In this series we will be highlighting burgeoning entrepreneurs in the modern era. These are folks who have taken the risk of quitting or working double to quit their conventional jobs in pursuit of their passions. This is a difficult road that many never find the courage to venture upon, but the rewards are so worth it, and as you know, no risk, no reward, know risk, know reward.

This episode highlights Craig Levy, musician, sound engineer, artists whisperer. Craig saw his industry falling apart, and decided to hone in on the things he does best. This approach, rooted in gratitude and simplicity has afforded Craig freedom and fulfillment. Read his story to learn more about how he achieved such a zen like balance.

Tell Me A Little More About What You Do And How You Got Into It

To make it easy i call myself a "music producer" but i handle everything from writing and playing instruments around an acapella to just recording vocals for my mc's who bring in finished instrumentals to mixing and mastering… basically whatever anyone thinks i'm good at :)

Do you Remember Your First Day? What Were You Feeling?

Yeah i almost threw up!

What Were You Doing Before? Why Made You Want To Try Something New?

I worked at atlantic records in the a&r department when the music business was thriving.. and i left right when it was imploding. for the next few years i drifted until i started recording my own music and fell l in love with it. about a year later i put up an ad on craigslist and the rest is history…

How Do You Balance Your Time?

Honestly i have a hard time with that… i found "my thing" and it's still an honor 13 years later that people like what i do so i find it hard to say no…

Tell Me About Your Business?

I simply charge per hour ($40) and my artists come over and we do whatever they have planned: record, have me write around their vocals and play instruments, mix, master. they are often also part therapy sessions: it's the artists choice what goes on during their time so we may talk for a bit…my psychology degree gets put to good use :)

How Much Time Per Week Would You Say You Dedicate To Your Work?

Probably 40 hours in sessions and another 10 or so doing the un-fun business stuff.

What Else Do You Like To Do With Your Free Time?

Biking, hanging with my girlfriend and our cats.

What's Next For You?

More of the same in terms of making music with my artist's daily, but dedicating more time to licensing… i've had over 250 placements so far but would like to see it really take off. either way it's fun to see your tracks on tv.

Any Advice For People Wanting To Follow A Similar Path?

Be ready to dedicate your whole life to this! it really does take 10,000 hours.


To learn more about Craig or to book you recording session now, click here...

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What do you do when financial hardship hits and you can't make your monthly mortgage payments? This is a question on many homeowner's minds as nearly 17.8 million Americans are reportedly unemployed during the coronavirus pandemic.

When homeowners face financial hardship, such as the loss of a job, they often look to obtain a forbearance agreement from their lender. A forbearance happens when your lender grants you a temporary pause or reduction in monthly payments on your mortgage. Forbearance is not the same as payment forgiveness, in that you still have to pay the entire amount back by an agreed-upon time.

Mortgage lending institutions differ on their mortgage relief policies and qualifications; however, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act were signed into law in late March of this year to protect government-backed mortgages.

Federally backed mortgages include:

  • Fannie Mae
  • Freddie Mac
  • The Federal Housing Administration (FHA)
  • The US Department of Veteran Affairs (VA)
  • The US Department of Agriculture (USDA)

Under the CARES Act, homeowners with a federally backed loan who either directly or indirectly suffer financial hardship due to coronavirus automatically qualify for mortgage forbearance.

Even if your mortgage is not secured by one of these agencies, you still can call and see if you qualify, as many lenders will still offer the option in order to avoid foreclosures.

Under the CARES act, homeowners can claim mortgage forbearance due to financial hardship from COVID-19 for up to 12 months without requiring any documentation or verification. During the forbearance period, mortgage lenders cannot charge late fees or penalties.

Additionally, as long as your mortgage is current at the time you claim forbearance, the lender is required to keep reporting your mortgage as paid current throughout the entire period.

At the end of the forbearance, the CARES act protects consumers from having to make a lump sum payment. Instead, you will be given a repayment plan from your provider. Since repayment options vary, it's important you ask your provider about all of your repayment options.

Possible Repayment Options:

You may be eligible for a loan modification at the end of your forbearance. With modification, the mortgage terms are changed in order to add payments that were missed during the forbearance onto the end of the loan, extending the term.

Another option that may work for some is a reduced payment option. This allows you to keep paying monthly payments at a reduced amount. The amount missed is usually added back into the monthly payments at the end of the forbearance.

For example:

Regular payment: $1000 per month

Reduced payment: $500 per month

Payment after forbearance period: $1500 (until caught up)

Balloon payments, or lump sum payments at the end of the forbearance, are prohibited under the CARES Act. However, mortgage lenders may require homeowners who are not protected under the CARES Act to make a balloon payment at the end, so again it is best to check first with your provider.

Mortgage forbearance should only be considered in true financial hardship. In other words, just because of the pandemic, you should not take a forbearance on your mortgage if you can still afford your payments. Likewise, if you are able to start making payments before the forbearance period is up, it's best to do so as soon as possible.

The Next Steps:

Before you get in touch with your mortgage servicer, save time by gathering as much documentation about the mortgage as you can. Also, be ready to list your income and monthly expenses. Due to an influx in calls, financial institutions are experiencing extremely long wait times right now, and having your information at the ready will help.

Have questions ready to ask. Here are some questions you should be asking:

  • What fees are associated with the forbearance?
  • What are all the repayment options available to you at the end of the forbearance?
  • Will you be charged interest during the forbearance period?

If your forbearance is approved, make sure to keep all documentation pertaining to it. Make sure to cancel any automatic payments to the mortgage during the forbearance period, and keep tabs on your credit report to make sure your lender doesn't report the loan as unpaid.


For more information on forbearance, contact your lender and discuss your options. If you need more assistance with understanding your options, you can contact a local agent for the housing counseling agency, or call their hotline at 1-800-569-4287.