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#1078226 - 04/02/15 02:40 PM Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ?  
Joined: Dec 2006
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niteshift Online content
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niteshift  Online Content
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Hey All,

Was having a think about the various threads going on at the moment, and the "exclusion" or so called feeling of exclusion that some artists can feel from time to time,.... as well as Marc's comments on "not to germ", and how basically, people use those around them first, as they are trusted and have an ongoing relationship and an "ease of use".

That's because they are safe, and a good bet, and why bother with someone you don't know who could stuff things up ..... right ?

So, you're new to a new town/city, but you don't know anyone, but are professional in what you do, are a member of your requisite pro association and want to meet other like minded people. Where do you go ?

I stumbled across this place .... http://www.sohohousewh.com/ ,originally started in London, but it now has many clubs across the entertainment/arts community.

Yes, it's exclusive, and yes it is unique, in that it caters for those in the traditional arts field, and apparently has a motto of "we don't admit assholes". In other words they do not admit germers, neither do they admit "famous" people, or those that think they can buy their way into the arts.

It's not cheap, about $2k per year, but the question is .....

In the great scheme of things, would you find such a club beneficial if it was used in the correct manner ?

All, and any comments welcome.

cheers, niteshift

PS - My own personal view is that of Oscar Wilde - "Why would I want to join a club that allows me as a member ? "

#1078252 - 04/02/15 08:16 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: niteshift]  
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Interesting concept, but probably not useful to most people. I remember when I would go to industry wide events and conferences in the field I worked in (aluminum manufacturing, not music), that after it was over, I just wanted to go home and stay away from anyone in my field. The last thing I wanted to do was go hang out with a bunch of aluminum executives.

I can imagine the club being populated with a bunch of wannabes all waiting for Mr. Big to drop by.

I also think that in the music scene, certain places fulfill that role just by being a cool place to be for musicians in a given town. There are a couple of places in St. Pete where I know I can go if I want to bump into some of the best musicians around and I am sure those places exist in most towns.....and in somewhere like Nashville, some of the musicians who hang out there will be famous.


I try to critique as if you mean business.....



#1078449 - 04/04/15 03:26 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Colin Ward]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Marc Barnette  Offline
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Wow. Interesting concept. I think the price might be a bit prohibitive for most average writer/artists but the concept has the right idea. SOCAN, (the Canadian songwriter's orginization) has somewhat the same concept in Nashville. They have a house that Canadian artists and writers can use to stay for free.

Also there is "Scarrit Bennet" house, which is a former monestary in Nashville, on a campus/church environment, that rents rooms starting about $25/$35 per night. Since most people who stay there are artist/writers, they end up with the same comradere aspect.

The thing about "GHERMING" is that it exposes people as being ignorant of etticate and social rules. If you just walked into any business, factory, retail, manufacturing, etc. and just start working there, setting up shop for your own products, etc. you would not get away with it for long. The people who established those businesses, put out the capital outlay, sweated for years and sometimes decades, would not be too keen on letting someone just "set up shop" in a place they developed.

Also there is the "ability factor." Over the years here I have been hit with literally hundreds of unsolicited CD's, tapes, etc. Doing workshops, shows, across the country and Canada, and in my tours and Nashville stuff, people come out of the woodwork to try and give out their product. And in EVERY EXAMPLE, not just a few BUT EVERY TIME, they are NEVER worth even listening to.

They might have some talent but poor recordings. they might have great recordings but poorly written songs. And most are just very very mediocre. But I have yet to find one that really stands up to what is out there by the professionals. It is very difficult for part timers to participate at he level of people who do this every single day all the time.

Good article.

#1078459 - 04/04/15 05:04 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Charlie2015 Offline
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I find it odd that in a business as cut throat and often dishnoest and back stabbing as the music business, that the term gherming would even come into it.

people get stepped on every day in every business, you gotta be tough and assertive.

The main problem I see with germing is that you stink to begin with. if you are awesome, you will come off as charming, if you suck, or just average, you will be considered a pest

just like good looking men almost never get accused of sexual harrasment, only ugly creepy guys!

#1078471 - 04/04/15 07:15 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Charlie2015]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Marc Barnette  Offline
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Look at it like this. Think back about how long you have worked to do whatever it is you do. The years you went through school,college,working one,two three really crappy jobs, all trying to juggle to get to what you either studied for or what you wanted to do. You have all kinds of roadblocks, businesses that close, people that move past you, accidents that derail your progress.

You get married or involved, deal with relationships that don't work out some that do. You borrow money to further you dreams, college loans, business loans, borrow from relatives, deal with THAT guilt as you struggle to pay it off. Sometimes have to leave to start all over again in a different area. Deal with total jerks on the way up and when you get there.

You finally achieve whatever level you get to now, sometimes somewhat comfortable but usually always feeling like you can do or need more. money never seems to go quite as far as you would like it to. But you deal with it.

Then someone you don't know, walks up to you and says, "You know, I have never done what you have done. I really don't know anything about it but am willing to learn about it after someone gives me the job you are doing.

I don't even know if I will be as qualified as you are. And I don't want to do that "working up" thing. I just want to be where you are, make the money you make, be able to use your contacts, your knowledge, and education, and use those for my own uses because I really don't like what I do now and want to be where you are. Oh and yes, I really don't want to have to leave my house, disrupt my life and family, so I could just stay here and do it. I really don't want to give up our family vacations. You don't mind helping me do that do you?"

Because that, is exactly what it is.


#1078475 - 04/04/15 07:27 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Charlie2015 Offline
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yeah, I get that, it's the same thing with friendships.

Ooh you got a job at Microsoft, get me one too!

Or, you won alot of money at the track, let me have some of it. while they took no risk at all, and would probably laugh had you lost.

I know, it must be hard being a celebrity because everybody wants something from you. Everybody thinks you are walking around looking for people to help.

I get that part of it. But, i also think it has to do with HOW u do it.

Like if I met somebody big in the music biz, I wouldn't say, can you get me signed, but I might ask "Im an aspiring songwriter, what suggestions do you have, I havent had much luck yet"

And let them tell you.

But it still hels to be good...or look good. Imagine some woman who looked like a centerfold walks up to you, and says "Ooh, i write songs, can you help me out"

You'd say "ahh humina humina ahh, Mice to Neet You, My Marc is Name.... LOLLLLLL

Chances are shes getting a listen.

#1078482 - 04/04/15 08:35 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Charlie2015]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Marc Barnette  Offline
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You are getting closer. Actually the way to get people to ask about YOU, you first ask about THEM. Everyone is trying to get information from someone else. And everyone needs to feel someone is interested in THEM, not just in YOU.

In every instance I have ever seen, those publishers, higher level writers, artists,etc, are happy to talk about themselves. Then they have been around a while so they know when to start asking about the other person.

And if you listen to other people's stories, you usually can read between the lines to find out things that apply to yours.

But the best way things happen are the referrals, when other people that they know, talks about someone. If someone hears you play out, and you do something that impresses them, they start talking about it. This leads to emails, conversations, leading to web sites, posted music, etc.

A lot of people have approached me over the years after first hearing about me through a mutual friend. Every hit writer I have ever written with, (about fifty with number one or top ten songs) have either played with me on a writer's night, been on a benefit with me, seen one of my shows or had a friend tell them about me.

When you are competent on what you do, word gets around. Likewise, if you are not very good, if you are a superficials, or a gherm, overanxious, that gets around too.


#1078499 - 04/04/15 11:20 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Marc Barnette]  
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Ray E. Strode Online content
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Well Yes I would join, But,
I ain't movin' to Hollywood to be in the Movies or Nashville to write songs! They're just gonna have to come looking for me!

Maybe if I mentioned the name of my famous ancestor, who shall remain nameless they would let me in, aw no they won't. Write a Hit!

Ray E. Strode
#1078926 - 04/08/15 04:06 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Ray E. Strode]  
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Dave Rice Online content
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Dave Rice  Online Content
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Hi Shifty:

Interesting article but hey, you could buy half a "Strat" for that kind of money. Being a member of anything is no guarantee of success. Before I would part with that much hard earned cash, I'd spend it on a demo or two.

Thanks for sharing,


#1079083 - 04/09/15 02:53 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Dave Rice]  
Joined: Dec 2006
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niteshift Online content
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niteshift  Online Content
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Hey All,

ALL good points.

People are members of all different clubs, and they join them ( or should do ) because there is a common interest.

As an example, my son is a very good football player ( soccer for the uninitiated ) and when we were on an extended holiday, we were travelling through Singapore, and his coach wanted him to keep up his training, so I made contact with the Singapore junior team to ask if he could join one of their training sessions to keep himself fit.... i.e. I explained the situation.

They could not have been kinder, and asked where we were staying, and welcomed him. As it happened, we were just way too busy, but I later found out that their home ground is the Singapore Cricket Club.

Now,.... just TRY to get membership there on a five year waiting list, and an application fee exceeding $50k, plus ongoings. We could have been sitting there in a very exclusive club, watching the training sessions, and "hob knobbing", but that was not was what it was about.

It was ABOUT a semi-pro footballer being treated with respect for what he has done so far, and the graciousness of those involved, and all because he is already good at what he does. No gherming, just mutual respect.

So, I view this as something similar. It's for "traditional" artists, i.e. writers, cameramen, directors, financiers... those that actually do the real work.

As for the cost ? Well, everything is relative. And in relation to the money being spent, even just for the small guy, it doesn't seem excessive.

Would I become a member ? Perhaps. But that would only happen at the invitation of two other current members who would clearly state "he's not an [naughty word removed], and money is not his prime adjective".

Thoughts ?

cheers, niteshift

#1079211 - 04/10/15 02:07 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: niteshift]  
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Barry David Butler Online content
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Barry David Butler  Online Content
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I find that People in General Like to talk about themselves. IF you want to get somebody to like YOU just ask them HOW ARE YOU DOING? and just let them go. THEY usually need to unload and IF you are a GOOD Listener and ask good question you have a new friend. IF that new friend is ever in a position to HELP you they probably will. Everybody needs somebody to listen...Hey another title.

#1079213 - 04/10/15 02:17 PM Re: Soho House - West Hollywood - Would you Join ? [Re: Barry David Butler]  
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Marc Barnette Offline
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Marc Barnette  Offline
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That is actually the best way to get in with hit songwriters. People constantly come to Nashville wanting someone to hear THEM. They try to bug publishers, ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, etc. to try and get in the front doors, which have always been closed.

But generally they come in contact with these same people in social situations. If they just spend a little time ASKING about other people instead of just going through the "LISTEN TO ME, LISTEN TO ME,HEAR ME, HEAR ME!!!" They will generally learn a lot more and find themselves being asked the questions they wanted in the first place.


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