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The Muse's News

Issue 10.6 - September 2007
ISSN 1480-6975

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This issue sponsored by:
Enter the International Songwriting Competition Today!


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I n   T h i s   I s s u e :

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@-- Editor's Musings
@-- Music Reviews - Alex Jasperse, Rick Marchetti, Chip Withrow,
                    & Jon Stewart
@-- New Artist Spotlight Additions
@-- Songwriting Book Review - by Ed Teja
@-- Musical Notes - Songwriting Contests & Market Info.
@-- Muse's Clues - Songwriting Web sites that inspire - brought
    to you by singer/songwriter & teacher, Irene Jackson.
@-- Featured Article - Co-Writing for Bags of Money (Or Not) 
                     - by Alan P. MacLeod
@-- On Site Featured Article - An article already online for your
    viewing pleasure.
@-- Classifieds & Useful Services
@-- Contact information
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ISSN 1480-6975. Copyright 1998-2007 - Jodi Krangle. 
For more contact information, see end of issue.
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FIND WHAT YOU NEED AT THE SONGWRITING STORE ON THE MUSE'S MUSE

All sorts of products and services especially for songwriters,
negotiated so that you get the best price possible.  Find means
of promotion and distribution, songwriting aids, educational
products, musical instruments and their accessories, and lots
more!

       http://www.musesmuse.com/songwriting-store.html 
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S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e :
 
(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)
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INTERNATIONAL SONGWRITING COMPETITION (ISC) NOW ACCEPTING ENTRIES

The International Songwriting Competition (ISC) is now accepting
entries for the 2007 competition. Offering better exposure,
bigger prizes ($150,000 (US) - including $25,000 (US) cash) and
the best judges for any songwriting competition in the world.
Judges for 2007 include: Tom Waits; Robert Smith (The Cure);
Loretta Lynn, Frank Black (Pixies) Nelly Furtado, and 7 record
label presidents from major and independent records labels. 

For entry information and a complete list of judges please visit
- http://www.songwritingcompetition.com/

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E d i t o r ' s   M u s i n g s :

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Hi folks.  Some things I wanted to mention before getting into
the meat of the newsletter:

First off, if you've been visiting the site and getting
"Suspended - CPU Quota Overusage" errors (I know I've seen them
myself), please be patient.  Unfortunately, when I switched to
the new host, I didn't anticipate that they wouldn't be able to
handle the traffic on this site.   That's a true
disappointment as I was hoping to *save* money - not spend more
of it.  But it's time for The Muse's Muse to graduate, it seems.
I'm in the process of moving to a dedicated server.  There should
be no interruptions for you guys since I won't be switching
things to point to the new server until everything's actually up
and running properly ... but I wanted to warn you as there will
likely be a short hiccup at some point during the actual switch.

I thank you all hugely for the patience you've shown over the
last several months as the kinks are ironed out.  Hopefully,
this next switch to the dedicated server will be the LAST switch
in a LONG time.  (I'm keeping my fingers crossed.)

As another added bonus to the website, I've also created some
further "Guides" for both singers and guitarists.  They can be
found at http://www.musesmuse.com/guitarists-guide.html and
http://www.musesmuse.com/singers-guide.html .  I put them
together because I'm often asked questions about where folks can
find resources in regards to either singing and guitar playing as
it relates to their songwriting.  There are various resources
here for both, so I thought I'd compile them as I did for the
Beginner's Guide (http://www.musesmuse.com/res-beginners.html)
and the Guide for Pros (http://www.musesmuse.com/res-pros.html).
I hope you'll check them out when you get a chance.  And if you
have any suggestions for additions to them, I'd love to hear from
you.

I also wanted to ask for your advice out there. :)  I don't do
this a lot through my own newsletter, but I'm interested in
getting into voice-over work and have purchased a booklet and CD
package from a fellow named Mike Kirby, here in the Toronto area.
I would *love* to hear from anyone who might have advice on how
to make a voice-over demo, know of a studio that does this sort
of thing in the North Toronto, Aurora or Newmarket area (I know
it's a long shot, but I have to at least try) or anyone that does
voice-over coaching.  My first order of business is to make a
demo - but I'm not sure how to accomplish that.  Any helpful
advice would be *greatly* appreciated.

I do sing, I'm very familiar with studio environments and I've
done work for the CNIB (Canadian National Institute for the
Blind) reading books on to tape.  I've also done the voice for a
telephone answering system (that was fun!) but it was quite some
time ago.  For samples of my singing, you can visit
http://www.musesmuse.com/jodi.html .  I'm not worried that I
don't have the voice for the work. ;)  I just want to know more
about how to get started.  Thanks, guys!

Moving right along, here are the raffle winners this month:

* Steve Fisher, from Wolcottville, IN, has won a copy of 
Virtual Studio Systems' Lyricist software
(http://www.musesmuse.com/vss-review.html).

* Nicole Y. O'Healy from Hubbard, OR, has won a free 3 month
membership to SongU.com, an Internet-based learning environment
providing online coaching, co-writing and pitching opportunities,
in addition to over 70 multi-level courses developed by
award-winning songwriters. 

* Michael Shield, from Grove City, PA, has won a copy of
Indie-Music.com's Musician's Toolkit CD
(http://www.musicianstoolkit.com/muse/)

* John Akin, from Los Angeles, CA has won a copy of
"SONG" Edited by Douglas Waterman (reviewed below)

And as I mention in every newsletter, if you'd like to be
considered for a raffle prize, please write to me and let me
know.  In that email, include your contact information so that I
know where to send the prize when it's ready for you.  And let me
know what prize most interests you (along with your second
choice, in case the first one isn't available).  All the possible
prizes are listed at http://www.musesmuse.com/musenews.html .  

Wishing you every success, 

--Jodi

Back to Menu
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S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e : 

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

NEW ONLINE SONGWRITING AND MUSIC BUSINESS COURSES AND PROGRAMS
FROM BERKLEE COLLEGE OF MUSIC

Berkleemusic.com, the online continuing education division of
Berklee College of Music, offers a number of instructor-led
online songwriting courses that provide the tools, the support,
and the practice environment you'll need to express yourself more
effectively in words and music. Berkleemusic also offers
forward-thinking business courses in music publishing, concert
touring, legal aspects, and more for musicians that want to blend
their musical ability with business savvy. Berkleemusic has also
announced the release of 2 new forward-thinking online music
marketing courses Music Marketing 101 and Music Marketing 201.

Enroll in any certificate program before August 31 and receive
$100 off the cost of your first course. Enrollment is now open
for their October 1st Term.

For more info visit: http://www.berkleemusic.com/?pid=1787

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M u s i c   R e v i e w s : Alex Jasperse, Rick Marchetti, 
                            Chip Withrow, & Jon Stewart
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NEW MUSIC REVIEWS SINCE LAST MONTH INCLUDE:

Alex Jasperse:

* Ryan Rapsys
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-ryanrapsys-novus.html
* The Pax Cecilia
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-thepaxcecilia-blessed.html


Jon Stewart:

* The Hideaways
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-hideaways.html


Rick Marchetti:

* Dr. O and the Hangsters
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-hangsters-chezjanine.html


Chip Withrow:

* Talia Segal
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-taliasegal-nonprophet.html
* Chris Fuller
http://www.musesmuse.com/mrev-chrisfuller-sangamon.html

---------------
                         ******

For bios on each of the reviewers, see
http://www.musesmuse.com/musicreviews.html . If you're considering
sending in your own CD for review, you can also view that page to
find out which reviewer reviews your genre. Thanks!

Back to Menu

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N e w   A r t i s t   S p o t l i g h t   A d d i t i o n s :  

Great music is only a click away!  
Here are just some of the great CDs highlighted in the 
Artist Spotlight section of The Muse's Muse at
http://www.musesmuse.com/artistspotlights.html 

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Ed Teja - Genre: JAZZ

Ed Teja’s music is rooted in jazz although he has played a
variety of music over the years. Earl Beecher, a long-term jazz
fan, who owns Outstanding Records, suggested fusing his smooth
guitar lines and vocal styling to create this CD.

http://www.geocities.com/edteja

(Yes, our very own reviewer!  Check it out. :))

-----

Frank Villafańe - Genre: JAZZ

Frank's instrumental Latin Jazz excursion consists of five
atypical  compositions. Each is an eclectic mix of
Afro-Cuban/Brazilian percussion, overlaid with poignant harmonic
melodies furnished by piano and vibes, and punctuated with
pulsating acoustic bass.  Mostly hot, sometimes cool, but always
engaging, South Beach is as diverse and exciting as the famous
beach for which it was named.

http://www.frankmv.com/
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S o n g w r i t i n g   B o o k   R e v i e w : by Ed Teja

SONG
Edited by J. Douglas Waterman
Preface by Rodney Crowell
http://www.writersdigest.com/ 
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SONG is a compilation of interviews with a broad spectrum of
songwriters that were originally published in American Songwriter
magazine (http://www.americansongwriter.com/) dating back as far
as 1984 and, we are told, some other sources. Waterman is the
editor-in-chief of American Songwriter, a freelance writer for
many other music magazines, and clearly deeply into the
songwriting mystique.

It is hard to generalize about the scope, or even the quality, of
these interviews. Each of the 100 interviews is an individual
piece. They were conducted by a variety of writers, and written
over a period of more than 20 years. Quite naturally, the
insightfulness, the depth, of the interviews varies with the
insightfulness of the questions, the willingness of the
interviewer to press for a candid response. As a result, some are
reasonably rich in information (given that none are very long),
and others more superficial.

The represented songwriters themselves are a diverse group,
ranging from Burt Bacharach to Sheryl Crow, Lyle Lovett and Chuck
D. Not every famous songwriter is there (although many, including
Brian Wilson and Cat Stevens, are, Neil Young and Bob Dylan are
not). Some of the songwriters actually see themselves as
songwriters and are deeply into the art of songwriting. Some are
performers who have written some hit songs. Many others lie in
between those extremes. But all have great credits. Some are very
aware of the songwriting process, while for others, it is a
haphazard affair—songwriting seems to just happen at odd times.
When asked a potentially interesting question, some songwriters
are (happily for the reader) prone to elaborate, while others
answer cryptically.

Some interviews focus on the birth of a particular well-known
song or two, others on songwriting in general. Unfortunately, a
few interviewers settled for the simple: "How did you become a
songwriter?" approach. Sometimes, the same interviewer is
brilliant with another artist, so obviously personal chemistry
played a role as well. This can make for a hit-and-miss reading
experience, but there are some true gems in these interviews. For
instance, I enjoyed Burt Bacharach's discussion about his
experiences working with Doctor Dre's loops, which discussed how
it both restricted and inspired him.

One of my favorite interviews is the very last—Ken Sharp's
interview of Bill Withers. Wither's comments are as soulful as
his songs, and although he is proud of his work, you get the
impression that he also feels fortunate his songs got heard. It
is a touching interview, in the sense that he lets you inside his
skin, if only briefly.

Naturally some of the information is a bit dated, and there are
certainly more condensed ways to get information on approaches to
songwriting. But, for a glimpse into the thoughts and some of the
work habits and approaches of some influential songwriters, it is
a great read. 

                           ******
ABOUT THE REVIEWER:
Ed Teja has been working on his own music and now his new CD --
"SOFT DREAMING BLUES" has been released released by Morrhythm
Records (http://www.outstandingmusic.com/). It's a collection of original
(written alone and with an international group of cowriters)
smooth jazz vocals and instrumentals. Ed has appeared at strange
venues in Hong Kong, Canada, St. Martin, Bequia, Venezuela,
Grenada and Trinidad, as well as the Silver City (New Mexico)
Blues festival and the Tucson (Arizona) Folk Festival.

You can hear some of Ed’s music at: http://www.myspace.com/edteja 

If you'd like *your* book reviewed (as long as it has something
to do with songwriting, of course!), please do email us and let
us know!

Back to Menu
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             S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e : 

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

SHOWCASE YOUR NEW SONGS & TUNES ON MyNewMelody.com

Listen and watch new songs by songwriters and composers worldwide 
across a wide range of musical genres including Blues, Classical,
Country, Christian, Dance, Easy Listening, Faith, Folk, Hard
Rock, Heavy Metal, Hip-Hop, Indie, Jazz, Pop, R&B, Rap, Reggae,
Rock, Ska, Soul and Urban.  Upload your own songs and build a fan
base, find other musicians to  collaborate and build new
friendships with, and find network contacts to further your own
knowledge and expose your talents. 

Join MyNewMelody.com today and get in on the ground floor of the
next MySpace, YouTube, or FaceBook - especially for songwriters!
And for a limited time, it's absolutely free!

http://www.mynewmelody.com/

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M u s i c a l   N o t e s : Songwriting Contests & Market Info.

In the interest of conserving space, I will only be including
changes to this listing in this newsletter.  All other contests
and market information that have already been listed here, are
displayed at http://www.musesmuse.com/contests.html &
http://www.musesmuse.com/markets.html . Please check there
regularly for updates!
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THE 2007 SINGER/SONGWRITER AWARDS (Round 4)

The Singer/Songwriter Awards from We Are Listening is about the
hottest international songwriting contest in the world. It's no
surprise that participating artists have gone on to sign with top
management, license their music for film and television, as well
as collaborate with renowned producers and enjoy substantial
uplifts in independent record sales. 
 
Details: http://www.wearelistening.org/singer.php
 
Deadline: Sep 2nd 2007
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NEW SONGWRITING CONTEST: INTERNET SONG OF THE YEAR

As written about in the LA Times, Internetsongoftheyear.com is
looking for America's next great music artist! Judged by 3
industry songwriters, with prize money of $100,000, plus a
recording deal. Enter to win!

For a limited time, those who enter using the promotion code of
"muse" (place that promotional code in the field marked "Payment
Information" on the page at
http://internetsongoftheyear.com/upload.php) will get a free
entry!  But only until September 2nd!
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FREE MUSIC PROMOTIONS EBOOK!

The author of The Little Black Book Of Band Profit Secrets has
come thru again! He's just published: "Co-Op Synergy Power, Your
Fast-Track To Profit, Exposure And Free Advertising..." and
musesmuse.com fans can get it for free. 
 
Click here> http://jodimuse.ssl4000.hop.clickbank.net/
 
And be sure to check out The Little Black Book Of Band Profit
Secrets while your there... It's worth the look.
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BREAKING THE BAND

We Are Listening have rounded up all of our resources for the
definitive opportunity and all-encompassing experience for
independent artists – Breaking the Band!

Imagine every song contest, licensing, press, booking, touring
and festival showcasing opportunity rolled into one. Now, imagine
playing a prime-time slot at a major US music festival, licensing
your songs to at least 3 major television networks, enjoying
extensive radio play, working 100 media outlets and receiving
months of booking and tour support.

This may be the big break you've been waiting for.
http://www.wearelistening.org/about_btb.php
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9th ANNUAL GREAT AMERICAN SONG CONTEST NOW ACCEPTING ENTRIES!

The Great American Song Contest features awards for 45 winners in
9 categories and provides over $10,000 in prizes. Music-industry
judges include prominent publishers, recording artists, producers
and songwriters. Entrants receive written evaluations of their
songs. This annual International event is sponsored by
Songwriters Resource Network, a trusted news and education
resource for songwriters everywhere. Submission deadline is Nov.
16, 2007. For details, visit: http://www.greatamericansong.com/ or e-mail
info@GreatAmericanSong.com

2006 GREAT AMERICAN SONG CONTEST WINNERS ANNOUNCED

Kathy Hussey won top honors with her touching and original song
"The Same Mary." First-Place category winners were Rachael Sage
for "93 Maidens" (Acoustic/Folk); Joey Auch for "Leaving
Carolina" (Pop); Katey Morley for "Noah" (Rock); Kathleen Lamb
for "At the Cross" (Christian/Gospel); Sean Patrick McGraw for
"Fiona" (Country); Lucas Miller for "Living In Symbiosis"
(Special Category); Kris Johnson for "My Apologies"
(Instrumental); Lyrical Eye for "Bounce" (HipHop/R&B) and Nicol
Walsh for "Mind the Gap" (Lyric Writing). Hear the winning songs
at the Great American Song Hall Of Fame here:
http://www.greatamericansong.com/
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2007 LYRIC WRITER AWARDS (ROUND 3)
 
The Lyric Writer Awards from We Are Listening is the ultimate
contest for writers seeking music publishing, co-writing and song
placement opportunities. If you long to work with professional
songwriters and dream of getting your songs cut by major label
artists, this could really be the chance of a lifetime!
 
Details: http://www.wearelistening.org/about_lwa.php
Deadline: September 13, 2007
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STUDIOTRAXX.COM: BREAKING NEW GROUND - FOR YOU!

StudioTraxx.com provides an e-commerce platform that allows
artists/bands to purchase and book time with musicians,
engineers, producers, and other music professionals for online
studio collaboration purposes. They facilitate the entire music
production process from beginning to end — from finding and
booking the right talent to managing all resulting collaboration
activities.

StudioTraxx is actively building its talent network and is
encouraging both those who offer services and those who need
services to sign up and register. There are no costs to join the
site. Creating an account is FREE. 

http://www.studiotraxx.com/?partner=837
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SONGDOOR 2007 INT'L. SONGWRITING COMPETITION

Everyone who enters receives a free self-paced songwriting course
from SongU.com and a professional song evaluation. Entry fee $10.
Grand Award: Nashville full-band demo, acoustic guitar, more - 7
category winners, too! Total prize purse more than $21,000. Visit
http://www.songdoor.com/ for details.

Entry deadline: November 15, 2007.
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THE INDIE GUIDE IS ON SALE FOR $10.95 AND INCLUDES THE INDIE
CONTACT GUIDE!

For a limited time only, North Shore Records, Inc, in celebration
of tour season and music success has put The Indie Guide on sale
for $10.95 plus shipping. The normal cost is $25.95 plus
shipping. In addition to the 190-page book, The Indie Contact
Guide, which contains thousands of contact names, address, email
addresses, phone numbers and contact names will be included. 
To Your Music Success!  http://www.theindieguide.com/
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FREE SONGWRITING, FILM, TV, AND VIDEO GAME SUBMISSIONS AT
MUSICGORILLA.COM!

MusicGorilla.com works with Songwriters, Bands, Musicians, and
Artists to get their original material into the eyes and ears of
industry members who have the ability to take their careers to
the next level. We work with Reps from all facets of the Music
Industry. Our artists have the opportunity to submit their songs
to established artists looking for new material. In addition, our
clients get access to submissions for film, TV and video games,
all of our submissions are FREE. MG Artists are eligible for free
live label showcases, digital distribution with MSN and Loudeye
and more. We don't take any piece of any deals made on our site,
and have had many successes including placement, songwriting and
publishing deals.

Muse's Muse artists get 10% off of memberships!
Just enter the promotional code "muse" during registration.
http://www.musicgorilla.com/ 
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SONGWRITING CONSULTATION SPECIAL OFFER: 

Pete & Pat Luboff will pay for the phone call for Muse's Muse
songwriters who use the Luboffs' songwriting consultation
service. The service provides detailed, constructive song
analysis, answers to all your creative and business questions and
references to contacts when appropriate. Visit
http://www.writesongs.com/consults.htm for more information.

Back to Menu
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M u s e ' s    C l u e s :  by Irene Jackson

©1998-2007 Moonstone Productions All Rights Reserved. 
Used By Permission

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The web has certainly become a place to "meet" and collaborate
with other songwriters and musicians, but nothing really beats
meeting each other face-to-face from time to time.  Open mics are
certainly a good place to share your songs with the rest of the
world, but songwriter's circles can be even better.  What's the
difference between them?  Some might say not much.

But there are things you can do in a songwriter's circle that you
can't at an open mic.  An open mic is usually more public, a
circle doesn't have to be.  You can take the time to critique
each other, provide some feedback in a circle, whereas an open
mic is really just a performance. 

Anytime someone asks me about getting feedback on their songs, I
always mention trying to find a songwriter's circle near to where
they live.  Some of the larger organizations like NSAI and BMI
will occasionally host similar events in bigger cities, which
will often include better known songwriters and then the rest of
us.  :-)   But a down-home circle where everyone can participate
on an even playing field is a great experience.  A songwriter
does not have to be a performer, and other songwriters already
know and understand that.

Having said all of that, here are a few websites where you might
get a feel for how a circle might work.  The first is a YouTube
website called (what else?) SongWritersCircle
(http://youtube.com/user/SongWritersCircle) that is a real and
regular event called Summit County Songwriter's Circle which
takes place in Akron, Ohio.  This particular one has more of a
"performance" feel to it, but you can get a sense of the quality
of writers and songs that show up for this event.  If you have
your own YouTube video or account, you can sign up with them to
receive updates whenever they post new videos there.  If you are
at all familiar with YouTube, you know that you can also make
contact with others in that way.  An excellent way to meet! 

The next one is one of the oldest (and I imagine one of the
biggest) songwriter circles around--The New York Songwriter's
Circle.  I found a MySpace website for them
(http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofil
e&friendID=104390668
), which included a feature video that appeared on the local news, and a whole bunch of information on events past and present. This is one of those "big name" events where someone like Norah Jones or Lisa Loeb might show up a night or two! Last of all, I'd like to point you to a songwriters circle that I have attended in past. This one takes place in Nanaimo, British Columbia in Canada--the Nanaimo Songwriter's Circle (http://www.songwriterscircle.ca/). It's an example of a very local, intimate but consistently attended circle that you might very well find the likes of where you live. They even have a radio show that runs on Friday mornings, 7-9am PST (http://www.chly.ca/songwriters_circle.php) that you might like to listen in on sometime :-) These are great people who love music, and who take the time to organize events whenever they can for the benefit of others. And that's the beauty of the best of them! If you live in a smaller community and can't find anything like this close to you, why not consider starting one yourself? It doesn't have to be a formal gathering, in fact, casual works a lot better. All you need is a place to meet, a pot of coffee and some cookies, and a few nervous songwriters who want to share their creations. :-) Meet once every month or two and see what happens. If nothing else, you'll probably make some good friends! And who knows? Maybe one day we'll figure out a way to start a virtual one. ****** Irene Jackson is a performing songwriter from Victoria, BC in Canada. Aside from writing, recording and performing, she also maintains a website for songwriters that includes tips, articles and a songwriter's messageboard. Songwriting Tips: http://www.irenejackson.com/tips.html Homepage: http://www.irenejackson.com/ Songs: http://www.soundclick.com/irenejackson Back to Menu ================================================================= F e a t u r e d A r t i c l e : by Alan P. MacLeod © 2007 Co-Writing for Bags of Money (Or Not) ----------------------------------------------------------------- Part One - Starting to Co-Write: -------------------------------- I am a little luckier than some when it comes to co-writing songs as 90% of my experiences have been positive, before and after I joined the Songwriters Association of Canada. I understand why some folks might be wary. Co-writing is a creative process involving creative people with opinions and egos so perhaps it is reasonable to be a little wary. However, even in the most terrible sessions I've ever heard about, no one died. Your talent will not suddenly vanish after a bad co-writing session. Really, the risks are tiny and the potential rewards (a great song, improving your craft, clicking with a new creative partner) are huge. Like many, I generally write alone. Words and music. But I've also co-written for many years. Just in the past month, I've co-written with two artists, one in person and one via email and phone. Five, decent, new songs now live that otherwise wouldn't have been born. I've never been able to write that many decent songs in that short a time on my own! The only annoying aspect is that I don't get bags of money delivered to my house the day after a song is finished, but that's the same with every song, eh? Picking your co-writers is the first step. At open mics and songwriter events, you'll get to hear what others are writing. Listen. When you recognize some aspect of another's song that you appreciate or admire, chat them up! Talk about writing. Find out how they write and what they do when they write. You'll have something in common, completely different approaches, or, a mix of both. Some folks like to work in 4-hour chunks. Others will go until they drop. Knowing how you write when you are alone will help you when you write with others. If you need absolute silence, bring a set of earplugs and wood shop safety headphones for you to wear. If you need to play one chord 1,000 times or need a beat looping at 100 db just to concentrate, bring headphones and wood-shop safety headphones that fit over your headphones. (You'll look great!) The only rule to co-writing is that you make the rules together and you change the rules together. Actually, perhaps the overriding rule is respect. You've got to respect the people you're co-writing with, respect their talent, opinions and/or approach. You don't have to agree with everything they ever do or say. But, if you don't respect them or their talent, you won't value their contributions; the co-writing session will seem long, frustrating and non-productive. A good co-writing session can keep you pumped up for days. You'll learn more about yourself. You'll learn more about the creative process. These are the kinds of lessons that make you a better songwriter. Part Two - The Co-Writing Session Begins: ----------------------------------------- When co-writing songs face to face, agree on a time, place and session length in advance and arrive there on time with tools in hand, ready to go. Think positive. The place should be quiet, comfortable and free of (human and non-human) distractions. Having to stop and move can be a creativity killer, so choose a place that can be "yours" for the full session time. Co-writing in person, in the same room at the same time, is best for me. We can feed off each other's energy. We can read facial and body language and react accordingly. When one of us goes blank, the other has an idea that gets us going again. Working via email there's always the chance that a comment I type might be taken the wrong way, so I generally follow up with a phone call just to be sure all is well. Some people like to start a session with a chat about life. Telling tales, jokes and stories while noting "Hey, that could be a song" and writing down these ideas. At some point, someone says, "Well, we'd better get started." The ideas are reviewed, one is chosen, and you begin to build a song. Some people like to start with riffs, hooks and beats. They play their idea for the other(s) until one says "Hey, that's something" and you begin to build a song. Still others like to start from a title, a partial lyric/partial song and then use that to begin to build a song. Really, it's whatever works for you. We may both have guitars and/or keyboards and/or computers/paper and pen going. Other times one of us sticks to the computer and the other to the guitar or keyboard. With beat oriented songs we might keep the groove playing in the background while we write. For songs where the POV, theme and story arc guide you, silence may work best. Some connect an ambient mic to a DAT and record the whole session. Some work with one piece of paper that everyone shares. I like writing on computer, so I type in every line pitched, then cut and paste the lines ditched on subsequent pages (the boneyard) so that no line is thrown out until the song is done. I also like doing a scratch recording while we write or very soon afterward so that we can review it "off site" and consider future re-writes. I tend to play the song once a day for a while, then, at the next session, pitch ideas to make each line as strong and as clear as it can be. Remember that co-writing is like being in family court. All decisions are guided by what is in the best interests of the child. In this case, the child is the song. What is best for the song? Whatever makes it a better song is the point, not who worked the hardest or who had the best idea, or who only had one idea. Along with respecting one another, try to "play nice". Let folks finish their thought and let everyone consider the idea. Try it out before you shoot it down. A lame idea won't live long and it may actually be possible that your opinion is, ahhh, "not entirely correct". Majority rules. Be polite when you co-write. *** Coming next month: The second half of Alan's article, including: Part Three - Co-Writing, Walls and Solo Efforts & Part Four - Co-Writing ("Oops, we missed "Step #3") ***** Alan Recommends: Anything written by Pat Pattison or John Capek Joining Songwriters Association of Canada The Craft and Business of Songwriting by John Braheny © 2007 Alan P. MacLeod ~ http://www.sparklingroad.com/Back to Menu ================================================================= " O N S I T E " F E A T U R E D A R T I C L E : ----------------------------------------------------------------- Blue Collar #6 - by Mick Polich http://www.musesmuse.com/col-mickpolich-time.html What are we all trying to recapture in our musical journey? This column, Mick looks back on two time periods that shaped his vision of getting "back to where you once belonged, Loretta"! Blue Collar #7: Amps - Crank It Or Go Sit In The Corner! - by Mick Polich http://www.musesmuse.com/col-mickpolich-amps.html Finally getting to the 'tech' valley, Mick gets the ground floor swept with an intro to amps - the other half of Rock Glory!!! ---- The myth about "the poor man's copyright" and other myths - by Brian Lee Corber http://www.musesmuse.com/col-brianleecorber-myths.html Many songwriters believe they can establish and protect the copyrights in their songs by using "the poor man's copyright." That is, mailing the song to yourself in a sealed envelope. That is a really false urban legend and ought to be dispelled. There's also the myth about registering your song with a performance rights organization. This article discusses and destroys those myths. ---- Crazy Little Word Called "Shred" - by Alex Jasperse http://www.musesmuse.com/alex-shred.html How the need for speed has somehow become how we define a good guitarist. ---- Growls, Grunts and Moans - by Tim Ogle http://www.musesmuse.com/col-timogle-growl.html Don't be afraid to be "uncool" while songwriting.
================================================================= C l a s s i f i e d s & U s e f u l S e r v i c e s : ----------------------------------------------------------------- WRITE BETTER SONGS WITH MASTERWRITER AS YOUR SONGWRITING PARTNER "This remarkable piece of software turns your Mac or PC into a valuable songwriter partner" -- Richard Leiter, Keyboard Magazine If you have a high speed connection, you can download a 30-Day demo. If not, we will send you a copy for $9.95 which will be deducted from the purchase price if you decide to buy. Receive a special $70.00 discount off the $289.00 list price when purchasing through the Muse's Muse! Please use discount coupon # 3004. Endorsed by: BMI, ASCAP, NSAI, PRS and Taxi. Winner Best of Show Macworld 2003 http://www.musesmuse.com/masterwriter-songwriting-software.html ----------------------------------------------------------------- THE SUCCESSFUL SONGWRITER MOTIVATION & MEDITATION AUDIO Inspired by the songwriter's journey, and through understanding the principles talked about in "THE SECRET", this audio program is specifically created for the songwriter based on those findings. Through Power of Thought and Understanding the Law of Attraction, you will have the tools, knowledge & ability to create the thoughts, experiences, and circumstances to be a phenomenally Successful Songwriter. Included is a guided meditation that is as passionate as it is empowering! Muse's Muse Visitors - Enter Promo Code: 42567 for Discount. http://www.songwritermeditation.com/ Limited Introductory Offer of $12.95 for Digital Download Discounts for CD, and CD/Digital Download Combo shown on ordering page. ----------------------------------------------------------------- LYRICIST VERSION 3: THE SONGWRITER'S BEST FRIEND Lyricist is the first-of-its-kind word processor designed specifically for musicians, songwriters, and poets. The software includes a Rhyming Dictionary, Thesaurus, Album Categorization, Chord Charting, Chord Generator, Song Arrangement, and On-Line Copyright Link. The new version 3 release adds support for "Piano Style" chord symbols, Nashville Number System, and Transposition features - all in one easy-to-use package - and all for only $44.95! (That's $5.00 off to all Muse's News readers who purchase from the review link at www.musesmuse.com/vss-review.html!) This tool will revolutionize the way you write and organize your writing. Be the best songwriter you can be and purchase Lyricist today! http://www.musesmuse.com/vss-review.html ----------------------------------------------------------------- THE 8th EDITION OF THE INDIE BIBLE IS NOW AVAILABLE! The Indie Bible shows you where to get your music reviewed, your songs played, and your CDs sold. Now in its Seventh Edition, The Indie Bible has 330 pages of valuable contacts and music-related articles. The 8th Edition of the Indie Bible contains: 4200 publications around the world that will REVIEW your CD! 3400 radio stations around the world that will PLAY your songs! 500 vendors and services that will help you to SELL your music! 200 sites where you can UPLOAD your band's MP3 files! 500 helpful resources and sites where you can PROMOTE your band! 52 articles that will help your career to MOVE forward rapidly! Listings include web, e-mail and physical address, as well as phone and fax numbers. For details and to order online visit: http://www.bigmeteor.com/muse ----------------------------------------------------------------- REAL ANSWERS TO REAL QUESTIONS, An eBook About Copyright & Publishing If you want to know how to protect yourself as a songwriter in this digital age, you need this book - EXCLUSIVELY offered through The Muse's Muse. And it's now on sale for half price! Visit http://www.musesmuse.com/realarealq.html to learn more! ----------------------------------------------------------------- INDIE-MUSIC.COM - WHERE SERIOUS MUSICIANS SURF One of the most respected and imitated indie music sites on the web, Indie-Music.com has been serving the Independent Music Community since 1996 with streaming audio, monthly CD Reviews, huge industry search directory, success-building resources, classifieds, and much-needed recognition. The site offers a wealth of information to artists trying to survive & thrive in today's competitive music industry. http://www.indie-music.com/ ================================================================= ADVERTISING RATES: For Classifieds: US$50 Max. 8 lines, where a line = 65 characters including spaces and punctuation. All contracts must be prepaid. Write to: editor@musesmuse.com For Newsletter Sponsorship rates and other advertising opportunities, please see http://www.musesmuse.com/media.html . Back to Menu
================================================================= C o n t a c t I n f o & C r e d i t s : ----------------------------------------------------------------- Jodi Krangle ............................................. EDITOR Kathryn Obenshain ...........................GRACIOUS PROOFREADER ----------------------------------------------------------------- The Muse's News is a free monthly newsletter for and about songwriters. Subscribers are welcome to recirculate or reprint The Muse's News for nonprofit use as long as the appropriate credit is given and the ENTIRE text of the newsletter is included (including credits and information at the end of each issue). Others should contact me at editor@musesmuse.com. All articles copyrighted by their authors. Back issues and other information (how to subscribe and
unsubscribe, etc.) will be available at: http://www.musesmuse.com/musenews.html The Muse's News is part of The Muse's Muse, a web resource for songwriters: http://www.musesmuse.com/ For further information, send your e-mail to: ----------------------------------------------------------------- adinfo@musesmuse.com - How to place a classified ad, pass on market information or sponsor The Muse's News. editor@musesmuse.com - To submit articles,reviews,ideas,etc. SNAILMAIL: Please contact me first at editor@musesmuse.com ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Back issues of the newsletter can be read at the National
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