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Thread: I am now full time

  1. #1
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default I am now full time

    No more graveyards for me. I am now a full time musician. I got my buskers license for granville island and have started booking next year already. I did the last 2 days of a Christmas show, they wanted me tomorrow too but I was already booked. Well I booked this show all 3 days next Christmas lol

    I did a fashion show a couple weeks ago for the city of Vancouver so am now booking with 4 different cities and I start this year with another city thing for a credit union concert series.

    It's taken me 3 years to get back in the swing but man this is cool.

    I am hiring a drummer to finish the cd, I contacted a friend that runs a studio/artist mngr to set me up. Turns out I have played with him before and he is a good friend of the lead guitarist. I bought drums and have been practising but alas I am not a drummer. I want to be technical and after I do like 15 takes and find a mistake here or there.... I could do punch ins I guess but that's not me

    So here's to a wonderful 2017. Dreams do come true
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

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  3. #2
    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Congratulations Barry! I know you've been working on building this up playing markets and such, and it's exciting and encouraging to see you able to make this step. I wish the best of luck to you on your journey. Work hard to succeed but have plenty of fun in the process.
    Technique, theory and fun, fun, fun. I love playing, studying and sharing MUSIC.
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  5. #3

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Well done, Barry. Chase those dreams.

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  7. #4
    Mediocre but OK with that Paul Busman's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Good for you! Got any sound clips we can listen to?
    For wooden musical fun that doesn't involve strumming, check out:
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  8. #5
    Registered User Eric Hanson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Congrat!
    If you love what you do for a living, you'll never work a day of your life.
    Eric Hanson
    Click #016/ Born on 2/29/08 - Sold to the next Conservator of this great mandolin!
    The search has ceased! (At least for now)
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  10. #6
    Phil Goodson Philphool's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Good job man! Enjoy today and tomorrow and then do it again!
    Phil

    “Sharps/Flats” “Accidentals”

  11. #7
    Orrig Onion HonketyHank's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Have a blast! We're all watching with a certain wistful air.

  12. #8

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Congrats... I think we all secretly wish that our occasional gigs would get people so excited that it would lead to full-time booking....you're actually doing it!

    Can you post some vids?
    2014 Stiver F
    MAS in remission

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  14. #9

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Found your website / vids...
    http://www.barrywilson.org/videos.html

    I really like your Jackson Station cover; you're great even as a one-man act... I can see why people hire you.

    I think my trio really needs to consider hiring a singer... we get a lot of weddings and "background music" gigs... your ability to sing lets you take it to the next level..
    2014 Stiver F
    MAS in remission

  15. #10

    Default Re: I am now full time

    This is awesome to hear! It is always inspiring to see someone work towards this and actually pull it off. : )
    Robert Fear
    http://www.folkmusician.com

    "Education is when you read the fine print; experience is what you get when you don't.
    " - Pete Seeger

  16. #11
    Registered User lflngpicker's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Barry, Glad to hear of your joy to share your music and your wonderful talent! Your success brings so much meaning and value to your various audiences and your efforts deserve to be rewarded with this full time gigging you have established through hard work. Congratulations, friend! Can't wait to get your new album. Dan
    Dan Brooks

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  18. #12
    Registered User fentonjames's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Right on! I envy you!


    1935 Gibson A-1 Wide mandolin
    Late 1800's Unbranded German fiddle

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  20. #13
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Thanks for sharing, Barry. We're all cheering for you.
    Steve



    "They're approaching. That's very forward of them."

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  22. #14
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    You know I need to make new videos. My ex did those for me and most were new songs I was learning so I could see what I needed to fix. I made the website and picked a few decent ones...

    I quit smoking too so that should help my voice

    The gig Sunday near killed me. It snowed all day. I had a little propane heater supplied but basically one side of my body was warm at a time. I think people felt sorry for me because I made $50 in tips LOL

    The gigs have been paying me more and I asked the lower paying ones to give me a raise

    I do a harmonica intro and break on Jackson Station.

    I appreciate this. I have worked hard to get to this point. My ex got tired of me playing all the time. December and January are still pretty skint for gigs so I have to budget for those months. I don't really want to do too many bars, the markets and special events I feel that people are paying attention and enjoying the music. Bars I feel like background noise
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

  23. #15

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Congratulations! Enjoy.
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  25. #16
    Registered User JAK's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Make sure you set up a retirement money plan = You'll be in GEEZERVILLE before you know it....
    John A. Karsemeyer

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  27. #17
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    I am in geezerville LOL. I figured I have one last kick at the cat so going to try before i get too old. I can always fall back on security/first aid when my hands don't work anymore. And I have paid into Canada Pension plan for many moons... I have been taking a music marketing course and other such classes to learn what I can. I should be at the point of releasing the album by the time I have recorded the rest of the songs.

    I have been playing a lot of originals at these gigs and I judge by crowd response which ones need work and which ones to turf. I thought "Lazy about you" would have been received better. It's funny to me but I think maybe it is taken as a bitter reflection. so it's on the bottom of the pile until I can fix it
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

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  29. #18

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Quick tip: Upload tracks and albums to an online service like Bandcamp for downloadable purchases. Print up little cards to pass out at gigs, imprinted with the page's URL or a QR code for people's phones to read and this will take them right to your page where they can make the purchase. A lot easier than printing up and carrying a bunch of CDs around. You can ask local venues and coffee shops if they'll let you place a few of the cards around, then people can pick them up on impulse.

    I noticed Starbucks started promoting certain musicians this way a while back. They'll have a stack of song-of-the-day cards with download codes on them right by the register. Unfortunately, getting this POS (Point of Sale) placement is something that gets decided at the corporate level with that whole synergy-crossbranding thing that's all the rage nowadays.

  30. #19
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Thanks Petrus. I am going to do the download thing for sure. I was planning on printing 300 cd's as well because I was surprised how many times this year I was asked for one. Discmaker does all that crap in one package incl bar code.

    I will have a look at bandcamp as I have never checked them out. I did see download cards... I am also changing my webserver... go daddy nickel and dimes you to death. I had my detailing business at web hosting canada and they offer free shopping cart system, free mailing list managers and all kinds of things like that with great support to get things going for less money

    I will have music for sale on my site but also all the itunes etc as well. I was just checking out tunecore tonight as well

    There are so many sites to wade through. I am on reverbnation, number1music, soundcloud, musicxray and most of those just want you to spend money gambling on opportunities. one of them I found a ton of fake subscribers and had to report it to the admins... I still have to check the rest out. I think I am just going to bail on that one anyway
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

  31. #20

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Congrats BW!
    Don't know how it works in B.C. but down here I found out not only do retirement villages, assisted living centers, but actual hospitals have "entertainment budgets."
    You have monthly bills to pay. One just as well get as many reoccurring (monthly, weekly, bi-annually)gigs as possible.
    That could be a writing session too. Friend of mine just wrote a jingle for a hospital! Me thinks that should've been a real good lick.
    All the Best! Merry Christmas!

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  33. #21
    Registered User Joey Anchors's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    CONGRATS! I'm working on a solo jazz/jump blues mando project. Keep up the great work!
    Coming soon.. 2020 Waterloo WL-M “SOL”
    2006 Draleon Royale - “Claudia”
    Pyramid - flatwounds


    Blues Mando Social Group - member

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  35. #22
    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    Good luck, Barry. In retirement I'm a "full-time musician" but I have civil service pension to actually pay most of the bills.

    It's a risky business. My little aphorism is "Music is a wonderful mistress, but a crappy wife." Months will come when you only find a half-dozen $50 gigs, and stretching those to cover the bills will be a challenge.

    It's not just talent, though that's an important part. It's being organized, and motivated, to do those parts of a music career that don't involve performing -- or playing at all. It's marketing, and networking, and pulling maintenance on your gear; answering the phone and the e-mail, negotiating with people who want to hire you as cheaply as possible, collaborating with other musicians who have their own agendas and their personal quirks, following up again and again until you get a gig nailed down. It's keeping records, and paying taxes, and setting aside a few bucks for the rainy day when the PA melts down or the bridge cracks, or whatever.

    Pat Donhue of Prairie Home Companion said it pretty well:

    Allen Hopkins
    Gibsn: '54 F5 3pt F2 A-N Custm K1 m'cello
    Natl Triolian Dobro mando
    Victoria b-back Merrill alumnm b-back
    H-O mandolinetto
    Stradolin Vega banjolin
    Sobell'dola Washburn b-back'dola
    Eastmn: 615'dola 805 m'cello
    Flatiron 3K OM

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  37. #23
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    I hear ya. I have been stocking up equipment the last couple years while I was still employed. you are so right about the non performance stuff. Most of my gigs now are $100 plus tips (plus the goodies I get like veggies, pasta sauce and the likes). even at the performances it helps to plug the vendors and I can babble with the best of them.

    I have calendars with contact dates for rebooking, I have the cel phone synched to the computer calendar and I have to constantly look for new ideas for places to play. Think outside the box. The days of playing pubs for me just about gone the way of the dodo

    I have written about 20 senior care centers about performing, some have budgets others want volunteers. The hospitals I have gone into have all been volunteer. I signed up to play house concerts (did my first one in October)

    while I had to pay for a busking license for granville island, I have played all around it this year and the tips have been good. that will be a supplement to the markets. and I can go busk before I go to a weeknight market. you'd be surprised how many places down there you can play in a day (each spot you can play only once but they have I believe 21 locations).

    I was also going to do skytrain busking but they decided to not accept any new auditions this december for next year. they did say they would contact me if anything changes.

    Believe me, I know it's tough. I have the butterflies and trepidation. It's like any business. my first year auto detailing I starved. I just have a plan in my head and have to remain confident

    I have to figure out this crowdfunding thing too. That's in my next online marketing lesson... I did 2 lessons today, and Petrus, bandcamp came up in the first lesson I did today hehe
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

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  39. #24

    Default Re: I am now full time

    Sounds like you've got all the details and logistics covered, Barry. That's hard work. I couldn't do that - I find it tedious if not agonizing to load in/out for each and every gig. Days like today when it's cold .. particularly challenging..

  40. #25
    Market Man Barry Wilson's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am now full time

    For busking I picked up a little apex 370 headset mic. it's awkward to play harmonica on the neck brace with one (can't breath through my nose or it comes through the amp. I put the roland mobile cube on a small mic stand and the harmonizer on that. one guitar chord to unplug, wrap the mic cable up put guitar in case. the amp has a small handle and I can carry it all to next location in minutes.

    I did get laid off from work so until the gigs get back to normal in spring, I am illegible for a couple unemployment insurance payments. Heck I have paid into it most of my life and only collected dole for about 2 months once before...

    I am super excited to have acquired the services of Terry McManus now for the drums. He is a good friend of the lead guitarist as well so there is a built in cohesion already there. The 3 of us are meeting between Christmas and New Years to brainstorm and jam a bit. I appreciate the input of pros (just as I do from everyone here). I've spent the last day and a half going over my recording budget and I am actually a lot closer than I thought I was. I am paying to have it mastered and if I just cut 200 cd's I just have to make some money to pay the musicians fees...

    I am going to sell my auto detailing equipment and supplies. I'd love to have my garage back lol
    Kala tenor ukulele, Mandobird, Godin A8, Dobro Mandolin, Gold Tone mandola, Gold Tone OM, S'oarsey mandocello, Gold Tone Irish tenor banjo, Gold Tone M bass, Taylor 214 CE Koa, La Patrie Concert CW, Fender Strat powered by Roland, Yamaha TRBX174 bass, Epiphone ES-339 with GK1

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