Tag Archives: help

The Art Of Finding What You’re Looking For

abstract-summer-background_MkgLu3u_Remember the U2 song I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For?

Sorry Bono, we’re all in your boat too.

I spent my youth and young adulthood looking for something. I (sort of) knew what it was, yet it remained a mystery at the same time. At various intervals I thought I’d finally found it and could relax. The hunt was over, finally. A short time later, however, it became clear that only a piece of what I was looking for had been found, and not the whole thing. So the hunt began again.

Do you think I’m talking about love? In a way I am, but not the romantic kind (that’s a whole OTHER story for a later time).

I was searching for fulfillment, or purpose. It’s what we’re all on a quest for, partially one reason why we’re artists, creative people and/or individuals who get get categorized as entrepreneurs because we venture into unknowns often without a clear map of what’s in front of us.

Sound familiar?

There was a time I thought I’d found fulfillment by way of occupation. I wanted to be on the radio and had achieved that by the age of 16, working as a DJ at a station in Alvin, Tx (89.7 KACC) while in high school. A decade later I was running a public radio station (KACU in Abilene) and had created a music program (The Appetizer Radio Show) that would eventually be picked up on other radio stations across the country (through syndication). I got a piece of fulfillment in each of these capacities, a degree of purpose, but not the whole thing I was searching for.

Changing jobs and industries at the age of 31 after 15 years in the same industry altered the purpose card quite a bit. Suddenly I was in a new world with many new things to learn. I had transitioned into the realm of infinity, aka online marketing. I still do a little work in this industry, but have since transitioned yet again.

I say all of this for a little context. I’m a pretty consistent person who is big on commitments and not jumping from one thing to the next every so often. After graduation from college in 2004, I held a job with the same organization for nearly a decade. I’m good at sticking with a job. However, after switching to marketing in 2013, I quickly learned that your career path and your purpose in life are a rough marriage. They’re linked, yes indeed. But they aren’t always the same thing.

I’ve since shifted the job stuff again, now more in the self-employed sector of the job market. It’s some of the most fulfilling work I’ve ever done. But that’s not the point. The point is, in each shift, I found a different piece of the fulfillment I was searching for, and made an interesting discovery in the process:

The art of finding what you’re looking for is an evolutionary process that begins at birth and ends at death.

The idea that you reach a destination in your lifetime where you are completely fulfilled with nothing else to aspire to is missing the mark. The pursuit itself is the purpose.

Goal setting is a piece of my life, as it is yours. There are certain things I’ve set out to achieve early in life  that I’m still chasing after. Since I’m still pursuing them, and “success” as I envision it hasn’t happened yet in a gigantic capacity, means there are some more pieces I’ve yet to acquire. So the hunt continues.

At different stages of this journey, I’ve had to learn some powerful lessons, and seek help from people with experience in things I know not of. These stages are necessary in reaching the next fulfillment milestone.

One thing I used to wish was available for me to gain assistance was a How-To guide for radio program creation and development. I spent a few years scouring every online and brick/mortar book store for a book or blog on how to take an existing program and get it carried on stations across the country. When I was looking for this, it didn’t exist. Today, there are millions of artists and entrepreneurs just like you, trying to find the same answers. How do you get your work accepted by other people, people you don’t know, so that you can grow your platform?

I learned from trial and error, risk and reward, mistakes and successes what worked and what didn’t to get The Appetizer Radio Show syndicated. I used my time, energy, and limited financial resources along with networking and relationship building to make it happen. I wanted someone to show me how and instead I found my own path.

Now I know the reason for this: part of my fulfillment in life is teaching others how to do things. There was no teacher for me in this way so I was given a way to learn something that I could later teach others. Now I can teach you how to do exactly what I did. All it takes is a commitment to process, a mind willing to learn, and just a little money.

Want to learn the art of finding what you’re looking for? Reach me directly below and let’s talk about how you can find your next piece of fulfillment with your project.

Quality Issue With Radio And Music

Radio Mic Old FashionedToday I’m going to give you Keys To The Having Remarkable Sound.

Radio wants good sound. I’m going to reiterate that a bit here but dive deeper into the elements of that sound beyond just the production. But production is where we start.

Sound quality is the number 1 requirement for station managers and program directors in both realms of radio (the commercial side as well as the public/community/web radio avenues).

When big time mainstream artists release “demo” tracks, notice the amount of production work that has been done to the quality so that it’s “radio friendly.” There are exceptions to this rule, and some stations don’t hold to the sound quality requirement due to their broadcast signal, but for the most part quality is king here.

It’s audio only, therefore the sound quality having the top criteria makes sense.Where this applies to you is everything you post on your website, social platforms, and music outlets is a reflection of your brand.

Radio has a QUALITY rule, and you should too.

Put music out to your fans that is of high quality, preferably that has been worked through some form of studio recording and given a little tweaking on the EQ for the best quality.

Remember, some of these recordings and songs could be the first impression you make with a potential fan. You want that first impression to be positive, so give them a reason to come back. Plus, you want the music you link to or include with your Press Kit to be the best reflection of your band/brand that it can be.

Can you still release a demo version of a song or maybe even a video of a new tune you’re working on to your fans? Yes, of course.

There are exceptions to nearly every rule out there, and there are times when a short demo recording could be released to get a feel for what your Super-Fans think. But be careful with how you do that, and don’t make releasing unfinished songs as demos a part of your music release strategy for everything you do.

What if you’re cash-strapped, how can you get a high quality recording of your music made to post to your Soundcloud page? Wouldn’t it be better to release something so you have a representation of your sound?

Good question. This is the reason (excuse) many artists make for putting lesser-quality music on their site or sending to stations. It’s a bad idea.

[Gut Check]  The reason for that has a lot more to do with what stage of the music process you’re on. This may sound harsh, but it’s the truth. From the perspective of a decision-maker for programming, you need to have experience doing this for a little while to be taken seriously, especially when it comes to releasing music for distribution.

If you’re using Reverbnation or Facebook page to get more fans, you can do that and still have a good quality recording. There are ways to get a strong quality recording of your music without having to spend thousands of dollars in a big studio. If you need help doing this, just ask me. The key point though is that you should make quality of recording a big priority for your music.

Quality is a branding avenue in music

As you prepare to post your brand to the world, make sure you are putting representations of yourself that truly reflect the high quality of art that you create. You don’t have to promote every single one of your songs, or promote each new one.
Make sure the music you are publishing for people to see is your best work, and make sure you’re playing these songs at shows. Don’t promote music to radio that you aren’t playing live in your gigs. That won’t serve your best efforts.

3 Paths Of Help For Songwriters

The music industry is ever changing for emerging songwriters and artists who are trying to navigate their next steps, any help you can get is greatly appreciated. I’ve had the opportunity to work with some great individuals in this business who are successful in different ends of it. Fortunately for us, they also have blogs and platforms where they share their insight and experiences which benefit us. I want to plug you into their platform so you can benefit from what they have to say to give you a better grid for your decision-making process.

 

KSCR_400x400 Resource 1: Radio KSCR

This is one of the premier web radio stations out of California. Internationally recognized, their programs cover the gambit of music styles and their listeners regularly engage in the bands that are featured. Getting on to this station can be a great way to start (or continue) your band marketing to other college outlets. Their social media (Facebook in particular) provides regular links to articles of significance for musicians and songwriters. Check them out here.

 

 

ShellyResource 2: Shelly Peikin

Shelly is the self-proclaimed “Serial Songwriter.” Her songwriting credits include hits for Christina Aguilara, Meredith Brooks and Natalie Cole, though she’s also written for a great many more well-known names in music. Her blog has incredible insight into what it takes to be in the professional songwriting business, where you write for other people in hopes they will take your song to the studio. It’s a lot more complicated than it seems, and the ever-changing state of the music industry hasn’t been kind to this avenue of its content creators. However, Shelly remains hopeful and continues crafting her brilliance. Follow her on Facebook for insights.

 

 

JesseHeadshot09 Resource 3: Right Arm Resource

There are some excellent music and band promotion companies representing truly remarkable talent. Many of them send me music on a weekly basis from artists all over the country in a variety of styles and genres. Right Arm Resource, run by Jesse Barnett, is one of the best. Aside from the great work they do as a promotion company, Jesse also writes a regular newsletter that gives insights into what’s trending in indie music and what’s working well for artists in their marketing avenues. Check out their site for more info.

Math For Musicians

MathForMusiciansCover
When you were in grade school, there were classes you had to take that didn’t really teach us much in the realm of what we need as adults. Sometimes, math was that class. Fortunately there are some math lessons that do matter. The key is knowing which numbers to pay attention to and which to ignore.

Download your copy of Math For Musicians now to learn lessons on growth and development for your music project to reach goals and create new opportunities.

Click To Download: MathForMusicians.compressed