Crushing Classical

Crushing Classical podcast is an ongoing series of provocative interviews with musicians who are pioneering a new path in the classical music genre. I dig into musician's lives who have made an often risky move towards forging a unique path and creating a different kind of music career for themselves. This is particularly challenging in a field where the conventional approach is seeking employment in an orchestra. Join me and learn how others are redefining a thriving classical music career.
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Crushing Classical





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Crushing Classical: Redefining A Thriving Music Career

Sep 7, 2017

What you'll hear:

- How speaking his mind led to a gig following and observing Georg Solti around Europe

- The real world impact of striving for perfection (and what the real goal should be)

- How to determine who the "best" people are for YOU personally to stay connected with to help build your career

- Why you should be observing "the greats" in your field (and the surprising career side benefits)


...and much more


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Use the code CRUSH to receive 10% off your order.

Mentioned in the interview:

About David's orchestra:

Nicolas Harnoncourt videos:

Mozart, with LangLang:


Sep 3, 2017

What you'll hear today:

- The difference between "having" debt and "being in" debt (one of these two actually BENEFITS you)

- Why paying off your home quickly is one of the worst things you can do (this will turn your head upside down)

- The 4 rules of the financial institutions that are actually RULING your financial life (and how to take back control of it)

- How to begin applying the same principles banks use (that makes them rich) to your own financial life so you can benefit the same way they do

...and much more

For more information and to work with Mike Beausay, you can email him at 


If you're not signed up yet and you know you want a UNIQUE classical music career by your own design, sign up for our upcoming 7 Day Challenge! It's FREE to join and it starts TUESDAY September 5th!

Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical.

Use the code CRUSH and receive 10% off your order NOW!


Aug 31, 2017

What you'll hear:

- Why the very BEST time to introduce your idea/project/movement to the world is when it's BRAND NEW (and you don't know what you're doing yet)


- How and why being the HUB of where the conversation is happening is one of the smartest things you can do (and how to go about it)


- Why having pre-determined "content" is no longer necessary...and what to share instead


- The very BEST way for your audience to find you (this will excite and scare you all at once)


...and much more


Join the Crushing Classical 7 Day Starting Line Challenge!

Click here to find out more:


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Use the code CRUSH to receive 10% off your order now!



Aug 27, 2017

During this episode, you will learn:

- Why making yourself happy FIRST should be your #1 goal every day

- Why you should say NO twice as much as you say yes...and how to know when to say yes

- How your obsession with accommodating others is actually an obstacle to reaching your goals

- Why ALL conventional wisdom is complete nonsense (i.e. "go the the gym first thing in the morning")

- and much more


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. For high quality sheet music, order from 

Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order

Aug 24, 2017

On this episode, you will learn:


  • The multiple ways you are likely "winging it" in your approach to music making (and the impact it's having on your results AND your career)

  • Why undergraduate music majors who desire a unique career should strongly consider pursuing a different type of music degree (this will surprise you)

  • How to prepare *completely* as a conductor before rehearsal (and why you should never "run a piece down" with an orchestra out of the gate)

  • The very BEST way to correct mistakes that empowers and enables those around you

  • The #1 concept almost no one employs in lessons, rehearsals and performances...that comes directly from your own LIFE

...and much more


If you have any questions for Cliff Colnot, you can email him directly at


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Order NOW using the code CRUSH and receive 10% off your order.

Aug 20, 2017

On this episode, you will learn:

- The #1 thing that is *continuously* in the way of all the things you truly want to accomplish (and it's not going away until you confront it)

- Why food/eating is such a huge deal as you are pursuing your goals (no, this isn't a diet lesson)

- The true source of stress, overwhelm and confusion (and how you can eliminate it right now)

- How and where to use visual cues so you know for SURE if you are *actually* on a track toward pursuing your goals and dreams (this is simple and effective and you can start immediately)

...and much more
Aug 13, 2017

What you'll hear:


- How a single text message sent the two of us into a tailspin...and what we took away from it (we filet ourselves just for you)


- Why we strongly resist being labeled, defined or shoved into a box here at Crushing Classical (and why you should too)


- Why Tracy hasn't published a book yet despite her promise to do so back in January (if you've ever made a public promise and failed, you will appreciate this)
- The #1 thing you can do to help others who are doing great work that is directly impacting your life (and it helps you right back)


...and more obviously. Because there's always more.

This was a tough Fireside Chat for us. We debated about doing it at all. We're human. We struggle. That's what this conversation reveals.


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Order now and receive 10% off your order with the code CRUSH:


Aug 10, 2017

Here is what you’ll learn:


The #1 thing you keep hoping for that literally STOPS the possibility of building a career you truly want (Hint: it isn’t fear)


Why starting an ensemble while you’re still in school is actually smart...and the many advantages you’ll have if you do


The incredible importance of ditching the “volunteer” and “do it for free” mindset as quickly as possible...and how to make that shift for yourself


Why it’s critical to create a MUCH larger vision for an ensemble other than “playing gigs and making money”


...and much more


Thank you to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical

When you need high quality sheet music, look no further than

Use the code CRUSH to receive 10% off your order

Aug 6, 2017

What you'll hear on today's show:

- The biggest reason why you haven't yet achieved that thing you say you want MOST

- The BEST thing to do any time you experience setbacks on your journey (this can actually help turn things around for you)

- Why you should consider keeping your biggest goals and intentions mostly to yourself

- The ONLY reason why failure is such a problem for human beings...and how to immediately reframe it for yourself

- How to engineer ENJOYMENT from the (often) painful and unpredictable process of pursuing and achieving a goal

...and much more


Thanks to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Order now and get 10% off your order. Use the code CRUSH 

Jul 29, 2017

On this episode, you will learn:

- The most *critical* money advice for classical musicians that you can implement immediately

- The ins and outs of active and passive income...and how to *immediately* get started building BOTH no matter where you are in your life/career right now

- The most logical first step toward wealth that you probably aren't doing (or thinking about) soon enough

- The best way to get out of "survival mode" (if that's where you are) and begin building an abundant future for yourself

- The automatic 1% advantage you possess as a classical musician...that you AREN'T applying to other important areas of your life...and it's costing you!

- and so much more


To contact Jonathan Fink:

For more information about the financial advisor that Jon talks about on the show:


Christy Barilotti

Thanks to Ficks Music for sponsoring Crushing Classical. Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order. Let Ficks take care of your sheet music needs!


Jul 23, 2017

On the show today we cover:

- Why it's so important to "double down" (vs. relax) once you've achieved something

- The minimum amount of income you should strive to earn when you are first starting out as a freelancer (i.e. business owner)

- Why creating a unique career is particularly challenging in the classical music world vs. the business world

- What "legacy work" is, why it matters and how to uncover YOURS

- and much more


Thanks to Ficks Music for being a sponsor of Crushing Classical. Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order!




Jul 20, 2017
- Why having an inflated sense of how good you are at a particular thing can actually catapult your unique career in classical music
- The MOST important thing to do anytime you collaborate with others (it either makes or breaks the collaboration)
- How to know for sure whether a 9-5 job with a paycheck is right for you (it's not right for everyone BUT it's right for some!)
- The meaning of "leverage" and why it's so important when you are growing your career
- and much more
Jul 16, 2017

On the show today we cover:

- How Curtis Institute is taking a groundbreaking and holistic approach to classical career creation socially and entrepreneurially
- The biggest mistake you're making right now when it comes to truly connecting with your audience
- The #1 thing you MUST consider before EVER saying yes to any orchestral job you win
- Why you can't rely on luminaries like Yo Yo Ma to forge the future of classical music (and why you're suited for it as well or better than they are)
- The two most dangerous assumptions classical musicians tend to make when it comes to their undergraduate and graduate educations
...and much more
To find out more about Mary Javian and the program at Curtis:
When you want affordable sheet music at a great price, use Ficks Music!
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Jul 12, 2017

What we talk about:

Jennet Ingle: Seeing Opportunity So You Can Monetize What You Love


- How to uncover opportunities for income streams that are literally sitting right in front of you (this will certainly surprise you)


- The most effective ways to take what is merely an idea and make it a REALITY


- How to become a powerful negotiator so you can live life on YOUR terms (Hint: There's a two letter word you don't use nearly enough)


- How to see your way through a situation where you think you're "stuck" and turn it into an income opportunity AND the best thing that ever happened to you


- How to learn and perfect the art of GROWING your work so it keeps paying you more and better each and every year


...and much more


Thank you to FICKS MUSIC for providing the hosting for the show! Great selection of professional sheet music at affordable prices!

Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order!

Jul 9, 2017

Here’s what we cover:


- The #1 thing stopping you from moving beyond wherever you are right now (and what to do about it)


- Why you rarely act on the great advice you're given (that you know could change EVERYTHING for you)...and how to alter that behavior in yourself


- Why ignoring what you KNOW is true or right for you (that gut feeling) is actually dangerous...and how to overcome it


- Why evolving yourself and embarking on a unique career is the *ultimate* heroic act...and how to gain momentum quickly


...and much more


Thank you to Ficks Music for providing the hosting for the show. When you need sheet music, look NO FURTHER than

Just for Crushing Classical listeners - Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order

Jul 2, 2017

Phil Snedecor, a trumpet player with a lucrative and varied career came on to share his insights on creating a classical career design on your OWN terms.


Here's what we covered on the show:


- How to *quickly* establish yourself as a freelancer in a brand new (to you) area...even if you don't know a you can get some gigs and get paid!


- What it *actually* means to "take ownership" of your career NOW (and from the moment you step out of undergrad)


- How to know if the ensemble or group you want to start has a better than average chance of being successful in your community or city (most people don't consider this before launching one!)


- What your day should ACTUALLY consist of if you want to build a personally satisfying and financially successful career


...and much more

For more about Phil Snedecor:

Thank you to FICKS MUSIC for providing the hosting for the show. When you need great sheet music at an affordable price, look NO FURTHER than FICKS MUSIC. Order NOW and get 10% off your order for being a Crushing Classical listener by using the code CRUSH


Jun 28, 2017

David Taylor is a cellist and founder of Yorkshire Young Sinfonia, a youth orchestra program in England. What began with a modest audience of around 200 has grown to 550 within two years.

Here's what you'll learn from my interview with this very ambitious, forward thinking music director:

- What *actually* goes into starting a youth orchestra program (some aspects might surprise you)
- How he "modernized" the symphony to create a totally unique experience for the players (and therefore the audience)
- Why he thinks classical music may no longer have a right to exist...and what that means for you and your career

David's blog:

For more information about the Yorkshire Young Strings program:

Thank you to Ficks Music for supporting the podcast! Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order on high quality sheet music at affordable prices!



Jun 25, 2017

 Here is what we covered today:


- Why the ever popular saying "You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with" is actually BACKWARDS


- Why people whine about their social media feeds (Hint: it's their own fault)


- Why swearing off Facebook is one of the LEAST intelligent things you can do (and no, being on Instagram isn't the same...or enough)


- The "two headed" approach you need to develop if your desire is to be financially successful


- Why the Social Media Selfie revolution isn't (and will never) build your career


- And so much more!


Thank you to our sponsor Ficks Music for providing the hosting for the show. If you're looking for high quality sheet music at great prices, look no further!

Use the code CRUSH now for 10% off your order!

Jun 20, 2017

Have you ever thought about starting a chamber group...and wondering what it could lead to?

Kara LaMoure pursued chamber music in college "just for fun"....and spun it into a vibrant career. She is bassoonist of the wind quintet, Windsync, and a founding member of The Breaking Winds, a bassoon quartet.

Find out why taking the first step is the ONLY way to see "what's next" - and why it's a requirement for navigating a career as a chamber musician.


Thank you to Ficks Music for providing the hosting for the show! If you're looking for affordable sheet music look no further than 

Use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order now!

Jun 18, 2017

Has the sentence "I didn't become a musician to be rich" or "I do this because I love music and money doesn't matter" ever come out of your mouth? Or, are you unhappy with the amount of money that you make as a musician? There's a lot of ways you can think about money that can be detrimental to your success as a musician. Most of these conversations are inherited both from your childhood and the existing conversation about money held by musicians and artists everywhere.

Today on the Fireside Chat, Eileen and I talked MONEY with Jonathan Fink, professional freelance cellist and successful real estate agent in the Philadelphia area. Jon shared how HIS approach and relationship with money has changed since evolving his career to include real estate and we dove into what you can do to change the way you think about money.


To find out more about Jonathan Fink, check out his website and social media:

Twitter: @finkj 


Thank you to my sponsor Ficks Music- use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order:
Jun 13, 2017

On today's Hot Seat episode we had saxophone player and music education major Isaiah Jackson. Isaiah came on the show today to explore career options for himself. He told us that he has so many likes in the music field that he doesn't know what to do, and doesn't even know where to start. This Hot Seat helped Isaiah organize all those thoughts and set him up to make a move in one direction. Often the hardest part is to just start, and this episode was a great starting point.


Thank you to my sponsor Ficks Music- use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order:
Jun 11, 2017
Are you in a bit of a rut walking into the summer?
Didn't get into that festival you wanted?
Are you taking lessons...yet not feeling particularly motivated about it?
Haven't identified a particular goal worthy of your time and energy?

Say no more! We've got a fantastic game for you to play...WITH US. :)

On Fireside Chat #14 (coming out THIS SUNDAY), we discussed how to reinvigorate your music career starting immediately.

We also publicly announced a game we're playing - and we invite you to play with us.

What you’ll hear on this Sunday's Fireside Chat:

- The exact reason why most people (musicians included) aren't winning in life (you'll be surprised at the simple concept this is)

- Why you don't need to be "famous" before you start a unique career (it's actually better if you're not - and you'll see why)

- Why playing this game with us could SIGNIFICANTLY change your life and career in the next several months

This episode is for classical music students, music teachers, college/univ professors, freelance musicians, chamber musicians, tenured orchestra players, soloists - EVERYONE.

Tune in!
Join for the discussion after the show:
Set to SEE IT FIRST, don't miss a post:
Thank you to my sponsor Ficks Music- use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order:


Jun 9, 2017

On this episode I had Allan Santos, a bass player who I was introduced to through our mutual friend and fellow podcaster Jason Heath (who we talk about on the episode- see link to the post we talked about below) and when I heard about his interesting career evolution, I had to have him on the show… Allan is a bass player who went into teaching yoga and afterwards became a life coach. He tells the story about how a big change in his personal life was the tipping point for him to start exploring other options in his career. Often times that’s how it happens, and Allan shares his whole story. After yoga he went into life coaching, and we talked all about what that was like to change gears in his career and all that goes into starting a new business. We dove into finding meaning in your life as a musician, as well as commonly held beliefs about money by musicians and artists and how it affects your life--- and how your comfort zone can actually be not such a great place to hang out in for too long… and a lot more! Stay tuned.

The post we talked about on the podcast:

Allan's Facebook page:

Join the conversation about this episode on the CC Facebook Group page:

Thank you to my sponsor Ficks Music- use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order:


Jun 4, 2017

On today's Fireside Chat we dive into a topic that I wrote about earlier in the week that I dubbed Old School Abuse- when a teacher's style is abusive, which includes yelling and a demeaning tone. It is truly an unacceptable approach and we aim to out it here at Crushing Classical with hopes that it no longer continues. If more students can recognize in the moment that they do not have to endure this kind of treatment, it can stop. And going through it can teach you something about how you handle situations- it certainly did for me, and we talk about it in-depth on this episode. Later in the episode we discuss branding and also what it means to really stand up for something (or yourself) and how that actually looks on a day-to-day basis.

Thank you to my sponsor Ficks Music- use the code CRUSH for 10% off your order:
May 29, 2017

On this episode I interviewed Anni Hochhalter and Garrett Hudson of the woodwind quintet WindSync. If you ever considered a career as a chamber musician of your OWN group, going on tours and creating unique concerts, you're in the right place. Listen to this episode to hear the full report from two musicians who have been doing it for the bulk of their professional music careers. This is certainly a challenging yet rewarding style of classical music career. On this episode Anni and Garret get into the nitty-gritty of what it takes to create a chamber music group and build a career out of it.


Don't forget to order music from! 10% off using the code: CRUSH


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