Tag Archive for: Blake Shelton

Renaissance Feature 2 MEME 2


We are in dark times, my friends, but the future of Renaissance Tunnel Coldthe music business is a bright one.



The Renaissance is coming.



The music will improve tremendously, believe it or not.


The current market conditions are setting the stage brilliantly.


Renaissance Sterile music

 We are going through a breakdown of quality art and have been for a couple decades. Post-Modern art is derivative and sterile, to put it mildly.



This was happening before the internet and reality TV and now it’s been amplified. Everybody wants to be famous, not even necessarily talented.


I know it doesn’t feel “healthy” in any way, but this is OK! We’ll have a few years of nauseating, obnoxious, never-ending moronic art served up via our social media feeds and flat screen TVs.


Here’s the thing. The market will grow tired of it.


Renaissance Early AdoptersA bunch of you already are, you’re the early adopters.


The masses will follow much later.




Yes, this is how marketing works and has always worked for hundreds of years. You have the early adopters like the people who camp out overnight for the new iPhone.


Then the masses follow in force.


To demonstrate how old this human behavior is (and for the purposes of building faith that we’re on the right track), I’ll share a little historical value bomb.


Renaissance Horsepower



Do you know why we refer to engine power as horsepower?




Back in the day when the automobile was a new technology to the masses, there were throngs of people who refused to ride in cars because they weren’t horses.


“It’ll never stick, it’s a fad, it’s always been horses and always will be.”


Imagine that!


They were too freaked out by the technology change.


Renaissance Buggy Ride



The automakers began talking about the power of the engine in terms that the masses could easily relate to; horsepower.





It stuck. Makes sense now, right?


Our modern-day version of that is when your parents refuse to use computers. Maybe their completely oblivious to social media and complain about it.


Have you heard anyone talk about social media as if it’s a demon to society?


We artists, we do this ourselves.


Renaissance Change



For some reason, we’re not comfortable with change.


But the only thing we can rely on is that the world will constantly change.





So, the artists who can adapt will be the artists that make a living because they will be the artists that we know about.


They figured out how to get to us. How to get to the market.


For example, most artists refuse to utilize the power of YouTube because they can’t get any traction on their own music. They tell themselves the story, “I don’t want to be known as a cover artist” to justify their lack of strategy, understanding, and inability to adapt.


Renaissance The Rolling Stones

But they’ve completely overlooked the fact that the first Beatles record was all covers.



Renaissance Rolling Stones 12x5

They’ve completely overlooked the fact that the first TWO Rolling Stones Records were comprised of all covers (except for 3 songs on 12×5).





They don’t consider some of today’s biggest stars like Bieber, Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton, Melanie Martinez, and Miranda Lambert as “cover artists” but they all started out on YouTube or TV singing covers.


Renaissance Artist Collage



Eventually, the community of artists will let go of their past, unicorn-like delusions of how the music industry used to be (which is typically misguided anyway).


They will also jettison their naive feelings on the way it should be (with everyone getting a blue ribbon for trying and/or for having some talent).




Once this inevitably happens they’ll focus on what’s truly important; the work.


In the immediate future, we consumers will continue to become inundated with crap and clutter from the non-creative, derivative, fame-seeking, bottom-dwellers.


All sterile pop, rock, country, rap, etc. will begin to numb us, the masses, to the point of apathy.




We’ll all stop caring.


This will be scary.


This will naturally spur a new renaissance of significant art.


Important artists will rise up from the ashes.


Renaissance Drowning Clutter Sterile ROCK POP MEME



I say that it will happen naturally because the only thing that will cut through the clutter will be sincerely compelling talent and creativity.






Renaissance Phoenix MEME Important Artists



If you think about it, we’re seeing bits of this prediction already, aren’t we?





Artists like Noah Guthrie and Karmin, for instance. Radio may have helped grow their brand but it certainly didn’t create their brand.


Renaissance Noah Karmin Collage


We lack some super power tastemakers right now. Terrestrial radio used to influence a market, then on a larger scale, MTV (in the early days); these were huge tastemakers.



The DJ’s and VJ’s put their stamp of approval on it and we accepted the offering, didn’t we?


New tastemakers will arise with massive amounts of power.


Some will give way to the proverbial corporate poison apple.

Renaissance MTV Logo



Others will realize, like Snapchat, that authenticity is what sells and will keep them relevant in the marketplace. They’ll shun the apple and stick to the moral, genuine, and effective approach that garnered them the market attention which made them attractive to the corporate world, to begin with.




The renaissance is coming. A renaissance of art, ideas, thinking, and philosophies that will be astonishing to witness.


Renaissance is coming MEME



It’s percolating.




Artists everywhere are just beginning to ask the right questions.


“How can I cut through the clutter?”


“How can I become more compelling?”


“How can I take this artistic piece to another level?”


“How can I really reach my audience?”

“What does my audience feel, want, and demand?”


The Renaissance is coming!


I’m so freaking excited about it!!


No longer do artists need to ask permission to present their work to the masses.


They’re beginning to understand this.


An artist can create something compelling, present it to the market (a large market), and refine it from there.


Any artist can easily FIND THEIR AUDIENCE!


Renaissance Brainwashed




This will be an audience of consumers who are responding to the art because it speaks to them as opposed to being brainwashed into liking it through repetition.





In the future, artists will become brand ambassadors.


They will be valued quite highly because they have something most companies and brands don’t have; PERMISSION.


Renaissance Gold PERMISSION MEME

Permission being defined as the ability to reach a mass of people who are looking forward to their next communication from the artist.



Imagine an artist with 1 million email addresses, phone numbers, and/or device ID’s.


Picture an artist with that kind of reach who understands how to create compelling content, aside from their music, that is relevant and personal to the 1 million followers.


Renaissance 1 million MEME

Envision those 1 million followers not tolerating the interruptions, but ANTICIPATING whatever content is coming from said artist.




Can you see it?


I can.


Brands will bow at the feet of artists who have crafted a unique relationship with their fans because it’s the only way to get through anymore.


Renaissance Bow At The Feet


Artists will be the pied pipers, the cult leaders, the powerfully benevolent managers of a loyal following who will listen intently.




It’s not about, “I have 1 million contacts”, anymore. It’s going to be about, “I have 1 million relationships.”


Artists, they will pay to align their brand with yours.


They will pay dearly to be associated with your cool, with your hipness, and with your energy.


You have compelling art.


Renaissance Next Stop The Future


Get that compelling art in front of people who are wanting to consume it.



The rest will take care of itself.


I promise.














If you found value in this article, please SHARE and COMMENT below.

Song Not Enough

Good Songs are not enough.

I received a tremendous response to my last article entitled “Your Biggest Mistake Ever” (thank you). It seems everyone is starting to catch on to the importance of marketing. Songwriters (hopefully) have great songs but struggle with getting attention and getting them monetized and I want to thank those of you who asked me to write about some strategies on how to advance a songwriting career using marketing techniques.

Songs Cartoon Man

How does one influence the buying decision of someone looking for songs to cut?


The answer is presentation and relationships.


I have some ideas.


Songs B2b B2CRight off the bat, if you aspire to be a songwriter and not an artist then your business model is B2B not B2C. Meaning you want to sell your songs to people who will make recordings that generate revenue as opposed to creating the actual recording that will generate revenue.

Get it?

B2B = Business to Business.

B2C = Business to Consumer.



Trust me when I tell you that your game plan has to be ALL about relationships. The more relationships you have, the more opportunities you create for yourself. Songs Bonds


Relationships in the entertainment industry are everything and songwriting is no different.


Songs 2 Turtle Doves


You need relationships with other songwriters and up and coming artists. These relationships will naturally lead to connections with producers, A&R execs, publishers, song pluggers etc.



Songs Network Computer Key


Did you ever notice that when Adam Sandler makes a movie it’s always got the same cast? Those people are his friends.Songs Sandler




Songs NigelDid you ever notice that whenever Christopher Guest makes a movie (“This is Spinal Tap”, “Waiting for Guffman”, “Best in Show”) the cast is almost exactly the same? Those people are his friends.


Could Sandler and Guest find superior talent with other actors and comedians in their industry?  Sure, they’re big stars, their movies make money, and they can get anyone they want.

I happen to love their casting choices, but there is always someone more talented or someone with bigger and better marquis value, right?

Why stick with the same old, same old when you can get this year’s “Johnny Hot Sausage”?

They make business decisions to write and cast their movies based on relationships first.


Is it surprising that Ashley Monroe is singing a duet with Blake Shelton when you find out she is friends with Miranda Lambert?Songs Ashley Monroe

Is it surprising that Ashley Monroe co-wrote a couple Miranda Lambert songs like “Me and Your Cigarettes” and “Heart Like Mine”?


Did you know that Cole Swindell was frat buddies with Luke Bryan?

Is it surprising that Cole Swindell co-wrote a ton of Luke Bryan hits?


Are you picking up what I’m putting down?

Good, so we’ve established that while you certainly need great songs, success as a songwriter requires relationships.

Great songs are simply not enough.

Songs How picOk, so HOW do you create relationships?


My first (and very obvious) thought is a Sam Kinison’s advice to end world hunger, tell the hungry to “GO WHERE THE FOOD IS!”


Move to where there are a ton of songwriters. The more songwriters and artists, the more opportunities, right? It’s a numbers game so stopSongs 1940 crowds having your dream build up and get crushed on 1 opportunity.


You will require many.


If you can’t move to an artist-centric city like Nashville, New York, or Los Angeles then you can certainly visit from time to time and make it worth your while; have a strategy for targeting and creating relationships.


Songs LocationI know, I know, that’s not possible for all of you to physically move. Let’s explore some other ideas.


Let’s tackle the big question, what if another songwriter, publisher, producer, or artist says “YES”?



Do you have a solid professional representation of your songs that demonstrates your talent or will you be presenting your product with excuses and disclaimers about the quality of songwriting and/or recording?Songs No Throwing Garbage

Disclaimers suck.


Songs Cars Covered in IvyThink about the concept of disclaimers in a different light. Let’s say you go to purchase a car and you ask the person selling the car if it works. They tell you the car looks great but it needs a new engine, tires, A/C, and transmission because they never took care of it and they had a bunch of REALLY GOOD reasons why they couldn’t afford the time and/or money to do it.


Would you buy the car?

Would you care about the reasons why it didn’t work or would you simply focus on the fact that the damn car doesn’t run?

Nope. This is business, man, that car needs to get you reliably from point A to point B.

You don’t have time for nonsense when it comes to your car, do you?

Disclaimers about your product, i.e. the song or the recording, are UNPROFESSIONAL.

Professionals don’t have time for nonsense from non-professionals.

Make sure you have at least a couple competitive recordings of your very best songs so you can start a possible relationship off proudly, without a disclaimer.Songs Better


Get down to business with your presentation. Consumers want to be wooed and transported to your artistic world, business people need to hear what you wrote immediately so they can make decisions.


Remember, you’re selling the lyric, melody, and vibe of the song NOT the recording. In short, have a demo edit just for B2B presentations, no fat, just meat; similar to a movie director’s artistic cut vs. the distributed version of the film.

Once you have the tools you need to begin a professional relationship, I would focus on how to create a symbiotic relationship.

Symbiotic means both parties add value to the relationship.

One sided relationships never last, ever, think about it.


One sided professional relationships are impossible to start when it’s obvious that they are one sided. (The ONLY time one sided relationships have a chance is when they are a valued relationship for other reasons, but I digress)



In plain English, the big hit songwriters are not going to be beneficial to you immediately so I wouldn’t waste time and energy treating them like a “make or break” priority in your career.


Songs Ying Yank

This strategy will only render negative results which creates frustration and will leave you second-guessing yourself.


Find relationships within your “class” or “generation”. In this metaphor “class” and “generation” have nothing to do with age and everything to do with a measurable spot on an artistic journey.


Find your beehive.


Songs Beehive in a Tree

Don’t ignore or lament your place on the artistic journey, honor it.

It’ll make you better.

It’ll make you honest.

It’ll make you work.Songs Work For It


It’ll make for better songs.


If you’re really writing hit songs, believe me, you will attract attention from the appropriate people.

If you are somewhere on your way to writing hit songs, believe me, you will attract the appropriate people.


Songs Sandbox


Focus on finding songwriters who are willing to play in the sandbox with you, first; expand from there. This strategy will render immediate results that will add fuel to your fire rather than snuff it out.

Start targeting songwriters for co-writes.



If you’re in a big city, find out where the songwriters hang out and go there.


Participate in writer’s nights, open mic nights, go to artist shows, etc.


I would also be looking to target songwriters online.  There are HUNDREDS of songwriter communities on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.

The best way to create any relationship is to do something for them rather than asking them to do something for you.Songs Pepper Chef


What could you do for a songwriter you would like to work with? What are you good at? There is literally no better relationship builder than one person doing something for another person expecting nothing in return.


Expect nothing in return.


Songs GiftTime is something we all have and it’s the best gift anyone could give. How could you offer up your time to benefit someone you would like to create a relationship with?

Daredevil Production creates regular, long lasting relationships with all the interns we work with.  They offer their valuable time in exchange for knowledge and a course credit.

This means the world to me. I NEED it.

Get it?


What do other songwriters need?

Everyone needs gas money, grocery money, musical equipment, gift cards, etc.Songs Good At

What if you went online to a songwriting community and offered up a simple contest? For instance, if you are a lyricist you would post up your best lyric and offer a $25 gift card to songwriter who can write the best melody to it.




Get weird.


That’s a nice little artistic challenge with a possible immediate payoff.

You just created a relationship with a writer who possesses a clear talent to complete your artistic circle and it only cost you $25.


Maybe a songwriter needs a service or skill outside of the music business that you can offer up.

Maybe they need web design, logo design, construction work, legal help, accounting advice, automotive maintenance, recording time in your home studio, etc.


What do you have that is of value?


Quit focusing on one song. This will limit your responses and become disappointing. Maybe your one song is a smash hit song but it isn’t trending right now.Songs Attention

For instance, in the 90’s ballads were huge, ballads were trending. Now they are not in style. So if you’re emotionally pinning your hopes and dreams to a ballad in today’s market you’re going to get a ton of rejection.

Nobody is buying ballads today, regardless of the quality, like nobody is buying hamburgers for their vegan restaurants.



Quit focusing on getting ROI on 1 song or a limited amount of songs. If you require instant return on your investment to believe the journey is worth it, professional songwriting and the entertainment industry is not your bag, baby.

Songs Austin Powers




The more you write, the better you get, the more relationships you create and/or deepen.

The more you write the more product you have to monetize when you do get a big break with your first cut and/or single.



The more you write the bigger your body of work becomes which makes you look more professional.


Songs Twisted NailThink about it this way, if you were buying a house would you trust the carpenter who’s built 100 houses or the new guy who has big dreams and no reputation?



One final way I can think of (at the moment) is to do some business.

  • Organizations like NSAI are a great place to run into other songwriters.Songs SWAMB
  • PAY for mentorships with hit songwriters. You will learn, you will improve, and you will develop relationships, you write better songs.
  • Songwriter Conferences like
    • SongwritingandMusicBusiness.com are FANTASTIC events to meet other writers, industry pros, network, and get great feedback/advice on how to navigate the songwriting business.
    • Tin Pan Alley
    • Here’s a Music Connection guide to songwriter conferences.








If you like this post, please SHARE it and/or LEAVE A COMMENT thank you!

[ois skin=”Bottom Post”]