It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To

¬†It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To
3 Short Stories Of Nightlife Nightmares (Hollywood Edition)

1. The Real Slim Shady : ¬†So a few years ago, my girlfriend at the time and I decided we wanted to throw an event in WeHo for our LGBT friends in a venue that was pretty much the perfect fit and vibe for what we were looking for in the party we wanted to produce. At this time pretty much all of the events we were attached to or producing were because of our networks, following and mailing list. You wouldn’t really catch us at something that was wack and didn’t have a diverse crowd of people dancing and having a good time. I can’t quite remember how we met with this guy who was advertising the space but we decided to roll the dice and check it out. Most new venues in LA don’t last long, I’d say a 3-5 year shelf life if they’re lucky, Hollywood/WeHo being even more difficult to maintain. So we go and meet up with this guy, he seems legit. Introduces us to the security, bar manager, bartenders, and proceeds to give us a complete walkthrough of every nook and cranny of the place. We were asking the right questions to¬†assess the situation while given the tour and he seemed to answer everything with the typical responses and expectations. Now at this time, we already had 1 or 2 other events going on in the following month or so, the majority of our funds were in the hands of others for deposits, almost like escrow on a house. So we were pretty tapped out, but we still wanted to do this party as the space was ideal and fit the criteria for our needs. Being that we were pretty much out of our own funds, it was a matter of getting sponsors who have been in bed with us for awhile with other functions, or asking one of our investors. We figured it was too short notice to hit up our typical partners and sponsors, so we got the money from 2 investors. She got 1 half of the bread together, while I obtained the other in lieu of them making a 10-15% on their investments. Having the money ready to go for the deposit on the space, we asked for a contract. The fact that we received the investment from 2 friends put more pressure and emphasis on us having a successful event. Saying as all of our other parties were very lucrative, we didn’t have any doubts about this one being anything but equal if not greater, and honestly we were really fucking excited to do something different. We get the contract for the space, negotiate the terms, kick it back and forth a bit until everything is correct and in order for us to feel comfortable with doing business with the space. After signing the contract, we send off the check as you typically would. At this point we’re ready to go, and start putting together the pieces of making the flyer, booking talent, setting up our marketing and promotional efforts, and generally getting all of our ducks in a row. About 3 weeks out from the event, we need some additional¬†amendments made and we spend about 2 days of not being able to get a hold of the guy. His social media is active, so I hit him up online to no response, a day after messaging him that we couldn’t get a hold of him. All of his social media accounts magically vanish, not responding to emails, phone is disconnected. Oh and keep in mind, we already gave him the $$$ to lock in the date. So at this point we start to sweat a little bit for obvious reasons, let’s not forget the fact that the $ came from (2) people who trusted us greatly adding more fuel to the fire of this whole scenario. I call the venue, apparently in the timeframe of our contract and now, the ownership of the club has changed hands, there’s completely new operators, and nobody seems to know the guy who wrote up a contract and put names of former owners ( who hadn’t been attached to the venue in months ). We look at their calendar, the night that we were looking at is booked with some other event. At this point, I kinda fall into private investigator mode. I type in his name to google, see some old flyers in google images that have his logo on them. I start to look up the other companies/logos I see on the flyers beside his and begin reaching out to all of these random strangers with this whole story. The calls and messages generally started like ” Hello, I know this is going to sound really weird, but do you happen to know of anyone by the name of xxxxxxxx? with a promotional company called xyz?” the first three people I contacted literally had responses like “Wow, that guy again? yeah I know of him, he owes my brother xyz amount of money, if you see him to fuck off ” another answer was like ” Yeah, I’ve got a restraining order against him, he owes my sister a ton of money ” the calls just kept getting more and more hostile as I dug deeper and deeper. At this point, the event is essentially paused til we get to the bottom of the situation, but more importantly was us retrieving this money, otherwise we’d be on the hook for it. I keep going through these old event flyers and looking at the talent, the logos, the hosts, the clubs, and keep contacting more and more people to hear more of the same stories of essentially this guy ripping off about a dozen people, not paying back a cent and getting away with it. Now, I didn’t grow up with money, I’ve worked hard my entire life for everything that I have and I’ve never been the type to just “charge it to the game” or “let someone off the hook” because “it’s Hollywood” or “I mean what do you expect with people in nightlife or promotion”. ¬†I have to admit, I was pretty intrigued to hear all of the different people and stories of how they all managed to get taken advantage of by the same guy, and how nobody really gave a damn about catching the guy. Meanwhile I was hot on the case and building a pretty hefty story, logging these conversations, saving everyone in my phone as (Scammed) – Which mindfully, they still are in my phone if you’d like to see next time you’re around ūüôā ¬†even some of these people I’ve since built friendships with! Anyways, back on track – so he still is off social media and hiding, we don’t really have to cancel the event with the venue because they don’t know who this guy is and there’s nothing on the calendar or contract anyways besides forged signatures and other phony information. After about a week his phone is back on, so my girl and I took it upon ourselves to call him every night between the hours of 10pm til 5am about 30x anyways because we were already up and it was no skin off our back. Eventually he said he’d meet up with us with the money after hearing countless voicemails and text. We literally filled his inbox to the point that it couldn’t take anymore messages. We agree to meet at The Falcon in Hollywood to get our money back. I end up waiting in the cold for this fool for almost 3 hours, eventually I see him show up in his pickup, drive by slowly, he sees me and bolts off. You could imagine how frustrating this is to be chasing your money like this. At this point, I start calling up the big homies infuriated explaining the situations, and seeing who’s interested in handling this shit in a not so polite manner. I look back at emails we exchanged, check the source and I’m able to find the IP address he was corresponding from. I plugged in that IP address and managed to find his place on Googlemaps! Low & behold, in the google street view screenshot, the same truck he rolled by The Falcon with and originally picked up the cash from and met us in was there, blocked in by 2 other vehicles in front of the garage on the driveway. At this point, we had already been more than patient. I did reverse phone lookups and more and managed to get a hold of his sister and mother. At this point, I sent over a cropped image of the google street view of his place, said we had already spoken to both his mother, sister and ex-girlfriend with the restraining order and he’ll either get us our money and some extra for the effort or we’ll be by his place to …take what we need to in order to make up for the wasted time, money and recover the balance. Surprise surprise, dude calls us back almost immediately and asks us to meet him in downtown Whittier at some sushi spot. I explain the severity of the issues at hand and state that if he’s not there this time and we don’t get our money returned in this attempt, we will be taking it into our own hands to solve the problem. Fast forward, we’re sitting at the sushi place eating, dude shows up in a brand new tux, gives us our money and then some… says maybe two words. neither of which were my bad or I’m sorry and then just disappears. Annnnnnnnd that’s all folks ūüôā so the bottom line, be very careful who you do business with, keep records, and cross-reference people. It never hurts to research the business and people you are intending on doing business with before actually doing business, that’s just being smart. plain and simple. Don’t Trust Anyone.

 

2. And For My Next Trick!¬†Ugh, so this was like 2011 or 12 I think? I launched a series called Westside Wednesdays at Dim Mak Studios in Hollywood with some kids I was helping with parties, we featured Warm Brew, Andre Nickatina, YG, Casey Veggies, and Pac Div alongside several other acts. Also had my homies from HamOnEverything on a bill or two – crazy to see how far we’ve all come. I’m only going to focus on one of those shows, because there was just all kinds of fuckery throughout this whole place. Let’s start at the beginning, so let’s imagine you just drove across town to catch YG who was a buzzing artist and blowing up right before your eyes. Now I can talk further about the bullshit I had to go through to even “make the show go on” … like calling my friend Nocando who had a connection to a guy named Brandon who was managing him at the time with Stampede, but we’re just gonna skip over that part and focus on the stupid club shit. Right, so imagine you drove across town to see this artist, you wait in line for 30-45mins while nobody is inside, you finally get to the front. They ask you for ID, then take it it from you, while simultaneously pushing you forward into the venue, so by the time you got upstairs and the bartender asks you for your ID – you realize that you somehow have managed to lose it between the doorman who asked for it prior, and the bar. Sounds like the start to a good night, right? So imagine getting back downstairs and the head / lead guard has your ID, and says they found it on the ground. Furthermore, they say you’re not allowed inside the venue (after paying) without an ID. Then they say if you want to get your ID back, you’ll have to pay them $40 and if you don’t have it, you’re going to have to leave because you cannot be inside the venue without a valid ID. ¬†Fun right? Well beyond that shady shit, so there was a moment where my homegirl Ashley who was working the door caught these guards running side deals all night, basically slip a guard anything from a 20 to a 100 under your ID in line, and he’ll have you step out, and enter through the alternative entry OR just walk you in past the door. Some people would pay in line, get the lineskip, then have to pay again at the door, but would be complaining at that point about having just paid someone (a guard) for entrance. This shit happened at least 5x in the night to the point that it was brought to my attention by Ashley who I then rounded up all the guards with and said stop fucking cutting side deals. We will take care of you guys at the end of the night, just please do your jobs right. Between holding the line in order to get impatient people buying into this garbage technique of a hustle. To the ID thing, to YG’s entourage of 40 bloods then all the people who went in behind them it was just a shit show from start to finish. His set was good, people who got in without the bullshit enjoyed themselves despite the discomfort of the room being packed with people who were there for more security/support than anything. The 30-50 people who got fucked with that night proceeded to write me and sound off. The owner said he’d talk to his crew the next day and take some action (yeah right) – long story short, nothing was done. Our series ended and we got the fuck out to never return. ¬†Again, just a moment of trust, and being on your p’s and q’s, this shit killed the customer experience and definitely ruined some peoples night, and it also cost us quite a bit of money at the door. Some people were leaving after seeing those in front of them just being whisked right in for an additional surcharge.

 

3.¬†Cruisin For A Bruising –¬† I feel like I’ll end this one on a high note as this story is kinda funny with some twists and turns. This happened on a Thursday night when LA has a residency called Respect, a dope gathering for people into Drum & Bass, Jungle and similar sounds. The regulars here are/were as consistency as Low End Theory’s crowd is for electronic instrumental production. Always a good time, community vibes featuring emcees, producers and dj’s alike. This event happened at The Dragonfly, a place I’ve blown the roof off of with a few events, and was happy to have a good relationship with. Bear their head guard was always there to greet people and his crew was solid and ethical. Anyways, so I was out doing my rounds, dropping on events that friends were producing and performing at, and was on santa monica blvd passing by and decided to drop in. I grab a drink at the bar, get on the dance floor a little, step outside for some air and to smoke some trees. This girl comes out of the hallway and walks up to me, asks for my name, introduces herself. She’s cute so I talk it up with her for a bit, meet her friend briefly who then disappears and leaves me to chat with this girl further. I ask if she wants to smoke, she says no, I go inside. At this point I felt like I had already been here too long, I normally don’t spend more than an hour or so in a spot unless it’s really jumping, I have friends with me or I just don’t have anymore stops for the night. So I end up going inside by the entry near the photobooth. She walks up and grabs me and begins to start kissing me. Now I’m not mad, again she was cute – I didn’t think she was drunk or on anything at the time so I was like, this is different, let’s see where this goes. back against the photobooth, we go inside of the booth and continue making out a bit. She starts taking off my belt, pants, etc, turns around and before you know it, we’re fucking in the photobooth. Irony here is this isn’t the first, or second time I’ve handled biz in a photobooth, but I had mixed feelings here because I literally just did an event a month or so prior and I genuinely respect the spaces that treat event coordinators/promoters and nightlife pros right. Plus I knew a handful of people there, and really just wasn’t completely sold. Too fast, too soon? Who knows. Anyways, a guard comes to the booth… he opens it up with me pants down. Of course it’s a guard I fucking know, and he’s like “awww it’s you bro? I don’t even know what to do at this point, do you wanna finish? want me to stand outside? I was like nah man, I’m good here it’s cool – I don’t wanna disrespect the spot. So I exchange info with the girl ( which I guess would’ve been smart to do beforehand ) – she says she’s gonna go outside and smoke, I say I’ve gotta bounce to Echo Park. She asks me to come back to her place, says she’s only in town for a few days from the bay. I say I live here, I’ll be around tomorrow if she wants to get together. I promptly go out front ready to leave and Bear calls me out saying “that was you? damn man, with xyz girl? yeah, she’s cute” so he convinces me that the girl is worth going after, verifies her ID wasn’t from LA, and was military. Said her friend was already in the car waiting for her…I tell him I’ve never in my life chased pussy and really just let things kinda take shape on their own. Somehow he convinces me to go with her. She comes out shortly after this convo and then asks me to follow her to her hotel in studio city. At this point, I figured you know, why not – I was already past the point of no return with her so I may as well just go further. I follow her up wilcox, she pulls into 7-11. I pull in behind her, grab some condoms, a gatorade and smartwater and ask if she wants anything. She already has her starburst and whatever the fuck else. I hop back into my car and lower the window, saying “so we’re good, I’ll meet you over there – it’s only about 13minutes away right” and she says yeah, closes the door. Friend is still asleep in the passenger seat. She moves her car into reverse and then slams into the front bumper of a BMW m6, smashing the front lights and grill. Then she immediately pulls into drive and jets out of the 7-11 parking lot and north into the freeway. The dude runs out of the store and chases her car on foot after cursing a bit then hops in his car and speeds out of the lot and up the freeway too. At this point her phones dead, I’m following him and I don’t see her car in front, but I’m assuming that he does with the way he’s driving. Eventually my GPS tells me to get off as the hotel is down the street, I take the exit, sit at the light and then just go to the hotel and wait… Her phones dead, my phones dying. So I wait in the parking garage of the hotel for 15minutes or so. At this point, I’m just like is it even worth it? This is such a crazy night, and now she’s committed a crime. I should just bounce. I express the story to my homie who was the guard by text and then head start heading to echo park keeping in mind that this is exactly why I don’t chase women haha. I get to the gas station before the freeway and think, maybe I should go back and just at the very least see if her and her friend are alright. I go back to the parking garage, the cars there – all fucked up, looking like she backed into the fist of the incredible hulk. I call her phone, dead. I ask the hotel manager/cashier person if he could tell me what room the two girls just went into, he said without a police escort he’s not permitted. I took that as a hint as I should definitely just leave and not come back. I go on with my night, drop by short stop, say hi to some friends, tell the story, shoot some pool, then head home. The next day she hits me up with paragraphs of apologies by text, tells me she’s got another day in town til she goes to Vegas. Adds me on social media, I see she’s got a kid… It was all too much for me. Haven’t seen or spoken to her since. Dragonfly is now closed, Respect DNB has moved. Haven’t seen Bear since (sadly), The End.

ūüôā So I hope you enjoyed these stories, with over 7 years of events I’ve got some pretty funny, sad, interesting, cool and exciting memories to tell. Since these are all Hollywood, I’ll probably jump to DTLA next then maybe Westside or EchoPark/Silverlake/EagleRock… Even got some crazy SXSW and 6th street stuff from when I lived in Austin, and a few from when I lived in New York.

5 Artists You Need To Know – Vol 11.

Artist – AISE BOURNE

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You can find more work by him at instagram.com/aiseborn/

DJ / Producer – SWISHA


You can catch him tearing up clubs from West to East Coast & beyond. Holla @djswishasweet

Vocalist/Singer-Songwriter – Joyce Wrice



You can reach out to her at: @joycewrice


Producer –¬†Swarvy


You can get a hold of him at @Swrvy

Emcee – Waju


 

Holla at Waju via @EyyWaju
Hopefully some if not all are artists that you can check out, follow and support in the future. If they are published here, it’s because I’ve caught their live shows, older projects and newer ones and feel they’ve put in the work to deserve some shine much like the prior 10 Artists You Should Know posts. Thanks for listening.

-Eric Spivak
holla@eric-spivak.com
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Beat Junkies Record Pool: 

ARE YOU LISTENING? 10 MARKETING TRICKS FOR GETTING HEARD

So as I’m doing more artist consulting this month, I’ve noticed that a few of these guys and girls are really struggling on trying to get true feedback and readings on their music. Getting that response is extremely important in the direction you may take an incomplete project, or maybe start a new one. People’s first impressions are generally their rawest, then a second listen or look yields different results ( the “sleep on it” and revise the next day, approach ). Regardless of if you want either of these reactions, you first need to have places to get an unsuspecting listen. So below I’ve made a list of a few ways that have worked for me, and others I work with, hopefully they work for you!

Aux Cords – I know it may sound stupid, or maybe even like a no brainer, but if you think about coffee shops, cafes, diners, uber, lyft, house parties, and so many other places that an aux cord can come in handy, if you get creative with you can literally replace the world around you with your own soundtrack (tactfully) — Note: I say please use this one at your discretion, your music may suck and your taste in music could also suck. I wouldn’t want a room full of people to

CD-R’s turned Data Discs – So I go to anywhere from 3 – 8 events per week here in Los Angeles, it’s not as exhausting, expensive or time consuming as you may think. Infact most of it’s paid for but I will say one thing that really gets my friends is when I’ve got 2-3 in the car and I have my mixes on. I constantly get asked “What is this track, my shazam won’t work” and other similar questions as they look at my LED dash that says SPIV_Untitled28. So I started distributing my mixes and music I intended on mixing or playing out at gigs to the friends who’d roll with me. It’s also great economically because these data discs can hold upward to 80mb (which depending on the size of the songs, could be upward to 150 tracks). Also in 2016′ they play in most systems. So at the start and middle of each month I burn about a dozen new cd’s and when I interact with Bartenders, Security Guards, Event Coordinators, or just have friends in the car or make new ones at functions and I can give them my music. Note: I generally also include a prerolled joint and preface them listening to smoking and ask them to give me their thoughts on it after.

USB –¬†Similar to the above, except smaller and easier to get preloaded with music. You can get bulk orders of usbs pretty in expensively these days. They also have a larger capacity. Get innovative with customization aspects and you can really get your music far in these little babies. I give them out like candy on Halloween, and if I don’t get custom designs, I’ll put a small sticker that correlates back to my social media and just leave them at various unique spots around the city. Taped to bathroom stalls to sticky notes, I’ve put them in envelopes that say “Listen To Me!” and gone around parking lots and garages outside of events that have a demographic I’m trying to reach, and dropping them in any window that’s left cracked open or putting them on sideview mirrors. Get Creative. Your distribution techniques should be unorthodox and untraditional. Be unique in your approach and you’ll go far.

Shortcut Links –¬†Long web addresses are hard to type, and remember. Keep it short and simple, using a site like www.bit.ly or other ‘link shorteners’ help people reach your music more easily and faster. You can press these on yellow manila envelopes, but them on USPS stickers, even pull tab signs. The shorter the better. It should either go directly to a download/autoplay link or a place giving people very minimal options of what they can do, and if they like what they see or hear — they should have a way of reaching you.

Digital –¬†Distribution through digital channels is easier than ever with things like Tunecore, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, etc. Me doing¬†guerrilla and viral marketing alongside business development and growth hacking. I choose to again, go a think differently approach. If you have 5,000 friends on facebook, export your friends list, alphabetize it, organize it, and highlight people who’d likely be down to share your product. Whether it’s a campaign, a service, a product, whatever you have, you know who’s down to ride for you, and there may be some people you don’t know who are also down to ride for you. If the quality of what you have to offer is good, people will naturally share it. I’ve done the angle of having multiple people change their profile pictures across 3 networks all at the same time, as well as create a share/RT/RP campaign that was very effective. There’s also a few other tips and tricks to the digital marketing game to explore, but I had to work for this knowledge, and you shall have to as well ūüôā — Think about the avenues of video channels, live streaming, podcasts and more. You’re smart, I believe in you.

Crowdsource Campaigns –¬†Similar to my mentions above in the retweet/share/repost campaigns. Crowdsourcing is a great way to get yourself heard (and get paid). A very strategic and savvy campaign that showcases creativity, authenticity and ingenuity will definitely help get you heard by peers. Not to mention it allows you to generate revenue if the product is good or they believe in you. I think about having 5,000+ friends on facebook, and then my other social networks then my 25,000 person email list and I think. If each of these people were to share 1 hit song or 1 dope clothing article or just something that has the potential to spread — there’s just so many opportunities that can come from that. $5 x 5,000 people = $25,000 | Most people spend more than $5 daily on stupid shit they don’t need. They don’t need your music either. Make your music that stupid shit they spend their $5 on. Except, make it extraordinary and special, and actually worth much more than $5 so it doesn’t feel, look or sound like a stupid purchase.

Stickers – Not just “stickers” but window decals, murals, wheat paste, billboards, skywriting. whatever it takes. Take into consideration how long these things last, and how inexpensive they are. If they are designed well, they garner a lot of attention and can spread like wildfire in photos and videos. Much like several coveted locations in LA that people use for backdrops for their ” look at me, I’m basic” IG photos.: Much like stickers, stencils are also a valid route, but also more risky – Look into Post No Bills and other signage issues to make sure you don’t get in trouble placing stuff where it doesn’t belong or on other people’s property that it will have a negative result or impact on you. I have some stickers that are in nightclubs and bars that have hung on for 10 years and they STILL to this day get me new eyes/ears that occasionally reach out to me to compliment my music.

Business Cards –¬†The less permanent route. So business cards are inexpensive, they don’t have to be used as “business cards” they can be used as promotional cards. Due to the cost vs quantity situation with this, you can easily throw hashtags, websites, catchy quotes or art and literally give these out EVERYWHERE YOU GO. I used to drop them in checkbooks when I was bartending and waiting tables to every single guest of mine, I’d also leave them on the busses and subways, inside friends cars, bathroom mirrors, literally everywhere imaginable. You wouldn’t believe me if I told you the return on investment with these. I do a lot of things in this manner, what is the easiest or least expensive way to make the longest, biggest and best impact. — My only downside to these is environmentally, it’s waste. In general, I am¬†conscious of these things so I do actually use this approach a little less often these days. I suggest making it reusable or plastic like a membership card instead of temporary paper promo.

Brand Alignment –¬†What does your sound invoke? How do people feel when it’s on in the background, or if they’re working out? Is there any feeling in your music? I hope there is. Match the vibe of your style, content, and sound with like-minded people and businesses to get better results. If my music is very uptempo and fast paced like Styles Of Beyond, or maybe some Jungle/Drum&Bass/Breakbeat sounds. I’m probably better off trying to get it to people in the hands of people into active lifestyles, as opposed to couch potatoes or cubicle slaves, who probably prefer something more mellow and downbeat. If you’re loud and flashy, don’t pitch yourself to reserved, closed-minded suits. Find your niche and go for it. I look toward start-ups and publications to offer commissioned original music, production, writing, and songs to, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but it definitely has benefits once placed to get you heard.

Collaborations – This is how you bridge an audience. Got a singer/songerwriter who’s really dope? get her acapellas remixed by a producer that’s equally matched and let them play with each others sounds to create something new and fresh. Collaboration over competition any day, every day. I’ve teamed up with Skating, Fixie/BMX brands, Shoe Companies, Clothing Lines, and much more in regards to creating collabs that extend beyond music. Once you get the hang of pitching yourself and your brand/product/service you really gain perspective on how businesses operate, who their markets are, and you can come up with ways of intertwining yourself with them in a mutually beneficial manner that allows you to reach their crowd and vice verse.
That’s it for today’s lessons, I hope you gained something from this and continue to create new and unique ways of getting yourself out there. Feel free to leave a comment below or drop me a line at any of the places below ūüôā If you need help with marketing, promotions, pr, design, etc. I can also help with that. ¬†Please repost this article as it doesn’t just pertain to music and have a wonderful day full of good music and vibes~

Eric Spivak
holla@eric-spivak.com
FB: ericspivak
IG: @ericspivak
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SC: @ericspivak
Beat Junkies Record Pool: 

5 ARTISTS YOU SHOULD KNOW ‚ÄĒ VOL 10

1. Martin Ron: @martinronmural
You can find more work here: http://martinron.caseroscitystudio.com.ar/
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2. Greg Grease: @greazygreg
You can find more of his stuff here: https://soundcloud.com/greg-grease

3. Gavlyn: @gavluvsyou
Check Her New Project Here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/why-wait/id1093284693


4. Madeintyo: @madeintyo
You can find more from him here: https://soundcloud.com/madeintyo 




5. Anna Wise: @annathewise
You can find more from Anna at https://soundcloud.com/annathewise or http://www.annathewise.com/


holla@eric-spivak.com
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twt: @ericspivak
www.eric-spivak.com

The value of a hater and why it doesn’t hurt to have a few.

 

Adversity in business, relationships and friendships has always been something I’ve paid attention to. I actually have quite good memories of people watching in many environments. When you’re producing events you get to interact with hundreds of people for very short periods of time for a few hours. Behavioral habits and human nature have always been interesting to me. Luckily, over time my curiosity in this matter has actually paid off by making me a good judge of character, and very rapidly. ¬† ¬†So this article comes from a near and dear place. Regularly I see friends in art, music, and various lines of business have their ups and downs, highs and lows, get taken advantage of, beaten up, broken down, ripped to shreds, chewed up and spit out. By peers, friends, enemies, frenemies, and any other variation of the sort. The internet has definitely made it easy for people to sound off when they dislike something and want to get their opinion heard (social media, yelp/google+ etc)

We all have them, we know what they are, but here’s a reminder:

“TOP DEFINITION: ¬†Hater
A person that simply cannot be happy for another person’s success. So rather than be happy they make a point of exposing a flaw in that person.

Hating, the result of being a hater, is not exactly jealousy. The hater doesn’t really want to be the person he or she hates, rather the hater wants to knock someone down a notch.

Susan: You know, Kevin from accounting is doing very well. He just bought a house in a very nice part of town.
Jane (hater): If he is doing so well why does he drive that ’89 Taurus?”
Now it doesn’t matter what world you are living in, what you do for a living, what you’ve done in the past or where you’re going. The one constant besides change, is having haters. You probably don’t have enough of them to be honest. I know that may sound ridiculous, but there is several theories out there proving that how many people are speaking negatively about you, can directly convert to how successful you become.¬†A lot of this has to do with if someone is repurposing the negative energy into positive.¬†To many who don’t take things personally, they understand this kinda bad mouthing or negative critique can be rerouted and serve positive purpose. It’s a lot like PR where someone will take a bad story, and spin it into something good, striking while the hammer is hot and all eyes are on a subject. Most of the industry leading top dogs have their critics. If you’ve ever worked in food service, you understand that you simply can’t please everybody, regardless of how much you want to.

So let’s speed this up and put it into more of a perspective, do you see ‘nobodies’ on the TMZ, Ellen or Jimmy Kimmel reading damaging blows against themselves? No. These people have reached a level of success to a point that their name is on display for the masses, which comes with a lot of positive and negative responses. In business, we’ve got online review platforms like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Google+ encouraging people to sound off on the good, bad and ugly. Which then allows for Reputation Management jobs to come in and do damage control, much like a Manager/PR to a Musician. I’ve made moves in my past that have gotten me ridiculed, in the spot light, and my name and credibility tarnished all over the internet, including being blacklisted by certain people because of them seeing such negative things about me in the headlines. Did that stop me from reaching my goals? starting my own businesses? continuing to follow passion projects and creative projects? Hell, fucking no. ¬†It just further emphasized the power of PR, it showed me that if I don’t respond and essentially ignore or let it roll off my back, that eventually it’ll subside. It made me realize that while all the attention is on me, I can do really good things that win back my audience. Luckily, I learned this life lesson at an early age and allowed it to again, teach me the benefits of having people try to create road blocks and obstacles that otherwise wouldn’t be produced, had it not been for the moves I was making. ¬†Consumer Reports, Amazon, Rotten Tomatoes, Countless Music Blogs.

We’re constantly regurgitating hate spew. My only qualm is the lack of consistency in the haters. What an incredible waste of time and energy it is to just follow people achieving? Let alone the flipflopping hate where people play both sides of the fence. ¬† ¬†So here’s where the value in haters lies, outside of being motivational, sometimes they point out flaws or things you may have missed. If someone is clowning on your style, or an outfit – perhaps that ‘hate’ is actually an observation vocalized and pin pointing something you missed? Haters can also help give perspective and insight on weak points of things. I remember a guy was hating on a friend of mine’s music for years through online channels and in person. He made it a point to constantly talk shit, to the point that one time he got his jaw broken, but that’s beside the point. Some of the things this guy was saying while funny or made for satire were actually fucking valid points, imagine that? This hater was mentioning how my friends music wasn’t transparent or aligning with his character. Regardless of being portrayed through lyrical content in albums and songs, certain messages could be received or twisted to show my friend in a poor light, and make him seem to lack authenticity, not be genuine and essentially leave himself open to be called “fake”.

After I brought it up to him in a “maybe he’s right” approach, my friend broke down his past work to current and realized it was true. So, in this example his use of the negative energy, allowed for a positive change to come from something intended to destroy,¬†but instead, allowed him to reroute or detour to greener pastures. A lot of us look at haters as envious, insecure, weak, and fearful. A lot of it stems from a lack of not being able to do the same thing deep down. That means you’re doing something they can’t, or perhaps are scared to even attempt to do. Haters, can also turn into supporters. I used to send my own personal work to people who used to talk shit, over and over til I won them over and the hate turned into love. These people are already attracted or interested in what you do at some capacity, why not challenge them and yourself, and try to convert a hater to a fan/admirer? The difference between the two is really just you going from good to great. Haters also help you gain visibility you otherwise wouldn’t get. See who’s paying attention, and instead of defending yourself or enabling the behavior, talk to some of the people who chime in on a real level and give them alternatives? Maybe they are bandwagon riders and agree in the moment, but that’s because they don’t know of anything else you’ve done or have in the bag. The only way to avoid these people is not doing anything that grabs their attention, sounds fun right? You play it safe and tread lightly on eggshells and thin ice with a cloud above you and behind your back at all times. OR you soar to new heights and make them see you, hear you, and love you. To hate on your music, your art, or your event. They have to actually invest some form of interest, time, and maybe money in order to access it. People buy tickets to Dave Chapelle’s standup so they can hate on Dave Chapelle’s standup, and heckle from the audience. Do you care about a little bump in the road, or making money and having a packed house?

So between the valuable feedback, opinions and critique. To the increased awareness and visibility of your brand (free press), to the potential monetary gain from their interest in you. To even discovering weak parts you didn’t even know existed.¬†I say, bring on the haters. ¬†They allow you to learn and grow as an artist and as a person. Just be sure if you are going to ‘hate’ it’s for a just cause and actually valid. Even explain or break down why you are saying what you are saying to further justify and “help” the opposing person or company… That my friends, has lead to me getting paid 250/hr as a consultant, a few thousand a month as a Creative Strategist and Marketing Professional, and much more.
1. They talk a LOT
2. They’re often passionate
3. They tend to be in your market
4. They give you an open invitation to share
5. It’s WAY cheaper than advertising
6. They can make you look good
7. They might be highlighting a grievous error
This list comes from an article by:¬†Matt Cumming¬†which lead to me creating this article you’ve read.

Hate it or love it, ¬†Don’t let anyone stop you from achieving your dreams.

Wanna send me some hate mail?
_________________
-Eric Spivak
www.Eric Spivak.com
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5 Albums You Slept On And Shouldn’t Have

Now as usual, I know some of you have heard these ( it may have been awhile ) but I feel like the current and future generation of readers don’t get enough of this kinda content, so it’s a great opportunity to bridge the gap in this social media age. Share the wealth ūüôā

(can’t find the full album of this, but a very very solid project: Grey Matter: Grey Matter)

5 ARTISTS YOU SHOULD KNOW ‚ÄĒ VOL 8.

Faith 47 –¬†is an internationally-acclaimed street and studio-based artist. Following an active street art career spanning more than 15 years, her work can now be found in major cities around the world. Using a wide range of media, her approach is explorative and substrate appropriate ‚Äď from found and rescued objects, to time-layered and history-textured city walls and their accretions, to studio-prepared canvas and wood. ¬†Through her work, Faith47 attempts to disarm the strategies of global realpolitik, in order to advance the expression of personal truth. In this way, her work is both an internal and spiritual release that speaks to the complexities of the human condition, its deviant histories and existential search.

Her¬†first solo exhibition, Fragments of a Burnt History (2012, David Krut Gallery, Johannesburg), considered the transformation of Johannesburg into a more representative African city, exposing the harsh realities of day-to-day life and capturing the remnants of South Africa‚Äôs complex history in a personal and symbolic manner. Through the creation of an immersive environment in the gallery space, this work challenged the viewer‚Äôs detachment.¬†Her solo exhibition, Aqua Regalia (2014, London & 2015, New York), further extends the possibilities of immersive spaces, enveloping the viewer into a sacred ‚Äėroom‚Äô filled with collected objects and other intricacies from everyday life that ‚Äď together with figurative paintings ‚Äď explore the notion of the mundane as sacred, celebrating the discarded and unwanted as holy.


faith1 faith2

Vince Staples¬†–¬†is an American rapper from Long Beach, California. He is one-third of the group Cutthroat Boyz, alongside fellow California rappers Joey Fatts and Aston Matthews. Staples was also known as a close associate of Odd Future, in particular Mike G and Earl Sweatshirt. Staples is currently signed to Blacksmith Records, ARTium Recordings and Def Jam Recordings. He came to prominence with his appearances on albums by¬†Odd Future members and his collaborative mixtape titled Stolen Youth, with¬†Mac Miller, who¬†produced the majority of the¬†project. In October 2014, he released his debut EP Hell Can Wait, which included the singles “Hands Up” and “Blue Suede”. His debut album, Summertime ’06, was released in June of last year (2015) and has gotten critical acclaim. *He was also chosen as part of the XXL Magazine 2015 Freshman Class. It’s crazy looking back to see how far he’s come, I think it was about 2010 when him, mikeg, syd, speak, nikko gray and a few others were rocking my showcase inside the Fox Hills (now westfield) mall in Culver City. Since then I’ve done plenty of other shows, even worked Camp Flognaw/OddFutureCarnival doing merchandising and pushing Vince’s goods. Bottom line, It’s great to see the climb/growth/progress of people who are dedicated convert to success in the eyes of many.

Astronautica – 23-year-old Los Angeles native Edrina K. Martinez is Astronautica, one of Alpha Pup Records’ newest artists. Bringing a unique style of lush electronica and a playful sense of exploration to the label, the young producer is a fresh face to the thriving local beat scene. Learning to play guitar by ear at an early age, Astronautica soon began mixing her own samples and beats. Quickly becoming addicted to the burgeoning beat sounds of the West Coast, Astronautica is now a full-fledged member of the movement. Been lucky enough to catch her more then a few times live, and recently had her play one of my showcases – definitely a sure bet for a solid set, every time.

 

IllFightYou – This is IllFightYou ( Glenn, Uglyfrank, and Khris P ) I Couldn’t find a real bio or much info on them, but I’ve been listening to these guys for quite some time now and putting up homies on them after playing out their music in the whip or at shows. They did a pretty thorough interview last time they were in LA with Intuition for his program Kinda Neat ( which can be heard here http://kindaneat.net/illfightyou/ ) they also rocked LowEndTheory and a few other shows. Music speaks for itself, check it out below and more on their soundcloud.

Bibi Bourelly –

Bibi Bourelly is a Berlin-born Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter. She wrote the Rihanna song “Bitch Better Have My Money” and features on “Without You”, a track by Lil Wayne that features on his 2015 album Free Weezy Album. She also co-wrote and features on Nick Brewer’s Top-20 UK debut track “Talk to Me” and she’s featured on Usher’s single “Chains”. ¬†¬†Bourelly is of Moroccan and Haitian descent. She was born in Berlin, her father being the guitarist Jean-Paul Bourelly and her mother, the head of the art department at Berlin‚Äôs House of the World‚Äôs Cultures. She moved to America in the tenth grade to pursue a music career, first ending up in the Washington, D.C. then moving to Los Angeles. Her break came after a producer she had been working with online, Paperboy Fabe, arranged a session with Kanye West, who isolated her in a booth. The result was Rihanna’s “Higher”. She also wrote the singer’s “Bitch Better Have My Money”, which caused some controversy after Houston rapper Just Brittany claimed that Rihanna had plagiarised the song.

In April 2015 Bourelly issued her own single, “Riot”, an effort to prove to people she was “authentic”, detailing how wanted to be heard and recognised as a legitimate musician.¬†Bourelly is also involved with quite a few other projects and artists which will soon come to light. Most recently being her features beside Usher & Nas…. I mean c’mon son haha. bright future ahead.

10 SURESHOT WAYS TO GET HEARD BY WHO YOU WANT.

Step 1. Don’t be MeekMill or Stacey Dash. (joking)

These days, the internet has become one of the most instrumental, and sometimes¬†detrimental building blocks for success. Although a big obstacle for many is learning how to navigate the landscape and figuring out the most effective methods of getting what you want, to¬†who you want with the least amount of resistance for the lowest cost and the fastest, whew…¬†Sounds like fun, right? At least, the ever-changing environment of what channels we use to distribute our content keeps things fresh, and requires us to be aware of new platforms to quickly adapt to for that ‘edge’ being first to: myspace>facebook>tumblr>soundcloud>twitter>bandcamp>instagram>snapchat>????? ¬†– ¬†After years of blogging, consulting, doing PR and producing events – I still have to keep my finger on the pulse of most outlets in order to know what’s best for the artists and brands that I work with and represent. That said, I’m going to share some advice below that should assist you in reaching the goals mentioned above as the title of this is how to get heard by who you want, which is¬†synonymous w/getting what you want.

1. Ethics & Integrity – Are fundamental and part of the basics to this whole thing. Think about the impressions you leave with people, whether that be communicated via email, in person, or even on social media. Your online persona could be just your ‘way of expressing yourself’ or feel more vocal about things, but you have to remember that it’s all a reflection of you. Much like recording over someones production without asking permission from the original producer or creating a remix to something then pushing it as if it was requested just¬†to¬†ride the wave of the popular artist who’s original song is getting play. Common sense plays a big role in a lot of this, but if I have to explain that then I’m wasting your time and my own. Try your best to maintain artistic integrity – if an opportunity arises that doesn’t change the alignment of your direction, branding, presentation and fabric that holds your product unique. by all means – go for it. Although, on the b-side if you’ve got wavering ethics or conceptual integrity it can be seen from a mile away and that may prevent some people from connecting with you on a business or personal level alongside turning your audience away because you weren’t true to what you might do or say. ex: The hip-hop head who starts to experiment with other genres (Which is completely fine) or worse, the¬†hypocrite who outs themselves on and off record.

2. Trim The Fat –¬†Keep correspondence short, nobody needs your life story. From your bio to your press kit, to your messages for collaboration or even attempts to volunteer or get involved with things bigger than yourself. KISS ( keep it simple, stupid ) being short and straight-forward in correspondence and requests will make it easier for the recipients to respond quickly in a similar manner. No means no, but months or years later could mean yes. As long as you keep it short.

3. No More Parties In LA – LA and NY are meccas of culture, entertainment, fashion, music and art. People come here on a 30-day to make it plan and either burn through everything they have and go back home or they make moves strategically and do things right so they can live off of their craft almost immediately. Then there’s the 9-5’er or freelancer who supplements their income with a balance til they are doing what they love full-time. Anyway you cut it, I think another important part of getting heard by the right people ( or at least, who you want to listen ) does require the legwork of going out and networking. There are several websites that will tell you what’s going on in your city at any given moment, and each one is a gateway drug to more events, much like flyergum that ends up on your mirror/dash after a party… I’m not suggesting you street perform or start soliciting people while you barista or wait tables. On the contrary, I do tell people to create a calendar of events that they go to each month that are beneficial to what they are doing and where they are trying to go. There’s so many different groups and demographics of people to reach, and you only have so much time and money to do such. Going out on a decently consistent basis allows you to see performance spaces and other shows in which you’ll potentially be interested in performing at, gain inspiration from and again – spread your art among the masses. ¬†You can drop your music with event coordinators, promoters, venue owners, talent bookers, deejays, and other people of potential importance when you’re checking out the nightlife as well.

4. Sampling – If you’re seeking placement or licensing situations, be smart about your sample usage. Unless you have the money to pay for clearance, most of the time that amazing track of yours is going to require a lot of additional work and money to have actual use.¬†It sucks, but it’s part of the game and a very expensive, time consuming one at that. Try to create original compositions so your work is original and has more flexibility, thus allowing you more opportunities in where it can take you. Otherwise, seek the originators of that music, request permission to repurpose their work and who knows – you may not only get their approval but several additional stems and pieces to work with. Dare I say, sometimes it works out that if they like what you put out there, you can collaborate with them on an official level because of a mutual respect or interest. There’s no better feeling then after years of trying to work with a certain someone, them finally responding to you and inviting you to meet up and build. Most of the guys and girls I’ve wanted to work with almost 10 years ago, I’ve now done shows or projects with and consider friends today.

5. Presentation & Packaging – If it looks like garbage, and smells like garbage, it might possibly be garbage, or at least that’s the place it will end up if your presentation isn’t on point. The easiest way I’ve found to clean up your presentation is working with a designer who’s actually into what you create. Someone who would be excited, and benefit from working with you and creating for you. I can’t even count on both hands and feet how many designs I’ve done for free that I call “portfolio” to make myself feel better about not being compensated for them, only to have them start hiring me when their money was right. It was all original work for¬†artists who I believed in, and little did I know would be moving mountains several years later and remember my efforts in supporting them. This is a good reminder of how things you do in the past, can help you in the future.¬†Working with the same people creates a good synergy, relationship and creates consistency in your branding. If everyone’s on the same page, you’ll gain some form of identity from this and it’ll benefit you tenfold as opposed to hopping around with every photographer, video guy, designer and stylist you meet. Last note on this, keep in mind what I said about trimming the fat, because this also applies to overproducing or going too-minimal with your work (whether art or music). There is a happy middle ground which you should hopefully reach.

6. Submissions – Unless it’s a very small mb file, do not attach files to emails that you’re sending out to labels, blogs, promoters and more. Nothing is worse then being on the receiving end and finding out someone just left an elephant on your doorstep that you didn’t ask for and now you’ve gotta call up a moving company, wasting time and money to move it so your important packages can arrive. Always be mindful of your recipient, this includes how many paragraphs that will be ignored inside of your email. You’ll have a higher success rate on having your hail mary passes reach the end zone if you consolidate and simplify what you’re trying to say. If the goal is to just have someone hear your music on the other end, make it as easily accessible as possible – no download links, no attachments, god forbid you have to sign-up to some new service to get to it. ¬†Just simply upload it on a platform where the person clicks once, doesn’t need to be logged in, and they end up at the file with a functional¬†Play & Stop button with volume control and leave the rest in their hands. It’s really that easy, and if you’re not getting a response from said bloggers, editors and more – they are either too busy, not interested, or you need to change your approach.

7. Unique Approach –¬†In a perfect world, a great idea or solid product would just fly on its own and create an abundance of wealth and opportunity for the creator of such things so they could reinvest in themselves. Unfortunately, we don’t live in that world and everything requires a solid gameplan because there’s levels to this sh*t. ¬†Having a unique approach will definitely help you get what you want as this shows you’ve thought outside of the box, and managed to think differently in how you present yourself, product or service. A few years back I had 2 friends ask me to redo their resumes. I asked them what they wanted to do, why, and what makes them think they are the most suited for the job. Both answered all the questions with confidence and with enough good reasons for me to move forward. Little did they know, if I didn’t feel like it would be sensible, I would’ve told them my opinion and suggested they work with someone else out of respect for their time and my own. One resume was for a new luxurious bespoke cocktail bar opening that would be extremely difficult to get into and had practically a 12 step hiring process. The other was for one of the biggest music festivals worldwide that happens annually in SoCal. For the bartender, we sat down and analyzed all the collateral the bar had released through press and media outlets. We took a screenshot of their menu, names of their drinks, their color schemes, and the overall idea/concept that they were sharing and integrated all of this into a resume. Her resume looked exactly like their menu, and had unique accents and design elements that were deemed clever or witty, ex: instead of where the bars website, address and phone number were, it had her contact information/Website/LinkedIn. She printed this on a thicker resume cardstock similar to a diploma and delivered it to this bar. From the moment they received it, others were called into the room to check it out, surprised and excited to see the efforts put in by this potential candidate to get the job. The story gets deeper, but to summarize – she got the job for being different and unique in her approach. Against hundreds of people trying to get the same position before and after her. It was this, that paved the way for her to stand out and gain the attention of the audience ( getting heard by who you want ). ¬†While¬†the other person I mentioned was applying to Coachella and basically had me create an entire promotional kit with backpack, shirts, stickers, flyers, a poster, lanyard and more all with personalized/flipped-Coachella branding, so¬†instead of any of their details, it had his resume and credentials. This included a flyer with him playing every stage lol… Instead of sending it off to Goldenvoice, he actually ended up taking it with him to an interview in Hollywood, CA¬†for an advertising agency and got hired almost on the spot. I can give a few other examples that I was involved with things like this in music/art etc but I absolutely encourage anyone to push the limit on creative application and distribution of themselves. This includes when you are producing Cassettes, Vinyls, CD’s and more.

8. Working In Reverse –¬†This is sometimes a good process to accomplishing goals, I’ve done this a few times when assembling press kits and reworking resumes. As another example, there was an artist a few years ago that approached me about wanting to get on a festival. I looked at their guidelines for submission, who the headliners were, the openers, the region, and had to work in reverse to tear it all down to step 1 of what would give this girl the best shot at getting picked up for it. I started with the region, where she had already done many shows in the area with some of the biggest names that came into town fitting for her genre of music, so it was easy to make a list of these venues and shows she’s played, alongside the likes of who she performed with. That built value in her potentially bringing more attendees/promotion/ticket buyers to the festival due to familiarity.¬†¬†I continued to roll down their lists of steps required to get “on” and looked at anything else that would give her an edge when applying. When we worked through all of those, it was a matter of how we served up her introduction email, organized the rest of her content to be most fitting for the acts performing and type of festival (omitting tracks that didn’t make sense or wouldn’t be of interest, and pushing the ones that were/would be instead ). We were even so detailed to change the photos on her press kit out to show a different side and that she’s rocked stages with thousands in the crowd before instead of the smaller venue, intimate, candid shots she had there prior. The list goes on and I’m sure you get the idea, but¬†long story short – she got booked/paid because she had the basics down, but also learned how to tailor her pitch, after deconstructing the event and making a roadmap to reach her intended destination and audience.

9. Good People Are Hard To Find. – From managers, editors, event producers, curators, bloggers, and more. When you find people who genuinely appreciate what you say, do, and the direction you’re going. Don’t fuck up by letting them vanish, and don’t push them away with an ego. Everyone is trying to be the best they can be in their field, and who knows what their long term goals are. Some people you’ll work with from the start of their career and find helping¬†you out a decade later just based on your consistency in being dedicated to your craft and humble in your ways. Others you’ll show a little bit of promise to, they’ll spot it early on and they will ride for you til the wheels fall off opening doors along the way. It may not be fun to weather the storm over and over again, but that persistence and patience pays off most of the time if you aren’t making the same mistakes ( not to mention it¬†helps end the cycles of factory farmed creatives with mass distributed content that’s unhealthy clickbait, fodder and fluff distracting people from actually being productive). Build your team wisely and keep it thorough.

10. Asking. –¬†They say a closed mouth doesn’t get fed, but an open one can potentially get smacked for saying the wrong thing. Be tactful in your choice of words, especially if you don’t know who you’re talking to. I know people who blame being introverted or anti-social to their lack of success in their industry when realistically it’s a matter of them not speaking up and asking for what they want. So instead of getting the help they need or want, they’ll bitch and complain about it (which also, has the same result) until they give up entirely or fall into some mental sickness like depression. Asking questions, gets answers and people like to talk. Don’t be afraid to do some outreach and remember, what’s the worst that can happen, they say no? or there’s no answer? Note, Please & Thank You still work in whatever year it is that you’re reading this article and last but not least.¬†Don’t be an askhole, you’ll never get what you want if you continually ask for advice and then do the opposite, people notice and they remember. Asking is better then assuming, and that it’s better to ask for forgiveness then permission thing is definitely bullshit. That means you ‘assumed” the outcome of your question, and decided to do something because you weren’t strong enough to pose your request properly enough to get the results you desired, that shit is wack. ¬†Learn how to communicate better and you’ll see that most things aren’t as difficult as you think. Lastly, don’t name drop unless that person will vouch for you, it’s not going to give you any points if you’re lying, and if someone like myself decides to do a¬†verification text. “xyz says he knows you, and you’ve worked together,¬†is he cool?¬†” and the results come back negative, you just blacklisted yourself with 2 people at once…

So that about covers it, I hope you learned something new or found some tips within that will help you reach your goals in whatever it is that you’re aspiring to be or do.

-Spiv

Wanna reach out? 
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Eric Spivak
espiv15@gmail.com
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Beat Junkies Record Pool

5 Artists You Should Know ‚ÄĒ Vol 7.

Sir Anderson – Just stumbled across this guy the other day per a friends mention on the internet and low and behold, I dug his stuff and like magic – he’s now featured here. Maybe next time I mention him I’ll have a lot more to say because I’ll actually have met him ūüôā check out David’s work below:

ART12 art1243

He’s on the right path with his mixed media work and I feel like it’ll only get better and better, so continue to check his page out and show some support (not to mention, his work at the moment is pretty reasonable) ¬†https://www.facebook.com/artofsiranderson


Doc Illingsworth –¬†
I’ve¬†listened to this guy for years and always really dug his versatile sounds and constant interest in kinda bringing something different to the table. I feel like Detroit takes hip-hop seriously and you can hear it infused into most of the creations from that city. Illingsworth I used to feature on StrictlyBeats and also pass his music along to friends who may have no heard of¬†detroit cydi, him and ErikL. I want to say since 2006′ I’ve seen him reach new heights and recently saw him kill it out here at Low End Theory, alongside several other platforms that have given him some positive light. Humble cat, deserves what he gets and I hope he continues to push the ante with a quality sound that’s undeniable. Hopefully someday he can find that “illonthehunt instrumental’ for me ūüôā

You can support his new project here: http://www.fatbeats.com/products/illingsworth-worth-the-wait-lp


Linafornia –¬†
I have a big heart when it comes to seeing people go from tragedy to triumph and Linafornia is definitely someone whom I feel can give you that story. In Los Angeles, she’s quietly made waves in the scene that she’s supported mutually for years on nights and weekends. I feel like I’ve physically been to the same events with her at least 100x now and she’s always shown love to anyone and everyone who reciprocates and deserves it. I don’t wanna get into her car accident and story or too deep into detail in regards to how amazing this girl is but I do want you to know she’s a real one and you can hear it in her music, which realistically only started surfacing in the past year or so. In a short period of time she’s garnered attention from our Bananas crew to Beat Cinema, Low End Theory, RUN and more. Great sample selections, unique change-ups, cut points, loops and mixture of lo-fi and high-end sounds to make you zone out, as I’ve done when having the pleasure of catching a set, or rapping on it. Her debut album “YUNG” comes out Jan 22nd, 2015, keep your eyes peeled and follow her through social media.

https://www.facebook.com/1linafornia


Zack Sekoff –¬†
Started listening to this guy back when he lived in LA (he may be back now), next thing I knew he disappeared to go to school on the east coast, and I had a CD of his that I played until I couldn’t anymore… Heard about him through the grapevine of the beat scene, and our LA underground community, he was also close to peers like Speak, Westside Ty/Beeper King, and many others. This dudes musicianship is nuts and one can only assume he’s continued to progress and impress. He’s been quiet for quite some time now but steadily working under the radar to produce big sounds that boast his talents across many styles and formats. Zack’s won plenty of competitions, worked with the likes of Thundercat, Austin Peralta, KCRW’s Anthony Valadez, and a slew of others. His diversity is endless and I think without sounding like a total fanboy I should just let you decide for yourself.
He’s got a new album coming out soon, I highly suggest following him on Soundcloud & Twitter. Remnants of a Winter Sun” out 1/15

Bryson Tiller –¬†Bryson Djuan was born on January 2, 1993, in Louisville, Kentucky. His mother died when he was four years old. He has three siblings. Tiller started receiving massive internet attention from music industry insiders with his breakout single “Don’t”, which he originally released on his SoundCloud page. Early co-signs from record producer Timbaland and Canadian rapper/singer Drake led to major label attention for Tiller, with him eventually choosing to sign a creative partnership with RCA Records. Announced on August 25, 2015 : T R A P S O U L debuted at number 11 on the Billboard 200. ¬†Talking about his musical style, Tiller said, “It’s just trap and hip hop-influenced R&B, the perfect marriage between hip hop and R&B.” Tiller has cited American singer Omarion as his biggest influence. Other influences include R. Kelly, The-Dream, Lil Wayne, Chris Brown and Drake. Critics have compared Tiller’s style to Jeremih, Drake, Ty Dolla Sign and Tory Lanez. Keep an eye on him, because his promise continues to show through his consistency. I mean fuck… he’s already reached over 30 million plays on more then 3 of his songs/videos, not bad at 22 years old. Here’s a few great joints:

That’s All ūüôā
-SPIV / Eric Spivak

Feel free to reach out and ask me any questions directly via:

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5 Artists You Should Know — Vol 6.

Hueman –¬†Allison Torneros, known as Hueman, is an Oakland-based¬†graffiti artist and painter.¬†Her best-known works include a Nike-commissioned portrait of Kobe Bryant,¬†a mural for P Diddy’s Revolt TV office¬†and “Ritual”, a 9-day, free-styled, floor-to-ceiling mural installation in a 5,000¬†sq¬†foot warehouse space.¬†In 2013, Hueman was one of the first artists commissioned to paint a mural after Los Angeles lifted its street art ban.¬†Her biggest canvas to date has been a 90-foot wall at San Francisco’s Ian Ross Gallery.¬†In May 2014, Hueman was named one of LA Weekly’s People of the Year and was featured on a limited-edition cover of the issue.

In 2015, she and Daniela Rocha, founder of Rocha Art, curated¬†Wander and Wayfare,¬†which featured murals painted around San Francisco by eight female street artists, as well as a gallery art show.¬†The event “will be an annual exhibition and mural festival that plans to brighten the future of the San Francisco art scene.” In July, she also participated in the second annual series of Sea Walls: Murals for Oceans, organized by PangeaSeed in Cozumel, Mexico.¬†Hueman’s latest solo exhibition Just One Moment runs September 19, 2015 through October 10, 2015 at Mirus Gallery in San Francisco.

Hueman’s signature style includes bright colors and elements of abstract portraiture. Her work has been described as a product of “free association.” “Drawing first abstractly and without a definite idea, she will return to the work several times and refine images she sees in the primary, elemental composition.”

The name “Hueman” comes from the feelings she had after starting to paint murals for the first time. In a profile in Juxtapoz, she states,”I began painting murals after a dark period in my life when I felt like there was nothing left to lose, and when I painted big for the first time, it was like a light switch turned on. Once I got out of my studio and onto the street, I was using my entire body to paint, I was talking to people, I was collaborating, I was in the sun. I felt alive again. I literally felt human. That’s where the name Hueman comes from.”

Since street art is a medium notoriously dominated by men, Hueman is especially notable as a female breakthrough artist. Hueman graduated from the University of California Los Angeles in 2008 with a degree in Design & Media Arts. She is Filipino American.

huem


Kamasi Washington
–¬†is an American jazz saxophonist, composer, production editor and band leader. Washington is mainly known for his tenor¬†playing.¬†Washington was born in Los Angeles, California, United States, to musical parents and educators, and was raised in Inglewood, California. He is a graduate of the Academy of Music of Alexander Hamilton High School (Los Angeles) in the Beverlywood neighborhood.¬†Washington next enrolled in UCLA’s Department of Ethnomusicology. There, he began playing with numerous faculty members such as Kenny Burrell, Billy Higgins and band leader and trumpeter Gerald Wilson and released the Young Jazz Giants album in 2004.¬†He has since played along with a musically diverse group of musicians including Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock,Horace Tapscott, Gerald Wilson, Lauryn Hill, Nas, Snoop Dogg, George Duke, Chaka Khan, Flying Lotus, Francisco Aguabella, the Pan Afrikaan Peoples Orchestra and Raphael Saadiq. Washington played saxophone on Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly¬†and released a solo album, The Epic in 2015.


Syd
–¬†Sydney Bennett, known by her stage name as Syd tha Kyd or more recently Syd[2] (born April 23, 1992) is a singer, producer and DJ from Crenshaw, Los Angeles, California.[3] She is one of the main producers in Odd Future and a singer, producer and mixer in the neo soul group The Internet with Matt Martians. She is the main producer for Odd Future rapper Mike G and the older sister of Odd Future member Travis “Taco” Bennett.

Growing up in a musical family influenced Bennett’s interest in music. Her mother aspired to be a DJ and her uncle is a¬†reggae producer out of Jamaica.¬†As she explained, “I began wishing I could take credit for some of my favorite songs. That was when I started to make my own ‚Äď I only began singing on my own songs when I really started writing.”¬†When Bennett was 14, she built a small music studio in her home and worked on sound engineering before getting into production.

For the first half of her high school years, Syd attended Palisades Charter High School.¬†Bennett felt left out and had few friends at Palisades and moved to the Hamilton Music Academy, which she considered a more open-minded school. ¬†Syd began making music while she was still living with her parents.¬†Syd’s stage name was given to her by her big brother, Ty, as a kid. After growing out of it, she reclaimed the name when she joined Odd Future.¬†Most of the group’s original songs were recorded in Syd’s house, also known as “The Trap”.


Thundercat ¬†Stephen Bruner, ¬†better known by his stage name Thundercat, is an American multi-genre bass player, producer and singer from Los Angeles, California. He has released three solo albums, and is most noted for his work with producer Flying Lotus, and crossover thrash band Suicidal Tendencies. Recently, he appeared on Kendrick Lamar’s critically acclaimed 2015 album To Pimp a Butterfly. ¬†Born into a family of musicians, Bruner began playing the bass at an early age: by 15 he had a minor hit in¬†Germany as a member of the boy band No Curfew. A year later he joined his brother Ronald Jr. as a member of the Los Angeles metal band Suicidal Tendencies, replacing former bass player Josh Paul.

Along with his band duties Bruner is also a session musician, acclaimed for his work on Erykah Badu’s New Amerykah (2008) and Flying Lotus’ Cosmogramma (2010). He released his first solo album in 2011, The Golden Age of Apocalypse, which featured production from Flying Lotus, and was influenced by 1970s fusion artists such as Stanley Clarke and George Duke. The next two years saw a return to the recording studio with fellowBrainfeeder artist Flying Lotus, with contributions to the Lotus’s Until the Quiet Comes (2012) and You’re Dead! (2014), and the release of Thundercat’s second album Apocalypse (2013).

Bruner has been described as being a major contributor to and “at the creative epicenter” of Kendrick Lamar’s critically acclaimed album To Pimp a Butterfly.

Flying Lotus – ¬†Steven Ellison, known by his stage name Flying Lotus or sometimes FlyLo, is an experimental multi-genre music producer, electronic musician, DJ and rapper from Los Angeles, California.¬†Flying Lotus has released five studio albums‚Äć‚ÄĒ‚ÄĆ1983 (2006), Los Angeles (2008), Cosmogramma (2010), Until the Quiet Comes (2012) and You’re Dead! (2014)‚Äć‚ÄĒ‚ÄĆto increasing critical acclaim.¬†He has produced much of the bumper music on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim programming block.¬†He also contributed remixes for fellow Plug Research artists including Mia Doi Todd.

In 2012, Ellison began rapping under the persona Captain Murphy, based on the Sealab 2021 character of the same name. Ellison kept this fact a secret for several months, finally revealing his identity several weeks after the release of his first rap mixtape, Duality.

On November 15, 2012, Captain Murphy started a website and posted a 34-minute video titled “Duality” that featured his music as well as archived cult footage and lilfuchs-produced animation. The video album was to be named Du‚ąÜlity. He then began hinting at a deluxe version with separated tracks, bonus tracks and instrumentals. On November 28, Murphy released the deluxe version for download, along with the launch of a merch line. The mixtape was released with separate artwork for each track, created by lilfuchs.

On the night of the deluxe version release, Murphy played his first show at the Low End Theory in Los Angeles, California. He performed his set in a cloak to conceal his identity, but towards the end of the show, he revealed himself to be Flying Lotus.

Recently, Captain Murphy has released singles including “Between Villains” with collaborations from other musicians.¬†Flying Lotus has been planning to release a rap album as Captain Murphy but its release has been delayed. So far multiple tracks have been recorded with stars including Kendrick Lamar.





*Most materials cited from public domain sites / https://www.wikipedia.org

5 Artists You Should Know – Vol 2.

5 Artists You Should Know, will be turning the spotlight on five select artists that you should probably check out and support, if you don’t already. While the internet has definitely bridged the gap for aspiring talent¬†to reach new heights and larger audiences faster than ever before. It’s also created a bit of a great divide and surplus problem in regards to the quantity of projects not matching the quality expectations¬†that we were once accustomed to. While I won’t say that it’s all bad, ¬†It’s definitely thrown the music industry into a whirlwind and really requires more finesse and strategy than ever to really push your way to the top. That being said, the goal of this section isn’t necessarily to give you deep interviews that talk about your favorite rappers prior charges, drug habits, or executive producers who¬†squandered away their royalties. Rather the focus and goal here is to provide a platform of discovery, exploration, and hopefully put you up on some talented¬†individuals you’ve missed in the streets and on the web.

—-

Mimi Yoon
( Artist )
I remember years ago when I was producing functions for the Downtown Los Angeles Artwalk and I came across this amazing woman’s work. I spent a few hours in a gallery that showed her stuff in hopes of the opportunity to physically meet her and personally thank her, exchange contacts and keep it moving… Unfortunately, It never happened and I found myself drunk from the open bar watching others also admiring her work in a similar manner. So when I got home, I decided to look her up and see if I could find out more about her process, how long she’s been doing it, and where I can catch more of her work. While she’s got an online store located here: http://mimiyoon.bigcartel.com/products you can see a lot of her work, and progress shots at¬†https://instagram.com/mimiyoon/

Bad_Girls9885955 mimimi

—-


Nocando / Jimmy The Lock / Burnout

( Emcee  )
Nocando is a diverse and versatile Los Angeles veteran who’s carried the torch for emcees of all walks. Between hosting the institution that is Low End Theory, and having countless ciphers outside of the blowed/kaos, his accomplishments span far and wide in the Battle Rap Circuit, to also being an independent artist producing original material. He even started his own label ( Hellfyre Club ) on Daddy Kev’s Alpha Pup Records. Countless times has he risen to the occasion to really showcase ¬†what it means to be a powerhouse musician that withstands the test of time. He’s really learned how to adapt with the market/landscape of music and remain relevant all while also being a father, and modest leader to many. Never in my wildest dreams would I imagine the rapper I met years ago in NY during Jumpoff, then again out on the Slauson line to reach the levels he has… It’s really been great to witness his growth, and I look forward to seeing/hearing what’s next. Below is a sampling of some of my favorites of his discog – You can also support him on social media, soundcloud, bandcamp and itunes, or catch him at Low End Theory every Wed.




—-


Dumbfoundead / DFD / Parker

( Emcee )
Dumbfoundead is another inspirational story who I’ve had the pleasure of working / rapping with in the past and seeing rise from the bottom to reach new heights and surpass expectations against all odds. From the Rap Battle world to the Music side of things, to even having his own channel that’d spotlight budding talent and give them another platform to be heard (Knocksteady). Dumb has really gone through a great transformation and an amazing amount of growth as an artist, selling out shows all over and really throwing down for Korean Artists everywhere.¬†He’s another shining example of hard work paying off in a big way. It’s funny because I remember years ago at this graffiti shop called 33third when I was in town for a short trip, I was in a mc battle with him that was hosted / judged by ¬†Pharaohe Monch & Percee P… Even at this time, you could tell he had a great amount of support from his peers (project blowed) and a passion for the game. With witty wordplay, funny punchlines, and a solid delivery he took home the prize. Since then he’s made huge leaps working with a lot of your favorite artists, producers, dj’s and more in shows worldwide, and created ample collaborations and efforts to bring up other artists. Anyways, I’ve posted a few tracks below for you to familiarize yourself with this talented individual that you should know about if you don’t already. Again,¬†you can support him on social media, soundcloud, bandcamp and itunes, or catch him at his Spam & Eggs events in KTOWN.



—-


Open Mike Eagle

( Emcee )
Open Mike Eagle is a unique subject to analyze. His work varies from satirical dark humor to subtle subliminal honesty, smoothly delivered over interesting production choices and sometimes accompanied by his friends that range from Aesop Rock to Blockhead to Hannibal Buress. From being a teacher, to a father, to a radio/podcast host and most importantly a class act. Mike has managed to really mess around with a variety of sounds in his process and progress, and now I think has really kind of carved out a lane of his own. From the same school of rap that Nocando & Dumbfoundead came from (Project Blowed)¬†he’s definitely proven his worth reaching audiences of all types in several different mediums and platforms, alongside continues to break boundaries ¬†and reinvent himself through his output. I remember this guy coming to the blowed with a cardbox box of cd’s to sell that he pressed him himself and each time the content, production, and overall product just got better and better. You could tell he was appreciative of every single person who believed in him enough to support his art. These days with the disconnect of digital purchasing, I feel like it’s should be a necessity for artists to continue to create physical copies and connect with their fans in this grass-root approach. Mike is definitely a phenomenal artist and making moves faster then we can keep up. So catch him if you can via Social Media, check out some of his podcasts, live shows, music and more.




—-
Ele
( DJ / Producer )
Always with an open mind, Ele has been influenced by a multitude of sounds. Even though she goes back and forth between mixing platforms, she spent her first 10 years DJing strictly vinyl ‚Äď seamlessly blending mostly deep house, hip hop and drum n bass. In 2009, Ele started dabbling in production and within a couple years released various singles like her Down 4 U remix, which earned her the spotlight as a producer. In 2013, she released her first official EP ‚ÄúNoir‚ÄĚ, which got her featured on several known music blogs such as URB Magazine and Giant Step. Her EP also featured artist such as, Abjo (Soulection) & M31RK (RMG). She¬†currently holds a residency at ‚ÄúCulture‚ÄĚ every 3rd Wednesdays along with Abjo (Soulection) & JR Jarris, at North Park‚Äôs AC Lounge.¬† You can also find her every 1st Thursdays at her 2nd residency along with Andre Power (Soulection) & Sufficient Sounds at the popular Art in the Park monthly ‚Äď which fuses music and art.¬† Ele continues to spend most of her time in production and has also teamed up with Half Bad Society, a Brooklyn based music collective. Keep an eye out for more of her work and collaborations! Be sure to dig her up on social media and check out her individual projects, I really cosign this woman¬†and I’m happy to share her production any chance I get.


How To Book Better Gigs More Often

How To Book Better Gigs More Often

In my 10 years of working at various capacities in and around this industry, I never once took into consideration how difficult, complicated and overwhelming things must be for aspiring talent¬†that lacks proper guidance to “make it” as they say… We all know the internet has provided several articles, tutorials and resources for people to independently help themselves become as aware and knowledgeable as possible. With the addition of social media and platforms like Bandcamp and Soundcloud, it’s become even easier for you to project yourself to the masses and correspond with potential investors to your brand (fans). ¬†My question is, what happens when you get offline? Like, ok great! You’ve been featured all over the world and your mixes, songs and videos have thousands of plays, you’ve got a little blog traction¬†and managed to open¬†for a few established acts that you can namedrop into your bio, but what’s next? ¬†¬†I feel like several talented people hit this peak and then¬†unfortunately start questioning what they are doing or drag their feet. This is when we start to look at other options like Agents, Managers, PR/Publicists and Peers for help.

*Now I must really like you guys,¬†because I’ve decided to put together this basic visual aid to illustrate what happens at this moment.

Untitled - 14
Alright, so that was quick and painless right? Now I’m not saying all artists follow this pattern, but through the ones I’ve mentored, managed, and coached from the sidelines and on the field. I’d be lying if I didn’t say this was a very real and common thing,

so congrats, you’re not alone.

Here’s my tips on how to land more bookings, more often (and¬†help improve your overall self)

  1. Be Transparent. In all interactions. any communication.¬†I know I don’t have to tell you how far integrity, modesty and honesty go but I’m going to anyways. You don’t know how many times people have asked me to manage them bragging about working with this person, or that label, or performing on xyz stage while I smile and nod. Then get home, reach for my phone, shoot a text out and see if what you said is true. – Technology is a blessing and a curse, it’s your choice on whether you want it to work with you or against you. One of the easiest ways to avoid it malfunctioning or not working out in your favor is keeping it 100.
  2. Friendliness –¬†I understand you may not like Joe Blow’s music, or think Kristi Kokane and The Kirkland Krew¬†¬†are trash, but that doesn’t mean you have to be rude or disrespectful. In an industry where all you have is your word, use yours wisely and for good. It costs nothing to be nice, and there isn’t a gun to your head to support said act, but you could have one at your head if you decide to speak up and degrade someone else’s efforts. Social Media may sometimes encourage bad behavior, but you can use it to showcase your personality and really leverage friendships and new connections, just by being positive.
  3. Organization –¬†Having your EPK (electronic press kit) in order will surely help you get more placement and¬†better gigs. Business Cards & Websites are synonymous with this as well. ¬†For me to take someone seriously, I need to know they’ve invested in themselves before they are trying to ask for money from me. No Joke, I spend a quarter of the year re-producing these for people who went on craigslist or through a friend and got a price hookup, but an abomination of work. Make sure you put your best foot forward on all fronts. ¬†Collecting Emails and¬†Numbers then¬†dissecting them when you get home, into an excel spreadsheet is a great way to work on your organization and launch concentrated marketing efforts. This also goes for making a list of Radio Stations, Blogs, Magazines, and other areas that you want to reach utilizing their submission addresses & emails.
  4. Put some Bass in your voice –¬†Confidence, not cockiness, when introducing yourself to others at events will¬†¬†go a long way, throw in some humor and you’re in! If you are at an event, whether performing or not, chances are the people who produced it are also in attendance. Now keeping in mind there is a time and place for everything. I don’t necessarily suggest going out of your way to bother these people ( I am one of these people ) but if you do happen to cross paths with them. Say a quick hello, introduce yourself quickly, and depending on the vibe, either keep it moving or pay them a compliment. First impressions go along way, and set the tone for any future correspondence. Small talk isn’t required, and what you say “can” hurt you, so use some tact. Depending on your approach, you should’ve opened the door for yourself to at least see each other again, briefly and have a slightly longer conversation, until eventually your rapport is at a point that you can share your music. Who knows, you may even get requested for your EPK. You can be proud and accomplished without being arrogant or conceited, much like a vegan or crossfitter can be a vegan or crossfitter, without telling anyone they’re vegan or do crossfit.
  5. Support by attending! –¬†Another great way to get the attention of the players in the scene is being active. Seven¬†years ago when I moved to Los Angeles, I didn’t know much of anyone or anything with an exception to people I’ve met in the past when they were on the east coast (NY) or the south (ATX) for specific events (Jumpoff/SXSW/etc). Now I’m happy and lucky enough to say that I’m known throughout several scenes and circles and get warm greetings, because of my consistent support and interactions. By frequenting events that fit a demographic you’re interested in, you’ll open several doors because generally the attendees are interested in the same things as you. The best part is, not all of them are there promoting themselves, and several potential fans¬†are listening and watching you move.¬†This is where that whole first impressions are lasting thing comes into play. If you connect with others in social environments and keep it cordial, you’d be surprised how far that goes and where it translates into your income. If you do the opposite keep in mind that those who you talk to, can talk too. If you go to an event consistently enough, you get to meet the residents and coordinators casually, which opens the doors of opportunity if you get along. Two things I¬†DO NOT¬†suggest is, attempting to get booked for events you haven’t attended more than a few times, and DO NOT¬†become a pushy overbearing salesperson. Nothing is worse then the guy who interrupts the conversation or cipher to push his latest frisbee. Again, use tact (and common sense) because you never know who is watching.
  6. Think Outside Of The Box –¬†I¬†dropped a mix on 200 cd’s a few months back and gave them to L.A. Uber & Lyft Drivers. This mix + my cards got my website traffic boosted by 1200 people, I made 17 new connections on social media, and my soundcloud had a few addtl thousand plays on the week. When I worked for Viacom/MTV Networks in NY at 1515 Broadway – I used to sneak into the library and mail room and stick my event flyers & cd’s into everyone’s cubby. When I was in high school I dropped my poetry and a mixtape into the women’s locker room 3 vent slots on valentine’s day and made a lot of people happy ūüôā – These are just examples of the lengths in which I’ve personally gone to reach a broader demographic. Sure the internet is great between Reddit, Buzzfeed, Social Media, and all the other outlets. Although if you want to make a real splash where you’re the small fish in a big pond, you’ve gotta be creative. Find unique methods of packaging and delivering your content to people. Think about who you want to reach, and where they will be. I used to always be amazed by all the luxury vehicles Los Angeles had floating in the streets daily, to the point that I started asking anyone in a 80k+ vehicle what they did for a living? The result? some blew me off, some told me, and some followed up with “Why do you ask” and took what I had to offer ( a business card, resume, and cd ) and managed to connect me with some top industry professionals. I urge people to never be afraid of the unknown, and just weight “what’s the worst that can happen” before acting to yield best results. As long as your promotion and marketing attempts are not disruptive or destructive, I definitely co-sign pushing the ante on distribution tactics. ¬†*Note: This does not include tagging the side of the 10 freeway with your soundcloud link.
  7. Professionalism – I can’t count on all my fingers and toes how many times people have shown up late, complained about irrelevant bullshit, gotten too tipsy/turnt before their set, or too faded on the patio when they should’ve been setting up.¬†¬†If you want to be treated like a professional, act like one. Show up early, make yourself useful, show that you’re invested in the show and it’s not just a quick snatch & grab of some promoters cash by promoting the event to the best of your abilities. ( Trust me, social media has definitely made this task a no-brainer for you ) –¬†If you are granted a few guestlist slots, don’t abuse them by showing up at the door every 5 minutes giving my doorgirl lip about letting a broke homie in. If they spent the time/money to get to your event, they’ve got the financial means to support you. Not to mention, let’s be honest – the doorgirl may throw you the fuck out. Please bring all required music on a USB/Phone/CD and have a backup, unless you like performing acapella or over other people’s instrumentals. Do not hastle promoters or coordinators for drink tickets, we understand you can’t survive on water all night, and need to get your booze¬†to boost your buzz and confidence levels. Be supportive. I can’t stress this enough, I’m not talking emotional support, or child support. Applaud other acts, watch your time, don’t infringe on others by going over your designated slot, and don’t be a dick. ¬†Make it easy for us to pay you and book you again. I’ve noticed the talent that gets booked the most, tend to have their shit together (being organized) and arrive on time, perform on time, say thank you, abide by the house rules, are responsive by text/email, and can send me an invoice via venmo, square, paypal, etc. if they aren’t paid the night of. As in any career, being a professional will take you far and doesn’t go unnoticed. Act like you know.
  8. DIY – Do it yourself, alright so you are determined to get on. You don’t do “Pay To Play” showcases (never do p2p showcases), you’ve hit the Open Mics on a weekly basis for a few months now. You’ve gone to nearby cities to try to get a feel for a different crowd. You’ve done everything I’ve said above before, and then some… At this point, I’d suggest trying to throw your own event. Now event production and coordinating is *NOT* for everybody, and *NOT* to be taken lightly. I cannot emphasize enough how much we don’t need more poorly put together functions that hang on by a thread and waste people’s time and money. I’m also not saying that if nobody will book you, then you book yourself. What I am saying is, if you have established a bit of a name for yourself, you can draw a decent 15-50 person paying crowd, and you’ve made a few connections through the events you’ve supported. Maybe it’s in your best interest to produce your own function. Find a venue, work out a deal, run it by a few friends to make sure it’s a solid one, book yourself to perform and a few supplemental acts that make sense for your sound or theme of the night. I know when doing talent booking and artist management/development with people who have no names. I was able to build names for them by producing a series that featured them as residents or near-headliners. You can do this for yourself without too much difficulty, but I really only suggest taking this route once you’ve reached the minimum requirements mentioned above, and already do everything else listed within this post. I’d hate to hear you followed a beat junkies blog posting from some guy named spiv and got evicted because you put your rent on the line and had a poorly designed flyer and a weak lineup with no gas.
  9. Be Yourself.¬†– Most of this stuff above is self-explanatory, or one would think. Unfortunately, I see these tools of the trade get tangled up and forgotten very rapidly, especially when one gets a little shine. At the end of the day, people will book you based on who you are. If they aren’t booking you, it doesn’t mean nobody likes you, it means you’ve got room for improvement. Never stop practicing and progressing to be the best you, that you can be. If you’re not seeing the results in what you’re doing, change what you’re doing, or how you’re doing it, until you see the response you want to receive. The Los Angeles and New York markets for music are savage, and the fakes, jakes, and snakes get weeded out quickly. You have to learn before you earn, and always keep a guard up. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. No party or event is worth losing sleep over. Overcompensating for accomplishments you don’t have yet, is unnecessary and you are only as good as your word, so keep that shit golden. None of the things mentioned in this article prevent you from being yourself, and at the end of the day, the real ones get the work.

Maybe in the next Artist Essential piece on The Beat Junkies site, I’ll we can break down the differences between expectations and duties of Agents, Managers and Publicists.

I hope you enjoyed the first Artist Essentials posting on The Beat Junkies blog. 

I’ll leave you with this last nugget of advice. At the end of the day,¬†It’s all about how you serve it up.

If you have the worst food in the world and it looks amazing — People will give it a shot.

If you have the best food in the world, and it looks like shit — People won’t touch it.

Swap out food with Events, Music, Art, Film, Photos, etc¬†and the lesson is the same. Presentation, Connection, and Communication are Keys To Success. Don’t do anything rushed or forced, don’t put out half-assed looking event flyers or album artwork. Spend a little extra time and money on things you value most, so others can recognize that when they feel, see, and hear the¬†product you are delivering, especially when that product is yourself.

Hope this helps you land more bookings, ¬†as it has for a handful of others whom I see living off of their craft. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

For anyone with a problem with this article, they can check out my friends video¬† – Otherwise, we’re back in a week, next Wednesday with another post. If you missed my last one, you can check it out 5 Artists You Should Know¬†

-Spiv

Wanna reach out? 
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