Monthly Archives: March 2014

THE BENEFITS OF BREAKING THE RULES

The Essence of Innovation is in realizing, very quickly, that everything You’ve been read, researched and written doesn’t have to apply to this new project, With the exception of having to obey the laws of gravity, you can pretty much make it all up as you go along.

That’s how the songs came. One verse at a time. A Chord here – A Phrase there. The melody crawled up your back while you were in aisle 12 at Wal Mart and when you got finally home, what few notes you did remember worked!

So why are You trying SO Hard at ‘Making It’ via the preset instructions of the ballyhooed entertainment industry? A&R is Dead.       Getting Discovered is a not even a childhood fantasy anymore. The EntreMusician doesn’t pore over industry lists to submit her music to the big budget flicks. She writes, produces, directs, films, edits and stars in the movie and then submits her own grooves for the soundtrack. By the way, she’s playing four different characters in the movie! Distribution is Dead. Her fan base downloaded the individual scenes and assembled the story line that best fit their own script!

Success is better pursued when we forget, forsake and break free from the well worn paths and create our own sound and means of putting it on the big stage. Sure it may take longer, but its far more fun and we own it.

 

I was listening to George Clinton as I wrote this…

Tagged , , , , , , ,

The Case for Soul & 25 Albums I Could Never Part With

It’s not impossible to sell records devoid of soul. You can make quite a lucrative career without it.

In fact, soulless music seems to be much in demand – or at least that’s what the gatekeepers lead us to believe.

Have You noticed that No One sweats on the big stages anymore or makes those ugly “I’m in intense pleasurable anguish because the funk is hitting me very, very hard right now” looks? And when was the last time You bobbed your neck so hard to a new groove, you needed a sedative?

It’s hard to believe it’s been almost a quarter of a century since Chuck D asked the question everyone was pondering, “Who Stole The Soul?” and with the exception of a few Indie EntreMusicians like Frank McComb, Marlon Saunders or Martha Redbone, no artist of major label status has returned it.

Now I’m not trying to split hairs about this. There’s been slick, cool, hype and some funky tunes that have hit pay dirt, but the overwhelming majority have lacked the greasy essence of in yo’ face emotion that songs, of any genre (except Lawrence Welk) used to require.

I was listening to Jackie Wilson’sDoggin’ Me Around” this morning. Although the song is a meaningful ballad of a love turned stone cold, clearly intended for a pop audience, his adding that mammoth “Yeeaaaaaaaaaah” made his point last longer! The funk nasty Wurlitzer piano intro that coaxed a tender young Michael into his “I Got This” crooning on “Who’s Lovin’ You” drips with more soul than James Brown allowed and we won’t even get into his mighty story!

Smokey Robinson (who penned “Who’s Lovin’ You”) also beat the smash out of the soul bone with “You Really Got A Hold On Me.” I could go on, but you get the point…I Hope.

Again, there IS Music out there splashing grits and gravy, but you have to hunt for it. It used to be center stage! 

I believe we can turn it around. Calling All EntreMusicians!!

Below, I’ve placed 25 albums I’ve been digging on lately. It seems I can’t get these out of the CD player once I put ’em in. They are mostly jazz, but they ALL Got Soul!

In No Particular Order:

Bob James – Grand Piano Canyon

The Crusaders – Chain Reaction

Herbie Hancock – The New Standard

Michael Brecker – Wide Angles

Earth, Wind & Fire – Spirit

Dave Holland Quintet – Prime Directive

Traut/Rodby – The Duo Life

Wilton Felder – We All Have A Star

Pleasure – Future Now

Foley – Directions in Music

Stevie Wonder – Fulfillingness’ First Finale

Phillip K Jones II – Sticology

Pat Metheney Band – The Road to You

Kirk Whalum – Into My Soul

Bernie Worrell – All The Woo In The World

The Eagles – Greatest Hits Volume 2

Ernie Isley – High Wire

Donald Fagan – Kamakiriad

Parliament – Chocolate City

Paul Simon – Graceland

Billy Barber – Lighthouse

LA Boppers

John Pattitucci – Sketchbook

Jim Couchenour – Quiet Canvas II

SounDoctrine – Inspire

Feel Free to Send YOUR List – Let’s Trade Notes! I might do 25 More Next Week!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

PERSEVERANCE 4.0

How Many “No’s” Does It Take for You to Throw in The Towel?

How Many Rejection Letters, Slammed Doors, Unanswered Calls, Unreturned Emails and Unkind Remarks can you stomach before You Call It Quits?

Is it 1, 10, 100?

Are You Easily Offended, Overly Insensitive, Diffident, Shy, Unsure?

Or Do You Believe You’ve been placed on this planet to influence God & the whole, wide world with the gift placed inside You?

If so, then Your gift is just the start. And Your gift itself is not enough. Something more is required and its something You may not have been born with, but better have if You plan to emerge from the basement. 

Perseverance is the breastplate You’ll need to do battle in the marketplace. It’s playing like You’re sold out when only 22 people showed up. It’s sending the next email and making the next phone call and driving the next 12 miles to make the next meeting only to smile with sheer confidence when they shake your hand and say “No Thanks.”

It’s believing beyond anything you can verbalize or write down or explain to your husband or wife. It’s Seeing It, Living It, Dressing for It, Praying for It, Begging, Borrowing, Bartering and Still making it to rehearsal on time to show the band the New Song You’ll present to the next 22 people.

Perseverance is knowing you should – and can and will – even when the winds of resistance have taken on the force of a tornado against You and all that You sing for. It’s Gritting Your Teeth. Standing Your Ground. Holding On while the Blood drips down your fingernails. And that ain’t no Lie. This is the life of an EntreMusician.

Can You Dig It?

I was playing some of my original music while writing this…

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,