Vocal coach and session singer Ken Stacey has toured with Bobby Caldwell, Elton John, has worked with Michael Jackson and currently tours with Ambrosia. He chats about leaving behind law school to pursue singing full time, becoming a talent scout/first line judge on American Idol, and how vulnerability and authenticity helps performers to stand out. He also goes into detail about his “Ready 4 the World” masterclass.
Talent is not enough. It’s your human vulnerability and authenticity. It’s how you’re going to be your best self and it’s how people are going to get to know you.
It is not about being the best. You will not be able to outsing the world. You will not be able to out attractive the world. At the end of the day, if you cannot connect with people, you will not build the kind of audience and industry support that is going to be necessary to carry you through a life long, long term career.
It’s important as singers and performers that we find a sense of purpose beneath all of it.
Strive for excellence not perfection. Perfection does not exist.
Your notes don’t always have to be perfect.
Practice and perform with intention.
At any stage in your career, It is the core of vulnerability and authenticity that is going to lead you to the next path and make you stand out.
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Raffia Ford chats about her experience touring as a backup singer for Tito Jackson, competing on P Diddy’s “making his band,” how to ask for what you want, negotiating for yourself as an artist/singer, and her time studying music education at Berklee College of Music, and what lead to her opening her own music school.
A true “working” sniger in every sense of the word. Singer/rapper and CPA Tamara Bubble is killing it in the music licensing game. We chat about her journey into music, what making it means to her, and how her day job helps her focus on her music. Tamara and I met in Cathy Heller’s Access Music Licensing Course and in less than a year Tamara was already speaking on music supervisor panels, had seven of her song licensed on BET’s Hustle in Brooklyn, and synced a song on the trailer for the HULU original “Shrill.” If you want to get your music licensed in music and television, you need to hear this interview.
Laura Jane opens up about how her gig with Enrique Iglesias almost didn’t happen, the balance between being a singer for hire and being an artist, and what she learned working with the late great Teena Marie. She also discusses mentoring young artists and her upcoming workshops.
Veronica Puleo co-owner of The Replicas Music in Los Angeles discusses how she started her five star music and production agency, generates business, nurtures relationships, and what her criteria is for hiring singers and musicians. We also touch upon what is pro behavior at gigs and why your agency should have a strong contract with a client.
Gerald White is one of the most successful and in demand studio singers and vocal coaches in Los Angeles. You’ve heard his voice on Glee, Toy Story 3, The Simpsons and Avatar, just to name a few. He chats about how advice he almost didn’t follow lead to his thriving career as a session singer, his popular sight singing workshop at the SAG-AFTRA building, and his philosophy on the value of being a teacher.
Say yes to every opportunity that comes along even though it may not be the exact thing that you want to do.
The demo is worthwhile only after you’ve met the person that you need to meet. The best demo is really short and it has to be what you do the very best. Don’t stray far from from the style that you do.
Assume that the person listening to your demo is going to get through 20 or 30 seconds. They make up their mind really fast.
You have to get out and sing in every group that you can possibly sing in. You have to be seen. You have to be known. You have to be out there doing your craft.
It’s rare that someone just hires someone out of the blue. They will vet you. Are you out there hiking your craft, are you dependable, do you show up on time, are you fun to hang out with.
Vocal contractors want to know who the new talent is.
The voice is an extension of everything that’s going on in your life.
Don’t burn bridges.
You have to be wise about what you say, and how you treat people.
Genevieve Goings chats about navigating the world of children’s music, the importance of singers being able to record themselves, and having a basic understand of engineering.
Genevieve is one of the most recognizable voices in Children’s Entertainment. With over a decade as the star of Disney Junior’s “Choo Choo Soul;” an upbeat, urban music video show, Genevieve’s career has grown and is now reaching a second generation of fans. Combined views of content featuring Genevieve on Youtube has surpassed 250 Million views, and in 2017 she earned a Grammy Nomination for her work writing Children’s Music.
She has toured the US and Canada continuously over the past 13 years and has also been invited twice by First Lady Michelle Obama to read with her at the White House Easter Egg Roll in 2015 and 2016.
Felice Hernandez chats about the Empowered Singer Workshops Seriesheld in Los Angeles. The series offers a supportive environment for singers to enrich their skills with workshops like Career and the Authentic Self, Percussion for Singers, Cover Band 101, Harmony at Play, Social Media Marketing, Get Paid: Negotiations & Contracts, Movement for Singers and more.
All workshops are held at the Epiphany Space 1763 N Gower Los Angeles, CA 90028. To reserve your spot follow “Empowered Singer Workshops” on Facebook. Visit www.empoweredsingerworkshops.com for more information.
Cabaret artist Pat Whiteman (Amanda McBroom, Carol Hall, Musical Performance Workshop) reveals what finally made her trust her life and take the leap and into being a full time singer. She also gives her insights on why workshops are important for an artist’s growth, her own process for developing her shows, and her observations on reality singing competitions.
Pat has performed in musical theater, teaches and coaches, is a voice over artist and has sung on several national jingles. Pat became an instructor at the Department of Entertainment Studies at UCLA Extension teaching its Finding Your Voice Workshop and currently teaches her own Musical Performance Workshop, Pat has also performed her show at the metropolitan room in NYC to rave reviews.
There are so many paths to your journey and sometimes it just take you a little bit longer because of that.
Give yourself that time and everything will fall into place. You’ll find your workshop, you’ll find your class you can take where you’ll meet other singers, and performers and then it’ll move from there.
Being brave enough to try and stretch is the work of the artist.
Most singers have earned their voices.
Open mics are a great forum to get better and try new things.
Just because the audience is polite or quiet doesn’t mean that they’re not liking it.
Put together a demo with you singing lead and doing your best work.
In the singing world, what people are looking for is all over the place. Don’t try to be what you think they want you to be. Do what you do well. If you’re faking it, it’ll be obvious and there’s somebody else out there authentic who does it right.
Don’t half ass anything. Take yourself seriously.
Singers hire other singers. They either will refer someone who does what they do because they’re not available or they refer someone who kills it in an area they don’t.
You should always work to be better.
We all have our own thing to offer. There are so many opportunities to make money in this industry, but you’ve got to know what’s right for you.
Effort and commitment are a big deal.
When work is slow that’s when you go to a place of gratitude.
Be sure to give and provide opportunities for others.