In years gone by, it was entirely possible for an athlete, an actor or a musician to get by purely on talent alone. In 2017, athletes are models and investors. Actors are DJs on the side. Musicians are juggling writing and producing music, with curating social media content and making vital connections within the industry. Success is now as reliant on hustle as it is on talent.
The delicate balancing act for the modern musician starts in the lab, where the advent of home studios means we are now experiencing more self-contained artists than ever before; it’s not unusual for one artist to handle the writing, performing and production of music, all from one place. Simultaneously, artists are handling their own administrative work, presenting their best work on social media and staying on top of trends from new sounds to new streaming services and online tools.
The unique lifestyle of the modern musician is nothing new to entrepreneurial Australian artists Maribelle and Young Franco. “I’m a self-managed artist so I take care of all the day-to-day admin work that is involved,” says Franco. “I also try to be proactive with putting myself out there, particularly with overseas opportunities and connecting with other artists.”
The balance of so many aspects of the lifestyle, from making music to networking and social media, is a 24-hour grind.
“It’s like a full-time job,” says Maribelle when asked about the importance of social media. “I already have three jobs as a writer, producer and artist. It’s super hard to stay active online all the time. Artists don’t get enough credit for it.”
Despite the round-the-clock hustle, Franco is clear on the ultimate goal; “it's an expectation you place on yourself as an artist to continually grow and reinvent yourself.”
It’s reinvention which is necessary in 2017. Whether it’s updating tech or adapting your offering to suit current trends, the hustle doesn’t stop for modern entrepreneurs.
The art of taking the traditional role and adapting it to fit the unique challenges of 2017 is something we’re seeing not only artists do, but also Nike. Taking the classic Air Mariah, updating the already feather-light silhouette with Flyknit and a Zoom sole is a perfect example.
Before we look at the current incarnation of the Mariah, it’s important to get familiar with the classic running silhouette’s history. The Mariah was first seen in 1980 as a lightweight running shoe with a full-length Air sole. The sneaker quickly became a favourite on the competitive running scene, as records were broken at the 1980 Moscow Marathon, and the Mariah was seen on the soles of 1982 New York Marathon winner Alberto Salazar.
As a favourite among runners – both competitive and recreational – Nike continued to upgrade the Mariah with updates in 1988 and 1992 before a largely unheralded refresh in 2010.
While the previous releases streamlined the sneaker, nothing was quite as revolutionary as the 2017 update. The all new upper is not only sporting a new shape, but is now even lighter with the addition of Flyknit. The Zoom sole is equally supportive as it is adaptable; updating the traditional ‘running shoe’ role of the Mariah to something more flexible and uniquely suited to 2017.