What are you thankful for the music in your life??
I am thankful for dreams and people that come into my life on the journey. The co-writers that write with me and we want to have success for the songs and our lives. The publishers that open their doors to hear my songs and relationships built over the years. The mentors that support me with words and stories of encouragement and answer the questions over the years.
The studios that have worked with me over the years to make those guitar/vocals come to life! The artists that have recorded my songs, done videos, put their heart and soul into the song. I sometimes have watched those independent artists with their dreams, take the time to record, do the videos, invest their time and money – on a song I co-wrote. Those events help keep me on the journey.
Thankful for the sponsors and subscribers of the Nashville Muse and my other sites in the business.
Thankful to family and friends that encourage me, listen to demos, help me in many ways with their prayers and kind words. The Music Row Community that encourages songwriters and NSAI that makes a difference in songwriters lives have been a big help over the many years of the songwriting journey.The friends and relationships built in the past years that help keep me motivated and encouraged to keep writing and pitching the songs.
Thankful for The Goals and Dreams I have to finish 2013 strong, to make 2014 the greatest year of the music journey, with goals and dreams coming true for my songs.
I hope you have had a good 2013, will stay positive and keep believing and working on your journey. Research those who have had success and learn from them. How long did they stay on the journey – not giving up? I read recently that one of the hottest songwriters in the past year, has been in Nashville for 15 years and is now seeing the success! Whatever it takes – let’s work together to make 2013 our best – finish strong and positive, and plan our work and work our plans for 2014.
THANKS to YOU for being part of my journey! Love and Blessings to You and Your Dreams and Goals!
NSAI’s Bart Herbison and hit songwriters discuss the “Story Behind the Song” in the Tennessean every week. This is a great opportunity to learn about the songwriters, how they came up with the ideas for the songs, the co-writing session, how the song got cut and the inside story about the songwriter – with their journey to success with their songwriting.
The newest one features Marty Dodson, a Nashville native and how his song went from the idea stage, his data base that he uses to file his ideas, to the co-writing session with Jim Collins, the song recorded by George Strait and George played songs on an upcoming album for Kenny Chesney and making it a hit song.
Go to the site for the interview and other great interviews for the Story Behind the Song! Be inspired watching the interviews! Perhaps tell the songwriters and Bart you enjoyed the interview when you see them in the future!
We look forward to working with you at the 2013 CMA Awards!
We hope this letter answers the majority of your questions, so read it carefully for vital details.
ALL Mosh Fillers will be wristbanded on Friday, Nov 1st, 5:30p, AND Wed, Nov 6th, 9a, at the 6th Ave Entrance of Bridgestone Arena as long as they last- no exceptions. Report to the usual 6th Ave Black Awning Entrance where wristbands are being issued. Be patient- THERE ARE NO BOWL FILLER SEATS AVAILABLE THIS YEAR- ONLY MOSH.
Your trusted guests will be allowed to participate while the wristband supply lasts, but YOU will be responsible for your guest and their actions. Thank you for being FLEXIBLE & PATIENT!!
You will be placed in A STANDING MOSH PIT around a stage as an important mosh filler. From there, you will enjoy an amazing FREE experience as part of the largest, most successful award show on television. It airs live on ABC from 7-10p CST on Wednesday, November 6th.
The activity in the back of the house takes place throughout the show. This is a live TV event so safety, speed, and efficiency are critical. Be attentive to all staff- Things move quickly and we appreciate your adding to the show with your patient and flexible cooperation at all times.
Artists do not want to converse with us, and WILL report a problem or an aggressive fan to CMA, show staff or me. Artists will appear on camera at any time, so it’s important that they are allowed to be attentive to the show and stage managers. Remember, this is fun for us, but they are
working. We expect your utmost professionalism in this area and thank you in advance for your cooperation. Please get my attention if you have any problems with this during the show.
REPORT ANY VIOLATION OF BEHAVIOR THAT YOU SEE IMMEDIATELY TO ME OR OUR STAFF!
Men – Upscale dressy concert attire; no short sleeves, jeans, hats, or t-shirts.
Women – Upscale dressy concert attire; no overly-exposed skin, with makeup and hair ready. For safety and speed, NO heels or platform shoes over 2 1/2 inches high. Ballerina Flats are encouraged- shoes
won’t show and you’ll be comfortable when it’s time to move quickly. No hats, sheer clothing, low necklines or short skirts are allowed. Due to heightened security, a SMALL evening wristlet-sized handbag is the ONLY type of bag of any kind a mosh filler is allowed to bring in.
***No other handbag larger than a small evening purse will be admitted. *** You may be on camera many times during the course of the evening, so NO gum or waving or gesturing to the camera- just ignore it like a professional actor does.
Wednesday, Nov 6th, 2013, by 5:30pm.
Please arrive at the usual Bridgestone Arena entrance at 6th & Broadway, dressed for the show. Allow extra time due for rush hour traffic, parking, walking, and security check-ins around the Bridgestone Arena. No food or beverages will be served, so plan accordingly.
PARKING and ENTRANCE:
Self-park where possible. Report to 6th Ave, across from the First Baptist Church parking lot, where you will join the “Bag” or “No Bag” line. Doors close at 7pm.
The “Bag” line requires a Security Bag Check before entering. Those without a mini-purse will enter through the “No Bag” line, which enters the building BEFORE the “Bag” line enters.
If you bring a handbag larger than a small evening purse or fail to meet the above wardrobe requirements, you will NOT be admitted. Security will check all audience that enters.
There is NO secure place to leave coats or umbrellas, and we ask that you try not to bring them. If the weather is inclimate, we will move you inside the stairwell as quickly as possible. Should you choose to bring an umbrella, you have to leave it in the 6th Ave stairwell, and can be reclaimed after the show if it’s still there. Do NOT bring cameras, camera bags, large purses or binoculars.
OTHER IMPORTANT REMINDERS:
NO professional long-lens cameras, video cameras, or any type of professional recording devices are allowed. Cell phones must be placed on silent and are STRICTLY prohibited while in the Bridgestone We Are Nashvillena and strictly enforced. Emergency calls should be taken in the concourses only.
NO cell phone use whatsoever on the arena floor, except during commercial breaks- this will be strictly enforced.
Absolutely no requests for autographs or photos from Talent or the submission of business cards or promotional materials of any type to the artists is allowed at ANY time, even when the show is over.
Thanks again for your participation!! – Enjoy the show!
Suzzane Skinner, Audience Producer
“Unwritten Rules to Successful Networking In The Music Business”
By Doak Turner
Unwritten Rules to Successful Networking In The Music Business – you get invited to a party in the music business, or a conference/workshop, a #1 party or other music industry function. You want to do the right things at these events, but what are they?
- Research the people that will be at the event in advance – if it is a #1 party, find out who are the writers and research the writers and publishers to learn a little about them in advance.
- Arrive on time for the event – to make the most of the networking
- BE POSITIVE – before going into the event – whatever happened earlier in the day – let It Go as you want to be positive and smiling at the event. We have all had our songs rejected, had a tough day for one reason or another, however this is the time to be a positive energy person at the event.
- They usually serve beverages at the events – TIP – always get a napkin and wrap it around the beverages as the cups and glasses sweat. When you are shaking hands – you do not want the wet hands from the beverage to shake with do you? (smile).
- When meeting someone – always ask about THEM. The Who What Where When questions to get them talking. Where are you from, How long have you been in town, What do you do in the business, etc.
- If you are Shy – find someone that looks shy – go talk with them as they are probably like you, looking for someone to talk with, but perhaps do not know many people at the event and will be glad you reached out to them.
- BUSINESS CARDS – now that you have met someone, decide to exchange business cards – be prepared! I have MY business cards in my left pocket and everyone else’s cards go in my right pocket. That prevents the mix up, pulling out someone else’s card to give away. YOUR CARD should have – your name, phone number, e-mail. Website. Make sure –print is big enough to be easy to read! Have you business cards with you at all times!!
- Creative places to Network – in Nashville, I recommend you have your mail delivered to the Acklen Avenue Post Office – over in Hillsboro Village, at the end of Music Row. 98% of the music business get their mail at that post office! You will meet people from all areas of the music business at the post office. Perhaps strike up conversations, sometimes go around the corner to a restaurant or coffee shop to the start of a business relationship and friendship from meeting them at the Acklen Avenue Post Office.
- Banks – best to network – Regions Bank at the Roundabout Circle – Lisa Harless and her crew are great to work with and you run into music business professionals at the banks. If you bank at SunTrust Bank, they have a branch on 17th Avenue – use that one as you run into professionals in the music business at that branch. Avenue Bank has 4 locations in town, one is in the Cummins Station building and you can run into music business people at that location and the others. Meet with your banker in the music business and develop a relationship with them – they know everyone and can help you tremendously in Nashville!
- Get invovled in the community – find something you like to do outside of the music business and get invovled – volunteer or find events in the music business such as benefits, visit writer rounds and meet other songwriters and like minded people to network and build relationships.
- Create Events – invite songwriters and music people to your home for cookouts and play songs. If you live in an apartment or house is too small – perhaps find a community center or other location and host writer rounds at the locations. Hosting the events gets your name out in the community, you make new friends and providing a service to people in the music industry.
- WHAT NOT TO DO at Networking Events! Do not start a conversation telling that person everything about you! We have two ears and one mouth for a reason! Do not walk up to a hit songwriter, give them your CD and tell them you should co-write a song together!
- DO NOT ask for Photos with the pros or autographs. – This makes you look like a fan instead of someone in the music business. Be a songwriter or whatever you do, not a fan!
- When meeting hit songwriters – perhaps tell them you enjoyed their songs, if a couple were inspiring to you, mention that fact, thank them for writing the song, and that you will see them again around town. If they ask about you, tell them in about 12 seconds – you are a writer, perhaps new to town or visiting and love the music business and Nashville. Again, do not tie them up in conversation at an event or at a songwriters round.
- Your Peers – build friendships and business relationships over time in the music business with your peers – those on your level and work with each other to improve your craft.
- Have FUN on your journey! Learn every day!
For more information on this and other topics for your songwriting and artist journey, contact Doak at firstname.lastname@example.org
“When I get married,” Lindsey says, “they’ll be my bridesmaids”!
The following was in Bob Lefsetz column, September 17th, 2013. If you would like to subscribe to the LefsetzLetter, which is a blog that 1,000′s in the industry reads, go to
Below is from the songwriter of Grand Funk Railroad classic song, “Some Kind Of Wonderful”:
I would like to share a story with you, and fans, of how the phrase some kind of wonderful, came to be a song. I still remember that moment as if it was yesterday. My band, the Soul Brothers Six, had signed a recording contract with a small independent record label in Philadelphia that was owned by Walter Rayfield. We met Walter at a club in Rochester, New York where we played every weekend. He convinced us to sign a management contract, plus a recording contract with him, and invited our group to come to Philly to record.
The day we were leaving for Philadelphia, I stopped by the apartment of the girl I was dating, to say goodby. Her name was Ann White. She had packed me a lunch in a brown paper bag. We stood there in silence for a moment just looking at each other. I knew this was the last time I would see her, I knew she wanted more from me than I could give her, but she understood. She knew I had dreams that nothing could get in the way of. I gave her a hug, and we kissed. I looked at her and said, you are some kind of wonderful, I’m gonna write a song about you.
This was around 6am, I turned and walked towards the old 1960 Ford we had bought for the trip that was eaten up by rust. You could see the highway through the rusted out holes in the floor. After about four hours into the trip, I ate the sandwich Ann had prepared for me. After I finished the sandwich, I began writing the lyrics to some kind of wonderful on the bag she had packed my lunch in.
I don’t need a whole lots of money, I don’t need a big fine car, I’ve got everything that a man could want, I’ve got more, than I could ask for.
This is the reason for those first three lines. The first line was because at that moment, money could not make me feel the way I was feeling. Although I did not want a relationship with Ann, I did have feelings for her. This was something that money could not buy.
Regarding the big fine car, I knew I could be just as happy with her in the old rusted out Ford,as I would be in a brand new car because I would have everything that I could hope for. That’s how she made me feel.
Some Kind Of Wonderful was written in less than a half hour, which included the melody, the arrangement of all the music, which included the famous bass line that have been featured in many songs over the years and as the saying goes, the rest is history.
Because of the many turn of events that have happened in my life, I have written my autobiography. The Soul Brother’s Six have a story that need to be told also. I am sure that one day, our story will be made into a movie.
John Ellison A photo of the song writer and Mark Farner of Grand Funk Railroad is pic.twitter.com/Mvd8MRLeoi
Below is a press release from Essential Broadcast – a great PR firm in Nashville. Check out what these artists put together to give back to their home communities! They make a difference to that community, structure ways to deliver music equipment to schools, partner up with local companies, bring their friends in the music business from Nashville to go to Kentucky for the event!
All of these artists probably gain thousands of fans that attend the show, go to the sites, support that artists and also the local cause in the community. People from the local community attend the events, are made aware of the needs of the community and I bet several local people will be on board year round to make a difference for the cause in the community.
WHAT CAN YOU DO to give back as artists in your community? What event can you host to make a difference and it also brands you in the community, those that help you – perhaps put together a concert and other events that bring awareness to the cause in your community. IF you live in Nashville, could you go back to your hometown as Chad and David and their friends are doing with the concert and ATV ride in the community? What cause are you passionate about, what can YOU DO to give back as Halfway To Hazard are doing along with all their friends.
BRAINSTORM, put together your team to make a difference and I bet you also make new fans, change lives and learn new power of music that you have never been able to see without the giving back in your community!
Let me know your thoughts!
Here are some great performance tips from vocal coach Judy Rodman and her, All Things Vocal blog!
Why say anything during a singing performance? It should be a strategy to endear and connect an artist to the audience. Yet one of the biggest turn-offs I see in amateur performers is when they do a long spoken introduction to the first song of their set! The crowd may politely listen, but trust me, you’ve shot yourself in the foot before you’ve sung your first word.
Great performers and major artists tend to start a show by plunging right into a riveting opening song. They may say hello and wave or something over the musical intro, but they make sure to earn the interest of the audience before they do any lengthy stage talking.
As with most of life, it’s best to give before you expect to get. Give your music, get their attention, then offer a story about a song when it would add something to the show… but only when you can feel the audience in the palm of your hand. And… don’t mess up a good thing by talking too long even then.
Learn to read the crowd. Are they starting to drift? Do you need to go straight into another song or do you need to break things up with some storytelling about how the next song came to be or why you chose it? Are you part of a multi-artist event where the last thing everyone wants to hear is a long talking spiel about… anything!? Or do you really need to allow the audience a more intimate connection with you in a short, authentic, in-the-moment chat?
Raise your antennas, become aware of what the audience wants from you. Do it enough and you’ll intuitively know the best places to talk during your shows. Yes, sometimes it’s magic to be spontaneous, but mark probable stage talk spots on your set list. It’s a very a good idea to pre-plan so you have a more succinct idea of what to say instead of going on and on (and on and on)…
Don’t get me wrong… stage talk well done can connect you with an audience at a deeper level. But leave them wanting more… for goodness sake don’t leaven them wanting less!
I’d love to hear from you… do you have a positive or negative experience with stage talk as either performer or audience member?
Right on time at 7:00 Dustin Lynch opened the evening with his :30 minute set with hits that included a tractor sound effect to start his hit, “She Cranks My Tractor” and even went back in time to play the David Lee Murphy song, “Dust On The Bottle” and ended with his song, “Cowboys and Angels”.
Little Big Town hit the stage full of energy that never stopped with their hits and some of the best vocals and harmonies ever heard on a stage – “Your Side of the Bed”, Pontoon”, “Boondocks” – they had the crowd standing and clapping from the first song. They performed Fleetwood Mac’s, “The Chain” – a perfect cover song for those tight harmonies.
Karen Fairchild continued her “Stevie Nicks” image for the next song, “Tornado” with a fan blowing on her at center stage as she wore a black leather duster with fringes blowing as she captivated the audience with the passion of the song.
Little Big Town engages with the fans, shaking as many hands and smiling with the fans up front in the “pit” section of the arena as well as I’ve ever seen a band perform in concert.
Keith Urban walked on stge playing banjo as one by one his band members Brian Nutter, Jerry Flowers, Danny Rader and Chris McHugh joined him to start “Long Hot Summer” and the screen behind the band with five panels lit up with images of Keith. “Sweet Thing” followed with about an eight minute version of the song.
Talk about fan engagement – Keith read a sign during his first talk with the audience that said, “This is my first concert, come and see me” and Keith went over and gave the fan a hug! Keith later went to the stage back near the lawn seats and asked, “Who has the best seats now” as he went into four songs including the Who’s “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and played “Days Go By” then shared the spotlight as bass player, Jerry Flowers did a verse of Adelle’s “Rumor Has It” before heading back to the main stage.
“You’ll Think Of Me” with just Keith sitting on a riser on the stage had the crowd singing and he went into the new song, “I Just Want A Little Bit Of Everything” with a disco ball shining on the stage.
Keith has Little Big Town help with the harmonies on “”You’re Gonna Fly” and had Dustin Lynch come out and sign with him on, “Kiss A Girl”,
During “I Wanna Love Somebody” with the crowd singing the first verse, Keith had a camera on the end of his guitar staring down the fretboard with ultra up close of his fingers hitting those notes – looking great on the big screens!
After a high energy of the 90 minute set, the encore included Keith on Piano “Tonight I Wanna Cry” and guitar player, Brian Nutter getting the spotlight for a verse of Bruno Mars, “Locked Out Of Heaven” and Keith going back into the crowd to the stage on the lawn for “You Look Good In My Shirt” to pull out a Sharpie, sign the guitar and give away the guitar to a fan that will remember the night forever!
After the final song, the bows to the crowd, the band walked off stage and Keith is still there, shaking hands, signing a couple autographs, smiling, having a girl probably about five years old being brought to him for a hug at stage right, high fiving his way across the stage with the fans to reaching out for a boy probably ten years old and shaking the kids hand with a smile and saying something to him – all part of showing what a love Keith has for performing, the fans and the opportunity to live his dream.
Go see this tour and if you are an artist – watch the interaction, watch the band giving 100%, see how Keith shares the spotlight with the members and their interaction with Keith and the crowd and passion for performing to the fans!
I just read the book Making Rumours – The Inside Story of the Classic Fleetwood Mac Album bu Ken Caillat with Steven Stiefel.
Everyone in the music industry may enjoy the book of the inside of making Fleetwood Mac’s classic 1977 album that topped the Billboard 200 for thirty-one weeks and won the Album of the Year Grammy Award.
The first day in the studio was January 28th, 1976 at The Record Plant in Sausalito, California and the album, Rumours was released February 4th, 1977. According to Ken, you hear a song one way with one instrument, and then you add another, and the whole vibe of the song changes. That’s a major reason it took so long to make Rumours. They kept looking for the perfect part to complete each instrument in the songs.
More recently, Rolling Stone named it the 25th Greatest album of all time! The alcolades are all earned for the album.
Ken Caillat, the album’s co-producer, tells the stories of what really went into making Rumours from the endless partying and relationship dramas to the creative struggles to write and record, “You Make Lovin’ Fun”, “Don’t Stop”, “Go Your Own Way”, “The Chain” and other awesome tracks on the album.
The album took a year to make from the first to the last days in the studio and the stories – Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham.s screaming match while recording, “You Make Lovin’ Fun” and how the band coped with the instant success ( after ten albums over the years that were not successes as we know them), how the master tape disintegrated, the attention paid to the tiniest elements of the songs. from Lindsey playing a chair to Mick breaking glass, to working hard and endless hours to get the songs in the form that we know them.
The bands relationships during that year, with each other and outside the band, finding out certain songs were about band members that created the conflict that ended up resulting in the timeless album.Three couples in the band were destroyed. Yet listening to the album, countless others fell in love. By vanquishing, ignoring and burning through personal traedies and turmoil, sacrificing the connections that each band member lost, the members of Fleetwood Mac created one of the greatest rock-and-roll albums in history.
Highlights include time signatures of exactly where on certain songs that you hear the particular parts described in the songs. Examples such as, “Gold Dust Woman” running the song through the phaser, listen to the effects at : 0:09, 0:25 seconds and again at 0:28 seconds, You’ll hear exactly what the mighty phaser does in the song.
If you have not listened to Rumours in a while – you will several times while reading the book and the album will run through your head over and over ! The book includes 80 photos of making the album and those involved in the masterpiece.
I went to iTunes today and bought the “Super Deluxe” version of Rumours which has several song demos that Ken spoke about in the book. Interesting of how the songs sounded as they kept re-writing and playing and trying new sounds to make the songs as we know them on the album and a couple of the songs they recorded for the album that were on later albums instead of making the cut for Rumours.
Ken Caillet, co-produced Fleetwood Mac’s classic 1977 album, Rumors for which he won a Grammy Award for Album of the Year, as well as Tusk, Mirage, Live and The Chain box set. He’s also the father of Grammy-winning singer Colbie Caillat and he produced her #1 album, Breakthrough. Read how Ken’s life changed with the success of the album.
The Nashville Muse and Music Starts Here.org are working to bring Ken to Nashville this fall for an interview and book signing and workshops on Music Row. Stay tuned for more details. In the meantime – read the book!