I like to keep my ears open. Advice is such a blessing (or at least a good portion of it.) Immediate feedback from the audience you play for. I can’t count how many times peoples suggestions have ended up benefiting me. Anything from “hey, you should use more treble in your amp” to “have you tried plucking the strings this way?”
Now, there is definitely some terrible advice out there. I have gotten a share of bad words, “you should stop wasting your time with your band” but this is also from a more malicious standing, rather than a genuine “helpful” intention. What I want to focus on is good advice. Words that are meant to be helpful, thoughtful, and nice.
One thing that the band and I adhere to is a goal system. We like to set goals, and achieve them. Now, we of course want to make a living and tour the world as musicians but that is a big goal. We stick to a strong system of small goals. Be it “have x amount of shows booked at all times” to “sell 40 cd’s a month” we like to set a series of small goals. This, we feel, helps us achieve things faster, and more efficiently. We can focus on small things, knock them out with haste, and move on.
I think, as a band, this is one of the most important things we’ve ever done (besides getting along.) This is something i would suggest to everyone who is in a band, or just a solo musician. Set yourself a set of small goals, and do them. Once you have finished that set, craft a new set and continue.
It is such a simple concept. I really hope that it benefits you and your music for many years to come. Another thing that is a huge help is to always have an open mind. Open your mind to new ideas, new sounds, new concepts.
When I was approached to be a a contributor to SF intercom by Stefan, I have to admit that I was apprehensive. I have never really had a knack at writing, but Stefan was very insistent, and I said yes. I must say that writing this alone has really opened my eyes. Though it has taken more time to write than id like to admit, this has been a huge learning experience and has been highly entertaining to me.
Before I finish this off, I want to leave you with a quote. I heard this quote today and it really spoke to me. I experienced such a strong emotion towards it, and it spoke to me. If you would like to watch the video this quote is said in, it is on Youtube.com under “Break It Down: Ray Manzarek” He is rather well spoken and this interview really opened up my mind. The quote is as follows:
“You have to be open to the energy. If you can open your heart to the energy, that great love energy of the creation of this entire universe, good things will happen to you but you’ve got to believe. You’ve got to believe in the goodness. You have to open your heart to the energy, you can’t be afraid.” – Ray Manzarek, The Doors
Thank you again for reading this, and I look forward to writing more and more, soon.
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