101 Tips To A Better Band: #7. Submit For Things (Grants/Awards/Etc.)... Even If You Don't Really Care About Winning
Another Juno Awards submission deadline passed yesterday... a handful of projects I worked on were submitted by the bands and artists... and a handful of projects were not.
In the past I never cared much... since I always felt like these types of things were out of my reach...
What's the point in submitting if you aren't going to win?
It costs money... I hate wasting money... and if I was to flush $50-$90 down the toilet... I'd hope the meal was worth it.
The thing is... it's not about winning... it's about giving yourself (and more importantly, your music) another opportunity (and approach) to get heard... this time specifically by industry folk. You're probably looking for help still... why pass up this really easy opportunity? This is a form of networking in my opinion.
Every week I get emails from new bands/artists... and every week I get a few "We're broke!? All we need is someone to help us out! We just need to get heard!"... someone looking for a deal routine... and me being me... I'll give them a half dozen ideas to consider to help provide solutions to their problems... if I think their music is good of course.
Huge pet peeve... and a sure way to get on my "wait... why do I care?" list... is shooting down every cheap (affordable) and easy idea. While it's easy to say "no" to everything... it probably took more energy to plead your case than to actually try something.
Submitting for awards/contests/grants/etc. probably won't bring you fame and wealth... well... from my experience at least... but it will get your music past some more industry ears. If your music is good or great, people will do their homework on you. If it looks like it could be worth/making money (important), they might want to get on board... or at least pass you along to someone who might.
So... with another Juno Awards submission deadline passing... as the old saying goes...
"You miss 100% of the shots you don't take."
– Wayne Gretzky
It pairs well with this other old saying...
“Listen to your mother kids, aim low; aim so low no one will even care if you succeed.”
– Marge Simpson
Which one are you now... and which one are you going to be this time next year?
So it's been just over a week since I arrived back in Toronto. I must say, I felt pretty good until Saturday night around 10pm (I know this because I was trying to watch the Leafs/Pens game)... then I crashed pretty hard. The next couple days were mainly sleeping, eating, naps, and snacks... one of the perks to being self-employed I guess.
So I've decided to list off some stats from the trip... in honor of GTA V being released recently... a game that I will probably play 2-3 years from now when I have time... or come down with a nasty cold/flu and I find it used for $15 (delivered) on Craiglist.
Days On Tour: 23
Total Shows: 16
Shows Nailed: 13
Shows Pretty Much Nailed: 16
Drumsticks Brought: 15 pairs (Vater - Chad Smith Funk Blasters)
Drumsticks Consumed/aka Funk Blasted: 6 pairs
Total Drum Kit Damage Acquired: 17%
Cymbals Brought: 5
Cymbals Broken: 1
Times Intro Music iPod Was Forgotten But Returned By FOH: 9
Best Crowd: Quebec City (they went nuts)
Worst Crowd: Won't name names... but it was a Canadian city
Biggest Crowd: Montreal
Best Venue: Tie between First Avenue (Minneapolis) and Metropolis (Montreal)... and House Of Blues (Atlantic City)
Worst Bathroom: The Kooler (Lloydminster)
Best Bathroom: Cowboys (Calgary) - They had a bathroom attendant!
Best Stage: House Of Blues (Atlantic City)
Best Sound System: House Of Blues (Atlantic City)
Worst Sound System: Van... as in our van.
Worst Beer Spill: Atlantic City - Our Merch Table
Best Beer Spill: Atlantic City - Might have been the same girl... about 15ft away from our merch table.
Best Venue Meal: Winnipeg (buffet!)
Distance Traveled by Car/Van: 13,813 km *based on GoogleMaps City-to-City distances
Distance Traveled by Plane: 2, 716 km
Distance Traveled by Boat: 0 km
Distance Traveled by Elevator (total): 38 floors
Distance Traveled by Escalator (total): 18 diagonal meters
Distant Traveled by Foot: 16.87 km
Times Matt Declared He Is No Longer Driving Anymore: 5
Times Trailer Hitch Jack Bottomed Out: 72
Flat Tires: 1
Tires Changed: 3
Times GPS Blamed: 37
Times GPS Blamed In Pennsylvania/New Jersey: 31
Time Spent in Hotels (Avg): 8 hrs
Longest Time Spent in a Hotel: Coquitlam 36 hrs
Shortest Time Spent in a Hotel: Calgary (Tim's House) 3.5 hrs
Best Hotel: River Rock Casino - Coquitlam
Worst Hotel: Days Inn - Place we stopped after Youngstown, ON (Day 14)
Age Of Days 'Snoretallica' Concerts Attended After Posting Blog at 3am: 3
Best Gym: Holiday Inn Express (Montreal)
Worst Gym: McDonalds (PlayPlace)
Trips to McDonalds: 12
McDondalds consumed per day: 0.52
Trips to McDonalds with the sole purpose of using WiFi: 6
Times Concerned I Might Never Have A Proper Bowel Movement Ever Again... No Reason In Particular: 14
Buffets Found: 3
Trips to Buffets: 7
Water Consumed: 42L
Red Bull Consumed: 3 cans
Chocolate Milk Consumed: 7.5L
Alcohol Beverages Consumed: 2
Salads Consumed: 4
Bananas Eaten: 5
Apples Eaten: 7
Times Ordered As Alias 'Norm': 1
Instant Oatmeal Packets Opened and Consumed: 14
Showers Taken: 19
Showers Taken per Day: 0.82
Times Teeth Brushed: 41
Times Shaved: 6
Laundry Trips: 2
Loads of Laundry: 4
Times I Changed Toilet Paper Rolls After Finding Whoever Was In There Before Me Didn't Think It Was Necessary And/Or Might Not Of Known How To Do It: 5
Times Hit Head Off Roof Of Trailer: 9
"All Nighter's" Pulled: 2
Times Slept On Floor: 4 (2 hotels, 2 venue)
Random Books Acquired From People At Hotels: 1
Stairwell Skype Dates: 2
Tour Completion: 100%
It was a great time overall... and I'm not ashamed to admit it's the biggest tour I've ever been a part of. Most of the others I'd done have been around 2 weeks, but there is a difference for sure with the extra week. As soon as you do laundry, your mindset changes from being on a trip to actually traveling. Speaking of... one of the things I'd do differently next time is not bring any white shirts/clothes... simply because it's a separate load of laundry to deal with... if you care about that kinda stuff... and it's definitely worth bringing a small thing of detergent or picking one up along the way.
Thanks to everyone who read along during the trip. The comments, feedback, and significant increase in site traffic really helped keep me motivated at 2am.
As of right now, we're waiting on more dates... figures crossed we can get a single spinning in the US and it leads to a lot more touring next year. We're all ready to go!
P.S. In case you were wondering... yes... a lot was left out. :-)
P.S.S. I was planning on posting this yesterday... but it was Halloween... and I maybe have been full of chocolate.
Mike Langford - Official Blog
Being on both sides of the glass, I get the chance to wear many hats in the music industry. This is a place to share my thoughts, views, predictions, rants, stories and news!