4 Tips for Designing and Organizing Your Home Studio

4 Tips for Designing and Organizing Your Home Studio

Are you ready to embark on your music business? Well, the first step to any successful career is to find a place to work. This place should inspire you, keep you focused, and provide all the functionalities you require to complete your job.

Whether you’re looking to become the next big thing, or looking to find the next big recording artist, here are some tips to organizing the perfect home music studio.

1. Set Up Your Room

Many people like to organize their gear in a circular format; however, this hinders the spread of sound. Instead, you could opt for a hybrid recording setup. Your desk will be at the front of the room, with two layers of equipment in front of it.

In the second layer, you should have some kind of remote that allows you to record or hit play/pause from anywhere in the room. This remote can even be your iPad, installed with an app that controls all your gear.

2. Tune Your Room

You need to make sure your room is equipped to produce good playback. It is important that what you’re hearing from the speakers is what the rest of the world will ultimately hear.

So, you need to minimize any echoes in your room. It might require some investment, but it will be good for your career in the long run. You can hang some Auralex panels, bass traps, and a ceiling diffusor in the room to reduce any echo and vibrations.

3. Organize Your Desk

The most important rule to follow when setting up your room is to make sure your desk is distraction-free. You should only keep what you need on your desk, and put everything within an arm’s distance of your chair.

Another tip is to place a big desk calendar right in front of your chair. This will keep you organized, and with it right in front of you, you’ll never miss a task or appointment.

4. Label Your Cables

Your studio will no doubt have loads of cables, and at times it can get confusing. A simple solution is to label them. You can use a label maker, or a cheaper solution is to color code the tips with fingernail polish. This simple solution will help keep your cable mess contained.

Conclusion

Starting a music career is both hard and scary. There are many unknowns, but the first step is to design and organize your office. At least you’ll have one unknown solved, and you’ll be able to tackle everything else, one step at a time.

David Andrew Wiebe Releases New Single, “Your Eyes Give It Away”

David Andrew Wiebe Releases New Single, “Your Eyes Give It Away”

It’s been a while since we’ve heard from David Andrew Wiebe the artist.

His last release was at the end of March.

Evidently, Wiebe has been caught up in a whirlwind of work, and his personal life has also been shaken up.

Recording for “Your Eyes Give It Away” was already in motion in June. But it still took Wiebe the better part of July to finish it up and get it out into the world. He wasn’t even sure he could sit still long enough to get this single done.

We caught up with Wiebe and asked him to share what this new song is all about and how his journey inspired this work.

Why did you decide to record “Your Eyes Give It Away” specifically?

Though I’m not one to sit down and write dozens of songs these days, occasionally the events in my life will inspire me to go to work on a song that expresses the deepness of my emotions.

I don’t know if “Your Eyes Give It Away” is a special song, but it is uniquely me. It sounds like a song I would write. And, it was true to my feelings at the time.

I could have recorded it as a simple acoustic song, and that’s something I may still do. But I knew it could also work as a soft rock tune. A friend of mine said it sounded like “Hall & Oates & Wiebe”, which I think is a compliment.

I had been working on a few more demos leading up to the release of “Your Eyes…” but as is often the case with music I publish, this song came together relatively quickly. That motivates me and keeps me focused. When a song is too frustrating or time-consuming to record, I will usually scrap it or put it on the backburner.

Also, my last single, “Waves”, was an instrumental. I felt it important that people hear my voice again with my latest release.

What is “Your Eyes Give It Away” about?

There’s only so much I can say without revealing too much personal information, but I will share what I can.

The song is essentially about adult infatuation. Even as an adult, we can become intensely attracted to people unexpectedly. Those feelings can quickly take over our lives, and that can be scary.

Infatuation is uncertain, and I think “Your Eyes…” addresses this. When we like someone that much, we hope it turns out okay. But there are no guarantees, especially where two people are involved. You can’t control what the other person does.

You might think you know what the other person is thinking, but you can’t always know that, no matter how well you think you know that person.

“Your Eyes…” primarily expresses the joy and elation that can come from being drawn to someone, but also the fear of not knowing what’s going to happen next.

You’ve been shaken in your personal and professional life. What happened?

I’ve shared a little bit about this on the blog and the podcast.

While spending a couple of weeks in Okotoks in June, I found myself working until 10, 11, and even 12 at night. I only got up to make meals, go to the bathroom, go to meetings, or take the dog out for a walk. I barely had any time to wind down before going to bed. Then I would just start the cycle all over.

This had gone on for entirely too long, and I was beginning to question this lifestyle. Was I getting any further ahead? Was I taking time to enjoy myself? When I would be relieved from this crazy schedule?

Knowing me, I probably would not have done anything about it. I would have just kept on keeping on, left to my own devices. But that’s when a friend interrupted and asked me if I wanted to go kayaking. I thought to myself, “what a novel idea.”

And that was the beginning of a different kind of summer. I’ve been quite restless, and I’ve been walking and thinking a lot, but I’ve also developed a bit of a social life, and I think that has been positive.

How is “Your Eyes Give It Away” different from previous releases?

Well, I don’t think it would be different if my Back on Solid Ground material was out there. Unfortunately, that project didn’t exactly turn out, so people have only heard those songs in a live context.

Back on Solid Ground represents some of the gentlest material I’ve ever written. And, my writing process for that type of music – songs about love and heartbreak – tends to remain the same.

So, there was nothing like “Your Eyes…” on Shipwrecked… or on any other single I’ve put out to date. You could call it “soft rock” or even a “ballad”, but I think listeners will be treated to something a little different from my previous material if they give this song a try.

What gear did you use to record the single?

Here’s what I used to record “Your Eyes…”:

Where can people find “Your Eyes Give It Away”?

All the usual places – Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, and so forth. I hope you’ll take a listen, and if you enjoy it, please leave a comment below.

053 – 5 Monetization Opportunities for Blogging Musicians

053 – 5 Monetization Opportunities for Blogging Musicians

Would you consider yourself a blogging musician?

Did you know that there are many ways to make money from your blog?

In this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast, I explore five opportunities you can take advantage of as a blogging musician.

Podcast Highlights:

  • 00:14 – 5 monetization opportunities for blogging musicians
  • 00:20 – Is blogging something you should be doing?
  • 00:44 – The benefits of blogging
  • 00:53 – What kind of content should you share on your blog?
  • 01:38 – Revenue-generating opportunities
  • 01:46 – #1: Advertising
  • 02:19 – #2: Affiliate marketing
  • 03:04 – #3: Selling digital products
  • 03:41 – #4: Physical products and merchandise
  • 03:59 – #5: Lessons
  • 04:14 – There are more ways you can make money with your blog

Transcription:

Thanks for joining me. Today, I wanted to look at five monetization opportunities for blogging musicians. Many musicians ask: Is blogging something they should be doing? To me, that mostly comes down to whether you think you can sustain it over the long haul. That means committing to a consistent schedule and publishing on a predictable basis – weekly, monthly. I don’t think you would want to do it much less than that. But you have to get into a bit of a routine and rhythm and that can be somewhat challenging.

You won’t get anything from your blogging efforts if you don’t keep it up and put in the effort necessary. But if you choose to blog, you may be able to tap into certain opportunities others simply cannot. That may include opportunities to make more money from your music career. Many musicians ask what sort of content should they be publishing to their blog. I think that’s a separate discussion for another time, and there are many possibilities here but I’ll just throw out a few so you can get an idea of what to post.

You won't get anything from your blogging efforts if you don't keep at it! Click To Tweet

You can share updates for your fans, tour diaries, reviews of various products or venues, and anything local. It’s much easier for you to connect with people that are in your locality as opposed to those who are further away, which means if you talk about their products, their services, their businesses, or any other effort they might be involved in, it gives them a chance to share their message and spread what they are doing with others. Most people are happy to get that kind of coverage and even share it with their friends and perhaps reciprocate in some way.

Let’s get into these opportunities, and just so you know you can take advantage of some of them even if you aren’t a blogging musician.

Number one is advertising. I think the easiest route most people can take is to sign up for Google AdWords and begin placing ads on their website. It can be very difficult to make money with ads. It usually takes a lot of time and effort. You also need a significant amount of traffic to your website, or else you won’t see much traction with them.

But if you’re blogging regularly, that means you should be attracting regular traffic to your blog, especially over time. Maybe not immediately, but as your archive begins to build up, you will see more people coming to your website, which means, over time, the advertising monetization opportunity grows.

Blogging regularly will help you attract more traffic to your website. Click To Tweet

Number two is affiliate marketing. If there are specific products that you can recommend to others, then you can earn a commission on them. I talked about affiliate marketing in an earlier episode, so I want to point you to that one as well, but I think the easiest way to get started here is to sign up with Amazon Associates, since they sell just about every product under the sun.

Once you’re signed up you’ll be able to search for specific products and the link code that you need to use to promote those products through your website. Just like with advertising, you may not see a ton of traction with affiliate marketing early on. It’s only as your traffic grows and you build trust with your audience that you will begin to see people purchasing and then earn some commissions on those products. It can be a lucrative opportunit,y but getting to that point is difficult so I wouldn’t count on it.

Number three is selling digital products such as eBooks. One of my favorite ways to do this is through a website called Gumroad. Setting up an account with Gumroad is essentially free. Selling your PDF documents, or videos, or audio files, through Gumroad is very easy.

You may have secret interviews or acoustic covers or videos that haven’t been released. You may have footage that nobody has seen yet, and these are kind of extras that your fans could be interested in. So, if you have a merchandise and physical products already, it’s possible that your fans would also appreciate some kind of digital product that they can purchase from you as well.

Speaking of physical products and merchandise, that’s number four. Whether it’s CDs, T-shirts, pins, stickers, sheet music, or books, if you haven’t monetized your website in this way, you are definitely missing out. These days you can set up an online store relatively easily whether it’s with a WordPress plugin (such as WooCommerce) or Shopify or something else.

Number five is lessons. You may be able to offer some kind of music lessons through your site such as guitar, bass, drums, or vocals if you are particularly skilled in any of these areas. You can potentially do all the work from home because you could offer Skype lessons.

For this podcast episode, I picked five examples of different things you can do to monetize your blog, but there are so many other ways to go about it. I just thought these were the most accessible and probably some of the easiest to wrap your head around.

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TQP 027: The Message of Symmetry Part II

The Question PodcastThe word “symmetry” leads to questions about meaning, like when we encounter words like “democracy” or “love”. The word symmetry basically means “agreement in dimensions, proportions, and arrangement”.

Things that strike us as being symmetrical definitely seem to fit this criteria. We assume that measuring the dimensions, proportions, and the arrangement of something will determine if it’s symmetrical or not.

But in practice, the ancient Greeks viewed the meaning of “symmetria” in an expanded form, beyond mere mathematical measurements.

Fourth century Greek sculptor Polykleitos developed a revolutionary theory about the relationship between the mathematical expression and the dimensions of symmetry, and the dynamic movements of the human body.

His sculptures of young Greek athletes were studies of the interplay of detailing dimension with balance and rhythm. He called this interplay “symmetry”.

The concept of symmetry changed our perspective forever, paved the way for the sublime works of Michelangelo, Da Vinci, Rodin, and countless others.

From the very beginning, symmetry was not just a calculation. “symmetria” was, as the definition says, and agreement, a relationship.

In our modern and highly technological age, where we seek to measure everything, we might do well to remember that “symmetria” isn’t just a number.

In this episode of The Question podcast, you will hear highlights from Frederick Tamagi’s presentation on “The Message of Symmetry”, as well as the music of David Andrew Wiebe.

Thank you for listening!

What questions will you be taking with you after listening to this episode?

We encourage you to connect with us via social media:

TQP 026: The Message of Symmetry Part I

The Question PodcastWe live in a complicated world. We live complicated lives within a complicated human landscape. Our complicated lives are made more complicated by the complicated biological, ecological, zoological, psychological, socio-economical, political, technological, and cosmological realities we interact with every day.

“Interact” may be too kind of a word to use in many of these cases. So often, too often, we don’t really interact. We’re more likely to react to the overwhelming realities that surround and often dominate us.

For complicated people like us, reacting is often the least complicated thing we’ll ever do. Reacting doesn’t make us simple, except perhaps for the simple conclusion we often reach as we react to the overwhelming reality – that complicated equals chaos.

By definition, chaos makes no sense. We are persuaded, even conditioned, to believe that our inability to make sense of these massive complicated realities renders the whole hot mess an expression of massive chaos.

Of course, if it is chaos, it’s probably also massively random as well. The most recent and fashionable new meme for this chaos is called the Law of Unintended Consequences. Does it really seem sensible, beyond our desire to appear intellectual, philosophical, or even spiritual, that the gentle beating of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil can set off a catastrophic tornado in Texas? That feels like an unintended consequence, which could only be verified if you were able to ask the butterfly its intention.

In this episode of The Question podcast, you will hear highlights from Frederick Tamagi’s presentation on “The Message of Symmetry”, as well as the music of David Andrew Wiebe.

Thank you for listening!

What questions will you be taking with you after listening to this episode?

We encourage you to connect with us via social media: