Thursday, June 10, 2010


Yes, I have to make songwriting a priority each day. It's what I love, what I want to accomplish, who I want to be. So why do I have to get everything else done before I can write? If there's dishes in the sink, I do the dishes before I can write. I have to have a clear space in my head before I can concentrate and get into the "zone".
Lately, I've come up with a lot of projects to work on which have been distracting me - for instance, I created a web page with a dozen or so of my top songs, so that I can email the link to whomever might be looking for songs in one easy click. It's laid out very professionally, and all the songs are on a table on one screen. It took me about 4 hours to do. I emailed it to a TV/film guy in LA and he wrote back "I'll keep you on file". A 10 second reply for my 4 hours of work...but it's good I have it. But projects like that take time, and are part of my songwriting journey. They are a necessity actually, songwriting alone is not going to get my songs out in the world.
There's so many hats a songwriter must wear, and being successful in business and marketing is, unfortunately, one of them. I've never been good at marketing, as so few creative people are. But I have to improve my business skills if I want to be successful in this field. I talked to my boyfriend, who runs a successful business, and interviewed him about business skills. I learned a lot from him. And I also have a motto: What would Dolly do? hehe...Dolly Parton is my mentor (she just doesn't know it yet). I aspire to be as creative and successful in business as Dolly, plus have her winning personality and charitable giving. So I'm trying to think like a successful person in every aspect.
Here's the hats a songwriter must wear (in my opinion):
- creativity - duh...that's a given
- technical know-how in the craft of writing (there's got to be a balance between creativity and technical know-how)
- music skills - best to play an instrument (I'm sorry, I just don't how you can call yourself a songwriter if you don't have any music skills - go take guitar lessons or something already!)
- personable - how else you gonna get your foot in the door? You can't be too shy
- confidence - you've got to believe in yourself
- business know-how - that's just the bottom line, you gotta know how to succeed in business
- good leadership skills - you've got to direct the band, the recording engineer all while keeping a smile on your face. You want to be respected right? You can't be bossy or unsure of yourself either.
- recording knowledge - you gotta go in the studio with an idea of the arrangement of the song, or you're literally putting your life in someone else's hands. I used to let the engineer or demo guy arrange and produce the song, and then I'd have to pay him and the musicians whether I liked the outcome or not. That gets expensive! And then you may have to do the song a second time to get it the way you want it.
- emotionally/spiritually balanced - don't be a diva or drama queen or flaky or any of the qualities associated with creative personalities. Learn to behave yourself in a balanced and professional way - get up, get going, show up on time, treat people with respect, learn to be a giving person, be clean and professional in your appearance, be courteous of others...
There's much more, but I'll write more later. Gotta get going. Trying to schedule my time wisely today so I can write later on!!

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