Archive for April, 2010

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Tips on how to license your music

April 29, 2010

The importance of having someone represent your music for film/tv has increased dramatically in recent years.

Many supervisors echo this sentiment.

Good thing I’ve been pitching music to film/tv for almost 10 YEARS!!!!

Need someone with the right relationships to the film/tv world? Contact me!!! You’re wasting your time if someone hasn’t been doing it as long as I have….

Excerpts taken from an interview with music supervisor Ron Proulx:

How can artists find out about new projects and their related music supervisors?

That begets the question of how should artists be looking to get their music in film and TV. It used to be that an artist, because there weren’t so many trying to do this, could get heard above the noise. Now I think the best way to find out about stuff is getting someone to work on your behalf rather than you yourself trying to find it. I just don’t buy into one artist with five songs or fifteen songs spending time trying to get their music into TV shows. It’s too competitive, too many people doing it now. I’d leave it up to the people that make it their job to find out what shows are looking for music. I have people send me two songs and I tell them “You’re kidding me, you can’t be sending two songs to people, you’re killing yourself”.

Is it realistic to think that artists can approach music supervisors directly or are their chances higher going through a company/library/etc?

I can only speak from our point of view. I think that life has changed and therefore the latter is the better method now. We used to deal with artists directly all the time and really enjoyed it. In fact we have made some really good friends with certain artists that we’ve licensed from a lot. But it would be very difficult now, in this environment, to get our attention as a single artist, not impossible, just far more difficult because there is just so much other noise happening and so many other people with a lot of recordings. You can only talk to one person at one time and if I’m going to talk to you for only ten minutes and hear about your ten songs I should spend my ten minutes talking to you if you have a thousand songs. So it’s a better idea these days for artists to deal with people that do this for a living. They are much more plugged in. Or if you’re an artist, here’s another way of doing it, go find 10 other artists that will let you do it for you and them, then you’re becoming the guy that is doing it for a living.

What catches your attention when you receive a new submission?

Something that sounds passionate, different or rather unique, because it is very hard to capture my attention if you sound like Madonna or you sound like any band that I know. But, when someone sounds truly different, it’s like back in the day when you first heard Massive Attack, you went “wow, what’s that?”, or the first time you heard Portishead and went “What’s that?”, or the first time you heard Loreena McKennitt and you went “What’s that?” That’s what gets you, it’s when you say “What’s that?” as opposed to “That’s just like so and so, yeah, yeah, I’ve heard that before….”. For me that doesn’t do it so much. There is so much music out there that it is hard to make it unique these days.

Would you say that with the current economic situation and budgets music supervisors are more eager to work with indie bands?

Yes. It has been going like that for several years now. It’s nothing new. The question might be “Where is this going?”. Of course we use indie bands. We love indie bands. Almost 95% of what we license is from indie bands, in fact maybe it’s 98% from indie bands, come to think of it. For every 100 licenses we do probably 98 of them are with indie acts.

What do you think about music supervisors being the new A&R’s?

That has been happening for a while, at least the last several years. The A&R for what is the question. A&R for record companies? But where are the record companies? One of the few areas that artists are able to make money now, outside of live, is through licensing. Therefore, I think that the license-ability of an artist is something that perhaps helps somebody decide to work with an artist because it is one of the very few true revenue streams. If you’re a manager and you want to manage a band, I would expect that the license-ability of that artist has something to do with your decision, if economics has something to do with your decision. We recognized in 2003-2004 that we were the new A&R. We realized that if all anyone did was just listen to what we were putting in TV shows, that was where the quality music was because you can’t put bad music in a TV show typically. It stops people cold. So sure new A&R but for who? Because the opposite is going on too, the other end of the stick, which is people that are downsized from record labels, and people who used to want to be A&R guys now want to be music supervisors because there are no A&R jobs.

How much money can indie artists expect to make from licensing music into TV and Film?

The fees are coming way down real fast. Supply and demand, which any business has, supplies go down, fees go up. Supplies go up fees go down. There is an endless supply of music now. It is so easy to find music it is ridiculous. So the fees have gone through the floor. When people used to say things like “we’ve got $20,000 dollars” they’re lucky to get $3000 in that same environment. People are much more aware, producers are much more aware of the whole music licensing thing. And people have been competing on a cost basis, which is always bad for any business to compete with cost. That is how Walmart competes with other businesses, on cost. They keep the cost going down, down, down because they have pure volume. We even get people trying to give us music for free. I have no expectation that our producers will go that low but they won’t pay a lot for it. Music traditionally has been something people don’t want to pay a lot for, like live music at the bottom end of the barrel.

Jennifer Yeko
True Talent Management
9663 Santa Monica Blvd. # 320
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

~Music Marketing~Music Licensing~Music Publicity
www.truetalentmgmt.com

“Do, or do not. There is no try.”
— Jedi Master Yoda


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The future of music is on the Internet, right? Amazing tips for promoting YOUR BAND and music online from major labels, superstar agents on leveraging social media marketing & digital music

April 20, 2010

The future of music is the Internet and social media, right?

Adapt to this new model and see your music career take off (i.e. every myspace band that’s gotten huge) i.e. Owl City

Don’t adapt to this model and die off (see major labels…)

I recently attended a panel with A&R executives from major publishing companies, the CEO of eventful.com, a few other new media experts from major labels and tech companies and tech. experts from major talent agencies like ICM/William Morris/CAA – as well as a popular DIY band here in Hollywood. Here are some of the tips of what they had to say (I’m not using anyone’s name as I don’t want to misquote them…)

This is AMAZING information here!!!

EMERGING ARTISTS:

-Do a blog about your band

-Get Perez Hilton to post your song

-Give away a free song on your web site (but only if you collect fans’ email addresses in exchange for the free song)

-Tell fans, if you leave a comment on my youtube page + give me your username, you get a free song

-One popular local band licensed their songs to HBO + Verizon

-They also optimized their web page so it comes up high in Google search – so when you type their song lyrics into Google, their blog comes up

****

Use eventful.com to get a booking at a club. One band couldn’t get a show and faxed a page to the club’s booking agent saying “Look we have 285 fans who want us to play in your city” – they got a show as a result where they couldn’t before

****

A&R executive – success in your home town ISN’T impressive – but success in SURROUNDING cities IS (unless you’re drawing 3,000 in your home town)

****

-If you aren’t spending time ENGAGING your fans, you’re missing the boat

-Twitter – don’t use just to promote your shows but TWEET “Happy Birthday” to your fans personally, etc.

-Engage and INTERACT directly and PERSONALLY with your fans on a PERSONAL level

-Do a remix contest – this is interesting to kids

****

-As an artist, your job is to CREATE demand for your music/band + CONVERT that demand into sales (concert tickets, CDs/downloads, t-shirts, etc)

****

-Be INTIMATE with your fans

-Do CLEVER things

-Use SEO (search engine optimization) – with your song lyrics

****

-When you have new fans on facebook or twitter FIND OUT WHERE THEY ARE COMING FROM!!!

-Ask them 1) How did you find out about us?

2) What’s your favorite song, etc.?

****

A&R at major labels – it comes down to HIT songs

-Everyone tries to get on music blogs – like Pitchfork & Stereogum, etc.

-A&R doesn’t care about a lot of myspace or facebook or twitter followers (after the panel, others disagreed with this statement) but this is perhaps why some major labels are floundering?

-A&R is more interested if bands are asking fans what they want, who they are, etc. than simply amassing lots of followers who may be fake or not

****

-The best way to get recognized is to MAKE GREAT MUSIC

-Labels / A&R / etc. KNOW you can hire companies to bump up your myspace numbers & plays but if the music is crappy, no one will care

****

-A&R says if you’re an up and coming band, songs are obviously the MOST important thing but SOMEONE in the band needs to be doing the business side

-Major labels still have relationships that can push you out to the most eyeballs

****

Indie artist perspective (from an indie artist):

-Labels are signing less and less artists these days

-Artists used to want to get signed

Major label perspective (from a major label executive):

-Still, if you want to be a superstar, you need DEEP POCKETS at a major label

-Even for mid-level success, you need some kind of label

****

-Use tunecore.com to get direct digital distribution for your music on iTunes

-The drummer always seems to be the “tech guy” (why is that?)

****

-Artists, managers + agents are smarter now.

-Maybe the artist has a clothing line, etc.

-You need to look at ALTERNATE revenue sources (like a clothing line) these days

****

-TAKE THE MONEY THAT YOU MAKE FROM YOUR MUSIC AND RE-INVEST IT IN THE BAND!!!

-If you can get a budget, you can hire the same radio promoters and publicists that major labels hire!!!

-Artists may not want to sign 360 deals

-But some artists will sacrifice revenue for fame!?! (why??? That’s pretty stupid, isn’t it?)

-Some artists rather have a larger chunk of a small pie rather than a sliver of a huge pie (this is probably the future?)

-What if Apple starts Apple radio? Will regular radio matter?

-Labels will want less songs on CDs if they are sold for $10 so they pay less mechanical royalties

****

-Labels are downsizing liking CRAZY

-Even if you have a label deal, you can still do things on your own to promote your music (and may, in fact, NEED TO!) i.e. OK Go YouTube videos.

-Labels are lacking human resources do all the work that needs to be done at labels right now

-Artists can go out on their own and make a living on their own – using social media

***CREATE a ONE-ON-ONE relationship with your fans – now it’s not just about facebook and twitter!

****

-Use ustream.com to broadcast live

-Geo-target to fans

-Give your fans 1st access to things (Selena Gomez did this with her movie – she shared it with her millions of online fans before anyone else)

****

-Devo put up 16 tracks on their site

-They said “Pick the 12 you want on the album + tell us which song should be the single?”

****

-Involve your fans in your artists and career

-Fans are becoming a PRODUCT, if that makes sense

i.e. YOUR FANS CAN BECOME YOUR MARKETERS!!! So then, who needs a label if your fans are marketing your music and often times more passionate about you/better at it than a label?

-Building your social media network is a means to an end; maybe not a direct end

i.e. you can make money from your social media network if you do it right

****

-Look at an app. (iPhone app) as a way to engage your fans

-Trivia games for bigger bangs like Pearl Jam i.e. giving away content in an app with information that you can get elsewhere is silly and you’ll alienate your fans if you make them pay for an app. that has no special songs or information

****

-Respect the relationship with the fan becaue if you lose them, it’s HARD TO GET THEM BACK!

-The tricky thing is to “monetize” your fans

-Remember that when you are online you’re only getting a certain demographic of fan

i.e. many fans/people don’t have iPhones, etc.

****

-Foursquare is being used by venues and record stores to promote themselves i.e. check in once at the Roxy, get VIP, 2nd time, get a free drink

-Maybe you can find a way to use it also

i.e.

-Tell fans to check in at a show – it shows up in their facebook feed and you may get new fans this way checking you out

-Reward fans for multiple-check ins if they come to several shows.

****

-Panel’s prediction – the next “big things” will be foursquare or ustream.com

-Ustream – a great social utility to connect with your fans

-Micropayments will be HUGE – i.e. pay a few pennies for access to an article online or for liking a song

****

-Myspace may be bigger in rural towns vs. Facebook in cities?!?

-Nobody cares about what you’re eating for lunch or when your single is coming out – don’t use twitter for these things- ENGAGE your fans!

-Use your twitter to ENTERTAIN people + social network i.e. tell jokes, etc.

-A lot of people follow tweets but don’t tweet themselves – remember than when tweeting!

****

-YouTube – for every 1,000 viewers you get $ .60

-How to monetize YouTube? Make a cool video (of anything – like film the Sunset Strip + imbed your song in the video’s background) = you can make money this way!

****

IN SUMMARY:

-BE AUTHENTIC

-BE PERSONABLE

-CREATE A 2 WAY DIALOGUE WITH YOUR FANS

Need help promoting your music? We can help! Email us if you need any help promoting your music and let us know what your budget is!

Jennifer Yeko
True Talent Management
9663 Santa Monica Blvd. # 320
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

~Music Marketing~Music Licensing~Music Publicity
www.truetalentmgmt.com

“Do, or do not. There is no try.”
— Jedi Master Yoda


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What to do when you have a “bad” gig – i.e. hardly anyone shows up…

April 11, 2010

It’s inevitable that, as a performing artist, you’re going to have great gigs and “not so great” gigs.

All you can do is control how you react.

I’ve managed artists that, upon seeing a poor turn out at a gig, decided it “sucked” and decided to play a crappy show and complain about the lack of a crowd all the way through the set.

Think doing one bad show doesn’t matter?

Think again!

What happened?

The promoter heard the band did a bad set and the promoter never booked that band again.

A better thing to do would have been to say, “Fine, there are only a few people here. Well, I’m going to make sure I win over each and every one of them. I’m still going to give it my all because this is what I love doing so I might as well make the best of it.”

And, in fact, I’ve managed bands that sold more CDs and merchandise at a show with 5-10 people in the audience than a show with 400 people in the audience.

The artist was so amused at the small crowd, he even took a bathroom break in the middle of his set. Now while this generally isn’t a good idea, he did it in a cute/funny/amusing way. He charmed the audience. He stopped caring and taking himself so seriously and that night he really made a break-through in terms of how he performed.

****

Now I know, as an artist, one of the hardest things you may ever have to do is perform to a crowd of none. Or a few people. Or a club with just the bartender, door guy and waitress there.

But hey, you rehearse and there’s no one there, right?

So maybe look at any gigs you do with a poor turn out as a fancy dress rehearsal.

Have fun.

Who cares?

****

I’ve managed bands where one day they’ll be in front of a crowd of 10,000 people at a festival – and the same night (or very next night) they’ll literally be in some dive bar performing for almost no one.
I know this must be hard on the ego — but as an artist you have to figure out a way to deal with it.

Say to yourself, “Self – Well, this is still more fun than going to the gym or doing laundry or rehearsing in front of the mirror” — tell yourself whatever gets you through the set.

If the crowd is THAT small, have fun with it!

Get each and every audience member up on stage with you at some point.

Jump off of the stage and go talk to them — or sing to them from the audience.
Mix it up.

I guarantee that if you connect that well with a small, small group of people, they will remember YOUR show as the one where they got to go up on stage. I bet they’ll go home and tell 10 friends. Or they’ll tell 100+ facebook friends, “Hey, I was in this club with 3 people there and this guy/gal/band put on the most incredible set. He even made me a drink in the middle of his performance” or something to that effect.

You never know what could happen from just winning over ONE fan.

One tastemaker.

One person who just LOVES you and tells EVERYONE they know about you.

Try it next time.

And remember.

Gigs are like day jobs.

You’ll have great days.

And not so great days.

You’ll get through the not so great days.

And the next day, the next gig, will be better!

Have a sense of humor about it.

Have fun.

Life is too short to get upset.

***

Feedback on this email (already!):

Jennifer,

Your emails are always great but this one takes the cake. I am the person that I am today for always making the best of small crowds! Talk about building character and humility.

So many of us artists get so lost in the whole ego part of it that we totally forget what it’s all about when we let a small audience stop us from putting on the best performance we can put out for the people that actually bothered to show up! I always treated each and every challenging night as an opportunity and treated those in the audience like they were the only important people in the world!

Shame on any musician that doesn’t learn to leave their egos at home when their job is to entertain the people that actually showed up! It’s a bigger challenge than having a much bigger audience hence why the potential reward is so much greater, the artist approaches each and every situation the same! It’s their job!

Thanks!

Lourdes

****

Dear Jennifer,

As a footnote to your e-mail, for which thank you :

“On their first American tour in October 1978, The Police gave a concert at Poughkeepsie in upstate New York. There were less than 10 (ten) people in the room, but instead of packing up and going home, the group decided to amuse themselves and gave an excellent concert before coming and talking to the public. As luck would have it, among the rare spectators were three enthusiastic DJs.

Thanks to them, the song ‘Roxanne’ was in constant rotation on the radio from the next day. It was the beginning of a huge love story between The Police and America.”

(Roughly translated from ‘The Police and Sting’ by Christophe Crénel, published by Librio.)

Best wishes,

Richard

****

Jennifer Yeko
True Talent Management
9663 Santa Monica Blvd. # 320
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

~Music Marketing~Music Licensing~Music Publicity
http://www.truetalentmgmt.com

“Do, or do not. There is no try.”
— Jedi Master Yoda


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Think superstar artists didn’t tour their butt off and hustle to make it big? Read this email from Jewel…

April 1, 2010

This is an email Jewel wrote to her fans but in her own words, describing how she became successful.

Think successful artists didn’t tour their asses off and promote, promote, promote along the way?

Read this – I guarantee it will inspire you!

Also, in other news, if you’re looking to promote your music to radio, film/tv or press, hit me up. My April is looking really jammed but I might have time to squeeze in a few new projects.

Jennifer

****

Posted in From Jewel on March 11, 2010

I’d like to tell you all the story of you.

While I watched my own career blossom, I got to see the mirror

image of my fans blossom, and we grew together, and because of each

other.

When I was young and getting discovered, I was terrified of

living in my car forever, but I was also terrified by fame. My

solution? Make a folk album. I thought if I could have a career like

my heroes John Prine or Tom Waits, with a cool cult following, and

make a good living, then that would be the thing to do. Boy did I

have no idea how far that folk album would take me.

Before I got discovered, reason I loved singing in the coffee

shops in San Diego was because it made me feel less alone. When I sang

on that tiny stage, I could see and feel the hearts of the few people

who came to see me, and I could talk about my worst fears, my worst

insecurities. I could express my rage and my doubt and my unabashed

hope – all because I could see in the eyes of those listening that

they felt the exact same way. A bond was formed when I sang, telling

secrets on myself – that was special.

As you know, I grew up singing in bars, doing cover songs. I

didn’t experience what I’m talking about here. When I sang my own

songs and got to tell my own truth, it was like magic – it was like

being in church. It felt like being forgiven. It was like confessing

my sins, and for doing so, I was rewarded with the kindness strangers

offered, I suppose, because they saw themselves in me, too. It felt

like medicine at a time when I so badly needed positive reinforcement.

The more I told the truth, the better I felt, the closer people felt

to me, and the less I felt alone. It was just a raw human experience.

I didn’t know that before I released my first album, there fans

were already using the newly formed internet to spread the word about

me. I just packed up my guitar, and began doing relentless tours that

I called ‘residency tours’ throughout the country.

My idea was to try and recreate what I had done in San Diego, by

playing the same coffee shop the same night of the week for a month in

a given city. So I did this circuit that was grueling. I played the

C’est What? Cafe in Toronto every Monday, Boston Kendel Street Cafe

every Tuesday, The Last Drop Cafe in Philadelphia every Wednesday, The

XX in NYC every Thursday, the book store every Saturday in DC, and

then I would drive it all over again and do it every week for a month.

I would then move to another region like the northwest, and do it all

over again.

I only sang in front of a few folks, but I was able to form a

small loyal following, provided they didn’t walk out during Pieces Of

You (the most misunderstood, yet plainly obvious song I’ve ever

written). The more I toured the more industry insiders told me I would

never make it, I’d never get played on the radio, Nirvana and Sound

Garden were God, and it wasn’t cool to be sensitive and care. I guess

that’s when the fight came out in me. I had lived through hell, and I

still found it in my heart to care and to have hope because the most

genuinely desperate must. It’s the spoiled slackers, in my view, who

could cling to their cool veils of cynicism, because they could afford

to be cynical with their comfortable lives. I was on the edge of the

abyss, and staring into it, I knew the only thing that would keep me

from falling in and being lost forever was if I dared to have faith. I

fought like hell for the right to hope.

The world was full of grunge bands and angst on TV and in the

movies, but what I saw in front of me touring was different. I saw

something different in the faces of those who I sang for. The tide

felt like it was going to change, and the press just didnt know it

yet. People didn’t want to hurt- they wanted to feel better, just like

I did. And just like me they were willing to fight for it. I began to

feel like maybe I could beat the odds. Maybe, just maybe, I could

stick my foot in the door of the male dominated music business,

because I felt like I had a small but fierce army that was marching

with me.

I began to hand out flyers after I sang, with local radio

stations numbers on them, and I asked people to call and request me.

I sang in college campuses everywhere I went, and passed out my

flyers, and because of the web, I was aware that I was not alone.

There were folks out there that cared about my music and about me, a

complete stranger, and they were trying to help me. I began to call

them my Every Day Angels and amazingly we were a force to be reckoned

with.

As my career began to break, I became a bit scared. Fame really

scared me because I had always been so introverted, and I was afraid I

was creating a monster I may not be able to control. The media scared

me, and I wasn’t sure how to interact with them. But my online fan

community always let me be myself, and I tried to continue to tell the

truth in my writing, and I began to feel I could have a two way

conversation with fans as I grew bigger.

I realized IDOLOTRY is what scared me about fame, because it was

jut that, an idle worship. It does not help anyone grow- the worshiped

become frozen in a mythological caricature that was immovable, (and

usually resulted in falling off said pedestal) and being a sycophant

or worshipper of said idol offered no self-examination or self

empowerment. I wanted a different relationship with my fans- one that

empowered fans- one that let me off the hook! I wanted to be human and

grow and make mistakes and be imperfect, and I wanted fans to rely and

look to each other for answers to their hopes and prayers- not to me.

As I became successful, I was receiving gifts and so much love,

and I felt like my life had turned around. I mean my life REALLY

turned around! My fans and me really pulled it off, and I was safe,

and comfortable, and I was being showered in gifts from fans. But I

felt guilty, because I didnt need gifts as much as other people in

the world that I knew. I decided to ask my EDAs to take whatever they

wanted to send me for my birthday, and instead give to someone who

needed it. And in typical fashion, they went above and beyond by

organizing the most amazing acts of kindness. Funds were raised to

help a local San Diegan get a handy cap vehicle that was sorely

needed. On my birthday I received a bound folder of page after page,

documenting community service and charitable acts committed by my

fans. It was the best present ever.

I even had an EDA who happened to be a lawyer help me with a

lawsuit I was facing, when I desperately needed the help. He worked

tirelessly in a time that was really hard for me. It was very touching.

Life being life, it never stays the same, and soon I experienced

some of my hardest years around 2003 – and all I have ever been able

to say about it was what I expressed in GOODBYE ALICE IN WONDERLAND. I

lost faith for a while, and as my world seemed to shatter, I had to go

back inside myself and try to challenge myself once again to find a

way not to become cynical or bitter. I wanted to be stronger, not

broken by what life had dealt me, but it took me a while to find my

way out of a dark hole. I didn’t trust anyone, and while I still made

music (because it still is what heals me) , I lost touch for a while

with everyone but Ty as I tried to put myself back together again, and

I’m glad to report, I feel good. I am not broken. We only are if we

let ourselves be.

In just a few short years the current age of the internet is so

exciting, as I feel I am able to return to a even more personal

relationship with my fans, in an even more direct way.

There are many new fans that I have, and I want to welcome

them. Some of you are country, some of you are pop and some of you

are rock, with a secret soft spot for whatever it is I am – but all of

you must love lyrics, otherwise you wouldnt be here.

I want to introduce all my new fans to the best fan community I

have ever heard about- and I want to invite you all to become EDAs.

I have created a Twitter account for you, and as you join it,

you will be added to the list. Click HERE to follow.

I will commit to figuring out a date to do another free fan

concert for you all, if you want to organize it yourselves again, (you

guys want to pick a name?) We will work it around my schedule like

last time of course, and I look forward to figuring out a good venue

where and when that it can happen!

Lastly, as EDAs, I would like to share with you what I would

like our call to arms to be:

Be kind to each other.

We have a rare community that is truly diverse – respect

everyone’s differences here. No matter the political, religious or social

orientation, we are all the same and trying to figure life out.

Build each other up, don’t tear each other down.

This is a hard enough world; we can all use a place thats

positive.

Dare to be honest with each other; you will be rewarded for it.

Tell secrets on yourselves, you will feel much better.

Be miracles for each other.

This community is what you make of it. The charitable acts, and

the course of the EDAs is up to you – it’s yours. Some of you need

jobs, while others may know someone who needs an employee. Some of you

create artwork, while some of you may need a logo for your own

business. Some of you need medical advice; some of you are doctors.

And some of you need someone just to listen. Pay attention to each

other, and if you run across something thats easy to give, give it.

We are all connected on this crazy web, and we can really take

advantage of it. I can personally attest to the fact that profound

change happens in small ways – and what you can do with your own hands

is POWERFUL.

I look forward to more years of making more music. I really feel

my best creative years are ahead of me, and with you guys backing me

up, I feel confident there will always be a place for me.

Finally, below is some more in-depth info about the EDAs that

Alan wrote, please feel free to read it if you want. Its really cool.

Lastly, I want to thank each of you, and especially my original

EDAs for continuing to be a miracle in my life. I dont think any of

you will ever know how my life has changed because of you. I was no

one special – just a scruffy kid that got turned away from a million

places. You all made me feel special. It gave me courage and I began

to dare to learn to shine my little light while I sang and when I

wrote. I am no different than each of you. It sounds corny, but it’s

true – we all just need to dare to shine.

xxj

EDA History (originally written and posted in 1998)

In 1994, a couple of San Diego based members of an Internet

discussion group that focused on women in music began a side

discussion about the virtually unknown San Diego coffeehouse singer-

songwriter, Jewel Kilcher. Upon hearing Jewel several months later at

The Kendall Cafe in Cambridge, Jeff, tech-savvy listserv owner, was

intrigued enough to create the first internet discussion group

dedicated to the discussion of Jewel’s music and performances. The

jewel@smoe.org mailing list/discussion group, was officially launched

the following

day on Sunday, February 19th, 1995.

Like countless other Internet discussion groups at the time,

the handful of initial subscribers enjoyed discussing their common

interest and keeping each other informed. They also circulated taped

live recordings and TV appearances (via snail mail, primarily) which

gave them a wider perspective on Jewel’s increasingly prolific output.

Through these initial efforts and upon the release of Jewel’s first

album, more people became interested and within the first year, the

list had grown substantially.

During that time, an organized effort to promote Jewel’s live

appearances began and listmembers began relentlessly calling radio

stations in support of Jewel’s first album, which at the time, was

going nowhere fast. Interest continued to grow and a handful of

listmember fansites were created over the course of the next year or

so, increasing her online presence. Jewel appreciated the support very

much and referred to them as her “Every Day Angels, a phrase taken

from her song, I’m Sensitive. The name stuck and became commonly

notated as EDAs.

Soon enough, EDAs began meeting each other at Jewel’s

performances and friendships beyond the daily email discussion began.

The EDA numbers continued to grow through 1995 and early 1996, but

unlike other rapidly growing Internet groups, the EDAs continue to be

one of the most intelligent, inspired and friendly places anywhere on

the Internet.

In mid-1996, a woman on the list suggested how enjoyable it

would be if Jewel were to perform a concert exclusively for this

discussion group. Timing was right. Jewel and her management agreed

that this would be a fun idea. The subscribers were informed that

Jewel would enjoy doing this provided the EDAs join her in Bearsville,

NY (where she’d soon be recording) and organize all details

themselves. After much organizational effort, a free private show was

planned for July 18th, 1996 at The Bearsville Theater in Woodstock,

NY. A second benefit show was also planned for the following night

with all proceeds going to help the struggling Bearsville Theater.

Hundreds of EDAs from all over North America converged in

Bearsville and spent several days camping together and experiencing

two of the most diverse and engaging performances of Jewel’s career.

The EDAs named the event “Jewelstock” and they created t-shirts,

buttons and came bearing gifts for each other in the form of music,

food and drink. After spending three days and nights together, many

attendees struck up permanent friendships and everyone who attended

left Bearsville significantly moved by the experience and Jewels

kindness. That such a diverse group of people could come together and

create something so great, all of them motivated by love of music and

a desire to share, without any monetary pressures or incentives,

speaks volumes about what the EDAs are all about.

The dynamics of the discussion group were forever changed by the

experience. Many EDAs began taking Jewel’s lyrics to heart and

manifested them in projects that helped to support each other as well

as to promote volunteer work improving their own communities. The EDAs

have accomplished impressive things over the past two years, many of

which have been selfless acts of kindness that have had profound

impacts on the recipients and the EDAs as a whole. A wonderful

example occurred in conjunction with Jewel’s 23rd birthday. Rather

than send gifts to Jewel, the EDAs were encouraged to effect positive

change in the world as their gift to Jewel. Sure enough, a perfect

opportunity presented itself. The entire EDA list organized to help a

severely injured hit and run victim from San Diego, who had no medical

insurance. He was in need of a van outfitted with special lift

equipment so that he could be mobile, return to work and resume a more

enjoyable life. The EDAs raised several thousand dollars, which was

donated to the fund and helped him accomplish these goals. San Diego

area EDAs also took it a step further, by spending time with him,

sharing favorite concert tapes, and bringing him to local concerts.

With the EDA numbers rapidly growing as Jewel’s first album

was taking off, several members began organizing a nonprofit

foundation (Every Day Angels Foundation aka EDAF) which promoted and

helped organize community volunteer work. These EDAs inspired many

projects including blood drives, clothing drives, volunteer work at

food banks, children’s hospitals and shelters, among many other worthy

endeavors.

EDA get-togethers have also taken on a life of their own. One

notable form of these events is “The Living Room Tours” (aka LRTs). An

ongoing project, where live performances are hosted at EDA homes, this

has been remarkably successful. The basic concept is to book touring

singer-songwriters directly into fans homes and promote the

performances cost free via email directly to those interested. Nearly

50 artists have participated in the Living Room Tours over the past

two summers and Ive yet to hear any of them refer to it as anything

but a positive experience. Having attended many LRT gigs and having

hosted two of the largest ones on Cape Cod, I wish I could do nothing

but LRT gigs! The concept dramatically changes the dynamics between

performers and audience in a most positive way. The musicians seem to

revel in the fact that everyone wants to listen and audiences

experience an immediacy and connection not experienced in any

traditional performance setting.

An annual EDA reunion in Bearsville has also been well attended

and smaller EDA parties and get-togethers are increasingly common.

EDAs often travel far and wide to attend these events. Thousands of

lives have been enriched through the efforts of The EDAs. Many feel

honored to be included and the recipients of The EDAs common good

will. MrBB

***

Jennifer Yeko
True Talent Management
http://www.truetalentmgmt.com

http://www.truetalentmgmt.wordpress.com – Read my music blog for advice on making it in the music business