KJ is a bass player and singer-songwriter (like Sting, only taller); co-founder of Sessionville; and all too fond of sushi and Doritos®.

Do You Need A Band Member Or "Hired Gun"?


There are times when the best thing for your band is a solid, long term commitment from a player who wants to pitch in, sleep in the van and get paid nothing. And then there are the times where it's better to have a pro on board, even if it means shelling out a couple hundred bucks for a show and a few rehearsals when the rest of the band only got a couple of free beers and barely enough cash for cab fare.

Knowing the difference is part of being a good band leader. And, the only way to do that is by taking an objective, decidedly unemotional look at the situation, summing up all the factors, and taking your very best and most intelligent guess.  read more →

Negotiating A Fair Price For Used Gear


So you finally found that thing you were looking for. It's right there within your grasp; the owner is eager to unload it and it will make the perfect addition to your studio. There's just one thing standing in your way: you're not going to pay a lot of this muffler.

Negotiating price is way less common in North America than in other parts of the world. It's assumed, when buying cardamom from a bazaar in Bangladesh, that you'll haggle a bit and come out a few taka less than the advertised price. But around these parts, folks are used to forking over whatever it says on the sticker. Most of the time that makes sense, but when it comes to used gear from an individual seller, you might just be cheating yourself out of the discount he already planned to give you.  read more →

You Answered The Ad, But Will The Band Pick You?


It's one thing to respond to a band looking for, let's say, a bass player. It's a whole other thing to actually get the gig. Chances are, a whole bunch of people replied to the flyer that band put up—especially if their music samples are good—and you're going to have to do something to differentiate yourself from the masses. 

This is an age old issue, the need to enter a saturated marketplace and define yourself—or, more to the point, your brand—from all the others. Let's face it, there are a lot of good musicians out there, and not nearly as many really great gigs. The question is, when you find a gig you want, what will you do to make sure you get it instead of the other guy? read more →

The Most Important Question To Ask When Buying A Used Guitar Online


Let's start out by assuming you're not rich. Not many musicians are. While it would be just lovely to waltz into the shop, pull a custom Paul Reed Smith off the wall and plunk down your American Express Black card to cover the full sticker price, such things are a luxury more often afforded to the One Percent. 

The alternative: pick out the perfect guitar and then go and find someone who doesn't want his anymore. It's not a pipedream, the used market for guitars is huge. But, while it's reasonable to consider a certain level of quality in an axe that just rolled off the assembly line, it's harder to predict the details of one that's been sitting in someone's spare bedroom for half a decade. The trick, then, is to ask just the right questions to ensure you're getting a quality specimen. And, while there are a million questions to ask, there's one in particular that strikes me as more important than the others: read more →

Your Pitch Needs Proofreading


Sometimes it's the little things that make all the difference in the world. This is especially true when you're communicating with an A&R person, radio programmer or anyone else inundated with pitches from hopeful musicians looking for some attention.

Think of it like showing up to a job interview dressed in an Armani suit versus a turtleneck and ducky slippers. The former speaks well of an applicant: refined, respectful and prepared. The latter says, "Eh, fuck it." The same is true of the pitch you send, whatever form it takes. Whether it's a letter, an email, a press kit or a tweet, it's not just what you say, but how you say it.  read more →

Let Google Advertise Your Gigs For You


Let me begin by stating the obvious: viewers of your website = finite; people on your email list = finite; users of Google = infinite. With that tidbit of info in mind, selling the concept of letting Google do the heavy lifting of informing the world about your shows needs little more than a soft sell.

Google's new event promotion thingy has a few options for implementation, which is good because, while some require a working knowledge of the gibberish that makes up a modern website, some don't. So let's take a look at the easy version: read more →

Train Your Brain For Better Music Promo


Endless ink has been spilled in the name of better music promo advice. Things like, how to promote your band on Twitter, using sites designed for musicians and hooking up with up publishing reps fill the web and give a cornucopia of food for thought. But not even the most sage advice can aid a musician who's not in the right head space when it comes to getting his or her name out there.

Before you post that tweet, before you design that flyer, make sure your brain is pointing your body—and your efforts—in the right direction: read more →

Welcome to Flypostr


Let me start by being upfront about something: I'm going to be cagey. I'm going to talk about Flypostr in a bunch of different ways, from a bunch of different angles without actually saying what it is. Why? Not because I'm an asshole, (though an argument could, I suppose, be made for that theory) but because the thing that Flypostr is, isn't quite done yet. 

read more →