Recording Artist Advocate: Christmas and the parties that go with it...

Again this year I hope you booked some well paying Christmas gigs.

Christmas and New Years! Great times for booking your band at the best prices.

Same advice as always: Schedule your end time so that people who want to stay later pay you extra for the privelage. (They'll take up a collection if they want you bad enough) Try to get extras - food or hotel acomodations. And don't let some alcoholic in the crowd get you too drunk to finish your set. You don't have to do shots just because they're free.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays - all of em'.

When you get back to a regular schedule, whatever that is, schedule some time in the studio and tell me about the great show you did.    

Recording Artist Advocate: Know what time it is...

At any given time there are ,figuratively speaking, many people with their "End Is Near" signs yelling at the world as it goes by. When everything is fine they are called cooks. When the bad stuff starts happening they are profits. The hardest part has always been knowing whats about to happen. Will you be a cook or a profit?

People look for patterns - in the stars, in demographics, in whats popular.

I say, "Go Deeper. Look at history."

History does keep repeating itself whether you know it are are totally ignorant. It just does. 

I've referenced the book "Pendulum" in the past. Even given links to videos about it. But now I recommend you get it for yourself. Look for "Pendulum - Roy Williams" and get it wherever you can. It's an easy read and deceptively easy to rush through, so you will want to go through it several times.

I'll give you some of the take-aways, but you still need the book:

Societies swing back and forth between two extremes. As we get too close to either side, we need people to say, "slow down! We're going too far!" 

When we start to change direction we need people to say, "Now we're on the right track!"

And when we're in the middle we need people to say, "This is nice, bon't take a good thing too far!" (…even though we will eventually, anyway.)  And then it starts again.

So where are we? Read the book. If you've been paying attention at all you will see it's all been predicted with uncanny accuracy. 

You have a story to tell - a song to sing. Now you can know how it will be received.



Recording Artist Advocate: Life's not fair. But it's still pretty good...

You can do everything right and still not get ahead. So give up.


(No, really long pause)

(Are you still here?)

(Wait just a little longer. They're almost all gone.)

Good. You're the one I wanted to talk to anyway... 

Or you can try again. Learn from that experience and go for it - again. You may change things a little as you learn. Babies don't just start out walking. They fall down a lot. You will to.       You didn't just start playing your instrument well. You sucked at first. You know a lot of people who still do.     

Learn about the most successful people and you will see failure after failure… Then Success!     I'm not saying two failures and then a success. You may fail a lot more than that. You will have little successes along the way too. You're never down till you're in the ground. So keep getting back up. 

Gigging regularly is success in itself. It can pay the bills. But don't get complacent. Keep at it and you can have the life you want. 

Just being the last man standing can get you a level of success. But you can still do more than that.

When you have a good song, well rehearsed and ready to put out there, call me.  





Recording Artist Advocate: Work Harder and Smarter - than them...

You've heard of the 80 - 20 rule, right? Or is it the 20 - 80 rule?

It's called the Pareto Principal. (Thanks Wikipedia) It's also called the "rule of the vital few".

In a nutshell, and for our purposes, l it just means 20 percent of bands will get 80 percent of the success. The most "vital" get the success. That should be you.

Before you say, "That's not fair." Then the universe isn't fair you crybaby. 

20 percent of salespeople get 80 percent of the business because they aren't afraid to ask for it and they ask more than anyone else. 20 percent of trees get 80 percent of the light because they grow higher and they get more water with deeper roots.

Rise above the rest the same way.

Write more songs so the 20 percent that are good make up for the 80 percent that suck. You know it's true. Some runts just need to be taken behind the barn.  Bam!

Ask for more gigs, and when you get a no - ask more venues. If you don't ask you don't get. And you'll ask a lot of times to get anything. A good booker is worth their weight in gold.

The more you play the more you make. Just don't get overexposed in one area. Be willing to move around - and book every venue that will pay you along the road there and back.

Lazy people will tell you it's not fair. People with less talent will tell you the system is rigged against them. Busy, successfull people will tell you there are opportunities everywhere.  In fact, the more you work and get known - the more opportunities come your way. Eventually you have to be more selective. There just isn't enough time in the day.  

Work harder and work smarter. Put your energies into the stuff that pays you back the most. What's your profit margin on merch? Downloads? CD's? Heck, know what it costs to drive to your gigs. If you play in a far away town, book another gig on the way there or back to make it profitable. DO more of the profitable stuff and ditch/curtail the rest. 

80 percent of bands are just going through the motions.  Let them fight over the scraps while you get better - and more successfull.








Recording Artist Advocate: Watch the movie...

Everyone in a band needs to watch "Rock Star" with Mark Wahlberg. It's from 2001 and it's about a rock band in the 80's up to the 90's, but there is so much you will recognize in your band.  Of course… it's based on real bands. (Mainly Judas Priest, but others also.)

OK, I'm getting ahead of myself. 

Don't read the Google or Wikipedia stuff - just watch it. You'll laugh out loud, maybe at stuff you have said or done. Thorough the movie I thought about things said during recording and practice sessions from people I know. You will to.

Besides a call to be humble and thankful, you'll see the machine that springs up around a successful band and how the people in that system can end up slaves to it.

But, watch it for fun. Think about the deeper stuff later.

I don't want to build it up too much. Just enjoy it.

Next time we get together we'll have that to talk about. 

But not too much. You'll want to make the most of your time in the studio - you know, actually recording music.