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15 Reality Checks Young Artists Need to Hear

Musician Life

Aug 26, 2016 10:00 AM

Adam Bernard

Musicians: Here's Everything You Need to Know About Gear Insurance

Your instruments are your life. You should protect them the best way possible. (Image via Wikimedia Commons)

Back in June, I wrote a column entitled "8 Essential Tips for Keeping Your Gear Safe While on Tour (From Musicians Who Learned the Hard Way)." It closed with a bonus tip noting every artist should have gear insurance. This sparked a number of replies from artists who didn’t know about gear insurance, and those who did know about it had a lot of questions.

With this in mind, I caught up with Laura Donelan, Assistant Vice President, Business Development Leader at MusicPro Insurance, to learn about the basics of gear insurance and get the answers every musician needs.

15 Reality Checks Young Artists Need to Hear (From People Who Know What They're Talking About)

Some artists blow up young, but that doesn’t mean you will. (Photo by Fuguito via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0)

Young artists bring a lot of raw talent to the table, but they also bring a naiveté about the music industry that can not only make their lives difficult, but can totally derail a career.

While there’s nothing wrong with being a dreamer, it’s imperative to realize there’s a huge difference between a dream and reality. A young artist may have visions of signing a big contract and the world being at his or her feet, but if that’s what an artist believes to be the truth, a reality check is necessary.

In order to get a clear picture of that reality check, I spoke with 12 professionals in the industry, including publicists, artists, an artist management team, and a label owner who also runs a recording studio, all of whom have worked with young artists. They broke down the reality checks all young artists need to hear.

8 Things Artists Do That Drive Music Journalists Insane

Your actions could be making writers angry, and you wouldn’t like us when we’re angry. (Photo by Yiiğit Can via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 4.0

Music journalists aren't angry people. Really, we aren't, but certain things artists have been known to do make us go from mild-mannered Bruce Banner to full-on Hulk smash. If you don’t want to feel the wrath of the Hulk, here are eight sins you’ll want to avoid.

Performing, Honing Your Craft

Jul 13, 2016 08:00 AM

Adam Bernard

8 Pro Tips for Performing at Outdoor Venues and Festivals This Summer

Bebe Rexha trusted her sound person at Warped Tour last year and had a fantastic set. (Photo by Adam Bernard; used with permission)

It’s officially summer, and that means festival dates and performances at outdoor venues.

Unlike traditional music venues, outdoor venues have a ton of outside stimuli for concertgoers. Whether it’s food trucks, merch tents, or a hot girl or guy who’s showing a little extra skin, even though everyone's technically there for the music, you’re still vying for people’s attention. Weather, of course, is another potential issue. You can hit the stage in a rainstorm, or be performing in 100-plus degree heat.

How should artists deal with these things, and what else should they prepare for before hitting the stage for an outdoor performance? For the answers to those questions, we asked two outdoor venue experts: Kevin Lyman, founder of Warped Tour, and Lynne Colatrella, Vice President of Events and Marketing for Stamford Downtown, which puts on the annual Alive@Five series of outdoor concerts each summer in Stamford, CT. Here's their advice.

8 Essential Tips for Keeping Your Gear Safe While on Tour (From Musicians Who Learned the Hard Way)

Image via Flickr / CC BY 2.0

You’d be hard pressed to find a more helpless feeling than returning to your van to find all of your gear stolen. Sadly, this is something that happens to artists on a regular basis. Heck, sometimes thieves don’t stop at just the gear, they’ll take the entire van.

Before he’d become a victim of van theft, indie singer-songwriter Chase Huglin shared a sentiment many artists have: “I felt like this was something that would never happen to me.”

It happened, however, as Huglin and his tourmates at the time, Sundressed, woke up to find their U-Haul trailer was no longer attached to their van. Zach Schwochow, drummer of the Christian metalcore band Convictions, experienced a similar incident – except the thieves didn’t just take the trailer, they hot-wired the van and drove off with that, too.