It annoys me that Amanda Palmer is held up as being this God of independent musicians because she’s independent and successful. She’s successful because of the existing audience she has, which was built up over the years she spent with a record label. Never mind the friends and contacts she made during that time. I mean fair play to her, she’s obviously worked hard and done well, but it’s hardly applicable to an indie musician starting out with nothing.
You have to hand it to American politics, they do make it easy on the electorate. Like do you want this guy who’s pretty sound, or do you want this guy who is the incarnation of pure evil? It’s up to you.
A lot of really unbelievably popular shit. So I think it’s important to show support to people who are actually talented and creating good things. So here are a couple.
Jimmy is going for King of the Web - go here and hit the vote button 10 times (per day if you can remember!) Jimmy’s one of my oldest youtube friends and deserves to be making a living off his stuff because it’s consistently brilliant.
Myles has probably been my favourite youtuber over the last couple of years. Except maybe Ze Frank but he doesn’t count because he’s Ze Fucking Frank. You don’t have to vote for Myles in anything, just suggesting you go check him out. He makes videos like people used to back in the early days of youtube! I don’t know why but this seems rare lately. I think a lot of people realised that being totally vapid and inane is easier and gets you more views than being charming and creative so they go for that style instead. Still, makes you appreciate those who aim higher.
Who do you think is great? You’ve got a blog, give them a shout out!
As does everyone else’s.
I like Obama as much as the next guy, but even David “Total Cunt” Cameron openly supports gay marriage. To not do so you’d have to be more of a cunt than David Cameron, who, as his nickname suggests, is a total cunt.
So yeah, it’s good that he’s declared his support, but it’s like the minimum amount of good that I expected of you Barack, cos you’re a cool guy.
I know the situations are different on either side of the Atlantic, but really wherever you are, there’s no excuse for being more of a cunt than David Cameron.
Anonymous asked: What is your opinion on 'The Voice'?
I’ve never watched it. I’m not a fan of those kind of talent shows in general and while it’s better to single out someone’s singing voice over their looks and whatever else, to my mind it’s still very one dimensional. I’d rather watch a show where people played songs they’d written and everything was performed live.
Also from what I have seen (on adverts and clips on other shows) they seem to be getting the same sort of singers as all the other Saturday night tv shows… Basically it’s all about power and hitting notes. As long as you can belt out a chorus in tune and really fucking loud, then you’re considered good. Like I saw this one clip of The Voice where two contestants were doing a duet but it was like a battle with each other, and they were just screaming trying to out-loud one another and it was fucking horrible to listen to. For me voices should be judged on a lot more than that - personality, subtlety, emotion, distinctiveness, etc. etc.
I mean imagine if Conor Oberst went on X Factor! He wouldn’t get passed the producers! And I’d be there (for some reason) sat in the corner going ‘this guy is literally better than everyone that’s ever been on your show put together! What’s wrong with you?!’ So yeah I don’t watch them.
Anonymous asked: I've been wanting to get into playing music professionally for years, but I've never really known where to start and I was wondering if you could give me some advice. I've been missing you on the ol' YouTube! I hope there's some more stuff coming soon x
There are a lot of ways to be a professional musician, so it’s hard to know what you’re asking. Also in my experience, there isn’t really one accepted path that people go down - everyone seems to forge their own way and you end up with a career that is unique to you. You might make a living from a mixture of song writing, teaching guitar, playing bass for a mate’s band, session musician work, organising gigs, designing t-shirts, making videos… Another professional musician might make a living without doing any of these things.
So I guess some all round starting out advice would be to get involved. Write songs, record music, offer to help with friends’ stuff, take on projects… Over time you’ll see what works for you and what doesn’t and you can start to concentrate on the things you like.
And re: the ol’ YouTube - three videos in three days over here, get on it!
Crossing over from twitter here because I couldn’t fit this in a tweet. Daniel was saying that he was trying to write his first original song, and implied that he might still be trying this in five years! Asked if I had any advice.
So first off I guess I would say don’t try to write one song. Instead write ten.
That sounds harder, but what I’m saying is when I started out, I was trying to write one song and I wanted it to be perfect, so every time I got halfway through something and it wasn’t perfect, I’d give up and throw it away. That’s obviously a sure-fire way to never complete a song. Aiming to write lots of songs is a good way to not get hung up on the first one being perfect, and perfection is not what you’re looking for here. Ignoring the absolute futility of aiming for perfection in an any artform ever, the most important thing when you start writing is to finish something. If it’s rubbish, that’s fine - it’s your first song, it’s supposed to be rubbish! Now it’s done move on and write another, slightly better one. Repeat that, a lot. One day you’ll realise they’ve stopped being rubbish.
If you’re anything like me, once you get into a routine, you’ll find it much easier to get through songs. I was writing for about ten years before I have enough songs to fill my first album, the songs for my latest took four months, because I made sure I wrote a song a week for those four months. Easy!*
Hope that helps, good luck!
*I’ve written about two songs since Winter came out. I’m a massive hypocrite and I need to take my own advice.