1. Focus on your craft first. Put in your time, and be great. Write amazing songs and be amazing on stage.
2. Give fans a reason to care about you. Help them identify something important about themselves in your brand.
3. Strive to make the audience want to emulate you, both on stage and off stage, with your genuine poise and personality.
4. Promote your music both online and offline, and never stop telling people that you exist. Promotion is a continuous process and not a one-time task.
5. Hang out with like-minded people. Support other bands and form powerful alliances.
6. Create the clique of the future. Remember that the musicians you know now will likely be heavyweights later (and you'll be best friends).
7. Learn how to bring in income on your craft (give lessons, play weddings, produce local artistes, etc.) so that you don't have to kill yourself for too long at some random, energy-draining day job.
8. Set yourself up for the long haul so that you can maintain some level of sanity and calmness. Not being able to pay rent every month can make you desperate. And desperation is repulsive.
9. Have a vision and a clear strategy to get where you want to go.
10. Stay away from the haters. Remember that haters are vampires and will drain your spirit.
11. Always stay positive and never whine!
12. Believe in yourself for many, many, many years.
13. Wear a smile and always be nice. People hire people they like!
14. Develop an exit strategy, but execute it only when you know you'll have no regrets.
15. Be grateful for loving music. Always remember that having a purpose in life is one of the greatest gifts that you could ever have.
16. Learn how to kiss ass. You will need it more than ever in this ego-fuelled industry.
And I beg you to put God first in everything you do. See you at the top!