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#398483 - 01/18/06 10:37 PM Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 2,524
Jerry Jakala Offline
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Jerry Jakala  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 2,524
Pinellas Park.FL USA
What are you doing to better yourselves as musicians/entertainers?
Taking classes lessons or?

Jerry

------------------
Jerry Jakala


http://www.jerryjakala.com
http://cdbaby.com/cd/jakalajerry2

The difference between genius and stupidity is that there is a limit on genius.-Albert Einstein
#398484 - 01/19/06 11:57 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 747
Andy K Online content
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Andy K  Online Content
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Joined: Apr 2003
Posts: 747
Clearwater, FL, USA
Besides practicing (playing, recording, writing, etc.), I'm doing a lot of reading, both books and on the net, of songwriting and recording techniques. I also attended five conferences, one week of seminars, and a songwriter's retreat last year. Regularly attend our local NSAI chapter meetings. Plus still submitting and getting critiques from TAXI. (And people wonder why I don't have time to attend open mics!)

Note that most of this has little to do with performing. My goal is not to be an artist, but a songwriter. It's the song that counts!

------------------
Stone Marmot
retro pop-rock original music
www.stonemarmot.com
www.soundclick.com/stonemarmot.htm
www.myspace.com/stonemarmot


https://www.stonemarmot.com
Stone Marmot
Nouveau retro pop-rock music
Whatever happened to the Golden Rule is the subject of our latest song,
“The Golden Rule.” Listen at: https://soundcloud.com/stone-marmot/the-golden-rule
and check out its music video: https://youtu.be/0FKlwhjdENc
#398485 - 01/19/06 12:25 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 2,499
Al Alvarez Offline
Al Alvarez  Offline


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Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 2,499
Tampa Florida
In regards to being a better musician and entertainer I'd have to say I've started to play out more.Working with Jim Mason and performing at our showcases. So more stage experience this year than ever before. I'm realizing more personal fulfillment in my efforts promoting also. Thats where I see myself.
Al
www.aandrproductions.com

#398486 - 01/19/06 01:47 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 912
Jak Kelly Offline
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Jak Kelly  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 912
St Petersburg , FL. USA
I've been trying to re-try my old diciplines of writing every day, wether anything is a "keeper" or not.
Im also trying to get out and play again ( so much for retirement) LOL
I have to thank my family at JPF for being there and kicking my a- - to do it again!
It sure feels good to be "ME" again!!!
bless y'all

------------------
jak kelly
http://www.jakkelly.com
swampwood1@juno.com
http://www.cafepress.com/jakkelly
http://www.soundclick.com/jakkelly

[This message has been edited by jakkelly (edited 01-19-2006).]

#398487 - 01/19/06 02:52 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 164
Direct Current Offline
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Direct Current  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2003
Posts: 164
Clearwater,FL USA
I hound people like Andy with endless questions about writing and recording. I just recently joined NSAI to improve my lyric writing. Read,and as Jak said try to get into a writing mode. I need to play less and think more. I'll be attending a NSAI symposium in March which should be a eye opener. In addition to all that I learn about every song that I hear and like to better understand why I like them.
Dan

#398488 - 01/19/06 07:25 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 298
Mike Worrall Offline
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Mike Worrall  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 298
Tampa, FL
Interesting question, Jerry. Like Andy, I've read voluminously, particularly regarding digital recording techniques. I tend to focus on specific areas for a length of time. If I'm doing a lot of recording, I'm likely not writing much, or working on any particular instrument...

2004 was all about learning to play mandolin. I don't think I wrote a single song that year, but I sure drove my wife crazy playing scales hour after hour after hour. It was great to be able to pick up a new instrument, and begin to build some chops on it.

2005 was a great songwriting year for me. Inspired, for the most part, by the relationships I developed through JPF and playing some of the local open mics. I hooked up with several writer/performers for song-swapping sessions at one home or another. Those mini song circles, in a non-performance atmosphere, proved really valuable in terms of the craft of writing and in playing accompaniment. Additionally, being able to participate in some of Jules' writers rounds was really valuale to me.

By the end of last year, I was accompanying other writers in performance situations, and I look do more of that in 2006. It's a great opportunity to add new styles and licks on multiple instruments.

Later,

Mike Worrall

#398489 - 01/20/06 05:25 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 2,524
Jerry Jakala Offline
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Jerry Jakala  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 2,524
Pinellas Park.FL USA
Glad to see some responses & that you are not only working hard but working smart.
Working with Dan & Andy & various members of Horse Feather's my skills have greatly increased.I also continue to take guitar lessons over the net and write and perform when I can.
I am assuming that the rest of you are doing something similar.
Any one else want to chime in here?
From the way the showcases are going I know a lot more of you are honing your crafts in one way or another.
Jerry


------------------
Jerry Jakala


http://www.jerryjakala.com
http://cdbaby.com/cd/jakalajerry2

The difference between genius and stupidity is that there is a limit on genius.-Albert Einstein
#398490 - 01/20/06 08:22 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 863
Barkin' Barney Offline
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Barkin' Barney  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 863
Clearwater, Florida
well, i joined bnav, and am playing out alot. also bought an up-right bass last june and have been working with that. also just put together a rock-a-billy band named "the gonners". so that's coming along . and bought a pocket recorder(zoom ps-04) that i write on the spot with. doing my acoustic open mic tours.(check the website) and still teaching myself to travis pick. with a study at home cd and book.(home spun music) hopefully i'll get out more this yr. on the acoustic. i'm recording a cd(with the wife of wmnf florida folk show host pete gallagher producing) and selling it on cd baby in march.going to the bluegrass parlor open mics with the up-right(on thurs) is another thing on my list.looking for a publisher to pitch my songs too.(broken arrow records in nashville is interested) so much too do.. good thread jerry! barn.
http://www.bettysnotavitamin.com

------------------
www.barkinbarney.com

[This message has been edited by barkin barney (edited 01-21-2006).]

[This message has been edited by barkin barney (edited 01-21-2006).]

#398491 - 01/21/06 04:09 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 163
JoDell Offline
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JoDell  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 163
Tarpon Springs
Well,
I am trying to write more songs with different chord structures. Attending song writing classes, pitching songs and having them critqued, going to writing seminars, guitar lessons, vocal coaching, recording songs I wrote and co-wrote, and raising my three beautiful childen. Keepin my husband happy. ect..............Great question


JoDell
jodellsmusic.com
Believe in yourself and your dreams will come true!
#398492 - 01/21/06 11:16 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 216
snail1 Offline
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snail1  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 216
St Petersburg, Fl
I am like Andy in that I am more interested in writing songs than performing, but performing has been one of the main things that I have been doing to better myself and my songwriting. The song only evolves to a certain point (for me) when it is hermetically sealed in my mind and my music room (and writing for me, lyrics especially, can be a painstakingly slooooow process). Exposing these musical mushrooms to the light of stage and the interaction of other players and ears fleshes out certain thing (phrasings, tempo, structure) that solitude doesn't. Being inherently lazy about performing (My CD was named "Appearing Slightly" for a reason) JPF has helped kick me in the ass about getting songs ready for performance. I have also resumed accompanying myself on harmonica after many years (a development that hasn't thrilled my wife or our cats) and am working on learning and relearning covers and accompanying others when possible to broaden my musical vocabulary.

#398493 - 01/22/06 02:41 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 53
Mincer Offline
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Mincer  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2003
Posts: 53
Teaching guitar for many hours every day, and listening to very diverse music certainly helps. Also, getting in lots of playing time with musicians from all genres- as well as lots of live improvisations (its fun when you have no idea what is going to happen!) certainly keeps me getting better.

------------------
http://www.hazardfactor.com

#398494 - 01/22/06 04:01 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 775
Steve Dockendorf Offline
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Steve Dockendorf  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2005
Posts: 775
Clearwater, FL
I am taking a course in mastering in order to make my productions sound more like they should be on the radio (or elevators or whatever). I also have made myself available to others as an accompianist, got a fretless bass, learned how to convert wav to MP3 and email them, looking even further to expand the range of styles I write in (in Dec I wrote my first polka). Also have started to check the specialized subject boards on JPF - reading what mentors and general members have to say about recording equipment, procedures, etc. Should've started that one a long time ago! Oh, and listening to my wife more. [Linked Image]

------------------
Steve Dockendorf
"Quality music for quality people"
dockendorf2000@yahoo.com
www.soundclick.com/stevedockendorf


Steve Dockendorf
Dockendorf Audio Recorders
"Quality music for quality people"
dockendorf2000@yahoo.com
http://www.stevedockendorf.com
http://www.myspace.com/stephendockendorf
http://stevedockendorf.wordpress.com
#398495 - 01/22/06 01:43 PM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 213
Folkie Offline
Serious Contributor
Folkie  Offline
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Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 213
Venice, Florida
Well this is a very interesting question. I have bought an 5 string open back banjo and I've been teaching myself how to play. I am also trying to read more, but I'm not a good reader. I am trying my hand at being handy around the house like hanging blinds and stuff, the house is still standing so far so good
I'm writing more after a long dry spell thoough it gets hard with Jacob around. And this year I WILL pull this band together and PERFORM!
James



------------------
James
www.JRHawkins.com

#398496 - 02/08/06 03:56 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 37
LaneyBird Offline
Casual Observer
LaneyBird  Offline
Casual Observer

Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 37
Palm Harbor Fl
I like this post. And I can relate to Mincer...teaching helps. Sometimes while I'm coaching someone or even working on technique, I might come across a new realization. It's pretty amazing.

My songwriting skills are also evolving as I have outgrown the pop field and now want to write more difficult compositions. Right now I'm just aborbing everything I can.

------------------
"I doubt everything, even my own doubts"

#398497 - 02/09/06 01:13 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 306
CanisLupus Offline
Serious Contributor
CanisLupus  Offline
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Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 306
New Port Richey, FL USA
Great question Jerry. Well, I bought a brand new Mac-Daddy PC (Pentium Dual Core proc. w/2Gb DDR-2 Ram, etc.) comletely dedicated to my studio. Next I bought the Focusrite Saffire (Andy's recommendation) which completely changed my studio and made my recording rack obsolete! All that recording gear is now in my live rack I play gigs with. I am now 100% totally a digital PC studio.

I have 7 songs produced, 2 more roughly laid down with rhythm and scratch vocals, and 3 or so more written for my 3rd CD. I will begin to sell them on CD baby soon hopefully.

I am playing some more solo gigs now to keep my chops us and PLUS..I just love playing gigs!!! I really do get off on playing live. I also make my priority the JPF meetings and being a part of Horse feathers to back other artists/friends if requested.

Unfortunately, I really have neither the time nor the money to join many societies and go to seminars.

I attempt to jump the hurdles my life has in front of me as well as bask in the sunlight of the good times and from time to time...these experiences precipitate songs.

I play BOTH my guitar and my piano 365 days a year...even if just to jam a few songs just for the Halibut!

Cheers!

------------------
Alex Wolfe Parnes/Canis Lupus Productions
www.canislupusmusic.com

#398498 - 02/09/06 10:10 AM Re: Bettering yourself!  
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 306
CanisLupus Offline
Serious Contributor
CanisLupus  Offline
Serious Contributor

Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 306
New Port Richey, FL USA
OH, I forgot to include this.

As far as pitching my songs, I tried that before many time only via mail though as both artist and songwriter. I have no problem with the rejection, I realize the statistical probability of a single success especially doing it that way, but in the process I noticed I am not really a music "Business" person and that exersize became tedious and tiresome real fast.

I hate to say it and it sounds trite, but I only really "feel" the art side of the business, i.e., songwriting, performing, producing, etc. and get bored instantaneously with the "bottom line" and business of music.

I guess that's what managers are for, eh?
Cheers!


------------------
Alex Wolfe Parnes/Canis Lupus Productions
www.canislupusmusic.com


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