Archive for music

KIDS WORKSHOP – MAY 26, 2012

Posted in Artists, Community, Deep Ellum, Love, Magic, music, Shows, Workshops with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2012 by artlovemagic

Who? All youth 6-16 and their parents


When? Saturday May 26th, noon-4pm


How Much? FREE!!

Where? Life in Deep Ellum- 2803 Taylor Street, Dallas, Texas 75226

 

Kids will work alongside professional artists of all different mediums. Including music, paint, pottery, pencil, watercolor, chalk, murals, paper crafts and more… Your child will have an opportunity to play, explore, create and learn!

With so many schools diminishing (or eliminating) art programs, it’s more important than ever to find ways to inspire our youth to think creatively and learn new ways to express themselves positively!

Each artist participating in this workshop is a local, working professional.

Confirmed artist lineup: Cori Berg (Craft), Ashley Jones (Mixed Media), Ixchel Aguilar (Painting), Riley Holloway (Drawing), Jason Kinney (Painting), Eddie Medina (Comics), Harmony White (Water color), Kate Colin (Water color), Jerod Davies (Spray paint collage), Bari Candy (Charcoal/Spraypaint),  Issac Davies (MC), Kelly Nygren (Percussion), DJ Ez Eddie (DJ).

The set-up will be studio, not classroom style. Parents must stay on premises. No need to bring anything but your creativity and excitement!

If you would like to volunteer or are interested in donating art supplies or cash donations for a future Kids Workshop please email: jenn@ artlovemagic.com.

Special ALM thanks to the Just Us League, whose generous donations made this important event possible, as well as Life in Deep Ellum who lovingly provided their awesome venue for this event.

How to Sell Out Properly pt. 1

Posted in Art Business, Marketing, music, The DIY Musician with tags , , , on April 19, 2012 by artlovemagic

Derek is an MBA in entrepreneurship, painter, and bassist for Onward We March, a local progressive metal band. He teaches business skills to artists and writes weekly music business advice for his blog Derek Thinks Music. Got a business question about your art? Shoot him an email at derekmiller5@gmail.com

So you’ve got it in your head that you must be signed to be happy. As you know, I am very much against labels as they are 95% of the time a terrible financial decision.

However, you don’t care.

Cool, let’s work with that. Join the party!

Since you’ve got your heart set on getting signed, let’s get our heads around how to look sexy for a label. As I’ve mentioned before, getting signed and getting bought out are exactly the same thing. A larger entity with lots of cash is willing to supply you with some sweet, sweet cash money in exchange for future profits and oversight. Not all of these investments (bands) will return as much cash, so a venture capital firm (label) will have a diverse portfolio (artist roster) in the hopes that a few investments (bands) will make enough money to cover the losses for all the failures.

The label’s interest in you is contingent upon how your band performs as a financial instrument. An advance is essentially the label loaning you money for a set period of time with the expectation that you’ll be able to repay the loan plus interest, thus making the label a Return On Investment (ROI).

If you’re making the label less money then they’re spending on you, consider yourself on the short list to get dropped. At this point they may suggest you change your look, sound, or direction. It’s not really a suggestion. Once a label has thrown cash at your band, it’s your duty to help them recoup their cost. Often, a band is given an advance to record an album with the stipulation that the band will not receive any additional compensation until the label makes enough cash to cover the advance. After that thresh hold is met, you’ll still earn only a percentage of profit from each sale. You have to make them that skrillah or you’re gone.

So if you really want to be signed, you want to position your band in a way that signals to labels that “this band is a solid investment.”

Let’s talk about some ways to preen your band for getting signed.

1. Study the Labels You Want To Get Signed On: Each label has a distinct personality, and your band needs to be careful about who they choose to do business with. (Death Row Records was affiliated with The Bloods and hired crooked cops/gang members!)

 Pay attention to the sounds of artists already on the label. Do they already have forty bands that sound like you? Or do you think you’d be a good way to round out their lineup? Remember, it’s about portfolio diversification.

 Pay attention to the marketing and tone of communications the label uses. Do they like proper press releases with careful wording, or are they more punk rock-ish? This will help you determine if the personality of your band would be a good fit.

 Pay attention to how satisfied artists are with the label. Does the label actually listen to the artist, or do they chew bands up and spit them out on a regular basis? (See the Victory Records Hawthorne Heights lawsuit)

 Pick out a list of a possible labels in your genre that might be a good fit for your band. Tailor your band’s “pitch” to fit each label’s personality, and you’re more likely to catch their attention.

 2. Find an “In”: Getting a label interested is infinitely easier if you can find an actual person to listen to you, as opposed to sending in a demo EP in the mail. Look around the label website, music publications, blogs, and local music industry directories to see if you can get a name.

In most cases, phone will tend to be ideal since emails and physical mail are much easier to ignore. Better still would be having a friend introduce you. Be polite and to the point with your pitch.

3. Pitch: Label or no, you need to know how to describe your music in under 10 seconds with a solid pitch. The goal of a pitch is to only get the “main ideas” of your art across and interest the listener enough to have them say “Hmm, ok. Tell me more.”

This is good: “We’re The Wigglin’ Waggles, a danceable Nirvana-sounding band from Dallas. We’d like to ask your permission to send a demo CD so we can talk further about possibly signing with your label.”

This is bad: “Hey, dude. Where do I send our demo?”

Expect more posts on building an effective pitch in the future. This is a BIG topic.

4. Get a High-Quality Demo: Your music needs to be its best to get someone to pay attention. If you have to apologize for your sound recording (It’s just a demo, man, so ignore the skipping sound), you need a new recording. End of story.

5. Minimize “Distasteful Behaviors”: Pure-bred businesspeople are uncomfortable going too far outside the norm. Musicians and artists live to push the boundaries, as that’s where artistic growth comes from.

But be aware of this disconnect.

There’s an limited amount of ‘edgy’ that a firm will be willing to tolerate before you cross a psychological thresh hold where people become uncomfortable. the ‘edginess’ works against you. Venture capital firms are less likely to help fund totally new enterprises in wholly unproven markets, as they have to defend their decision to their bosses. It’s much easier to defend investing $10 million when “the market for all-natural pet nutrition has been growing at 12% yearly, and this young company is perfectly positioned to take advantage of this growth.” It wasn’t until after Nirvana and Pearl Jam blew up that it became incredibly easy for a grunge band to get signed.

This thresh hold exists even in corporate life. Even if the official company policy says “tattoos and piercings are ok”, having ostentatious sleeves and plugs will permanently stunt your career at a corporation. We (humans) like those that look like us. We identify and help those that look more like us, consciously AND unconsciously. Being “too far out” makes others uncomfortable with you AND themselves. Just the same as if you were wearing a full suit to a punk rock show, looking like a punk rocker in a cubicle is asking for others to distrust you. Don’t.

So how do we apply this knowledge? First, cut the songs you have called “I’m Going To Punch Your Mom In The Face”. That’s not mass-market material. You can still keep some swearing and vulgar material in your songs because, hey, it’s rock and roll. But you don’t want to get too avant-garde with your performance or too offensive in your lyrics that your songs would not be playable on radio.

You don’t have to water down yourself completely, but be aware that you’ll want to polish your rough edges so that an A&R rep will spend her time selling you instead of explaining/defending you. And ditch hard drugs. Drugs signal unreliabile people which makes it difficult for a label to trust that dropping $20k on an album won’t end with someone in the band freaking out and ending up in rehab. Don’t be stupid.

To be continued next month.

Preparation for Underground

Posted in Artists, Community, Magic, music, photography, poetry, Shows with tags , , , , , , on November 6, 2011 by artlovemagic

Story by David Rodriguez

Underground will be here sooner than you think. The 2012 show is scheduled to be presented on Saturday, February 11, at South Side on Lamar once again.

So what is Underground? Underground is Dallas’ Largest Live Art Event of the year! Over 50 visual artists creating in the space, 2 stages, several Djs, a 21+ Room (Blue Room), and a VIP Lounge.

Here are a few links to help you with that answer:

Did you feel that?

Underground 2011 Interview: Cody Phillips x Monster Bot Dallas TX

Toys ROCKED at UNDERGROUND

Underground facebook page

How can you join Underground 2012?

Volunteering at Underground

Photo by William Neal

Our volunteers ROCK! Thanks to Caterina ‘Rina’ Provost-Smith, Yesi Sukilynn Soto, and Janelle Ghana Breeding for helping make Underground 2011 a success! Photo by William Neal.

Welcome! Thank you for taking an interest in being a part of Underground, 2012. Underground is the largest Live Art Show in Dallas! This show has several opportunities for you to lend a hand to make it happen. We ask volunteers to select one shift during the event night (Feb. 11, either  5:30pm-9:30pm, or 9:30pm-1:30am) first. That is the most important portion to fill. If you would like to volunteer for any other opportunity given, that would be great! Here is a link to get you connected:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dHcwZmM2YTJ5eWtZb2lObkJ2S0RVLUE6MQ

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Photo by Jenice Johnson

Want to be a Visual Artist at Underground

Welcome! Thank you for taking an interest in being a part of Underground, 2012. This show will be presented on February 11th, 2012, from 8pm to 12am at South Side on Lamar in Dallas. The production team is currently in the process of selecting visual artists for this event. All mediums are welcome (photography, painting, sculpting, jewelry, installation, illustration, welding, vinyl toys, body painting, etc.).

Underground will have a 3 week long gallery exhibit prior to the show. Artists are putting $30 and they keep 100% of sales from both the exhibit and the event. As always, all artists are creating live within the event. Our audience is interested in seeing your approach and method. All visual artist MUST produce a piece of work DURING the event. You do not have to finish the piece. Here is a link to get you connected:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dFFzTmd2NlRLd0pnakdrZVV2V1Ayb1E6MQ

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Photo by Sondra Beamon

Want to be a Band/Musician at Underground

Welcome! Thank you for taking an interest in being a part of Underground, 2012. This show will be presented on February 11th, 2012, from 8pm to 12am at South Side on Lamar in Dallas. The production team is currently in the process of selecting bands/musicians for this event. All genres are welcome. Please tell us a bit about what you do. We are looking to have our stages (yes, more than one stage) set by the end of November, 2011. Expect an e-mail by the end of November informing you of your status for this event. Here is a link to get you connected:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dHpkQlZDMFZvUFE5U3BkTjVXNXo4ZXc6MQ

I look forward to jammin’ with you guys and gals!

-Dr.

Artist Spotlight: Justin Griffith

Posted in Artists, Deep Ellum, music, Spotlight with tags , , , , on October 22, 2011 by artlovemagic

Tell me a little bit about yourself..

My name is Justin Griffith, but most people know me as GOAT, which stands for Grades Of Absolute Truth.  I’m an elementary music teacher by day, and an extremely active musician every other minute.  I’ve been teaching since 2005.  I’m literally addicted to music and I love kiddos, so teaching made perfect sense to me. I’m heavily involved in Dallas’ music scene and feel like it’s a HUGE part of me.

As you have grown within your talent, what inspires you to create?

My inspiration comes from living this crazy life.  Multiple things happen everyday that spark some type of thought that may eventually become a song or be a part of a song.  Inspiration is crawling everywhere you look, just gotta pay attention.  Those little moments that seem magical have to be documented somehow and as musicians and artists, it’s our job to do it.

How long have you been producing your craft and why did you begin this form of expression?

It’s hard to say how long I’ve been developing my craft because it’s been almost a life-long thing.  I’ve been told that I used to recognize songs within the first few notes of hearing them since I was a young child.  I received my first guitar when I was in 5th grade and began taking lessons immediately.  I sang formally in a choral setting from 7th grade all the way until I graduated college.  I played guitar, bass, and sang in rock, blues, and metal bands from junior high until my second year of college.  I studied classical voice at the University of North Texas in Denton from 2002-2005, then graduated from there with a Bachelor of Music degree with a minor in education.  I started experimenting with solo stuff around 1999.  My first big show as a solo artist was in 2004 and my first official solo release was in 2006.  Now I’m sharing what I know about music with students and what I’ve learned about life with audiences through music, so you can say that I’ve dedicated my life to it.  I began music as a form of expression because I needed an outlet.  I started writing poetry and lyrics when I was 13 to get things off my chest.  Although I had a great family life, I went through dark times as an adolescent and still deal with those battles today.  My Mom has said before that music saved my life and I agree without a fraction of doubt.

What do you ultimately want to accomplish with your talent?

My ultimate goal has always been to make a living from music.  In a sense, I’ve accomplished that through teaching.  At this point, I strive to continue stepping up the ladder of success by building a larger regional and national following through regular performances and creative releases.  I’ve had a plan to work on recording projects throughout the school year, then hit the road to promote and tour during the summer.  I’ve had a small amount of success with putting that into motion already, but I plan to build it up more.  On a more personal level, I want to make a difference.  I crave making positive impacts on other people’s lives and I feel like it’s my calling to do it through music.

Outside of your artistry, what other interests do you have?

The majority of my interests are linked to music somehow.  I’m into audio engineering, mixing, mastering, graphic design, video editing, promotions, marketing, event planning, leadership, and philanthropy.  Love to play basketball, cook, camp, shoot guns, and spend time with my peoplez too.

What was your first experience with ArtLoveMagic?

My first experience with ArtLoveMagic was in 2008 at South Side on Lamar.  I attended girlShow and was blown away.  A friend of mine had a table set up to raise funds for breast cancer and I was mainly comin’ out to support her.  At that time, I was in the process of launching H4 (Hip Hop Helps Heal).  I met Michael Lagocki that night and invited him to the first ever H4 meeting.  I wanted to involve ArtLoveMagicians in our breast cancer benefit show.  Since then, I’ve been involved in multiple ALM shows and have a huge amount of respect for their movement.  They. Freakin’. Rock.

What web address can one go to to view more of what you do?

You can find out more about me, my music, videos, and show calendar at musicbygoat.com.

How can someone contact you?

If you wanna drop me a line, ask a specific question, or book me for a house party, an event, or a personal performance, hit me up at goat@musicbygoat.com.

                                                                   

Artist Spotlight: Jamie Reeves

Posted in music, Spotlight, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on June 27, 2011 by artlovemagic

Tell me a little bit about yourself..

Hey there. My name is Jamie Reeves and I am a singer/songwriter from a little city called  Wylie, TX. Both of my parents grew up in musical families, so growing up my parents were always supportive of my love for playing music. With both of my older brothers being guitar players,  it wasn’t long after getting my first guitar that I began to strum the strings and write lyrics.  Before learning guitar I developed a passion for writing poetry. Lyrics and messages to the soul are very important in my music.  These days I reside in Carrollton where I play solo acoustic shows and high powered rock electric shows with  The Demigods.

As you have grown within your talent, what inspires you to create?

WOW! What an amazing question! One big thing that  inspires me to express is the world around me, and the world within me; even more so, the bridge that connects both of those worlds. Then there is the emotional world; it can take us to the highest highs and the lowest lows, it lets us express ourselves in the most unique fashion.  Then there is the “State of the World.”  It lets us create the beauty that we wish to see when we look from behind our eyes. Even though the world is filled with so much suffering, we can still make things brighter by following our dreams.

How long have you been producing your craft and why did you begin this form of expression?

I began writing songs with my brother Jake Reeves at the age of 11. With the help of my dad who was a harmonica player in the Dallas blues and Texas country scene, we played picking parties for the  now well known radio station 95.3 The Range. At the age of fifteen my Dad bought me my first acoustic guitar.  It wasn’t long  before I was singing and strumming, writing and molding, finding my self through poetry and sound. At heart, I am a healer. I can remember the first time I sang a note in front of my first grade music class and a shock of electricity ran up my spine. I felt I could heal with my voice, and this is why I continue to sing.


What do you ultimately want to accomplish with your talent?

I like this because this is a larger than life question. I want to share my music with the people on this planet who want to make this world a brighter place to live.  To one day be a part of something so big, it changes these false systems that we are all trapped in. I want to remind people of the old ways of the tribe and Shaman; to heal themselves with herbs, organic foods, and ancient healing methods. To plant trees, to respect nature and every form of life.”We are the music makers, we are the dreamers of the dream.”

Outside of your artistry, what other interests do you have?

These days I enjoy riding my bike, playing with my animals,  hanging with my family, practicing healing and magical arts, reading, camping, spending time with my niece, and crystal collecting.

What was your first experience with ArtLoveMagic?

My first ArtLoveMagic show was girlShow 2008. A couple of months previously I had met Deborah Driscoll and Cheryl Anderson at a local art collective called The Shanty. At the time I had taken somewhat of a hiatus from music and was focusing on research and activism. I started actively playing at the shanty, and once again began to write songs. Deb and Cheryl instantly told me about girlShow and ArtLove Magic. I started writing a song of inspiration called “Frozen memories” before the show. It was as if all of my emotions and built up energy from that year was packed into the song, and I was so ready to finally play a show again.  The night was filled with magical paint brushes and flashes of photography, beautiful faces, and voices. When I took the stage the magic took over, as I sang frozen memories I looked up to see everyone at the show watching me very intensely.  I had not yet finished the song, but on that magical night I wrote the rest of the song on stage, and I shined bright. ArtLoveMagic is an incredible organization for artistic people to gain inspiration, I am so happy that I found these fantastic beings during that difficult period in my life.

What web address can one go to to view more of what you do?

http://myspace.com/jamiereevesmusic

also     http://reverbnation.com/thedemigods

How can someone contact you?

You can email me at hardtruthsoldierchick@gmail.com
Namaste,
~J

Guest Blogger – Derek on Fan Velocity

Posted in Art Business, music, The DIY Musician with tags , , , , , on June 14, 2011 by artlovemagic

Derek is an MBA in entrepreneurship and bassist for Onward We March, a local progressive metal band. He teaches business skills to artists and writes weekly music business advice for his blog Derek Thinks Music.

As a musician, you’ve crafted your music to the best performance and presentation it’s ever been, but that will only carry you so far.

The real multiplier for your music career’s success is the velocity of your fans. Do they rabidly promote your band because they connect with you and love what you stand for? As an example, and I’m terrified of them, you can’t deny the efficacy of the Juggalos, the name given to fans of Insame Clown Posse, for supporting their band. Or do the people you’ve touched actively go out of their way to discourage others from listening to your music? Example: Metallica lost a good number of fans after the band decided to sue its followers over the Napster controversy.

They're millionaires. Yep.

It used to be that there was an invisible wall between the artist and their fans. PR spokesmen, artist managers, burly security guards, tinted limos, etc… if you didn’t want to talk to the public beyond your music, you would have someone step in for you and create a buffer. You could live in space when you weren’t on stage as far as anyone was concerned. Rest assured there was someone out there actively interacting with fans, spreading the gospel of your music.

But the middlemen are disappearing.

Today it’s just you and the fan. They can interact with you directly through twitter, myspace, forums, email, carrier pigeon… If they see you before or after a show, they wanna talk to you. The fan *expects* to be able to interact with you. This is part of your job description as an artist. Communicating emotion involves communication.

Why is this?

Choosing to listen to a band is an identity decision.

When I say “I’m a HUGE fan of Boris“, it’s an identity statement. Music is all about emotions, philosophy, and stories. When we state our preferences, we’re explicitly saying “I identify with the message they are conveying to the world. This band and their music represents how I see the world.”

We project the person we want to be onto our artists.

As such, we, as your fans, want to know as much as we can about who we have decided is worthy of membership into our “Personal Identity Club”. This is a club for cool people *only*, because we’re the president of it!

So if we finally interact with an idol and they look down on us, blow us off, or call us chumps, they’re out of our club. Gone. Even worse, any time the former-fan hears the artist’s name, they’re gonna chime in saying “They’re a jerk! Don’t listen to em’!”.

Even not replying to their messages is a slight. If you don’t respond to a fans’ attempt to connect with you, to them it feels the same as a a friend blowing you off. It hurts.

You can’t ignore or hate on your fans anymore. They’re the only ones keeping you afloat.

Work on your fan velocity.

Artist Spotlight: Playdough

Posted in Artists, Community, Magic, music, Spotlight with tags , , , , , on March 21, 2011 by artlovemagic

Tell me a little bit about yourself..

I’m Playdough. I’m an Emcee and producer. I’m a solo artist as well as part of a crew called Deepspace5. I’m a family man and I live in Arlington.

As you have grown within your talent, what inspires you to create?

I love making music. I love having an idea and working on it to it’s completion. I love all the different styles and cadences and melodies and moods that music allows us to explore. Sometimes it’s personal and changes you, sometimes it changes others that hear it. Meeting and talking with people that have been effected or enjoy my music is a big part, but I honestly couldn’t do anything else. Music is infused into my life and is a part of me.

How long have you been producing your craft and why did you begin this form of expression?

I’ve been rapping since I was in the 6th grade. Hip-Hop really grabbed me. I was always drawn to music, but hip-hop specifically spoke to me in a way that I never really made a conscious choice to do it. One day I looked up and I was knee deep in it. It just kind of sucks you in and makes you a part of the culture.

What do you ultimately want to accomplish with your talent?

I want to continue to take it to people who need and enjoy it. Worldwide. I want get people thinking. At the end of the day I want people to hear the Life in my music. I have nothing to offer people outside of Christ and what I’ve learned from Him. I hope my music reflects the Life and eternal hope that comes through knowing Him.

Outside of your artistry, what other interests do you have?

I’m a huge family man so if I’m not doing music I’m probably playing around with my family. I also love basketball and am forever supporting the Mavs. I’m also a big fan of reading so it’s nothing strange to find my nose in a book.

What was your first experience with ArtLoveMagic?

My first experience was meeting some of the ArtLoveMagic family at some of my shows. I started to meet people associated with them and was really impressed by the type of people they were. Lots of Love, support and genuine encouragement. The more people I met the more I saw the talent and how deep it goes. Everyone involved is ridiculous in their own way. I’ve got nothing but Love for you guys and am honored that people of your talent appreciate what I do. In my mind somehow it adds validity to what I do.

What web address can one go to to view more of what you do?

www.iamplaydough.com

How can someone contact you?

On my website is probably the easiest, but I’m on the usual sites, too. Try www.twitter.com/_playdough or www.facebook.com/playdoughmusic or you can ask your mom, she’s got my number.