What do you do when you spend a huge part of your life looking for answers for something, you get all of them and you don't know where to start?
It goes like this 90% of the time, I get a great idea about a meme that will direct 10% of the world population (roughly 10 million people) to www.mikegrungejazz.com. After I create my brilliant idea, I post it on the popular social media sites. Long story short, no 10 million hits. I try and try again. 6 months later, I get pissed, so I give up on the idea.
If my child says that she wants to become a musician I know exactly what I'm going to do a help her. I'm going to grab a paper bag, put dog shit in it and then tell her to go from door to door and sell as much dog shit as she can. At least she will get comfortable with trying to sell something. That's one trait most musicians don't have, the comfort of selling something.
A few nights ago my friends from the blues band Grimmy Blue stopped over to record a podcast with me that will be posted from this site. I really hope that this resparks the "radio/podcast fire" in me. I'm glad I separated from Berkeley Liberation Radio when I did. I think I got to keep my attitude of gratitude with that whole situation.
Is there a definition for somebody who is scared of the TV? Because I think I am one of those people. Why do people enjoy watching Miley Cyrus doing that weird shit with her ass? That's entertainment? When I had cats and they did something like that in our front room we would throw water on em and make them go outside. If thats were civilization is heading then I guess I should have sold drugs like the counselor in highschool told me to.
When moving up any kind of ladder to better yourself, always be ready for someone or something to pull you down so you don't reach the top. What is even more scary is when that "thing" is yourself. When that was the case for me the world had to stop until I got shit moving in the right direction. Being dysfunctional and an overachiever is a rare, rare breed. And the very few who get to enjoy that social status is usually nursing a very sick soul
All I wanted was a song played on radio and I wound up with a radio show myself. I got 24, two hour shows. I realy wish it was longer but I'm not going to complain. I hope that kind of fools luck hapends again for me. I hear people say that luck hapends to people who work hard and are prepared, I've been doing that for a long time now. Are they saying I need luck to cash in on luck?
I have 4 things I see almost everyday, a phone, a bumper sticker, a guitar and my website. I like to look at the numbers on my site to see who visits my little taste of insanity on the net. The numbers are sometimes high, sometimes low. I push my music on one social network site and play for 10 people in a cafe and get 2000 hits that day. A week later I play a packed room, bust my ass on the net and get 300 hits. I get a grand plan In promotion on the net, work hard and the next day get a mind boggling 400 views on www.mikegrungejazz.com. a few day later my front tire falls off my car with my bumper sticker on the back of the car. I'm parked on the side of the road in a crappy part of Oakland for 45 minutes and that day my site gets 2000 hits.
Social media marketing, hash tags, EADGBE,DADF#AD,AADGBE,DGDGBD, circle of fifths and don't forget the fourths, old ways need to die so new ways can be born, have to be loving and kind no matter what... NO MATTER FUCKING WHAT! F7 chord... Bd inonian, F mixolydian and half step/whole step will work for now. I need a cool subject in a blog and a title is EVERYTHING. The more they change the more they stay the same.
Thats what it always feels like. Going on the radio, sound checks, recording at another studio and planning a plan then working it. But what came first, the hurrying or the waiting? So until next time you better hurry to get to that court house on time so you can sit around in a packed room with other people sitting around in a hurry waiting to be thanked for their jury service. Or getting to a bar on time to see a local band do a 45 minute sound-check in front of the audience that consists of 6 people that seats 150 people (you, a band members girlfriend, someone's grandma, 2 drunks yelling at the bar and one pissed off bar tender/club owner. They should be pissed because you should"ve brought 50 people on a Wednesday night in a shitty neighborhood with next to no parking)
I'm fucking ranting and my wife has to edit this. She gets so annoyed if a blog is more than 2 sentences. Until next time... buy my fucking music. If you don't get it for yourself get it for someone you don't like. Did you know people who buy indie albums have 5 times more good karma than people who don't buy indie shit? So if you got drunk one night and went for a drive in a city somewhere, woke up with the front fender missing and a 17 year old chick you never met passed out in the back seat and you don't remember how any of that happened than maybe you should buy some of my older shit too. Oh fuck I'm rambling again... my wife is going to get annoyed when she sees this.
You read the title. And there is no bullshit behind it. I have a wife, neighbors, friends, in-laws, and the Albany Police Department to back me up on it. If you could make a living destroying things I would've been a permanent guest on Mythbusters. However I learn from my mistakes and if you want different results you have to do things differently and making a susssessful album is no exception.
To make a long story short I am no stranger to recording, releasing, promoting, getting airplay (Got one hell of a story for that), placing music on films, getting help from producers and pushing it in other cities and states. Have I gotten the results I wanted when releasing the music? Yes, but not all of it. From my experience it is next to impossible for one person to get huge results alone and on a small budget. Thats why my next album will be sponsored by crowdfunding.
In the last few years I have learned how much a recording would cost, how much money my experience in a studio would save me, the pros and cons of what kind of packaging to use, I have dealt with numerous marketing representatives from mainstream radio, and online media and i have done extensive research on what businesses have done to reach their goals and what obstacles that were in the way.
After finding all of this out I have decided what steps I'm going to take to convince the general public to back me up on my next Album. And the first one is to showcase my ideas in short video clips and drawings. Please take a look at the videos and whatever related postings I have about the project on my blog.
Look, I'm really sorry that Justin Bieber got busted for doing what a kid his age does. Acts like an asshole and has fun doing it. Does it really have to be the most important thing on Twitter? I have a new hobby. Its called Hash tagging and this is what ill see in the searchs on Twitter: Justin Come To Turkey On The Holidays; Justin Come To Spain; Free Bieber and so on. As I write this I'm watching "All That Matters" by Justin and this is what I hear and see: Pitch correction on a boyish voice(lots of it), crappy drums, and the video shows a little kid (played by Justin) making out with some hot model.
I know youth has its heartthrobs of any generation; Rudolph Valentino, The Beatles, Leif Garrett, New Kid On The Block and Peewee Her.... I'm sick of this shit! Have your precious fucking Justin. If you're a Bielieber, please keep this in mind: 1) He is not going to look like that forever, 2) I have been in a recording studio enough times to know that this guy needs thousands of dollars invested into his voice so he can sound that crappy, 3) That dude probably spends a lot of time getting ready just to leave the house. From the looks of that mug-shot it looks like he practiced what he would do if he got busted.
Just remember the cool indie music going on. We might not end up on TV after getting arrested but I can tell you that this indie musician is trying.
For those of you who talk to me on a regular basis you know when it comes to me getting my work out to the world, the net is as important as a stage. When Im not updating my site or working on music that will quiet a loud room, I'm looking at numbers. I like numbers because they don't lie and as they become more available with stats on Facebook and my website I use them as a compass for seeing if I am going in the right direction with reaching out to people. I try to do things a little more than other artists do like updating my website on a daily basis and participating on video sites more and talking to potential fans through Facebook and Twitter. Feeling good about connecting with people through music is very important to me so I like to feel as comfortable as possible when doing so.
This leads to my next topic, my podcast. I wanted to do it 5 days a week but that's impossible. I want to showcase the talents of other artists in a cool way that makes the listener come back excited for the next one and unfortunately I can't do that on the edge of my seat. I'm not that cool, yet. And I'm not feeling the numbers I see on the attendance (or hits on the podcast). So with that I'm going to have the attitude that WED had when California Adventure opened and the public yawned. I'm going to retrace my steps and take some time to make it better. That does not mean you should stop coming over to see my silly digital antics. I will still have new stuff everyday and thats because I work hard to progress musically,artistically, emotionally, physically and now more than ever spiritually. Financially thats a new blog.
Please look at the older blog called "Why Im Not A Blog Person But I Do It Just For You"
As of January 1st the Open Mike Podcast will be on 5 days a week. You can also still find me on The Mike Indie Show at Berkeley Liberation Radio on Sundays from 10-noon Pacific time.
It's Christmas. If you enjoy being an asshole to people you can still be one. All I ask is that your nice to just one person. You win huge points if your nice to someone you can't stand. I think that's what Jesus would want.
Last night I was asked what I was grateful for. I thought about it and I'm grateful for my aluminum Christmas tree. Christmas could be a hard time of year for me because Christmas Day a long time ago was the last time I saw my mom and Christmas Eve around 8 years ago was last time I saw my sister alive. That cheap ass aluminum tree to me is the symbol that everything's going to be okay. And that I'm going to be ok.
If you throw yourself completely into something like music, comedy,writing or any kind of performing arts there's going to be times when you go to bed feeling like crap about yourself. However when you're in bed feeling horrible ask yourself "What feels worse, me feeling this way trying or if I didn't try at all?"
"Mike Glendinning is a relentless guitar explorer taking the guitar into new and uncharted territory. His playing has the three T's ... tone, taste and timing. Its going to be interesting to see where he takes us. I for one look forward to the journey!"~George Cole
"Glendinning's music comes from someone who loves what they do--and it shows. Words I'd use: unaplogetic. skillful. commited. guitarful." ( Not sure if that last is a word, but it should be.)~Blake Jones
"Mike Glendinning is an amazingly sensitive player who possesses a tremendous amount of precision, knows his way around the fretboard and has an impeccable sense of time."~ James Conrad
What I want to know is what will it look like when a 80 year old man is wearing Depends in a nursing home, playing his Kramer guitar with a Floyd Rose tremolo system, doing sweeps at 200 BPM. Let's see if the nurses form a line to change his bedpan.
When will grandma stop waring that fucking latex dress? Who's going to grow the balls and tell her she shouldn't go to Dennys wearing it anymore.
Will Kiss open the first full service Rock N Roll retirement facility complete with a mosh pit that is wheelchair accessible? In 20 years its going to be Interesting ladies and gentlemen.
Starting January 1st The Open Mike Podcast will be up 5 days a week. I will be looking for talent for the shows. If you have music, comedy or your just à silly freak I want to hear from you.
I'm going to talk more about my Drop A tuning shenanigans. Yes you can give the effect of a bass player accompanying you, yes it COULD be very limiting when it comes to voicings and no it doesn't have to be.
So, how do you make the most of this tuning? It's not as hard as you think but if you think about it it is kind of hard.
Step One: Know your fretboard.
StepTwo: when wanting a chord above a bass note try using notes in the key your in. It can be inverted chords of using a bunch of notes in the key your playing in.
I hope that helps understanding the song I was talking about in the last blog. Oh now for the perversion part of the song "Raising Daisies, Making Love"
Less is more, if you want it done right you have to do it yourself, bla bla.... On my latest YouTube video I give a birds eye view of how I play bass and rhythm guitar at once. "Been there done that" or "Joe Pass already did that dip shit" you say...dude just watch the fucking video.... was that hard to do? So in this blog I'm taking out some of the "mystery" of what I'm doing. I'm telling you now if you tell a guitar tech what I do they will beg you not to do it. I drop the 6th string to A. AADGBE is the tuning. Play with it and if I see that people dig the video and blog then I'll talk about what I do with chords. Why am I sharing a secret? Because I'm already plotting the next step to the evolution of my playing. So in 6 months everyone will be playing drop A using jazz chords sporting a beard and using the F word between every sentence.
If Jingle Bells was a song I could play in July than I would give a shit about playing christmas parties. This is the process....
A series of acions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end.
And when in this process, getting the gigs (Most of them are getting hired to play on street corners if weather permits) learning the songs, dragging equipment across town, parking 8 blocks away from where the city wants you, playing peek a boo with the rain and the "Particular end"? Homeless people screaming at me and the cops not doing shit about it. Pass. Maybe I should show up at a pub in june and play "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" and see what happens. Maybe a bar fight, crying, maybe fighting and crying. If you like playing holiday music then more power to you. I'm going to stay home with an mp3 player.
I spell so bad that people who cant spell ebonics make fun of me. For those who follow me on the net you will see comments that I make and it seems at times my IQ fluctuates at times. Well what your are seeing is my wife "Editing" what I write on the net. Everyone sucks at something and I suck at spelling. I have seen that most people who excel in spelling and grammar usually lack empathy and have the social skills of a dead house plant. So lets make a deal, you can call me uneducated, white trash and I can call you a pompous know it all that probably has no real friends.
This is my first entry in a while. I was trying to avoid posting blogs all together but looking at the traffic numbers on my site it gets viewed a lot. So, as they say do what they want and the rest come with less effort. This is what happened since the last post, I have had a radio show, started a pod-cast, left the radio show to start a new one and did all within a month in a half.
Im not going to bore you with the details of everything but it has been everything but boring around the house. I have very little free time now and thats fine with me.
I'm in week 3 of my podcast and I am still trying to experiment with a format that is fun for the listener. It features other indie artists along with my music. Once in a while I get to interview other artists hoping that the listener will hear a story that will help them make a right decision for moving their craft forward.
To check out my podcast just click on "Podcast" on this page and to check out the radio show click on http://berkeleyliberationradio.net/ I'm on sundays 10am-noon pacific time. Oh, maybe I should tell you what I do during the show. I play the best of the podcast and play some extra music. I also have live guests at times. I guess its safe to say the radio show is still developing.
Until next time
30 people are in the audience and 25 of them are yelling, laughing, shouting among themselves but the other 5 are into what the performer is doing. What does the act do? Take away the quality time the musician has with potential fans, and friends or does he stop in the middle of a song and ask people to quiet down? Yeah its rude of the 25 but lets face it, is it worth the energy to tell people to mind their manners? And also considering that maybe a bunch of the people were listening to you to begin with but a loudmouth started a conversation with the person and he or she don't have the guts to tell the other person to well, SHUT THE FUCK UP! The truth is as performers we don't know what to expect from a crowd at any given day. I struggle with this a lot.
Over the weekend I played 2 different states and was in this kind of situation. I usually would stop a song or shout at the person while i am playing "How are you?" It worked sometimes. but this time I did something different. When I had the attention of 5 people in a crowded room I just made eye contact with them. I played my music like they were the only people in the room. Some time later after the performances I checked my website stats and noticed something interesting. The number of MP3 plays we're higher than normal.
So in a crowded room with loud, drunk people look for that one person who is really enjoying your work. Go talk to them after you are done playing. Exchange facebook info. Doesn't it make more sense to get one fan who will be one for a long time or have the last word with a group of people who don't care what your first word was?
Things are moving along with the songs. I'm arranging a few covers with hopes to catch some new ears and turn some heads. Once I get a nice solid set list together I'm going to hit the jam nights and check out a drummer and bass player. People have been asking why I don't have a regular band and the answer is very simple: independence. I worked hard for my skill so if another musician decided to act out or be unreliable the show will go on. To gain this kind of confidence it involved being outside of my comfort zone many times. I'm hoping to find other musicians who share my story.
It seems to do well for other bands. Im only going to put up half of albums and see how its received. Ill put older CD's up in the next few months.
Not all songs are meant to play live and unfortunately I don't find this out after months of rearranging and rewriting a tune. As a performer I feel there is a fine line of doing what I want and giving the audience what they want. That is the reason for all the open mics i play. The loudness of the crowd, the comments I get after a performance, and the connection I get with people while playing are all the things I pay close attention to. I'm taping more of the stuff I do now so I can go home and see what needs work. I'm not looking for perfection. I want to feel like I do the best i can in any given situation. After investing lots of time on the net to connect with people through my music, I learned that a lot of people are still looking for the human connection of a live performance. What does that mean for me? Another thing that is going to take a lot of work: balance, which I suck at. The correct mixture of things for every given day. Wish Me Luck.
I was telling my wife about a lady who talked as loude as she could threw my set one night. After I was done the lady said "you sounded great" I said "you yelled threw every fucking note I played" than she said "I was talking and listening at the same time." My wife laughed at the story and said "I hope she ain't seeing a tharapist. Boy that would be a piss away of money"
I was walking down the street and saw an old lady shoot a snot rocket from her nose. She looked around to see if anyone was watching and as she looked at me I busted up laughing. I never seen a granny move so fast. Haha
This is a post I put up on facebook after playing a set at the Bistro in Hayward, CA. "A kid yells over my set than tells me how much he enjoyed the music. The young man is to old to spank" I liked Alan K Liptons response..... One of the best comeback lines I ever heard from a performer: "Listen, man, I just have 20 minutes up here to make an asshole of myself, but you have the rest of your life."
Im out hitting the open mic music circuit once again testing out a set list that I hope is captivating to an audience. I test songs in front of many kinds of people and so far I am pleased with the feedback and results.
It took a while but I'm pleased with how things are turning
out with the new song's. I wrote two versions of each song.
One version with a band and the other "singer songwriter"
The singer songwriter version takes longer to practice
becouse it involves a lot of finger picking and walking bass
lines. People seem to dig it. Soon it will be time to start
viewing my recording options. I know I want to do the guitar
and vocals at home however I'm torn on how to present the
I think of the albums that influenced me like, And Justice
For All, A Downward Spiral and House Of The Holy just to name
a few and I always loved how the drums sounded. I'm going to
be very picky about that.
I'm just happy that I have one more thing in place so I can
go to the next step and that's fundraising.
I did 2 open mics last night. I have what I feel is a very solid setlist I feel that the final judge is a bunch of people to play it for. I'll be doing this more often to fine tune things.
Smart phones have a ways to go. If Hostbaby wants to make my life easey they would let me edit this site in the phone. What a pain in the ass.
I am happy to show you the intro to the new album that is getting ready for production.
I am working on a lot at this time. I'm getting closer to the finishline with the rewrites to the new songs and I am pleased with the response from the crowd with some of the songs. I'm planning a fast trip to OR next month and unfortunately Im not hitting the road as much as I want. Next month I will be performing at the Festival Of The Suds 2.
I don't get posts like this on my facebook page much!
You got the news on www.mikegrungejazz.com first.
I started working on rewriting the last song on the new album. After that I practice it a million times and play it in font of people whenever I can. That easy.
Over the years I have been blessed with having many teachers. I have also been blessed with a mind that don't give a shit about the rules.
I'm out playing a few open mics this week to see how people like the new tunes. I have made a few changes to parts of the songs and I will not know if it was a good idea until I play out some more.
Plan on seeing another video up soon about the making of the new album.
Nothing special to report. Working on new music and putting a live set together.
My friend Max Newton asked me to be the featured at the Open Mic that he hosts with JC Torbillion. Since he has not made rude remarks on the net for a good year, I thought "Shit, Why Not!" At this event I was joined by Robert Leigh on Banjo and Sven Stalman on....... Okay, he told me what it was but he kept puling all these horns out of a bag like that old Luckys grocery store commercial from the 80's. Remember that? He had one horn that could play one key and not the other and another horn that could play another key but not a certain key. So just to fuck with him I played a song that modulates between 2 keys the horn can't play. And you know what? He pulled it off. I'll have that video up soon. The one I have up now is Robert and I playing the song "Cure."
Last night I played at the Hight Street Station open mic hosted by my friend and killer guitar player Larrie Noble.
On May 4th, I am the featured act at Cafe Yesterdays open mic with hosts Max & JC. I want to make it a tradition to do my song "Sun King" as the last song and also as a jam. If you want to jam with me on the song than go ahead and learn the song and come on over to 1122 University Ave in Berkeley, at 6 PM.
The Bay Area has a lot of people who make music. I get to hear about 40% of them. I could check them all out but then i cant make my own music. I do believe everyone has one great song in them. Well, my friend Wilson has a bunch and before I share his bio and links I want to share a video of my favorite song of his.
With a distinct singing voice and folk/blues influenced guitar playing, Wilson's songs are often reflective and introspective. He began honing his craft at the Freight and Salvage Open Mic and performing the ocasional coffeeshop gig. He was a 2008 & 2009 APAture artist and featured performer at Studio Rama's GoHana events. His self titled EP was released summer of 2012 and could be purchased at wilsonwong.bandcamp.com.
Oh well! At least i lost 30 pounds. I found a diet that works great for me. Its called "Don't eat so much and go for a fucking walk." diet.
Sorry for not posting for the last few days. One night I was told about a great video editing app on my phone and experimented with a few things. I'm not very happy with what I found. If your good at making movies on your phone, e-mail me.
In other news, I have been working on writing new music.I'm also getting a plan together for what I need for a fundraiser for the next album. By the time I need a video for the project pitch, I'll have this thing mastered.
Hi Guys, I have not forgotten about you. Been rewriting tunes and between that, the family, and taking care of a health issue, I have had little time to do much on the net but say hi to folks. The next album I'm working on is a lot different than any thing I have written because this is the first group of songs that will not only sound great with a band but I am also arranging them for a solo act. In the future you will see me talk about the songs and performing them on video. I have been taking the copy written music to open mics to see how the audience responds.
As soon as the songs are all written I will start taking the steps for the Kickstarter campaign. One big obstacle for the campaign is a video that is catchy for potential investers to see.
Happy Easter Guys
You will see me talking about this more. I did 6 albums but I never did one the way Im going to do this new one. I will be talking about the Journey on the blog a lot.
I like playing other towns outside the bay area because it gives me an idea of how popular trends are that I notice in my area. In this video I talk about it a bit.
What the hell is going on with my fucking internet connection? Okay lets see if it works this time. First off check out Tiki Houseman at www.tikihouseman.com not only does she have a new CD coming out but on her website she blogs about some things that don't get talked about in other blogs or books in the music industry. Her album " I Like The Freaks" covers many genres. Ill write more on this soon. I guess its fuck with Mike day with the web provider.
As some of you may know I did some session work last month. At this time the recordings are not available for a bit but producer, musical arranger, and a man of many hats Mathias Miller gave me the okay on talking a little about it. This is his statement from a e-mail he sent me.
"Below are the folks on the songs you recorded on. Medella Kingston did most of the writing on these, I wrote about 20% but I did all the arranging, mixing, etc.
Mike Glendinning was recorded through a Tech 21 Sansamp 10 watt, with no mics, xlr'd into a vintage Sound Craft Board for that wondrous British EQ, and also recorded direct simulatenously using a valvulator.
M2 aka Mathias Miller is a composer, producer, guitarist and a member of Omnesia. Other artists M2 has worked with at M2 Musik Pub include:
Medella Kingston: Vocalist for Omnesia
Mike Glendinning: Cameo On Guitars
Eric Slick - drums - discovered by Adrian Belew at a Philly School of Rock concert where he and his twin sister Lisa Slick (bassist) teamed up with Adrian to perform Zappa's San Bernardino and King Crimson's I'm a Dinosaur. Eric has played in the Adrian Belew Power Trio, with Ween and with Project/Object (a Zappa cover band that always features ex-Zappa musicians), he's played with Tony Levin and lost out to the porcupine tree percussionist to be the second drummer in the latest King Crimson lineup.
Stephen Goodwin - bass (Vicious Rumors, Mad River)
Tal Ariel - keyboards and synths(Great Beast, Riley Tolstedt, Mingo Lewis, Zigaboo Modeliste, Smokedaddie)
Phil Bennett keyboards and synths (Starship, Steve Lukather, Alex Skolnick, Fee Waybill, Yngwie Malmsteen, Pat Travers and Gary U.S Bonds)
More on this soon guys."
"We saw him playing in a Laundromat in Oakland." That was how I was introduced to a large crowd in Fresno,CA. I was opening up for Blake Jones And The Trike Shop in the Full Circle Brewery (they make some killer rootbeer) at a Food Not Bombs charity show.
All you have to do is watch Blake Jones and the Trike Shop perform 20 seconds into a set and see they are not your avrage "Pop" band. Just watch this video.
Seeing them live, you are at first going to be overwhelmed by the perfection of sound that comes at you. The 2nd thing you notice is no weak links among the players. Of all the years of seeing pop bands live, Blakes Jones and the Trike Shop has to be my top 10 most memorable acts.
They seem to do be doing well in central CA but do come up to the Bay Area from time to time. If you don't want to put on your pants they would love to see you on the net: www.blakejonesmusic.com
This is a short video of me talking about how to deal with solos in a guitar, vocals performance.
Just a reminder that the net can only help so much. Get off your ass and go meet people. Go to shows, play open mics, play what you can. Facebook, and Twitter is just a tool. It cant replace face to face talking.
And that is exactly what you need to get people to follow you. I had fun with this. Anything goes on this one. This might take a few entrys to cover what is going on with this site. First off, I have a hard time believing that Twitter is almost as popular as Facebook. I do like the straight to the point concept of it. But you have to be very creative with what you say because you don't have that many characters to work with. If you work it well, people will find you. I have a friend who can translate German to English. I also have a friend following me named "B*$*$ I be dat nigga." I'm curious on how that looks on his social security card. So, you check out tweets and lets say you're following 2001 people. If you don't have at least 2001 followers, you are cut off from sending any more requests to prevent spam. That can get tricky. So far, this is what I have done to get followers. 1) Go on the Reverbnation band page and follow the group by hitting the "follow" button and hope they do the same. The problem with this is that you can't see if their Twitter account is active, so you might waste a follow on an empty Twitter page. I am constantly trying to get followers because it does help with your Reverbnation ranking. From what I have seen, I do not have nearly the participation I get from Facebook. More soon.
This is Bluegrass like you never heard it. Robert Leigh (Drummer for the bay area rock band The Happy Clams) on banjo and David Tholfsen (From US Saucer) on guitar. If your not into bluegrass and want to get into it but don't know where to start their album "Well Well" is a great place to start. Mandolin monster Roger Kunkel does some very cool work on this. If I could tell you to just check out one track to give you an idea what they do check out there cover of "White Rabbit".
I hope 2012 was a good year for you and 2013 is even better. For January I have some exciting updates on www.mikegrungejazz.com. My music is now on bandcamp; http://mikeglendinning.bandcamp.com/album/psychotic-america. Last year I released some children's songs that were recorded for the enjoyment of parents and kids alike. http://mikeglendinning.bandcamp.com/album/the-adventures-of-the-zoester-and-gee-gee-the-wonder-bear
For you folks in central California I will be playing a charity show for Food Not Bombs at the Full Circle Brewery in Fresno on January the 20th. More info at www.mikegrungejazz.com/shows
Later this month I will be doing a little session work and I will have recordings for you guys next month. Be sure to check out my blog at www.mikegrungejazz.com because I try to update it when I can.
Have a great day.
So this is what I will do differently in 2013. I'm not going to release an album for a while. I'm just going to release singles. I'll try it for a while and see how that works. I spent 2012 recovering from a health issue and now I'm doing better. Plan on seeing me around the Bay area a lot more; not to mention the road again. In 2012 I had only a handful of guitar students because I wanted to focus on feeling better. In 2013 my goal is to have my max amount of students again. Another thing I keep promising myself I would do better, and I'm using the new year as an excuse, is staying on top of my mailing list.
I hope 2013 finds you all many blessings.
For me, 2004 was a huge question mark. Just a few years before, the local paper and phone calls were involved in finding other musicians. E-mails were still kind of a luxury. For the tech savvy type there was only Craigslist; a digital orgy of posts and insults that was used for information and entertainment. I would spend a good part of my morning watching the bulldogs patrol the bulletin boards. They would correct grammar and accuse people of being spammers. Spammer is a term used very loosely in my opinion. If you are not called that at least once, chances are you're not really pushing your music on the net.
One day, a friend I met on Craigslist introduced me to Myspace. At this point in time it was only a year old or so. I had never seen anything like it. I could put music up and anyone around the world could hear it. I read posts of people calling it a marketers wet dream. That was true to a point. For me it was my first real lesson on how marketing works. When it came to getting my music out to the masses, I learned what worked and what didn't work. If you did it right, the rewards were: gigs, CD's sold, new friends and placement in movies (thats a whole other blog). People telling you off was the downside. Someone could easily act like a dick because they didn't have to confront anyone to their face. Some people tried to tell me in very colorful ways that they were uninterested in my music. They had lots of time on their hands to tell me they just didn't like me. Even though Myspace was so cool, it had 2 huge flaws to it. No stats; i.e. no numbers to tell you if you're doing things right.
I have not used Myspace as a form of communication in a while. Lets just say that people used the same concept I did and took it to a whole new level. I hear rumours that it is making a big comeback. I hope so. My advice is to join Myspace, toy with it and see for yourself wether it is the right thing for you. Some artists can use Facebook, Myspace, and other music promoting sights and still make music. I'm not one of them. If you are in a band than you can have each member run a page at a social networking site. So those are my thoughts on Myspace. In the next blog, I'll be talking about Twitter and what I found out about using that for exposure.
How do you get a bunch of people to your show in the SF Bay Area? Tell them its an Open Mic and there will be a documentary film crew taping. Its a shitty joke but there is some truth to it. I'm starting to hit Open Mics again around here because I miss playing out and its a great way to network but it drives me up the wall what some people will do for attention. At these things I have seen people do just about everything but urinate, defecate and fornicate on stage and even if I saw that it wouldn't bother me. What drives me up the wall is how people confuse with "Open" mic with "Free" mic. And what I mean by that is you go up with a song that you spent hours writing and practicing. When it is time to play it in front of strangers you hit the first chord, then the 2nd, 3rd, 4th etc. Then, all of a sudden you hear a drum set. You look over to see someone you didn't ask to play with you banging on the kit and not knowing the song and not knowing the changes. Or the asshole with a harmonica. This is a special kind of dick because they show up to this with their case of 12 harmonicas with all 12 keys and they find out what key you are in by blowing all 12 one at a time. Then in the middle of the song blowing into the thing over your singing. I have seen it more than I like to admit. Don't get me wrong, there are some great musicians at these things cutting their teeth, trying out new material and making a name for themselves. There are also some people who spent $100 at guitar center and $20 on a gram of bud thinking they are the greatest thing since the electric chair. I had to vent. Have a nice weekend.
If you are enjoying my blogs and music please feel free to purchase my song of the month at http://mikeglendinning.bandcamp.com/track/swine
This song is 50 cents only for the month of December. Thats half off of all my other MP3's Thank you for you're support.
Okay, so you figured out what social site works best for you. You have your MP3's up on I-tunes. You know your target audience, right? Well, if that is a head scratcher for you, this is how I used Reverbnation. Those stats are about to come in very handy. For one week pick a genre each day that you feel would dig your music. Some people label themselves straight up as Rock, Rap, Jazz, etc. Well, it was not that easy for me. I spent a good week or so, checking pages of a certain genre to see what the outcome was. For starters, I would go to Rock and click on 30 bands. Make sure they are active on the site. You can do this by seeing how many plays they have on the rite side of their profile page. A day after you are all done, check out your control room. Here you will see your Band Equity (Don't plan on buying a car with this). Also, fans you gained, daily plays and widget hits (more on widgets soon). The numbers will tell you what you're doing right or wrong. Who likes it; who kind of likes it and who doesn't like it. Leave comments for the people you're checking out. At times they might mention what you sound like. Now, if you have a website, put a widget on it. Place it in all your social media pages. Myspace, Facebook, etc. It will help you follow traffic.
I thought this social media thing was going to take a few parts but its not. Stick around. I'm determined to share my experiences the best I can.
Social Media Part 4:
For a minute let's talk about distribution. Where to start? I recommend the Indie Bible http://indiebible.com/ for about $20 and you get 2 updates. Its all digital now and thats very cool. When I started getting it 10 years ago it was the size of a small phone book. You can look up CD, MP3 distribution, radio stations, reviewers, all kinds of stuff. I use CD Baby to sell my CD's and they got my music to I-tunes and a bunch of other digital distribution stores. Another really cool digital distribution site is bandcamp http://bandcamp.com/. Reverbnation has a deal like that too. If you are just starting out I would take what time is needed to research Reverbnation because for a beginner they can really get you on the right foot. They offer a website, a smart phone app for your music, digital distribution, all kinds of stuff for a price. If you have covers in you're repertoire, you need to contact the Harry Fox Agency. If your music is not copy written there are many theories on how to do it but the best legal way is with the U.S. Copyright Office at http://www.copyrightassociates.com/
In Part 5 I'm going to pretend we got the following done, 1. Recording, 2. Copyrights, 3. knowing how to make MP3's, 4. A Facebook, Reverbnation, Twitter, Myspace, Youtube, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, CDbaby, ETC. All are optional but in my experience the more I got into this the more help I needed.
I got up this morning not making a sound and thinking "Good the girls a still sleeping I can get stuff done." I was ready to get to 2 days of e-mails and than I hear "DADDY COME GET ME!" Little does my kid know Im getting a large pet crate for her for christmas. If that works well Im going to get one for the wife. Getting my kid in hers will be a challenge but getting my wife in hers will be easy. All I have to do is put a Reeses Peanut Butter Cup in the back of her crate and she will go in with no questions asked.
I think someone broke into my garage last night. Its so thrashed I can't tell. The door was open and it just didn't look normal. If thats the case I'm more pissed they didn't take everything and just took a few things. If the thugs broke in, took a look and said "Fuck this shit" than that sucks. My crap is just as good as anyone's.
Q. What does a blonde do with her asshole in the morning? A. Pack his lunch and send him to work.
At this point you've started your Twitter, Reverbnation, and Facebook fan pages: what about Myspace? These things seem to change every day, so where do you start? Ask someone. Ask another musician on the net what he uses. A good start is to check the top charts of Reverbnation and look at band stats on the lower rite. If the numbers look good like there is activity going on then look to the right. What do you see? If you like the looks of their progress then e-mail and ask how they are doing it. 90% of bands love sharing how they get their results. Now, lets talk about MP3's for a minute. Do you have a recording? Do you have it in an MP3 format? A lot of websites will tell you how to get music on your page. I use Switch to turn my music into what I need; mp3, aif, wav, ext. Go here to get the software http://www.nch.com.au/switch/index.html If you don't have music at all you have a lot of options.
1.Learn to do it yourself. This is very time consuming. The software for your computer is getting cheaper and easier to use.
2. Do it at a recording studio. Can't afford a session? If you look hard enough at nearby colleges or studios starting out you can get some kind of deal. You'll be surprised what you can find when you ask around.
3. Perform at an Open mic or at a club that records from the mixing board. Some places have great sounds and others not so great.
Next week we are going to look at the many options for music distribution.
"I got another one. I like the posts that say "Im sick of phony people, if you're phony drop me as a friend." WTF! LOL! Yeah someone is reading it going SHIT! My phony ass has to drop this person Im not real enough."
"I see more people doing PDA on facebook for example "Oh I love (Fill in the blank) soooo much. (Fill in the blank and thank god its not me) is soooo sweet." Okay....... well I certainly hope you did not spend all weekend with some scum bag that called you a bitch or a loser. I want to see something more realistic from you guys something like " We just celebrated our 10 year wedding anniversary or should I say his drunk ass did" or "$5 and I'll have enough money for that restraining order and a motel room for a week." Just a thought."
Q: What's the definition of an optimist? A: A guitarist with a mortgage.
"A rap artist checked out my music and sent me this message "Love the shit dope as fuck" HA! Im dope bitches"
"Why didn't anyone tell me today was "Old white ladies drive like assholes in their prius" day. Its either that or those cars don't come with breaks or turn signals."
Okay, so we have an outstanding gimmick that will wows the shit out of a total stranger and you know a few facts about your prospective listener. To the beginner, the best skill you can develop and will use for the rest of your life is developing a thick skin. There is an epidemic of folks talking crap to other people on the net and not having to look people in the face. I know some people who are addicted to it. They get a rush off of belittling people. Keep in mind, from my experience, most people who talk trash on the net, will not look you in the face when you run into them on the street. I think it's a new social disorder. Pill coming out for this soon ladies and gentleman. Now, back to what you came to my blog for, we are going to need 1) A Reverbnation band account. 2) A Facebook page for bands. 3) A Twitter account and last but not least a Web Site. If you don't have one, Reverbnation has a deal. I use Hostbaby. In the next segment we are going to talk about CD and MP3 distribution. If you don't have music to share with the world, don't worry. I will briefly talk about that as well.
Now, I want to share a childhood memory with you: The day when I learned how to spell "Shit." I was 5 and I went to my fathers parked car that had morning frost all over it and wrote in big letters, SHIT. Of course my older sister snitched on me to my parents and my father asked, " What else can you spell?" I said, "Cat and dog." My father said, "Oh great, you can spell cat shit and dog shit."
Mike Glendinning On Dealing With Social Media
I'm going to start this out like you are new to this. Keep in mind this is how I am doing it and there is no one way to network and get people into your music. Step one requires a simple question: What kind of Genre are you? Rock, Blues, etc... Now, the hard part. This took me a while to figure out myself. Pretend you're in a elevator with a stranger and you are going from 1st to 2nd floor. You engage in chit chat and the person asks what kind of music you play. Can you keep their attention so they ask where they can listen to your music on the internet? Thats a bitch, trust me. Step 2: find out what else your fans are listening to. That will be a big help and I will get into that in another blog. So I just sent you off with what I feel are the most important questions to get started.
Out of all my musician friends, I don't hear many of them talking about spending devoted time everyday hunched over the computer making sure their musical skidmarks have stained the underpants of the world. Off and on in future blogs I am going to talk about what I'm doing and what mistakes I have made and the correct things I did in music marketing.
If your reading this and you are putting time in to marketing your music online what are you doing? And if it worked how long did it take you to find out how to do it?
You miss crap like this...."How does she do it? She will not take a fucking nap. She has been up scince 6:30 in the morning and showing no sign of slowing down. I put her to bed and she keeps getting up from trying to take a nap. She will stay up till midnight too. God my wife is a pain in the ass."
"Took my kid to go see her great grandmother. My daughter cried " I don't want to see her!" I said "Shut up and keep digging."
"Im grateful that the obsession of lighting a bag of dog shit on my neighbors porch, ringing the door bell and running has been lifted from me by the grace of God."
"Im running into a new kind of rocker on reverbnation. I call them the 24 hour fitness rocker. They rock out and are advocates of outstanding health. They don't drink and do coke before a show they enjoy a salad and 20 minutes on the treadmill before rocking the house. Interesting....... God damn it where is my fucking redbull?"
"Some lady looked at a painting and said "For a 3 year old you daughter paints at a 2nd grade level." I said "No I painted that!"
From Grunge Jazz To Children's songs. Behind the logic of Mike Glendinning doing traditional children's music.
Here we go kids (young and old). It finally took me having a child of my own to get motivated to play these songs. I have been wanting to do a group of children's songs that adults and their kids could enjoy together. After three years I hit the record button. These are all traditional songs and when I was doing research on them I was amazed on the origins of the songs. Some are a testament to a very dark part of human history. Along with real instruments Guitar, Bass and Drums, I also used children's toys for precision on some songs. Some songs have guest appearances by Maria Claus-Rangel on backup vocals, and Robert Leigh on drums.
I'm not going to blow the plot for this song. Lets just say this song is about a woman who brings the term high maintenance to a whole new level.
Sometimes brilliance, love, selfishness and beauty combined can be the purist form of heresy. We now live in a time where we can split atoms, grow human ears on the side of mice, put the ingredients to life in a freezer for a rainy day. This song is about a man who tried to play the lover, the capturer and god all at once. I'm not the smartest man in the world but I know one thing; if you interfere with our creators way of doing things, they.... well . . . fall apart.
If you would like to check out other songs by me please got to the reverbnation, itunes, or CDbaby store to the left of this page
Even a fly can tell a story. Some of them live fuller lives than humans. I think there is a fly in all of us. I know for sure there will be flys in us sooner or later. No matter how smart or rich you are, strong or weak, happy or sad, found god or just a heathen; in the end, if your in a box, a pile of ashes, or a loved one finds an unorthodox way to keep your memory alive there is no way of getting away from them flys.
If you would like to check out other songs by me please got to the reverbnation, itunes, or CDbaby store to the left of this page
Not all cures heal. Not all diseases kill. It is a time of innovation and living in a world our great grandparents could only dream about. One man prefers the sunlight and another wants darkness. Some like the cool wind; others the scaulding sun. Some like maps and directions but others fear the responsibilities that come with the destination we are all here to travel to.
I take great pride in freezing emotion and time into sound. Some people who listen to this little song will try to relate to the story; others will simply understand. Some might take it home as a piece of art others will download this song as a souvenir.
Click this to hear "Lullaby For Zoe" or other songs. If you would like to buy the MP3 please choose the reverbnation, Itunes or CDbaby stores to the left.
This song is based on a letter I wrote to my daughter 3 months before she was born. When I found out I was having a child It didn't really hit me until about around the time I wrote the letter. In a way it was kind of a letter to myself telling me not only what kind of man I wanted to be but what kind of dad I wanted to be. It was kind of easy to write the song. All I had to do was pretend I was warning my girl about boys like me when I was a kid. The song is a reminder to her no mater what age she is that there is a certain way I expect her to respect herself. This song has instructions on how I hope she handles adulthood. When fatherhood frustrates me I play the song to remind me what my job description is as a dad. Enjoy.
Lullaby For Zoe is one of the songs from my Psychotic America EP
From the Album Mike Glendinnings "Random Acts Of Grunge Jazz"
(Note this song is available on CD Baby, Reverbnation, and itunes on the left of this page.)
I wrote it about a dream I had one night. A dream of serenity, peace, and humility. A dream I would not see come true for 8 years. Its a simple song that you can hear by clicking on reverbnation on the left of this page. The lyrics are accompanied by an easy blues format.
I wake up and the sun is in my room.
The sun promises me the pain will end soon.
I want to know when the sun kin was born.
When I walk down the road everyone travels.
And never look at the trees along the way.
I want to know when the sun king was born.
When I sleep in my bed.
In my sleep I praise him in my head.
I want to know why the sun king was born.
I think this is one of my most sought after songs because it freezes the despair and hope the human spirit can feel at once. I like the song because its a reminder that simplicity is the greatest seed for becoming a better person.
Writer to Frank Zappa: Have there been parts of your life that you've neglected because you've been absorbed in your music? Zappa: Well what am I missing? Do I regret not going horseback riding, or learning how to water ski? Well, no. I don't want to climb mountains, I don't want to do bungie-jumping. I haven't missed any of these things. If you're absorbed by something, what's to miss?
These videos have a theme. It took 4 years to tell this story on 2 different CD's. Psychotic America and Cr'ass. Im not going to tell you the concept of these group of songs. There are a few more songs on the 2 CD's that tells in more detail about this situation. On these 2 albums you hear 2 different story's my life as a musician trying to find my place in the world and experiencing what other people experience, Life, Death, Love and Hate. And then there is another story on these albums. A story that happened a long time ago..... generations ago. A story I will never forget.
Cr'ass here. Mike wants me to give you a heads up on a special online event on September 21st. We are going to invite you to a sneak peak to his new Children's Album "The Adventures Of The Zoester and Gee Gee The Wonder Bear: Children's Songs For Adults." The MP3's are not available for download and the CD is not available yet. Mike just wants to show his appreciation to his facebook friends by sharing a few tracks. This is how its going to work: You will get an event invite on facebook. To check the MP3's follow the link and enjoy. If you want to know when the album is available for purchase simply let him know through FB or join his mailing list on the page of the MP3's.
Please like me on facebook to get in on the fun.
Mc Donald's has one. Burger King has one. Jack In A Crack has one. Forest fires even has one. Im talking about a mascot. Meet Cr'ass the clay asshole. I just pick him up out of the garbage from a greyhound station. My wife and I are giving him room and board if he helps me promote www.mikegrungejazz.com. Cr'ass had former owners were stoners that were shaping him in to a penis than having there Pit Bulls play fetch with him. Glad to have you aboard my friend.My daughter and I decided to show him around at the Solano stroll. Between all the petitions to sign and booths of local politicians blaming other politicians as there policy. Cr'ass wanted to go home and watch Ren and Stimpy.
If you go to www.mikegrungejazz.com and click on MP3s for the New Album you will hear a song called "No Toilets" This song was written by Dan Lange and I. The words go like this.....
When I get rich I'm going to build a mansion with no toilets at all
and if you have to go just go where you want
The servants will take care of it all
The servants will take care of it all
In my house, I have no toilets
No toilets at all
When I was young and the plumbing was clogged I had no toilets at all
If I had to go I just go where I want
The neighbors would take care of it all
The neighbors would take care of it all
When the plumbing was clogged all day
I had No toilets
No toilets at all...
If you cant tell the song is about my vision of the American Dream.
Im here with a rare online interview with the legendary film maker Clint Eastwood
Me: Mister Eastwood thank you for doing this interview with me...
Me: Mr. Eastwood are you okay?
Me: Okay well first question is how do you feel about the press saying that your speech at the republican convention didn't leave a good taste in Florida or North Carolinas mouth?
Me: Okay next question if the republicans care for the welfare of America so much do you feel they could of used that window of time to talk about solutions rather than hear you complaining?
Me: Did I mention you sound like an old lady who broke her hip?
Me: Well with all due respect sir I am not famous like you so I don't have the luxury of pissing away other peoples time. Thank you for talking to me Mr Eastwood.
Alright turkeys see you soon on another installment on Mike Glendinning's BS blogs soon.
After last night I am happy to say my faith in the San Francisco bay area music scene has been restored. I did a show at the happiness Institute with other bay area bands last night and it was hosted by Joe Gapain. This guy is making a great effort to make an artist community that the public will respect. I have great respect for people who do that. To all my brave artistic brothers and sisters keep making art, keep making our world beautiful. And for those who see a musician play there ass off and ask what they do for work.....fuck you! For more info on where they take Happiness seriously click on this....
It was a warm April day back in 1988 when I came back from camp to find a shiny new Harmony Acoustic hiding behind my parents couch. The afternoon sunlight through the front window gave the brand new guitar a special glow. It took me about a minute to snap out of staring at this beautiful thing until I noticed the smell. A new guitar was something I never smelled before. Come to think of it this was the closest I had ever been to a guitar. I remember running into the family room with my new friend, turning on MTV to try to imitate what the guys were doing in the videos. I was 12 and my time was divided between watching Heart, Poison, Run DMC, Beastie Boys videos and playing my parents record collection which consisted of the Beatles, The Doors, BB King and Eric Clapton. My taste in music was something my parents approved of until on a warm summer day on a show called Closet Classic Capsules. I saw a video of a black man making weird sounds with his guitar and lighting it on fire. I was hooked. Add a little Led Zeppelin 4 months later, and it was all over. My story is just like most kids with a guitar. It was more fun than school work so I got grounded.I also got jealous girlfriends and shitty grades. I remember breaking my first string. It was a G string and I went 3 months with out it until my father caved in and got me one ( He actually got 3 because he too was embarrassed to ask a stranger for a G string). Thank God I wasn't using Ernie Ball at that time.
My parents blame music for me fucking up my life. I don't need any help I can fuck it up all by myself just fine. I don't need help thank you very much. I began teaching about 10 years ago and thought it was great. I was getting paid for something I was going to do around the house anyways. It was fun until guitar hero and rock band became popular. I was teaching a 9 year old a Hendrix song and asked him if he ever saw a picture of Jimi. The boy said no so I showed him. The father got exited and said "Look, its that black guy in the video game!" It didn't dawn on me how much trouble I was in until my students stopped practicing. I asked " Did you practice the song?" and the child said "No." I asked " What did you do all week?" He answered, "I got 100,000 on Guitar Hero. Back then I was drinking so I called my wife and asked her to put the vodka in the freezer. Times have changed.
Threw the years that I have been playing music I have made lots of fans and a few enemies. On this installment of BS blogs I thought it would be fun to share a few comments I have gotten threw the years. Please note some names have changed not to protect the jerk who said it but to protect my sorry ass from getting sued. Enjoy.
"God Damn Idiot" My Father when I was 15
"Security!" My wife when I asked her to Marry me.
"Im calling the police" Anonymous neighbor
"Im the one who called the police on you" Another anonymous neighbor
Tell you what: If Mike ever develops a sense of humor we're all goin straight to hell. His spin on the human experience is just plain scary. Killer guitar. Them Flies sound... Howard
Lawrence, Reverbnation artist
What is that in your picture? I can't for the life of me figure it out! But regardless, very unique and inspired material. Please keep at it! The Refusers, Reverbnation artist
There is true beauty in your music Mike and the guitar work is outstanding! I can't wait to catch your live show anytime..so keep me posted, ok? Delaney Simpson
A true Master guitarist!!! Exceptional originality with passion and gritt throughout!!! Vic Quinton
Now a full decade of playing out and sharing my music has not all been fun. Now lets hear from some mean spirited folks and the nasty phone calls they made to me that I turned into a dance mix. Put on your dancing shoes and get your theropist on your speed-dial for this big hit no one knows about. just click http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOMvjzhx_iY&feature=g-upl If you where wondering who kept calling me motherfucker in the song the cops traced it and said it was a 79 year old grandma.
Thank you for hanging out with me in my little corner of the net.
The story of Buttonwillow, Birthday MP3's and DNA tests. On my album Psychotic America: Lullabies and Necrophillia, there is a song called Buttonwillow. I wrote that song while my wife was pregnant with my daughter. I knew someday our kid was going to ask where she came from. So my wife and I have decided to tell her this story until she is old enough to put 2 and 2 together. Off of highway 5 going to LA, there is a small town called Buttonwillow where wild bunnies and babies run free on the hillside. People who want a child go there to find a baby to take home. My wife and I decided to take her home because she was the only one we could ketch. When we got home we got her shots and some diapers. And that is the bullshit story we will tell her until she's old enough. When we stop for gas she will see that there are no hills and no bunnies. Hell, you can't even sit on the pot in the restroom because someone missed. After all these years she will see why her father brings his own toilet brush to use in the Chevron bathroom. She is going to ask me how her mom got pregnant with her and I'm going to tell her the truth..... I don't remember! The only reason I know she is my kid is because most of my friends are African American. I know she is my kid because I saw her being born. A fork did not feel right in my mouth for 2 weeks after seeing that. For the first 2 months I only took her out at night because I was afraid that the old joke that someone might slap me was true. Thank God she stopped looking like a Chia Pet. Well, thats the story of that song. Thanks for hanging out with me in my little corner of the internet.
Laundromats and rock stars! No this is not a title to a Beck song. Before I go into why this is so bizarre and important I want to tell you a story of what happened to me back in 2007. On a thursday night at 11 pm the phone rings. Its an old friend of mine: Bob Medeiros.
He asked, "Mike, can you do a last minute gig?"
"Where?" I asked
In a cheerful tone of voice he said,"At a Laundromat in Oakland called Norge Laundry."
Without hesitation I said yes for 2 reasons. My chops were down and there is nothing like the unknown to keep you on your toes. Laundromat . . . Oakland . . . Anything could come from this. Within 2 minutes I was on the phone with a woman named Genny the owner of the place.
" What do you want me to wear?" I asked
"Just don't come naked, thats all I ask."
Who the hell is she to tell me not to come naked?
I played the gig and went home scratching my head about the situation. When I ran into Bob on facebook a few years later he was telling me how the shows at the Laundromat were a monthly thing featuring other artists. In June, Bob wanted to do a music festival at the Laundromat called "The Festival Of Suds." The first festival at a laundromat that I know about. On the bill were Bobs band The Clarences, Stallones Holy Roller, Paul Pot from the Happy Clams, Blake Jones & Trike Shop, me, The Tinnitans, and last but not least Tina Turner impersonator Deltrina Johnson. The show got some press and word got around about the festival. A month later something amazing happened.... Norge Laundry wound up in East Bay Express' "Best Of The East Bay" as a music venue..... A Laundromat!
In the Bay Area I'm seeing more of these "Weird Little Places" to play. In my opinion its given the bay area some charm that has been slowly disappearing. Another trend that I keep hearing about that I would love to take part in are house concerts. Is anyone really reading this? Am I just farting my 40 minutes away? Did I tell you I'm doing research on the kind of shopping cart I want when I retire? I already have a nice little place under the overpass on I-5 that I like a lot. Though there are no restrooms for a good quarter of a mile I can just get a shovel. I'm really into the Dollar store carts. No one will steal them. Its like driving a Pinto and parking it in Piedmont. No one will touch it because . . . . Shit I'm losing my train of thought.
Speaking of shows, I will be playing at the Hippie Gypsy Cafe in Berkeley on October 13th with the Tinnitans. I will keep all my web pages up to date on this because I'm going to get some guest artists to perform with me. I'm now starting to make plans to do road stuff next year. I miss doing that a lot. I'm going to start out doing California stuff, then work my way to Oregon and Washington. More on that as well. I miss Hollywood a lot. Its Berkeley without all the protests. However, LA is like the Bay Area in many ways. When I go there I'm just another asshole with a guitar.
Im already planning the next blog but I'm not going to tell you what it will be about. I'll give you this clue . . . What do you get when you shine your car with roadkill? Sleep on that and I will get back to you soon. Goodbye turkeys.
A business plan for an indie artist is like planning a vacation on a tropical island in a 3rd world country 13 years from now. But one thing is for sure. What does the music industry and the 1800 gold rush have in common? Its not the people digging for gold who made most of the money, it was the guys who sold the picks, shovels, the Levis, the booze etc.... Well thats where we are now in music. Do musicians make money? Sure. Is it hard to do? Yes. With all the artists on the net, guess who is happy? The people who are helping musicians get stuff out into the world. I got to take a class on music production from legendary jazz producer Orin Keepnews and one of the first things he said in the class was (keep in mind he has been around since they used shellac on tapes to record with) this is the most changes in the industry he has seen in recent memory. That class was over 3 years ago and making music and getting music out to people has changed a lot. I'm sure with all the blogs, books and seminars on this, if someone was going to stay on top of it they would not have time to use the restroom, let alone make music. The good news in what I have seen on popular sites like Youtube is that they are giving opportunities that did not exist when the site first opened. Around 2011 they saw there was money in advertisement using indie music. Some other sites are doing fair share programs that give the artist half of what that company makes in a month.
One new thing that most sites have that I am happier than a pig in shit about is the statistic features. A lot of musician friends of mine are overlooking it. I would've loved to know what worked back in the Myspace days. Another cool thing they have now that I remember complaining about not being accessible to me are widgets. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that its getting easier and harder to get ahead in music. It all boils down to writing good music and not expecting other people to do the dirty work for you.
Another cool thing about technology is drum machines. I know a lot of people are against them but the way I look at it is the thing does not show up to rehearsals drunk and it doesn't pick up on my wife. Good recording equipment is getting more affordable as well. Which is a good and bad thing. You could wind up with some good music or it could be like giving a blind guy a machete.
I'm getting questions on reverbnation like, " What inspired you to write and record Sun King", " Are you a self taught guitarist or did you take lessons?" and "Where did you get your inspiration?". All good questions.
I took lessons from a lot of rock, blues and jazz guitarists. Also, players who can play all 3. I spent years taking lessons then stopped taking them and doing the techniques my way. I also spend a lot of time hanging out with musicians who play different kinds of music. After getting all this info about music I feel like when it comes to writing and performing music I am putting a car together from different car parts from different models. Some say I can't do it but that just made me want to make it work even more.
Practice time is very precious to me. Now that I have a family I can't just play the guitar when I feel like it. When you have a child it is equivalent to having 6 dogs running in all different directions destroying everything in their path. I also go through what I call musical crushes. I'll get into a a type of music and play the hell out of it, get sick of it and go on to the next one. A horny 20 year old is a perfect metaphor.
Once again thank you for visiting my little corner of the net.
In the next blog I will be talking about the G spot. Is there any truth behind it or is it just another urban legend. Maybe I should send an e-mail to mythbusters.
I have been advised by many people to keep a blog. I'm not the blogging type for a few very good reasons. First, I'm a shitty speller. Throughout most of my childhood and adulthood, I have been targeted by pompous, overly educated, insecure morons. They use their college education to subsidize their insignificant genitals. It turns out after dealing with these morons their moms are the only ones who saw their members. Second, my life is boring. Besides music, do you really want to know how bad my 3 year old stunk up the house? If you like to read shit like this, your at the right place. If you want to read about sex, drugs, sacrificing virgins then I'm sorry to disappoint you. Well, I will keep you posted on my struggle do get my music to as many 7th graders as possible so I can ruin their parents dreams of their child going to law school. Enjoy and welcome to my little corner of the world.