There is something I learned the hard way on this beautiful and sometimes tumultuous journey and I thought I’d share it. Not to force it, but maybe just leave it on here as a reminder to help those that might have forgotten this as I did and do in the rush. It is my opinion that the most important asset you have on this earth, apart from the spirit and soul that powers you, is that body it has to dwell in. Some times as musicians, vocalist, writers, reporters, photographers, designers, etc, we get so in the moment that we get lost in it, lost in our passion and drive, and we stay up working, don’t eat right or at the right times, don’t exercise right and we completely beat up the very thing that’s housing all of our creative energy. The world and human consciousness needs to hear and see what we have to say, sing, play, write, draw and show them. That’s why we were put on this earth with the passion and the drive and vision to create something out of nothing while having the courage to take the blows we do as artistic and creative people. Lets make sure we don’t cut our message short by not taking care of ourselves. Mind, BODY, spirit, and soul. Let them all be as strong as the gift and message you were sent here to deliver.
Michael "Major Keyz" Walker Jr.
EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU ENTER THE STUDIO PT 1.
By Michael “Major Keyz” Walker
ARE YOU READY TO PAY A STUDIO TO RECORD YOU?
I can’t recall how many times I’ve received the call from a panicked, almost in tears recording artist saying phrases like “Hey I just got my music back from the studio, it doesn’t sound right. You got to help me.” Or “I just went over my budget and I’m not even half way through my song. You got to help me!” Or “The engineer doesn’t know what he’s doing. You got to help me!” or “The studio didn’t have the equipment I needed but I already paid please help me get my money back!” Or “how does my song sound?” they’ll ask and I’ll listen of course and politely reply it sounds like you had a karaoke session in the bathtub using alarm clock speakers as your sonic guide. So after having many of these encounters, I decided I had to do something to save my ears, to save young recording artists careers, and to save recording artists valuable money! This is my guide you can use to make sure you are really ready to step foot into a professional studio. So the question is………
What should you do to make sure you are ready to pay a studio to record you?
Find out more and read this whole chapter by connecting with me on my facebook @ www.Facebook.com/major.keyz
An artist I thought I was cool with deleted me recently so I'm writing this to clarify my stance on "No" and "Yes" a bit. Please understand that I can not take on every project due to time, nor is every artists the best for what I'm trying to do and I recognize that I might not be the best for every artist as well. I only try to work with people I can make a positive impact on musically, with numbers, and those that can challenge and grow me. If I can't pick up your project, use your songs, produce, or market you, I would be cheating myself and you to say I could, therefore I have no problem saying no. I value my creditability which is why I only agree to songs and projects that I know I can make better than they would be should I had not taken on the project. I only say yes to songs that I can bring the honest emotion the singer or artists is trying to get out through to the listener or that I can turn into musical hits (commercial success is based on your label, promotion team, performances, etc) or projects I have enough time to complete by the deadline set by the artists. My word keeps it's value like that. So if I say no to your track or production inquiry, it's not personal. You music is personal, I know, but you have to keep the business and numbers outside of that or else you'll lose the music and business judgment. I mean this from the bottom of my heart with respect to all. I cheer for everybody with a dream that goes for it.
Just as citizens of a nation must be educated about their rights to ensure that they are protected and upheld, so too must those who compose words and music know the rights that support their own acts of creation. Without these rights, which directly emanate from the U.S. Constitution, many who dream of focusing their talents and energies on music creation would be economically unable to do so - an outcome that would diminish artistic expression today and for future generations. At this time, when so many forces are seeking to diminish copyright protections and devalue artistic expression, this Bill of Rights for Songwriters and Composers looks to clarify the entitlements that every music creator enjoys. 1. We have the right to be compensated for the use of our creative works, and share in the revenues that they generate. 2. We have the right to license our works and control the ways in which they are used. 3. We have the right to withhold permission for uses of our works on artistic, economic or philosophical grounds. 4. We have the right to protect our creative works to the fullest extent of the law from all forms of piracy, theft and unauthorized use, which deprive us of our right to earn a living based on our creativity. 5. We have the right to choose when and where our creative works may be used for free. 6. We have the right to develop, document and distribute our works through new media channels - while retaining the right to a share in all associated profits. 7. We have the right to choose the organizations we want to represent us and to join our voices together to protect our rights and negotiate for the value of our music. 8. We have the right to earn compensation from all types of "performances," including direct, live renditions as well as indirect recordings, broadcasts, digital streams and more. 9. We have the right to decline participation in business models that require us to relinquish all or part of our creative rights - or which do not respect our right to be compensated for our work. 10. We have the right to advocate for strong laws protecting our creative works, and demand that our government vigorously uphold and protect our rights. Please Sign the Petition At http://www.ascap.com/rights/ to stand with fellow Songwriters and Composers to make sure we never lose the rights we have fought so hard to obtain. Major Keyz 832-272-8630
Singers, Songwriters? Want Something for free? Beats?!!! This is a little long but will be one of the most valuable things you will read in your music career!! When I first wanted to make beats and get into production, I went to Guitar Center wide eyed looking around, wondering what was going to be that magic instrument and program that was going to yield me profit. See at the time I had just got done serving in the military and had very little money but I had confidence in my talents and a belief that I would hustle hard enough at my craft that whatever I bought I would see profit from in little time. So I with pride walked up to the counter and purchased 300$ studio monitors, a 500$ interface, a $359 LCD, a Keyboard (midi) $400, and a laptop 1400$ and PC 500$, that was it, pretty much all the money I had at the time. Well I'm glad I spent it because it made me hungry to use what I bought and spent my hard earned money on to make the money back. It made me not waste time and get busy from the moment I got home. It was an investment in myself. It solidified my dedication to music. Sadly when I talk to a lot of singers they don't have that kind of confidence in themselves and motivation, they want something for free so if they fail or give up there's no cost involved. If they decide not to push it, or write sub par song, if they decide to not it get mixed and mastered right, if they decide it's too hard they have no cost risk involved. Great people always learn you should make it harder to quit not easier. The more incentive you give yourself to go hard and keep going the more you will. I'm not a fan of things in music being for free and here's the issue with that if you're not willing to invest in yourself and have enough gumption to make it happen money wise on a small scale, (purchasing beats, getting your demo sounding right, promotions) why would a producer or label trust you with free beats or money to record an album or even to use their brand name. It shows in a way you don't value your craft enough to put money up front for yourself. Why would I or any producer or label believe, if we gave you a beat for free, you would invest in proper recording which cost money, or promotions which cost money, or CD pressing which cost money, or doing shows which cost money, beats will be the cheapest of those things and if you can't get through me or are trying to short cut the system I know you will fail at the others, therefore my songs will end up going nowhere. That's why I will shelf a song before giving it out for free because it shows that the person demanding it doesn't value the product, does not value music having a monetary value, doesn't see the music business as a business, or won't use the beat properly to make the money they weren't willing to spend back. If you'll invest in new shoes, fast food, and clubbing over music you don't have the kind of respect for music that will make you great! The singers and rappers of the world need to snap out of it and start believing in themselves and stop making it easy for them to fail. Anybody will quit if they know they haven't spent anything on staying in the game. I've had times where I wanted to quit in the past, but I looked around and saw the thousands of dollars I invested in myself and it made me go harder! It made me earn that money back and when I did, I didn't rest on what I had or had done, I went and got better stuff to stay current, so I got more motivated. Artists used to think like this. Producers still do. Don't short change yourself by trying to cut corners, or being cheap. I'm affordable enough just ask around. Believe in yourself, believe in your talent, believe you are worth investing in yourself and soon others will too. Plain and simple If you don't have the confidence to spend money to help your own career, it shows that you don't have confidence or drive you will need make any!! Major Keyz