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Key Conversations

Welcome to Key Conversations, where you can connect with the best of the music business, unlocking the secrets to exploding your music career. Presented by In The Key Of Success. Hosted by Cheryl B. Engelhardt, the conversations are between the special guest and participants of her MX4 Course - the Marketing and branding, Money-Making Mentorship Mastermind for musicians. They are singers, songwriters, composers, producers and artists just like you, asking their burning questions to each of our guest experts: record label execs, Emmy-winning composers, CEOs, music supervisors, touring artists, and MANY more!
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Feb 23, 2017

This is the first of a two piece dive into the expanse of applicable knowledge all-around DIY professional musician and entertainer Ari Herstand has to offer. From his blog, “Ari’s Take,” his musical career, his acting, all the way to his full fledged guide on How to Make It in the New Music Business this young leader in the industry offers a wealth of insight in each of the answers he gives in this episode of Key Conversations. You can expect to find well-rounded answers to questions concerning the DIY musician’s life, crowd-funding, and much more crammed into the eventful first part of our two part conversation with Ari Herstand.

 

MX4 Participants Interviewing Ari:

Caitlin Deviny
Scott Tran
April Anne
Julian Blackmore

Links Mentioned:

Blog: Ari’s Take

Book & Website: Ari Herstand .com

May 5, 2016

In part two of this very valuable interview, John Kellogg answers artists' legal questions like why is the copyright the most valuable asset in the music industry? When should I become an LLC or become an official company? What are tax benefits that we can utilize as artists? What about songwriter split sheets? Band agreements?

So much value packed into this one!

MX4 participants interviewing John:

Chrysanthe Tan, Alex WintersKasey Polk

Links Mentioned:

Take Care of Your Music Business

Volunteer Lawyers For The Arts

Harvard Recording Artist Project

Billboard Magazine

Songwriter Split Sheets: https://www.songsplits.com

www.Kellogglaw.com

 

Apr 28, 2016

 

Professor Kellogg shares his impressive story from starting performing when he was 17 years old to networking and meeting key people who helped him develop his career. He set a music career goal and achieved it. What was next? Law! 

Some great questions answered in this one- how can an indie artist on a budget get legal support? When should an artist begin to seek legal advice? 

And many more!

MX4 participants interviewing John:

Chrysanthe Tan, Alex Winters, Kasey Polk

Links Mentioned:

Take Care of Your Music Business

Volunteer Lawyers For The Arts

Harvard Recording Artist Project

Billboard Magazine

www.Kellogglaw.com

 

Apr 21, 2016

In part 2 of this extremely unique interview, composer Darren Solomon answers the questions: How do you deal with the way other people pigeon-hole you because you do a variety of things, from composing to performing? In doing so, he also tackles the importance of just making cool stuff and getting it out there. We get to hear the top 5 commercials Darren has done that people would know and the two-sentence version for success in commercial composing… OK, a bit MORE than 2 sentences.


MX4 participants interviewing Darren:

Chrysanthe Tan, Alex Winters 

 

Links Mentioned:

Darren’s “passion” project In B Flat

Darren Solomon

Apr 14, 2016

Every musician or composer has their journey toward what they consider to be success. It’s a hard fought battle to overcome all kinds of obstacles, both internal and external. Today’s conversation and Q&A demonstrates that in the story of a very successful performer and commercial composer, Darren Solomon and can translate to how you ca make the transition from a touring and performance path to more of a composition direction.

Darren got his first big break as a bass player by overhearing a conversation… not the typical way most of us get an opportunity, but he took it. The result? He wound up touring with the one and only Ray Charles for 2 years. It was a phenomenal experience that taught him a ton about the music business and the life of a traveling musician.

After his stint with Ray, Darren stepped into an opportunity presented by his dad, composing scores for low budget horror flicks. He sees it as the opportunity to develop his chops in an entirely different aspect of the music industry and can see now how it served him well as he moved toward what would eventually become his main bread and butter, writing scores for television commercials.

In this Q&A conversation Darren shares his story, gives some great advice in response to some practical questions, and inspires us all to keep making cool stuff and getting it out there. He’s convinced that it’s the hard work and passion that pay off in the end, if you don’t give up.

You’re going to enjoy this one!


MX4 participants interviewing Darren:

Chrysanthe Tan, Alex Winters 

 

Links Mentioned:

Darren’s “passion” project In B Flat

Darren Solomon

Apr 7, 2016

Bree opens up with some highlights and milestones of her music career along with what she is doing today before diving into some extremely valuable tips for musicians about workflow and focus. For the first time in Key Conversations, we hear the perspective of being a mom and a full time musician.

Listeners will also get the inside scoop of how a radio station chooses its music, and how to stand out so that your music IS chosen.

Lastly, Bree shares her reasons behind starting an independent radio station focusing on female musicians.

 

MX4 Participants Interviewing Bree:

Moldover, Kasey Polk, Lake Lady

 

Links Mentioned:

Women of Substance Radio

The Miracle Morning  

 

Music X Ray

Sonicbids

Mar 31, 2016

In the second part of this valuable interview, Cheryl and Lou share insights into how to garner more opportunities. Cheryl asks about licensing opportunities through the Reverbnation platform and what it takes to get licensed. Cheryl shares her experiences with licensing through Reverbnation and how a personal touch makes all the difference. And make sure to listen to the end where Lou shares the hidden gems of the Reverbnation platform.

Links Mentioned:

APM music library

Previous Links Mentioned:

Lou Plaia co-founder of Reverbnation

Canva

Resource Page

Mar 24, 2016

In a special one-on-one interview, Cheryl finds out about how Lou went from finance to artist development (including Kid Rock!) to full time entrepreneur, all while keeping the musician in mind. He continues to foster industry connections to create opportunities for bands. Hear the secret to NOT being a needle-in-a-haystack artist… how to get found. Lou digs into the importance of images and updating your profiles. Lou gives some insights into how to target opportunities to submit to (ps, they’re free!). How can fan engagement and targeting fans’ demographics to keep and develop fan relationships long term? Lou answers this!

Hear how Reverbnation is a hub for social media and the tools (like widgets!) you need to grow your reach.

 

Links Mentioned:

Lou Plaia co-founder of Reverbnation

Canva

Resource Page

Mar 17, 2016

Hear Suzanne's awesome story of how she got to be the Rock/Star Advocate. Hear her secrets to a super-productive day, maintaining self-care, press kit do's and don'ts, and how to dig into the business side of being an artist. Find out her TOP three books on the music industry and why, and how to make a really awesome email-list! Lastly, how to make a tiny mailing list be profitable!

 

MX4 Participants on the Interview: Blackey of Midnight Mob, Chrysanthe Tan, Alex Winters

Links Mentioned on the Interview:

The Rock/Star Advocate

Donald S. Passman - All You Need To Know About The Music Business

Andy Sernovitz - Word Of Mouth Marketing

Louis Howes - School of Greatness

Mar 10, 2016

Not only is Sean Callery an Emmy winning composer of some of our FAVORITE shows (including Homeland, 24, Elementary, Bones and Medium), he's a freaking nice guy, and shows it while diving into all things composing. Sean shares about interpersonal relationships and bringing your specific skillsets to the table, the standards of writing and presenting music within the television industry, and conducting a live orchestra. In this interview, we also cover:

• how the music industry still looks for quality work in relation to receiving awards,

• the process of writing music for screen

• having a degree for a specific music skill versus experience

• and how to get past writers block or composing frustrations

 

Questions Asked During the Interview:

What are 3 career highlights or events that have gotten you to where you are that you look back on fondly?

What are some skills as a musician that are important for a strong composer to have?

What is it like to have your original music heard with a live orchestra?

How have awards and nominations helped you out in your career and how did you get to the point of being nominated?

What is your composing process like for film or television?

Should you get a certification/degree in arranging or conducting as to earn respect within the industry?

Was or is there a Sinclavier community in LA and would you happen to know Steven Crowes?

What motivates you to keep pushing yourself as a composer when things may get difficult?

 

Links Mentioned:

Seancallery.com

 

MX4 Participants Interviewing Sean:

Kasey Polk

Charisse of Lake Lady

Moldover

 

Mar 3, 2016

Singer Express founder Andree Kaminsky discusses building your showcase page, and why a service like Singer Express can help boost your vocal career. Great for all vocalists, singers, VO artists!

Links Mentioned:

Singer Express (use "mx4free" code for 4 weeks free trial!)

MX4 Participants On The Call: Loren BlackeyScott TranChrysanthe TanAlex Winters

 
Feb 25, 2016

Singer Express founder Andree Kaminsky discusses her journey of going from singer manager to website platform host, and why a service like Singer Express can help boost your vocal career.

Links Mentioned:

Singer Express (use "mx4free" code for 4 weeks free trial!)

MX4 Participants On The Call: Loren BlackeyScott TranChrysanthe TanAlex Winters

 
Feb 18, 2016

The "When I Grow Up Coach", Michelle Ward, continues to grace the Key Conversations airwaves by sharing her perspective on why WE should have a perspective. She'll explain mindset shift, building your network and stepping out of it, and the beloved topic of QUITTING YOUR DAY JOB! 

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott TranParry Adams, Pamela AmesDebra PenberthyFavour Renae,Eddy Walda, Ethan Martin

Links Mentioned: 

Michelle Ward: The When I Grow Up Coach

Renaissance Soul Book

Ditch Your Day Job Class

Feb 11, 2016

The "When I Grow Up Coach", Michelle Ward, went from musical theater dreamer to massively successful career coach. She explains to us what a life coach does and how its different than a counselor. We then get to hear some common themes she see within her clients and ways to get past them. Lastly, we dig into goal scheduling tips and making it creative/fun!

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott TranParry Adams, Pamela AmesDebra PenberthyFavour Renae, Eddy Walda, Ethan Martin

Links Mentioned: 

Michelle Ward: The When I Grow Up Coach

Renaissance Soul Book

Ditch Your Day Job Class

Feb 4, 2016

In this second part of a VERY insightful interview, ASCAP's Etan Rosenbloom reflects on ways to introduce your music to the world, and then explains how ASCAP collects monies for your music catalogue digitally. We get into the current issues with PRO’s and digital music services and end the interview with hearing other benefits of being apart of a PRO.

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott TranParry Adams, Pamela AmesDebra Penberthy

Links Mentioned: 

www.ASCAP.com

Jan 28, 2016

Etan Rosenbloom is fighting the good fight from within ASCAP, one of the three Performing Rights Organizations in America. He tells us about interviewing artists with a difference perspective and why you, as an artist, should try to make each interview feel fresh and natural. We then dig into how technology now is allowing for a different relationship between artist and fan versus 20 years ago. Etan also provides insights into how to publicize your upcoming work and projects as an artist as well as ways to get the attention of bloggers, writers, newspapers, etc.

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott TranParry Adams, Pamela AmesDebra Penberthy

Links Mentioned: 

www.ASCAP.com

Jan 21, 2016

In this second interview with vocalist, songwriter and performer Kristin Hoffmann, we look at what it means to be diverse within the music industry, trusting your instincts when it comes to working with other musicians and other ways to create a full sound with a limited number of musicians. Kristin also enlightens us on generating and pursuing different music opportunities while balancing your fulfilling musical work and not so fulfilling musical work. 


MX4 Participants on the interview:
 Scott Tran, Debra Penberthy

Links Mentioned: 

Kristin Hoffmann's Website

Jan 14, 2016

Kristin Hoffmann, songwriter and professional singer, shares insights to her vast career of making a living creating music. We dive into out-of-the-box thinking to create a sustainable career and discuss the highs and lows of the label experience versus being indie. We also talk about something that is hard for all musicians to do: outsourcing! 


MX4 Participants on the interview:
Scott Tran, Debra Penberthy

Links Mentioned: 

Kristin Hoffmann's Website

 

And don't forget you can see Cheryl and Kristin perform live together tonight (January 14th 2016, 7:30pm at Rockwood Music Hall Stage 2 in New York City. Information at cherylbe.com.) You can hear and purchase their song "Bring The Rain" on iTunes.

Jan 7, 2016

Part two with music business songwriting expert Judy Stakee starts with discussing the importance of finding your own voice while developing your songs and how to allow your songs to dictate where you move next. We dig into the live aspect of songs- how to let an audience get to know you versus just playing a set. Judy reveals the secrets to what qualities make a successful songwriter and how to really develop your overall talent as an artist.

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott Tran, Parry Adams, Pamela Ames, Debra PenberthyFavour Renae

Links Mentioned: 

The Songwriter's Survival Guide by Judy Stakee

Judy Stakee's Website

Dec 31, 2015

Want to send your songs to music supervisors? Music industry veteran Judy Stakee gets right down to it! She'll dig into the importance of being apart of a songwriting community, reveal three avenues for what you can do once you have your own material and how to get your music to different licensing companies! Yes please!!

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott Tran, Parry Adams, Pamela Ames, Debra PenberthyFavour Renae

Links Mentioned: 

The Songwriter's Survival Guide by Judy Stakee

Judy Stakee's Website

Dec 24, 2015

Back with Dave Cool of Bandzoogle chatting about networking, its importance, and how to become great at it. Find out what “Polite Persistence” is and how it can benefit you, as well as Dave's important tips every artist should have in place as they grow their career. Finally, get the inside scoop into Bandzoogle and some of the highlights of this amazing platform!

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott Tran, Ethan Martin, Greg Foster, Favour Renae

Links Mentioned:

BandZoogle

Bands in Town

Book on networking: Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

Dec 17, 2015

Dave Cool of Bandzoogle opens up telling us about his journey from starting as a drummer for his dad's band to where he is today. We take a look at the indie music world today versus 10 years ago, and why it's more important than ever to have a strong website. We also dive into HOW to get people to your website, and how to stand out above the crowd.

MX4 Participants on the interview: Scott Tran, Ethan Martin, Greg Foster, Favour Renae

Links Mentioned:

BandZoogle

Bands in Town

Book on networking: Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

Dec 10, 2015

 

The brilliant Emmy Winning Michael Whalen discusses artistry, scheduling, balancing wearing MANY hats and, his key focus currently: the philosophy of monetization. What does powerful scheduling really mean and how can it support you in your music career?

Quotable goodness: "Performance is a product of action." - Michael Whalen

Michael talks about being a film composer and getting gigs, working with directors, and choosing the right gig for you. Growing your reputation through being authentic to what work you want do. The conversation turns to creativity in arranging, and then rounds off with Michaels current focus, monetization. It’s a new philosophy where rather than protecting copyright, the artists need to let go and let their music be heard to the masses in whatever medium possible.

MX4 Participants Interviewing: Jenna BurkeBrad Roseborough, Lauren (SenoritAwesome)

Links Mentioned:

Michael Whalen Website
Landmark Education

Dec 3, 2015

Part 2 of our discussion with Jaime begins with digging into planning and managing money for anyone starting out in their artistic endeavors. She sheds light on the risks and commodities within in the music industry. We'll cover health care, tax deductions, and managing tax payments. She parts with stressing that artistry and financial abundance are not mutually exclusive and bookkeeping - in particular Quickbooks, is a good way to keep the revenue in check.

Links Mentioned: Tier One Services

Quickbooks for Experts

MX4 Participants on Interviewing Jaime: Jenna Burke

Brad Roseborough

Megan LuRose

Nov 26, 2015

Part 1 of the interview with Jaime Campbell CPA begins with her sharing that out of a love for math and music she developed into a successful financial advisor with a sweet spot for artist’s and entrepreneurs. Jaime co-founded Tier One Services which offers support in areas of accounting, bookkeeping and Quickbooks. She talks in detail about the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and the importance of reporting income. She answers questions in regards to hobby law, retirement plans, and the 1099 form.

Links Mentioned: Tier One Services

MX4 Participants on Interviewing Jaime: Jenna Burke

Brad Roseborough

Megan LuRose

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