We settled on three compositions that provide virtual songwriting lessons from John Lennon: “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away,” “Julia,” and “Watching The Wheels.” Read More.
As a musician, it’s important to listen to music genres outside of your own. The term “bimusical” has been coined to express a degree of fluency in different styles of music, and there are compelling reasons to aspire to being bi. Read More.
From his earliest work to his successful career as a solo artist and collaborator, the simplicity of George Harrison’s songwriting belies the brilliance of one of popular music’s great artists. Read More.
Sometimes you may need a prompt or a process to keep the creative juices flowing and get your critical mind out of the way. Here are three strategies to get your songwriting on track. Read More.
Paul McCartney’s bass playing genius never wavered, but his choices as a bass player post-Beatles show his focus is more on the song and serving the melody. Read More.
Paul McCartney’s bass lines became an integral part of the Beatles’ evolution from world beating pop band to musical pioneers. We identify just what Paul did to make his parts stand out from what other bassists were doing at the time. Read more.
A personal exploration into this writer’s lack of enthusiasm for performing live. It’s been a part of my life for over 30 years, I’ve been at this for so long. I’ve been practicing with my buddy and collaborator for three years, and we can be impressive when we play to our strengths. – what’s holding me back? Read more.
Few would argue that the drumming of Ringo Starr was one of the most singular aspects to the band’s music. We’re here to make that argument. Ringo’s playing added shape and texture to the band’s iconic recordings while carefully creating patterns and dynamics to create and resolve tension within each song. Read more.
“Check out my new single on SoundCloud!” If you’re part of the music industry, you’re either guilty of sending out this message or you’re constantly receiving tweets of it with minor variations. It begs the ultimate question: “Why should your message prompt me to follow your link over any of the other identical messages I receive?” Read more.
From being able to sort by vocal range and high or low note, the graphic with the keyboard and the chart layout is impressive stuff. From the same folks who brought us the “100 Years of Rock” infographic, here’s another interactive gem that’s worth a few minutes of your time. Read more.
This amazing infographic is an exhaustive exploration of just about every genre of music you can imagine – and a ton you’ve never heard of – with music clips and animation to help you connect any given musical style to its influences and the styles it spawned. Read more.
Considering that Jason Mraz has won a Grammy and holds the record for the longest standing single on the top 100 charts, you’d think he’d have profound advice about reaching stardom. But, delightfully and surprisingly enough, Jason told me something so simple, yet so memorable. “I don’t know a thing about how to make it in the music business. All I know is that I do what I love with all my heart.” Read more.
You 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.
When someone asks you to describe your music, think carefully before you drop the word “eclectic.” It may be true that you have a variety of music influences and inspirations, but be specific. “Eclectic” as a catchall can confuse the issue and give the impression that the tracks on your album are stylistically all over the map – or worse, that perhaps you are all over the map and are uncomfortable defining your own music. Instead, try to look for the common threads and the ways you bring your musical influences together. Read more.
At some point, every musician finds themselves studying, or perhaps copying, another’s music. This isn’t too different from apprentices studying with the Masters during the Renaissance. Except today, we usually don’t get to be in the same room as the person we’re studying.
It’s often said that imitation is the greatest means of flattery, but for those in the creative business, imitating too well can also be interpreted as plagiarism. Another expression I’ve heard several times is that stealing from one person is plagiarism, stealing from many is influence. Read more…