The Muse's Muse  
Muses MailMuses Newsmuse chatsongwriting resource home
The Muse's News

Issue 9.10 - January 2007
ISSN 1480-6975

[ Back to The Muse's News Index ] [ Home ]

This issue sponsored by:

MasterWriter Songwriting Software - The perfect writing partner for any songwriter!


I n   T h i s   I s s u e :

@-- Editor's Musings
@-- Music Reviews - Chip Withrow, Jon Stewart, Gian Fiero,
                    Francesco Emmanuel & Alex Jasperse
@-- New Artist Spotlight Additions
@-- Songwriting Book Review - by Ed Teja
@-- Musical Notes - Songwriting Contests & Market Info.
@-- Muse's Clues - Songwriting Web sites that inspire - brought
    to you by singer/songwriter & teacher, Irene Jackson.
@-- Featured Article - Are house concerts a great opportunity for
                       you? by Fran Synder
@-- On Site Featured Article - An article already online for your
    viewing pleasure.
@-- Classifieds & Useful Services
@-- Contact information
ISSN 1480-6975. Copyright 1998-2006 - Jodi Krangle. 
For more contact information, see end of issue.
Remind yourself of your committment to songwriting every time you
use one of these special items.  There are even black t-shirts!
See for details.
S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e :
(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)


"This remarkable piece of software turns your Mac or PC into a
valuable songwriter partner"
-- Richard Leiter, Keyboard Magazine

If you have a high speed connection, you can download a 30-Day
demo. If not, we will send you a copy for $9.95 which will be
deducted from the purchase price if you decide to buy.

Receive a special $90.00 holiday discount off the $289.00 list
price (making it only $199!) when purchasing through the Muse's
Muse!  Please use discount coupon # 3004.

Endorsed by: BMI, ASCAP, NSAI, PRS and Taxi.
Winner Best of Show Macworld 2003


E d i t o r ' s   M u s i n g s :

Hi folks.  I hope your holiday season is progressing nicely. :)

There's a New Radio Muse Show!
If you have time, there's a new Radio Muse show available for
your listening pleasure.  It's Radio Muse #15 - and we have a new
(and very talented!) host by the name of Kevin King who runs his
own studio in Colorado (Blind Dog Audio).  There's more
information about him at the top of the page at .  And you'll also
find the link to listen to the show there.  We have some great
music for you this time around!  If you're interested in having
your own music played on the station, visit and follow the
instructions there to send in a package.  I look forward to
hearing your music!

I'd also like to mention that Gian's 2006 CD Awards are all ready
for your viewing pleasure.  If you sent in a CD and had it
reviewed in the past year, you might just be on his list of the
best of 2006!  Check it out at . 

I'm going to hold off on raffle awards for this particular issue
- mostly because getting a hold of people in email is extremely
difficult at this time of the year. ;) 

But if you'd like to be put in the queue for a raffle prize in
future issues of this newsletter, feel free to write to me with
your contact information (I promise it'll never be used for
anything other than getting you your prize).  

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday, whatever it was you were
celebrating.  And I wish you all a very happy, safe and
inspirational New Year!  Thanks once again for subscribing to
this newsletter.  Feel free to pass along the word to your
friends, if you think they might enjoy it too. :)

All the very best,


Back to Menu
S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e : 

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)


The CustomFlix CD on Demand service helps independent musicians
like you easily and affordably reach a worldwide audience by
making your audio CDs available to millions of
customers. The CustomFlix CD on Demand program is:

-- Easy to use 
-- Affordable, with no start-up costs 
-- Requires no inventory 

More Info:


M u s i c   R e v i e w s : Gian Fiero, Chip Withrow, 
                            Jon Stewart, Francesco Emmanuel
                            & Alex Jasperse

First of all, as already mentioned, Gian Fiero's CD Awards for
2006 are now available for your viewing pleasure.  If you sent in
a CD project this past year and had it reviewed, you might very
well be on his list.  Why not check out and see for yourself? :)

Gian puts a lot of effort into presenting these awards every year
so I hope, even if you weren't included in the final results,
that you'll check out the folks that were nominated.  Chances are
you'll like what you hear (and it'll give you ideas on what to
aspire to, too!).  Thank you, Gian!


Alex Jasperse:

* M.
* Stasera
* Fallen Grace]
* Gozzolop
* Yuganaut

Jon Stewart:

* Gerina di Marco

Francesco Emmanuel:

* Shane Philips
* Sandy Foster
* The Ault Sisters

Chip Withrow:

* Chemystry Set
* That's Him! That's the Guy!
* The Beefeater Project


For bios on each of the reviewers, see . If you're considering
sending in your own CD for review, you can also view that page to
find out which reviewer reviews your genre. Thanks!

Back to Menu


N e w   A r t i s t   S p o t l i g h t   A d d i t i o n s :  

Great music is only a click away!  
Here are just some of the great CDs highlighted in the 
Artist Spotlight section of The Muse's Muse at 

Voz Del Mar Music - Genre: LATIN

The newly written boleros and baladas of Ric Dominguez are
show-cased in this cd, featuring the dynamic voice of Jose Luis
Rios accompanied by colorful orchestral arrangements. For those
not familiar with the tradition of the bolero, this should be an
interesting introduction, as well as a welcome new addition for
those who already are aficionados.' Sung in Spanish, but with
printed English translations of the songs- adding impact, color,
and meaning to the experience.

S o n g w r i t i n g   B o o k   R e v i e w : by Ed Teja

Inspiration for Songwriters by Stan Swanson
As something of a songwriting snob, I must admit I was ready to
dismiss this little (164 page) book when it arrived. And my first
impression reinforced that thought. Here was a book that
consisted of lists, and lyric snippets, songwriting tips and
miscellaneous ideas and I was supposed to get inspired? I had
serious reservations.

Well it worked. I hadn't flipped through more than a few pages,
just reading random bits and pieces, before I had more ideas for
new songs than I could shake a stick at. 

Stan Swanson's directions for using the book are very specific:
"Use it as you wish" he says. That appeals to the anarchist in

There is a small linear section of prose in front where Stan
Swanson gives you a brief insight into his take on this job of
songwriting, his own experience, how the muse works (or doesn't),
and the structure of the book. After that comes ...the book. The
inspirations. Each page is standalone. Swanson has come up with a
formula that packages together some disparate items that work, by
association, to make your mind click over. He tickles the
internal idea factory. On every page of the main text, there are
words (to inspire a song), thoughts (to write a song about),
great lines from other people's songs, lists of titles and
songwriting tips. He seemed to have some lists of things he
wanted to include, items that just didn't fit in the formula.
You'll find those in back. Lists of transportation types,
songwriters who might inspire you, music that might inspire you,
and some additional resources. I didn't find those particularly
useful myself, but everyone relates differently. 

And let me point out that even within the inspirational pages,
the specific items themselves might not inspire you. Some don't
seem like much. And by themselves, they aren't. That is what
makes the book useful — the fact that you don't encounter just
one.  For instance, one "SOMETHING TO WRITE A SONG ABOUT" is
walking down a dusty road. There are times when that might
trigger something you want to use. But other times the road isn't
dusty, and you might not be walking. So your brain drifts a bit
and you find yourself considering what might lyrically describe
sitting in rush hour traffic. And if you look at the top of the
page, there is a song title suggestion: DRIVING ME OUT OF MY
MIND. Hey, that might be on the right track. Now you can settle
down and see if you can make a traffic jam into a lyrical

What makes this work is that it doesn't matter what reaction you
have to his ideas or suggestions, but only that you react. I'm
not sure I want to write a songs about "Takin' But Not Stealing"
but immediately I can think of stealing away, and that leads
to... well it leads to another song for me.

In the hierarchy of books, this one clearly falls into the
category of those that accomplish what they set out to do. And
that is a substantial achievement.

Ed Teja lives in New Mexico, USA, writing songs and
instrumentals, and trying to find them loving homes. Performing
since the early 60s, he has appeared at strange venues in Hong
Kong, Canada, St. Martin, Bequia, Venezuela, Grenada and
Trinidad, as well as the Silver City (New Mexico) Blues festival
in 2003, and the Tucson (Arizona) Folk Festival in 2006. Working
as a magazine editor and freelance writer, his articles appeared
in magazines ranging from Pro Sound News, BYTE magazine, to
Import/Export, and with book reviews in THE SOUTH CHINA MORNING
POST, and The Midwest Review of Books.

Find out more about Ed at: to Menu

             S p o n s o r   M e s s a g e : 

(Many thanks to the sponsors that help support this newsletter!)



Lyricist is the first-of-its-kind word processor designed
specifically for musicians, songwriters, and poets.  The software
includes a Rhyming Dictionary, Thesaurus, Album Categorization,
Chord Charting, Chord Generator, Song Arrangement, and On-Line
Copyright Link.  

The new version 3 release adds support for "Piano Style" chord
symbols, Nashville Number System, and Transposition features -
all in one easy-to-use package - and all for only $44.95! (That's
$5.00 off to all Muse's News readers who purchase from the review
link at!)

This tool will revolutionize the way you write and organize your
writing.  Be the best songwriter you can be and purchase Lyricist

M u s i c a l   N o t e s : Songwriting Contests & Market Info.

In the interest of conserving space, I will only be including
changes to this listing in this newsletter.  All other contests
and market information that have already been listed here, are
displayed at & . Please check there
regularly for updates!
BLUES HERITAGE CONTEST - 2007 together with the Lakeside Blues Festival
( organizes a blues song writing contest based
on blues heritage. The first part of the contest is organized on
the internet during 6 weeks from the 19th of February to the 1st
of April A local Jury consisting of music professionals will
select out of the received entries 60 compositions + lyrics (when
applicable) to be participating in 6 weekly competitions ( ten
each week )! The winner of each week will be invited to
participate in the finals in Järvenpää, Finland on the 29th of
June, 2007. The Jury will award a grand prize of USD 3,000 to the
winner of the finals in Finland.
Deadline for song submissions is January 31, 2007. IMPORTANT -
Please read the Rules and regulations!!!!
Established 1984. One contest per issue, 6 issues each year.

Requirements: Send lyrics only. Lyrics must be typed and payment
for $10 (per entry) must be enclosed. No limit per contest.
Include an entry form with each lyric sheet submitted. Call for
required official form (615-321-6096) or print it from our
website. ~ Lyrics only, no
cassettes or CDs.

Awards: A Martin guitar DX-1 with case, D'Addario strings to each
contest winner. Top 4 winning lyrics for each contest reprinted
in American Songwriter Magazine. Honorable Mentions are listed as
well. Each issue features a Lyric Entrant Q&A as well. One
overall winner per year receives airfare (from American Airlines)
to Nashville and a demo session at Music City Music Productions.

Vikki Simpson, Australian singer-songwriter from a folk group
called "The Waifs" won Overall Grand Prize as well as the first
prize in the Folk category with her song "Bridal Train" in the
11th Annual USA Songwriting Competition. See the complete
winners' list here:

Entries for the 12th Annual USA Songwriting Competition are
currently being accepted. Winning songs of the 2007 USA
Songwriting Competition will receive airplay on a nationally
syndicated radio program, Acoustic Café, as well as XM Satellite
Radio. Sponsors include Keyboard Magazine, Sony, Ibanez Guitars
and D'Addario Strings.

The NMVA is your audio-visual exposure opportunity of a lifetime!
Celebrating exceptional music videos by new artists - signed or
unsigned - the creators of the event, We Are Listening, will
provide a cash advance and global digital distribution to the
winning submissions, determined by a public vote. More details
Deadline: 22nd January 2007

BandBuzz - the only community driven music promotion platform
where you can see the results. Sign up, build your profile and
become one of our pioneering bands as you upload music that will
be reviewed, rated and ultimately heard by thousands. Each person
who votes, comments or reviews your music will be automatically
added to your FanBase™, a collection of like-minded individuals
who you can contact about your new songs, albums, shows and more.
Soon you will be able to plan events, send scheduled mailings and
even sell your music, all right here. Like a mix tape for the
modern world, enables you to share your music with
the world. Users of the site can discover new bands, listen to
music, learn about shows in their city and share their thoughts
with the bandBUZZ community.
There is absolutely no charge to list your band or its music. 

Download's free and easy Copyright Kit. Print
Copyright forms, Copyright submission process, handy tips &
tricks, choosing the right form, and more. 

Music Gorilla works with Bands, Musicians, Artists and
Songwriters to get their original material into the eyes and ears
of industry members who have the ability to take their careers to
the next level. We work with Reps from Major Labels, Indie Labels
and Film Studios. Our artists get access to free submissions for
film, TV and video games, they are eligible for free live label
showcases, digital distribution with MSN and Loudeye and more. We
don’t take any piece of any deals made on our site, and have had
many successes including placement, songwriting and publishing

Muse's Muse artists get 10% off of memberships!
Just enter the promotional code "muse" during registration.

Tony Butterworth, a home musician and advocate for home based
music, has released his new internet based program, The Home Made
Hit Show, featuring exciting and original rock, acoustic, blues
and pop music made by home based artists. The Home Made Hit Show
strives to deliver top quality, original, home based rock, pop,
blues and acoustic music to its listeners. "After years of being
disillusioned with popular music, I was ready for a change", said
Butterworth, "After taking up guitar and making a few of my own
songs, I discovered a huge online community of amateur musicians,
many of them producing songs of a quality that simply astounded
Please listen in and and send songs and
comments to 

Pete & Pat Luboff will pay for the phone call for Muse's Muse
songwriters who use the Luboffs' songwriting consultation
service. The service provides detailed, constructive song
analysis, answers to all your creative and business questions and
references to contacts when appropriate. Visit for more information.

It's important for your website to be found once it's created. We
all know this. But who can afford the promotion a website needs
to truly make its mark on the web? Now YOU can. This package is
offered exclusively to Muse's Muse visitors only - and now
includes an Artist Spotlight listing! Do you have a website that
no one knows about? Do you want it to stand out from the crowd?
Now you can get it promoted for a fraction of the price most
search engine optimization packages would cost you.  Visit
for more details.

Back to Menu

M u s e ' s    C l u e s :  by Irene Jackson

©1998-2007 Moonstone Productions All Rights Reserved. 
Used By Permission

For any of you who have never Google'd "songwriting"...well, you
are a rare bunch!  The first couple of pages will give you the
best songwriting websites available, including, of course, the
Muse's Muse   I have a songwriting website too.  And one thing
that I have always noticed is the number of people who reach my
website using the key words "how much money does a songwriter
make".  In fact, it happened so often that I finally wrote an
article on it.  Okay, I'm promoting my own website here: I've
never done that before, but I wanted to make a point.  So, check
this out first: 

This article was written in response to the number of hits I get
using those keywords.  So just for fun, I decided that I would
use the same keywords and Google exactly the same thing.  And
here are a few websites I came up with. The Performing Songwriter
(a magazine I highly recommend) has a very frank article about
the realities of making money as a songwriter.  It is a PDF file,
so make sure you have Acrobat Reader so you can read it.  Here it

There is some very practical advice here, right down to credit
cards and how they work.  As I said in my article, if you are in
it for the money, you've got a lot of work to do.  For instance,
how do you deal with your taxes?  In most countries, you can take
a loss for a couple of years or so, but what do you really know
about what you can claim and what the realities are in terms of
starting a business?  Here is some more info for those of you in
the U.S.:

The above article is a Music Dish interview with Cathy McCormack,
who is a Certified Public Accountant.  Let's get real, it's not
just about making money, it's about claiming income and
understanding the write-offs!  Lastly, here is a great article on
copyrights and making money by Harvey Reid:

This Christmas I wish that each of you will see some kind of
success in the New Year from your songwriting.  But most of all,
I hope that you will arm yourself with all of the knowledge that
you need to make the best of whatever comes your way!
Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!

Irene Jackson is a performing songwriter from Victoria, BC in
Canada. Aside from writing, recording and performing, she also
maintains a website for songwriters that includes tips, articles
and a songwriter's messageboard.

Songwriting Tips:
Back to Menu

F e a t u r e d   A r t i c l e : by Fran Snyder - © 2006

       Are house concerts a great opportunity for you?
House concerts are one of the most important trends in
independent music today. Musicians across the country are
discovering a great way to connect with new audiences -
performing in people's homes.

There's just something about house concerts. The intimacy really
allows a deeper connection to the audience, and that connection
often leads to strong merchandise sales and lifelong fans.

Can you perform: - as a solo, duo, or small trio? - 60-90 minutes
of mostly original material? - with little or no amplification? -
for donations ($8-15/person) from those who attend?

The house concert community is currently made up of hundreds of
very loosely affiliated folk and acoustic music fans. They are
generally interested in:

- folk and contemporary folk 
- singer-songwriter 
- bluegrass 
- country/americana 
- and some celtic.

If you perform rap, hard rock, cover tunes, or electronic music,
you won't find much interest from house concert presenters at
this time.

Also, many of the current house concert hosts prefer to book acts
they've seen before. They often go to music festivals, but some
will check out acts when they play nearby clubs. Since most
presenters only book 2 to 10 shows per year (it's a hobby, not a
job), many stay booked pretty far in advance.

But here are some positive trends...

1. More people discover house concerts every day. House concerts
are becoming a popular way to see live music, and a great source
of new fans for artists.

2. Through the internet, it is now easier than ever before for
artists and concert hosts to find each other.

3. Artists are actively growing the market. Every time they play
a house concert, they have a good chance to turn an interested
fan into a house concert host. This new host might then enjoy the
experience so much that he starts booking other artists.

4. The growing house concert community will open up to different
kinds of artists. Why not poets, children's performers,
instrumental or flamenco guitar? Any act that can fit into a
living room might eventually find a fan here.

So if you are looking for an alternative to bars, noisy cafes,
and other venues which provide too many distractions (TVs over
the artists heads!), house concerts might be a great new source
of gigs to pursue.

How to get started:

1. Learn all you can about house concerts - how to put them on,
what's expected, what's optional, and how many opportunities
currently exist in your region. 
Here are some great, fun to read articles: by Bob Bassin by TR Ritchie

2. Start with your fans - these are the best opportunity an
artist has to get bookings quickly, and have them well attended
so you can make a nice profit. Remind them every time you send
out emails that you are now doing "house concerts" and include a
link to an article/site where they can get more information.

3. Host one yourself! If your living quarters aren't adequate,
find a friend, family member, or neighbor to put one on. If you
aren't ready to do a full 60-90 minute show, consider booking an
artist you really admire, and book yourself as the opening act!

If you are a talented performer who is comfortable being close to
the crowd, telling stories between songs, and hanging out with
new fans, you owe it to yourself to explore these opportunities.

Fran Snyder is a singer-songwriter based in Lawrence, KS, who is
in love with doing house concerts. Fran created, a site dedicated to creating more
opportunities for artists to perform "gigs where people listen."
The site is free to use, but artists may join ($25/year) to
promote their act. The site also funds a national press campaign
to increase the popularity of house concerts. 

Fran Snyder's music can be heard at to Menu


    " O N   S I T E "   F E A T U R E D   A R T I C L E :

Stories Behind the Christmas Carols - by Mary Dawson

They are so familiar that we scarcely pause to think about where
they came from! They are the Christmas carols we love to sing and
play every year. But there were songwriters behind the scenes
that created these wonderful songs. When you hear the stories
behind the carols, you will appreciate them even more.
================================================================= C l a s s i f i e d s & U s e f u l S e r v i c e s : ----------------------------------------------------------------- THE 7th EDITION OF THE INDIE BIBLE IS NOW AVAILABLE! The Indie Bible shows you where to get your music reviewed, your songs played, and your CDs sold. Now in its Seventh Edition, The Indie Bible has 330 pages of valuable contacts and music-related articles. The 7th Edition of the Indie Bible contains: 4200 publications around the world that will REVIEW your CD! 3400 radio stations around the world that will PLAY your songs! 500 vendors and services that will help you to SELL your music! 200 sites where you can UPLOAD your band's MP3 files! 500 helpful resources and sites where you can PROMOTE your band! 52 articles that will help your career to MOVE forward rapidly! Listings include web, e-mail and physical address, as well as phone and fax numbers. For details and to order online visit: ----------------------------------------------------------------- REAL ANSWERS TO REAL QUESTIONS, An eBook About Copyright & Publishing If you want to know how to protect yourself as a songwriter in this digital age, you need this book - EXCLUSIVELY offered through The Muse's Muse. And it's now on sale for half price! Visit to learn more! ----------------------------------------------------------------- BUILD A BUZZ AT INDIE-MUSIC.COM FOR ONLY $5/MONTH Artists: Why join I-M has been spotlighting the best in independent music since 1996, featuring Articles, Interviews, Reviews, Charts, & Streaming Audio in all musical styles. Member Artists receive generous promotion on the I-M website (2.5 million+ hits per month) plus access to our famous original DIY resources, which have helped numerous musicians book thousands of dollars worth of work over the years. For a limited time, new annual Members receive free Lyricist and TrackNotes software value $69.95). There's never been a better time to join I-M! ================================================================= ADVERTISING RATES: For Classifieds: US$50 Max. 8 lines, where a line = 65 characters including spaces and punctuation. All contracts must be prepaid. Write to: For Newsletter Sponsorship rates and other advertising opportunities, please see . Back to Menu
================================================================= C o n t a c t I n f o & C r e d i t s : ----------------------------------------------------------------- Jodi Krangle ............................................. EDITOR Kathryn Obenshain ...........................GRACIOUS PROOFREADER ----------------------------------------------------------------- The Muse's News is a free monthly newsletter for and about songwriters. Subscribers are welcome to recirculate or reprint The Muse's News for nonprofit use as long as the appropriate credit is given and the ENTIRE text of the newsletter is included (including credits and information at the end of each issue). Others should contact me at All articles copyrighted by their authors. Back issues and other information will be available at: The Muse's News is part of The Muse's Muse, a web resource for songwriters: For further information, send your e-mail to: ----------------------------------------------------------------- - How to place a classified ad, pass on market information or sponsor The Muse's News. - How to subscribe, unsubscribe, etc. - To submit articles,reviews,ideas,etc. SNAILMAIL: Please contact me first at ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Back issues of the newsletter can be read at the National
Library of Canada ecollection: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Back to Menu

[ Back to The Muse's News Index ] [ Home ]

Help For Newcomers
Help for Newcomers
Helpful Resources
Helpful Resources
Berklee Music Resources
The Muse's News
Entertainment Cyberscope
Newer Articles
Past Columnists
Past Columnists - After March 2007
Market Information
Songwriting Contests
Chat Logs
Songwriting Books
Regular Columnists
Services Offered
About the  Muse's Muse
About Muse's Muse
Subscribe to The Muse's News, free monthly newsletter for songwriters
with exclusive articles, copyright & publishing advice, music, website & book reviews, contest & market information, a chance to win prizes & more!

Join today!

Created & Maintained
by Jodi Krangle


© 1995 - 2016, The Muse's Muse Songwriting Resource. All rights reserved.

Read The Muse's Muse Privacy Statement