Tag Archives: Musicians

Take Time to Make Time

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Creatives Often Live In The Moment. Our Art is Our Life and Life Is Now!

EntreMusicians Equally Embrace & Employ Such Instantaneous Inspiration, but We Know that Our Ultimate Advantages are Rooted in Intense, Focused Planning for the Days, Months & Years Ahead. We Define Ourselves Differently.

The Tightrope for Most Musicians I know is Scheduling Time to SCHEDULE Time for Their Dreams & Goals because the Phone is Constantly Ringing.

That’s A Good Thing. Their Working! BUT… (Read The Rest Here!)

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Seven Major Mistakes I’ve Made As A Bandleader

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Author & Speaker Dennis Waitley once said, “Mistakes are Painful when they Happen, but Years Later a Collection of Mistakes is what is called Experience!”

So it is with a measure of honor and some distinction that I count myself among the most ‘experienced’ leaders out there, as a result of  the many humdingers I’ve cast upon my various band mates over the last 16 years with my current band, SounDoctrine and other projects. While I am grateful to still call 97% of my associates Great Friends to this day, I am confident the remaining 3% are calling me several other adjectives!

Today I Bear My Soul & Confess My Sins to You in the hopes that My Blunders Create Stepping Stones for You wherever You May Be on Your Musical Journey!

 

1) Failed to Plan 

Although I have blogged on this point several times, it continues to climb to the #1Spot for things going wrong for the EntreMusician. There will be many times where True Emergencies surface and the “Unexpected” rears its head, but most often it’s our failure to look at our Projects & Performances from a 360° angle and dissect all of its components. Checklists are as much a Best Friend to an EntreMusician as is a Rehearsal. Ask Questions of Your Team and Then Ask More. Have You Considered Everything? Many Times I Didn’t and I Fumbled Every Time! Dr. Steven Covey’s Book“The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” marks as Habit #2 ‘Begin With The End In Mind’.

 

2) Didn’t Pay Attention To The Numbers

Not Being A Numbers Guy (At All), I didn’t get the adage that they don’t lie! So I would usually rely on what my gut was telling me. I did not budget. I underestimated costs and overestimated profits. I halfheartedly listened to my accountant (an obsessive numbers guy) who warned me, cautioned me and chided me when I disobeyed his advice and did the gig anyway…Further, It Cost Me In Taxes, although I had software which would calculate inventory for me, but was relying on me to punch in the data – and I was too lazy, slow and stupid to do it myself, or hire someone to do it for me. So I LOST Huge $$

 

3) Did TOO Many Promotional Gigs

“Exposure” Can Be a Very Tricky (read Dirty) Word for the EntreMusician, Especially As You Are Just Starting Out. Most Promoters and Venue Owners Will Say that Word 12 Times Or More on Your First Phone Call, Cementing Into Your Psyche that You Actually Need Them to Reach the Audience You’re After. Most Often You Will. But You Should Know When You Don’t. I Didn’t. So, I Spent the Better Part of Our First Two Years Counting on Free Gigs To Get Our Name Out There, Often Very Afraid To Ask for Money. Promoters would Promise us that If We Did a particular Event  for them THIS Year, for“Exposure”  they’d pay us the NEXT Year, But It Would NEVER, Ever Happen!

Finally, When I Began to Actually Charge Some Real Money for the Group, I Felt Stupid that I had Gone So Far Down The Road Without Requesting Moola! Unless the Performance was related to the right Radio or TV audience, I have eschewed the Dirty Word. (More Below on Point #6)

 

4) I Didn’t Sign Agreements

Repeat After Me: “I Can’t Repossess My Performance!” Once You’ve Sung Your Song and Played Your Kazoo, That’s It.

If the Venue Owner has stiffed you on the Sheckels, you better have sold a ton of merch so you can get back home – provided you had an agreement which allowed for you to keep 100%…And the Answer is YES! I Did Drive the SounDoctrine Van All The Way to Philly on a mere Verbal Agreement, just so the Promoter could explain every reason why he couldn’t pay me what he promised…Of Course Now, We Don’t Even Start the Van, Until We Get It In Writing

 

5) I Didn’t Promote Often or Accurately

Obviously, this specific Flaw began before the Now Normal Social Media Blitz, but my Earlier Methods Morphed Into Big Mistakes because I kept attempting to make Our Social Media Platforms behave like Traditional Marketing & Promotion. Early On, to Save Money, I Didn’t Do Enough Promotion, trying to get by with sub par Posters and Flyers that didn’t properly convey our brand (or much else). I became a little more savvy with getting SounDoctrine on Radio & TV segments, but the hours of our appearances were unsustainable – no one was awake and those who were, were on their way to work!! It took me a while to build a base socially, but even when I did grab a foothold, it seemed I was always on the back end of what was trending months earlier. Now I subcontract work to a professional!

 

6) I Didn’t Charge Enough $$

This point is actually an extension of numbers #2 & #3 above, as we had moved beyond the phase of promotional to paid performances – BUT, It wasn’t much Beyond Gas Money! I hadn’t gauged our popularity nor the momentum we were building, so instead of calculating actual costs and asking accordingly, I also didn’t possess the confidence to push back on the first bid. I felt I should settle for what I was being offered, lucky to have the opportunity to perform. While some of that is true, a Real Win-Win, especially for your band, is that everyone can feel great about doing a wonderful job which also profits them financially.

Allow me to say here, that the Venue Owner and/or Promoter needs to make a profit too – and there are some very reputable, honest ones who want to see the Artist and His/Her Music Expand. They have overhead, expenses and employees and should receive appropriate fees for their hard work. But many of them are so focused on their bottom line that nothing else matters. Neophyte Musicians are usually operating on advanced emotional stimuli and can’t see beyond the stage. The Objective is to be as passionate about receiving the income you deserve as you are for the Incredible Experience You are offering them. And Don’t be Afraid to Say “No, Thank You” to any deal that is not the best for You and Your Artistry.

 

7) I Didn’t Stay Focused

With Complete Transparency, I Must Say that This is an area Which I continue to Work On.

If I am not Absolutely Careful, I Can Allow a Variety of Interest to Capture My Attention. All are Musical and Each offer their own level of reward. It’s Important that I Maintain My Focus, Prioritize the Goal and then become Brutally Intentional about seeing the project from Conception to Completion. As I Review, each time I’ve Lost Focus, I’ve Lost Consistency. Conversely, All Gains I have been blessed to accomplish, without a doubt were the instances where I held a laser light focus on what was Most Important  and Worked It Off until it Worked Out. I am a firm believer that Every EntreMusician CAN Do It All. Many Times We Must – But We Cannot Do It All At Once, so the Next Time We are Faced with 12 Simultaneous Ideas, Pull Out the Scribble Board and begin asking some the Serious WHY Questions and move into the HOW with Careful Planning (read #1)

 

These Seven Rabbits have proven to be Major Mistakes which have most led to my Career Detours which could have completely derailed me. I am grateful to have learned from these experiences.

I am sure you have your own set of criteria to look to as what “Not To Do” in Your Artistry. Please Share Your Advice So We All Grow Together. Remember to Sign Up & Download My Free E-Book “50 Engaging Ways to Transform Your Fans Into Family!”

 

Watch The Video!

Peace & Blessings!

Jere B

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The Awesome Avenue of Asking

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There is a Wonderful Biblical Principle that is Engaging, Encouraging & Empowering no matter what Your Worldview may be. Spoken by Jesus Christ in His Sermon on The Mount in Matthew 7: 7-8, He shares this Priceless Gem: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” A Deeper study into that passage of the Original Language reveals that Jesus is saying to Continue Asking, Continue Seeking and Continue Knocking! Persistence is the Key to Open The Door!

The Fear of Asking has stifled the Dreams of Millions! The Initial Preconceived Emotion of Rejection handicaps us from even picking up our bat to take a swing, let alone getting us to first base! The Problem is that we can be so overly (and needlessly) intimidated! The worst scenarios immediately into our minds and we instinctively begin to ostracize ourselves into the mire of what we believe Others will think of us! How Dare We Pursue Our Goals & Dreams! How Dare We Ask Them to Help Us?! Further, How Dare We Ask Them to Step Aside as We Garner More Territory!

Another Biblical Example that comes to mind is found in Numbers 13 when Moses sends out 12 spies to go into the land God had promised them and Ten of them returned scared witless, claiming “…We felt as small as grasshoppers, and that’s how we must have looked to them.” Only Joshua & Caleb had the stones to Move Forward and thus, only Joshua & Caleb Actually Entered into the Promised Land!

The Awesome Avenue of Asking is paved with Courage! To begin Gathering Nerve is found is the Ability to Get Over Yourself and just Start Making Requests!

Begin TODAY by Asking for Any & Everything You Can Think Of! It’s Perfectly OK to Start Small.

Ask A Co Worker for $0.75 cents and pay Him/Her back before the days end. Ask a Close Friend to Borrow $150 till Friday and Pocket It until then, paying them back promptly. The Joy is in simply getting started. The Next Time You’re in Your Favorite Store, Ask the Manager for a lower price on something that is clearly marked significantly higher and up the ante by having your money in plain site!

My First Point is, All They Can Say is NO!

I once walked into a Guitar Center asking for a Less Expensive Online Price of a certain Digital Recorder I wanted and the young, naive, prideful little Whatshisname refused me. So I kept my car in their parking lot and walked a few blocks to the Smaller, ‘Soon to be shut down by the Behemoth’ Music Store and Asked of them the same question. They obliged my request. I returned to GC with my New Unit and Receipt and Asked to Speak to the Manager, recounting my recent experience with his salesperson and my subsequent victory with his competitor. The Now Embarrassed Manager knew he had lost $200 trying to save $44.76 and had quite the conversation with his protégé. Perhaps that’s why they too may not be around long…

If You’re from New York or travel there much, You Soon Learn That EVERYTHING is Up for Negotiation! But Your Silence Guarantees You Will Never Have a Seat at The Table if You Don’t Ask!

My Second Point is All They Can Say To You Ultimately is NO and perhaps Sprinkle in a Few Expletives for Emphasis!!

I’m Learning to Ask for More Outrageous Things Consistently. I recall the Very First Time I asked an Extraordinary Price for My Band, SounDoctrine, to play a Gig and the Promoter said “Yes!” While immediately thinking I should have asked for at least $1000 more, I surmised that I’d never venture far from My Now New Standard Price ever again. Although this decision sometimes bites like a double edge sword, in that we hear a lot of Giant NOs, meaning we perform less, yet every time we do perform, we are playing more prestigious dates at better terms and conditions!

ASK for a Better Seat at that Swanky Restaurant! ASK to Be Upgraded to First Class For FREE! ASK to Speak to the Owner of the Company! ASK for an Opportunity to Open for That Artist or Better Yet to Headline The Event (They Will  Certainly Remember You!) ASK for Airplay on the Larger Stations! ASK for a Free Subscription! ASK for Your Post to be included in That Periodical! ASK for That Door To Be Opened and then ASK Again Next Week/Month/Year!

This Week, I’ve just asked a Core Member of a World Renown Group who will be playing our city this Friday (tomorrow) if I can interview them for This Blog. I have yet to hear a word from them and I just might receive another NO, but what if it becomes a YES?

So What Are YOU Asking For? What Incredible Opportunities are YOU Imagining Might Come to the Surface simply by gathering the grit to Open YOUR Mouth and Begin Inquiring?

My Third Point hinges on the scripture I began with as Jesus wraps up His thoughts on Asking. He says in verse 12: “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” 

In Other Words, While You Are Rehearsing the Process of Asking, What Are You Preparing to Give, either to them directly or to Others whom May Ask of You so that the Law of Reciprocity may Flourish In You, Through You & Around You!

So Let’s Get To It!!

I’ve began a New Video Channel  to begin driving some of these and Other EntreMusicianal Points deeper into the subconscious of Us All.

I humbly Ask You to Watch, Like & Share this Content  with Your Fellow EMs and in turn I promise to continue to Progress & Develop Greater Programs of Dialogue, Resources and Avenues to Engage, Encourage & Empower!

Thank You for Taking the Time to Read These Words.

I was Listening to Azymuth‘s “Rapid Transit” On Vinyl while composing this blog.

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14 Absolute Guarantees You Will Never Be Called Back

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Every EntreMusician has either had to Deal with a display of Unprofessionalism of Another Band/Team Member at One Time or Another. Some of us (Including Myself) have unfortunately brought such obnoxious behavior to the table and wondered why the thing fell apart, or moved on without you.

Below, I have included 14 Absolute Guarantees that You Will Never Be Called Back if You Possess these Obnoxious Characteristics!

1) Arrive Late.
2) Make Several Excuses for Your Tardiness. Justifiable or Not.
3) Be Unprepared.
4) Make At Least One Excuse for Why You Didn’t Learn the Tunes. Any Excuse Will Do. 
5) Show a General Disregard/Disrespect for the Person who Hired You. 
6) Arrive Inebriated or become so during the Gig. 

7) Develop & Maintain a Crappy Attitude that worsens throughout the Evening. 
8) Use tons of profanity, especially on stage, specifically on the Mic.
9) Ridicule Any or All Band Members Onstage from the Microphone. 
10) Bring a Spouse/Significant Other to the Gig and Argue with them throughout the evening. 
11) Return to the Bandstand Late for the 2nd/3rd Set. 

12), Openly Squinch, Laugh and/or Point at the Bass Player Every time She Hits a Wrong Note. 

13) Aggressively Offend Any or All Members of the Audience On or Offstage. Especially if they should Deserve it.

 
14) Place Your Talent  Above Your Unprofessionalism and try to Outdo Everyone Else on stage with Your Brilliant, Illustrious, Completely Longer than Necessary Solos, thinking that because Your Gift IS Brilliant and You Sound So Wonderful and Have the Whole House On Their Feet and Under Your Sway that the Entire Band & Bandleader will simply forget the other 13 Abominable Attributes You Bring to the Table and Beg You to Come Back Next Friday…In Fact, the Third Time You Pull This Stunt, The Audience will have caught on and will no longer provide the Energy and Attention You Seek.

Perhaps I Have Forgotten One or Two Things You Feel Should Be on This List.

If So, Please Enlighten Us By Commenting Below…

I was listening to Bernie Worrell‘s “All The Woo In the World” On Vinyl while posting this.

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Forget The Misses!!

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At the time of this writing it’s safe to confess that I’ve blown it no less than 1752 times or more in 2017, with respect to my Personal, Professional and otherwise Preferential Decisions and there are still a few days left in this year! Obviously I am not proud of these missteps, which have hindered certain goals and advancement, yet I have long since Learned to Value the Lessons Every Blur & Blunder taught me. Each Chastisement has brought with it the understanding that I should not Extensively Linger on the Embarrassment, Shame or Guilt, but Appreciate the Gift of Another Opportunity to try again.

Once an Unexpected Bomb has Exploded, Our  very next moves as EntreMusicians should be to immediately Confess the Transgression(s), Ask Forgiveness, Seek Reconciliation and Move Forward, or more succinctly as Bishop David L. Thomas teaches, “When You Mess Up, Fess Up, then Get Up!”

Most Creatives, because we ‘feel’ so dynamically often experience difficulty overcoming our oversights. We tend to get stuck in the “shoulda, woulda, coulda’s” which further Delay Our Progress.

Mistakes & Miscalculations are Sure to Appear in the Upcoming Chapters of Our New Year, unless You are one of the New Robots being introduced into it. Unfortunately, a few of your Most Well Engineered Plans & Strategies May Not Perform as well as You’d Hoped, often Depending on Circumstances Outside of Your Control. Perhaps a Personal Misunderstanding Bangs a Huge Dent in an otherwise Vibrant Relationship, which as a result becomes irreparable. As long as You Know Deep Within Your Spirit that You were Not Malicious in Your Initiatives AND You have Taken the Sensitive, Appropriate Steps to try to Rebuild the Breach, albeit to no avail; You Must Move Along, Tears and All.

Remembering to Forget the Misses while Learning From Them is the Tightrope EMs are Destined to Walk. Don’t Get Stuck in the Mire. Make Adjustments. Tweak. Course Correct with Shoulders Back, Head Held High & Most Importantly, a Pure Heart. Once You’ve Sincerely Sought an Acquittal, Forgive Yourself!

A Wonderful Book, “Failing Forward” by esteemed Leadership Author, John Maxwell Goes Much Deeper and Helps the Healing! Enjoy!

I Wish You An Incredibly Prosperous, Blessed and Joyous New Year!

I was Listening to The Crusaders’ “Unsung Heroes” on Vinyl while writing this…

Grab a Copy of My Free E-Book “50 Engaging Ways to Transform Your Fans into Family” at  The EntreMusician.com

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Forget The Critic!!

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Firstly, A Blessed & Joyous Christmas to Each & All!

Last We were Together (I’ve missed a few weeks) we suggested that since Every EntreMusician’s True Motive is to Compose His or Her Song completely from their Heart, Essence & Truth, then they Must  Adopt the Initiative to Forget The Hit!

Hit Songs Come and Go. Standards Transcend Generations. Smokey Robinson’s Great-Great Grandchildren should never be poor!

Today, we set forth a necessary secondary principal that urges you to abandon relying on The Critic to either Define You or Dictate to You What You Should or Must Sound Like to “Make It.”

While Garnering Great Reviews for Your Latest Project has its merits and You’d certainly want to see Favorable Appraisals of Your Work, You Don’t Want to Lean on the Analyst’s Voice or Pen to Guide You! I Learned This the Hard Way – Actually In Reverse – When SounDoctrine’s “INSPIRE” CD accumulated a ton of Wonderful Reviews, but little to no sales…and the total truth is, I had paid for None of Them! Somehow in trying to build upon the foundation we’d created with “ENDURANCE” while expanding our ‘commercial appeal’ I completely lost track of the Goal for the Glory.

I Certainly am NOT Hating on the many gracious Reviewers out there. I once was a Critic for a Jazz eMagazine and was blessed to be able to recommend a number of truly great Indie Artists. I did it out of the love for the music and was always respectful to follow any injurious comments I might’ve had with a note of encouragement. It came to the point where I would not review any material I felt I could not be kind toward, which began to denote bias on my part, so I quit. Many Reviewers share this struggle.

Your Purpose as an Artist Must be Grounded in Understanding that You Most Certainly Will collect Brutal Criticism from those who Don’t Know You, Understand You or are totally Unable to Envision Your Platform and it’s OK. Your Music is NOT for Them!

At the heart of the Christmas Story is a King, born in a filthy manger, who while going about Doing Good was for most of His Life was despised, hated and ultimately murdered by the critics of His day, brought forth through His Resurrection the Greatest Gift the world could ever receive; Eternal Life!

So Go For It!

Get My Free E Book at www.theentremusician.com and Join the Conversation brewing for 2018!

I’ve been in an Azymuth mood again, so while writing & posting this, I’ve been dropping all of their albums on the turntable!

Check Out their cover of Marvin’s “What’s Goin On”

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Forget The Hit!!

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On & Offline there are No Shortage of Classes, Courses & Conferences which Advise, Train and Teach Formulas & Techniques for Crafting “HIT” Songs that ‘Stand Up’ to Industry Standards! Equally, there is a plethora of AI Software available which analyzes Million Sellers from the past 50 years and Recognizes the Keys, Characteristics, Structural Components and Chord Progressions for us to Copy & Duplicate Our Own Smash!

While Writing a Song that Everyone Loves, Admires, Appreciates and Will Buy in Droves is a Worthy Goal of any Songwriter, You can bet that the Core Motivation of a Smokey Robinson or Dianne Warren wasn’t the Immediate Hit (albeit it became the end result). They were seeking something deeper. Their Aim was Timeless & Transformative Compositions. Often, the Songsmith is Expressing his/her Emotion to just One Person, Bearing their Total Soul, only to discover that their Transparency is Universal.

For the EntreMusician who Writes their Own Material, the Primary Intent Must Be Truth.

Conveying Anything Less and Merely Imitating The Flavor of the Day may Cause a Current Splash, but often Short Circuits the Ripple Effect. Our Goal is to Create an Ardent Cult Following,  A Tribe, A Community or Family that Will Pursue Our Music, Learning Every Lyric and Lick regardless of Airplay or Anonymity.

James Taylor, Carly Simon, Kenny Loggins and Joni Mitchell have all written masterpieces that were never released as singles. Any Loyal Funkateer  sings along loudly to the most obscure PFunk Anthem. The Incredible Frankie Beverly has written some of the most enduring R&B Ballads on the planet for the last 40 years and as of this writing has Never Won a single Grammy! Yet His Legend Looms Large and His Melodies are Bone Deep.

Methodically Build Your Audience and Your Discography. Your Career Will Thank You, Even if It Creeps Along Slower than You’d Like. Treat Every Song Like the Masterpiece It Is. The Endurance You Secure will Sustain You Long After the One Hit Wonders have Vanished into Obscurity. Purpose Your Music to Transcend Generations.

This is Not to Say that as a Serious Composer You Shouldn’t Appropriately Work and Shop Your Songs to the Right Connections, Making Certain Each One  Addresses the Appropriate Level of Appeal – But, Never Mistake Hitmaking with Making a Lasting Impact!

Forget The Hit! Change a Life!

Download My Free E-Book: “50 Engaging Ways to Transform Your Fans into Family” at TheEntreMusician.com

I was listening to Con Funk Shun’sLove Shine” on Vinyl while posting this.

A Great Documentary to Check Out This Month is “Muscle Shoals

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30 Proven Psychological Prefixes for Producing Your 1st (or 1001st) Band

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EntreMusician’s Note: These Tips Apply ONLY to Producing Bands Other than You Own (which are fraught with their own set of zany fortuities!) Equally, This Advice May Not Work on Singers who happen to Be Solo Artists. Countless Articles have been written on Producing Up & Coming Divas; None of Which are in Agreement…These have been written to Prepare Yourself Adequately Before the Project Begins!

  1. Pray or Drink Heavily Beforehand (According to Your System of Faith)
  2. Only Talk to The Leader(s) of The Band to Decipher & Determine Goals 
  3. Do a Thorough Inventory of The Band’s Gear
  4. Know Your Own Gear Inside and Out
  5. Prepare a Flowchart of Microphones You’ll Need for the Sessions
  6. Own / Upgrade to The Most Quality Pre Amp You Can Afford
  7. Get a Non-Refundable Deposit
  8. Spend Several Days Listening to The Band’s Demos (If They Exist)
  9. See Them Perform Live
  10. Look For The Real Leader of The Band as You Witness Power Struggles
  11. Spend a Pre-Production Day Getting Great, Natural Drum Sounds
  12. Go Do Likewise with the Bassist
  13. Prepare Comprehensive Track Sheets for the Entire Session
  14. Determine the Emotional / Mental Stability of the Lead Singer and Massage It
  15. Review Your Written Production Agreement. Keep It Handy
  16. Never, Ever Use Cheap Chords
  17. Discover The Weakest Players (They’ll Be Easy To Spot Even Before Picking Up Their Axe) And Loudly Encourage Them in Front of the Others
  18. Rehearse The Band for Three Days to Get Sketch Recordings. Keep Them, You May Need to Use Them Later for Almost Anything…
  19. Help The Guitarist Decide Which Four (4) of the 27 Guitars Brought to the Session will Actually Be Necessary
  20. Create EQ & Compression Presets for Each Instrument & Vocalist
  21. Talk With The Real Band Leader and the Person You Originally Talked To and Make Sure The $$$ is Secure
  22. Learn Several Techniques that Keep Bass Players Calm and Apply Them Accordingly
  23. Vacuum Your Studio Before & After Each Session
  24. Do More Praying (or Drinking), but Not In Front of The Band
  25. Keep Your Harmonizer / Auto Tuner Ready and Active At All Times
  26. Discuss Music Theory Often with The Keyboardist in Front of the Drummer (It Makes Them Hyper Sensitive and they Play Better) 
  27. Make Sure Your Fire Extinguisher(s) Work
  28. Keep Your Hard Drives De-fragged and Uncluttered
  29. Hone Your Mediation Skills between the Real Leader and the Person You Originally Talked To When They Begin to Argue Over Absolutely Everything, Including Who Will Pay You
  30. Make Plenty of Back Ups

I was listening to “Underneath The Colours” by INXS on Vinyl while posting this 

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Always In Writing

One of the Earliest and Most Critical Mistakes Any New EntreMusician tends to Make in this Business is Relying Upon Verbal Agreements.

It’s Easy to Do Because at This Stage You’re Extremely Excited that the Phone Even Rang!

And Before You Know It, Your Enthusiasm Gaining the Advantage, You’ve Locked in The Band, The Date and Invested Precious Time & Resources solely based upon what some Stranger (or Friend) Said she was going to pay you.

There’s already a degree of embarrassment because you nervously negotiated a price and most likely settled for less than Your Original Fee. So with the possibility of losing the entire gig dangling in your imagination, you choose to forego any further timidity and agree to most everything else.

You arrive on time, perform magnificently (of course), only to have the venue owner congratulate you on a wonderful show but with apologies that he didn’t sell enough tickets, drinks or secure the amount of sponsorship he was hoping to receive (which has absolutely nothing to do with you – unless you were not listening) so now he claims he can only pay you…

The very best way to avoid this type of robbery is to Always Place Your Agreement in Writing and Make Certain You place this important piece of conversation atop your discussion.

The All Important Question “And What is Your Budget for this Event?” will provide you all of the necessary information you’ll need before continuing “Please Email Your Agreement to…”

At this Point Either Two Significant Events Will Happen:
1. The Reputable Promoter will make sure they’ve spelled your email address properly and send you the requested document or perhaps ask you to send yours (more on that in a bit)

2. She will begin making several excuses about why she doesn’t use/have one or a Written Agreement, or begin to use those infamous words ‘trust me…’

It’s Vital that You begin to utilize a Written Agreement the moment you’ve formed your act. Even if only charge $50 for the night, get into the habit of using a contract!

If the club owner doesn’t have one, present one. If you don’t have one, create one or download one from http://www.theentremusician.com, and don’t forget the include asking for a 50% deposit!

Serious Venue Owners take you far more seriously when You Talk Terms of Agreement and are prepared to document them even if they are not prepared to present one. The offer itself adds major validation to your professionalism.

And Remember, That’s Exactly Who You Are!

Next Time, We Talk About Getting Paid BEFORE Your Performance!

Although I wasn’t listening to any music while composing this post, I going to be listening to Stevie All Month!

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The Twin Towers of Truth & Trust

Unfortunately, our Country and the World has recently had to endure the commemoration of the 15th Acknowledgement of the Atrocities which occurred on September 11th. Our Hearts continue to go out to the many families who’ve had to be reminded yet again – and embrace the pain of their magnificent losses.

Perhaps like You, Lori & I watched a significant number of documentaries that retold stories of Bravery, Heroism & Self Sacrifice in various moments of crisis. Interwoven within these tales were also a growing analysis of Skepticism, Controversy & Conspiracy which explain that we do not have All the Facts, nor have we indeed been told the Entire Truth concerning this Incredible Tragedy.

Amidst the Irony of these Painful Ceremonies is the blatant, crude and destructive political campaign season we find ourselves in, where it seems that the Twin Towers of Truth & Trust have likewise been destroyed, long before a plane – or a missile – crashed into the World Trade Center.

If We are forced to Choose, for the Highest Office in our Nation, between the One Who Lies the Least, it’s no wonder why America suffers from a Deficit of Reliability Worldwide- If & When Our Government Leaders, Present & Future are Unwilling to Stand On and Speak The Truth, then it’s clear why it may take decades, or longer, to rebuild the Tower of Trust.

Furthermore, if we as individuals find it difficult to Speak Truthfully, In Love, to our neighbors, next door, at work, in church, at the mall and/or online, we emaciate the right to accuse any leader of decimating the public trust.

Truth & Trust are Towers We Must Build Together.

 

I was listening to no music while writing this blog.

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