Never Ever Give Up—Just Look at these Memorable Rejections

Never Ever Give Up—Just Look at these Memorable Rejections

Ready for some good news? 

Let’s face it, as a hard-working artist, you sometimes can’t help but get tired of the constant hustle and bustle. But musician/entrepreneur Nick Voorhees, founder of Melody Nest, suggests that for starving musicians/producers, the positive news is there’s an increasing demand for your creative product as “Forbes reports that Americans are spending more time listening to music than ever before.” 



Created in 2018, Melody Nest is a freelance marketplace for the music industry. It serves as a networking platform for graphic designers, audio engineers, musicians, and vocalists to provide their professional services to help musicians and music producers build their careers. And, Voorhees positively asserts that, “The ability to create music is a valuable skill set, and it’s something the world actually needs. I started Melody Nest because there are plenty of opportunities in the world for musicians and music producers, but not enough tools to find and properly utilize them.” Melody Nest offers such invaluable tools, with Voorhees adding, “Melody Nest creates a specialized, original, and fundamentally creative business that changes the way musicians of all types navigate the industry.”

But, even though we’ve just begun a New Year and decade where we all have dynamic new resolutions and hopes and expectations, the bittersweet siren call of rejection is never that far off.


So, Nick Voorhees wants to remind fellow music or non-music industry pals who may feel worn down by the daily grind, that there are classic examples of “rejections” that turned out fabulously alright in the end, including:

1) The Beatles were rejected by a major record label before they got signed.

2) Lady Gaga was dropped from Def Jam Records after she released her debut album.

3) J.K Rowling was rejected by 12 publishers and was living on welfare when she first wrote Harry Potter.

4) Dr. Seuss was rejected 27 times before he was able to get his first book published.

5) Steve Jobs was fired from his OWN company.

6) Ed Sheeran said he was getting constantly rejected by record labels at first and was told he was "slightly chubby and ginger," making him bad marketing material.

7) Vincent Van Gogh only sold ONE painting and that was 2-3 months before he died.

8) Jay-Z couldn't get any record labels to sign him at first, so he sold CD's out of the trunk of his car.

9) Billie Eilish was 14 when she wrote “Ocean Eyes,” put it on music sharing platform, SoundCloud, at 15 and then at 18, she just swept the 2020 Grammys, wow!

10) Insert your own story here:

My own personal rejection/success story, as I told Nick Voorhees, is this:

My Italian “godfather” Sonny Grosso, famous French Connection detective and later an award-winning TV/Movie producer, recently left this mortal coil for permanent lodging in the Great Restaurant in the Sky. The French Connection, which was based on his and his NYPD partner, Eddie Egan’s exploits on the drug addled and mean streets of New York, was eventually turned into a book and then, after much rejection, a 5-time Oscar winning movie. In his posthumous and upcoming memoir, Harlem to Hollywood, My Real-to-Reel Life, by French Connective Detective Sonny Grosso, he told me:

“The French Connection was initially turned down by every studio, including twice by some studios. But producer Phil D’Antoni and director Billy Friedkin persisted, and they tell how Fox’s Dick Zanuck finally called them in, saying, ‘Okay, I’ve got a $1.5 million sitting in a drawer, if you can make it for that, go ahead!’ As Sonny Grosso added, “It’s those kind of moments that make movie magic.”


So, as Melody Nest’s Nick Vorhees reinforces for us, these “legendary names are a friendly reminder to accept your losses and to learn to love the grind. And that, odds're much closer to what you want than you think.”

For musicians, you may have to reach out to support platforms, like Melody Nest, but—Never, ever, give up!

Check out Melody Nest’s secure website, their very helpful Blog page, Facebook page, Twitter, and Instagram.

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  • Toni Tirkkonen

    When life gets hard and you reach your lowest point, you can either give up or get up.

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Toni Tirkkonen

    True, enough, Toni, but sometimes we can't do it all on our own. I've leaned on support when I needed it. And, if you're a musician, Melody Nest can help. Cheers! ;)

  • Marie Hardwick

    Growing and learning is uncomfortable at times but that’s a sign you are reaching a whole new level

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Marie Hardwick

    Making mistakes and failing is part of the journey, and it is about the journey, hopefully we can enjoy it as we grow. Are you a musician? ;)

  • Fred Worthington

    Pain and struggle is the key to greatness so embrace it!!

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Fred Worthington

    Fred, I believe the Buddha also said that...thanks for commenting. Are you a musician or artist? ;)

  • Tom Banerjee

    Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Tom Banerjee

    Stick your toe in and go for it, right? Thanks for commenting.

  • Lee Milligan

    Excellent article

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Lee Milligan

    Thanks Lee, I think you might've posted on my stories before. Much appreciate it, if you know any musicians who need support, point them to Melody Nest. ;)

  • Wade Donovan

    Keep going.... Brillant idea.....

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Wade Donovan

    Simple things, eh. Billie Eilish went from SoundCloud to sweeping the Grand Slam at the Grammys because she and her producer brother kept going. Thanks for commenting. ;)

  • Sam Eastick

    Great article

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Sam Eastick

    Much appreciate it, Sam. Are you a musician yourself? The failure/keep going/success concept can work for us all. ;)

  • Sam Eastick

    In reply to: ashley collie

    No I am not an artist but I love music.

  • Josh Hodgson

    Letting yourself fail is where you learn the most. You can do it. Treat failure as an opportunity to learn, and you will get where you want to be.

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Josh Hodgson

    Spot on, Josh. Sometimes, it's challenging to see at the time, but we mostly learn through our mistakes and rejections. Cheers! ;)

  • Ahmed Hussain

    I can't thank you enough for the motivation

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Ahmed Hussain

    Ahmed, you are welcome, keep on doing it, mate! Thanks for your comment. ;)

  • Gina Dipierro

    Uplifting article. Applies not just to artists but to so many trying to succeed.

  • ashley collie

    In reply to: Gina Dipierro

    Thanks, Gina, yes it does! Cheers for commenting!

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Ashley Jude Collie

Entertainment Expert

Ashley is an award-winning journalist/author/blogger who has written for Playboy, Toronto Star, Movie Entertainment, Sports Illustrated, Maclean's and others. He's interviewed various "leaders" in their fields, including: Oscar winners (Matthew McConaughey, Jennifer Lawrence, Alicia Vikander, Jane Fonda, Mira Sorvino, Geena Davis, Anthony Hopkins); Grammy winners (Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, Ice Cube, Pete Townshend); MVPs in sports (Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Wayne Gretzky, Kobe Bryant); and, business leaders (Amazon's Jeff Bezos). He has an upcoming novel, REJEX, coming out on Pulp Hero Press. And he has written several episodic TV shows, appeared on CNN, and blogged for Mademan, Medium, GritDaily and HuffPost.


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