Did I Say I’m a Songwriter?

Where I Do My Deep Thinking: At the End of My "Green Mile Think Tank"

Hey, last Monday was Labor Day, so I didn’t post, I took a week off, and I relaxed.  Not a bad endeavor.  It’s OK to chill a little.

Lately I have been re-focusing on what my day to day emphasis is in music.  It seems that for the past couple of years I have been all caught up in the performance thing.  I like performing, I like have a band that kicks ass, and I certainly like having an audience that is into what I am doing on the stage.  With that said, I am, nonetheless, a songwriter.  That really is the only claim I am justified in making.  I hardly ever do cover material, and my performances are all original.  Songwriter.

I am working out a deal with a local wine bar where I will play every week from 8-10 or 11pm through the winter.  I’ve done this before.  It is a good way for me to work out changes I want to make with my act.  I have been playing in bars and clubs where I need to put on a rowdy performance.  It’s fun: jumping up and down dancing while I sing, screaming at times, working the crowd up into a crazy, scary, mob.  Now, I am thinking of doing a show where the audience can hear/listen to my lyrics, and interact with me.  I am seriously considering doing house concerts, though I am not sure where to begin with that one.

My current task, as I see it is to get the act ironed out, work up material that fits an intimate venue, re-arrange my working play-list to fit the new agenda, and get as tight as I can.

With all this in mind, I am considering how the new marketing will go.  I’ll need different merch, and stuff that reflects me as a solo act.  I am designing a new logo, with stickers, buttons, and press kit with photos that show me as a singer/songwriter who can do more that be a rowdy, wild outlaw.  You know, housebroken.  It’ll be kind of “Hilary Lite.”  I don’t know if I can do it without laughing myself sick, but I’m going to give it a try.  It’ll be fun until my next big idea.

Is it over for 45-90?  No!  But I will be playing with “pick-up” bands, which I did Friday night and just blew the doors off the joint.  But, I will play solo most of the time.  At least for now.

Thanks for reading and following the curves and quirks of my songwriting/performing extravaganza.  If you have any comments, please feel free to click the “comment” button and rave on.  Hilary

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10 thoughts on “Did I Say I’m a Songwriter?

  1. Hey Eddie, thanks for your comment! Also thanks for reminding me about Rockabilly and Rock ‘N’ Roll sax work. below are a few links to one of my favorite sax players–Clifford Scott. Enjoy! I sure did reliving some of my favorite music–thanks again!

    Beach Bunny by http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3z1TVxLCpKw&feature=related

    Kangaroo by Clifford Scott http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m1hns4Yg3HQ&feature=related

    Lavender Sax by http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PaUylgYVeI4

    Bill Doggett with Clifford on sax and Joe Pass on guitar http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bq4NhcfurgU

    • Thanks Mr. CountryMusicOutlaw, for your comment. I like small venues for the interaction. They ask questions, I get to give my “Rockabilly Quiz” which is a lot of fun and teaches Roots History while getting a laugh or two. Yeah, you’re absolutely right, small venues are the real deal. I just wish that they paid as much as the big ones do. I guess I can’t have everything.

  2. Hey, Amigo,

    Quite the interesting post. I’m heading in the opposite direction for the moment, until I can connect the two venues again. I’m a Songwriter that has played the “Sweet Home Margaritaville” shows for a living since around 1992.

    My error was to put too big a separation between Listening Venues and Dance Halls. I’ve written “serious” songs, and when I find the right audience, they resonate in a MOST beautiful way, bit here in West Texas, the gigs that pay the bills are about filling up the dance floor, or at least putting on a SHOW in some way.

    The answer seems to lie in writing good songs in a danceable form. We’ll see how that works out.

    In the meantime, I have a resource for you to check out; http://www.ConcertsInYourHome.com . It’s a database for House Concert Hosts and Artists. It’s “filtered” – in other words not every artist makes it on to their roster – and that makes it a more trusted source for the hosts. In addition, the owner, Fran Snyder, goes to almost all of the Folk Alliance and other Music Showcases, with the result that there are hundreds of potential gigs.

    I’ve just joined, after being on their email list for several years. Fran’s feedback on my website was informative; he said that it lacked focus on the Songwriting side of my presentation, and could cost me opportunities with hosts that have NO interest in “Cover Songs”. I’m in the process of correcting that now.

    I’m off to do that very thing. Good luck!

    Tony Barker

  3. By the way, I have no affiliation with CIYH, I just like the guy, and what he’s doing for Songwriters. It would be cool if you mentioned that I sent you, but there’s no affiliate fee or commission that I know of.

    Safe travels!

    Tony Barker

  4. Hi Tony Barker, thank you so much for reading my blog, but thank you even more for your kind response and the great lead. I will certainly follow up on it. AND, good luck as you embark on this new phase of your musical journey. Peace brother, H

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