Your Music Is Bad & You Should Feel Bad

Posted by on 8:27 PM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Everyone – musician, artist, accountant, whatever, – every human has been criticized. I’ve had people call my music shit. Yes, it hurts. Yes, it sucks. Yes, it has happened. And – yes, it will happen again. What do I do after? Sometimes, I wallow. I sit there and pity myself and question my passion, dedication to, and love of music. I hate the person who said it and I hate myself for believing them. One of several things brings me out of this place.I comfort myself by looking at music gear online or playing music. It’s silly, but it works.I look to my friend, my partner, my Lady for her support and feedback. She has a way of grounding me and bringing me back to my usual hopeful, daydreamer, full-of-wishes, stars-in-my-eyes, believe-and-it-will-happen self. (THANKS, LADY!!!)3.I Fight an internal battle where I defend myself and argue with a version of whomever said such vicious things that my mind makes up – and, win or lose, I give them the old bird and go about my way. Again, usually with some help from my Lady.   My point is this…IT DOESN’T MATTER IF SOMEONE SAYS THAT YOU ARE SHITTY AT WHAT YOU DO – IF YOU LOVE IT, KEEP DOING IT! Note: As long as it is morally okay, hopefully legal, and so on… Don’t hurt other people, don’t hurt yourself, don’t hurt animals… You get the point. Here’s the thing, the world is full of negative feelings, thoughts, and people. Sometimes those thoughts & feelings are inside us – and sometimes those people are the ones that are closest to us. Other times it is Joe Barfly who drunkenly shouted insults at your bands first show, or Jane Von Hoity-Toity who says your art isn’t art at all at your first gallery showing.When it’s inside your head, there are a number of ways to ground yourself – just look at some of these links. More can be found pretty easily. But, this one, this one, and this one are right here! If it’s someone else, then look to your strengths. Look to your passion to get you through it. Look to your friends, your Partner, your fans, your family, chances are that at least one of these people will say something to contest whatever insult was slung your way. Sure, it sounds codependent, but having someone who has your back is a beautiful thing. Don’t rely entirely on it, but use it to help your own inner strength. Don’t forget, you can also look inside – sure, you have that hateful voice in your head – but you have the voice that loves what you do and has faith in you somewhere in there too.I want to say, to my Lady, to my friends, to my family, to my three fans, to my Self –Thank you for your love and support. I won’t give up. I don’t want any of you to give up, not now, not...

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5 Ways To Get Over Stage Fright

Posted by on 9:38 PM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

5 Ways To Get Over Stage Fright

I have a lot of people ask me how I can get up in front of a crowd and play music, tell stories, make jokes, perform. Everyone seems curious about how I don’t have stage fright. I read blogs like Sonic Bids who post about different things for us music folks to do – like THIS and THIS. While I think they have some good ideas, I thought I’d put together my own ideas. I hope they’re helpful. So, here’s my list of how to get over stage fright. Don’t. Even after years of performing with bands, and more than a year as a solo act – I still get nervous. I feel the anxiety coursing from my brain down to my nerves right now just thinking about being on stage. So, what do I do? I use it. Being on stage, I have two choices: I can either put on an authentic show and let my fear power me, or I can put on a mask (more of that later). Use the fear, use the anxiety, use the nerves. When I let go and just embrace it, I find I not only give a better performance – and one that is enjoyed more by the audience – but I also find it easier to find the groove for the night. Sooner than you’d believe, the fear is gone. Suck It Up. The truth of the matter is that most of the audience won’t really care if you’re nervous. They are there to see you perform, to hear some music, and to let go of their own worries and have fun. I tell myself this before almost every show, “Suck it up. You want to be a musician, you want to sell albums, you want this as a career? Then suck it up and go play the show. Or, go find a different passion.” And that is, in a way, the truth of the matter. Do I want to play music for a living? Yes. Do I want to constantly tour and play shows? Nope. I dream of the introvert musician life – but, until I can make that happen, I’ll do what I have to on a stage. The Mask & The Bluff. Everyone’s heard the term Fake It Til Ya Make It. Sure, that’s one idea. But, why not take it a little further? When I need an extra boost, I’ll emulate some of my heroes. I’ll go into Tom Waits mode and tell a story that rambles around while using a raspy voice. Or, I’ll play an instrumental or something that lets me go a little crazy on the guitar – I’ll pretend no one can see my face, like Buckethead. I encourage my fellow performers to find a mental place they can slip into as a mask, it can help. BE WARNED: Do not overdo it. Your audience is there to see YOU, not your impression of someone else (unless you’re in a tribute band). So, don’t get stuck in the mask. Deep Breaths and Vision. Okay, you’re up there on a stage, you’re playing your show, what are you forgetting? Breathe! Take some deep breaths. It’ll help to get rid of the anxiety (it aids in turning off the amygdale – The Fight or Flight response – read more about...

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Posted by on 4:55 AM in Uncategorized | 1 comment

David The PageStrange Musician, Marketeer of The Little Guy, & E’lir of The University. Experience & Credentials 1984 – Manifested in Flesh Form. 1994 – Began playing the guitar. 1996 – Formed first band, E Point O. 1997 – Forewent Bar Mitzva to instead begin studies at the College Heights Library in San Diego, and go to Pearl Jam Concert. 2000 – Began school at Idyllwild Arts Academy. 2002 – Graduated High School by the skin of his teeth. Was granted full scholarship to Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle. 2003 – Left College due to injury & irony. 2005 – Mistakenly claimed to have discovered El Dorado; turned out to be Phoenix, AZ. 2006 – Went on multi-state tour with new band for several months. 2007-2008 – Taught High School English & Literature. 2009 – Mistakenly claimed to have discovered The Lost City of Atlantis; turned out to be Phoenix, AZ again. 2009 – Returned to San Diego, began marketing for small independent businesses, artists, & musicians. 2011 – Mistakenly claimed to have found Themiscyra; turned out to be Idyllwild, CA. Immediately gained employment at INK Book gathering. Became The Humble Book Dude; became responsible for book reviews, inventory, and general peace-keeping.2011 – Met Rick Barker & forced him to teach me everything about Evolution, Obscure Music, & Naming. 2012 – Began playing music at Higher Grounds Coffee Shop with Pete Pedro Anderson every Saturday Night under the name Pedro & The Page. 2013 – Became a major part of Pedro & The Pages, playing with a full band at Higher Grounds, and all around making sure everyone (including us) had a good time. We succeeded. Huzzah. 2014 – Began giving Marketing advice to local businesses & artists. 2014 – Finally convinced Mr. Barker that I am almost human, and thus an ideal candidate for a student. 2014 – Mr. Barker’s book hit the shelves, and thus my life was improved. 2014 – Met My Lady. Nothing has been the same since – for the better. 2014 – Found The Lost City of Atlantis. Finally got one right. 2015ish – Went on to start a solo career as a musician. Also began running all marketing for Higher Grounds. 2016 – Released first album under David The Page. 2016 – High-Fived Rick Barker. 2017 – Found the real El Dorado. Everyone there thinks Taco Bell is amazing. I introduced them to Robert’s Jalapeno Sauce & became a God to them. 2018 – Accepted the Lifetime Achievement Award for my music. Presented to me by Tom Waits & Dave Grohl. I accepted via Skype, as there were too many people there for my liking. 2019 – Discovered a new continent: New Canada. 2020 – Was asked to go back in time & play for then-to-be President Gerald Ford’s twenty-first birthday. 2021 – Reassembled Pangea. 2022 – Broke apart Pangea; keeping Wales, Iceland & California attached. 2023 – Went back in time to 2016 to High-Five Rick...

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Fun With Music Marketing Don’t – as told by this crazy guy who is not yet a “Successful Musician”

Posted by on 4:28 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

So, as I’ve said before, I do a lot of research on the things I love, feel passionate about, want to be successful at, need to know for work stuffs.I have read a lot of blogs and articles on how to be a successful musician, having a good website & blog, social media, you know – the whole shebang. I try and implement as much as I can ~ but with a twist. There are some things I disagree with. I am not going to go to other band’s shows and promote myself. I have had people to this to my old bands, and I’ve seen it at shows where I was in the audience. My general rule: if you’re not playing, don’t push yourself. Sure, there are exceptions! If you are playing that venue later that week, then promote some – BUT, ask THE BAND THAT IS PLAYING if maybe they’ll give you a shout-out! I have found it anywhere from tacky to downright offensive to see bands hanging out at shows (and usually disrupting them) by trying to get the crowd to come to their show or buy their EP. It’s even worse if you show up at someone else’s show and try and get the audience to leave the show they are at to come yours! Yes, I have had this happen while I was playing onstage.There are ways to handle this, but I’ll get to that some other time. Another I can’t say I’m all about… Tell Your Friends! Do I want people to share my music with their friends/family/bunkmates/crew/random people they meet on a Greyhound Bus? YES! TOTALLY! I will even ask that people share my music or posts every once in a while. The catch there – once in a while.  So much of what I have read tells us (musicians) to ask you (the listener/fans/strangers at the Greyhound Station) to Like/Comment/Share/Tag A Friend – SHARE! SHARE! SHARE! TELL YOUR FRIENDS, TELL YOUR MOM! TELL CHARLES DICKENS, BECAUSE HE WOULD DIG THE MUSIC!Right… I think if people want to share, then they’ll share. I hope some of the people who listen to my stuff find it worth sharing – or they have that one friend/family member/bus driver that they think of when they hear a certain song. And, if not… That’s just fine by me!  REALLY! I don’t want to pressure people into sharing my music, or make people feel guilty if they only listened but didn’t buy, or they only dropped one dollar in my tip jar when I play! I don’t want to be a pushy musician! Here’s one that I am trying to let folks know I don’t do… The E-Mail Sales Pitch. Like any musician, I have a growing e-mail list (have you signed up?). See what I did there? That’s about as far as I’ll take that. In so much of what I have read and researched there is a lot of “Sell Through Your E-mails!”I’ll pass. I use my e-mail list to let people know about upcoming shows, new songs that have either just come out or are about to come out, send fun pictures of my cats giving me funny looks, and – of course – book reviews! Do I ask if people have bought/listened to my album? Sure. I’m not that stupid. BUT, I don’t hound them with it! I...

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Life, Fictional Characters, & Inspiration

Posted by on 5:21 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Being a musician, a writer, a painter, an artist – hell, being a PERSON – has its ups and downs. This I can attest to. Life is a rollercoaster of The Good, The Bad, and the WTF?… This is Life as I know it. Oh well…It is this Life, the Life I’ve lived, the things I’ve seen and done, dreamed and chased, worried about and feared, failed and succeeded, taken pride or shame in – all these are the basic building blocks of not only who I am today, but of the music I create. Is it really that simple?No. Not even close. Example: Who the hell is Mr. Tom, and what did he ever do to me?Who is this Charlie character that is working his way into numerous songs that I’m writing?Who am I referring to in the song In My Mind? Well… The short answer is… They are all fictional characters. Yes. Fictional Characters. Mr. Tom came to me as an idea; someone who stood for all the evil, greed, and bad in the world – from Wall Street to Cancer.Charlie is someone that started off in short stories I wrote years ago – he is to me what Frank was to Tom Waits, what Tyler Durden was to Himself, what Harvey was to Elwood P. Dowd. He isn’t who I am, or what I want to be necessarily… He is just someone who goes on adventures, gets into trouble, and doesn’t understand that there is a filter between the brain and the mouth.As for the person I’m singing to in the song In My Mind…Her name is Jaenelle Angelline, and – you may have guessed – she is a fictional character. The song is, for me, from the point of view of one of the men who adored her – her adoptive father ~ Saetan Daemon SaDiablo.By the way, if you haven’t read the Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop, and have a strong stomach, go read them. They are quite the journey, and they touch every aspect of Life – music, dancing, sex, violence, regret, revenge, beauty, power, love, hatred, food, and so on. In my Life I have spent a lot of time with my nose in a book – and books have, of course, made an impression on me. I love writing songs for/about/with fictional characters. Why shouldn’t they have lives, too?Same could be said for movies.But, I’m getting off track. I was talking about Life. Life. Life. Life.If you’re looking for some kind of inspiration, just look at Life.But, as I said, it does have its ups and downs…                     I don’t know about any of you, but I’m not a big fan of the downs.Anxiety, worry, depression, mistakes, regret, stupid decisions, trauma… And all that before my morning coffee! No, really, this is a part of what I call my Life. I’m not happy about it, and I’m not proud of it (especially the bad decisions and regrets) – but they are there. These are all in my past, and (much to my chagrin) most of them are in my present in some way or another. For me, music helps me to work past it. To learn from my mistakes, to forgive myself or others, to not worry about thing that I have no control over, to help get me out of whatever has...

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New Strings (and a guest)

Posted by on 4:15 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

I bought new strings today. Sounds pretty boring, right? Normally I would agree with you, but today was different. Today, I bought strings for my guitars with the proceeds from my music sales. Still not impressed? I am. I am able to buy something from selling my music. THAT is f***ing HUGE for me! I know, it’s just strings, but that is a major part of a guitar! Without the strings, a guitar can’t be played (well, it could like a drum or something – but, you know what I mean). I can buy myself strings. When I clicked Purchase (yeah, I bought them online, I like to try out different strings and gauges and such), I was about as giddy as a kid who had been accepted to college! Really! Ask my Lady, I was going on about these damn strings forever! Now, let me make this clear, I am not saying any of this to make people feel guilty about not purchasing music – be it from me or any other musician – you have free will! If you don’t want to buy something, don’t! I am simply saying that this is a major first step, and I am SO damn happy about it – I think I might do a jig! Now, let me say this again. I bought new strings today! I bought new strings for all of my guitars. All four of them. There’s my new Fender Strat that I bought myself for my birthday – all white with a hige headstock, my dream guitar.  There’s the Martin that my Lady got for me as a Thank You For Existing gift – from the moment I picked this guitar up, it felt like magic to me. The Taylor was a gift from the family of my friend Pedro. I probably have as many memories with this guitar as I do with the man who used to play it.Then, there’s my oldie – a knockoff guitar covered in stickers I bought when I was just a teenager from my local music shop (Anyone in San Diego, go to Moze!). This guitar has been through hell and back with me, and for years it was the only instrument I had.Then, there’s my banjo. Doesn’t get new strings (yet), but still an awesome instrument. Still, what makes it greater, I got to buy strings for all of them – and when they get here, I am going to restring and play all of them. Not at once, but probably over the course of a day. I have stories and memories and different feelings I get when I play any of these guitars – even the Strat (who is the newbie in the bunch). I love my instruments. They give me more than I could ever say. I got to buy new strings today. It’s a good day. And then, there’s my new friend – I call him Rags (short for Ragamuffin). He likes to help me with mixing & mastering, too. He made my day a little better, too. Thanks, Rags, for being a guest in my photos for my blog ~ and photo credits go to my Lady. She also makes my days good...

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The Dreaded Day job, Charleston Chew, and Taking Time Away

Posted by on 6:47 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

So, I’m a musician (obviously). And that’s just great. Really! I love it, I love playing music, writing music, production, even listening to music really gets me jazzed (get it?). But, what about the other stuff?Sure, I write one (crappy) novel a year, and I love writing – I think I do better at reading books than I do writing them, though. But… What about the dreaded Day Job? Does anyone really care?  I do, but that’s because I have to do the job! If I were reading this, it wouldn’t matter all that much to me. So, let’s skip it. But, not entirely. Sometimes, with other musicians, or artists, or writers, or just people – we start talking about the Day Job versus our Passion, and how to not let the former get in the way of the latter. For me, sometimes it does. And that sucks. I have to try hard to not only keep my work at work, and my mind on what I love when I am enjoying music – but I have to constantly reset my boundaries! With people I work with/for, customers & clients, bosses, even with myself! I have to stop sometimes and say, “Dude, you’re not at work. Put that shit down, grab your guitar and just play!” Sometimes it is friggin’ hard to do, too. There are times when all my mind has room for is work this and work that – and I can’t remember how to play the chords to Something In The Way by Nirvana. Other times, though, it helps me push through whatever worker’s block or writer’s block I have and I come up with some new ideas! NEW IDEAS ARE AWESOME! They lead to new songs!Or, at least a few moments where I don’t have to think about everything else in the world… That’s nice, too… Like having a Charleston Chew…Mmmmmm….  Charleston Chew….But, even when it comes to music I need to take step back, get it off my mind, and do something else. Sometimes I have to force myself to take a break from music.  Sometimes I can get so into writing a song, or recording and mixing, or just coming up with sounds that I think are strange and fun, and then… Boom… Fatigue.I need to just rest, have a bite to eat, spend time with my animals and my lady, just veg out like a madman. It’s not a bad thing.I like vegging out.I’ll bet you were thinking there was a point to all this, weren’t ya? Nope. Just letting you know how some things go. I want nachos. Yeah… That’s what I’m talkin’...

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Small Town Musicians & A Tortie

Posted by on 1:56 AM in Uncategorized | 3 comments

I live in a small town. Seriously. It makes South Park look like a thriving metropolis of doom!In my town, we’re in the mountains, and about 45 minutes drive away from anywhere else. Sure, the views are nice, the air is clean, and it’s impossible to get a burrito after 9 pm… The venues for music are surprisingly plentiful, but they all have their niche. One place loves jazz, and sometimes blue-grass. Another, all about the usual bar cover-songs (i.e. Brown-Eyed Girl…. Yeah…. No…), and others love classical music, or The Eagles. My venue is a little different. It was home to my old rock n’ roll cover band, and has let a fair share of musicians come in and play. My venue is The Coffee House. And, again, small town – only one coffee house. It’s kinda a big deal. It is the central hub of most of the town and its visitors. What makes it even more special… I play a mix of originals and covers. And, I have had people request both kinds of songs BY NAME! How bloody cool is that! Sure, I have some friends (John) that think it’s funny (John) to call out things like Taylor Swift (John). In a small town, you get to know a lot of people, and they get to know you. I laugh, he laughs, the crowd secretly judges him for asking for such a thing – a good time is had by some. What’s nice, though, is that in a small town, in a small community, I can support my friends who play music. I’ll admit, I don’t go out much to shows (introvert) – but, I buy their albums (Juls, hurry up and release yours! Been waiting YEARS!) – and I try and show them as much support as I can. Even the amazing musicians I used to play with still amaze me, and I can’t wait to see what they do! Joe, our drummer, is growing and becoming in so many incredible ways – Musically and in life, he just blows my mind. Shawn, our keyboardist & Doors enthusiast is back in Philly, and while he works on both political campaigns and the local four-legged folks, I know in his soul music still comes to him. He is also an amazing producer, song-writer, composer, and all around cool cat. When someone plays in town, no matter if it’s a weekly gig at the local pub, or the once-in-a-while-Summer-in-the-Gazebo gig, I try and send people their way and send good vibes to them. I have to admit, there are a lot of musicians in my town. Sure, Radiohead says “Anyone can play guitar” – but there are a lot of amazing, fantastic musicians in my town! What makes it even better is that it never feels like a competition to me. It just feels good that when I’m setting up for my gig at the coffee shop, and the guys in the multi-vocal, awesome-harmony oldies band are setting up in the wine bar, we wish each other the best of luck (and fun) at our shows. And, we genuinely mean it! And, ya know what? IT FEELS GOOD! I dig their tunes, and we even have a few that overlap – Neil Young, in particular – but, we both have very different...

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What is Disjointed Folk?

Posted by on 1:38 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

  Disjointed Folk…    Just kind of rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it?    Nope. Not really.     So, what is Disjointed Folk?    Short answer: That’s my genre.    Long answer: ….        Well, the long answer is that Disjointed Folk is how I describe not only the music & lyrics I write, but the stories that go with them, the characters that they involve, and – to a certain point – my point of view of all of the above. Disjointed Folk isn’t just a genre, it’s a mass collective; it’s a mindset & a way of life, it’s almost a path – a winding one to be sure. No, we’re no lost tribe of Israel, and I don’t even know who the We in this is… I can only speak for myself, but I can play music for all the displaced, discontent, disturbed, disowned, discarded, disconnected, discouraged, disenchanted, disparaged, and even the disjointed.     I suppose my genre includes ranting…    Disjointed Folk music became the name when I was first putting the songs together for The Storyteller’s Impasse. I was talking about getting the songs mastered by different people (as I’ve written about in other posts), a friend of mine – a folk musicians & songwriter – suggested that I rethink that idea. “The whole album might seem really… Disjointed.” She said.  BINGO!   In one word she had solved a few problems for me. I had no idea what to consider my genre of music, and I had no clue how to tie these songs together – they had all come from different parts of my mind, my life, and my interpretation of what had transpired. Thus, Disjointed Folk was truly born.    So, Disjointed Folk it is.    So, I give a call to these people: if you are an introvert who longs to travel all the quiet roads, if you are struggling with a mixture of wanderlust but hate to break away from routine, if you are uncomfortable in your own skin but loathe the idea of being anyone else, if you are discontent but have no real reason why, if your Storyteller has ruled you for too long & you are ready to revolt…                                   Get Disjointed, my...

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Instrumentals: The Sound & The Meaning

Posted by on 1:49 AM in Uncategorized | 0 comments

I’ve had a few people ask me about the meaning of my instrumentals, what the story is, how they should feel about them, and so on… So, let me speak both as a musician who writes instrumentals, and as a listener who loves instrumentals… When it comes to movie scores, symphonies, or operas there is usually a story going along with the music. Instrumental music, be it one track, an album, or a full collection, aren’t much different. There is still a story behind what makes the composer/musician and the sounds that they want to make. There might be an overarching theme. There may even be a story behind it all. The major difference is that we, the listeners, have no idea of that is without more input from the musician. We can only guess, assume, or – what I like best – make up our own story to go with it. I would like to share some of my favorite instrumentals… Buckethead is one of the artists that I look up to, that I listen to for inspiration, and that just wows me with his sounds. The stories that I make up for his songs have gone on to be short stories I’ve written, characters that have made it into other songs, or just amuse the hell out of me.    And, absolutely amazing live….  Sure, some of my own don’t have stories, they are just musical ideas that tickled my brain. Then there are others – the three instrumentals I have released so far (Ode, Man With P_________ Chasing A H____ Named S____, Lacking Hubris) all do, in fact, have stories to them. But, with more on the way, the titles will become more unusual and the music will tell tales of its own. So, I’ll leave with a few more instrumentals that I love… CHEESY VIDEO!!! And, awesome piece of music… Where would I be without SURF MUSIC! The Ventures were one of my first major influences and musical loves. I still dig them – and torture people by breaking out their tunes at disgusting volumes…. Ennio Morricone…. Genius. Last, but certainly not least, is one of my favorite songs ever (this one might surprise you). Jeff Beck takes a classic, a beautiful song that originally had words and makes it an instrumental that is haunting and...

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