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Check Out Robbie Heights’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Robbie Heights.

Hi Robbie, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I got into music production as a way to give back to an art form that has been critical to my mental health. Whenever I’ve hit a low point in my life, music has always been part of my routine for getting me out. Whether I’m stressed out, anxious or depressed, all that disappears for me after bumping my favorite tunes and mixing in a little bit of exercise. I wanted to make music that could impact others in the same way that it has done for me. If I could create a track that could help one person get through a tough time, this would all be worth it. I’ve now been doing music production for about three and a half years with no formal education or background in music. What got me to where I am today has been a combination of watching online videos about music and tons of trial and error.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
This probably wouldn’t be an interesting interview if I said yes. Thankfully, it’s a definite no for me. It’s difficult enough to create a track that I’m happy with releasing, and when you’re trying to turn your art into a profession, there’s more to it than just the music. You need to think about promoting your music, graphic design, branding, keeping up with social media, networking, creating videos, and making an income while still trying to be healthy. Finding a balance between working on music and “the business side” has always been tricky. On top of that, things don’t always go according to plan, which can be very discouraging. I’ve had countless rejections from labels, several collaborations fall through, and releases perform worse than expected. But with any of the challenges I’ve encountered, I’m grateful to have gone through every single one of them because it’s pushed me to be better. Each bump I hit has been an opportunity to learn something new and makes each win that much sweeter.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I’m a self-taught electronic dance music (EDM) artist, and for those that are familiar with the subgenres, I specifically produce progressive house music. Basically, I make music for people to sing and jump to. I’m also a mental health advocate that uses my platform to encourage people to take better care of their mental health. I’m most proud of the Dancing On Stars Online Music Festival About Mental Health that I hosted in partnership with the Mental Health Association of San Francisco (MHASF) and four other talented electronic artists. We created an event where each artist showcased a one-hour music set and used short intermissions in between each artist for volunteers from the MHASF to discuss their experience with a mental health topic and share resources to help anyone seeking support. During the event, we made sure to include the phone number for MHASF’s warmline on screen, which is a non-emergency 24/7 line for anyone to call who is looking to talk to someone for emotional or mental support. We also set a goal to raise $1000 for MHASF with the event, and instead, raised $4200. I’m so proud of this event because it was a way for artists and fans to come together to support an organization that is making a difference in the mental health community, while also supporting their own mental health in a fun way. It made me so grateful to see the amount of support that was shown from the viewers and everyone involved. For anyone interested, the replay can be found at twitch.tv/robbieheights

Before we let you go, we’ve got to ask if you have any advice for those who are just starting out?
I love giving out advice and have tons of it, but to keep this interview from turning into a book, I’ll keep it to three. 1) Chase progress, not perfection. Every track I’ve released, there’s always something I know I could’ve done better on, but if I waited for it to be perfect, it would never be released. 2) Pace yourself. There’s a lot to learn and it’s going to take time. Trying to sprint through too many things at once is going to burn you out. 3) Enjoy the ride. There’s a long road ahead and if you’re not having any fun with it, this is going to weigh on your mental over time.

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