Happy One Year Anniversary to “Un-Block The Music”! Hope you like my new look! More changes to come! Boy, have I learned a lot! I learned that I still love chasing a story, and meeting new people and interviewing and writing. I learned that my initial premise of “unblocking” all music is really valid. I interviewed Take 6 and I interviewed Concrete Dream! I also interviewed the Brummies and wrote lots of theatre stories; all different genres and all different types of music!
What has been interesting is that many of the artists I interviewed at Billboard in the rock/pop genre are finding their way to Broadway, aka, Cyndi Lauper and Bryan Adams. That goes for music producers too, aka. Frank Filipetti (Foreigner & “Anastasia”), Elliot Scheiner (Steely Dan & “Once On This Island”). I also learned that young artists are very interested in Broadway thanks to Lin Manuel Miranda (Hamilton), Duncan Sheik (“Spring Awakening,” “Alice By Heart”) and the new sensation, “Be More Chill.” When I attended “Be More Chill”, the audience was filled with teenage boys! That did my heart good. They are “un-blocking” the music! “Chill” made its way to Broadway by creating an internet sensation. Read my interviews with Producer, Jennifer Ashley Tepper and music writer Joe Iconis.
Of course, the home studio continues to overtake the large recording studios, but I also learned that studios like BerkleeNYC (formerly the Powerstation), are being reinvented. And, once again…theater is bringing about change. The Broadway incarnation of “Frozen,” for example, was recorded there. Not a big deal you say? Well, they took over several of the rooms and recorded it all live, every singer there at the same time! Can’t wait to see that upgraded studio when it reopens, hopefully later this year.
I also learned that mid-size studios like Raw Recording still exist are still a fabulous place to record live with other musicians. J.C. Santalis invited me to
So, now that I have a year under my belt, you may ask, what’s in store for “Un-Block The Music”? First off, I will be introducing a redesign. Hopefully, it will look better and be easier to read. The categories will change a little. Some will drop off or become more concentrated. I will most definitely be adding an Education/Training component. I wrote for In Tune Monthly for a lot of years, and I have a lot of teacher contacts at high schools and higher educational institutions. HOWEVER, there are a lot of outside training programs that deserve highlighting. Two stories I wrote in this past year highlighting Broadway Workshop and Random Farms Kids Theater, received a lot of positive feedback. In the face of school budget cuts, music education is shrinking, so the importance of programs outside the traditional is increasing.
In terms of higher education, I had an interesting discussion with Montgomery College in Maryland about their new studio. Articles about new programs is something readers have shown an interest in reading.
“Un-Block The Music” is also interested in watching how musicals develop. Case in point, “Emergency, the Musical.” What’s next for them after receiving a $10,000 grant from Tony Winner, Ken Davenport’s Inner Circle. What about musicals that are off-Broadway, or those that are still in workshop stage? How do you find a theater? What about a theater like Schoolhouse in a suburb of New York City? They are an equity theater that hosts plays and concerts; certainly, a nearby option for performers. It’s right next to a Metro North train stop with trains traveling from Grand Central Station.
While going into this, of course I knew that social media would be key to my success, but I didn’t realize I had to learn every platform! While, I gain a few followers every week, I get more traction on Instagram! I learned that I had better learn social media otherwise no one will ever read my stories! I learned that different age groups look at different platforms so I had better learn them all! Still making progress there! Google Analytics helps! And thanks to Ruth Morrison at Squintmore LLC for helping me wade through it all!
I can ramble on and on, but I rather the stories speak for themselves. And, I would rather hear from you about stories you want to read. Or, if YOU are a story. Contact me here, or through my email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Un-Block The Music” wants to thank you for reading and following! Looking forward to Year 2! Hope you are as well!