song intros

Focus on song intros for your live performances

A good intro will set up what is going to happen next. With most artists and most songs, it’s one of the first parts of a song I need to rearrange. We want to capture and engage the audience, make sure people are with you. I use the analogy of a mother hen gathering her chicks, making sure they are with her and together before she crosses the street, rather than just taking off and hoping they follow. Read more.

Owning the crowd: music performance tips from the “One Man Sideshow”

Owning the crowd - tips from David Darwin You might have great songs and finely-honed chops, but engaging an audience from the moment you walk on stage until the moment your last note fades is another skill entirely. Here are tips from David Darwin (AKA The One Man Sideshow) for indie artists on what to do before, between, and during songs to make your entire music performance as powerful as your individual songs might already be. Read more.

live music performance

What to do when the song is over

The moments after the song is over present a crucial opportunity to build momentum for your show, and it’s one that many music performers tend to miss. You need to learn how to put pressure on the audience and accept applause. This means that the ending should intentionally ask the audience to applaud – you’ll use non-verbal cues. Read more.

9 things you should never do on stage

Music performance no nosWhile it’s good to know what you should be doing to advance your music career, it’s also important to be aware of the things you should avoid. With that in mind, I want to share with you nine mistakes I’ve seen musicians make during a music performance. I’ve tried to leave personal opinion out of it, instead focusing on what will make for a poor show for your audience. After all, it’s them you’re there to entertain, right? Read More.

music gigs

Making Money: Merch, Music Gigs, and Your DIY Tour

The most important thing to do when dealing with money is to make sure to write EVERYTHING down. A good way to keep tabs is to put all the info in Excel. We divide it into date, gas, food, lodging, salary (how much we pay our musicians), pay (from the venue), CD sales, t-shirts, tips, extra. At the end of each day we total it up. There are two main ways to make money as a band: 1) Guarantees/door/bar percentage, and 2) Selling merchandise. Read more.

working the crowd

Working the Crowd… Offstage

Before he goes on to play, Tony Bennett walks out and greets audience members in the foyer and thanks people profusely for coming to see his show. Outreach like that is really admirable. It shows appreciation and really creates a bond with audience members. I’m in favor of that approach with more of a human touch, not having the star being tucked away and untouchable. Read more.