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Top Seven Rules For Getting Music Gigs

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Top Seven Rules For Getting Music Gigs

by Tessie Barnett & Jessica Brandon

Are you looking for Gigs? Here are a few helpful tips for the best practices in the gig business.

Lord & LadyMany artists and professionals have built a solid, organic following with their talent but struggle to get beyond a certain threshold. It’s a point at which some artists give up and others get big. It is possible to grow your business to the level of name and brand recognition. It just takes consistent movement, time, and exposure. By incorporating these tips into your own business, you can attract loyal clients and jump to the next level in your career.

 

  1. Be Passionate

When you’re performing or engaging with your fans, there needs to be energy—and lots of it. An audience can very clearly see when an artist has become stagnant or bored. Having experience in your field is a benefit for obvious reasons, but after the initial excitement of performing wears off, you should be aware of how that affects your output.

Try to push yourself at all times. What would be an unusual addition to the song you’ve gotten hundreds of requests for? What could you bring as a visually appealing element to your performance? How can you get closer to the audience? The performers who involve their fans make a lasting impact, and those fans are eager to tell others about it.

 

  1. Be Open

Too often, entertainers will pass up an opportunity to perform because it doesn’t pay well—or at all. Yes, it’s a controversial subject and this is your livelihood we’re talking about. But in order to increase your exposure and networking opportunities, it’s going to require a little give and take.

Charity and nonprofit functions are just a few events that will request donated performances. We’ve seen many artists advance their business by taking advantage of this outreach. The event organizers responsible for raising funds for a particular cause have to entice people to attend. What better way to do that than with live entertainment? With that in mind, they’ll promote your talent to the community as it benefits you both.

These charitable events are typically attended by community leaders, business owners and journalists, so the exposure and networking opportunities can be well worth a performance donation.

 

  1. Be Everywhere

Speaking of networking…

It’s imperative to take advantage of the outreach capabilities available through social media. These days, artists are able to connect with fans more than ever, so it’s become easier for them to expect this direct engagement. In order to gain traction in your industry and build a loyal following, you’ll want to make yourself accessible. Your social media platforms can be used to promote your talent, of course, but it has increasingly become a way for your followers to get to know the person behind the talent.

Networking is about creating ongoing relationships. As your business grows and your calendar starts to fill up quicker, you may find it difficult to maintain each of these relationships. Your network can evolve on its own simply by displaying client reviews on your website. A recent consumer review survey showed that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

Request reviews from your client right after a show when your performance is still fresh on their mind. This is the optimal time for feedback. Fans are still pumped by your intense energy and often times want to give back any way they can.

Another benefit to the review process is that it requires the client to list details that, over time, could be forgotten. Because they took the time to reflect, your performance can be imprinted in their memory which will make them more likely to recommend you.

We’ll be sure to keep you up-to-date with any new trends or practices that can help you get more gigs. Until then, be passionate, be open, and be everywhere.

“The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” -Steve Jobs

 

  1. Know Your Music Inside-Out.

There is a need to be not just “good enough”, but GREAT. Why settle for less? Whatever developing stage you are at, go beyond it, re-commit yourself to your instrument or voice. Take lessons, or better yet, sit yourself down and watch on YouTube or at your CD player and choose a favorite musicians record, and listen closely to what they are playing. then re-play it, and re-play it again. Challenge yourself to go beyond your limitations. Who knows, maybe you will fall into some new territory, wherein you will find yourself, your “sound”, and increase your chance to stand out from all the mediocrity that is your competition.

Believe it or not, record labels love to hear innovative, accessible new sounds. Actually in their heart of hearts, that is what they are really hoping to hear on every new demo, and from every new act they go see at a live venue. You see, in the business of music, when we hear something new, original, and accessible to people, we can then invest in you with more security, believing that if we put our “label brand” on you, with our talents of promotion and marketing coming to the front, then we “have something”, and your music becomes our music, and we work together to broaden you audience appeal.

 

  1. Make Set Lists

To some this is a regular, fundamental practice. To others, there isn’t much thought put into it, or they don’t make one at all.

There are several advantages to taking the time to write out a set list:

When each band member knows what song is next, the show will run much smoother.

You can properly time your set.

You’ll learn how to make the show flow and reduce or eliminate “dead-air.”

You’ll be able to go back over it and review what worked and what didn’t work.

There is a definite art to constructing a good set list – especially one that works well over and over again. When it’s done correctly, you’ll consider keys, tempos, genres, and especially – your audience, and put it in an order that makes sense.

The primary objective is to take people on a ride by dictating the mood in the room with the way you put your sets together. Creating and utilizing great segues and medleys is also a must to keep things moving and to keep the crowd engaged. With practice and tweaking, you can come up with brilliant set lists that make your band look like pros.

 

  1. Pick the Right Songs

This is perhaps one of the most crucial aspects of your live show. There are many factors to consider including your genre, the ability of the musicians in the band, the venue, and the type of gigs you are playing.

 

The priority here, of course, is to make sure that the crowd is enjoying the show. If someone has walked into the room where you’re performing, they’ll be much more likely to stay if they like the songs you’re playing. You’ll never be able to please everyone, so you want to focus on what the majority of people want to hear. It’s important to always remember that you are not playing for you, but rather, you’re playing for the people that are listening to you.

  1. Know Your Audience

As previously mentioned, your show and song list should be catered to the people in attendance. If you have a regular following, you should have a good idea of the kind of music that they expect to hear you play. Just like a company that has a physical product that they are looking to sell, your band has to have an intimate understanding of what the people want.

One of the best ways to determine the preferences of the crowd is to simply talk to them individually. Ask them what they like and don’t like, why they like you, and how they think you could improve. Quite often, you won’t even have to ask, and people will just voluntarily offer up information. Your job in this case is to simply pay attention and take it all in. Then you can process what you have to work with and base your presentation on what will yield the best results for everyone involved.

 

GigSalad is the largest entertainment booking platform in the U.S. and Canada. This marketplace connects event hosts with entertainment. GigSalad can help you do what you love.  www.GigSalad.com

For more information on IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards), go to:  http://www.inacoustic.com

 

 

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Son Of Legendary Folk Musician Co-Writes With Leon Russell, After Winning Acoustic Music Awards

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Son Of Legendary Folk Musician Co-Writes With Leon Russell, After Winning Acoustic Music Awards

International Acoustic Music Awards (IAMA) announces A.J. Croce as Overall Grand Prize Winner and Winner of AAA/Alternative for song “I Should Have Known” AJ Croce. AJ is the son of legendary folk musician Jim Croce (#1 hits “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown” and “Time in a Bottle” )

Another legendary songwriter, 2011 Inductee into Songwriter’s Hall of Fame Leon Russell co-writes with A.J. Croce. The new song will be released later this year.

With a four star review in Rolling Stone, A.J. Croce’s last album Cage of Muses is a shining milestone on the circuitous road that the singer-songwriter has traveled.  David Wild of Rolling Stone considers him “one of our greatest young songwriters” – and with good reason. A.J. won top honors at the 9th Annual IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards) by winning the overall grand prize as well as the first prize in the AAA/Alternative category with his original song “I Should Have Known”. “I Should Have Known” was a co-write with the very accomplished singer/songwriter Steve Poltz and was released in 2006 on A.J.’s album ‘Cantos.’ Another well-known co-write for Steve Poltz was the #2 hit for Jewel “You Were Meant For Me.” In A.J.’s career he has won six San Diego Music Awards in various categories and a Pollstar Adult Contemporary Award in 1993.

Music Artists are judged based on music performance, music production, artistry and songwriting (or song selection). Over 12,500 entries were received for the event.  A.J. Croce’s “Beatles like” song “I Should Have Known” beat out other notable winners at the 9th Annual IAMA such as: Wes Carr (Top winner of Australian Idol) who won Best Male Artist; Joel Rafael (Board of Director of Folk Alliance International) who won Best Folk/Americana/Roots; Mayu Wakisaka (Japanese Acoustic Musician), who won Best Open Category; and Virtuoso Guitar Duo Loren Barrigar & Mark Mazengarb who won Best Instrumental.

This week A.J. began songwriting with legendary musician and songwriter Leon Russell. Leon Russell is from Tulsa, Oklahoma and has been performing his gospel-infused southern boogie piano rock, blues, and country music for over 50 years.  Leon was nominated with Elton John for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals in 2011 for his song, “If It Wasn’t For Bad”, from ‘The Union’ album. He was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2011.  His songwriting credits include “A Song for You”, “Delta Lady”, “Hummingbird”, “Lady Blue”, “Back To The Island”, “Tight Rope”, and “This Masquerade”. “It’s a thrill and a little surreal to collaborate with Leon Russell. He’s been an influence and an inspiration as long as I can remember,” says A.J.

Seven of A.J.’s albums have hit radio charts in a different genre, including Top 40, Independent, Americana, AAA, Blues, College, and Jazz, but apart from rankings, what makes A.J.’s music and performance special is its incredible variety. The son of legendary singer-songwriter Jim Croce, A.J.’s musical evolution was inspired by a broad spectrum of styles including classic rhythm and blues, folk, and British rock.

With his newly released track, “Right on Time,” singer-songwriter A.J. Croce is inaugurating the New Year with his most ambitious recording project to date. Twelve Tales, delivers a dozen new tracks recorded by legendary producers across a variety of American cities to be released one song each month, concluding with the complete full length release of the CD at the end of 2013.

A.J.’s notable producers are Nashville’s illustrious “Cowboy” Jack Clement (Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis); New Orleans’ ambassador of funk Allen Toussaint (Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton), and West Coast wunderkind Joe Henry (Elvis Costello, Solomon Burke).

The lead single “Right on Time,” tracked in Stamford, CT, is produced and mixed by five-time Grammy winner Kevin Killen, producer of five projects with Elvis Costello, and an engineer/mixer whose credits include U2, Peter Gabriel, and Los Lobos among many other luminaries.

A.J.’s career began with his first tour at age 17 opening up for B.B. King. At age 19 he was signed to Private Music/BMG where he released two successful albums. His subsequent albums were released on various independent labels leading up to 2003. As an independent artist, he formed his own label Seedling Records in 2003, this ambitious project marks the latest milestone on Adrian James Croce’s illustrious journey as a songsmith, vocalist, and an ever-evolving artist.

For more information on IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards), go to: http://www.inacoustic.com

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