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.

trash can ending

The power of a trash can ending

If you are a creative artist, you’ll probably put an original and clever ending on some of your songs – fade outs, unresolved chord progressions, or bleed-ins to the next song, for example. In a recording studio, I say go for it! But live, more often than not, it’s a mistake. Putting a clever ending on a song can sometimes confuse your audience. They don’t know for sure if the song’s over, so you only get a small smattering of hesitant applause. 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.