SUCCEEDING AS A SONGWRITER IN NASHVILLE
By: Hookstown Brown
also: NASHVILLE city info
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Should I Have My Songs Professionally Demoed?
Some people ask, after listening to some of the songs on my website, whether I do my own demos or not. Ive replied, "Sometimes yes, sometimes no".
I thought I would give yall a few quick whys and why nots.
This is a question that I wrestled with for quite awhile -- Should I pay to have my songs professionally demoed? Me especially, because I already have a project studio of my own with all the gadgets needed to produce a pretty refined piece of work.
So, for starters, why should anyone consider paying a Nashville studio or a studio in any other city for that matter, to do a demo?
Because the competition you are up against is getting his or her songs pro demoed, thats why. Youve heard it before that a great song is great even when it is done only as a bare-bones guitar/vocal. A great song will find its way, regardless of the arrangement. My favorite is this one, Sometimes it is better to do just a guitar/vocal so that a producer can hear the song au natural and later do the full arrangement! Yes, thank you so much That authoritative notion routinely oozes from the hit-cranking occipital lobes of those songwriter-website-gurus whos list of cuts you just cant quite recall You are competing with the best. The best songwriters get their songs pro demoed.
When, in college, you are told that hand-written work is not acceptable.
When applying for a job, you need to put on clean clothes and rub a little Valvoline through the scalp Clip them toenails if ya aint gonna wear no shoes Yep, the scissors can always be replaced!
PRESENTATION Demo at least one song to compete...
The fact is, if every songwriter in Nashville is putting on clean clothes and clipping their toenails, you will be ignored if you dont follow suit. And, believe me, every songwriter in Nashville keeps himself and herself looking very dapper indeed. They take courses.
Dress for success courses, courses on speaking, courses on when to listen up, courses on mingling and courses on drinking bottled water that is Alcohol is forbidden now in country music. It has been for several years. You must belong to a heath club and you must be a rated, handicapped golfer in order to be considered country.
By the way, if you want to make an impression, never turn up a bottle of Avian in mixed company! It symbolizes desperation for goodness sakes!
Anyhoo, us cow tippin, country lovin, shine shakin beer guzzlin' songmeisters aint got a chance to get a song cut. Or so they think. Heres my plan:
PLAY THE GAME
Go to clubs Make friends
SEEK OUT AND INFILTRATE The A list songwriters
I learned a little about subversion in the army. You need to dress the way they do, talk like em and act like em in addition to getting your song pro-demoed like they do. Then once youre in Take over, baby... Sneak in. Its your world thenSubject em to it
I have a plan to go out back of my house to the goat shed yes I have goats -- and gather up a pound or two of goat berries, and bring a gift of candy!
Mmmm! Chocolate covered tidbits for my new bunch of snotty-nosed, non-country, fluff-writin competitor friends! Just wash em down with a bottle of Avian Dont turn that bottle up, though! Itll show youre desperate!
HeeHeee! If you could see the grin I'm wearin'!
So yeah, in order to compete with those who are getting cuts, your song needs to sound radio-ready. You really should try to get at least one demo done professionally. Have your favorite song done, though. Not the one that you think is currently cuttable, your favorite. Why? Because if it doesnt get cut you will have to listen to it for a long time, thats why!
By the way, for you lyrics-only folks, there are plenty of places that will fit music to your lyrics and then record your demo, too. Always stick with a reputable demo studio, though. Also, ask for a demo cd of their work. And dont be concerned that you dont speak the language that studio engineers speak. They know that already!
And thats enough from me
own Brown com/HookstownBrow
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