I love and respect the craft of songwriting…
From my earliest memories of listening to my sister’s records of the Beatles, Gordon Lightfoot, and Monique Leyrac, to the constants of my Parents favourites, Vera Lynn, Dean Martin & Nana Mouskouri… I was blessed to grow up in an environment that embraced new and different styles of music, while still showing reverence to their favourites.
For my own “classic” favourites…
James Taylor, Tonic, BNL, Gordon Lightfoot, John Denver, Simon & Garfunkel and, of course, The Beatles (either together, or in their various individual incarnations)
More recent favourites would have to include…
Lindsay Aline, Dan Mangan, Ken McCoy, Dave Mercer, Jessie Farrell, Carolyn Stewart, Misty Weaver, Carolina Rain, Jars of Clay, Switchfoot & Lady Antebellum.
I am blessed to have a supportive wife, and Family that always encouraged and supported any Artistic pursuit. Thus, my childhood lessons for piano with Mrs Gatz, and messing around with a guitar, were later combined with forays into creative writing and poetry, as encouraged by my Dad and “Doc” Ballard… into the songwriting I now love.
My Music Studio is a place of comfort, where I gather my thoughts, and assemble the lessons and influences of the past, and create songs that I hope folks will enjoy.
Here is a link to a few of my Songs…
I further expounded upon the Songwriters who were “instrumental” in my love of the crafted word, in my posting… “Under The Influences”
Thanks for stopping by !
Who influenced you ???
I think it happens almost every day.
As @BobSongs, http://Twitter.com/BobSongs I’m a Blogger, Writer, and Songwriter. I’m on Twitter most days, and Facebook a few times a week. I have a LinkedIn Profile, that I’m working on, but not 100% familiar with, yet.
I’m also involved in the BC Songwriters’ Showcase Association, http://Twitter.com/BCSongwriters and help out with their Twitter and Facebook presence.
I am often surprised by the frequency with which I will encounter someone who expresses a desire and drive to become a songwriter or performer… but have no Photo, Biography or Contact Information on their Twitter Profile.
I understand that a LOT of new users don’t understand the ebb, flow or even the concept of Twitter and Social Media.
But, if you want to attract and grow an audience, then it is important to greet them properly.
Sad as it is, we are a society of people who judge books, by their covers.
As we gather a sense of people from our first impression… so we gather a sense of you, as an Artist, from your Social Media.
Many times a week, I send friendly Tweets to folks, reminding them to fill out their Bio and Location information.
If you are on Twitter to have fun, and talk about school… sure, lock your profile down.
If you are on Twitter to promote your Product, or especially if your Product is Yourself… you really need to put your Best Foot Forward !
If your Band is following 200 Tweeps, but you only have a following of 18… it probably means that you are probably only reaching the hardcore audience (family and friends) that already know about you. You are “preaching to the choir” and the rest of the people you follow are not interested in your message, or your “Product.”
How To Make It Better:
At the top of your Twitter Page, are a series of words… Everthing that people will base their first impression on, (other than your Tweets,) is contained under the Settings “tab”:
1) Post a picture ! If “you” are your product, then the picture should be of you. If that doesn’t work for you, take a picture of a guitar, microphone, or your cat… My picture is currently one of my Cats, who snuck into my guitar case… but I change it regularly ! (Points get deducted for using a photo of ANOTHER person, as your photo.)
2) Say where you are ! Maple Ridge, BC, Canada. If you are not comfortable with saying the exact city you are from, pick the closest big City. Vancouver, Canada If that causes you concern, go regional… Canada’s West Coast Give us SOMETHING, because, who knows… we may want to work or write with you !!!
3) Give us a sense of “you” ! If you are a guitar-playing country music loving songwriter… say so. If you’ve got a bunch of things going on, say that too ! My profile says: Blogger, Songwriter, Writer, married to @loriegray, right-handed, wacky sense of humour, cat lover, Hockey fan, Uncle… and Canadian ! There’s a lot of info in there, but I wear a lot of different hats, when I use Twitter.
4) Websites ! If you have your own website… fill it in ! If you have a MySpace profile, and one song… fill it in ! If you have a grainy video on YouTube… fill it in ! Whatever the ONE best website you have, that represents your product best ? Use it.
I’m not writing this to be mean. I’m not writing this to underscore that Artists sometimes have different gifts, and can be technically challenged.
I’m writing this with the hope that it may help someone look at the deficiencies in their Twitter profile, and be able to effect changes because of it.
If these instructions help you… I’m glad !
If you need help understanding how to implement them, please send me an e-mail or a Tweet.
Please don’t go on, without filling in the blanks… because in many cases, it means we will probably Not Follow You or Follow You BACK… and only YOU know what we’ll be missing out on !!!
Hope to see you on Twitter !!!