came in the mail today which really excited me. It was from ASCAP,
the performing rights society to which I belong. (You probably already
belong to ASCAP or BMI or SEASAC or SOCAN or PRS or whatever, or
you soon will- -If you don't know what all these acronyms mean,
search this site and find out!!)
got me so jazzed was an invitation to an upcoming event about the
"Arts and Crafts" of songwriting, or some such title. ASCAP was
inviting ME. There was an email address on the post card, so I signed
up right away. I've always loved arts and crafts. I remember summer
camp as a kid. It was my favorite thing to do. No swimming or boating
or hiking for me....A little paste and some construction paper....Yes,
the kind of paste you could eat....And I was in my glory.
maybe we would be doing needlepoint, little pillows with G-Cleffs
on them, or those wavy staves with eighth notes floating aimlessly
nearby, tied together, and probably upside down from the way they
should really be. We've all seen greeting cards like this, drawn
by the tragically tone deaf, without any inkling that these drawings
of notes could ever actually MEAN something in another parallel
universe. "Hap-py Birth-day blah blah blah..." Maybe with lambs
or other small barnyard critters. Or how about those computer chip
cards that actually play a tri-tone scale of near-pitch notes that
make anyone with musical ability cringe, recalling squeaky chalk
boards, and first year violin students. Or maybe none of the above.
it turns out- -none of the above. I had mis-read the card. I have
actually signed up for "The Art and Craft of Songwriting". This
should be interesting too, even if it's not my first choice. We
all know that the "craft" in songwriting, at least at first, is
spelled with a "K", as in Macaroni and Cheese, because that's all
you can afford to eat until you get that first cut. But I shall
attend with an open mind. And ears. I might learn something, especially
about cooking the macaroni so it comes out a little firmer.
several well known songwriters with big-time credits will discuss
the art and craft of successful songwriting. They will lead "a creative
discussion aimed to be an inspiring and educational reality check".
They advertise that they will talk about writing for today's market,
song structure, demos, song critiques, and war stories. Well, at
least that part sounds interesting...War stories... I always liked
John Wayne in "Sink The Bismarck". Of course, I liked the Johnny
Horton theme song better. Don't remember? A classic "story" song.
(And a number one chart hit from the sixties!)
I WILL go and soak up whatever information these hitmakers have
to impart. And also because they may have tips on needlepoint or
macaroni and cheese. They all started somewhere, probably first
being told "NO".
urge you to go these kinds of things when they come around to your
neighborhood- -you never know what useful nugget might just turn
the light bulb on over your head. You may think you know enough
not to bother with stuff like this. You may. You may not. Which
mind set will advance your career? You decide. As experienced as
you may be, you can always refresh yourself by dropping in on one
of these FREE seminars. I may be the only person there not on the
panel with a tune somebody has cut. Or I may be the least successful.
One good thing about songwriting is that if you want to stay anonymous,
you can. Go and learn something useful. Learn more from www.ascap.com.
I'm hungry, and the noodles are almost done. You know, if you add
a little REAL cheese to the powder mix, it really improves the taste.
Soon we move up to bologna. And maybe a plate, too, so we don't
have to eat straight from the pan leaning over the sink.