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Why Musicians Should Stop Networking!

This month’s post is originally written by bassist Brandon Shaw. I have seen it floating around on social media a few times and he took the words right out of my mouth. When someone brings up the topic of “networking” I shudder. When someone asks me interrogative questions with the sole purpose of furthering their career, or how I can help them get “connected with so and so” I feel slightly sleezy and like I should go take a shower. I will let Brandon elaborate on what I’m talking about. This information isn’t just limited to the music industry, and I think people of every profession can learn something from this. Without further ado, here is Brandon’s original post in its entirety…

I hate that word. I hate it. It conjures up images of douchebags and stacks of business cards from people you barely know. Instagram feeds of self-gloating “Today’s Office” selfies. Half-assed declarations of “we should play together” when you really just want them to call you for gigs.

I’m speaking, of course, about my least favorite word: Networking.

Continue reading Why Musicians Should Stop Networking!

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Tips to Successfully Release Your Album (Without A Label)!

Last month my blog post was about what I did leading up to making my album. This month I will let you know what is in the works after having completed it. I’ll talk about some commonly forgotten about steps as well as things to think about with the new advancements in digital and social media.  Continue reading Tips to Successfully Release Your Album (Without A Label)!

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Dealing With Emotions

Throughout your music career and in life you will be forced to deal with multiple emotions. Hopefully most of those are positive ones. However, the ones that will be the hardest will be the negative ones. You are human and you are not alone. There are ways to deal with these temporary hurdles and ways to come out the other side stronger and able to take on more as you move forward in life. This month’s post is going to help you recognize some of the ways humans deal with stress and other taxing feelings, while also managing your emotions to stay focused on your career.

Continue reading Dealing With Emotions

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Gig Etiquette Reminders!

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The dictionary defines etiquette as the rules indicating the proper and polite way to behave. The more complete definition is the conduct or procedure required by good breeding or prescribed by authority to be observed in social or official life. I am going to refer to how etiquette impacts the musician on the job (or gig). These are gentle reminders of how you should be conducting yourself as well as other things to think about. Continue reading Gig Etiquette Reminders!

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10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Attending Music School

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With some of my students graduating college heading out into “real life”, and others graduating high school heading to college in the fall, it made me think about things I wish I had known ahead of time. Below are some tips that I either figured out during my college career or after I graduated that would have saved a bunch of time if I had known about them in advance. Continue reading 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before Attending Music School

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How To Efficiently Learn Music (And Do It Quickly)!

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So you get the call to play with an artist. You are available to do the hit and now you need to learn the music. This post will help set you up for success so you can learn the music quickly and have more time for other tasks at hand. If you prepare correctly, you won’t be spending most of your time writing charts and you will only need a little daily maintenance to keep things in check until the gig.

Continue reading How To Efficiently Learn Music (And Do It Quickly)!

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New Year’s Reminders (that you should already be doing)!

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Here are 15 tips that you should already be incorporating into your career as a professional musician. With everyone making resolutions for the New Year, I prefer to call them reminders. I remind myself of the goals I had, and check in to make sure I am still on track, or adjust them as necessary (or add new ones to replace completed ones). This post is full of knowledge I learned in high school and college that I continue to put to good use on a regular basis. Continue reading New Year’s Reminders (that you should already be doing)!

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12 Things I Learned After I Graduated Music School

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In this month’s post I will list twelve things I learned after I graduated from music school. These are tips I learned that I couldn’t get from a textbook or from my teacher telling me. I am still learning more everyday, but I feel these are things I deal with regularly, that every musician should know. A few of them have already touched upon in previous blog posts so feel free to go back and read those. Continue reading 12 Things I Learned After I Graduated Music School

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Staying Fit And Eating Healthy On The Road!

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As a professional musician, I travel a lot. Domestically and internationally. This means my schedule is constantly changing. I have had to be flexible with my day to day activities (like practicing, learning new music, paying bills, sleeping, etc), but most importantly with taking care of my body so that I can continue to travel the world playing drums. This includes my physical fitness routine as well as my eating habits. Fortunately for me, one of my very good friends is a personal trainer who has worked with professional athletes from the NBA and NFL, and my mother is an RN in the field of infectious disease control, working with the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) and top doctors. I have not gotten sick in over a year, and my pants size has only gone up one number from high school (32 to a 33). I’m going to share the tips I use to keep this music making machine running in tip top shape.

Continue reading Staying Fit And Eating Healthy On The Road!

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First Post!!! 1.15.14

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Welcome to my blog. This is my first post and I’m going to try and find things to say that you might not find in a music techniques book but are also interesting and informative. If not from me, then from friends of mine that you would probably enjoy listening to. To me this is like moving into a new place; unpacking the boxes from the old place, figuring out where everything should go, getting tips from others already established in their comfortable little nook. I invite you on this journey with me and hopefully I won’t get us lost. Continue reading First Post!!! 1.15.14