Why A False Victim Is A Controlling, Evil Person That Will Crush Your Dreams

False Victim Skeleton Cage Feature MEME

You have important choices early on in your career and in your life. You can choose to be responsible for the decisions you make (or don’t make) or you can choose to be the person who’s constantly blaming outside forces for their outcome. This is called a false victim.

False Victim Venting

 

I’m going to tell you a story about a false victim and, admittedly, I’m venting a bit. Follow me here because if you know me I’ll always bring it back around to YOU, the artist.

 

 

 

You may or may not know that I have a love affair with Great Danes. Scooter McGhee is my 3rd Dane. I rescued victim Scooter and Carihim from a Los Angeles pound. When I got Scooter he was full grown, the vet guesstimated about 2 ½ years old. He was emaciated at 106 lbs. (he was starved by his former owner) when his healthy weight is a rock solid 145 pounds.

 

Danes are easy and Scooter McGhee is no exception. He’s so “chill-to-the-next-episode,” man. Very mellow except for when he feels there’s injustice in the world (like when Cari and I fight or any random game of “chase-the-fastest-dog” at any given Dog Park) where he gets upset and tries to remedy the situation. No Joke.

 

Scooter is obedient. Often, during the summer he and Cari’s little dog, Zoe, will be chilling outside on the back Victim Scooter McGhee Chair Chillpatio soaking up the sun or hanging with us while we grill (I always have a marrow bone to throw on the grill so they can participate with us…don’t judge).

 

In past articles I’ve written about all the construction going on in our neighborhood. One of those brand new homes was built in a formerly empty lot right next door to Cari and me.

 

We were excited about the new neighbors because the husband was the father of one of Cari’s childhood friends. Cari has known this guy since she was 6 years old. She has always liked him, describing him as somewhat of a hippie, which is perfect for me.

 

Move in day arrived and Cari and I were out walking 3 miles as we try to do as often as possible. We came upon Victim Scooter Floorthe new neighbor and is wife and we stopped to say hello. We got to meet his new wife (not really “new” as he’s been married to this one for quite some time, but different than who he was married to when Cari was little, so new to her.) and had a nice little chat, welcoming them to the neighborhood.

 

4 days after they move in I get a visit from the country Sheriff.

 

 

I answer the door and the Sheriff asks, “Do y’all have a Great Dane here?” Of course, Scooter McGhee is at the door with me, so….False Victim Policewoman

 

I said, “Well yeah, here he is, meet Scooter McGhee.” Then Scooter proceed to push the door out of the way and stick his head in the Sheriff’s crotch which he always does in an attempt to get a good ear scratching (one of his favorite pleasures in life…literally toe curling for him), he doesn’t discriminate.

 

The Sheriff laughed after I explained what he was up to and told me she knew they were gentle giants, however, one of our neighbors had visited the Sheriff’s department and told them that Scooter McGhee was jumping up on people, knocking people over, and there was a leash law, so he couldn’t be outside without a leash. She knew that Scooter really wasn’t aggressive but explained she had to respond to the complaint.

 

I now have to walk Scooter and Zoe every time they go outside to obey the law. So much freakin’ easier to let them outside in the morning to pee without a leash, but I digress, the law is the law.

 

False Victim Scales Of Justice

We were in the wrong.

 

Cari and I were a little embarrassed about the Sheriff’s visit. Also a little hostile. Who would’ve done this? Scooter doesn’t wander away from the house at all, so we figured it was the neighbor on the other side of us who is nice enough but terrified of Scooter. Mostly because he’s big and black.

 

It’s a black thing, I guess.

 

I erroneously thought (keep in mind my type A personality, now) that as long as Scooter McGhee wasn’t bugging anyone and he was on our property that all would be good. I mean who would be offended by a dog minding its own business in its own yard, right?

 

I thought wrong. The law is the law.

 

False Victim Screaming 2

 

Fast forward to a few days after my visit from the Sheriff and Cari’s oldest daughter Maggie (she’s 12) comes into the house and says the new neighbor lady was screaming at her, “CONTROL YOUR DOG!!!” “YOU HAVE TO CONTROL YOUR DOG ON A LEASH!!!” Maggie also reported to us that there was a younger lady with little kids (elementary school age) screaming as well. She was shouting at her kids telling them to get inside as if Scooter was a 900 lb. Bengal Tiger on the loose.

 

False Victim Tiger

Keep in mind there hasn’t been any kind of an incident here. Scooter has never attacked anyone and didn’t attack our neighbor. Scooter wasn’t in their yard, he was in ours.

 

 

 

 

Scooter was outside without a leash. Both of Cari’s girls had friends over and they were all playing outside. False Victim Attacking DogsScooter was meandering around our yard hanging with the girls when Maggie was getting skewered by the neighbor. So he wasn’t doing anything that could be misconstrued as aggressive other than being outside without a leash.

 

Which is against the law.

 

False Victim the Law

Now, after the neighbor lady and her daughter chastised the 12 year old, we have to walk over and get to the bottom of this. Cari is dumbfounded that our new neighbor, whom she’s known for 33 years didn’t bother to talk to us about whatever problem they were having. They went guns hot and called the Sheriff.

 

Again, no incidents have occurred, OK?

 

We walk over to speak with the lady who answers the door. I think Cari started off the conversation by apologizing that we hadn’t had Scooter on a leash, which is against the law, and then inquired as to what exactlyFalse Victim Panic Jumper happened that would require her to feel she needed to scream at Maggie. Cari added, “It’s clear that you were the one who called the Sheriff now.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

The neighbor lady then admitted she had her husband go down to the Sheriff to handle this situation. She proceeded to tell us something like, “I’m sorry, I have panic attacks after my brain surgery (TMI) and I’m terrified of dogs because my husband was attacked by one awhile back.” (He’s nowhere to be found by the way, possibly avoiding any confrontation, letting his wife clean up the mess she’s created, or both). She proceeded to inform us, “There is a leash law you know, and I’m sure your False Victim Don't Panic 2dog is a good dog but animals are animals and they’re unpredictable. You never know what’s going to happen. We have grandchildren and we’re concerned about their safety.”

 

You can’t imagine what’s going through my head right now.

 

She goes on to say, “I’m mostly afraid that our dog (WTF!?!?), who is aggressive because he isn’t fixed, will start a fight with your dog and your dog will win.”False Victim Finger

 

You know that look that a dog gives you when you ask it a question, the one with the tilted head? That’s me now.

 

 

I will honestly tell you that we didn’t go over there to argue the leash law. We were humble, apologetic, empathetic, and False Victim Tilted Dog Headinquisitive to their situation. The law is the law and she has every right to feel safe in her new home. We were just wondering why, when there were 1,000 ways to handle this situation, they went straight for the jugular and called the Sheriff. Especially since there was no incident to speak of.

 

She apologized for calling the cops and told us she was afraid to come over because Scooter might bark and come to the door (which might set off a panic attack). Feeling guilty for behaving like a douchebag and in desperate need of a spontaneous justification (for her own sake), she went on to inform us that she had talked to “every one of the neighbors” as she moved her pointer finger up and down both sides of the street in the entire neighborhood. She said they “all” told her that Scooter was bad and they had problems with him. (None of the neighbors have ever met Scooter).

 

I looked at her directly in utter disbelief. Not dumbfounded disbelief, I just didn’t believe someone who was THIS deeply mortified of dogs, who believes all animals are unpredictable, who just informed us she was afraid to come to our door because our dog might bark and set off a panic attack, had in 4 days-time managed to move in, temporarily overcome her deepest fears in an attempt to discuss Scooter McGhee a dog she hasn’t met, with a dozen or so neighbors she hasn’t met, who also mostly own dogs she has never met. The math just isn’t adding up.False Victim Peeing in my Cheerios

 

At this time, I am fully aware she is pissing in my Cheerios and she’s trying to convince me (and herself) that it’s milk.

 

There was a long, pregnant uncomfortable silence, which looked like Cari and I with our jaws open wide, blinking our eyes like Ren & Stimpy, that was broken by her refining her story admitting now that she just talked to 2 neighbors. Both of whom have dogs that could be unpredictable and both of whom she’d never met before.

 

So she was lying and/or exaggerating in an attempt to justify her crappy behavior.

 

False Victim Panic Peeper

I then informed her that she actually used good judgement here because just like her dog, that’s EXACTLY what Scooter does whenever anyone comes to the door. He barks; so crisis and possible panic attack avoided.

 

They could’ve left a note in our mailbox. They could’ve called his daughter to get Cari’s phone number and texted or called to inform us of her mental issue, they could’ve informed us on our talk when we welcomed them to the neighborhood.  They could’ve sent a letter, sent up smoke signals, had his daughter (Cari’s childhood friend) call us and explain, etc.

 

At this moment, our new neighbor’s daughter (her daughter, not Cari’s friend) comes to the door with a snotty, mean, and VERY aggressive attitude. She introduces herself with her little head tilted sideways and says, “LOOK THERE IS A LEASH LAW AND THAT’S ALL THERE IS TO IT! SO JUST PUT YOUR DOG ON A LEASH”

False Victim Screaming

 

Her mother, now clearly embarrassed tells her daughter that everything is fine and we weren’t there to attack her mom in anyway.

 

 

Cari almost lost it. They didn’t have the maturity to reach out to us and inform us of her admitted “mental instability” (her words), but they certainly had the balls to scream at a 12 year-old. I’d call that move cowardly.

 

Keep in mind had my big black Great Dane actually knocked anyone over, jumped up on anyone, attacked anyone, or been off its own property in any way I would understand the heavy response completely.

False Victim Screaming 3

Scooter never left our yard in both of these occasions. He was, however, without a leash.

 

Here’s the takeaway.

 

Our new neighbor is a false victim.

 

She’s right about the leash law, but that aside, if she was really THAT terrified of animals being spontaneously aggressive, how can she own one? Especially one she admits is aggressive because they’ve chosen not to fix him. She’s full of crap.

 

There are 3 kinds of victims.

False Victim Leash

 

A real victim is defined as someone who has absolutely no control over their situation. The Syrian people, for instance, are completely screwed at this moment in history. If they leave they’re dead by their own government. These are REAL victims. Forced beyond their control to endure a life of oppression put forth by their government, or die.

 

That said, I once did a mortgage for a guy from Eastern Europe (I forget the country, sorry) who was in the same situation and escaped his country in a shipping crate where he was a stowaway for a month with a sleeve of crackers and 1 bottled water to survive. For a month! He risked his life to leave his oppression. He was discovered at sea but luckily they didn’t kill him (which is the common remedy in a stowaway situation). Now he has a better life in Los Angeles. He wanted change and got it. The possible consequences were worth the effort to leave, but again, I digress.

 

False Victim Panic Eyes

 

The 2nd kind of victim are people who were victimized. Anyone who has incurred some kind of unwanted horrible mental or physical attack is a victim. Rape victims, sexual abuse victims, domestic violence victims, car accident victims, robbery victims, random accident victims, Cancer victims, etc.

 

 

These people were victimized, it’s horrible to think about. They definitely become damaged, broken, often times somewhat dysfunctional in their life if they choose to give up.

 

It completely sucks for a human being to be upended by such a tragedy for obvious reasons, but now, if they want to heal, if they want to recover mentally, they have a lot of work to do. A lot of work that they didn’t have to do yesterday.

False Victim Snake Mouse

 

Get it?

 

EXTREME INCONVENIENCE.

 

If and how they get back on their horse will determine the quality of their life moving forward. The power to recover and deal with the new demons that were horribly bestowed upon them is in their control; albeit unfair that they have to deal with them at all.

 

False Victim Devil Face

The 3rd kind of victim is a false victim. That’s our neighbor.

 

That’s also a lot of artists which is why I’m writing this.

 

Now don’t spin out here. I’m not saying she’s a horrible person for hating my dog. She has every right and I fully understand that.

 

But I don’t believe she was trying to protect herself from the dog at all; this was not her agenda.

 

False Victim Blindfolded Panda bear

 

If I suffered from severe panic attacks brought on by unfamiliar dogs and my agenda was to prevent said panic attacks, I might’ve checked the neighborhood to see if there were any scary dogs before I moved in, maybe made may choice of homes that way. I could’ve built a fence around my new property to guarantee that no random animals of any kind would get near me and trigger a bad day.

 

 

She is a false victim.

 

This is her control racket.

 

False Victim Marionette

Photo Credit: Darek Morys https://stock.tookapic.com/photos/8856

 

 

She uses these panic attacks to control those around her including people like Cari and I whom she doesn’t know. This is easier for her than actually communicating like a functional human being.

 

 

 

She clearly wanted Cari and me to excuse her overly aggressive misconduct because she deemed herself a victim with a mental instability. We’re supposed to be compassionate in response to her harsh antagonism because she told us she has a mental issues. She gets to do what she wants because she has panic attacks.

 

It’s very clear from our one conversation that she has her family playing into her drama.

 

False Victim Marionette 2

 

In spite of his prior relationship with my girlfriend the husband went to the Sheriff’s office to report Scooter being off the leash (and lied about aggressive behavior to make it more dramatic even though the off-leash issue was all that was needed to get the response they wanted, FYI).

 

The daughter with her hostile protective tone (You would’ve thought the mother had actually been attacked by my dog) telling us the law is the law. She was in “protect my poor mama” mode.

 

Which is exactly the way mama likes it.

 

Most artists behave like a false victim when it comes to becoming a student of the game in this crazy music business.

False Victim Political Cartoon Photo Rod Waddington

Photo Credit: Rod Waddington

 

It happens with indie artists as well as it happens with major label artists.

 

The result is always the same, the artist gets screwed; with the artist’s permission.

 

Yes, that’s right, if you choose not to learn,  if you choose not to “trust but verify”, then you are allowing yourself to get screwed over. You’re choosing to be a false victim because you can control this dynamic if you want.

 

The artists who truly stand the test of time understand the game from all sides. They’re incredible creatively and they are experts at the business and marketing end as well.

 

False Victim Platinum Record

I know a former major label artist (8 million records sold) who is an amazing creative talent. This artist hates the business end and doesn’t participate in that space whatsoever. Never has.

 

This artist seems happy to me but the quality of life is far less than what it could be if they’d get to know the business. This artist has throngs of stories about being screwed in the Industry (like never making a dime off of 8 million units because the label never “recouped”). This artist (whom I adore by the way) will make a living singing until their last day, I promise you, but has maneuvered into yet another slave like business situation (post major label days) with a management company that really doesn’t know what they’re doing (not music business people). This artist gets a regular salary the management does and makes what they want off the artist’s talent and million dollar brand name.

 

Conversely, I know another post-major-label-artist who excels and enjoys the business just as much as being a False Victim Slave Marketcreative. It’s probably no surprise that this artist sold 13 million units for the major label. Post major label deal, this artist has formed their own record label and is definitely in charge of their own destiny as a result of learning the business side.

 

Y’all think life will be great once you get your deal.

 

You’re wrong.

 

It’s a cop out mentality that allows you to avoid extra, unwanted, inconvenient work.

 

This mentality is always followed by horrible stories of deception and oppression from outside forces that stand in the way of real happiness and success.

 

False Victim Blindfolded Man Feature

 

As if a blindfolded person accused another person of deception because they moved something and the person who chooses to be blindfolded didn’t see it.

 

 

If you don’t want to open your eyes, you’ll always feel deceived. Even from people who aren’t trying to betray you.

 

You have to watch every penny because even though the label is fronting the money, it’s YOUR MONEY.

 

False Victim Barbara Strauss

Here’s a great example. When I was an artist we were managed by Barbara Strauss. Barbara is a straight up genius with bigger balls than any man I know. Barbara also managed Schascle Yochim (pronounced Cha-sell Yo-kum), AKA “Twinkle” as she’s known in Sarasota, FL.

 

 

 

Back in the early 90’s Twinkle got the biggest record deal ever given to an unsigned, unknown artist from Warner Bros. Her voice is like listening to an angel sing, man. In my opinion she blows away Whitney, Mariah, you name it.False Victim Haunted by Real Life

 

 

 

 

 

She’s so good she received a personal phone call from Quincy Jones who invited her to the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland. (This is a big freakin’ deal). The travel department of the label booked them 2 first class tickets to Switzerland at a cost of $3,000 for each ticket. Barbara thought enough to call her local small town travel agent in Sarasota, FL to compare prices. Local travel agent said 2 first class tickets to Switzerland would run them $1,500 each. Wow. Big difference.

 

False Victim Ticket ComparisonSee my point?

 

If you’re not watching every aspect of your business, whether you’re independent or on a major label, you’ll never recoup.

 

If you want to be an important artist, then people will have to be exposed to your art in order to be moved by it.

 

This means you better understand marketing.

 

Which means you’re going to have to do more work.

 

False Victim More Work

 

Otherwise you could be a false victim and say you don’t or you can’t and that’s the reason you’re not making a living doing what you love. It’s not your fault, right? If someone else (or lack of someone else) is to blame for your absence of momentum, the pressure is off you.

 

 

How in the hell did Bon Jovi stay relevant beyond the demise of the hair band genre?

 

Because besides being a prolific songwriter and artist, Jon is a badass business man as well. Make no mistake about it.

 

False Victim Jon Bon JoviThink what you want about the art and the artist, but he learned how create great music, and he learned how to sell it to an audience.

 

He chooses to survive.

 

You might argue that there were better artists from that era and you might be right.

 

If you are right, the difference lies in Jon’s business acumen.

 

It’s your job as an artist NOT to be false victim. In fact, I can honestly say that if you continue to be a false victim, you’ll never make a living as an artist. Your future will be one of quiet desperation, bitterness, excuses, and coping with the deep sadness that accompanies a life lived absent the rewards it should receive from the gift God gave you.

 

False Victim Broke Rock Star

 

Maybe you were abused, in an accident, tortured, mentally beat up, physically beat up, or attacked by Bernie thugs at a Trump rally. Whatever the case, you now have more work to do today than you did before you were attacked if you’re to survive and get back to the quality of life you had prior to the attack.

 

You have to deal with it, move on, and live your life because if you don’t…you still have to live your life.

 

So if you’re just coming to the realization that you’re going to have to do more than just be a great artist to make a living at it, then you’re kind of in the same situation, aren’t you?

 

You’re in the same situation as the victims because you just discovered that you now have more work to do today (if you want to make a living as an artist) than you did before the realization.

 

False Victim Blindfold 2Or you can choose to be a false victim ignore the work and blame the world for your inability to make a living doing what you were born to do.

 

Don’t be like my douchebag neighbor living a sad, somewhat pathetic life where the script reads, “Here’s why I get to misbehave and be an asshole and its OK because…”

 

It’s not OK.

 

Whether you have a good excuse for not making a living as an artist or you don’t, the outcome is still the same.

 

You’re not making a living as an artist.

 

The world needs good music. It always has.

 

It sickens and saddens me to watch it dry up because artists don’t want to do the extra work.

False Victim Blindfolded Girl2

 

 

Now there is more work than before, but now you don’t need to wait for anyone to get your music out there.

 

You have to budget for and learn how to market effectively. This is the only way to get your music out there man.

 

Artists who don’t want to excel creatively, work creatively, learn marketing, and excel at marketing are false victims.

 

It’s a lie.

 

A lie perpetuated by the stories you tell yourself about the way you think the music industry used to be.

 

Stop it.

 

Your music is important.

False Victim Scooter NO

 

But it’s only important if someone gets to hear it.

 

Don’t be a false victim. Scooter says, “This is NO”.

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

 

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How To Find Your Perfect Music Manager

Music Manager Feature 2

The answer to “how to find a music manager” or “how to find a producer” is easy.Music Manager We are Here

 

I’m going to answer it, but first we need to dig a little into what makes you tick, ok?

For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.” — Steve Jobs

 

Music Manager Steve Jobs Photo credit Kremlin DOT ru

Photo Credit: Kremlin.ru

 

I want you to ask yourself this question for the next 7 days. If you answer “No” for too many days, then you need to CHANGE something immediately.

 

Follow me here.

 

 

 

 

 

Remember my article talking about the quote (inaccurately attributed to Darwin) that stated, “It is not the strongest of a species that survives, it is not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”Music Manager Darwin Strongest Quote

 

If you’re stuck you have to change something.

 

If you’re broke you have to change something.

 

If you’re broken…you have to change something.

 

Music Manager Broken

 

Too many of you right now are defaulting to the damage causing software loop in your heads, “I’ve gotta do this before I do that.”

“I need more money, then I can do this.”

“I just have to perfect this thing before I can be serious about that thing.”

“I just need a music manager or a good music producer to be successful in my career.”

“If I could just meet that one huge record label executive, she would hear my music and love it! Once I get my deal I’m going to get paid.”

 

 

Music Manager Waiting

 

 

All these statements translate into this: “Here’s my excuse why I can’t do it or why I’m waiting to do it.”

 

 

 

Here’s a quote that actually is from Darwin.

We stopped looking for monsters under our bed when we realized they were inside of us.” – Charles Darwin

 

Ooooh, read that one again and let it sink in.

We stopped looking for monsters under our bed when we realized they were inside of us.” – Charles Darwin

 

Music Manager Joker Meme We stopped

 

That’s right. You’re the monster!

 

All these obstacles are in your head, man.

 

 

The catch 22 is this: You think your career will launch with good industry pros and industry pros want to see a career that’s already launched.

 

Once you truly realize that and change your outlook from “here’s what I need to get ahead” to “How can I help you get ahead?” your world will change.

 

Here’s another real strong Darwin quote.

 

“It is always advisable that we perceive clearly our ignorance.” – Charles Darwin

 

You have to know that you don’t know. You have to admit that you don’t know, develop a thirst for the truth, and then focus on a plan to do something about it.Music Manager Questions

 

You’re not asking enough questions, man, and you’re probably asking the wrong questions.

 

When you find yourself in the right “lane”, and you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing, for real, it’s literally breathtaking how quickly the tables turn. The amount of supremely positive energy you attract into your life will be overwhelming.

Music Manager Energy your way

 

You will always question it because it’s so ABUNDANT.

 

You’ll always be thinking, do I deserve this? Is this for real? And the answer is a resounding YES!

 

 

Hey.

 

It won’t happen until you make a change though.

 

It won’t happen until you jump.

 

Those monsters inside your head got you scared to jump.

 

  • They’re telling you you’re not ready.Music Manager monsters
  • They’re telling you your parents were right and music was a stupid career choice.
  • They’re telling you to focus on Plan B…to be safe.
  • They’re telling you to deal with this pain tomorrow so have another drink today.
  • They’re telling you good things will happen to those who wait.

 

Your monsters are correct in that good things do come to those who wait, but only that which is left behind by those who hustle.

Music Manager Those who wait

 

 

 

 

So if table scraps is your idea of paradise, keep listening to the monsters.

 

 

 

How do you find a manager?

How do you find a killer booking agent?

How do you get a big time producer?

 

The first part of the answer is you’re going to have to pay.

 

Music Manager Dodge Dart

This is NOT a Ferrari.

 

If the cost is too high, then you don’t want it enough. Which is ok. I’m not judging. Just accept the reality and don’t cry over the outcome.

 

Crying over an outcome you haven’t worked to achieve would be as silly as paying a few hundred bucks for a rusted out 1967 baby blue Dodge Dart and bitching that it doesn’t look, sound, feel, and perform like a Ferrari. You didn’t pay for a Ferrari!

 

 

You’re going to have to pay with your time, which many of you are not willing to give, at least not enough.

 

When I was an artist, my band practiced 4-7 hours a day. No joke. We all had part-time jobs and every other minute outside of that stupid phone sales room was devoted to band rehearsal by all members.

 

Music Manager TIME

 

If you’re thinking, my band will never commit to that, get a new band. I went through tons of band members in lil’ old Delavan, Wisconsin before I assembled the lineup that would gain the serious traction.

 

 

 

If they don’t want it enough, find somebody who does.

 

Maybe they do want it enough and they just need to be checked into the glass. Help them reevaluate their priorities.

 

If you’re thinking but these band members are my friends and I don’t want to hurt their feelings, get over it. They’ll be OK. You clearly want it more than they do.

 

Music Manager Beehive

Truth is, each of you will be happier surrounded by people with the same goals. Life is good when you’re in the right beehive.

 

This is show-business, not show-friends.

 

If you’re thinking I don’t have time for that, then you’re right. Which is fine. But you have to stop stressing over a lack of momentum. Music is not a profession for somebody with little or no time to devote to it; it’s a hobby. You enjoy making music, so enjoy it. But let’s call a spade a spade and set clear realistic expectations.

 

Music Manager Hobby

 

 

Btw, every awesome job comes with crappy paperwork that nobody likes to do but has to be done. I hate accounting but I have to do it for Daredevil.

 

 

 

Your crappy paperwork is probably manifesting itself in the form of music marketing. Decidedly different animal than making music but mission critical if you plan on being a professional.

 

You also have to pay with money.

 

You’ll have to either pay someone to help you create solid recordings, good images, PR, social media, videos, promotion, etc. OR you’ll have to pay someone to teach you how to do it for yourself.Music Manager Paperwork

 

You’re not going to magically absorb this knowledge from the Universe simply because you wish it to be that way and you were born to be an artist.

 

 

You’re going to have to get off your ass and get in proximity with a mentor of some kind. The least expensive method to benefiting from a mentor is a webinar, a consultation, or a book!

 

 

If you’re thinking I don’t have money for that right now, I got bills, you’re right again! You’re spending your money on the things that matter to you the most. If your career isn’t one of these things, then you have no money for it. Therefore music is a hobby right now, not a profession.

Music Manager poor

 

 

I’m constantly listening to podcasts, reading books, watching webinars to learn about music marketing online.

 

 

 

What am I studying?

 

Social Media marketing, online marketing, consumer psychology, purchasing psychology, story branding, sales copy, Latent Semantic Indexing (I know I’m a total geek), music industry trade mags, ecommerce technology, and more.

 

Books are the most AMAZING deals, man. Direct proximity with the best minds the world has to offer for around $15; the cost of an expensive cocktail.

Music Manager Books

 

 

Why do I spend money and time on these books?

 

 

 

Because nothing is more important to me than cracking the code to helping my artists find their audience, connect with them, and create cash flow from them.

 

 

Once I’ve mastered this, I’ll be able to mathematically predict cash flow. If you’ve ever seen the movie “Moneyball”, that’s the ticket. Daredevil Production is architecting “Moneyball” for the music business.

Music Manager Moneyball

 

If you’re pissed right now, I’m not trying to trick you.

 

The question: How do I find a music manager?

 

The answer: You don’t find them, they’ll find YOU.

 

 

 

 

Music Manager Alone

 

You don’t sit around wondering, wishing, hoping, that you’ll meet the right person who will agree to go to work your day job for you so you can collect the paycheck and focus on music, do you?

 

No.

 

That’s a job you have to do on your own.

 

You don’t sit around day dreaming about the day you find the right person to wipe your butt after your done taking a crap either, do you?

 

No.

 

This is yet another job that you deeply understand is for you alone.

 

You think these questions were silly because they were.

 

You KNOW that you don’t get paid unless you get your butt to work.

Music Manager Hide

 

You KNOW your butt won’t get wiped unless you do it yourself.

 

Whether you want to believe or not, whether you understand it or not,

 

 

The music business is no different.

 

You won’t find an audience and make great music unless you do it yourself. All the people you seek will make your existing audience (business) bigger. They won’t find them for you.

music manager sheep

 

Put in the time. Put in as much money as you can (intelligently) and become an undeniable force of business.

 

All the managers, booking agents, and producers will come out of the woodwork once you prove to the Universe that you’ve taken ownership of your own career.

 

They’ll flock to you, I PROMISE.

 

Until then, you’re just another wannabe who naively believes that you need them to make you.

 

They won’t.

You don’t.

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

If you like the content in this article please SHARE it and COMMENT. Thank you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Case Studies: How To Find Your Sound

How do you find your sound?

Find Your Sound Feature 1

It’s different for every artist, at least it should be. There has to be attention paid to what the artist is doing creatively so that the sound is what the artist is really, genuinely trying to do or you end up with a dancing chicken. That’s no fun.

 

There also has to be some thought put into the marketplace. This may sound non artistic but I beg to disagree. With some projects, subtle, intelligent changes can be made to cut through the clutter or expand the audience without stifling the art.

 

A bunch of you reading this article believe that to find your sound is whatever you happen to write about which makes it “organic”, more natural, etc.

 

That is true to a degree, however there has to be intentional curation, there has to be serious thought put into what this project is going to sound like, representation, the message, the image, the artistic “lane’. If there isn’t it comes out sounding haphazard and somewhat schizophrenic.

 

Find Your Sound Adele 21

 

 

Thematically, Adele’s 21 was all about her breakup. If she threw in a killer hit song about anything else, it wouldn’t have fit. That’s what I mean by schizophrenic.

 

 

 

 

Just because it’s a hit song doesn’t mean it’s a hit song for you. Here’s a great example.

 

One of my favorite songs last year was Kenny Chesney’s “American Kids”. GREAT song! (OK it really speaks to me and my upbringing in a faded little map dot called Delavan, Wisconsin. Love that map dot)Find Your Sound Kenny Chesney American Kids

 

This was a HUGE hit for Kenny. What you may not know is that “American Kids” was pitched to Lady Antebellum first and they passed on it; appropriately so.

 

What?

 

Find Your Sound Lady A

 

 

Yes, that song is killer, but it wasn’t for them. It didn’t fit their brand so it wouldn’t work right.

 

 

Here’s my point.

 

Finding your sound starts at “30,000 feet” where you begin to craft your artistic lane with the broad strokes first. You have to put some DEEP thought into this because it will become the blueprint that will give guidance to whichFind Your Sound BluePrint songs to pick if they’re outside cuts, which of your songs you should, record and which of your songs you should either let someone else record OR save for a future project.

 

How much thought?

 

 

Marrying a project that is genuinely consonant with the artist from the inside out with an artistic lane that is ideally empty or hopefully not very crowded is an art form.

 

Case Study #1: Bailey James

Find Your Sound Bailey James

 

When I first heard Bailey I was blown away by her voice. She was simply an astonishing little 11-year old girl with an incredibly mature voice. Her instrument is somewhat reminiscent of the great Patsy Cline in tone and her melodic sensibilities.

 

Right away, that’s exciting because I don’t really hear anyone in the country music marketplace that sounds like her; this makes her voice more “identifiable”.

 

What wouldn’t be distinguishable is if she sounded like or was trying to sound exactly like Carrie Underwood, or Miranda Lambert which is usually the case here with most wannabes in Nashville.

Find Your Sound Carrie and Miranda

 

So that’s a step in the right direction.

 

 

Next what is really unusual, is that (now) 13-year old Bailey James genuinely likes old school country like Patsy Cline, Tammy Wynette, Johnny Cash, etc.

 

 

 

I think that when your Bailey’s age you HAVE to love 5 Seconds of Summer and Taylor Swift (check!) but other than these two artists she drives her parents crazy listening to, well, “Crazy”.

Find Your Sound Patsy Cline

 

 

Here is unique value proposition #2. If we made a record that was reminiscent of old school country Patsy Cline the project would be in harmony with Bailey’s artistic soul.

 

I would be real. Which is to say it wouldn’t be contrived.

 

Get it?

 

This information began to get my creative juices flowing.

 

What if we made a record that was retro (ish) sounding? At the time there was nothing like this on the radio, (although very recently Maren Morris seems to be doing REALLY well with her very retro sound, salute! This helps my cause).

Find Your Sound What if

 

What if we made the melodies evocative of Patsy Cline which you don’t hear on country radio right now?

 

What if we supported these melodies with old school country chords and chord progressions which you don’t hear on the radio right now?

 

Find Your Sound Country Guitar Chords

 

What if we added a neat artistically harmonious twist? Let’s make the lyrics more like Taylor Swift’s early records.

 

 

There were many reasons for Taylor Swift’s success and one of the big ones is that she and Scott Borchetta created Find Your Sound Taylor Swift Fearlessan artistic lane that was previously non-existent.

 

There were exactly ZERO artists lyrically catering to 9-14 year olds.

 

All country music artists were adult themed lyrically.

 

Here’s the twist. Taylor grew up.

 

Taylor went from:

She wears short skirts

 I wear T-shirts

She’s cheer captain

       And I’m in the bleachers”

To writing

I’ve got a long list of ex-lovers,

        They’ll tell you I’m insane

        But I’ve got a blank space baby,

        And I’ll write your name.”

 

Find Your Sound Authenti City

 

 

So who’s speaking for the 9-14 year olds in country music now?

 

 

Keep in mind we haven’t written any songs yet for Bailey’s project.

 

This very thought process led to some serious conversations that I had with Bailey and her parents.

 

Find Your Sound Couple Music CollageIf we make a record like this, we’re going to have to commit to using the internet and touring to build a following as we probably wouldn’t be getting a lot of love from country radio, at least at first. If we wanted love from country radio we’d have to make a record like Kelsea Ballerini, which is fine, but why be derivative just to chase radio?

 

Country radio wouldn’t probably help us because she doesn’t sound like what they’re spinning right now and they don’t want to take chances. They’re losing listeners by the droves every single day.

 

Besides, radio is becoming increasingly less effective in breaking new artists so the money spent on radio promo wouldn’t really be well spent at this particular stage of the game.

Find Your Sound Guitar Music Collage

 

We all agreed that this was the kind of record we wanted to make and we began to get Bailey with the songwriters that were willing to do business our way.

 

I say “our way” because it takes guts and commitment to purposefully write something you know probably isn’t going straight to radio. Writers get paid on the back end, with performance royalties, so why would they want to mess with this?

 

I gathered some writer friends and we went to work. I told the writers that the imagery had to be specific, keep it in the schoolyard. If the lyrics were universal enough that Carrie or Miranda could sell it, they had to go back to the drawing board. I wanted the kids to look at Bailey and say, “She speaks for us. She is our voice.”

 

Melodically we wanted bigger melodies like Patsy Cline. Chord wise we wanted 1960’s country.

 

See what I’m doing here?

Find Your Sound 30,000 feet

 

I have an artist that lives and breathes old school country who is STOKED to make a record in that vein. I also have a vacuum in the market place.

 

Perfect.

 

Moreover, I told Bailey’s parents if we made a record like this Bailey would stick out like a sore thumb from all the Disney bubblegum pop music.

 

We all agreed this was a good thing to “stick out”.

 

Find Your Sound Blueprint Fingerprint

 

This initial understanding of a defined artistic lane was mission critical to picking the songs that made the EP. Bailey and the writers wrote a bunch, we picked 5 Bailey co-writes, 1 outside cut, and they were all melodically and lyrically dialed into the vision.

 

Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

 

 

 

I have some questions for you.

 

Have you defined your artistic lane?Find Your Sound Define

How much competition is there in your artistic lane?

What kind of thought have you given towards your sound?

 

To find your sound you have to build around your strengths as an artist.

 

Bailey’s strengths, artistically lay in her voice, her love for old school country, and her age which gives us an advantage in the marketplace. This all has to do with the making of her sound, at least a sound that has a chance of standing out in the current marketplace and being heard by someone.

 

So Bailey is a great example of a solo artist whose sound was put together a certain way from the very beginning.

 

But what if you’re a band and you’re songs are already written? Let’s take a look at Van Halen and see exactly what producer Ted Templeman did to create their sound.

Find Your Find Your Sound DLR

 

David Lee Roth is arguably one the very best front men ever to walk on stage (and in the interest of complete transparency I’ll tell you that he’s my favorite. AMAZING LIVE SHOW.)

 

However DLR would never win American Idol.

 

 

 

Ted was smart enough to know that the “live show” attraction of DLR wasn’t going to translate well onto tape. That’s a live thing. Eddie would though.

 

FREE VALUE BOMB: Btw, Templeman who was also a Sr. VP of Warner Brothers Records along with Mo Ostin Find Your Sound Free Value Bombwho was the Chairman, passed twice on Van Halen demos, it didn’t come across on their recordings. They LOVED Eddie and wanted to sign him alone, but didn’t like DLR (Templeman originally wanted to put Sammy Hagar with Eddie!) It wasn’t until they both saw Van Halen live opening for Dokken (whom they were there to see) that they got it and agreed to sign Van Halen.

 

 

Templeman wanted the record to be about the guitar. That’s what was so special. Think about it.

 

COMPARE: Here is a link to one of the earlier Van Halen demos. Let’s just dissect the first song “On Fire”. It’s all there but it’s scattered and a bit out of focus isn’t it? Structurally as well as moment-wise.

  • The harmonic guitar lickFind Your Sound Van_Halen_Demo
  • Occasional badass DLR vocal scream (notice the first high note DLR hits is a real weak sounding falsetto without the signature multi overtone growl that he easily performs later on in the chorus “I’m on FIYAAAAA!”
  • The chorus hook, the vocal arrangement on the pre chorus “I’m hangin’ ten now baby, as I ride your sonic waaaaave” (ascending scream behind wave).
  • The guitar lead

 

Now, listen to VH I album cut of “On Fire” very carefully. The differences can mostly be attributed to Templeman’s input crafting their sound. Finding moments and featuring them.

  • First of all a bunch of fat was cut from the track.
  • The guitar was panned all the way to the left with only the reverb return coming out of the right. (Definitely a Find Your Sound Van Halen Irevved up guitar sound that Templeman credits completely to Eddie)
  • Drums and bass were all the way to the right with DLR straight up the middle. (This abnormal mix strategy FEATURED the guitar.)
  • Bombastic beginning chord progression before the signature riff starts.
  • Notice, from the get go, the recording is loaded with all kinds of guitar licks filling up the vocal holes, featuring Eddie’s guitar prowess.
  • Notice Templeman LOVED the harmonic guitar lick and featured it making it a recurring guitar hook. VH did it on the demo, Templeman did it more.
  • The vocal melody was re-crafted subtly but it’s genius because it’s more powerful and memorable (more question/answer on the melody…do you hear it?)
  • The end of the guitar solo was changed a bit to give Eddie a “lily pad” to land on giving the lead, which was ascending and creating tension, resolution at the end.
  • All the falsetto voices from DLR are badass strong tone with signature growl that was intermittent on the demo. Many are doubled.

 

So to find YOUR sound you need to think like a record executive and create a lane with little or no competition. You also need to think like a producer and bring out the strengths of the act on the recording.

 

Sometimes you just need to write a BUNCH to hone in on your sound. The Beatles wrote at least 50-150 songs before they began to get it.

 

Find Your Sound Microphone

 

Last thing. Both the artists in these case studies are extremely talented. Both of them needed outside help to focus the talent and make it really shine for an audience.

 

 

Who’s helping you?

Stay

In

Tune.

 

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29 Cool Tools That Will Improve Your Content Quality

Content Tools Pic Monkey feature meme

Content,Content Tools typorama content, content. That’s what it’s all about people. If you’re an artist you are also a small business. I know that concept sickens some of you and is thrilling for others but it is true.

 

Corporations are learning quickly how to cut through the clutter by “humanizing” their brand via killer, intentional content. If they’re a tire company they’re posting more than “buy our tires”. Yes they may have calls to action from time to time but they’re focusing on different ways to get their widget in front of you in a manner that’s clever, witty, shocking, funny, etc., because that is what ultimately becomes sharable.

 

Here’s the deal: you need to think the same way.

 

Indie artists have similar problems don’t you?  You are desperately trying to get your music heard in a veritable ocean of noise.

 

How do you stick out?

Answer:  Killer content.

 

The best, most unique content is going to orbit around you and/or the members of your band. What I mean by that is the content has to focus not only on your music or art, but also on your other interests. This is where you “humanize” your brand which should be far easier for an artist because they actually are human as opposed to those faceless corporations.

 

In this article I wanted to share with you the tools that I have used to create some killer content very quickly. These tools include, image creators, image editors, typography apps, GIF creators, video editors, screen capture software, and images sources.

 

Content Tools Plan Change

Most of these are free and most are available on both Windows and IOS based devices. I have tried to the best of my ability to inform you when the app is platform specific and when it costs money. Forgive me if I’ve missed a couple, while I’ve used most of them at one point or another, I have my favorites and those are the ones I will speak most intelligently about. I wanted to offer up choices for you to play with.

 

By the way, if you’re just getting into this, let me save you the suspense, your first images will take the most time and be the worst images ever! Don’t let your first experience dictate whether you’ll create content. All these apps are extremely user friendly so once you get your head around them you’ll be FAST. I PROMISE!

It will be foreign in the beginning so promise yourself that you’ll push through the crappy first couple pictures, ok?

Here are 29 killer content creation tools.

Image Creation

  1. PicMonkey – Picmonkey ($30/year also a limited free version) is the tool I use the most. It allows youContent Tools Pic Monkey create collages, resize, add typography (tons of killer fonts) (3D image options), frame the image, superimpose logos, superimpose other images, tons of filters, touch up facial images, rotate, and crop. Play with all the different filters after you have added your text; it’s amazing how a certain filter can make your text “pop”. PicMonkey also allows you to save as different kinds of image files i.e. png, jpg, gif, etc..
  2. Canva – ($10/month) Just like PicMonkey with all the features but I like some of their design items better as they have cleaner shapes and design features. I’ve been contemplating a change recently but it’s obviously more expensive.Content Tools Canva Logo (2)
  3. Designfeed – (Free) is a tool I haven’t used but I wanted to throw it in for choice.

 

 

 

 

Video Editors

  1. Wondershare Filmora – ThisContent Tools Filmora Logo is a free software download that is super simple, super easy, and super cool. It easily allows you to upload a video and create a little movie either via a sequence of images or sequence of videos. It offers some a basic crossfade feature as well. What I really like about Filmora is that is quickly allows you to strip the audio from the original video file and either delete it or mute the volume to make room for an audio file you choose to replace it with. What if you found a compelling, super sharable 15 second video snippet and you replaced the audio with the chorus hook from your very best song? Hmmm that could be interesting exposure. Learning curve on this tool is ridiculously fast.Content Tools Final Cut Pro
  2. Final Cut Pro – ($300) this program is expensive but far more sophisticated to the point you can make actual music videos with it. I try to keep the content creation as clever and unsophisticated as possible because there is so much to create. This is called sustainability. You want sustainability.
  3. Windows Movie Maker, iMovie – Both of these are free in your PC or Mac. They are basic but can be really effective for repurposing content from a lengthier video down to sharable, 15 second snippets for Instagram and Twitter.

 

GIF Creation

  1. Giphy.com – This is pretty neat site that is free. It allows you to upload any video and create a GIF. How Content Tools Giphyinteresting would it be to post GIFs that were created from live shows, studio time, crazy antics backstage, road breakdowns, etc? GIF’s grab more attention.
  2. GIFMaker.me – This site allows you to reduce size, resize, reverse, merge and split GIFs. You can crop, rotate, and compress animated GIFs as well.

 

 

Screen Capture –Content Tools Jing

  1. Jing – Jing is a killer free software tool for screen capture that has a few handy editing tools like the ability to highlight, add arrows, add boxes, and change image size.
  2. Snagit (Mac & Windows) ($49.95) – Snagit is the older brother of Jing more features like creating videos of your screen (say for online tutorials) and clearly a cost.
  3. Skitch (IOS only) ­- I haven’t used this, provided for choices.
  4. Print Screen – Windows + PrntScrn on a PC and in Mac Command + Shift + 4 will allow you to screen Content Tools Snagit Logocapture. Both of these are free, of course, but they don’t allow editing.

 

 

 

 

Typography

  1. Picmonkey ($30/year) – Again, PicMonkey allowsContent Tools Over logo you to add text to any image and play with fonts, colors, overlays, etc. Great tool and I’m quite happy with the price.
  2. Over – I didn’t add this in the Image creation section only because Over is an app for your mobile device. It also allows image creation and over-lays.
  3. Phonto – this app is super user friendly, man. There are a ton of fonts and it allows you to upload to Instagram directly from the app which is cool.
  4. Typorama – Ok, this is a KILLER app! Not only does it have different fonts but it offers many different creatively laid out fonts for super-fast content creation that. Each fContent Tools Phonto Logoont and stylistic layout will automatically change with one tap of your finger. FYI, some of the fonts require a purchase to unlock them but there is an awesome selection of free styles but they do come with a watermark. Definitely worth checking out. YES, you can share right from the app.
  5. Wordswag ($3.99) – I haven’t tried Wordswag. Provided to give you options.
  6. Studio – Cool little app that is mainly all about adding text. Check it out, you’ll master it in 30 seconds.
  7. Brandr – Brandr has all the typography elements but it also has a library of 1000’s of quotes already to share so that can save you some time as well.Content Tools Typorama logo

 

 

 

 

FREE Image Sources ***NOTE*** make sure you are aware of the license. On Google Images, Flickr, and sometimes Wikimedia Commons there are licenses that require you to attribute the photographer. On Google Images there are images that are owned by huge companies like Getty Images and these companies will sue you if you haven’t paid for the image license.Content Tools Search cc Logo

  1. creativecommons.orgThis is probably my most used source for images. I go to Pixabay first, then to Wikimedia commons second, then to Flickr third.
  2. Pixabay – This is my favorite image site for the last few years. It is totally free and accessible via search.creativecommons.org.Content Tools Pixabay Logo
  3. Wikimedia Commons – Almost all the images here are free and you can use them however you want. You won’t typically find people on Pixabay so I go to Wikimedia Commons for that. Lots of vintage photos too, so that could be pretty cool branding DNA.
  4. Flickr – Flickr is an awesome site but be prepared to have to shout out the photographer. Usually their pretty good with that but you need to be aware.
  5. Unsplash – I JUST became aware of this site (by listening to an educational podcast…but I digress) and it is quite impressive. Have fun with these amazing hi res images. Instagram is ALL about images so they have to be compelling.Content Tools Wikipedia Commons Logo
  6. Google Images – I will use Google images a lot but usually for public domain type stuff like a meme, logo, record cover art work image, etc. BE CAREFUL with any other images.

 

 

Image EditorsContent Tools Afterlight Logo

  1. Afterlight – is a cool app with a suite of old timey filters and overlays that can definitely be used as a DNA “fingerprint” of sorts. A good way to separate yourself from all the other images out there with some filter “hook” that you dig.
  2. Hipstamatic – (IOS only) Apple’s first App of the Year. This app was a killer gift so I’m unsure of the cost but there is a cost. It’ll allow you to do multiple exposure shots for cool creative results. Also, you can manually control focus, white balance, exposure, shutter speed, ISO, and aspect ratio. It has a Classic Mode that makes your digital image look analog. Super COOL for creating your own visual voice with your content.Content Tools Hipstamatic Logo
  3. Framatic – (Free with a watermark) this cool app allows you to create quote MEMEs superfast and change the text design with one tap of your finger. Really worth checking in to.
  4. Squareready – (Free but there are Pro features that require payment) this app quickly formats your images to be ready for Instagram.

 

I hope you find some value out of this. Hit me up on social media and let me know which ones are your favorites and why!

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

If you like this content then please SHARE and COMMENT

 

 

 

 

What Happened To Your Intention? How To Craft Professional Success

Intention Feature Meme

The road to hell is paved with good intention.Intention Road To Hell

 

I would imagine one version of hell would be described as a blissfully unaware artist who is forever trying to grab the brass ring but is nowhere ever near it. The hell would be the dumbfounded frustration that the artist feels because they believe they are doing it  right and can’t imagine why the world won’t catch on. This is preventable with intention.

 

Let me clarify, good intentions are different from your intent to succeed, which is vastly different than working intentionally.

 

Intention Working IntentionallyThink about that.

 

I came up with this as I walked the dogs this morning. There are 3 brand new homes going up in our neighborhood. Two other new homes have just been completed for a total of five new houses being added in the last 6 or so months.

 

I was thinking how smooth the process runs on every level of construction, then staging, then sales.

 

 

Every different subcontractor knows their job description perfectly. They each know their lane and are supposed experts in that lane. The Electricians aren’t trying to be plumbers. The Plumbers aren’t trying to frame doors, and the door framers aren’t trying to pour concrete.

Intention Collage Contruction Process

 

They are all very intentional in their actions. They are all aware of the rules, what has to happen for their craft work to be considered “up to code”, and where they can get away with cutting corners.

 

They are masters of their game.

 

This is the definition of working with intention.

 

Imagine a foreman at a construction site who naively or arrogantly believes that he can do it all. He believes because he has a cement mixer that means he knows how to pour the footers. Of course he CAN pour whatever he wants if he has the equipment but if he’s not an expert at that, the house will be ruined.

 

Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.

 

Imagine if the foreman, who’s excuse was that he didn’t have enough money to build a proper home, called his step-brothers’ first cousin’s, great aunt who had a neighbor that took an electricity class once back in the 70’s to handle the structural electrical wiring.

Would it work?Intention Monkey Electrical Meme

Would it be up to code?

Would it compete?

Here’s a more important question, would you buy that house?

 

So many artists whose intent is to be a professional artist, are not aware of all the different lanes of creativity that require excellence if the end product is to seriously compete in the marketplace.

 

To think and therefore act like a professional artist, you need to be acutely aware of what you’re good at and where you need assistance.

 

You have to be educated and intentional.

 

Intention Einstein Genius quote

 

Why do so many artists feel compelled to do it all? I can really only think of a few people who are that remarkably gifted. The rest of us need a team and the genius comes in the realization that you need a team (which puts you ahead of all the ignorant do-it-yourself-ers) and who you end up picking.

 

 

Farting around in your home studio working on demos and playing with arrangements to hone your craft is one thing. Putting the recordings out for the world to hear and expecting or hoping it will compete is another.

 

Masterful songs, masterful performances, and masterful records do NOT happen by accident (which is what some of you think is the definition for “organic”).

 

Money is not your problem.

 

Some of you are so dead broke you can’t eat and if you worked smarter, you could up your bank account enough to satisfy your basic needs. MOST of you, however, spend your discretionary income in the wrong places and you are the source of your artistic frustration. (I say it all the time but why not double down on yourself and purchase more books about the new music business, social media, marketing, etc.?)

Intention Studio Team Strengths

 

If you don’t believe in yourself enough to invest it all, then you don’t. Why should anyone else?

 

You need to work intentionally first on defining your audience and looking for a vacuum in the market place. What will your lane be exactly?

 

For instance, a few years ago I worked with an amazing Canadian artist, singer/songwriter named Tanya Marie Harris. At the time she came into my awareness the “angry ex-girlfriend” songs from Carrie Underwood and Miranda Lambert were getting major spins. The whole “party girl” Gretchen Wilson era was just starting to settle down but still very prominent on country radio. All three of these major label artists are quite amazing and it’s no surprise that they became so popular for these songs.

 

I STILL love “I’m Here for the Party”, “Before He Cheats”, and “Gunpowder and Lead” because these are KILLER songs, I don’t care who you are.

 

Intention Tanya Marie Harris

Tanya loved these as well.  When we began choosing songs she was understandably leaning towards songs like these; it’s what was on the radio. She brought me a drinking party song called “3 Shot Max” which was totally badass. I remember loving it.

 

 

Here’s where the intention comes in.

 

You see Tanya was happily married with an 18 month old beautiful baby girl. This fact begged the question, “Are you a party girl or angry ex? Is that the image you want to sell?”

 

Tanya, like me and the rest of the country music world was seriously enjoying these songs but that didn’t mean it was the right “lane” for her. Right then and there she had an epiphany. She was like, “Oh my God, NO, Johnny! I never thought about it like that.”

 

My intention as a producer was to ensure that whatever art we put out with Tanya was going to be authentic to her and not contrived.

Intention_A_Woman_Scorned

 

Once we crafted this understanding, we made a song choice using one of Brent Baxter’s co-writes called “A Woman Scorned” which scratched my artist’s “powerful woman” itch but cleverly told the story from a third person point of view; as if you watching a movie. This worked for her brand because she was essentially describing the situation, not living it.

 

I also talked Tanya in coming into town 1 day early and set her up with two co-writes telling the writers, “I’m cutting 2 songs tomorrow morning. I have the songs. If you beat one of em today on this write, we’ll cut yours.”

 

Intention Secondhand_Dreams

Tanya and David Norris did exactly that and wrote “Secondhand Dreams” about their fathers (the video currently has 1.8 million views).

 

AUTHENTIC as you can get man. Both these songs got decent radio play in Canada. They were real and competitive.

 

You have to be intentional about creating an amazing song. The blueprint has to be great or the team won’t matter. Sure they’ll be good at putting lipstick on a pig but it’s still a pig and it won’t compete.

Intention Lipstick on a Pig

 

Then you need to be deliberate about the recording. Who’s playing the performances, who’s engineering, producing, mixing, etc.?

 

Being resourceful to save money is great as long as it works.

However, when the project suffers, you’ve wasted your money and your time.

 

If it doesn’t compete, then you’ve still spent money but you have nothing that is going to advance your artist brand and career.

 

If you don’t know the difference, you’re in trouble.

 

You have an experiment that while cathartic and healthy for your artistry, is detrimental to your brand and career. This is no good.

 

Intention Uninhabitable

That foreman has to sell that house to make a living. It has to be deemed inhabitable in order to sell it.

 

 

“Inhabitable” is not a subjective term. The city codes will decide what is inhabitable and what is uninhabitable.

 

Too many of you confuse your art and the reality of the business.

 

Art is subjective but it is also objective because it needs to be well done. You can subjectively loathe Brittany Intention William HungSpears but you can’t argue the fact that her records are well done creatively as well as in the marketing space. On the contrary, you can be as nice as you want but there is no subjective soul that actually liked William Hung’s horrible American Idol audition of “She Bangs”. He was a novelty because it was SO horrible which made for good TV.

 

 

 

How do you want to be perceived? Do you want your music to matter to consumers or do you want to be a cocktail party joke?

 

 

Intention Laughing Cocktail Party Joke

Consider this:  If you did not work with intention at your day gig, you wouldn’t be surprised or hurt after being fired.

 

If you weren’t educated on the process necessary for success your employer would either expect you to learn quickly (depending on the gig) or you’d be terminated.

 

 

 

Why then do you proceed, willy-nilly, often like a blissfully ignorant bull in a china shop, with your artist career, working without a plan, without education on the process, without intention, and become artistically mortified that the world doesn’t care about your art?

 

How much time have you wasted?

 

Yes, in an employment scenario you can quickly get on the job training, however if you don’t have access to on the job training for all the facets of your artist career how will you learn? How can you get access?

Intention Crazy Houses

Photo Credit: takmemarehasti.blogfa.com/

 

Imagine the construction subcontractors tried to succeed at their gigs in the same manner most artists try to succeed in theirs; osmosis or divine intervention. I’m just going to keep doing this until I get better but with zero training on plumbing, electrical, how to frame a door, how to pour concrete, etc.

 

Imagine if the subcontractors were still building homes like wannabe artists are posting their demos.

 

Subcontractors are required to LEARN the appropriate methodologies before their allowed to get a freakin’ license.

 

Sometimes I feel like Pro-Tools licenses should be given out with the same requirements.

 

This is what I want you to think about.

 

Artist development is intentional.

 

Intention Crazy Houses

The Beatles were intentional artistically and in the marketplace. They spent thousands of hours in Hamburg performing 8 hour gigs and writing. John Lennon once stated that the first 50-100 songs they wrote were complete crap.

 

They were calculated in their artistic goals to become better writers. They were NOT naïve trying to record and release the first song they wrote out of artistic pride.

 

Once the Beatles got their act together, their wholesome image was painstakingly calculated. Then the market and charts were manipulated to expose them to as much as possible to get people talking. They were good now, they learned. It was time for them to be seen.

 

The Stones were intentional artistically and in the marketplace. Their first 2 records were all blues covers. Their Intention the Rolling Stonesimage was purposefully crafted as the “anti-Beatles”. The Stones image was always constructed to be “dirty” and “dangerous” to separate them from the Beatles in the marketplace ON PURPOSE.

 

None of this happened by accident and neither will your career.

 

It’s not productive, and frankly it’s not OK that you approach your artist career with a serious lack of marketing and recording education floating on top of a truckload of childlike naiveté about how the business works.

 

If you want to succeed, you’re going to have to STEP UP.

 

Intention Chess Feature

 

Whatever you’re doing it isn’t enough.

 

Who can you learn from?

 

 

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

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Why You Need To Make Time For Marketing Your Music

Make Time Feature Meme

Head check time. Take a deep breath.

 Make Time Head CheckI ask the same question of all incoming Daredevil Insiders, “What are you most frustrated with?”

 

Make Time Henry Rollins Quote

 

Most common answer:  “Marketing my music and social media”.

What’s the #1 reason most artists say they are not up to speed on marketing?

 

Most common answer:  They don’t have time.

There is no such thing as spare time.

There is no such thing as free time

There is no such thing as down time.

You only have life time.

                                -Henry Rollins

 

Ponder that one for second.

 

I.

Don’t.

Have.

Time.

 

Make Time You First Baby MEME

I believe in my heart that most of you are not delusional, at least I want to anyway. You are WELL aware that your music will not find an audience by itself, simply through social sharing. If that was the case record labels wouldn’t need marketing departments (yeah, let that one simmer a bit).

 

No, your music will have to be exposed to an audience that is inclined to like it. That audience will have to get to know you and be subsequently persuaded to believe you are worth a damn before they’ll line up behind you and support you.

 

Then you’ll have to further influence them to buy your music.

 

In order to do that, they will have to like YOU first before they open their hearts, heads, and eventually their wallets.

 

Some of this targeted audience will like you.

 

Some won’t.

 

This, you should expect.Make Time Target Connect MEME

 

Here’s the recipe: Target, connect, engage, expose, REPEAT.

 

This is how you build relationships on social media.

 

You have to find strangers that are inclined to liking your music, turn those strangers into friends, and then turn those friends into customers.

 

I’ve got news for you, this is going to take some time.

 

More time than it took you to write, rehearse, and record your songs.

 

Make Time End of your Rope

Are you at the end of your rope?

 

Are you super frustrated because you’re not finding and growing your audience like you want to?

 

Are you broke?

 

Are you panicked?

 

Are you experiencing doubt about your art?

 

“I don’t have time”.Make Time Mr. Hand

 

Let’s dissect that statement for a second. (Why do I feel like Mr. Hand from Fast Times at Ridgemont High right now?)

 

 

Imagine you’re driving along a country road during a super harsh snow storm. The kind of snow that’s heavy Make Time Jeep Snow PICTURE LIGHTSbecause it’s wet and requires your wipers to be on. You come up on a brand new vehicle stranded on the side of the road, hazard lights flashing. As you approach, through the whiteout conditions you see the driver alongside a black 4×4 Jeep.

 

You think to yourself, “How can this dude be stuck when he has the ultimate all-terrain vehicle? He’s clearly not down in a ditch or marooned in a snow bank of any kind.”

 

You see the driver wearing a brownish-orange ski jacket, green hat, off brand snow boots, and he is clearly hostile. He is CURSING the vehicle!

He’s red faced and screaming, “You #$%&#@ piece of crap!” while kicking his own truck.Make Time Red Jacket Snowfall

 

Wow, you’re a little scared to get out of your car at this point because he’s so irate, but your compassion wins and you decide you’re going to try to help him.

 

You open your door and walk over to the driver and ask, “What’s going on, can I help you?”

 

The driver is clearly aggravated, but sensing your genuine concern, he warms up a little bit.

 

Make Time Yelling 1

“This stupid truck won’t work, IT WON’T WORK! I’ve tried everything. I think the dealership guys are a bunch of crooks! They never wanted to give me a truck that was actually functional. Can you BELIEVE THAT? It’s a conspiracy! How can I possibly get to work without this truck? How the hell do they expect me to pay the note when I can’t get to work BECAUSE THEY SOLD ME A LEMON?!?!”

 

Whoa, this guy got screwed!” reverberates in your head.

 

You ask, “Hey man that looks like a nice SUV. What do you think is wrong with it?”

 

He hastily retorts, “They screwed me, happens every time! I’m always trying to get ahead and then they screw me!”

 

You can see on his face that he means it. He really feels this. Empathy surfaces.Make Time Yelling 2

 

 

 

Now you just want to hug him and tell him everything is going to be ok if you’re a girl, and if you’re another guy, you want to help him fix the problem, because that’s what we do.

 

So you begin to ask more questions.

 

“What happened EXACTLY? Did you hear a noise? A thump? Have you had problems before? Did you hit something?”

Make Time Hug

“NO!” He yells, “I JUST BOUGHT THE DAMN THING TODAY!” Then his aggressive tone mellows to a defeated kind of submissive whine like an 8 year old who has finally come to terms with the fact that she has to clean her room, or else. “Maybe I didn’t get a good enough truck. Maybe I should have paid more for the better one. It’s so hard, ya know? The world doesn’t like me. I’m thinking I’m not really supposed to own this truck and this is a sign. I really wanted this Jeep, but I’m just going to go back to driving a crusty, rusted out shit box because that’s all I deserve.”

 

You think to yourself, “Oh my goodness, this poor soul

 

You proclaim, “I’m going to help you!” You hear yourself spout out a little white lie, “I know a little about trucks ya know! Lemme look under the hood.”Make Time Engine

 

You pop the hood and this engine is in showroom condition. He really did just buy this truck today! You check whatever the hell every rookie checks when they are looking for an obvious answer with the engine problem, but come up with nothing.

 

Then you ask, “Is it turning over?”

 

At this point the poor, beaten-down driver musters a feeble tone, “Yes, but it won’t start.”

 

Make Time Car Battery

So it’s not the battery” you surmise silently, which you then satisfactorily qualify remembering the pristine, showroom terminal connections when you examined the engine.

 

You decide to experience the starting issue first hand and after gaining permission, you jump in the driver’s seat and turn the key.

 

Turns over perfectly, but just as your distressed motorist described, she won’t fire up.

 

Then you begin to glance at the gauges.

 

Electrical: CHECK!Make Time EMPTY

 

Oil Pressure: CHECK!

 

Engine Temperature: CHECK!

 

Fuel: EMPTY!

 

Wait, what?

 

You double check by turning the key on again to ensure the gauge needle doesn’t drop to EMPTY when the key is off but it stays at EMPTY.

 

Time What

“Excuse me, buddy, but it looks like you’re out of gas.” You thought to yourself “Wow, it can’t be this easy and why doesn’t this guy know this?

 

He looks at you, dumbfounded, and queries, “What do you mean?”

 

“Yeah, you’re out of gas, brother. I don’t know whether you’ve had a long trip after driving it off the lot or if they just didn’t have that much gas in the tank when you bought it, but you just need to put some fuel in there and she’ll purr like a kitten! Why didn’t you bother to check the fuel level before you started driving in this mess tonight?”

 

“I don’t have time,” he proclaimed. “I have a job, 2 kids, medical bills and my mother in law lives with us who I have to take care of. I’m also an artist, so I have band practice, I write, sometimes I record, and we’re always gigging, AND I have health problems.”Make Time Dog Head

 

Your head turns sideways like a dog when you make a funny noise. “Ruh?”

 

“I’m serious,” he says, “I just don’t have any time.”

 

“Hey man, if you don’t put gas in this vehicle it’s never going to go anywhere, you get that, right?”

Make Time Don't Have Time

 

“Yeah, I know, I just don’t have time”.

 

“OK, I get you’re stressed but it really doesn’t matter. No gas no go. There’s nothing wrong with this truck, it’s not working because you haven’t put gas in it; simple as that. You’re going to have to make time to fuel this beast or suffer the consequences.”

 

He looks down at his feet, now covered in 1/2 inch of snow and kicks a bunch into the wind. “If I could only just meet the right person, someone who could change my situation, I would be in a much better place. I’m totally due, I’m a really good artist, I’m sure it’ll happen, I believe in myself.”Make Time Complain

 

You blink your eyes. “Um, dude…you need gas.”

 

“I need a record deal, or a manager, or a booking agent, THEN I won’t have to worry about gas, this thing will run like a champ!”

 

“WTF” you softly whisper to yourself. “Hey man, I’m not trying to disrespect you, but you are going to have to find the time to put gas in your truck on a consistent basis or it isn’t going to work at all, that’s like a freakin’ law of physics or something.”

 

Make Time Physics

 

Now the conversation and the issue at hand skews to the outer limits of reality as he replies, “Well, the Shell station is having a contest, they’re giving away a year’s worth of gas and I’m pretty confident I can CRUSH that and win!”

 

[Queue The Twilight Zone music: do do do do do do do do]

 

“I hope you win that, I really do, but you’re still going to need to make time to put the free gas in your truck,” you state terrified of the coming response and how much more unreal this conversation could get.Make Time Shell Station

 

“Not if I have a record deal or a manager, or someone who believes in me! I’m awesome, you don’t understand, everybody loves my music.”

 

“OK, God bless. Can I give you a lift to gas station so you can get gas before the snow gets out of hand tonight?”

 

“Naw, I’m good. I’m just about to win that contest and get a deal, all my problems are just about to be over, thanks anyway, I’m going to wait here until some big industry executive stops and discovers me. I have my guitar in the Make Time All Righty Thenback; that should be enough to convince him. A good song always wins, right?”

 

Aaaaaaaaallllllllll RIGHTY THEN

 

And you drive off.

 

Of course, you never heard from him again.

 

Because he didn’t have time.Make Time Time Clock Swirl

 

Get it?

 

Don’t be this tool.

 

If you’re frustrated, it’s because things aren’t working properly.

 

If things aren’t working properly it’s because you don’t know what you’re doing.

 

Make Time Failure MEME

THAT’S FIXABLE.

 

Step one: Stop relying on your inaccurate fantasies about the music industry and find out what you’re doing wrong by learning. There are plenty of books, webinars, paid coaching, and consulting resources available if you find the time. I promise, you’ll feel BETTER after the first influx of good information. Learning RECHARGES your spirit! The truth creates momentum.

 

Step two: Reevaluate what you’re doing wrong and begin tweaking your currently flawed process.

Make Time Empathy

Step three: Witness the miraculous change in your career.

 

All you have to do is find the time.

 

I realize that this story was stupidly predictable. Obviously we need to make time for gassing up the car and even though you’re probably not, you know you need to make time for marketing.

 

However, the real moral of the story is the attitude and mood of the stranded motorist (artist).

 

Can you relate with his mood swings from hostile, to frustrated, to utter defeat, to doubt, and finally delusion?

 

From your point of view as the guide of the story, who intuitively knows that all these raw emotions and stress are silly and preventable with a little gas, you thought the stranded motorist was a simpleton.

 

Make Time SkeletonYou understandably and predictably thought this because the solution was obvious.

 

 

 

Until you take that notion seriously, you’ll be stuck on the side of the road waiting out a never-ending snow storm.

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

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Poverty? How To Think Your Way Out Of It.

Poverty Think Your Way Out Feature

This is going to piss a lot of artists off, but it really is the truth and I want to make you aware of it; otherwise you simply won’t grow. Poverty is a state of mind. It has very little to do with access to Poverty Old Womanresources or capital. This goes for artistic poverty as well as regular plain old poverty.

 

The following information on this poverty study came into my awareness as a result of paid coaching I received from Tai Lopez. I paid for this coaching because he had some answers and I was seeking knowledge. All this comes into play in this article. (To be clear, while I WHOLEHEARTEDLY believe in paid coaching, I am not advocating for Tai Lopez, I’m just giving credit where credit is due).

Joseph Stiglitz won a Nobel Prize as an economist and his scientific research confirmed that what actually keeps nations, communities, and individuals poor is not primarily a lack of capital or opportunities (what most people think)

Instead, Stiglitz found that the root is a lack of knowledge, and more specifically a lack of knowledge on how to gain more knowledge.

The inability to learn quickly and efficiently…Poverty Joseph Stiglitz

What his research found was, “What separates developed from less-developed countries is not just a gap in resources but a gap in knowledge.”

Like the Chinese saying goes, “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime.”

You must learn how to learn.

It’s an art and a skill.

Most people learn too slowly due to their fixed mindset that won’t adapt to feedback analysis because of their simple stubbornness and delusion (wishing the world was like their fantasies instead of having the courage to seek truth). 

Learn how to learn more quickly and you will live a very rich life (not just financially).

 

What will change your life is NOT one person, one record executive, one big time manager, or one opportunity; it will be your mindset.

You have to change your mind first because, I promise, you are the problem. Once you realize that and deal with it, you’ll start to ask the right questions.

Poverty Ask The Right QuestionsWhen you ask the right questions, you seek the right knowledge.

When you seek the right knowledge you get the right answers.

Then your life begins to transform.

 

It’s quite miraculous really.

The record business isn’t holding you down or keeping you out, you are.

Poverty isn’t holding you down or keeping you out, you are.

Poverty blind Darts

 

There are plenty of opportunities to accomplish what you want with your artist career, right there in your little town, but you aren’t taking advantage of them because either you don’t see them or you do see them and can’t recognize them.

 

In short, you don’t know because you lack knowledge and understanding (isn’t that exhausting and frustrating?).

 

If you had knowledge and understanding you would be seeing results, it’s as simple as that.

 

For instance, many of you have become aware of me through the free Twitter book I give away. I constantly get emails and tweets about how people begin to grow their Twitter accounts at a rapid rate immediately after reading that book.

Poverty Music Marketing Book Cover

 

Before they didn’t know. Then they knew. Now they see results! (And it was free!)

The reason you can’t see or recognize these opportunities is because you refuse to learn.

 

 

 

Many of you refuse to learn the truth because your fantasy will get blown to smithereens.

 

You realize that your precious dream of being artist, like every other dream, comes dressed up in overalls looking and smelling a lot like hard work.

Poverty Thomas Edison Quote

 

I constantly get emails from artists who tell me they are broke.

 

But y’all still have money for that next recording, new guitar, new microphone, studio equipment, car, weed, cocktails, rims, hydraulic switches, or long weekend at the beach.

Why not start to double down on yourself with the VERY inexpensive investment in books?

 

Tony Robbins read 700 books when he was starting out. He came from absolute poverty. His mother was so broke they couldn’t afford to purchase Thanksgiving dinner every year. This is why Tony feeds over 100,000 families every year at Thanksgiving.

Poverty Tony Robbins

 

Tony Robbins doesn’t have a college education by the way.

 

There is an EMBARRASSMENT of knowledge right on Amazon.com. You can find books about recording, marketing, music marketing, mindset changes, psychology (to apply to your communicative exchanges with fans), management, the record business, social media, etc.

 

If you’re looking for a book that has an EZ button, you won’t find it. If you’re looking for a book that will tell you exactly what YOU need to get ahead in YOUR career, you won’t find it.

 

That’s where your work ethic and your big brain come in.

Poverty Connect The Dots

 

After the reading is done and your creative juices are flowing, you will start to connect the dots and apply this newfound knowledge to your specific situation.

 

I have read and listened to hundreds of books and podcasts that interview or reveal facts about super influential people like Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Tai Lopez, Steve Jobs, etc.

 

Do you know what every single one of these leading minds have in common?

They read.

 

They read a lot.

Poverty_Tai_Lopez

 

Tai Lopez is famous for reading 10,000 books.

 

 

Stop fidgeting and relax.

 

 

I’m not saying you have to read 10,000 books to succeed.

 

I will ask you this, what was the last book you read that had anything to do with marketing music?

  • How about Content Marketing in general?
  • How about human psychology and how we are wired up to shop?
  • When I ask artists what they are mostly frustrated with by far the most common response is their social media progress. What was the last book you read on that?

 

Get it?

 

Poverty Mark Twain Quote

You need very specific knowledge to get ahead in your chosen career and you’re blowing it by purposefully ignoring the facts and staying tethered to your happy little fantasy.

 

I promise you are lacking some serious data.

 

Which means you’re making important business decisions based on zero or inaccurate information; which is INSANELY expensive.

You can’t afford insanely expensive.

 

Nothing will change until you internalize that fact and rectify it.

 

Every interview or biography I have ever read about a powerful person has a similar quote and it looks something like this, “Books are the best deal out there.”

Poverty Abe Lincoln Book Quote

 

You can gain deep understanding, access and proximity to the greatest minds on this planet, past and present, for somewhere between $2.99 and $15.

 

What?!??!

 

It’s all out there for you.

 

Y’all it is SO EMPOWERING!

 

I LOVE to read because I have a dream to architect a new music business record label with Daredevil Production.

Poverty Gap Collage

 

Every time I read, I get a little closer to that reality. Every book I read gets me super excited about the new ideas I can apply to my dream.

 

 

Sometimes the information comes in the form of validation; like with Seth Godin’s Poverty Permission MarketingPermission Marketing. I read the foreword, introduction, and first 2 chapters of that book and I was literally vibrating. It was everything I have been preaching for the last 4 years at Daredevil (why the hell didn’t I read that before?).

 

 

Sometimes the knowledge manifests in the form of an epiphany or major lesson learned; like with Predictably Irrational. It was in this book that I connected some dots about how humans shop comparatively as opposed to trying to understanding real value.

 

For instance, none of you truly understand the difference in value between a 4-cylinder engine and a 6-cylinder engine. What you do understand is a 6-cylinder engine is bigger so must be worth more. We think we are researching our purchase choices but we are really looking for a comparison that is quick and makes sense to us.

 

Here’s a fun factual story. There was a company that created a $250 bread maker. They had tons of distribution in awesome stores like Williams-Sonoma, etc.Poverty Dan Ariely Quote

 

They weren’t selling any bread makers.

 

They hired a consulting firm that researched the issue and their solution was to make a $400 bread maker.

 

Wait, huh?

 

Yep.

 

They said don’t plan on selling any, just put them on the shelf next to the $250 model.

 

People didn’t understand the value of a bread maker because they had nothing to compare it to.

 

Once the $400 (decoy) bread maker was placed on the shelves of the distributors, the $250 models began to sell out.

 

Pretty cool huh?

I learned that in a book.

 

Poverty Predictably Irrational

A used book that cost me less than $5. Just that one piece of information was worth the money; but there was so much more.

 

A bread maker is as ambiguous of a product as your music. It’s not like construction, medicine, gasoline, food, or some other product or service that society absolutely needs.

 

No, your music, as good as it is, is a product that nobody needs, wants, or is looking for.

Nobody is shopping for new music.

 

You aren’t either if you think about it.

 

You have your jams, you’re all set.Poverty Books

 

Want to think your way out of poverty?

 

What disruption and subsequent chain of events has to happen to open a consumer’s mind and heart about your music enough to influence them to buy?

 

Ahh, now you’re asking the right questions!

 

Stay

In

Tune

P.S. You must learn to learn. Start by reading. Here are a few recommendations to get you started.

 

Poverty Predictably Irrational

Predictably Irrational – Dan Ariely – This book is all about hidden forces that shape our decision making; like the decision to buy your CD. Get it? (Bread maker story was in this one)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poverty My Book

 

 

Advanced Music Marketing On TwitterJohnny Dwinell – Yes, this is me. If you read my first Twitter book (which you can get for FREE if you don’t already have it) you know how to target and grow your followers. This advance book teaches you what to do with them. Essentially how to turn your followers into real fans.

 

 

 

Jab, Jab, Jab, RIGHT HOOK – Gary Vaynerchuk – This book breaks down content marketing on different social media platforms. It shows you the “native” Jab Jab Booklanguages of each platform along with do’s & don’ts. It’s really cool because Gary pulls actual posts from each platform and judges them. You’ll learn a lot.

 

 

 

 

 

Once you devour these, email me. I’ll create a master list of every book I’ve ever read.

 

If you found this article valuable please SHARE it and COMMENT. (Thanks!)

 

How To Make Their Perception Your Amazing Reality

Perception Feature

Perception is reality in your art. You’d better freaking know this. Sadly, many of you don’t or you do and you choose to ignore it for some reason.Perception Perception

 

Perception is also reality in your marketing.

 

I want to talk about how the market, A.K.A. consumers, in other words YOUR POTENTIAL FANS perceive you.

 

I am seeing WAY too much of this online and on social media so I had to write about it.

 

Too many artists are stuck in that developmental stage that little children go through when they believe if they can’t see you, you can’t see them.

 

Do you know what I’m talking about?

 

Perception Hide Baby

It’s a lack of perception awareness.

 

 

They “hide” in the middle of the living room by crouching down and covering their eyes. At this stage they believe that you can’t see them.

 

It’s cute when their little kids.

 

It’s ugly when you’re an aspiring artist.

 

In the industry, it’s downright annoying.

 

Perception Looky Losers Photo Orin ZebestYou know, like the person at the party who won’t stop hitting on you in a super cheesy manner and can’t take the hint from all your body language and actual language that you’re SO not interested.

 

 

 

 

Perception Fingerpaint Photo Erik (HASH) Hersman

 

It’s a sign of naiveté and complete lack of awareness by an artist who displays every little “finger painting”, every little step of their creative process on the world’s refrigerator expecting to be praised.

 

Arrogantly believing the world is interested.

 

You’re going to be judged.

Perception Judged

 

By consumers but also by the industry (if they happen to look. More on that later).

 

If it’s a well written, well recorded, rocking track, you’ll be praised.

 

If it isn’t finished, you’ll look like a novice.

 

Shoulder shrug.

 

On to the video of the talking dog.

 

You have to be aware of how you will be perceived. You’re an artist for Pete’s sake!! That’s exactly part of your job description; masterfullyPerception Magic Shit MEME manipulating perception and emotion.

 

 

When it’s well done it is like magic. People pay to see it.

 

When it’s ignored its shite.

 

 

 

 

 

You will always be judged on what you have done, NOT what you’re going to do or what you think you’re going to do.

Perception Reputation Quote

 

 

All too often, I’ll get an artist who asks me to “check out” their music. I almost NEVER respond to these based on the principle of the matter (crappy way to market) but sometimes I fall for it.

 

Usually I end up lamenting the fact that I can never get that 30 seconds of my life back.

 

 

 

 

I literally had one kid send me a link to a Soundcloud account that was filled with his “songs”.Perception Schizophrenic Girl

 

They were a selection of solitary, distorted, electric guitar rhythm tracks.

 

No melody.

No lyric.

No beat.

Zero on a scale of 1 to whatever in terms of any discernable creative riff.

No other instruments.

Boring.

 

Perception Mark KnopflerI’m not trying to be mean, but it was seriously useless. Chunk, chunk, chunk, chunk, with no meter, no pocket; ugh.

 

I just listened to this Dire Straits isolated guitar track by Mark Knopfler from “Sultans of Swing”. It’s AMAZING!!!

 

Mark Knopfler is a very special guitar player.

 

Here’s the key. As amazing as this isolated track is, we are only interested because we know Dire Straits,

 

we know Mark Knopfler, and most importantly, we know and love the song!

 

If this exact track, with this stellar performance was not a track from a hit song, I wouldn’t give it 5 seconds. Neither would you.

 

Get it?

 

Perception Marvin GayeIn my studio, I have many of the original multi tracks from Motown, The Beatles, The Doobie Brothers, Queen, Def Leppard, and more. These tracks are a party favorite because we know all the songs and it’s interesting to hear something we are so fond of being dissected.

 

We’re fascinated by the soloed vocal tracks.

 

Freddie’s finger snaps at the beginning of “Killer Queen”.

 

We’re floored when we discover that “Long Train Running” has 5 different guitar arrangements that brilliantly work together without cluttering the track.

We freak when we hear Queens, background vocals all alone.

 

I literally cried when I heard Marvin Gaye’s soloed voice from “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough”. The natural distortion on the vocal mic. It was cut live with the band and Tammi Terrell (you can hear the bleed!). You can hear his toe tapping in the vocal booth. Ugh, so moving.

 

Nobody cares if they don’t know the song.

Perception Blind Consumer MEME

 

Perception is so important there are major label artists who refuse to let the A&R guys in the studio until the track is mixed lest the art be judged by some suit with no vision.

 

It’s the artist’s way of controlling the outcome as much as possible. They don’t want the suit’s possibly disheartened attitude over an unfinished product to affect their promo budget once the track is released.

 

Consumers have no vision. They want finished product.

 

 

Think about how much apprehension you feel when you shop for a used car. Imagine the experience of meeting a private seller, who is a stranger, to look at their restored ’64 candy apple red Ford Mustang. You walk into the garage and you see a chassis up on blocks with a seat and a steering wheel.Perception Fear Buyer

 

Wait, what is this?!?!

 

The seller says, “Hey man, it’s going to be great when it’s finished!”

 

Perception Chassis Photo KapitanTIF you are well versed at all the different stages of classic auto restoration you MIGHT take an interest and see the potential.

 

99.9% of consumers would be pissed and walk out; it doesn’t look like a car.

 

 

 

You have to be aware that as an indie artist; you are the stranger selling the car and in your case the consumer isn’t “looking for a car”.

Perception 64 Mustang

 

You have to know that the consumer is apprehensive on several levels because your marketing was probably dodgy and statistically the music is going to suck; BIG TIME.

 

Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

 

You have to blow them away first.

 

Look there are always exceptions, but as a rule, don’t post demos, work tapes, incomplete recordings, soloed guitar tracks, etc. up on the internet as you will be judged.

 

Perception Exception To The Rule

 

What are the exceptions?

 

A soloed vocal track to a beautiful melody, intense lyric, with a compelling vocal performance would be interesting.

 

Anything short of that will sound way better in the track and be boring without it.

 

I have posted work tapes (a simple iPhone recording of an acoustic vocal) before. We had a contest with Bailey James where we let the fans choose the 6th song on her EP. That worked really well. I will say that many (If not all) of the fans who participated had downloaded the free track we were trading in an exchange for an email which is how Bailey came into their awareness.

 

That free track was a KILLER recording of Cheap Trick’s “I Want You to Want Me”. Which allowed us to craft their perception. They were cognizant of Bailey’s professionalism and the work tapes were clearly positioned in the mind of the fans as a “behind the scenes” look at the future mixed with a fun, interactive exercise where they got to participate in the release somehow.

 

However, if we just posted all the damn work tapes from all songs that were written to be considered for her debut release it would’ve worked against us.

perception Scene

 

If the fans don’t see the “scene” they will misconstrue your “behind the scenes” as your “scene”.

 

Many of you don’t even have your “scene” put together so why would you show it?

 

Does that make sense?

 

In Steven Pressfield’s book, The War of Art he conveys that before you become a professional you have to think and act like a professional.

 

Perception War Of ArtThe world doesn’t care if it’s on purpose, lack of awareness, naiveté, or utter stupidity, if you don’t look like a professional then you’re not a professional. It’s that simple.

 

If the car doesn’t look like a cherry ’64 candy apple red Ford Mustang than it isn’t.

 

I saw it with my own eyes.

 

 

In Marketing I see this mistake often with images.

 

 

Images are everything today. There is a reason that Instagram and Pinterest are so huge.Perception Positive Negative

 

A picture is worth 1,000 words.

 

If it’s a bad picture, it’s 1,000 bad words. You disappear into the clutter of every other artist who won’t make the effort or spend the money to stand out.

 

When you present professional images as an artist, the selfies become a savory alternative look.

Perception Many Eyes

 

But only when juxtaposed against the killer images.

 

If your whole visual presence is based on selfies, you don’t look like a professional.

 

The world doesn’t want the blow-by-blow, play-by-play rundown of your amazing artistic ascent until AFTER you make it.

 

The Behind the Music VH1 series where we learn about the artist’s creative stories, business challenges, and addiction troubles are interesting when they’re famous. If they weren’t famous, it would just be a story about a pathetic drug addict.

 

Perception Behind The MusicWho cares?

 

You wouldn’t.

 

Let me ask you this.

 

What if they say “yes”?

 

I love to ask my artists this question.

 

What if you get your act together enough to pique the interest of some big label, booking agent, or manager, etc.?

 

Perception Search

 

What would their first step be to vet you as a possible business partner?

 

They’re going to Google the crap out of you.

 

If their perception becomes that you are unprofessional, happily ignorant of your image both creatively and in the market, you become a turn-off.

Do you want to be a turn off?

 

Do you want to blow a self-created opportunity because you are unaware of perception?

 

If you don’t know, you’d better learn.

 

Stay

In

Tune

It’s Your Cage; It Can Be As Oppressive As You Want It To Be

Cage Feature MEME

Follow me on this, I promise it’s all about artists.

Cage Election BannerElection season is here in the United States and personally, I hate all politicians on both sides of the isle because their job security is not related in any way to performance.

 

That’s an accident looking for a place to happen.

 

It’s gross.

 

Is that just me?

 

You can relax, this isn’t a political rant of any kind. I have my beliefs just like you, but I disdain both sides of the isle because the system doesn’t foster performance when job #1 is just to get reelected. This means they really don’t give a damn about any of us or the country simply because they don’t have to.

They care about your vote, and ALL politicians will pander to you, looking for the biggest common “heart-string” threads they can pull to gain the most votes.

Cage Politician Promise

 

Until Congressional term limits are in place, where the politician incentive changes from “what do I have to do to ride this gravy train a little longer” to “I don’t have much time to leave my legacy so I better get to work” we will continue down the same path. Sadly.

 

 

Until the proper, appropriate, intelligent motivations are woven into our political structure, the sour  arguments, talking points, and voting process will stack up and linger unnecessarily like garbage in a compulsive hoarder’s home.Cage Hoarding

 

 

 

 

I liken it to a group of people standing around a swimming pool, each of them with a different colored cinder block, spouting endless spirited nonsensical rants based on their thoughts, fears, and beliefs, for the purposes of convincing the other side that their cinder block will actually float.

 

Cage Cinder Block Voyeur MEME

Until we reimagine the cinder block, it just isn’t going to happen regardless of your beliefs.

 

Our current arrangement allows us to change said political system as a people, without permission from Congress (via a Constitutional Amendment), but we won’t.

 

And this brings me to my point.

 

This is where my prior statements morph into your reality as an artist.

 

Right now, we live in a country where, for the most part, there is equal opportunity. Yes, it’s flawed, but the opportunities are there.

Cage Slave Collage

 

For thousands of years all kinds of people have been persecuted, enslaved, exterminated, controlled, oppressed, etc., including blacks, Jews, women, Irish, Italian, witches, sorcerers, all religions, gays, people with different skin tone within their own oppressed race, handicapped, the outwardly vocal dissenters, etc.

 

Now, just in this election, we have full term black President nearing the end of his legacy, and so far out of the four front runners in the Presidential race, 1 is a Jew, 1 is a woman, and 1 is a Latino of Cuban decent.

 

 

Here’s my point. Yes we are flawed. Yes, there is always room to improve, but we have opportunities for anyone who wants to grab the brass ring.

 

But, most people won’t.

 

Most people won’t out of fear.Cage Brass Ring

 

It’s a very real fact that most people secretly don’t feel they’re worthy of it.

 

 

 

Cage King Arthur small

 

Only King Arthur can remove the scimitar from the stone.

 

This fear manifests itself in the form of convenient stories we tell ourselves that are designed to create forgiveness,

 

Forgiveness for failing to believe.

 

“But I’m not King Arthur so I can’t grab that sword.”

 

“Money is the root of all evil.”Cage Root Of All Evil

 

“We’re the 99% not the evil 1%”

 

“I need to be perfect before I can bring my art to the world.”

 

“I just need that record deal and THEN I can be serious about my artist career”

 

Cage Perfectionism

 

 

There is still rampant slavery in this world and no politician can EVER promise you that they can somehow change the system to create an equal outcome for every person.

 

 

 

Here’s why.

Yes, you’re a slave.

You’re also the slave master.

 

While your opportunities can be changed by a different political system, your outcome can only be changed by you.

 

Did you catch that?

While your opportunities can be changed by a different political system, your outcome can only be changed by you.

Cage Feature 2

We are all prisoners held captive within our own cage.

 

How far you choose to expand your reality is completely up to you.

 

I’ll give you an example, here is a GREAT video of Tony Robbins being interviewed by Lewis Howes (I love Howes’ podcast).

 

Robbins talks at length about giving.

 

The more you give the more you receive. He was barely making a living at one point when he offered a kid a college scholarship with these rules:

  • You must have a B average
  • No Drugs
  • You can’t go to Jail
  • You must do 20 hours of community service each year.

 

Cage_Lewis_Howes_podcast

 

The community service was a strategic component he placed in there to systemize exposure to giving. This requirement ensured that the beneficiary could experience the biological and mental change which occurs within a soul when it gives.

 

 

Since then, Tony has expanded this amazing scholarship program exponentially but you’d be amazed at how many kids turn down the scholarship because either they, or their parents, don’t believe they should be giving they believe they should be getting.

 

They find the 20 hours of community work requirement offensive so they pass on the gift!

 

There’s that rusty cage I was talking about.

 

Cage 99 percentIncidentally, about 27 minutes in Tony talks about the 99% and their views and attitudes towards money. He says that money is a magnifier of someone’s real self. If you’re mean you’re going to get meaner with money. If you’re generous you’re going to give more with money.

 

 

I personally like the fact Tony states about how half of the population of our planet live on $2.50 per day or $900 per year. Which comparatively in the context of the whole planet, places the poverty stricken Americans, the lowest of the 99%, in that evil 1% category that they love to hate so much.

Cage Tony Robbins Statistic

 

 

 

 

Think about that.

 

 

 

 

 

I find it extraordinarily entertaining when these 99 percenters bash capitalism and capitalists via social media from their iPhones. Nothing like ignorant irony.

Cage Kumbaya

 

 

Listen, most people are standing in a bucket and trying to lift themselves up. Until these people learn to get out of their own way, no institutionalized equal outcome ideologies will help them.

 

 

In your band somebody has to be the spiritual force, the leader. Somebody has to be John, then somebody has to be Paul, somebody has to be George, and somebody has to be Ringo.

Cage Standing In A Bucket

 

 

There will always be hierarchy in all animal species.

 

We’re wired up that way.

 

 

To be uplifted we need to have hope.

 

We need to believe that we can really succeed.Cage Megaphone Guy

 

Then we need to learn how to do it.

 

What we don’t need is any buffoon telling us we’re being held down by the man.

 

Because if we really believe that then it’s true.

 

EVERYBODY has to overcome obstacles to succeed and those obstacles don’t ever go away after you succeed.

 

We don’t need any respected “expert” making us feel these hindrances are somehow “institutionalized” or out of our control, rather we need to think of them as anticipated speed bumps.

 

I have massive respect for individuals who were smart enough, worked hard enough, and were driven enough to get out of their hood, their oppression, their cage, their former reality and make a real dent in the Universe.

 

Cage Name Tag Rich Person

 

I lose that respect when they become famous and use their voice, with the reach of their new found megaphone to complain about their lot in life. To complain about what they had to overcome to get their success.

 

I want to vomit when these achievers, these people who manifested their dreams into their reality whine and jump up and down about persecution, money, unfairness, blah, blah, blah.

 

All they are doing is sucking the wind out of the sails of anyone from their designated oppressed community who has an inkling of hope to achieve the same success.

 

They’re inadvertently proliferating the very problems they content they’re trying to solve.

 

Hey, not for nothing, but some famous people proliferate on purpose because it makes them feel relevant or the social problem actually makes them relevant, but I digress.Cage Politician Megaphone

 

In a misguided attempt to shine a light on their struggle to help others, they are enslaving millions of people on the receiving end of that megaphone by implying that life is impossible because it’s unfair and it’s out of an individual’s control.

 

They naively believe that some social change is going to make the world a fair place and help their downtrodden people rise.

 

Do you see? They’re putting the results of their outcome on someone or something else.

 

Isn’t that kind of an excuse?

 

Then their besieged people respond by doing nothing; waiting around for the world to change.

 

Cage it's Your Cage

Stuck in that cage because now that the onus isn’t on them, it’s the world’s fault, and until it changes to make it easy for them, why try?

 

What these famous achievers should be doing is telling them it can be done!

 

Why won’t they learn how to empower these people intelligently?

 

 

 

There are no equal outcomes.

 

Here’s another example.

 

Cage EM HE BusABC had a hit show called Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.

 

If you haven’t seen this show the producers would find people in need of a new home. The benefactors were vetted by an incredible story that would touch the hearts of America, ABC would then send the family on a luxurious vacation, and build them a brand new home while they were gone.

 

They demolished the old edifice and built the new house in one week!

 

For instance, you’d have a couple with 7 kids living in a 700 square foot house.

 

EM: HE would pay off their current mortgage and build them a 4,500 square foot house; absolutely free.

 

EM HE Before and After 2

 

This concept sounds so beautiful, and it is, but you have no idea the psychological and societal landmines ABC unearthed on this show.

 

In a sense this platform promised an equal outcome, didn’t it?

 

Every lucky subject gets a brand new spacious free house, no mortgage, taxes paid, and their insurance paid.

 

 

Boom.

 

Easy street.Cage Landmine

 

Well, not exactly as it turns out.

 

 

In the first 5 years of this TV series, they had to change the rules to protect the winners from themselves.

 

Too many of the winners ended up destitute again.

 

What?

 

Yes, they got their mortgage paid, a brand new free house, a new car, much better life at no cost, and then somehow found a way to get right back down to being broke again.

 

This was bad press for ABC.Cage Extravagant 2

 

What would happen you ask?

 

The winners would spend the money allotted to cover taxes and insurance on things that weren’t taxes and insurance.

 

They’d take mortgages out on their free house that got them out of squalor to go on vacation, live like a rock star, or start a business that they weren’t smart enough to know they didn’t know about.

 

Some of the people would lose the house because they couldn’t afford the utility bills in the new home.

Cage EM HE Logo Image

 

That’s right, after having zero debt, after all the new relationships they could’ve made in the community from the 2,000 to 4,000 volunteers who would show up to build this house in a week, it ended up that the winners couldn’t figure out a way to make an effort to earn a little more money for the electric bill in the new roomy home.

 

This is because they never believed they deserved it so they never stepped up their game to rise to the occasion.

 

 They clearly weren’t being held down by the man, here. They were being held down by themselves.

 

They couldn’t find a way to use the benevolence to pick themselves up and literally blew it.

 

Cage You Are Your Biggest Obstacle

 

This happened OFTEN.

 

ABC was forced to create rules that wouldn’t allow mortgages to be taken out on the home, untouchable escrow accounts had to be set up ensuring the taxes, insurance, and utilities could be paid for the next 5 years to guarantee ABC that these people couldn’t screw themselves.

 

The winners were pathetic.

 

I don’t say that to be mean or to be condescending.

 

ABC vetted them because they were pathetic which made for good TV. ABC amazingly created a show (which made tons of money by the way) that congregated thousands of local volunteers to help someone in need in their community. The network and these volunteers gave some poor, broken souls a new house, sometimes new vehicles, bills paid for 5 years, and a helping hand to lift them up out of their poverty stricken reality.Cage Pathetic

 

What ABC discovered was that all too often, the new environment, new things, and the new situation did not change the reality of the people they were helping at all.

 

These people were pathetic because they believed they were pathetic.

 

New house, new clothes, new car, same old person.

 

SIDENOTE: This is amazing. Over 50% of the people who were helped by ABC were grateful for the amazing opportunity. The other 50% became instantly entitled and began making snotty demands during and after production.

Cage Complaint

 

Demands for “appropriate” transportation, “appropriate” behind the scenes cuisine, they would turn their noses down on the color of a brand new SUV they just received, etc.

 

They complained!

 

WTF?!?!?!

 

 

Every society is like this.

 

Including you and your band.

 

Cage Winwood Lyrics“Come down off your throne, and leave your body alone. Something must change. You are the reason you’ve been waiting for so long.”

 

You are the answer to overcoming your troubles.

 

It’s your cage.

It can be as big as you want it to be.

It can be oppressive as you want it to be.

It can be abundant as you want it to be.

It can be full of love if you want it to be.

It can be creative if you want it to be.

 

In your cage you can live the dichotomy and suffer like the rest of society tells you that should because it’s the right thing to do (and they can’t figure out how to escape it), or you can step outside of your pitiful little cage, be courageous, and push forward in the face of fear and ridicule.

 

Cage Chains

 

Take a deep breath, experience some failure, and LIVE the life you always dreamed of.

 

You need stop thinking about what you don’t have because it doesn’t matter.

 

 

 

You have to concentrate on your gifts, on what you DO have and build from there.

 

People of influence love to help people who get it; people who they feel are on their way.

 

It has little to do with your talent.

 

It has everything to do with your mindset.

Cage Slave Punisher

Are you a slave?

 

Are you enslaving yourself?

 

Are you a corporate slave?

 

A slave within your relationship?

 

A slave shackled by the misguided thoughts and beliefs of your parents?

 

A slave to your own ineffective methodologies that never seem to work because you refuse to change tactics?

 

A slave to your own ego?

 

Cage Slave NegroA slave because you believe someone else is going to be responsible for your outcomes?

 

Well, no election, major TV network, record label executive, recording studio, management company, booking agent, songwriting partner, and certainly no amount of money is going to free you from your own shackles until you retool your brain.

 

Here’s a good example, we recently lost the incomparable Merle Haggard. Merle was born poor white trash. By the age of 18 his voluminous rap sheet resulted in a 15 year jail sentence. Merle escaped from jail 17 times. This is why he was moved to San Quentin State Prison because the state of California couldn’t figure out how to contain him in a jail. It was in San Quentin where Merle saw Johnny Cash play live and decided to change his life forever.

 

He had nothing and was not captive to a figurative cage, rather a real cage. He was released serving 2.5 years of his sentence and changed his mindset.

 

He had no money.Cage Merle Haggard 2

 

He had no contacts in the music industry.

 

What he did have was his songs and an unrelenting drive to succeed.

 

Hag gave absolutely no one permission to take that drive from him. The rest is history.

 

Sadly, like the subjects on ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, many of you will get some incredible opportunities and completely blow it due to your ignorance.

 

Many of you already have.

 

Ignorance is changed into potential power with education and knowledge. There are plenty of very inexpensive sources for education that only require your action and a couple bucks to implement.

 

FYI, Tony Robbins doesn’t have a college education, but he did read 700 books in 3 years when he first started getting his act together.

 

Cage Amazon Image

 

Why aren’t you reading?

 

Applied knowledge is turned into real power.

 

That’s a power that only you own.

 

It’s a power that will continually create opportunities for you.

 

 

No person, no government, no 1-percenter, and no election can take power like that away from you. Ever.

 

Don’t play their game, man.Cage Glass Half Full

 

Don’t drink the Kool-Aid.

 

It’s poison.

 

You have everything you need right now; no more, no less.

 

The question is what are you doing to pick the lock on your cage?

 

 

 

Stay

In

Tune.

P.S. I challenge you to read 1 book a month with the subject matter being whatever you feel you need to help you further your artist career.

 

 

 

How To Craft Killer Content And Create Loyal Fans

Content Magic Glass FEATURE

If you’ve read my first book Music Marketing On Twitter: How To Get 1,000 Loyal Fans Every Month In Just 15 Minutes Per Day (whContent 1 Gift From Johnnyich I give out for free just click through if you don’t already have it) you have figured out how to identify your audience, target them, and connect with them on Twitter. You’re growing your audience. The next steps will require you to assemble a content strategy that will begin to deepen these new found relationships enough to monetize in the future.

First off we need to set some realistic expectations here. You Content Datingreally have to think of this like dating.

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, there is a magic equation of content out there that will deeply connect you with your audience to get them interested in you enough to listen to your music.

 

Content Wizard

 Hopefully you and your music are compelling enough to persuade them to buy it, but all this doesn’t happen on the first date.

 

If you’re ready (y’all think you’re creatively ready and your product sounds competitive but most are not yet which is why you need help developing in that department…but I digress), they will respond but it will take more than a couple tweets to make that happen.

 

When you’re dating someone with the intention of beginning a relationship, you can’t expect to close the deal on the first date or the second date if you want it to be worth a damn.

Content Takes Time

Content marketing A.K.A. Permission Marketing takes time.

 

Let’s dive into some ideas to get you started on how to think about crafting YOUR content.

Content is about revealing who you are inside; it’s about your story.

 

Content Whats Your StoryAs a person.

As an artist.

As a musician.

As a fan.

As a music lover.

As a parent.

As a party animal.

As a comedian.

Your dark side.

Your funny side.

Your sad side.Content DNA

Your hopes.

Your dreams.

Your fears.

 

Get the picture?

 

I believe that every artist has a unique story to tell which will make them stand out.

 

This is the DNA to your brand.

 

Content Share Yourself

 

Sadly, most artists won’t be that vulnerable, or take that much time to dig down and bring all this “personality gold” up to the surface.

 

Wait, isn’t that the job description of an artist?

 

 

 

Here’s some soothing thoughts to take the edge off the quest to expose your inner artist soul.

 

Your beehive is out there no matter how crazy, weird, or controversial you are.

 

I love to tell my artists if your music only resonates with pale, young, Asian boys under the age of 14 with freckles, bad acne, and one leg, that club is out there and you can find them.Content Beehive

 

Small as that Universe may be, they ARE out there.

 

If you want to connect with them, you can.

 

So go for it.

 

 

 

Here are some content angles you should be considering:

  • Be interesting.
    • This should be easy if you consider yourself to be an artist. Your talent should be interesting or you need to consider a career change. We have had amazing success exposing our artist Bailey James’ talents on YouTube with Content Who You Areconsistent cover content. This now 13 year old has over 300,000 views and 3,250 subscribers. All completely organic without promotion (that’s about to change now that her debut single and EP are being released)
  • Be funny
  • Be controversial
  • Be an authority
  • Share discoveries and experiences
  • Be Weird
  • Introduce people to new things
  • Fascinate people
  • Be obnoxious
  • Surprise people
  • Be unconventional
  • Foster your uniqueness
  • Be curious

 

Here is a great example of artist content that capitalizes on MANY of these points. The artist is Social Repose. This dude is OUT THERE and I think he’s brilliant. He looks and acts outrageous and obnoxious. He’s unique, he’s humorous, and he’s controversial.

Content Social Repose Tour

 

 

Love him, hate him, be baffled by him, he has encapsulated so many sides of himself on several social media platforms that he is COMPELLING to watch.

 

On his YouTube channel he has a mixture of funny Vine-like videos (that were originally Vines originally and were repurposed to YouTube), cover songs (where he definitely puts HIS artistic interpretation on the track), interesting talent spotlight videos (where he will cover a song in 13 different vocal styles showcasing his vocal [and engineering/auto-tune] skill set), Interactive type videos (where he responds to haters, truth or dare tweets, and prank calls his fans).

 

 

Brilliantly, he has his own original material videos up there as well.

Content_Social_Repose_1

 

Note how some videos are very raw and some videos are more produced. Richie is extremely resourceful here and has conquered social media and found his audience.

 

I promise this kid is making a good living being a creative.

 

You should study this channel.

 

Now, I know what you’re thinking, (insert snotty 5-year-old voice here) “I’m not going to put on a headdress, crazy Goth makeup, flaunt some insect-like wings and act like a moron to get heard.

 

Content_Social_Repose_Vocal_Cover

 

You’re missing the point.

 

See how he worked so many different facets of his personality into his social media content?

 

This is really him!

 

The question to ask yourself is, “what makes you compelling?”

Are you funny?

Are you controversial?

Are you angry about certain things?

Are you elated?

Tell the world and be clever about it.

 

If you’re a killer guitar player, play guitar. Post 15s videos on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube and make them feel something.

 

Get it?Content_Guitar_Player

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s another example. We have a client, who is a very fascinating individual.

 

Patience Reich is a female jazz singer (who is creating a pop record), Physician of internal medicine, Christian, and a humanitarian who regularly travels to Africa and Haiti to help children.

Content Patience 2

 

I look at all her attributes and see a tremendous amount of “Brand DNA” to work with. The content we create involves connecting with people who orbit around her same interests in and outside of music.

 

We put out humanitarian quotes and content. We encourage Patience to post real life images of her work when she is on a mission.

 

Patience regularly posts content of her religious interests like pics of her at church with different people, etc. Never preachy, just inspirational content and to a degree, voyeuristic in that we get to see into her real life occasionally.

 

It’s clear she’s human, just like us.

Content Patience leastmedicines

 

 

 

We post funny, interesting content that revolves around Medical Doctors.

 

 

 

We post content about her favorite jazz artists and we make it attention-grabbing. Here is an example of a jazz music factoid that has had some great engagement.

Content Patience 1

 

 

Of course, we post clips of her live performances to introduce her vocal talent and connect her social media following with her artistry.

 

Patience DILIGENTLY responds to EVERYBODY that engages her and we are growing her account and most importantly, deepening these relationships.

 

 

 

They like herContent Patience 3.

 

They will buy from her.

But it takes time.

 

It takes time to find your voice but you HAVE TO FIND YOUR VOICE or you won’t stick out.

 

I promise if you approach your marketing and/or your artistry half-assed, nobody will care.

 

When you’re writing or performing songs, as an artist, you must hope to connect with your audience on some level, right?

 

You want them to be moved.

 

If they can relate to your story, you win.

 

Just approach your social media tactics in the same manner as you approach songwriting.

 

Bond with them emotionally.

 

Relate to them.

 

Here are 2 great books I would recommend to further your education on this subject.

Content Advanced Music Marketing

 

 

The first book is my new Advanced Music Marketing On Twitter release. This book teaches the next steps on how to cultivate your new audience relationships. It is a logical progression after you have absorbed the first book. There are a ton of tricks, techniques and strategies in this book to show you how we do what we do at Daredevil Production including the tools we use to make us as efficient as possible with our precious time.

 

 

 

Content Cracking The Content Code

 

 

 

The second book is The Content Code: Six Essential Strategies For Igniting Your Content, Your Marketing, And Your Business by Mark W. Schaefer. This book will help you formulate some purpose to your content. It will get your creative juices flowing.

 

 

 

 

 

These books (and any others you may read) can’t tell you EXACTLY what YOU should be doing with YOUR content because you are a unique person

 

You are a unique artist.

 

So you have to attack this with the idea that these books will help you connect some dots, using that big brain of yours, and help you apply solid strategies to your specific personality that will resonate.

 

Stay

In

Tune

 

If you thought this article was helpful, SHARE it please!

 

The Climb 200x200

 

P.S. You might also like my new podcast called The CLIMB with my cohost and hit songwriter Brent Baxter. We discuss the business of songwriting and of course, we talk about marketing music for singers, songwriters, and artists. You can download this podcast for free on iTunes or by clicking through.