If you’re new to making music or are just plain aloof, it might seem like the world of live music is a free-for-all where bands and their fans can do whatever they want, but that attitude is a classic hallmark of being “that guy” when it comes to shows. Music scenes are sort of like elephants in the way that they seem to remember even the smallest details about musicians and how they conduct themselves publicly, so what you do at shows is actually really important whether you’re performing or not. Here’s a few of the more prominent “that guy” traits that every musician should avoid:
Ah, the dreaded bad review. Even the most talented and successful songwriters often question themselves after reading a negative write-up about their music, but negative reviews are especially potent when they’re aimed at new and up-and-coming bands. No matter who you are and what kind of music you make, bad reviews and harsh opinions about what you’re doing are an inevitability, and crafting your music a specific way to please critics will only make your music worse. So, what do you do when a bad review comes along?
Every January 1st, millions of people make new year’s resolutions that are meant to lead them to greater things. We promise ourselves we’ll get in shape, eat healthier, get that promotion, move to that new city, or start that new business—whatever it is that’s been brewing in the back of our mind for just a little too long. We’re fired up, we’re excited, and we’re ready to take action.
Unfortunately, so often we let the chaos of every day life get in the way of moving forward on those goals. These things we really want take a backseat to the things we need to do. But it doesn’t have to be that way. When it comes to your music career, pursuing your talent, your dream, your musical destiny is possible to manage amidst a busy life. Put these 3 tips into action, and you’ll soon find your career blossoming.
In a perfect world, the musicians we choose to work with will be thoughtful, helpful, and encouraging when it comes to the music we’re making. But like any relationship, the interpersonal connections between musicians in bands and other musical projects can often be as complex and dramatic as music itself. Sometimes the answer is to dig in, find common ground, and to do the hard work of maintaining these relationships to keep them healthy. But when relationships between musicians become damaged past the point of salvageability, there needs to be a major change.
Whether songwriters like it or not, critics and tastemakers representing blogs and media outlets are a major part of how music is vetted, marketed and sold, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. With how important music criticism is to the success and longevity of a release, it can be tempting for writers to try and make their music sound like something they think will please critics, but they shouldn’t. Here are three reasons why:
Like the bands that frequent them, new music venues are born and every day it seems. Great venues are able to deliver a sense of magic and meaning to musicians and the fans that watch them alike, but setting yourself apart as a music venue is almost as tough as creating meaningful music. Here’s a list of five great new American venues doing just that:
Each year we’re presented a clean slate. The opportunity to take what we’ve learned the year before and apply it to the one that lies in front of us. No matter how successful your 2017 was, or the roadblocks you may have hit along the way, 2018 presents the perfect opportunity to dust yourself off and make it the most prosperous, successful year yet. Here are three ways to make 2018 your most successful year yet.
In this industry it can be easy to get overwhelmed with all the information being blasted at us 24/7. Do this, don’t do that. This works, that doesn’t. It can be tough to know which advice to follow, and which to stay far away from.
As someone who has been in the industry for the last 10 years as a writer for my own and several other publications, a music publicist, an occasional booker of local shows, and an all around observer, there are a few myths that I see bands still living by, despite any proof they actually work—most of them end up actually being detrimental. Here they are: