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30 Pieces of Advice From Music Industry Entrepreneurs

Over the past few weeks I’ve asked 30 extraordinary people in the music industry for their most valuable words of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs. Without further ado, here are 30 pieces of advice from 30 music industry entrepreneurs. Focus on what works now. “We are no longer subject to what was, only to what works. We can honor what came before us, but at the same time we have to be constantly aware of how fast this new generation moves. The new does not have to be scary and it’s allot less risky ...

Seven Strategies for Local Music Promotion

You’ve spent countless hours writing, revising, and rehearsing, and now it’s time to take your material to the stage and wow some audiences. While a tour bus, road crew, and booking manager are helpful when it comes to worldwide — or at least nationwide — musical domination, gigging locally and building a live following, honing your chops, and refining your performances is the recommended first step. Here are a few music promotion strategies to help you get attention for your music on a local level.
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von Grey Performs In Atlanta On Record Store Day

Record store day on 4/20 arrived in the southeast with a bang as sibling band von Grey took the stage at Criminal Records in the Little 5 Points district of downtown Atlanta. Comprised of sisters Kathryn (18), Annika (16), Fiona (15) and Petra (12), von Grey have been garnering a significant amount of attention recently from the likes of David Letterman, Conan O'Brien and Billboard magazine. After releasing their self-titled EP last year, the sisters have been on the road, building their fan base as they...

10 Best Eric Clapton’s Sideman Recordings

The most famous gig Clapton held before Cream was as guitar foil to John Mayall in the supremely influential British band the Bluesbreakers. It was there that Clapton was tagged “god” and played his role in the canonization of the Gibson Les Paul Standard. But everybody knows about the Bluesbreakers and their famous eponymous “Beano” album, right? After all, Clapton’s interpretations of “Steppin’ Out” and Freddie King’s “Hideaway” became litmus tests for the era’s up-and-coming blues pickers.

Three Good Reasons To Love Your Songs

In order to suffer the slings and arrows which are an inevitable part of trying to generate income from your songs, it’s a good idea to love them first. I’m talking about a very specific kind of love here. What I’m not talking about is the kind of desperate, dysfunctional love where your song is so dear to you that you’re crushed if someone doesn’t love the song as much as you do. The love I’m talking about is where, like a good parent, you’ve put all of your experience and effort into creating a solid, well-adjusted song-child and ...

BandPage Helps Artists Sell ‘Experiences’ to Earn Money On The Side

BandPage began as an insanely popular tool that bands could use to connect with fans (and vice versa) on Facebook, but now, it’s also a standalone Thing Of Its Own. The latest version lets fans do something new: buy BandPage Experiences, which are one-of-a-kind experiences with their favorite musicians [ed. note: the kind you might see on Kickstarter) — online guitar and drum lessons, personal hangouts, VIP access, and more. The web and apps offer great promise for letting fans and artists talk to each other ...

Songwriting Tip: Striking the Right Chord

One kind of "creative rut" that songwriters can easily fall into is when the chorus section of all their songs starts to sound the same. Some songwriters get into the habit of using the same chord to begin the chorus of every song they write. In one of my courses, we look at some of the many chords you can use to start your chorus as well as some of the successful songs that have used them in the past. Contrary to popular belief, there's nothing wrong with starting the chorus to your song (or bridge in...

Everyone's A Critic - The Collaborative Art (part 5)

In my last article I talked about the importance of joining and participating in a songwriting group such as NSAI. I thought I would deal with receiving and giving constructive criticism in songwriting groups. Let's start with preparing to present your songs to group. First of all, what usually happens at a songwriting group meeting? A normal NSAI meeting the group will usually start with a songwriting lesson. You may hear a talk about lyric construction, writing a memorable melody, etc. Then it's time to listen to new ...

Coachella Brings Its ‘A’ Game To Indio

North America’s most anticipated and groundbreaking annual music event arrives right here in the Coachella Valley this weekend. The 14th Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival will be held April 12-14 and 19-21 at the Empire Polo Field in Indio, with the same lineup of stellar artists scheduled to perform both weekends. This year’s event offers up an eclectic mix of rock, Americana, punk, electronica, ska and urban artists set to showcase their sounds. Sure the days (and nights) can be long, and the...

Rock’s First All-Female Band: Fanny

Few bands are more worthy of a prime spot in the pantheon of rock and roll pioneers than Fanny is. As the first all-female rock group signed to a major label, Fanny blazed a hard-won trail at the dawn of the ‘70s, through which the likes of The Runaways, The Go-Go’s and The Bangles could follow. As is often the case with those who break barriers, Fanny garnered less commercial success than they deserved, but they were hailed by their peers. No less an authority than David Bowie once said, “They were ...

Tim McGraw Shifts Gears on Two Lanes of Freedom

For more than two decades , Tim McGraw has been one of the Country format’s most consistent hitmakers. Yet with his latest album, Two Lanes of Freedom, the veteran artist feels as though he’s just getting started. “After the past 20 years of doing this, it’s interesting when you really feel like you are a brand-new artist but you’re not,” said McGraw. “The best part about it is I feel the freshness and the attitude that you have when you cut your first record, but I’ve got a vast well of experience behind me.

How To Tap Rhythm and Lead Simultaneously

For a while there, two-handed tapping had quite the stigma about it. Although players like Frank Zappa, Jimi Hendrix, ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons and Genesis’ Steve Hackett had all experimented with prototypical forms of tapping in the ’60s and ’70s, Eddie Van Halen really developed the style into a phenomenon, starting with “Eruption” in 1978. And then the imitators came. Once guitarists figured out what Eddie was doing, tapping became another flash trick, like pinch harmonics and whammy bar wiggling, that could ...

The Gibson Firebird: Happy 50th!

It’s quite ironic that he wonderful Gibson “Firebird” Guitar is celebrating its 50th Birthday, especially since I just started doing my new “Slide Guitar Summit” album, and the first sessions were cutting a tune with none other than JOHNNY WINTER! Johnny has long been associated with the original “reverse” Firebird design, and he has used it extensively since his very early days. It is easily one of the coolest “new” guitar designs ever created after the initial days of the Les Paul. It’s very true that with the creation ...

7 Simple Tips to Help You Promote Your Music on Twitter

If you want to promote your music on Twitter, there’s enough good data out there to inform your social media promotion efforts and help you maximize the effectiveness of each and every tweet. First, schedule your tweets at peak hours to get them in front of the most eyes. Second, you want to write tweets that encourage action (retweeting, purchasing, replying, etc.)! We recently attended a webinar by the internet marketing experts at HubSpot called “The Science of Twitter.” It’s full of interesting Twitter stats and...

How To Show Your Pedals Who's Boss

At first the only real pedal that was available was the fuzz - usually a Gibson Maestro - because effects like reverb and tremolo were taken care of onboard the amp itself, or maybe as an outboard reverb unit. You plugged these reverb boxes in between your guitar and amp, but they weren't exactly pedal-like in their operation. Eventually, new effects started to show up on the market: treble boosters, compressors, Wah-wahs, overdrives, distortions. Octave, phaser, chorus, flanger, tremolo, pitch shifter, talk box, envelope filter,...
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