Norah Jones: ‘It’s so hard for musicians to make money now’

Singer Norah Jones calls the music industry “messed up” for young artists as no one is spending money on music anymore.

The Come Away With Me songstress is back with a new album after a four year hiatus. Day Breaks is Norah’s sixth solo album, and hits shelves from 7 October (16), nearly 17 years after her debut release.
A lot has changed since Norah burst on to the scene, particularly with regards to how people pay and consume music. When asked by GQ Australia what financial advice she’d give to aspiring musicians, the 37-year-old suggests being wise with money.

“Try to, if you get any kind of deal doing anything, be super smart about it and aware of what you’re signing. But you know, not everybody has that luxury,” she said. “It’s really hard to make money playing music these days. It’s really hard for young people, nobody’s buying records, nobody is even paying very much for streaming services so it’s messed up for young people right now. But hopefully it will work out somehow someway.”

Another area that’s blown up in the last decade is social media and self-promotion. The Don’t Know Why singer admits she’s awful at that side of things, and was “lucky” to get her break before websites like Twitter and Facebook were created.
“But I think it is really hard for musicians starting out today, it’s such a great tool, but not everyone I know is good at self-promotion,” she pointed out. “You know, if you’re not good at that part of it, it’s a lot harder. And a lot of artists I know, that’s like the furthest thing from their personality. Sure, they’re excited by what they do, but constantly telling people to come check you out – that’s like a whole other personality trait.”