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The Most Important Thing I’ve Learned: Don’t Try To Control Your Creativity

I have spent a lot of time writing songs. A LOT of time. It started when I was 13, matching up simple poems to the first 3 chords I had learned on the guitar. Fourteen years and a huge stack of notebooks filled with songs later, I still notice something peculiar about it: you never know how the song is going to turn out. I’ve also realized that you also never know where those songs may lead you in your career path. It does take hard work overall, but those moments…

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The Most Important Thing I’ve Learned: Be Your Own Clock

Often times, and especially when you are DIY, artists have deadlines they have to meet. They have to have songs done in time for recording so they don’t waste time in the studio. They have to be on time for shows. They have to get the video out in time for the corresponding season. They have to book shows 5 months ahead of time. It’s crazy! When I was recording the demos to my newest batch of singles, I was very concerned with timing. I was getting them done, but…

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Mental Health Matters: Overthinking

It’s normal for me to overthink things. From the small day to day elements that hardly get a second mention, to the overarching difficulties in life that feel sticky in my head, there’s always something coming back to me again and again. When I’m going through life as I usually do, I’ve learned to combine a healthy mix of a stimulating and busy schedule, a calm, direct approach to over thought worries and being honest with my friends and family as a means to overcome. It’s important to both not…

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The Most Important Thing I’ve Learned: Patience

I have played in various musical projects for the majority of my life, some of those projects did better than others, but the main points of learning ring true for every band, regardless of skill or genre. The main, and most important learning moment that happened for me, and this took quite a while to sink in, but it is critical, is that while playing music you have to learn to be very patient. Patience is a virtue that will never hurt you, but is unfortunately very difficult to manage…

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The Most Important Thing We’ve Learned: Finding Your Niche & Creating a Community

One night last year, Derek and I were standing by a dumpster in an alley before playing a small club in Hollywood. Having just loaded in down a narrow hallway, ducking around bartenders, dishwashers, and drunk patrons, we found ourselves back in the alley by our van. We were checking each side of a dumpster for gear we had pre-loaded around it, when a black pickup truck with oversized tires pulled in behind our van and started honking. It was a bartender about to start his shift, and understanding we…

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The Most Important Thing I’ve Learned: Use Your Shows To Build Relationships

Our touring experiences have definitely changed our outlook on playing shows. Instead of just focusing on the performance, we have learned to treat the entire night as a networking event. From the time we arrive for load-in until we close the doors of the van to leave, we look for every opportunity to build relationships with everyone at the show. There are a lot of bands who choose to hang out in their vans or hang out backstage before they go on stage, but those bands miss out on a…

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The Most Important Thing I’ve Learned: Identify What You’re Thinking & Feeling In The Moment

Building a career in the music industry is difficult. Being in a working band is difficult. Writing and crafting sincere, yet marketable songs is difficult. All of this would be IMPOSSIBLE if you don’t have a highly developed sense of how to clearly communicate with all parties involved. It took awhile to figure it out, but I’ve learned that listening more and speaking directly and articulately, will move you forward faster by avoiding problems before they happen. Before we get too far here, I am no expert. I’m still learning,…

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Mental Health Matters: Helping Someone Through Depression

When my dear friend had a really terrible season of depression, it was difficult for her to get out of bed in the morning, to function normally in her daily life. She missed days of work and spent most of her time in her room alone. As a person with naturally high serotonin levels my first reaction was to tell her to snap out of it. People with depression hear this type of advice all the time, but they, more than any of us want to be happy, and they…

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Mental Health Matters: Self-Loathing

I found music in a very typical way: I was searching for something, anything, to hold onto for dear life. A traumatic early childhood left me silenced by fear and unable to find any words to communicate what happened to me even if I had wanted to tell someone. I cried the first time I listened to Seether’s “Finding Beauty in Negative Spaces” at 11 years old. Shaun Morgan’s lyrics hit me in a place that I had buried so deeply I didn’t expect anything ever to find it. I…

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Mental Health Matters: Stage Fright (and Facing Your Fears)

Six years ago I was huddled backstage with a prominent world musician at an iconic Sydney music venue, gripped by a familiar sense of dread. My stomach churned and a thought passed through my mind. Why do I keep doing this to myself? I was about to walk on stage and stand in front of a group of absolute strangers who would sit quietly, between the photographs of musical greats that lined the walls, staring at me while I sang. What a weird thing to do! I thought, I could…

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