Welcome to Just Plain Notes
Just Plain Notes: Volume 2.015, March 31st, 2014
Written by Brian Austin Whitney
Visit the Website: www.jpfolks.com
Mail CD's @ 5327 Kit Drive, Indianapolis, IN 46237
Copyright 2014 Just Plain Folks Productions.
Just Plain Folks Member Population: 51,175 Just Plain Folks on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JustPlainFolks
Brian on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Brian.Austin.Whitney
Brian on Skype: Brian Austin Whitney
Brian on Twitter: @TheBAWhitney
Just Plain Folks Org on Twitter: @JPFolksOrg
Would you like to join the JPF Networking Message Boards?

It's quick and easy. Just click the link and choose a password and user name and you'll be posting in no time! We'd love to hear from and about you. You can get peer feedback on your music or lyrics, find people to co-write with, get answers to just about any music related question and promote yourself and your gigs on the appropriate boards. It's a very friendly place where over 20,000 of your peers hang out!

To register: (It's a separate registration from JPF membership):
Just Plain Quotes:

"Experience is one thing you can't get for nothing." -Oscar Wilde

"But far more numerous was the herd of such,
Who think too little and who talk too much." -John Dryden

"There is only one success - to be able to spend your life in your own way."
-Christopher Morley

"Success stories and informational articles may inform, inspire and educate you, but the stark truth is that only your own hard work, talent and persistence will take you where you want to go." -Brian Austin Whitney

My Take:

I worked on several articles on 4 topics for the newsletter this month, but it occurred to me that I could do better perhaps by making one single point. Here goes:

Success stories and informational articles may inform, inspire and educate you, but the stark truth is that only your own hard work, talent and persistence will take you where you want to go.

I write most of these "My Takes" not only in an attempt to help nudge you in a positive direction, offer a helping hand now and then or simply lift your morale a bit. I also write them for myself. Like many of you reading this, I sort of need this gentle kick in the butt this month. I turned 50 years old last Wednesday and like some of you I have a wide variety of projects that I am over prepared for and under involved with finishing.

So here's hoping those of us who need to collectively get ourselves in gear succeed in doing so... and SOON!

And finally, I have included below some easy ways you can get yourself and your friends more involved in JPF. I have been working to help people fulfill their dreams for 29 years since I started Just Plain Folks in my room at DePauw University. It would be a fantastic birthday present to me if you could take a few minutes, read the list and help us all out in mere minutes of effort on your part.

I thank you in advance!

Learn, Succeed and Thrive. We're all in this together!
Table of Contents:

01. Ways to get involved and help out Brian, Just Plain Folks and Yourself!
02. Billy Block of Western Beat needs your help! LA Benefit Concert!
03. 2014 Just Plain Folks Video Spotlight & Awards Entry Information
04. 2014 Just Plain Folks Music Awards Entry Information
05. Singing/Acting Film & Documentary Opportunity for JPF Members!
2014 Just Plain Folks Community Partner Sponsors!

TAXI: The world's leading independent A&R company, has been successfully helping Songwriters, Artists and Composers get their music heard and signed by top Publishers, Major & Indie Labels, and Film & TV music supervisors since 1992. TAXI, is your best bet! See them at www.TAXI.com.

CDBaby: The best place to sell your CD's or music files on line. They also have the best on-line hosting service called Hostbaby. Nobody else even comes close. See them at www.CDBaby.com and www.Hostbaby.com.

SongU: Want to learn the craft of songwriting with the online atmosphere of a university community? Check SongU out, they're great people who are great at what they do! Sign up for a free trial today! www.songu.com

Muses Muse: This is the brainchild of our longtime friend Jodi Krangle, a sort of sister site to JPF focused on Songwriters. It is a great community and like JPF it is free! www.musesmuse.com

Future Of Music Coalition: The FOMC is our political action partner in all things involving legislative and technological issues important to our community. They are free to join and all the work they do gives you a voice, through us and them to those in power in the USA. Find them at www.futureofmusic.org

If your company would like to become a Just Plain Folks Community Partner Sponsor please contact Brian directly at jpfolkspro@aol.com or send me a note on Facebook!
Brian's 50th Birthday Wish List: Please get involved, we need YOUR help!

Some simple ways you and your friends can get more involved in Just Plain Folks from anywhere in the world!

1. Get a friend to join us! Here's a direct link to our newsletter registration page. They can fill out as little as just their email address to officially become a JPF member! Here's the link: http://jpfolks.com/JPNotes/subscribe.html?name=Join

2. Send us your music on CD or DVD for this year's music awards. (Complete directions are below this article). Your friends are also invited, all they need to do is follow the same instructions. All music released or created in 2010 or later. We recognize ALL GENRES of music, 100 different ones from 168 countries last time!

3. Join us on Social Media:
-To become a Facebook Friend: https://www.facebook.com/JustPlainFolks
-To join Just Plain Folks on Facebook Group:
---Note: You can post anything music related here!
-To follow Brian Austin Whitney on Twitter: @TheBAWhitney
-To follow Just Plain Folks on Twitter: @JPFolksOrg

4. Start a local Chapter in your hometown area! All you need is 10 interested musicians, songwriters or music industry folks at any level to get started. It is free! If you'd like to help coordinate a new or existing chapter, email justplainfolks@aol.com and place your name, city, state or city, country (for non-USA) in the subject field and your contact info and a little about yourself, your goal and the music scene in your town as far as you know it. Note: We also work with existing local organizations.

5. Join and post on our networking message board! It's quick and easy. Just click the link and choose a password and user name and you'll be posting in no time! We'd love to hear from and about you. You can get peer feedback on your music or lyrics, find people to co-write with, get answers to just about any music related question and promote yourself and your gigs on the appropriate boards. It's a very friendly place where over 20,000 of your peers hang out!

To register: (It's a separate registration from JPF membership):

And finally, how about a JPF Roadtrip Tour to your town?

6. One of my goals is to get out and see more of you in person. In the past 29 years I have met over 25,000 of you in person in 48 US States and 27 Countries around the world and had you perform live at one of our networking showcases. Feel free to send me a note if you'd like us to come to your town on tour and perhaps set up an artist Showcase or a member networking event and can help us out finding a venue or getting the word out. Email me directly at jpfolkspro@aol.com and place "Roadtrips" and your name and city/state/country in the subject so I can find you. We're planning a 5 week tour in September to Europe, so we're especially interest in hearing from people over the pond!
Billy Block of Western Beat needs your help! LA Benefit Concert!

Late breaking news:

Dear Friends: Billy Block is a much-loved member of our musical family. Please support. Billy is in the fight of his life with Cancer and has long been a passionate supporter booking thousands of artists just like many of you to perform in Nashville at his Western Beat shows:

Just Plain Folks Video Spotlight and now accepting Video Submissions from YOU!

We're now accepting video submissions for the 2014 Just Plain Folks Music Awards. Before we could even announce it today we got this email with the following video. Here's what it said in fairly typical promotional release language:
We're happy to say we just released our new album "Pleasure Island" by The Mast!!

Here's the latest video from the album if you didn't catch it yet. It features a 22-month old baby DJ who tricks his baby cam, escapes from his crib, and throws a party for his pals.

Video: So Right http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tsAoQfvV0Fo
But once I watched the video, I realized it was far from typical. The song is outstanding (good enough to score a nomination in most years on its own), and the video is charming and makes me love this band even more. Check it out above, you'll like it!

So I decided it would work perfectly as a way to launch our 2014 JPF Video Awards entry process. First, you need a good blurb about the video which tells the story behind it (or some other compelling introduction). See their example below:
The Making of "So Right" by The Mast:

We made the video ourselves. I directed and edited it and Matt filmed it. The 22-month old DJ is our nephew. He always likes to play with our gear, with the keyboard and the iPad. One day I was watching him playing around with it all and thought it would be great to make a video. After I had storyboarded it, I showed a friend and thought, am I nuts to think a 22 month old can, or at least look like he can, escape from his crib, get dressed, call his friends, and throw a party? We realized the only way it would work was if we could turn the filming of each shot into a game so he was entertained. Also we had to keep each shooting session very short. We filmed for probably about 7 minutes a day, literally in 1-3 minute intervals over the course of 5 days, except for the day with all the kids. That was a full-blown party and we filmed for about an hour. It was a lot of fun for the kids and the parents. I'd do something like that again ;-)

It did by the way premiere in Interview Magazine, and was posted in USA Today and Huffington Post, but in very hard to find places! ;-) Enjoy and thank again, Haleh & Matt from The Mast
Next, include all your contact information, name, address, phone, website, preferred email, Facebook and other social media you're on and anything else you want us to know along with the video name and direct link, preferably on YouTube .

IMPORTANT: In the subject line of the email, please place

"2014 Video Submission (Band/Artist Name and Song Name)"

Example: (in the subject field of the email entry)

"2014 Video Submission" "The Mast: So Right"

(if you don't do this, it will get lost never to be found or included!!!!)

Email this entry to: justplainfolks@aol.com

We'll send out updates on final deadlines for both music and videos (and lyrics which we'll cover in the future)

We will also feature some of our initial favorites on our website and other social media. Yup... free promotion!
2014 Just Plain Folks Music Awards

We are still on hold concerning digital entries. While we wait, you can enter your music right now for free by following the instructions below.

We are now officially accepting entries via CD directly to JPF. Send us any CD's released AFTER 2009. (i.e, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014). We expect to continue accepting entries through much of 2014 directly and will give you plenty of warning before we cut off entries. Much of it depends on our Digital Entry process. If you already have music ready to go, please go ahead and send us a CD copy. We accept ALL genres of music and last time around we had 100 different genres of music from 168 different countries submitted for the awards. The bar is set pretty high, but if you have what it takes, let's hear what you have!

Inside your package, please include ALL contact info including full name and position (singer, artist, drummer, manager, publisher, attorney, whatever), your full mailing address, your phone number and cell number, and if your CD case does not include a listing of all song titles and songwriters, including whether or not the song is a cover or public domain, you MUST include a listing of this information for your music to be considered in the awards process. In addition, please include your contact info on the physical CD's itself (meaning unwrap it and write it with a sharpie or in some other clearly readable way) because CD's are quickly separated from their cases in our screening process and if your CD has no contact info, band name, album name and song listing, we may not know who you are and would have no way to find you.
Once you've met those requirements, you may also include band bios or whatever else you want. (Press kits, T-shirts (3X is the size), Hats etc. as we collect them and if they fit, I wear them while attending events, showcases, tours, conferences etc. If we get enough cool shirts and hats this year, we may even have a category for best Promotional Item).

Send the package to Just Plain Folks, 5327 Kit Dr., Indianapolis, IN 46237.

We do NOT return CD's and we cannot offer direct feedback or critiques simply because we receive thousands of CD's a year and during the awards the numbers are much higher. But we do listen to all the CD's we receive in the order we receive them.
JPF Founder Brian Austin Whitney is working on a music/film/documentary project:

We have had some truly AMAZING people express interest in this project. We still need to fill some roles however as the project is still in development and is ever changing. If you have previously submitted, don't worry if we haven't contacted you yet. Several of you will likely make it into the final project, but we're still developing the characters and some plot changes, so please be patient! This film screenplay won't be finalized until the end of this year (2014)!

Remember, we need males and females of all ages, shapes and types. You must be able to sing and/or play an instrument! Please include links to headshots we can download or copy and links to your music and any video clips as well as your resumes etc. See below!
New Girl Group forming for indie film/TV series and live performances:

UPDATE: We have had some wonderful and talented people express interest in this project. Keep in mind that even if you don't make the final main cast, there will be walk on/sing on roles as well as segments/interviews in the documentary project that will be shot along side the film. We are using influences and inspirations from those of you we've met over the years but also from some of you who have stepped up to be involved. The cast numbers have fluctuated up and down (mostly up) and some plot lines abandoned and others added. The main goal for me is to have a lot of fun making a labor of love and a big love letter to everyone who has ever touched JPF over the years. Everyone who has so far auditioned via the submission process is still in the running to being involved. I am having to work on this in free moments where I can be in the mood to work. Easier said than done sometimes!

Needed: Female Vocalists of all styles: We need POWERFUL vocalists in all genres of music who can demonstrate the ability to harmonize with others across multiple genres of music. Preferred Age: 20-50. Acting experience is important, acting talent required because you will be on film playing a musician. You might even be cast in a genre that isn't your normal thing, so be willing to be flexible. Size and looks less important but vocal ability is a must and charisma is as well. You must have live performance experience, this is not a learn as you go project. There's just too much talent out there.

UPDATE: There will be two types of original music included in this film. One will be an array of genres performed in character by each leading role. The second will be some group songs which will have the vibe of Depeche Mode musically and mood wise (Think "Never Let Me Down Again") and En Vogue's "Free Your Mind." One of the male roles will be singing with the lead females and the other two major male roles will do their own thing in as yet undetermined genres. We'll also have a spoken word artist with a significant role.

Please email the following:

Contact Info, Links to: (no files please) Electronic Press Kit (if available), Performance Resume (including age and general music performance & acting experience), YouTube clip of at least one live solo/featured and group harmony performance, Links to 3 music tracks featuring your voice as well as at least one example of you harmonizing with others. We also need to see what you look like in at least 2 different looks as well as full body shots in everyday street clothes and make up so we can see how tall and heavy/thin you are. We need diverse body types and looks, so please show us who you really are so we can cast appropriately from among those who qualify vocally. Please DO NOT spend ANY money putting this together. This is simply a project in development. If you are missing any of the above, tell us about your interest and experience and we'll let you know what else we need if we're interested.

Place: Singing Project (along with your name) in the subject line and email it to jpfolkspro@aol.com.

This is NOT a reality show format. This is an album, film/TV and online project.

Note: We are now also looking for 2 male vocalists/actors and cast additional cast members to add to this project. One must be able to perform on an instrument, act and sing, the other must be able to perform on an instrument and act and can be older in the 35-70 age range.
Copyright 2014 Just Plain Folks

Brian Austin Whitney
Just Plain Folks
Skype: Brian Austin Whitney
Facebook: www.facebook.com/justplainfolks

"Don't sit around and wait for success to come to you... it doesn't know the way." -Brian Austin Whitney

"It's easier to be the bigger man when you actually are..."

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