
A highly insecure person might not enjoy dating a musician because there'll be plenty of chances to feel subpar. They'll be surrounded by people who seem better than you, and to make it worse, they will actually throw themselves at your boyfriend/girlfriend, sometimes right in front of you.
Even the best of them succumbs to these temptations eventually, but you have to understand it doesn’t necessarily mean they don't love you. Half the time, they are just making art, and even when something does happen, it’s mostly a right place, right mood type situation. But if you are the super-jealous type, this will be one of the hardest pills to swallow in the relationship.
Many of us have go-to music to remind us of certain times, but very few can point to songs that someone actually wrote for them. Many artists leverage the highs and lows of being in love to create soulful content, so yeah, you may get your time on-air even if they don’t credit you.
They won’t always be love songs sweet though, musicians who tap into their real feelings can also sing about the less dreamy things you do that stay with them. Unfortunately, drawing from their life experiences to make music also probably means there’s a ton about their exes. And you might have to relive their time together every time they play, rehearse, or perform those.
Unfortunately, if being a muse is what brings you together in the first place, chances are they will find another with time. Creatives need fresh perspective every time they can get it.
If your partner happens to find artistic inspiration in peculiar people who look a certain way, it wouldn't be realistic to assume they won't ever make that connection outside your relationship. Likely with someone who looks and acts like you did when you first met or better.
Not only would it be unfair for your date to expect to see you at every event they play at, if they get a lot of gigs, it might also be unrealistic. Unless what you two have is a relationship so co-dependent that they literally cannot get up on stage unless you are there, which obviously would be unhealthy.
The big career-defining gigs, sure, but the regular performances at your local dive bar or coffee shops are just work. Your boyfriend/girlfriend wouldn’t expect you to come root for them every time they have to go into the office if they had a regular nine to five, would they? Exactly.
For the gigs you do attend and the times their songs play out loud in your presence, prepare for the occasional unsavory comments from anti-fans. You'd think being something that comes with the territory that it wouldn't get to you so much, but it will. Especially when you know how much work your s/o puts into their art and they are not nearly getting appreciated enough.
If you think seeing people throw their underwear at your man is bad, the negative reactions are way worse. When this happens, take it as part of the job and don't always feel compelled to defend your date's talent, or you'd just be empowering the trolls the more.
Also, your partner doesn't have to hear about it every time people talk trash about their music, so protect them from those you can as often as possible.
This should probably go without saying since the actual art is what attracts most people to artists. But since we are putting things out there, you’d better get with musicians whose music doesn't make your skin crawl. I mean, one of the best perks of being involved with creatives is that you get to experience them create something meaningful from start to finish.
However, don’t expect to always love what they roll out. And even the ones you do like at first may quickly get tiring if you’re with them through the whole process of perfecting it from rehearsing to recording to editing, so you catch my drift.
If you are looking for a relationship where your significant other puts you above all else, no matter what, you should probably take musicians off your list. The reason even the most accomplished ones fail on the romantic front is that they can’t commit their 100% to their love life and their music simultaneously. And given the choice, they will almost always choose the latter.
My earlier statement on conflicting schedules won’t always be about rehearsal or even gigs. Sometimes, it’s their bandmates who need attention. Other times, it’s some big-fish producer they need to charm, and they will likely pursue both over you, even if they’ll feel bad about it later.
Musicians may differ in many ways, including their lifestyle, but one thing they all have in common is the need to practice. The more serious your person is about their music, the more rehearsals they are likely to have. A lot of these will happen at their place if they have a home studio, and it shouldn’t be mistaken for being free all the time.
Just because they are not on tour or selling out shows night after night doesn’t mean you get your quality time on slow days. Of course, you can always sit in on the chill rehearsals, but your presence might distract the more serious ones, not to mention they may not be fun for you.
Don't go into a relationship with a musician thinking you will make their music your whole thing unless you're their manager; in which case I wouldn't even recommend dating in the first place. Don't be all up in their business either. Trust me, you don’t need the details of what goes down on tours. Sometimes, the less you know, the better.
Even if music is your passion, too, have a separate everyday channel outside of your date’s career. Mixing it all together may seem like a way to get the best of both worlds, but oftentimes it just ends up leaving you in limbo.
The ability to remain in touch with their inner child, with little or no care for consequences, is a plus for creatives. They need to tap into their eccentricity to boost their imagination, so it’s not the worst trait to have. Nevertheless, it also means a lot of loose ends if they don’t have people “cleaning up” after them.
On the professional end, their managers and publicists will probably have it covered, but within the relationship, you may have to be the adult. Lying in the same direction might make you seem compatible at first, but you also have to be opposites in some ways to have any real shot at balance.
Musicians who play in bands are probably already in the most committed relationship they can manage. Since many of them live and breathe their music, they live and breathe it with their bandmates while simultaneously doing life and growing together.
These are their families away from home, people your partner will probably drop everything for at a moment’s notice, including you.
If you think sharing your ex with their friends on girls’ trips or boys’ nights was bad, you are in for a rude awakening. Think of meeting them as meeting the doting ‘rents or anyone else whose opinion of you might sway your partner because it can. What’s more? Don’t expect the bandmates to like you right away, especially if your influence on him makes him lose focus.
Back to the relationship itself, how are your massage and listening skills? While there will be instances of piled issues to thrash out with your s/o more often than not, you want to make the limited time they get to spend with you as relaxing as possible.
You don’t want your boyfriend or girlfriend to associate you with more stress, or they’ll avoid you. The truth is despite how fun it gets on the road, they miss their loved ones back home too. And for a sleep-deprived musician who is on their feet or in a seat a lot, piling on doesn’t exactly scream keeper move.
Another thing to make your peace with when dating a musician is that you could be the coolest in your field and still come close to your partner. Music has that age-old charm going for it, so honing how to make a complicated instrument look easy straight up makes them woke.
Add that with a voice to die for or an entourage that makes people swoon by just breathing, and you can see how the decks are stacked against you.
All good relationships make their share of concessions, agreed, but the possibility of you doing more of it is higher if you date an artist. If you are used to having your significant other throw their all into a relationship with you, for instance, you may now have to settle for stolen moments and sharing them with their crew.
There will be last-minute opportunities that’ll just be plain selfish to keep them from leaving you for, not to mention the usual late nights and long trips. There will be plenty of need to compromise in a relationship with artists, but if flaking is a dealbreaker for you, better not to bother at all.
Being with an artist, especially a full-time one, almost guarantees experiences that only they can give. Sure, you may have gone on multiple concert dates, but with this one, you know the star of the show is yours. Different locations, exciting activities and events, an entourage of the most socially dynamic set of people you'll probably come across, and more.
You may not be able to tell the next time you will get to be alone with your s/o, but you will at least be surrounded by enough drama while you wait. The reasons dating a musician is so challenging also conveniently make for a welcome distraction.
It sure feels nice to have bragging rights, like being the only one the talented lead guitarist has an eye, not to mention the other perks of dating musicians. But if you are a reserved person, what should count as a pro like there never being a dull moment with artists can turn out to be a con for you.
Your partner needs the clout to stay relevant in the highly competitive industry, and that for you means you are only guaranteed your quiet moments when the crew is away. And that’s if you are lucky enough to escape the paparazzi.
And not like the other groupies get to do, you may essentially be one but at least you’d be a glorified groupie. Like the groupie, other groupies want to be. Where the bottom feeders get a backstage pass or a good seat once or twice, being the lead guitarist or drummer’s girlfriend/boyfriend means you share perks due to the band.
Free drinks at the bar, all the access you could ever need backstage, making out with one of the most coveted people at the event, etc.
We are all thinking it, might as well say it out loud. One of the reasons hanging out with musicians is always so lit is that the prospect of getting great stuff brings all the party people around. The more successful a band or group, the better the quality of plugs they attract.
This is not to fuel the stereotype about musicianship and the use of drugs, but we all know there’s no smoke without a fire. (No pun intended.) So, if that’s something you are into, I guess that’s one more thing to anticipate.
If you're thinking of dating a musician for the money, think again. First of all, they are subject to the gig economy, and while they may have their high seasons, the inflow isn't always steady. Sometimes all your boyfriend/girlfriend will have lined up are unpaid or low-paying gigs.
Even super successful artists who spend recklessly can end up poor, so always have a financial backup plan before considering a committed relationship with one. Also, be sure to set something apart for rainy days when you might need to chip in more than usual.
What’s that saying about the best of creatives being tortured souls? Those who do music full time especially have pressure coming at them from different directions. The need to meet up to their fans’ expectations, not let their band down, finding the balance between making good music and what sells, and of course, staying relevant over time.
These are stressors that can lead to mood swings, not to mention drugs, which only make things worse. Then there’s the anxiety and depression that are so prevalent that 73% of musicians suffer them. I’m not saying your date will be part of the majority, but get ready to support them through it just in case.
We aren’t all made for the spotlight, but one of the best things about the music industry is the fanbase. Once someone starts making waves, you suddenly see people take more interest in their personal life, who they are seeing, and whatnot.
More often than not, the exposure attracts more critiquing than you’ve probably ever had to face in your life, but if you’re lucky, they’ll adore you just like they do your guy/girl. Unfortunately, having your popularity tied to your partner can also mean going down with them or losing it all if you break up.
Finally, before going all-in with a musician, you should know that the odds of living happily ever after while they still actively pursue their music are not great. Not that there aren’t artists who pull it off, but those are not the majority.
The reason being all the points already made on this list and because fewer and fewer people are willing to stick it out in relationships anymore. Dating a musician will be an exciting ride for sure, maybe even your most romantic yet, but it may not be much more than that if you’re not one to persevere.
It’s no fairy tale, that’s for sure. The musician may write/sing you a song or two, give you special recognition at their shows, and moving with them generally guarantees lots of fun moments. However, it also means being the adult in your relationship, conflicting schedules, rowdy/randy fans, among others.
Some people go with attending their shows or even as far as following them on tour. i.e., groupies. But you have to stand out among the multitude that also wants to get noticed by the same person by doing something the musician wouldn’t expect from an eager fan.
Bragging rights. Great weed. A chance to roll with some of the coolest people you’d ever meet. Backstage passes. Claim to fame. Being with a creative. Never a dull moment. Most importantly, lots and lots of teachable moments.
Take an interest in their music, but not in a flattering kind of way. Musicians tend to respect you more if you can constructively discuss their music with them without necessarily insulting or kissing their ass. Being exceptional at singing or playing musical instruments yourself is another way to go, especially when you have a unique take on it.
Yes, there are multiple dating sites for musicians and music lovers alike. Many of them like Tinder, we have musician dating, Vampr, Tastebuds, Tendermeets, Clikd, eHarmony, Elite Singles, and more.
So, you see, dating a musician is just like with every other guy or girl out there, just with a lot more need for support than you might be used to. It may not be the easiest thing you’ll do, but it’s not likely to be your worst dating experience either. Depending on you and what you’re looking for, of course.
Let me know your thoughts on this list, as well as tidbits of your own if your boyfriend/girlfriend is an artist or you’ve dated one before. If you enjoyed the article, your network might, too, so feel free to share.