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#548918 - 08/11/19 09:40 AM [Off-Topic] Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music"
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JoanneCooper Offline
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I light of some of the recent posts I thought folks might be interested in this TED talk by Amanda Palmer. I found it quite wonderful and refreshing (and slightly shocking...). Stay to the end and you will hear her say that it is time to stop asking "how can we get people to pay for music" to "how can we start letting people pay for music".


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#548922 - 08/11/19 10:35 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 07/08/19
Posts: 55
Loc: TN
Roger Brown Offline
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I disagree with basically everything she said, but I respect her having the guts to stand up, say it, and practice what she preaches.

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#548947 - 08/11/19 03:44 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 12/20/16
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Loc: Gold Coast, Queensland, Austra...
Teunis Offline
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I think Amanda has valid points. In the early 80s after a heap of drinks at a work function we went to Kings Cross in Sydney. Kings Cross was full of buskers sitting about usually strumming guitars with no one listening. The place was full of country folk as the rugby league grand final was on next day. In my intoxicated state I offered a busker $50 for his guitar for 30 minutes. He could keep the $50 if I could not raise more than the $50. I set about entertaining, not amusing myself but doing songs (actually Chad Morgan type stuff) and getting every drunken yobbo involved. Money flowed in. Another busker came up and asked how are you raking in the money. My answer “put $5 in the hat and I’ll tell you.” “That’s how I’m doing it, playing what the folks want and asking for money, doing requests for money”.

Well I made the busker $180 in about 30 minutes. I never paid for another drink all night. Was offered several jobs in local venues but I had a band I had to fly back to next morning.

The trick is simple. Entertain the audience and ask for a return. Give more than they ask.

My thoughts
Tony
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#548987 - 08/12/19 12:36 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 05/12/12
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JoanneCooper Offline
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Ah Tony. That is a fantastic story!

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#549009 - 08/12/19 06:31 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
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Notes Norton Offline
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I've been playing music for a living since I was young. It paid off the mortgage, buys cars, buys food, and so on. Other than car payments, I'm in zero debt and I go on vacation once a year (I've been on every continent but Antarctica).

I don't live like a well-to-do person. The house is a modest house in a desirable neighborhood, I buy Dodge/Ford cars instead of BMW/Benz price points, no jewelry, no luxuries but comfort (I'd rather spend my money on travel).

I have played in dive bars, singles clubs, show lounges, 5 star hotels, cruise ships, and even as the opening act for major headliners in concert while their hits were in the top 10 on Billboard.

As Tony pointed out, give the audience what they want. I might add be better than your competition.

I have friends who are my competitors in this business. Some of them are very good musicians and entertainers. My objective is to do a better job than they do. We are small businesses in competition for limited gigs. A few of us get the most and the better paying gigs because we are better than the rest. That's it.

We practice songs until we have them down well. I do my own backing tracks and if it takes a few days to get one song to the best of my abilities, I give it that much time.

We play the songs the audience wants. We collect requests, and when something gets requested often, if it is within our capabilities, we learn it. Even if a regular customer repeatedly requests a song, and he/she is the only one who requests it, we learn it.

We remember who asks for songs, and when they come in and get settled, we find an appropriate time to play it for them, and let them know it's for them, either say, "Here's one for Jim" or just nod and a wink.

We play what the audience wants to hear, when the audience wants to hear it. In other words, we watch the audience, use our experience to pace them and play what's appropriate for the time.

I hear bands saying, "We don't play Brown Eyed Girl, Old Time Rock And Roll, Mustang Sally, Uptown Funk or whatever but we are not like that. We play popular music, it's popular for a reason, and if the audience likes it, we will enjoy playing it. Really, we get lost into the music when we start playing, whether it's a simple song or a challenging one.

We involve the audience, it's a dialog with them, not a lecture.

We realize we are in a service business. Our job is to give the audience the best experience we can. If they go home with a smile on their faces, if they enjoyed themselves, we've done our job.

Like any business, if you want to make money in that business, give the customers what they want, and do a better job than your competition.

Insights and incites by Notes
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#549011 - 08/12/19 06:49 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: Notes Norton]
Registered: 12/27/03
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MarioD Online   content
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Notes you are spot on! We hold the same views when it comes to playing gigs.

Your "We play the songs the audience wants. We collect requests, and when something gets requested often, if it is within our capabilities, we learn it. Even if a regular customer repeatedly requests a song, and he/she is the only one who requests it, we learn it." is exactly what a successful wedding band does.

That and communicating with the audience in a fun way got us recommended for many gigs. For instance if it was a fun wedding, immediately after the guy put the garter on the girl we would stop the music and say "good try but you put it on the wrong leg"! Lots of laughs as the band starts playing again.

On one gig we had to play The Chicken Dance 4 times. We hated The Chicken Dance but they were paying the bill so they get what they wanted.

Play what they want, be good musicians, and be professional and you will get many gigs. At least that is what happened to us until DJs took over the wedding business.
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#549012 - 08/12/19 07:01 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 07/08/19
Posts: 55
Loc: TN
Roger Brown Offline
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If you're an artist....or an artist/writer, some of what she says makes sense.

But put on your songwriter hat for a minute. What if you're NOT a performing songwriter? If you're not an artist? Tell me how well giving your music away and hoping for benevolent patronage works out for you.

I can tell you exactly how it will work out, because it's already happened. Since the advent of "free" music (when Napster started in 1999), 80% of American professional songwriters have quit the business. Think about that number for a minute. 80%.

I'll put it on a local level. In Nashville, at the high-water mark in the 90s there were around 4,500 full-time songwriters signed to staff writing publishing deals in Nashville. There were also around 35 labels. At present, best estimate is that there are somewhere between 250-350 full time songwriters signed to publishing companies. The number of labels is down around single digits, depending on your criteria for legit labels.

If you're a performing artist, you get paid (or SHOULD get paid) to play. You sell merch - t-shirts, ball caps, koozies, CDs still, etc. I know dozens of artist who make the majority of their income from merch. Guess how much of that money goes to the writers who wrote the songs they perform .... zero.

Maybe some of you, when you perform, submit a playlist to ASCAP OnStage or BMI Live. If you don't, even though the venue pays license fees to the PROs, the writers of the songs you perform may not receive any royalties (and probably don't).

So forgive me if I don't buy into what she's selling, because what she's selling is helping destroy my profession.

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#549031 - 08/12/19 09:35 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 06/08/05
Posts: 7002
Loc: Redondo Beach, Ca.
jazzmammal Online   content
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The difference here Roger is she's performing her own original material.

This vid is from 2013 and was posted here back then and a similar discussion happened. What I get from this is again, the difference in generational culture. She's young, we're old. It's all about social media. Young people are all over social media while us older folks hardly understand where to start with it. Twitter is unbelievably powerful and I don't use it at all.

You're talking about songwriters who are not performers and make very valid points about the music biz but that really has little to do with what she's talking about. What she did is what I've written about many times. To make it in the modern musical world, you write your own stuff, perform it yourself and use social media do start and grow your own personal fan base. She is the poster child for how young people with no connections in the business itself control their own destiny.

It's not just having a Facebook page where you post concert dates and such, no it's you writing about all kinds of personal stuff, political stuff, making comments about virtually anything and everything and eventually you wind up with thousands and thousands of like minded people who follow you and read and like everything you say and write. And oh by the way you happen to write and perform music too.

Putting everything you are, everything you think about, telling millions of total strangers all about yourself down to the deepest personal level is completely alien to us older folks way of thinking but this is what young people do every day.

Bob
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#549041 - 08/12/19 10:23 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: jazzmammal]
Registered: 07/08/19
Posts: 55
Loc: TN
Roger Brown Offline
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Registered: 07/08/19
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Loc: TN
Bob,
Respectfully, you're missing the point - the fans don't know who write the songs, and don't care. They assume the artist wrote them. This type of video perpetuates that myth (a very popular myth by the way) that all artists write their own songs. I'm not suggesting that it was her intention to do that, quite the opposite. But it absolutely does so.

The problem is that while yes, on the ARTIST side of things, what she is saying makes sense, she is effectively throwing her songwriting income (money that she is entitled to) out the window.

I'm possibly overly sensitive to it, but in my defense, I've had to sit in meetings with the people who control how I get paid (member of Congress) and they almost universally struggle with the concept of "artist" and "songwriter" being two different things. These are the people making the laws I'm bound by - they see videos like this as well. How do you think that impacts my ability to get them to help songwriters? I was in a meeting with a prominent U.S. Senator who, when we explained this difference, laughed....LAUGHED....and said (and I quote) "Well maybe you boys should think about getting a real job." I write with a lot of artists who place so little value on their own songs, and by extension my contributions to them, that they almost get offended when I expect to get paid for my work.

I'm steadfast in my opinion. ANY artist who writes & performs their own material, and then gives it away in the manner she's describing, is naive and misguided - if for no other reason than this: if your work is available for free, or your compensation for it is entirely dependent on what amount to donations from your audience, then what real value does your work have? What price competes with free? And how does her decision to conduct business that way effect other bands/artists who play the same venues, and in some cases, for the same crowds? If you're selling a t-shirt for $25, and a ball cap for $15, and other merch for who knows how much, but you ENCOURAGE people to download your music for free (even illegally), what you are saying is that music is just a gimmick that helps you sell keychains and bumper stickers.

Part of the problem is their careers aren't really about their music, it's about "marketing their brand". That mentality has led to the demise of a lot of what makes (or made) music great to start with. It's a negative to the entire music ecosystem as I see it.

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#549060 - 08/12/19 12:35 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
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JohnJohnJohn Offline
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Amanda Palmer's approach is NOT what ruined the music industry! Rather, she is an example of a smart and talented person figuring out a way to thrive within the new music industry. Same thing with Notes Norton; he has figured out a way to thrive even though I'm sure the gigs are much fewer and further between than they were 30 years ago.

Two things killed the music industry, 1) technology (digital copying, the internet with file sharing, etc.) and 2) the explosion of options competing for the attention of your former paying customers! We have the entire internet with every song ever recorded. We have every newspaper and book. We have online forums and communities and social media. We have smartphones and Kindles. We have almost unlimited channels on the TV and a library of every movie & TV show ever made.

People have so many options that, not only will they not buy your new album, they won't even listen to it if you give it away!

Amanda Palmer is a shining example of a brilliant person who has figured out a way to continue to make money in this vanishing industry. And I applaud her!

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#549088 - 08/12/19 03:35 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 06/19/17
Posts: 1909
Loc: Victoria, BC
Ember - PG Music Offline
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Registered: 06/19/17
Posts: 1909
Loc: Victoria, BC
I always find TED Talks can be quite divisive but I'm happy to see some good exchanges happening in this thread and constructive conversations! Definitely lots to think about and mull over.
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#549093 - 08/12/19 04:22 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
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rockstar_not Offline
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Amanda Palmer is also very well connected. She also quite famously did some type of nude thing to promote herself.

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#549098 - 08/12/19 04:54 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
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MusicStudent Offline
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Given this a bit of though. Seems she makes a lot of sense if you are looking for a career as a professional Busker (i.e., some one who makes their living by busking). But what do I know...
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#549120 - 08/12/19 08:38 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 06/08/05
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jazzmammal Online   content
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As a somewhat educated and interested observer I'm simply commenting on what I see as the reality of the situation similar to JJJ's comments. I spent 6 years on the road booked by a big national agency. Then I was a sub-agent for another big agency. I knew a lot about the business from an agency pov, auditioning bands, contracts, riders, class A rooms and all that good stuff.

Of course all that experience is over 40 years old. I've tried to keep up on things but not being directly involved any more it's not easy. And even if I was involved the whole digital revolution caught a whole bunch of those people completely by surprise anyway and I would have been one of them.

I completely support what you're doing Roger but I fear what it finally amounts to is rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. You're the one on the ground, maybe you have reason to be more optimistic than I am?

Bob
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#549122 - 08/12/19 09:02 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: rockstar_not]
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jazzmammal Online   content
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Originally Posted By: rockstar_not
Amanda Palmer is also very well connected. She also quite famously did some type of nude thing to promote herself.


You mean like Lady Gaga? It's called whatever it takes if you want it bad enough. Nothing new there. You want it you have to shake the trees, rattle the cages, marry whomever, do whatever. And all the while look pretty, make nice, make everybody think you're just the sweetest little thing.

And it's not just the girls, the male artists are just as bad.

Bob
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#549125 - 08/12/19 11:24 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: rockstar_not]
Registered: 05/12/12
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Loc: South Africa
JoanneCooper Offline
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Loc: South Africa
Originally Posted By: rockstar_not
Amanda Palmer is also very well connected. She also quite famously did some type of nude thing to promote herself.


I think she has done quite a few of these. I am busy with her book "The art of asking" so I will let you know when I come to that part. In the TED talk there is a photo of her standing amongst the crowd in the nude letting them write all over her...

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#549131 - 08/13/19 12:34 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: Roger Brown]
Registered: 08/21/18
Posts: 674
Tangmo Offline
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Registered: 08/21/18
Posts: 674
Originally Posted By: Roger Brown
Bob,
Respectfully, you're missing the point - the fans don't know who write the songs, and don't care. They assume the artist wrote them. This type of video perpetuates that myth (a very popular myth by the way) that all artists write their own songs. I'm not suggesting that it was her intention to do that, quite the opposite. But it absolutely does so.

The problem is that while yes, on the ARTIST side of things, what she is saying makes sense, she is effectively throwing her songwriting income (money that she is entitled to) out the window.

I'm possibly overly sensitive to it, but in my defense, I've had to sit in meetings with the people who control how I get paid (member of Congress) and they almost universally struggle with the concept of "artist" and "songwriter" being two different things. These are the people making the laws I'm bound by - they see videos like this as well. How do you think that impacts my ability to get them to help songwriters? I was in a meeting with a prominent U.S. Senator who, when we explained this difference, laughed....LAUGHED....and said (and I quote) "Well maybe you boys should think about getting a real job." I write with a lot of artists who place so little value on their own songs, and by extension my contributions to them, that they almost get offended when I expect to get paid for my work.

I'm steadfast in my opinion. ANY artist who writes & performs their own material, and then gives it away in the manner she's describing, is naive and misguided - if for no other reason than this: if your work is available for free, or your compensation for it is entirely dependent on what amount to donations from your audience, then what real value does your work have? What price competes with free? And how does her decision to conduct business that way effect other bands/artists who play the same venues, and in some cases, for the same crowds? If you're selling a t-shirt for $25, and a ball cap for $15, and other merch for who knows how much, but you ENCOURAGE people to download your music for free (even illegally), what you are saying is that music is just a gimmick that helps you sell keychains and bumper stickers.

Part of the problem is their careers aren't really about their music, it's about "marketing their brand". That mentality has led to the demise of a lot of what makes (or made) music great to start with. It's a negative to the entire music ecosystem as I see it.


This.

Maybe it's time we quit thinking of the profession of song-writing as akin to the profession of horse buggy-seat manufacturing. Writing songs is NOT an "industry" that is disappearing because something other than songs has supplanted it. It's not under threat because nobody needs songs any more. It's under threat because the new music economy places too little value on songs. If people who genuinely appreciate music can agree that neglect, abuse, and ripoffs of old blues-men was "wrong", they ought to be able to draw a few parallels. Maybe Mr. Senator should think about getting a real job. More power to song-writers and composers.


Edited by Tangmo (08/13/19 12:50 AM)
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#549231 - 08/13/19 01:43 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 4749
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
Notes Norton Offline
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Personally, I miss the days of the professional song writer. From Tin Pan Alley to the Brill Building era, countless great songs were penned and given to singers who could really put them across.

Then we got into the singer-songwriter era where the songwriter is supposed to sing his or her own songs. The problem is that although there are some great singers who can write songs, there are also some songwriters who can't sing well and some great singers who can't write songs. This robs the public of some great music.

But things change, and survival goes to those who can adapt to the changes. Whether it means nude photos, Internet networking, free performances, or anything else, you need to do something the public is interested in purchasing and promote it in a way that reaches them.

When the MADD mothers started their campaign against drunk driving and Leilani and I were having personnel problems in the 5 piece band we were in together, I decided to make our own backing tracks and go duo. At the time other musicians were saying, "You are putting musicians out of work with those things."

I replied, "I'm putting two musicians to work with these things. We play smaller venues that would never hire more than a single or duo, we just sound better than other singles and duos."

I'm not a songwriter by trade, so I never stopped to think about how to adjust to this changing marketplace. That's the challenge, and I suppose there are many different ways to do it.

Insights and incites by Notes
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#549297 - 08/14/19 12:11 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: Notes Norton]
Registered: 05/12/12
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Loc: South Africa
JoanneCooper Offline
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Loc: South Africa
Originally Posted By: Notes Norton


But things change, and survival goes to those who can adapt to the changes. Whether it means nude photos, Internet networking, free performances, or anything else, you need to do something the public is interested in purchasing and promote it in a way that reaches them.



This......

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#549425 - 08/14/19 02:17 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Its time we stopped asking "how can we get people to start paying for music" [Re: JoanneCooper]
Registered: 03/18/04
Posts: 6520
Loc: Mississippi Gulf Coast
Danny C. Offline
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I know after listening to this I just can't wait to get naked after a show (thinking better than before the show) and let the audience use my body as a canvas.

PS: Jokes aside, I live in an area where they are 75 - 100 or so live music venues within 50 miles, that's the good news. The bad news is that musicians here will work for nothing upwards to 30.00 bucks and hour just to say "they got the gig". The better news is that at corporate gigs, private parties etc. a good act can bring in 100.00 - 150.00 and hour, and I can keep my clothes on.

Later,
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Band-in-a-Box® Tip of the Day!

Did you know that Band-in-a-Box® will show you some helpful "Tips" when you start the program? What a great way for new program users to learn all the features of the program! Want to know Tips on just the latest version? This feature can be adjusted to just show the Tips for that too.

Maybe you're a long-time user of the program, and have this feature turned off? To access Tip of the Day (450+ available!), head to Help | Tip of the Day. Your Tip will appear right away - and you'll have the option of reading the Next Tip if you wanted too! Within this window is where you would also choose to "Show Tips at Startup" (if this is unchecked, you won't see them), or "Only Show Tips for Version 2019".

Here's a few Tips the program informed me of the last time I opened Band-in-a-Box®:

In the Piano Roll window, the 'Ghost Note' function allows you to view a single-channel, and see notes on all other channels display in light grey. This is useful when working with multi-channel tracks.

Want a bigger guitar display? Drag the bottom end of the Guitar Window to change its size, or press the SETTINGS button to set a custom size.

The Printout can use left and right MARGINS. This is useful to make printouts for small paper size or 3 hole paper that requires margins.

Edit | Nudge Chords/Melody. Let's say that you have entered a complete song chord progression, and you then realize that all of the chords starting at bar 23 are 1 beat to late. You can use this feature to slide your chords over by 1 beat.

#TipTuesday

Video - Using the Band-in-a-Box® Vocal Wizard

Check out this incredibly thorough video created by Dennis Wilkins, which explains how he uses the Band-in-a-Box® Vocal Wizard! Click here to watch..

YouTube Find - Ballad for a Travelling Lady

We did a search for Band-in-a-Box on YouTube, and look at what we found!

Video - "Ballad for a Travelling Lady" by Stefan Leipziger

What a great use of Band-in-a-Box! Check out Stefan's YouTube Channel for even more of songs he's created with the help of Band-in-a-Box.

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