Hey there. If this hits a nerve, resonates in any way, let me know. I’d love to hear what you think and where you are in finding a balance between rushing and waiting…
I used to be in a rush ALL the time. Probably because I had this innate understanding of my internal clock. As a female, we’re reminded of it constantly. “How long have you been married? Oh, that’s a long time. Any kids soon? You’re not getting any younger”. And as a musician I used to be told only young artists get developed, found, and famous. Continue reading
I started to write this article a few times now and have come to understand that I really just want one thing – to let you know that you are not alone in looking for purpose. I want to do this by sharing some massive changes in my life and how circumstances forced me to make choices I wish I had made earlier.
I always thought I had chosen music as a career because I had to, because it was in my blood, because I loved music with my heart and soul. but that wasn’t it. In reality, it kind of fell into my lap, and I had a deep desire to be… cool.
The cool factor, like many of the things driving our actions, came from a lack… a lack of ‘cool’ early on in my life. I was that super dork who liked studying, who started a conservation club, who was co-president of the drama club, and ran cross country. And as for the boys I dated… oh wait, there were none. I had crushes on guys who never looked my way.
My dad going slalom on the Hudson river.
My dad, though…he was cool. That I knew. He water skied, restored classic cars, played the upright bass, and – even though he never studied piano – he could sit at it and just play. He’d listen to all of my songs and mixes and live performances and have the most insightful comments. There were very few of them, as he wasn’t a verbose man, but when he spoke, it was gentle, true, and to the point. Continue reading
I’m gonna cut to the chase on this one… Here are 11 free online tools for creating branding assets and managing your marketing efforts that every musician should know about! “Marketing” is no longer a scary word used only by advertising executives. Indie musicians need good branding to rise above the masses of people able to easily post music. These are sites, platforms and resources I use all the time to help create and track my marketing efforts that are either totally free or free to try: Continue reading
You may have thought that you only need a plan when you are mapping out travel logistics for your next tour, or when you’re coordinating who’s bringing what dish to the next family holiday gathering, or when you are scheduling a record release. But we make plans to actually prevent chaos, increase efficiency, and see better results. And as musicians, we can use as much help as we can to create consistency in our schedules and to boost the productivity that we are so often generating on our own.
So why not make a daily success plan? Continue reading
I’m writing this for anyone who has changed his or her plans after graduating from college. For anyone who has studied one thing and has gone on to do something slightly (or extremely) different. And especially for anyone who, like me, has gotten a lot of crap for making those choices. Continue reading
I’m often asked “what do you do, exactly?”. There are two groups of people who generally ask this: 1) people who know me, or think they know me, and then stop for a second and realize they cannot quite grasp how I spend my time and 2) musicians. This article, my friends, is for all of you.
Before I begin, let me preface this with the following: My life is a roller coaster. Most of the time I’m working, or, at the very least, working on getting work. Then there are times where I just want to give up, lie on the couch, watch Netflix and declare that It’s Time To Get a Real Job – with an exasperated “I can’t take this music thing any more!”. This happens monthly. It’s my occupational period. It always passes. No one ever knows about it. And it’s normal. Continue reading
Whether you’re in your first year teaching piano students or your 50th year, here seven great tools and resources that every piano teacher needs to keep new students rolling in and sticking around for the long haul!
1. This worksheet bundle. Have your students learning to read music in 21 days? Um, yes please! These packets are awesome and skip the acronyms (Every Good Boy etc etc) and get right to being able to read music. Perfect for all ages! Continue reading
Originally posted on Music Think Tank.
It took some effort to leave my default self in the cold streets of Harlem, prior to entering City College Of New York’s Aaron Davis Hall. The theater of 600 seats was temporarily converted into an intimate space for developing new perspectives, dropping the “music careers are hard” bullsh&t, and having conversations about success. Led by one of my favorite mentors, Emmy-winning composer Michael Whalen, and PR guru-author-badass Ariel Hyatt, the six-hour seminar consisted of two presentations, three panels of experts, four Q&A sessions, and zero breaks (save a few moments of stretching). Continue reading
For the past three years, twice a year, my company is paired with two or three Cornell undergraduate students in an alumni program Cornell calls “Externship Sponsorship”. For about a week, my workload shifts to account for planning discussion sessions with my “externs”, setting up interviews with industry experts, and managing tasks that will not only provide value for them, but also contribute to my business. I love that they are called “externs” because it reminds me that this is their exit from college, even if just for a few weeks, to explore a new industry, to examine other fields of their interests and see what else is possible. “Intern” seems to be such a corporate word implying someone is coming “in” to help me. (You can read my article on my own internship experience here.) While they’re here, we do interchange “intern” and “extern” often, but the sentiment is there- this is for them. Continue reading
As a freelancer and small business owner, I have always struggled with structure. The kind that has me change out of my pjs, that tells me when I should be pitching for new work, when I should be creating more content, or when I should be marketing what I already have created. The kind of structure that makes sure I am working efficiently and not just busily. Enter the 50 Hour Challenge.
Workflow for freelancers, work-from-home career folks, and musicians has always been a topic of great interest to me. I have tried everything to get the most structure as I could, from scheduling every minute of my day to having accountability buddies check in with me. My tricks and tactics worked to keep me in line and in action, but I was still not seeing the results I wanted. I knew that if I wanted different results, I needed to take different actions. Continue reading