Frequently Asked Questions
As a singer-songwriter, I meet a lot of people while I’m out traveling and performing. It is so awesome to get to meet people from all different walks of life. What’s interesting is that out of all the different folks I meet, every one asks me some of the same questions. I’ve gotten so good at answering the questions, I end up reciting my answers automatically without giving it a second thought. Most companies have these questions posted on their site, I thought it would be fun to post a blog about my Frequently Asked Questions. Here they are:
Are you signed? Looking to get signed?
No. No. and No. If I happen to run across a record deal, I wouldn’t ignore it but I’m also not trying to break the label’s door down either. I’m enjoying being independent and I’m enjoying my freedom. Getting signed is not the end all of being an artist. Artists and Record Labels break up all the time. There’s a reason for that. It’s not all peaches and cream. Read why I’m not trying to get a record deal here. Also, don’t take my word for it. Check out what someone else had to say about it here.
Can you perform at my event in exchange for exposure or a free vendor spot?
I can, but I’d rather not. I’m fortunate enough to be able to do music full-time and to earn a living. So that means, I’ve got to cover costs and make a profit every time I go to perform. When someone asks me to perform in exchange for exposure, I first have to determine if it’s worth my time. If my payment is exposure, I have to ask if the exposure is an equal value in terms of return on my investment of time in comparison to what I would charge. Is it worth my while? Typically it isn’t. So then I have to ask do I want to help this person or cause? I do like to give back to my community and do free performances for people and causes that I believe in. However, I can’t say yes every time.
Are you going to try out for (insert popular singing competition TV show here)?
No. Pretty much for the same reasons as my answer above. A TV show does not mean success. After your TV appearance, you are still left with the same needs you had before but now you’ve got a shady contract to weed through. There’s a lot of stuff they don’t tell you that goes on behind the scenes. Producers tend to fake things and skew reality to fit whatever story they are trying to write. You have no control over the way you are portrayed on the show. They don’t really care about your music. It’s not about the music for them, it’s about advertising dollars from commercials and viewers.
Do you still get nervous on stage?
Yes. I get nervous every time. Some times more than others depending on who’s in the audience and how big or small the event is. I also get nervous around other musicians thinking that I’m inadequate and things of that nature. I remember one time I had a performance in Nashville at a coffee shop. People came specifically to see me perform. There was an artist performing before me, so I was sitting in the dining area and several people walked up to me saying that they are looking forward to seeing me, they saw my posters and came for me. I thanked them for coming, but deep down I prayed that I wouldn’t disappoint them. I was scared they had come all that way and that maybe I wasn’t good enough. I was intimidated and nervous. It happens from time to time.
What else do you do besides music? (In other words, “Do you have a real job?”)
I’m a full-time singer-songwriter. But this business is very very unstable. So I do have revenue streams which is something I recommend to anybody. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. I’m a freelance graphic designer and I also do business coaching for aspiring artists, and some other web-based things. My real job is music, and I’ve got a lot of side gigs to supplement that income.
There are also what I call standard issue questions that every one seems to ask without fail:
How long have you been performing?
I’ve been performing all my life. I can remember back when I was in grade school I was singing in my church choir. I sung solos, recited Bible Stories, danced, and participated in performances. I’ve always been a performer. I never could seem to stay away from a stage. I think I was born for this.
But, I’ll tell you something very ironic - I am very shy and introverted. I get nervous being in the limelight, I get nervous at parties with lots of people. Also, I tend to be hypersensitive to other people’s emotions and energies so it’s very taxing for me to be in large crowds because my spirit is constantly processing other people’s energy. Most artists have this hypersensitivity and that’s how they are able to make their art so compelling. You ever wonder why a song or a painting touches you so deeply? It’s because that artist was able to tap into a collective emotion and integrate it into their art. After all this time, I’m just now coming to the realization that my sensitivity is a gift and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Where have you performed?
I’ve performed all over the eastern half of the United States and even in Belize! Right now, my home base is Memphis, Tennessee although I do plan on moving down to Texas pretty soon. I’ve toured in places like New York, Florida, DC, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, Georgia, and many more states. I’ve performed at auditoriums, schools, listening rooms, coffee shops, theaters, private residences, backyards, parties, and art galleries.
I love doing what I do. It brings me joy and I’ve seen it bring joy to others. I’m grateful for the opportunity to do this and I hope to keep doing it for a long time to come. Thank you for reading and let me know if you have any other questions! :)