Making music is something I enjoy, and it’s something I do as a ‘serious hobby’. I have pretty basic equipment for this digital age -a 6 year old recording and mixing machine (8 full tracks plus the 4 double tracks), but then I mix on the laptop using freeware audacity. And lately I’ve been recording guitar straight through an effects peddle and a drum machine. It’s fun, but it’s still hard work.
Would I like it to be sellable? Sure I would, but first I have to take it up to ‘pro’ standards with, recording in a better studio and then getting it mastered. But then, it still needs an audience, people who’ll appreciate the kind of music I’m doing. I guess it’s like all forms of culture and entertainment -people need to be able to relate to it.
I may be an Australian but I’m no cricket fan. To me, it’s just throwing and hitting a little red ball that’s occasionally caught -but to some cricket fans, it’s the meaning of existence. Now, if all cricket fans are taken out of the equation, it doesn’t matter how skilled they are, how good the spinner is, how many times the batter hits it out of the field -it’s meaningless to non-cricket fans. No matter how many hours a day they put into their game, they’re not going to make any money from it.
I guess my point is, it doesn’t matter how much work you put into arts/entertainment/sports, if there’s no potential audience, you can’t earn any money from it nor do you deserve anything for it. Only if there is a potential audience -people who will genuinely be interested, then you need marketing to bridge the gap. In the digital age with so much available and so little time/attention space, you need the right kind of marketing (unless you can obtain a grant as a special cultural heritage etc…). Without the marketing and the demand, you don’t have a product that’s sellable.