Monthly Archives: June 2013

The Boss….

Pretty cool !

The Boss RC-300 Loop Station

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Sonicbids Review and New Lesson Learned !

I’ve been using SonicBids for a few years now paying  $10 a month for the subscription. .  Before web savvy booking, promoters wanted hard copy promo packages which would add up to almost $10 a package when you consider postage, ink, paper, cd, photos, nice glossy folders & gas to the post office! So with this  and the price of latte’s in mind, Sonics subscription is not bad at all.

     Unfortunately, I haven’t had much success,… until this year.  Some of the submission fees were too expensive. I’ve come and gone and returned again mostly because maintaining the profile there has some advantages.  Besides having video, photos, press, audio and bio all in one easy to view place, the stage plot has also been of use when booking larger gigs who hire sound companies that must have a stage plot to prepare for you and make the show flow smoothly .  I just easily copy & paste the stage plot page link in my email to the promoter when booking outside of SonicBids.

       Now since 2011 Sonicbids has introduced “Token gigs,”  FREE gig submissions !  This has been a wonderful thing for those of us who are paying members. 10 tokens for basic level members, 25 for supersonic level members. I started using the tokens with a full on commitment only a few months ago and am now beginning to spark interest and some bookings pretty much in concert with my efforts. i.e. when I forget to submit , things slow down.

         I just learned a new & valuable lesson on SonicBids today that I needed to share.  After receiving an update from SonicBids on one of my submissions, I logged on to my submissions page to check other submissions as well.  In the past I’d see the red dot with words “Not Selected” after a particular submission and that was as far as I went. I used to check the “Details” link when rejected in the past, but after a while found no reason to check there because the promoters often use a computer generated generic response. So to save my valuable time I stopped checking.

       Today after looking down my list & seeing that red dot on a previous June submission I decided to check the “Details” link to the right of the submission status out of curiosity, with a bit of intuition nudging me . Well, low and behold to my surprise there was a letter from the promoter/booker saying that they’d prefer to invite us to their Fall festival instead of the gig I submitted for, seemingly because the festival was a better paying & exposure opportunity !! Of course I immediately responded “Yes! ” and included a  “Thank You!” in my short message. This was a lesson for me. From now on I’ll check the “Details” link on EVERY submission response.

       I would like to suggest to the SonicBids crew that promoters responses of this nature somehow get  to the artist in a more direct way, like within the Sonicbids submission notification email sent to the artists.  I’m sure I’m not the first to almost miss a message this way. Now I’m really curious to go over all past rejections to read the “Details” link to see if I’d missed any others.

         All in all I’m enjoying the opportunities SonicBids provides, looking forward to more , and very Thankful to them for the service . Rock On everyone and remember when looking for gigs, look under EVERY rock !!

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GripGo , A Musicians Tool ?

Have you tried the GripGo yet ?  If you’re a musician you drive A LOT, to gigs, interviews/auditions, meetings with prospective employers. If you’re a Musician and a Mom like me  you drive a lot (with kids too) and want to utilize that time to get some tasks done, like talking to bandmates/agents/mgrs., listening to & learning new tunes, recording ideas on the voice recorder,  watching a music video ( at the red lights of course) With the GripGo you can do it all hands free. There are some conditions though. Read on.

I read some awful reviews about it not sticking to dashboards. Others said it was either too sticky to phones or not sticky at all when it came to phones with hard to remove “skins” or curved backs.  It would stick to windshields then fall off.

After using my husbands GripGo in his car and becoming intrigued, I purchased a GripGo for myself at Bed Bath & Beyond for $10. I attached it easily to my Volvo dashboard a few weeks ago and it’s been there ever since. After reading numerous reviews of pros and cons I have to say that they’re both right in a few ways.

It does work well on my Volvo dashboard. It didn’t work well with other dashboards in reviews I read. It didn’t work well with my BlackBerry Bold phone. GripGo was so sticky it kept removing the back cover every time I tried to pull off the phone and the battery would fall out as well, almost every time. I got a new BlackBerryZ10 phone and it works beautifully now because there’s no easily removable back cover.

I noticed that if the weathers very hot 80’s – 90’s the sticky stuff doesn’t work as well sometimes. My husband attached his GripGo to his car windshield and has an iPhone and its working well for him.

So , it seems that it works best under very particular conditions. I found what works for me and I’m LOVING having the GripGo. It keeps my eyes at dashboard level & my hands free, so I don’t look down as often trying to grab my phone. I get a bit more done so I’m not so grouchy about having to spend so much time in the car.

Wired review: http://www.wired.com/geekmom/2013/03/gripgo-phone-mount/

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Did You Know….

           ..that I have an app & You can too ?!   It somehow seems very cool to say, ..I have an “app! ”  And friends and fans will appreciate it too cause its FREE and they can carry you around on their phone and hear your music whenever they like, at the touch of  their fingertips. Free for fans & friends and free for YOU the musician. Its also a great handy dandy resume for showing to venue owners for getting gigs on the spot when you just happened to drop in for free food during happy hour.

        ReverbNation has made it painless, easy and did I mention FREE ?! The FREE part is for Androids ONLY right now. Unfortunately Apple is asking  far too high a fee for their app at $299/yr. A little pricey especially if like me, your hitting happy hour for free food.

           So far I’ve heard only positive from fans & friends that have downloaded the app. Have you had any experiences with ReverbNations apps ? Have you tried or purchased the ReverbNation app for Apple phones? Do you prefer one over the other? Please tell me about it, then download mine and send me your feedback.

TRY MY APP HERE for Androids !

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Keep On Rockin’,

:Deborah ♪


Crossing Borders North to Play a Gig? Updates on permits.

While many of us have traveled often to play in Canada, others haven’t. While many of us do it legally , others don’t.

On my first trip, as an AFM member & a part time political activist, I made sure to have all the legal permits in place, just in case.  I wanted an attorney at my disposal. During these times of the Patriot Act, when you can be imprisoned for speaking your mind, I thought better to NOT take chances.  (Remind me to tell you about the time I played Attica State Prison & what they found in my guitar case.:)

When I checked in with my Canadian work permit, they had no idea what to do with it. Apparently I was the first in their experience. LOL I had a feeling that would be the case. All went well after a bit of time on their part ,trying to figure it out.  I phoned AFM and a live person answered the phone ready to help. I was very happy about that . It made it worth every penny of the past dues & permit fees I’ve paid.

To inject my 2 cents regarding the laws, some of the permit fees (i.e. for full bands vs solo) are a bit high for us musicians/bands working our way up. They’re made more for the already famous and making the bigger bucks. SO, I understand indie local musicians trying to evade them. However, if you group a few gigs into one time period say within 3 months its not a problem and it helps keep musicians, the unions and living/fair wages at a high standard,  vs allowing pay-to-play sub standard treatment to become the norm. Then no one wins.

Here’s an article abt updates to international labor laws from American Federation of Musicians, ” International Musician Magazine.”

Join your local , get involved and help make the rules musician friendly, so we can continue to build relationships & share music with our global musical family !

In Solidarity,

:Deborah ♫


Bathed In Colour

Bathed In Colour.


Where’s the Voice Recorder on the Blackberry Z10 ?! LOL !

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So we’re musicians, writers, singers, and we use voice recorders ALOT !  We get ideas in the shower, while driving, cooking, walking , and floating in the pool !  We need convenience.

We went from huge cassette tape recorders (like the one the Long Island Medium uses, LOVE her ! :), to hand held tape recorders, to small digital recorders and now we have phones w/ built in recorders. My Blackberry Bold has bitten the dust. A corrupt app has screwed it up somehow. I have hundreds, maybe thousands of voice notes , song & lyric ideas on it. The best thing since sliced organic dried mango.

I had to buy a new phone and decided on the BlackBerryZ10.  I have a BB playbook, I’m BB entrenched. Well, I got home and realized there was no microphone icon for a voice recorder, only the one for voice texting! I almost flipped! By the way my first flip was when I saw the price.  Oy! I have good credit so it was the installment plan for me.

So I called the BB tech at my phone company and he knew nothing. He suggested I shop the app store.  I checked the manual found nothing, looked online, I was on my own. So I decided to google the phrase “preferred voice recorder app for Blackberry Z10” and I found this forum and “cracked up.” http://forums.crackberry.com/blackberry-z10-f254/why-does-bb-not-have-voice-recorder-app-preinstalled-807027/index2.html

Turns out the voice recorder is located in the “Remember” note app right there on the phone!! You can also turn it on by pressing the button on the right side of the phone,between the volume buttons ! Duh!

Now, don’t ask me why they made us play hide-and-seek this way. Is it the thrill of the hunt? I like a good puzzle or mystery now and again, especially in my younger years.   However I’m at a time in my life where I HAVE NO TIME ! This was a bit frustrating, so I thought I’d share with the hopes that I can save someone the effort and add a few more minutes of chill time to someones already hectic lifestyle. I have to say, I do feel a bit smarter now, but I could’ve written & recorded a new song in the time it took to find that darn app. 🙂 Still Love ya Blackberry, All in all a very cool phone !

Cheers!

:Deborah ❤

 


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