Buzz Track: Hold On Tight
Californian singer-songwriter Ed Prosek is creating a buzz with his latest work. His latest track “Hold On Tight” hit 100,000 plays in less than 3 weeks, and reached #1 on Hype Machine. With comparisons to James Vincent McMorrow, Patrick Watson, George Ezra and Ben Howard, he has dramatically announced himself as one to watch on the scene. Prosek has toured the UK, the West Coast of the US and Germany and just completed a 12 date UK Tour that took him all the way up to Aberdeen. Ed Prosek is an artist to watch…
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Renowned music industry executive Tom Sturges literally wrote the book on creativity. In his most recent work, Every Idea Is A Good Idea, he explores the two primary types of creativity- individual and collaborative. While the book is a must-read no matter what you do, filled with excellent advice and exercises to help anyone find their creative center and learn to access it more efficiently, many of us work with artists every day in a non-creative capacity. We followed up with him to find out a little more about how to have a successful relationship with truly creative people, and see what creative turns he has taken to end up where he is today.
In the book Every Idea Is A Good Idea you talk about how deeply personal the creative process is, and how it shouldn’t really be discussed. When you said that a one-hit wonder will go on and on about how a song just came to them, I laughed out loud. We all know those guys. Can you give me a few questions one can ask to get a good read on whether or not a new artist is really tuned in to their creative center? Or is producing material the only way to really know?
True artistry is very genuine, and very truthful in its presentation. And you know the truth when you see, and more importantly, hear it. In a strange way, it’s almost as if the performer doesn’t really care if anyone is listening or not, as if he or she is so in tune with their own music and art that the presence of a witness is insignificant. Picasso could not tell you how he painted, but he could tell you how empty his life would be without his art.
So the questions to ask a new artist would relate to their inspirations, their artistry, their big dream, their favorite song that has ever been written (not their own, I hope), what they were like in high school, and that kind of thing. Come at them from the perspective of complete respect and see how they respond.
You have worked with a lot of very extremely creative people and in your book you share one particular story about an encounter you had early in your career with Carole King. You have picked up a lot of wisdom about creativity itself, but what can you share regarding what you’ve learned about working with creative people, from the business end of things?
Between an artist and the record, there are several intermediaries, including the producer, engineer, mastering engineer, mixer, a&r, etc. Between the songwriter and the song there is no one. When working with artists, the music is almost like a third person in the room, probably because it required so many others to successfully create it. When working with the writer and talking about the song, you might as well be talking about a family member.
The bottom line is that one must be completely respectful of a creator’s art, and allow plenty of room for ego and dreams to co-exist with the vocal, instrumentation, the lyrics and melodies. But, before sharing an opinion with someone about their work, find out if it’s the FINAL version, i.e., cannot be changed no matter what versus a DRAFT, i.e., still a work in progress. If it’s the latter, feel free to say whatever you like. But if it’s the former, pay a compliment relative to your view of the work and say no more.
What do you think it takes to have a successful working relationship with an extremely creative person when you’re not really a collaborator?
If you are working with someone and you are not a collaborator, you need to pick the role you intend to play. Possibly you are the sounding board (listen to all ideas and offer comments and suggestions), the enabler/facilitator (organizer of studio time and finder of musicians, but with no “creative” role to play), or the fan (who loves everything, no matter what). The thing I find most creators need most is believers. So if you cannot be any of the three above, just believe. CONTINUE READING
Since our last feature on Corsica Arts Club this indie duo has released a new single Untamed. They’ve captured the attention of tastemakers at NME, MTV, and KCRW, and were invited by the band Spoon to open for them in Los Angeles. As far as the new single, it was inspired by New Order, Bryan Ferry, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller”, and Iggy Pop’s “The Idiot”. Their last single California I follow immediately made us fans.
Buzz Track: Figure It Out
This is a great track by Jaime Payne, a Toronto folk-pop singer-songwriter. Upon the release of her new MuchFACT video which landed #3 on the Fresh Five Countdownon The Verge/ SiriusXM 173, in October, Payne says, “I play music to share my own stories. I want to sing songs that say something important, not just popular. Something that resonates. Music that you feel to; a song that makes you think.” The track also reached #1 on Top 20 Countdown on Hunters Bay Radio. Payne is an artist to watch.
Vine has become a new platform that music artists can exploit along with YouTube & Facebook.
Here are some key pointers in the article “Can You Build a Business in 6 Seconds?”
“But the appeal of Vine isn’t only in the overall number of people who are using it. In a fashion strikingly similar to YouTube, the service is a home to a new breed of digital stars — artists who are amassing large and highly engaged fan-bases, six seconds at a time.
“Based on numerous industry people we’ve spoken to, a Vine star could make anywhere from $1,000 to $20,000 for a branded Vine video. It’s a pretty wide range, and certainly not a strict one — determined by factors such as number of followers, the level of engagement, and/or if the video is part of a larger campaign.”
“If you look at some of the top names on Vine, you’ll notice that the platform isn’t their only social outlet. The most-followed individual on the platform, Nash Grier, with 9.2 million followers, also has 3.24 million followers on Twitter, and 3.46 million subscribers on YouTube. Jerome Jarre, with his 7 million Vine fans, has 697,000 followers on Twitter and 754,000 subscribers on YouTube.”
Musician Shawn Mendes, who found popularity on Vine by releasing six-second versions of cover songs, recently debuted his first album, which spiked to number one on iTunes in less than 40 minutes after its release.
Brittany Furlan, the leading lady of Vine with 7.1 million fans — who has scored brand deals with the likes of Trident, Reebok, and Universal — has 182,000 supporters on Twitter and 129,000 on YouTube. Her goal is to eventually be a movie star, and thanks in large part to the audience she has cultivated online, she recently booked an appearance in an upcoming Zac Efron movie.
But the fact remains, while Vine can be a great creative outlet for budding digital stars, for many, it remains a gateway to something more — just like every other digital platform.
“I think it’s so important to be living on all these different environments and all these platforms,” adds Jonathan Skogmo, founder and CEO of Jukin Media, which works with Vine stars like Logan Paul and BatDad. “I’d say the same thing about a YouTube personality.”
So, the question again, can you build a business in six seconds? Short answer: Yes, because it’s just the beginning.