This last spring, I watched the band Culture Abuse play the Boise Knitting Factory opening for The Story So Far. Sometime during the set, vocalist David Kelling addressed the crowd, comprised mostly of starstruck teenagers waiting to watch TSSF, with a speech unlike any I would expect to hear at a show that big. “Hey, nobody in a band is better than you!” Kelling said with a wide grin on his face, and you could tell he meant it. “Anything you see us doing on this stage, you can do, too.”
His message was important and one I’d love to hear from artists at any level of success. Memories come to mind of local support bands leaving once they play (and taking all of their friends with them), or stories of touring artists demanding fans to refill their drinks, as if fans should feel lucky to be in their presence (a good friend of mine actually was on the fan end of this). Stay humble and keep a few things in mind.
Read part one of this series: Be Your Own Record Label: Everything You Need to Know About Distribution
The following tips are based on my personal experience running a label and being in bands, trying to get the word out about music I put money and time into. Feel free to tell me your methods that have worked better in the comments below! Maybe we can help each other out.
This article orginally appeared on Soundfly.
Back in high school, my senior project advisor told me, “There’s no such thing as a perfect performance.” And then immediately busted out an incredible drum solo. I’ve never forgotten that moment. I just assumed that being able to pull out a great solo on a whim meant he must be telling the truth. While that’s not quite how the world works, I continue to find truth in his words.
Thelonious Monk is famous for saying, “There are no wrong notes; some are just more right than others.” It’s true that everyone – and I mean everyone – makes mistakes during live performances. In a duet with Kelsea Ballerini at this year’s ACMs, superstar Nick Jonas played a guitar solo that ended with some very noticeable mistakes (around 0:45). But he’s a professional. He wrapped up his solo, brushed it off, didn’t get frustrated, and finished out his set like a star.