IT'S THE MUSIC, IT'S THE MUSIC...
First off, congratulations to Bon Iver for being the first Indie to bust through the barriers faced by Independent artists earning the Grammy for "Best New Artist" of 2011. Kind of a quiet guy it seems but his music stirs the soul.
And I got a kick out of many of the major label artists saying on TV during the awards how -- it's the music, it's the music, it's the music.
Yes of course "it's the music", but many Indie performers don't have the luxury to bring in "specialists" picked by their "handlers" to write compelling songs as I venture many known artists do who eventually get to a point when they can basically write whatever they feel like writing because their fans have "bought into" their "branding."
But Indies, for the most part, must compose their own music deep into the shadows of the hype, as well as handle a hundred and one other details ranging from copyright administration to promotions.
I heard a TV hostess say on a show about music just last week how an artist in the independent world should just focus on one thing and do it well. That works when you have "people" I suppose. Can't say I've met any Indie who has them.
When all is said and done, the "song's the thing" at the top of the list of "to do's" I suppose. Otherwise, why would you bother to begin what is sure to be a long journey to become a successful recording artist/performer?
With the digital music revolution being described as something resembling the "wild, wild west" to "audio anarchy," let's just say I have heard some really good Indie songs these days, and some that, well, are not really good Indie songs these days.
So for those who are to be successful, don't look to set songwriting speed records on your guitar or Avid Key Studio right out of the gate. Take a deep breath and think.
Think about how you are going to stir someone with memorable words and music matched seemlessly, sung with the proper prosody, and as important as anything, conveying meaning, particularly if the song is a serious one, or providing pleasing entertainment to give us a reason to dance and smile during these lingering difficult times.
Anyone can write A song. Only a few can write THE song!
March 3, 2012