Welcome to the 21st Century Musician Virtual bootcamp!

Now that September is here, it’s time to look ahead to the new season. How is the month looking for you? Whether it’s an expanse of unstructured time, or looking to be quite busy, you can get involved with this three-week event in whichever way works for you.


What is the Virtual Bootcamp?

The virtual bootcamp is a set of daily activities to help musicians make positive and proactive choices ahead of the new season. Whether you’re straight out of your degree or looking to get back in shape after a holiday, the next few weeks has something for everyone.


How do I join?

Just bookmark this page! A summary programme is provided, but a new link will go live every day for each daily activity. You can complete however many you like in your own time - no sign-ups, no pressure. And don't feel you have to stick to doing the one thing: on your travels round the 21st Century Musician toolkit you may end up finding resources you didn’t know were there!


What if I would like to get more involved?

We will be running chances to get more involved on our Instagram page, where you will be able to connect with other musicians doing the bootcamp. Be sure to tag us in your posts and use the hashtag #YCATBootcamp.


Here’s the plan…


Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday

12th - 

Making a positive start

13th - 

Taking the fear out of Tax

14th - 

Attracting Your Dream Collaborator

15th - 

Research some new music

16th - 


19th - 

Holiday (no task today)

20th - 

Arts Council Investment Principles

21st - 

Finding new focuses

22nd - 

Smash Your SEO

23rd - 

Young Freelancer's Guide to Mental Health

26th - 

From generalist to specialist

27th - 

Reboot Your Project

28th -

Putting the fun back into fundamentals

29th - 

Nailing it with Instagram

30th - 


So set a reminder on your phone and follow the hashtag, #YCATBootcamp: let's get September off to a flying start!

12th - Making a positive start

Watch Kate's video on making a positive start. How are you going to take her advice into September this year?

'Just' is a sneaky form of negative self-talk. Sometimes we don't realise that we're quietly putting ourselves down every time we qualify what we do with the word 'just.' It's OK to feel like what you do isn't the 'dream job,' but if you're talking to somebody else and use 'just' to describe their dream job then you can end up accidentally putting them down too. 

Over the next week, pay attention to where you use the word 'just.' Then ask yourself why you're saying that - do you really believe it? Is there something you could change to make yourself feel that less?

Good luck!

13th - Taking the fear out of Tax

You don't have to be a financial genius to get your finances in order for your tax return! It might seem a bit early, but having a halfway check in on your accounts is something you can do today. Are you saving enough for your tax bill in January? Josh suggests 25% so that you don't get any nasty surprises. Watch the video for all of Josh's million dollar insights!

14th - Attracting your Dream Collaborator

Our best work happens when we work with new people. Take Yshani’s advice and browse potential collaborators. Whose work are you loving right now? Could you connect with them? Sometimes it just starts with a social media follow…

15th - Research some new music

Don’t worry if you don’t have, or aren’t interested in, a cross-genre project, this is still for you! Take half an hour today to listen to some new music. Doing some research will help get those creative juices flowing. Watch Steve's video for all his advice on cross-genre projects and maximising your creative process.

16th - Yoga

Looking after your body is so important if you would like a sustainable career. Yoga is a workout for the body and the mind, so take some time out today to follow Matthew Jones's session, aimed specifically at musicians. 

20th - Arts Council Investment Principles

Are you writing a project plan and hoping to get Arts Council Funding? Make sure you check out Musical Director Leo Geyer's summary of the new investment principles to give yourself the best chance of success. Don't forget, there's also a downloadable sheet for you to keep and refer to!

21st - Ten questions to ask instead of 'what now?'

Having a focus outside of music is important for your mental health and your musicianship. Even better if it's something you are bad at: working through challenges and overcoming difficulty can improve your sense of self-esteem, which you can take into your music practice to help you manage challenges there too! Read the ten questions blog, then find something new and non-musical to do. You could even make a pledge with a friend and support each other.

22nd - Smash Your SEO

Start by Googling yourself. If your website and social media page the one of the top hits? Visit our guide to SEO and make some tweaks to get your site the attention it deserves. Remember that there is a glossary to help with all the new words, too!

23rd - The Young Freelancers' Guide to Mental Health

Taking care of your mental health as a musician is really important, and as early career musicians we have specific concerns all of our own. There are positive steps that we can take to care for our mental health so that small concerns don’t become bigger challenges over time. As part of bootcamp day 9, why not download the guide, settle down with a cup of tea and have a flick through? 

26th - From generalist to specialist

It is possible to say yes to too many things! Do you feel like it's time you got your priorities in order? If you're not sure where to go next, why not make a list? Do what George suggests in his blog, and rank your career activities from best to worst, then identify which parts of your portfolio need CPD or additional marketing.

27th - Reboot your project

Dig out a project: bonus points if it’s old and forgotten. Follow Chad's steps from the Reboot Your Project blog to re-ignite the spark.

28th - Putting the fun back into fundamentals

Do you feel like you're in a rut with your practice? Morgan Davison's Summer advice is also really useful for autumn as we make our way back into the new season. Try making a recording of yourself today - and watch her mini-masterclass for all her top tips!

29th - Nailing it with instagram

It can often feel like there is no 'magic formula' when it comes to Instagram, especially when the goalposts change so frequently! Read Barbara's updated article to learn how you can engage with your audience effectively and authentically this season.

30th- Meditation

Have you ever tried meditating, either to help you as a musician or just to improve your life? Join Shukri Devi Alison Gordon in her mini-master class to find out how and why to get started today!