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Cheryl B. Engelhardt

Don’t Be Afraid of Your Own Crazy Ideas

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt August 9, 2013

Crazy idea guyI’ve come up with so many borderline crazy ideas, like doing an intimate show in a hot air balloon and auditioning for movies just to offer my film scoring skills. Many (nearly all) of these ideas did NOT make it off the ground, and I had to stop looking at those as failures. But thinking of crazy ideas to get results can get tiring… until one works. Read more.

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Make the Most of a Music Internship

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt May 31, 2013

Music internship Most anyone can offer a music internship, or participate in one. If you are a composer, a singer-songwriter, a member of a band, etc., and have a bunch of stuff that you keep putting off: like making posters, booking a tour, or reaching out to licensing companies, you have a lot to gain from having an intern. On the flip side, no matter how old you are or what your experience level, if you’re looking to dive deeper into the music biz, you could benefit from being an intern. Read more.

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Who Influences Your Music Most?

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt April 3, 2013

Musical inspirationYou know that question people ask musicians “who influences you most”? Well, I’ve never been able to answer it. For a while I thought I’d just list what music I grew up listening to, as that must have made an impact on my writing style. Later, I started listing musicians whose music I currently am into because I must be trying to be more like them if I am a fan, right? Read more.

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How to get your music video viewed 1,000 times in one day

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt February 20, 2013

CherylsVideoMusic promotion isn’t just about amazing content, it’s about how you share it. Let’s assume you have high quality content, like a music video posted on YouTube that you just spent weeks pouring your heart and soul into, and it hasn’t quite gone viral yet. How can you boost views, downloads, and likes without bugging the heck out of your fans or spending a gazillion dollars on ads? Read more.

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Saving Money While Touring

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt February 13, 2013

TourMoneyTraveling to play music gigs is expensive. Being on the road also takes a lot of planning, time, energy, and day-of alertness for travel plans to be flawlessly executed. Whether touring around your favorite regions of the globe or traveling to a far off city for a music conference, there are a few tricks and tips that can help make your travels go smoothly, and keep your bank account afloat at the same time. Read more.

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Writing Jingles – The Process Explained

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt January 30, 2013

Composer Today, a typical jingle is only part of advertising music content. You will also hear underscores, or music created specifically for the video. You may also recognize a favorite song, or discover a new band to like in the thirty seconds that an iPod ad plays, or hear a cool rendition of a favorite old tune. As long as it’s memorable, musical, and arcs the same way the story of the ad arcs, you’ve got yourself some ad music. In this article, I am going to focus on the process of creating new music (either an underscore or a jingle) for an ad. Read more.

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My Anti-Resolution to Ditch the One Big Goal

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt January 11, 2013

My Anti-Resolution to Ditch the One Big GoalNew Year’s Resolutions — they’re created with the best intentions. To do better, live better, be better. They hang over our heads, guilt us into temporary action, and for 92% of Americans, they’re a distant memory by Valentine’s Day. These resolutions tend to be vague goals with no real measurable result, like "lose weight," "fall in love," or "be a better friend," and they can get in the way of the one thing that can bring us what we want: a commitment to a purpose. Read more.

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Why you want a music video

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt November 12, 2012

Music videos never seemed like something I should pursue. I never understood how they could translate into sales or revenue, and I certainly didn’t know how to come up with an idea that wasn’t a literal translation of my lyrics – “all I have to say is I love you” only invokes an image of two people running at each other in slow-mo, arms open for an embrace… cheese city. Read more.

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Thoughts on Writer’s Block From One Songwriter to Another

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt September 5, 2012

You may not think it’s possible to write on demand. You may or may not believe you have a muse that sits in the back of your room when you are feeling the creative flow, and is on a lunch break when you’re not. Trust me, I’ve gone through all the possibilities of why I often feel like a magnet drawn to my piano and writer’s pad, and why at other times, I’d rather crawl into bed, clean my bathroom for the third time, or do my taxes before sitting at that bench with a pencil in hand. What gives? Don’t I have any control of this? Read more.

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Green Living as an Indie Musician

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt July 16, 2012

While the music industry isn’t typically singled out as a major environmental offender, gas, plane rides, electricity for amps and mixing boards, and trash from food packaging are just a few ways we indie musicians carve out our dreaded carbon footprint. And as folks with some prominence and the capacity to play to crowds, we have the ability to make others (our audience) more conscious of ways to go green by speaking up and setting an example. Read more.

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You’re in the music business, so act like a business person

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt July 3, 2012

Like it or not, if you are interested in how to make money with music, you are officially in the music business. Now, the “music” part of the phrase “music business” is not a free pass for showing up late, writing emails with incomplete sentences, smelling grungy for a meeting, and having disorganized finances. The “business” part of that phrase is the part we indie musicians often overlook. You’ve got the music bit covered. Read more.

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The Weight of “Opportunity” (or, could the music industry ruin my wedding?)

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt June 27, 2012

If you thought the music industry was the only line of business where men are a majority, small opportunities are seized with desperate passion, money is hard to come by (unless you’re in the top 1%), and you live and breathe your passion… it ain’t. This Fall, I’m getting married to a mountain guide, and let me tell you, the mountain guiding industry is exactly the same. Read more.

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Why We Indie Musicians Never Fail

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt June 6, 2012

I was just working on an article comparing some out-of-the-box promotion ideas; the ones that were successes and the ones that were failures. The thing is, I couldn’t think of a single “failure.” And it’s not because I think I’m some huge indie music success. It’s simple: When we’re still trying, we never fail. Read more.

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Busting Through the Plateau – or, How To Get a Music Career Back on Track

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt May 30, 2012

As a musician I wake up every day and say, “What am I going to do today that will push my music career forward?” The worst feeling is when I can’t answer that question. Like now. I’m at a point where I feel like I’ve reached out to all of my music industry contacts, tapped out my fans, and done everything I can think of doing. I know there is more to be done and I don’t know what it is, and I’ve reached some creative/career exhaustion that’s making me not want to do anything, anyway. Long story short: I’m stuck. Read more.

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Freshen Up Your Live Show – 5 Ways To Spruce Up Your Live Music Performance

by Cheryl B. Engelhardt May 1, 2012

Spring cleaning is not just for ridding your closets of worn sneakers, destroying dust bunnies, and scrubbing windows. I like to take the “It’s spring, I MUST clean something” energy and put it towards something other than the grossest stuff in my apartment. This year, it was my live show.

There are lots of reasons to want to freshen up your live show. Maybe you hit a point where you are performing songs off your new-but-not-that-new record and feel like the show is getting stagnant – not just for you but for your fans. Or maybe you feel like you haven’t found the sweet spot of what your live show should be. Perhaps you want to experiment a bit but don’t know how. Read more.

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