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7 Things to Do as a Musician Stuck at Home

You may be wondering how to practice effectively as a musician stuck at home? Being at home doesn’t mean musicians and singers have to put their career on hold,  and there are plenty of  things to do as a musician stuck at home.

Musician

How can you keep your fanbase engaged when all your gigs are cancelled? And how should you spend your days productively when you can’t get to the studio? Below we are 7 things to do to ensure you keep your career as a musician on track during these hard times.

Things for singers to do while stuck at home

With the current climate causing a great deal of anxiety and uncertainty worldwide, musicians like yourself may struggling to maintain a successful career.

The music industry is all about gigs and performances. Connections and collaborations between artists. However, the importance of self-isolation and social distancing has put a hold on that side of things, leaving us musicians in a rut.

You may be disheartened that your recent gig has been cancelled, but take this as an opportunity to focus on your musicianship and follow our simple guide to keep your career on track.

What to do as a musician stuck at home

From online festivals to bedroom production skills, it’s important to keep working on your career as a musician. Don’t let the Corona virus demotivate you from being a musician and definitely don’t take your foot off the pedal. Although easier said than done, being a musician requires consistent marketing and a level head.

Here are the seven tips to musicians and singers about how to keep their career on track during the Corona virus outbreak:

  • Reschedule gigs
  • Focus on your branding
  • Learn a new skill
  • Engage your fans
  • Support other artists
  • Practice your instruments
  • Write new music

Social media and online tools mean that it’s still possible to collaborate and share your music, it also means artists can support each other and spread a bit of love and community spirit.

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7 things for singers to do while stuck inside

#1 Reschedule your gigs

Easier said than done, but it’s really important to email venues and follow up performance opportunities that have been cancelled amid the current climate.

Pubs and clubs being temporarily shut down doesn’t mean they will never be looking for artists to perform at their open mic nights again! So, drop them a message and remind them that you’re still interested in performing once they reopen. If you had lots of payed gigs lined up, then get in contact with the venue and try and reschedule your performance for nearer the end of the year (giving you extra time to practice!).

#2 Focus on branding

Now’s the time to really work on your marketing skills. What makes you stand out as a musician? It’s all about branding and creating a consistent look across all media platforms.

Why not set up a website? This doesn’t have to be expensive, there are many free website making tools (e.g. wix and weebly) and having a website makes your artist profile seem more professional. You can share upcoming performances, social media links, photos from the studio or recent gigs and even snippets of unreleased original music to create a close relationship with your audience.

#3 Learn a new skill

Whether you’re a singer, a guitarist or a budding studio engineer, maybe now’s the time to learn production and mastering skills that make home recordings sound that extra special.

If you’ve ever heard the expression ‘bedroom producer’ then what better a time to practice production than when you are confined to your house! If you can’t get to the studio, then bring the studio to you. Starting with the basics is always a good idea if it’s your first time recording from home.

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How singers can be productive from home

#4 Engage your fanbase

More than ever, people’s eyes are on social media. With online platforms being people’s main source of communication when stuck at home, it would be a good idea to put a lot of energy into building up a strong following on all socials.

#5 Improve your instrument

Now that you have time to spare, it would be a great idea to focus on improving your instrument and honing in on any elements that need extra practice.

If you’re a singer with regular singing lessons, you may be worried about how to carry on strengthening your voice whilst lessons are cancelled. You can look online for singing teachers offering virtual lessons. It’s good to support your local and independent teachers, community Facebook pages are a great place to reach out and ask for recommendations.

#6 Make contacts and support other artists

All emerging artists are in the same position, feeling as though your career is being put on hold during this hard time, adds another layer of anxiety. So, it’s really important to support one another even more than usual.

Focusing on community projects can not only brighten your spirits, but also open up your contact book to loads of musicians following a similar path to you. Online choirs are being set up to unite voices across the country. Signing up for this sort of project could introduce you to possible artists for future collaborations.

#7 Write more music

Finally, without your typical day to day distractions, now’s the time to really tune into your creativity.

Original music is the key to success, so why not take this opportunity to write as many new songs as you can. Put some lyrics to that catchy melody, write a verse to go with that chorus.

Remember, it’s okay to not fall in love with your first original song, sometimes you have to write a hundred verses before the perfect one comes to you. It’s all about trial and error, so don’t be too hung up on a leading line if it doesn’t fit with the rest of your song.

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The Craziest Stories From Rick James’s Life

Rick James was one of those death-defying music legends who seemed immune to the ravages of hard living. But sadly, he was only mortal; he died of heart failure in 2004 at the age of 56. Once you hear some of the crazy stories about Rick James, you’ll be astonished that he made it past 27.

Rick

It’s no surprise that many of the craziest stories from Rick James’s life revolve around drugs. Whether he was doing copious amounts of cocaine before going on stage or making his brother an unwitting drug mule, James was a one-person stand against rehab. And those aren’t even the wildest tales from the life of Rick James. He had plenty of romantic partners – and might have even engaged in some nefarious experimentation.

Rick James may be gone, but what he has left behind are some truly unforgettable stories that have a starting baseline of absolutely crazy. Delve deeper into his biography, and you’ll discover that those shenanigans are nothing short of insane.

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He Made Prince Cry Like A Baby

James did not like Prince. He was convinced that Prince had stolen his moves, and thought the younger artist’s band members were stuck-up and rude. Apparently, that dislike wasn’t enough to stop Prince and his crew from crashing James’s 32nd birthday party in 1980. James’s response? He grabbed Prince by the back of his hair and poured cognac down his throat until he spat it out and “started crying like a baby.”

Two years later, Prince and James nearly came to blows at an after-party for the American Music Awards. Allegedly, Prince refused to give James’s mother an autograph. He eventually apologized, and a fight never happened. James said he “was a little disappointed ’cause I really did wanna kick his ass.”

He Went To Canada To Avoid The Draft

As a teenager in the ’60s, James was desperate to get out of the Vietnam War. Despite only being 14 or 15 at the time, he lied and said he was 18 to join the Navy Reserve and avoid the draft. But two weeks into training, James decided that there was “no point to any of this military crap.” He began flaking on his twice-monthly sessions, and was called up to Vietnam.

In response, James fled to Toronto. There, he met legendary musicians Garth Hudson, Levon Helm, Neil Young, and Joni Mitchell.

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He Was In The Mynah Birds

Toronto was the place to be in 1964. That’s when James, fleeing the Vietnam War draft, ended up there. Almost immediately, he got into a street fight. He claimed he was rescued by musicians Levon Helm and Garth Hudson, who took him to a bar afterwards. Helm and Hudson invited James to join them onstage for a performance, and he impressed them so much they invited him to join their band.

The group became known as the Mynah Birds. They were signed to Motown Records in 1966, and added some new faces to the lineup: Bruce Palmer and Neil Young. Unfortunately, the band’s album wasn’t released; their manager misappropriated funds, and when the musicians fired him, he told Motown that James was a draft-dodger. James wound up serving a year in jail.

The Mynah Birds ultimately disbanded. Former members Goldy McJohn and Nick St. Nicholas formed Steppenwolf, while Neil Young and Bruce Palmer became Buffalo Springfield. As for James, he began working on solo music with Motown.