The Muse's News
||The Muse's News
Copyright 1998-2015 - Jodi Krangle.
For more contact information, see end of issue.
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(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)
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“Producers have Pro Tools. Writers have Word. Songwriters have MasterWriter.”
Welcome to another issue, folks. I hope you've had a wonderful July filled with lots of good music and songwriting inspiration (preferably not of the heartbreak kind! ).
I'm going to keep this short and sweet because there's a ton of great stuff to get to in this month's newsletter. But before I go, I'll mention again that I hope you'll check out my new CD if you have a chance. (And that page has the added interest of being associated with my voice over website, if you're interested in what I do for my day job. ;) )
As for the raffle this time around, I only have one raffle winner - which means those of you who might be interested in a raffle prize should really write to me to ask about it. That's all you need to do - ask. Really. Instructions are just below the raffle winner listed here - so I look forward to hearing from you!
The winner this month is:
Here's to a hugely successful August!
DO YOU WANT TO WIN A RAFFLE PRIZE? You don't get if you don't ask!
If you'd like to be considered for a raffle prize yourself, have a look at the various prizes offered at the top of The Muse's News webpage, decide which prizes you'd most like, and email me with your top two choices along with your mailing address so that I can get the prizes to you. Yes, it's really that simple. :) (And yes, the mailing address is kinda important. I promise it won't be used for any other reason than to send you your raffle prize - and to mention your approximate location in the notice of raffle winners you see above here.)
All the best,
(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)
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Great music is only a click away!
shoe. - Genre: POP
Here is a selection of the great artists and bands highlighted
the Artist Spotlight section of The Muse's Muse.
shoe.’s 4th self-released album “The Speed of Life” is an emotionally musically piano-driven, MotownSuper Pop/IndieRock exploration of sounds, instruments and happy accidents. Lyrically it’s about being humbled by the magnitude and speed of Life. Want the album for yourself visit, www.moreshoe.com for tracks and entire “The Speed of Life” album.
|Songwriting Book Review
By: John Thomas
Masters of Songwriting
by Dennis Robert Sinnott
Dennis Robert Sinnott has been in the music business for a long time. 39 years at the time of the writing of this book (2008), to be exact, including work in the music publishing industry in London during the heyday of the 1970s.
That being the case, one would hope that he has some useful nuggets of information on how to write
a great song, and, fortunately for us, he does.
In his book, Masters of Songwriting, he begins by talking about what it takes to succeed as a
songwriter, and it comes down to three things:
1. a desire to create,
2. the will to work, and
3. a marketing strategy for your songs.
Sinnott is up front in saying that 1 and 2 are character traits that you have to either have now or
develop. The third thing is what this book is about.
In this marketing process, he offers an early suggestion to focus on the material, not on the
quality of your demo recording. The demo is to sell the song to the artist and/or producer. The
artist will record the song to sell to the public. Also, focus on writing hits (writing standards
comes from writing a lot of songs, including writing hits). If you want to be published, you have
to write commercially viable songs. It's that simple. The songs have to sell.
This takes us to the next part of his process: know the market. Research current trends not just in
music, but in fashion. Know the news, popular catchphrases in culture. Know what is commercial at
the time. This also includes knowing what is riding high in the charts, not just in your country,
but in other countries, as well. From these reference points, you can begin to craft material that
will tap into the zeitgeist of the popular culture of your current time.
Take this market knowledge and meld into it the hit songs of the past. Not so that you can copy
them or just adapt them to the present, but so that they can inform your songwriting in the same
way current trends inform your songwriting. This time however, you want your songwriting informed
by the classic song structures and other secrets that you pick up from your research into classic
Sinnot then gives more detail about how to integrate this classic songwriting style into a modern
sentiment to create a modern hit song using hit O.T.M. songwriting method which is, basically, a way of structuring the song so that it gives the emotional variability needed to make a song
Note that what we've discussed so far is only Sinnot's discussion of the writing of the music. He also has whole sections on lyric writing, using a publisher, copyright (at least from a U.K.
perspective), contracts and negotiations, and getting paid.
At times, the discussion can seem a little short, but, if you take the time to apply the
songwriting information provided, I think you'll see improvements in how compelling your songs are.
I know that I did.
John Thomas is a songwriter, bass player, and sometimes guitarist living in Georgia.
(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)
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|Musical Notes: Songwriting Contests & Market Info.
In the interest of conserving space (when I need to), I will be including only
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 &
Please check there regularly for updates!
17TH ANNUAL GREAT AMERICAN SONG CONTEST NOW ACCEPTING ENTRIES
The Great American Song Contest features awards for 50 winners in 10 categories and provides $10,000 in Prizes. Entrants receive written song evaluations from music-industry judges, including publishers, music producers and recording artists. This international event is open to songwriters, lyricists and composers around the world and sponsored by Songwriters Resource Network, a trusted educational resource for songwriters everywhere. Submission deadline is November 20, 2015.
For details, visit: http://www.GreatAmericanSong.com
2014 GREAT AMERICAN SONG CONTEST WINNERS:
Kevin Beadles won top honors for his original song "This Might Get Loud." First-Place category winners were Jodee Lewis for "In the End" (Americana/Folk); Ryan Gelber for "Dangerous Mix Of Chemicals" (Adult Contemporary); Paul Pelc for "Magnolia Mae" (Singer-Songwriter); Lauren Brombert for "Once Bitten (Never Enough)" (Rock); Justin Froese & Nancy Montgomery for "Finally Here" (Christian/Gospel); Jason Afable & Paul Stephens for "Just Pretty" (Country); Lou DeAdder & Leo Sullivan for "Aftermath" (Instrumental); Denyse Tontz for "Mr. Hipster" (Pop); Debra Gussin & Don Grady for "Don't React" (Special Category Music); Cody Qualls for "Focus On Your Rap Game" (HipHop/R&B) and Martin Robley for "Ships" (Lyric Writing).
You can hear these winning songs on the Great American Song Hall Of Fame at: http://www.greatamericansong.com/hall-of-fame.php
CALL FOR ENTRY - SCUGOG TRIBUTE SONG WRITING CONTEST
The Scugog Council for the Arts is looking for 3 Songs in any musical genre that will show us what you love and enjoy about Scugog, Port Perry and environs. There is no fee to enter. Each winner will debut their song at the 6th Annual Mayor's Gala for the Arts on Tuesday November 5, 2015. So if you cannot attend the Gala, please don't enter. Each of the three winners will receive $500. For more details and THE RULES please go to http://scugogarts.ca/site/singersongwriter-contest/ then click on Entry Form and Rules here
THE GLOBAL SONGWRITING CONTEST IS NOW OPEN!
Welcome to The Global Songwriting Contest, an annual international competition for musicians of all ages. Unlike other songwriting competitions, GSC is limited to only 1,000 entries, allowing you better odds of winning than any other contest. With an entry fee of only $25.00 per song, it is also the most affordable of its kind. GSC is open to amateur and professional songwriters of all ages around the globe. Realizing that the music business is very difficult to break into, our prizes are cash awards. The First prize is $10,000.00.
Please visit us at: www.globalsongwritingcontest.com
Our song contest will be ongoing; as soon as one ends we start another. Because entries are limited per contest, we expect to have several rounds of competitions per year, therefore awarding thousands of dollars to winners. Entries will be judged on originality, composition, melody, and lyrics (when applicable). Your songs may be entered in 12 of our categories.
THE 12TH ANNUAL IAMA (INTERNATIONAL ACOUSTIC MUSIC AWARDS) KICKS OFF
The 12th Annual IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards) is currently accepting entries, this awards competition is judged based on songwriting, performance & artistry. Win prizes in 8 different categories: Best Male Artist, Best Female Artist, Best Group/Duo, Folk/Americana/Roots, AAA/Alternative, Instrumental, Open, Bluegrass/Country. There will also be an Overall Grand Prize winner awarded to the top winner worth US$11,000, which includes radio promotion to over 250 radio stations in US and Canada, featured on Acoustic Cafe, a syndicated radio program. You may also obtain the entry form at: http://www.inacoustic.com
OCTOBER 4-11, 2015 IRELAND LISTENING ROOM INTERNATIONAL SONGWRITERS RETREAT
A maximum of 20 songwriters will gather again on the beautiful Aran island of Inisheer, County Galway, for a week of 'Community Through Co-Writing' - with writers signed up thus far from Canada, Denmark, Germany, Portugal and Sweden. Particpants will co-write with a new partner daily, exploring varied approached to the writing process meant to expand their craft - with a focus on 'tools, not rules'.
Over 1000 songwriters from more than 20 countries have participated in Listening Rooms since 2002, from established pros seeking new inspiration to those just starting out - with numerous participants going on to tour, record and release songs in several countries as a direct result of the relationships established in these special weeks.
The Ireland week is priced at 875 Euros ($975. at current exchange rates), inclusive of workshops, housing, meals, two concerts and local transport to and from the island via Galway. Additional savings are possible through the Retreat Referral Program, where writers who successfully encourage new participants to attend receive an additional 75€. off the event price, and monthly, interest free payments are also available in order to help make participation a reality.
Further information is available at www.listeningroomretreats.com or by writing directly to retreats founder/leader Brett Perkins: firstname.lastname@example.org.
"As a professional songwriter for over 25 years I have participated in, and facilitated, many writing workshops. It's my pleasure to attest that the Listening Room retreat I attended was the most enjoyable and productive of them all."Tom Kimmel (Johnny Cash. Shawn Colvin, Joe Cocker)
FREE 4 PART SONGWRITING VIDEO SERIES
If you want to know the exact songwriting components used in songs people actually want to download and own, this free 4 Part Songwriting Video Series will teach you just that. The videos even come with cheat sheets for you to use as an easy reference next time you’re writing a song. Start watching the FREE songwriting videos (and download your cheat sheets) by clicking here.
THE 180 DAY MUSIC LICENSING CHALLENGE STARTS JULY 6TH
Jumpstart your music licensing career in the 180 Day Music Licensing Challenge led by Berklee College of Music Alumnus Aaron Davison. This six month long course on how to license your music in tv and films includes one on one coaching, daily licensing leads, in depth video tutorials, a member's forum and much more! Visit this website for more information.
WOMEN OF SUBSTANCE RADIO: PLAYING THE BEST MUSIC BY FEMALE ARTISTS IN ALL GENRES
Women of Substance Radio is an Internet Radio Station (with our own Mobile App) that has been on the air for 7 years. Our review board hand-picks the BEST music by female artists in all genres from both label artists and Indies. New music is added weekly and promoted on Social Media. We also feature videos on our blog daily. WOSRadio is a unique platform for Female Indie Artists to showcase and promote their music to targeted listeners and music buyers.
Visit: www.WOSRadio.com / Listen: www.rdo.to/wosradio
SONGWRITER CONNECTION KICKSTARTS YOUR MUSIC CAREER
Songwriter Connect will connect you to established artists near you. We are creating a new platform for songwriters and composers. The main feature will be that we will connect you to established artists near you. We also cater for local, unrecognized singers and bands who are on the lookout for talented and screened songwriters to collaborate on their next project. Register now to be one of the first songwriters on this innovative platform! www.songwriter-connect.com
A REVOLUTIONARY NEW WAY TO SHARE AND PROMOTE MUSIC
Tunii.com pays Fans to Follow and Promote Songs and is 100% FREE to join for both recording artists and music fans. Join us in our mission of making Tunii the future of the music industry where together we can all share in the success for connecting artists and fans around the world. Sign up today through this special Muse's Muse link and please check out our short “How Tunii works video” It's Easy, it's FREE and it's Fun!
BOOKING & TOURING SUCCESS STRATEGIES & SECRETS ONLINE COURSE
Getting great gigs, building your audience and selling more merchandise is exactly what your career is all about. This online course is jam-packed with 12 hours of downloadable audio mp3s and PDF Action Guides. There are 5 modules: Module 1: Tour Goals & Planning Strategies, Module 2: Routing Your Tours, Module 3: Negotiation Techniques & Contracts, Module 4: Working with Presenters, Bookers, Promoters/Advancing the Date, Module 5: Targeting Your Markets for Maximum Audiences. Plus 2 hours of bonus classes, BONUS #1: Website Maximizer-Is you’re your Website Selling You? Learn how. BONUS #2: Copy Writing: How to write fan emails, press releases and other promo copy that get responses. Bonus # 3: Three free Industry Biz Booster Monthly Mentor Interviews. And finally, weekly call-in office hours to talk with former agent, manager, author, creator, Jeri Goldstein directly, about the course and your career. Booking & Touring Success Strategies & Secrets gives you artist-tested, step-by-step strategies to help you reach your career goals and make all of your tours profitable. http://performingbiz.com.
AWARD WINNING SONGWRITER OFFERING SONGWRITING TIPS AND CRITIQUING SERVICES
Award winning songwriter Jane Eamon is offering songwriting one on one classes via Skype. These sessions are one hour in length and can cover any topic you'd like to address. From writing, to critique, to ideas and games. Or just to share your thoughts and get feedback. If you're interested in a session contact email@example.com to schedule a class.
HAVE YOU EVER STRUGGLED TO FIND THE RIGHT CHORD OR NOTE TO FIT SOMEWHERE IN YOUR SONG?
Hooktheory is a free resource that can show you how to integrate basic music theory into your songwriting process, making it easier to write catchy chord progressions and melody. Hooktheory currently consists of three main areas:
1. The Hookbook demonstrates basic principles of music theory and how they relate to popular music. It's filled with multimedia-rich content explaining musical concepts synchronized to real songs so you can hear what you are learning and make connections easier.
2. The Music Editor lets you write chord progressions in Roman Numeral notation and listen to them in any key. Add a melody, save your work, share it with friends, or export it to Garageband, sheet music, or guitar tab.
3. The Analysis Wiki is a user-generated collection of analyses of popular songs. Look up the chord progression and melody of a song, or use the music editor to create your own analyses.
Check it out now!
Muse's Clues - Richard Miller
©2014-2015 Richard Miller. All Rights Reserved.
Used By Permission
A Step Towards New Worlds
He is, and will always be, a stranger to his society.
The line above describes Harry Haller, the main character in the novel Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse, and has followed, sometimes haunted, me for over 40 years. It may sound a bit strange to kick off an article on internet searching with a reference to the deep psychic angst and gloom within parts of Europe between two major wars but it sets the stage for the question. What alternatives exist if the accident of birth or the random circumstances of life plant you in a place where you don’t really fit?
In 1926, the year Hesse wrote the book, there weren’t a lot of alternatives and with a world wide depression on the horizon they weren’t about to increase and those that existed weren’t about to get better any time soon. Then, as now, the only real alternative is to seek out new societies but that was a lot tougher then than now. Although it is still true poverty and circumstance can restrict options at least now, with the advent of the internet, it takes a lot less to search a lot further and for most ordinary people virtual travel on the internet has expanded the search area from a few kilometres (or miles if you happen to live in that part of the world) to the globe. And it was through virtual travel that the first web site for this month came to my attention. It was recommended by someone I met on the internet.
It’s a relatively new site called MixLuv which offers, and I quote, ‘…the social platform that provides musicians, songwriters and engineers the ability to meet, collaborate, and manage their world of music online’. At the moment I’m haring around between the new job in Paris, (finally) starting the work on building the studio, developing the prospects of working with a couple of musicians, one in Belgium one in Paris, and laying down the initial design for a music project which means there hasn’t been a lot of time to ‘try out’ this site. So, as an alternative, I took the time to read the small print; a rare thing indeed. I checked out
- About Us
- Terms of Service
- Help (FAQ)
and came away assured. The help section especially looked pretty interesting. At the moment I’m desperately trying to finish this article before flying off to a wedding in Romania followed by a few days in Transylvania so that is as far as I got but once back I intend to have an in-depth look around the site and will report on that later.
This led me on to looking for sites of a similar nature and I found one called Cocompose. At first this site left me distinctly unimpressed because of the quality of English. There were a number of spelling mistakes, incorrect choice of words and occasionally the verb was missing from the sentence. But, as I had recently become interested in reading the small print (in fact as recently as the paragraph above) a little research revealed the site is based in Germany and given the authors were probably more interested in music than grammar it seemed fair to adopt a more forgiving attitude. Again, as above, the ticking clock prevents in-depth research but that will follow.
The travel on the cards, one real and one virtual, to come over the next few weeks should go a long way towards offering positive alternatives for this stranger to find a society where he fits.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Richard Miller is a caterpillar who has begun his chrysalis phase. Originally
from Maine, Richard has, via a series of mis-adventures and accidents, worked
as an accountant in the English Midlands, a systems programmer on the South
Coast of England (where he also pursued an illustrious career in rugby) and a
statistical programmer in Belgium. Now he has put all that aside, bought a
house, stripped it back to the brick and started to renovate it from top to bottom
while simultaneously transforming himself from a results oriented automaton
into a winged song writer. You can peak inside the chrysalis
Featured Article - By Brad Dunse
QUICK TIP: Lyrical Bleeding
We have a collection of movies in our family we’ve dubbed as personal classics. One which usually gets airtime in the fall of the year is, “On Golden Pond.”
A 1981 film starring Henry Fonda, Katheryn Hepburn, Jane Fonda, and Dabney Coleman.
There is a scene where the old curmudgeon Norman (Henry Fonda) is chatting with soon to be son-in-law, Bill (Dabney Coleman). Bill asked how he should address Mrs. Thayer (Katheryn Hepburn), Norman’s wife.
Norman said, “How about Ethyl, that’s her name you know. Ethyl Thayer. Thoundth like I’m lithping doethen’t it?”
Every time I hear that part of the movie I can’t help but think of lyric writing and the topic of this month’s tip… lyrical bleeding.
What is lyrical bleeding? I doubt you’ll find the term in any songwriting book or web resource… I just made it up. Lyrical bleeding to me is any two words misinterpreted because of their unique phonetics when joined together. In layman’s terms? You hear one thing when it is actually something else.
So what do I mean?
Unlike other art involving words, lyrics are phonetically based. Depending on tempo and phrasing, a lyric could have different meanings in a listener’s ear.
For instance if you were to hear the following lyric sung:
“A frog is sleeping just outside my window.”
How would you know I didn’t mean…
“A frog is leaping just outside my window.”
Two totally different pictures in your mind depending on whether you bled the ‘s’ sounds together.
I always get a chuckle how Glenn Fry sings a line in the Eagles hit song Peaceful Easy Feeling. He sings…
“I get this feeling I may know you,
As a lover and a friend,
But this voice keeps whispering in my other ear…”
Its phonetics are: “But this voice keeps whispering in my other rear…”
Interesting anatomy, Glen.
What if I were to write a lyric like…
“Money is a deep dish pie,
More would be so nice,
The rich seem to get richer,
They take the poor man’s slice.”
Poor man’s lice? Eew!
What about this one…
“He’s a Hall of Famer in the works,
Fans will chant his name,
Baseball is in his blood,
He’s got a big love for today’s game.”
Was that “big love” or big glove?”
That is a different kind of bleeding. We English speakers tend to not only slur some sounds together, but we will borrow a hard sounding consonant from one word for use in another, as in “big glove.” We should hear a separation between the two ‘g’ sounds, but if we say it relatively fast, we’ll just say, “biglove.”
Do these lyrical bleeds always happen with the ending letter of one word slurring into the starting letter of another?
No. Take a listen to Garth Brook’s hit The Dance.
“Our lives are better left to chance,
I could have missed the pain,
But I'd of had to miss… the dance”
But what we actually hear is…
“But Ida had to miss… the dance.”
Who is Ida? How did she get in the song?
Wrapping up here, how important are these on the big scene?
I classify these in the song stutter category. When you hear them, your ear has a little phonetic stutter. You may or may not understand what is said, you think a second to decipher it out, make a decision whether it is pertinent to the rest of the lyric, and move on.
The problem is, even though that decision takes a blink of an eye, it is a distraction to the song, and you bookmark that little beauty as a flaw every time you hear that song.
So, they aren’t lyric killers, but they interrupt the flow of the song for a listener.
Watch for these little sneaks to see if they show up in your lyrics. If you find them, just change one of the two words or rephrase the line. You’ll make your awesome song even stronger with that simple little sound check.
Until next time…
Keep writing from the heart!
A performing songwriter, Brad Dunse is member of ASCAP, NSAI, SongU, and Minnesota Association of Songwriters. His songs have been played on various independent, internet, and public radio stations across the country with The Wall touching a major country market station. Interested in song evaluations? Go to Brad's site for more information.
|"ON SITE" FEATURED ARTICLE(S)
How To Easily Get A Lot more Music Gigs - by Tom Hess
Are you unsure about what you must do to get more gigs? You could be causing problems for yourself by thinking that “venues aren’t looking for bands in this moment,” or “there’s too much competition for my band to stand a chance”. Fact is, these statements are based in excuses. Here are the actual facts when it comes to getting more gigs...
4 HUGE Mistakes Guitar Teachers Make In Their Guitar Lesson Ads
- by Tom Hess
Having problems getting brand new guitar students with the guitar lesson ads you created? Know that you are not alone.
How You Can Play Kick-Ass Pinch Harmonics On Guitar - by Tom Hess
Being able to play pinch harmonics will make your guitar playing sounds totally badass. With this single technique, you can add true passion, quickly and easily to your guitar playing. However, if done improperly, it can be a very frustrating technique to deal with.
|Classifieds & Useful Services
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LYRICIST VERSION 3: THE SONGWRITER'S BEST FRIEND
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For Classifieds: US$50 Max. 7 lines (though I
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