We had the good fortune of connecting with John Clinebell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi John, do you have a budget? how do you think about personal finances?
I track every cent I spend, and since I started doing that 6 years ago it’s completely changed my life. I’ve got complete clarity on what my real expenses are, and having that makes it a lot easier to set myself up for the kind of lifestyle I want to live… as well as plan ahead for my future.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Building a producer / songwriter brand that people equate with success, quality and integrity takes time. I wish I could say it has been an easy career climb for me. I don’t think I’d appreciate what I have nowadays even half as much if it didn’t require a lot of persistence and patience… Those qualities have served me well over the years, and over time instilled belief in myself that I can keep pushing the boundaries of what I previously thought possible in terms of the projects I’m working on. I started out as a kid who moved to Los Angeles with wild hopes and dreams of stardom as an artist. I had almost no plan for how to get there, and wasn’t ever willing to admit that I needed a team, some support, that I needed help getting from point A to point B. I eventually failed out at sustaining myself as an artist, and “got a real job,” which honestly slowly drove me miserable. One day, I made a clean break from the corporate world, went on a trek to India, and came back with a completely new perspective on my career. One of the first decisions I made after coming back to the states was to become a music producer. This lead me to finding the route of music licensing as a way to sustain my music career. The incredible thing about it is that I’ve now had my voice heard by millions around the world, just in a different format than I originally dreamed that might happen! Over the last 6 or so years, nearly 40 media placements and hundreds of microlicenses later, I’ve built a successful freelance business producing, songwriting and teaching – about music licensing. It was all so worth it looking back. There were many times I almost completely gave up, and that makes the ongoing victory I’ve found in my life these days so sweet.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
When friends visit the area I like to take them to both of the Getty Museums and LACMA. I love art and of course music. Shows at Hotel Cafe or The Troubadour. So looking forward to all of these things opening back up again. One experience I love sharing with friends is dodgeball games with Eagle Rock Yacht Club. So fun to geek out to goofy jams while slinging playground balls around at your buds. We always go out to a divey spot nearby for some cold ones. I also love nature so going for hikes like Temescal or the one in Palos Verdes near the glass church, that’s something that can be done safely right now.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I wanna give a big shoutout to my dad, James Clinebell, who taught me at a very early age that being multi-talented is a gift, not a curse as many would have you believe. I think my undeterred drive to do ALL THE THINGS and have a good time doing them, to have a brave approach to being an entrepreneur, it all started with him. Also, I want to give a big shoutout to the Catch The Moon Music community. I’ve found so much love and support for what I’m doing musically there. Made lifelong friends. It’s crazy that I poured so much of my blood, sweat and tears into learning music licensing through their educational offerings, found massive success, and now I’m the one leading the charge (along with Sonnet Simmons) for indie artists and songwriters desiring real financial success in the music industry. It’s been one of the most profound full-circle experiences in my life and I’m forever grateful for it and the incredible people in the CTM community.