The Brilliant Martyn Joseph from Wales is Coming to Kingston on Sept. 6th!

Martyn JosephMARTYN JOSEPH

From Wales to Canada

Hi friends, neighbours and music lovers! I’m thrilled to help Al Rankin announce that the brilliant Welsh singer/songwriter Martyn Joseph will be coming to Sydenham Street United Church in less than three weeks from now. They are going to use the newly renovated concert hall upstairs, a beautiful 200 seat space that will be the perfect venue for a very special performer. Proceeds from the concert will fund peace and social justice outreach programs at the church. 

Martyn Joseph is a powerful singer and songwriter gifted with the rare ability to speak to the soul with his expressive and poignant lyrics. With a career spanning 30 years, 31 albums, over a half a million record sales and thousands of live performances, the versatility of his music touches genres of folk, rock, soul, folk funk and Americana, yet somehow all these labels cannot define the spirit of his music. Compared to Bruce Springsteen, John Mayer, Bruce Cockburn and Dave Matthews, he has created his own style and reputation as a mesmerizing live performer. A unique talent driven by passion, social awareness and love for his trade, his music manages to empower and speak for the many. Social justice has an essential presence throughout his music, which has been recognized with various humanitarian awards and plaudits.

Martyn Joseph ~ www.martynjoseph.net
Friday, Sept. 6th, 7:30 pm

Sydenham Street United Church, Kingston, ON

Tickets: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Proceeds to fund social justice outreach at SSUC

On sale now at Brian’s Record Option, 381 Princess St.
613 542-2452 for phone orders

info: alrankin@xplornet.ca   613 353-6650

Martyn Joseph is hailed as a raconteur weaving tales on topical concerns, as well as stories on the fragility of love, with a magical ability to reach out to his listeners through his passion and humour. Stunning reviews single him out as an unmissable solo performer whose music stays with you long after the show has ended. Martyn Joseph. A unique talent driven by passion and love for his trade, continues to write, sing and play from the heart. It’s a road he’s been travelling for most of his life and, as he often tells his audience, ‘you keep turning up and so will I.’

Martyn has won the love of audiences from USA to Europe through an impressive number of live dates, and has previously toured with the likes of Art Garfunkel, Jools Holland, Ani DiFranco, Suzanne Vega, Mike and The Mechanics, Joan Armatrading, Celine Dion and Shirley Bassey.

PRESS QUOTES

“Stunning, heartfelt music”

Bob Harris BBC Radio 2, October 2013

“Springsteen-indebted Americana, suspended folk chords glistening beneath troubadour tales, his lyrical eloquence still inspired almost 30 years on from his debut”

MOJO

“One of the most charismatic and electrifying performers in Britain today…tough and passionate”

Tom Robinson BBC 6 music

“One of acoustic music’s most original voices, and most forward looking of his generation of singer/songwriters”

Q Magazine

“A profound experience”

The Boston Globe

“Songs of social commentary as much as love, with a rootsy sensibility”

Time Out

“Written with craft, performed with passion”

Financial Times

He is one of our most intelligent writers. He gets better and better like the finest of wines”

Bob Harris – BBC Radio 2

“Britain`s best kept secret…a challenging songwriter and a compelling courageous live performer”

MoJo 4* review

What Many Musicians Don’t Realize About Social Media Marketing

Galway Street MusicianI’ve been working as a social media manager for musicians under the business name Scully Love Promo for almost seven years and I absolutely love working with them because music has always been a great passion of mine.  I’ve worked with everyone from local musicians who create music as a hobby to Juno and Grammy winning artists.  Over the years I’ve morphed from super fan girl who listened to music constantly in my spare time into a self-employed person who doesn’t have a lot of time left at the end of the day to actually discover or listen to new music online, let alone the artists I’m already a fan of. So I suspect that most people’s computer time is also extremely limited and therefore it’s extremely important that as a musician with an online presence, you don’t take your audience for granted.

Social media has completely changed the life of working musicians and has forced them to get on board with it whether they like it or not.  Most independent touring musicians don’t have time to write new music, record, produce, market and tour it themselves without a team of individuals in place to help them.  They need a manager or booking agent, a publicist, a grant writer, a social media manager…you get the picture.  It takes a village to create a successful touring musician!

Social media has also completely demolished the barrier that used to exist between an artist and their fans.  It used to be that all they had to do was make records, give interviews to the press and perform live in concert, while their agents or labels took care of their marketing. Not anymore.  The music industry has changed drastically, and now most artists have to do everything for themselves and the most important thing that needs to be addressed is the relationship they have with their fans.  Without fans, they have nothing.

I’m sure most of us have LIKED the Facebook page of at least a few musicians, singers or bands since we’ve been on Facebook and some of us have liked hundreds if not thousands of them. If you actually want to Ann Vriend Singer-SongwriterSEE the posts from your favourite artist’s Facebook page, as soon as you LIKE it, click on Get Notifications and add that page to an Interest list. You can call the list whatever you like but it will help you to filter your News Feed so that you’ll see those pages’ posts that you’re interested in when you’re ready to look.

Most musicians that I work with are wonderful at posting their own content regularly on their Facebook page and they even know how important it is to post different kinds of content, including lots of photos, videos, text-based updates, questions, links, events, etc.  Many of them are very good at having conversations with their fans and answer their comments and emails in a timely fashion.  However, quite a few aren’t so good at it. Some don’t even really want to look at their Facebook pages, or their YouTube inboxes, nor give a damn about how Twitter really works, even though they know they’re important marketing tools and that having a lot of likes, followers and views (which translates to fans) is important.  They think having a social media manager to take care of their sites for them should be enough, but it’s not. There is no substitute that is acceptable to the fans of that artist.  They want to communicate directly with the artist!  The social media manager should be there to help them post content in a timely fashion, let them know when they have messages and comments, organize lists, run ad campaigns, delete spam, monitor analytics, etc., but they should not be the ones talking to the fans.

When it comes to social media marketing, I’ve found that many musicians that I’ve worked with who have been around for a while fail to understand the need for or importance of not only being consistent and posting regularly on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, but also sharing other people’s content.  They think their social media marketing should be all about them, and that’s just not the case.  We’re all here to help each other and the more that musicians show their generosity of spirit by allowing their fans to know about who they like and support by sharing their content, the better it is for everyone.  If you’re not a household name and you don’t have a ton of cash to spend on a super professional and expensive marketing team, you need help, and that means that you need to be willing to help others as well.  That’s how it works.  That’s why we LIKE other people’s pages AS our page, so that we can use Facebook AS our page and scan through the News Feed to find other people’s content that we can share to help them.  That’s why we retweet other people’s content and comment on other people’s videos.

Musicians are special.  They are important.  What the talented ones bring to the world makes it a better place to live in.  But they’re not more important than the people who spend their surplus cash on buying their CDs or digital downloads and tickets to their concerts.  Musicians and their fans are a team and should treat each other with thoughtfulness and respect at all times, because without fans, you may be a musician, but you’ll be a lonely player performing for yourself in your bedroom.

 

Updated February 10, 2015

21st Century Troubadour by Andy White Is An ‘On The Road’ For Musicians

Book Review
Title: 21st Century Troubadour
Author: Andy White
Publisher: Lagan Press
Released: 2009
Pages: 320
ISBN-10: 1904652727
ISBN-13: 978-1904652724
Stars: 5.0

Freewheeling, mordant, rumbustious, 21st Century Troubadour is a travelogue into the imaginative heartlands of rock and roll.  It’s the journal of a slightly twisted love affair with life, art, music, the musical life and all the combinations thereof.

Its author Andy White, is a complex, Belfast-born, Cambridge educated man who travels the globe as a 21st century troubadour.  Hauling an acoustic guitar, a laptop and a 70lb. Bag – there are Rules of the Bag – with his life in it; this brilliant poet/musician spends half of each year away from his beloveds and their house on the hill in Melbourne.  He has worked with such music legends as Van Morrison, Peter Gabriel, Sinead O’Connor and Tim Finn (though he doesn’t talk much about this in the book) and was once the director of the World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) festival in the UK.  White earns a living playing his exquisite, intelligent and heartfelt songs mostly in Europe, America and Australia but has given up trying to answer the question, “where’s my home?”  Andy’s a citizen of the world, comfortable in his skin, confident of his gift, and has seen and done more in his 49 years than most of us could ever imagine.  I confess that I fell a wee bit in love with him after reading this book.

His publisher at Lagan Press wanted a journal, an On The Road, and White delivered in spades.  21st Century Troubadour is most certainly On The Road for musicians and music fans, and even more accessible to this generation than Kerouac’s masterpiece.  It’s a collection of thoughtfully written snapshots of Andy’s life as a touring musician between the years 2000 and 2008; an engaging, funny and poignant chronicle that cries out for a sequel.  In the meantime, fans like me can stay in the loop by following his blog.

As a life long music fanatic who has read countless volumes of music biographies and autobiographies, I can honestly say that no book with a musician as its central character has ever moved me more than this.  It probably helps that I’m close in age to White, have met him, and can totally identify with all of his pop and cultural references, but regardless, I had so much fun reading the prose of 21st Century Troubadour that I re-read it and savored every moment of his myriad of adventures.

Andy has an earnest, spirited, yet realistic view of the world and the people he meets in it and seems to take something meaningful away from every encounter.  21st Century Troubadour began as a tour/diary blog through which he shared his concert experiences and it evolved into a descriptive account of the places he’s been to and the assortment of remarkable characters he’s met along the way.  As he affirms at the very beginning of the book, “there is no narrative on a 21st Century Troubadour’s tour.  There is no plot, and only a few recurring characters.  Nothing is certain except that nothing is certain.”

Reading this journal, you’ll discover just how unglamorous most of a touring musician’s life is as he chocks up millions of air miles, waits in airport departure lounges, maintains a steady diet of sandwiches and KitKat bars, sleeps in hotel rooms – if he’s lucky, as he’s slept in some pretty strange places – and prays that the gigs he’s booked via email haven’t been cancelled before he gets to his destination (places like Soweto, Berlin, Glasgow, Alaska & Tokyo to name just a few) and that they’ll be financially lucrative once he’s there.  “There are lists, poems, and advice on such topics as how to check in large amounts of bags on budget airlines without paying excess baggage fees, and what to do when you’re mistaken as one of U2.”  I understand he’s also been taken for a member of Sting’s band as well.  All is he wants to know is which member of the band is he supposed to be?  His list called ‘56 Reasons Why The German Concert Will Be Empty Tonight’ and section on ‘The Hugh Grant Pack’ are particularly funny!  At the back of the book there are also two interviews with Andy that offer even more insight into this fascinating character.

It can be a rough road sometimes but Andy wouldn’t have it any other way. His hilarious tales of a troubadour’s Hell and Nirvana will make you smile, laugh, and nod your head in acknowledgement of his pleasure and pain.  21st Century Troubadour is a must read for anyone who dreams of being a touring musician, is one, knows one, or simply loves music.