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Music Artist Spotlight- Tristan Bushman

Posted on September 7, 2015 by admin

What does winning* the 2015 Illinois Dream Night Talent Search competition mean to you? Tristan Bushman- Music Artist Spotlight

It is a really cool milestone for me. It was such a great experience spending the weekend with so many talented musicians and getting to hear feedback from the mentors. It was a very humbling experience.

What inspired you to become a musician?

My dad, who has been playing in bands for as long as I can remember. I started getting up and singing with his band when I was 5 years old and haven’t slowed down since then.

What surprises have you encountered in pursuing your music career?

Having my song played on the radio was a really surprising thing. It was shortly after I released my first single and I started getting messages from friends saying they heard “Girl You Done Me Wrong” on the radio. It was one of those things that I will always remember.

What has been your biggest challenge to date?

I just put out my first record “Heartwood” at the end of March. That was a really challenging task, aside from the obvious struggles of writing, recording and choosing which songs to put on the release. There is so much more that goes into the process like picking album artwork, photos, liner notes and so many other things that go into it. Releasing an album is such a rewarding thing though. Being able to hold it in your hands at the end of the process is an amazing feeling that makes it worth every second.

What’s your process for writing lyrics and where do you get the inspiration for your songs?

My writing process is a thing that is really hard to explain. It varies with different songs but most of the time it all starts with just me and an acoustic guitar. My songs usually have to do with a specific time or event in my life, a time that inspires me. I write down lyric ideas every day in my phone notes, whether it’s one line or a full verse, it is a great resource for me. I will go back and build off of those ideas when I have downtime to write.

Tell us about your most memorable performances.

I got up to perform at age 14 at the Evanston SPACE with a Nashville Singer Songwriter Andy Davis. He was and still is one of my favourite artists, and to get to share the stage with him for a song was incredible. More recently, within the past year I have performed on the stages of the Chicago House of Blues and the Arcada Theatre. These are performances I will tell stories about for the rest of my life.

Anything else you want to share?

My latest release “Heartwood” is available on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, and CDBaby. Check it out!

*Tristan Bushman & DownFall NSB tied as the overall winners of the Illinois Dream Night Talent Search competition.

You can check out Tristan at https://www.talentwatch.com/artist/profile/tristanbushman

Music Artist Spotlight- Gianna Isabella

Posted on October 18, 2014 by admin

Music Artist Spotlight- Gianna IsabellaWhat does winning the ‘New York Dream Night Talent Search’ competition mean to you?

It means the world to me. It is so surreal that I had the chance to just perform in front of all of those amazing people, but to win the chance to get recognized means everything in the world to me.

What inspired you to become a musician? 

What inspired me to become a musician was my mother and grandpa. I grew up in a really musically inclined family, so being around all of the music and shows I just saw how much fun my mom was having on stage and one day I just asked her to begin giving me voice lessons and she’s been motivating me since then.

What surprises have you encountered in pursuing your music career?

Some surprises I’ve encountered within the music business is that I actually made it to the top 40 girls on xfactor and also I’ve had the privilege to record in the studio more than most kids my age, so I am very grateful for that.

What has been your biggest challenge to date?

My biggest challenge would have to be trying to have a normal teenage life and going to high school, getting home from the recording studio at 2 am most of the time, and hanging out with friends on a normal Friday night when I have a show or having to do my homework on the road and studying to be able to keep up my grade average.

What’s your process for writing lyrics and where do you get the inspiration for your songs?

At the moment I am just getting into writing songs with the help of my mom. She has been a song writer for Sony publishing for many years and is continuing to encourage me to start writing.

Tell us about your most memorable performances.

My most memorable performances have to be when I was at the Cola Coliseum for xfactor and when my mom sometimes surprisingly brings me on stage to sing with her.

Have you shared the stage with anyone we would know?

No, I have not shared the stage with any musicians you may know. I am just beginning to branch out into the music industry, putting myself out there for the world to see.

Anything else you want to share?

Another thing I would like to mention is just that singing has been my dream for as long as I could remember and even if I don’t make it in the music industry, I will never lose hope of my dream!

Check out Gianna Isabella at http://www.talentwatch.com/artist/profile/chris1931

How to Put a Band Together

Posted on July 31, 2014 by admin

How to Put a Band TogetherWhether you are a solo artist who wants a tight group of musicians to fulfill your vision to compliment your vocal skills, or a singer-songwriter who wants to crystalize ideas with collaboration – you need a great band to do it!

Find Players

Advertise your need for band members. You can do this on specialty forums, on your area’s craigslist, or the old fashioned way – by printing out a flyer and sticking it to the bulletin board in your local music shop. Include what you are looking for (i.e. a bassist, drummer, or guitarist) and what kind of skills are required. If you are a beginner, don’t ask for expert level musicians unless you’re pretty sure you can keep up with them. Meet the candidates and gauge whether or not you are compatible (ask what kind of music they enjoy, and what styles they feel comfortable playing). If you are a solo artist looking for a talented backing band, you may need to compensate the band for their time – otherwise, you’ll have to rely on friends to develop the talent and sound you need for free.

Practice, Practice, Practice

After you’ve decided on your band members, get into the garage (or practice space) and start practicing! You can’t be a band if you cannot play songs together. Start by playing cover songs that everybody enjoys to get a feel for your new band’s talents. Then introduce your own material, and ask for input. Collaborating with a band can make your work shine, especially if you let others’ skills and passion come through in the music. This practice period will also allow you to figure out if you truly can work together with your new band members on a musical level.

Pick a Name

This name will follow you everywhere, so make sure it’s a good one! If you’re a solo artist, you can use your real name or decide to work under an alter ego.

Agree on a Look

As much as we hate to admit it, looks matter. That’s not saying that your band has to be all handsome young people. Rather, your band should have a look that agrees with the genre of music you play. You do not want to look like a bunch of goth punks while playing country music (unless you are purposefully creating a playful theme). You don’t have to go all out Beatles and wear matching suits, but each member can at least agree not stray too far from one style. Don’t forget to add photos to your social network so people can put faces together with your band.

Book Gigs

Start small – a birthday party, an end of the year bash, or a block party can all make a great stage for a new band who is just starting out. Ask your friends and family to keep their ears open for potential gigs. You can also try to play at open mic nights, community talent shows, or family reunions. Don’t think you’re going to be rocking out in your local club right from the start. But when the time is right, approach booking personnel and offer your services. If you have footage of your last show (even if it was at a teenager’s birthday party), email it around to people who might be able to set up shows. Guerilla shows in alleyways, under bridges, and in backyards are common in towns with thriving rock and roll scenes. If you are a more classic singing act with a backing band, offer your services for weddings and special occasions.

Spread the Word

Don’t forget how powerful word of mouth can be. Flyers, social media profiles, and your friends can all come in handy when advertising your next show – or the fact that you have music available. Cross-link all your social media profiles so that someone who stumbles on each of the band members on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., can instantly find your songs or band on sites like TalentWatch, Reverbnation, Bandcamp, or YouTube.  These resources are also important for venue bookers deciding on bands. Encourage your fans to spread the word and share your posts.