Former Guns N’ Roses guitarist Ron ‘Bumblefoot’ Thal discussed most people in the music industry being people who are full of crap and blatant ripoffs.
He told The Sessions, “The music business, 99 percent of it are people that are just full of crap. I’m telling you straight up. Let me stare into this camera: 99 percent is B.S. … The music business is full of people that are just these manipulative survivalists that prey on passionate people, and there’s a whole lot of that. So you learn by getting screwed. [It’s] the best education you can get. You can take four or eight years of college, but until you’re getting screwed by the music business, by some nonsense record label, by a manager, some producers that aren’t really producers — they just get paid to sit on the couch while you’re doing all the engineering and they just sit back, eating on someone else’s dime, saying, ‘Do it again.’ ‘Well, what should we do different?’ ‘Just do it again’; you know, without a creative bone in their body — you learn what not to do. And it’s important — it’s very important.
“You should understand what every job, what every task entails so that you know when someone’s not doing their job,” he continued. “You should know how to manage; you should know how to book; you should know how to be a tour manager; you should know how to be a publicist; you should understand publishing and song placement and pushing that — you should understand all of it, and you should have some experience in it so that you know when someone is not doing their job.
Because what you really want, what you hope for is to be the dumbest person in the room, surrounded by people that are experts and so much more qualified than you in all the tasks that you’ve delegated to them. At the same time, you have to be very careful — do not hand them the keys to your kingdom, because they will take advantage, and they will steal.”