What’s The Best Way To Get Heard By Music Booking Agents?

May 26th, 2009

First off, the best thing to do is to just make great music that people talk about. Yes, it’s obvious, yes it’s easy to say - but it’s really not that easy to do.

Whether it’s just fans of music or industry people, developing a following where people are talking about you, and excited about you is when music booking agents are going to hear about you. Even though the music industry is spread out across the world in different cities, its surprisingly close knit and everybody is talking to each other.

It’s critically important to have an online presence.
Firstly, for your own music to be heard, but secondly to convey a perception of how you want to be seen by others. When people are talking about you and your music, the music booking agents are going to hear about “this artist” from everyone who’s talking about it, or from their industry friends. So they’ll eventually head on over to the Internet to check you out. You might consider offering a free download along with streaming music so that the booking agent could save your music and listen to it later if they wanted to.

Music booking agents get interested when they hear other people talking about music they are excited about because it provides social proof that this music is actually good. They want to book bands that will sell tickets and that’s the bottom line, so getting as many people as you can to talk about your music is going to lead to music booking agents hearing about you sooner rather than later. The key here (as simple as it sounds) is to be good.

Yes, its great to create events that get people talking about your music, but you have to be careful to avoid being sensational. These days, I would say that it’s best to build a long-term core of fans that will stick with you. Some people pull off some amazing stunts to get attention and then find themselves without any listening when they fail to pull off a stunt of the same magnitude.

All of the successful acts I have worked with have had slow steady growth and have had long careers as a result.  You definitely want people to be excited about your music, and then you want them to share that enthusiasm with others - this can be done in a multitude of ways. Ultimately, if you keep building fans and generating heat, this will lead to music booking agents going to hear about you.

Recruitment Agencies: Opportunities if you Look Like a Celebrity!

November 24th, 2009
Andy Andersohn asked:


Recruitment Agencies: An interesting job oportunity awaits if you look like someone famous-living or dead.

Has anyone ever told you that you look like a celebrity or a politician, living or dead? If you look like Abraham Lincoln, Elvis Presley or some current star there are recruitment agencies looking for you.

There are recruitment agencies that go out of their way to look like someone else. Being misleading is what these agencies do. These agencies are very specialized and provide a service like a talent agency.

Recruitment look alike agencies are a specialized recruitment agency service. These places employ celebrity look-alikes and provide the services of a booking agent for the look-alikes.

Surprisingly, celebrity look-alikes are more popular than the average person might guess: major companies have used celebrity look-alikes to draw attention to their stores or products, and the look-alikes are even used as stunt doubles for movies. It seems the uses for a celebrity look alikes is constantly growing.

Recruitment Agencies fill the same purpose for celebrity look alikes that a talent agency or a talent representative serves for an actual celebrity. Essentially, celebrity look alikes are actors and actresses; they need to book “shows” just like any other actor, so they relay on an agent. Recruitment look alike agencies simply find companies that need a celebrity look alike for any number of reasons, and then the agency matches the desired celebrity look alike to the event.

Some of the larger recruitment look alike agencies have more than one look alike for each popular celebrity. For example, there is usually more than one Angelina Jolie or Johnny Depp celebrity look alike at an agency. For less popular celebrities like Mel Gibson or Nicole Kidman, there is usually only one look alike. Some of the more famous, classic cinema and music stars also have more than one look alike at an agency: Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., Elvis Presley, Princess Diana, Marlene Dietrich, and Cher all usually have multiple look alikes.

Where do these agencies find companies that want to employ celebrity look alikes? Companies will usually approach reputable look alike agencies with an event and celebrity already in mind. Other companies may only have an even that needs some kind of spice, and they leave the choice of celebrity look alike up to the recruitment look alike agencies. The events that most companies will employ a look alike for vary greatly: cocktail parties, holiday parties, store openings, fundraisers and even conferences all regularly have celebrity look alikes in attendance.

In addition to booking celebrity look alikes to company events, recruitment look alike agencies also will employ look alikes with movie and TV companies. Some movie or TV companies choose to hire a celebrity look alike as a stunt or ****** double. If the actual actor or actress is unable or unwilling to shoot an especially difficult or gratuitous scene, a celebrity look alike may be called in to be the back of the celebrity’s head or even his or her back side.

So if you have been told you look like someone else, here’s a possible path for some extra money or even a career. All you have to do is look like someone else.



How to Become a Singer and What You Can Do Today to Make it Happen

November 22nd, 2009
Gemma King asked:


So, here’s the main problem

When people decide they want to become a singer is that they simply don’t know what to do next. Even if you have the talent to be the next big star, getting noticed by a record company, or anyone in the music industry can be tough! Many wanna-be singers don’t have the ‘inside information’, or contacts that are needed to ‘make it big’ in the music industry even though they know they have the talent to go all the way!

Don’t let your dreams pass you by

Most people sadly let their dreams of stardom pass them by without ever doing anything positive or constructive in order to achieve their goals and end up regretting later in life! It’s so easy to get caught up in the corporate ‘9 to 5′ grind that dominates the modern world and miss out on doing what you really want to do. If you truly want to be a singer, believe in yourself and make that promise to yourself now that you will go for it. You will need to take positive steps, and the first positive step I want you to make is to read this entire article. I promise you won’t regret it!

First, I want to examine the top 3 ways in which many talented (and some not so talented) people, try, and fail to get noticed every year…

American Idol / X-Factor…

There can be only one American Idol / X-factor winner every year, and there are only a few people who have ever had a career longer than 1 year even after winning the competition. The person who came second is instantly forgotten. So if you are serious about a career in the music industry then you won’t want to rely on TV competitions to be your only way of getting noticed.

Demos that just get thrown away…

You can always send of stacks of demos to record companies and other people in the industry, but since everyone’s personal computer is capable of producing a ‘demo’ these days there is no real value in a demo these days. How is your demo going to stand out from the pile that these companies receive every single day? The reality is that most demos go straight in the bin when they haven’t even been listened to! Is it really worth spending lots of money on recording your demo when very few people will listen to it?

Auditions where you don’t get a chance to show your talent…

You could always go to auditions, however you are rarely given an opportunity to showcase your talent, as a judgement is made about your looks as soon as you walk in the door. Even if you are clearly the most talented singer on the day, if your look isn’t exactly what they are looking then you will be unsuccessful. These endless chain of auditions can get pretty disheartening after a while, and if you don’t live near a major city (and I mean New York, London or Los Angeles), it can get pretty costly to attend these auditions.

The thing is that record companies ARE always looking for the next big artist to come along, as this means lots of money for you and for them.

The problem is how do you get out there and get noticed…?

Imagine this…

You come off stage one evening, and one of the audience comes up to you and says, “Hi, my brother works as a manager for “some famous band” and he’s always telling me to look out for new acts that he might be able to manage. When I heard you start singing I just knew I had to tell him about you, so I phoned him up and let him listen to you sing, and he’s asked me to give you his number, can you call him tomorrow?”

So you gladly accept this number and call this guys brother up. You arrange to send off the demo you recorded a few weeks earlier when a couple of musicians who had seen you performing wrote some songs for you because they thought you were great! Your demo is now not getting thrown in the bin at the record company, but being passed around the bosses who want to see you perform.

You then get invited to perform for these record company bosses, and because you’re an experienced and confident performer, you give the show of your life and before you know it you have a record contract.

It’s all about making contacts…

Ok, so you’re probably thinking ‘that all sounds a bit too easy’ or ‘but surely it doesn’t happen like that in the real world’. Well, I’m 24 years old, and I’ve been a professional solo singer since I was 20, and I’m currently in negotiations with a company regarding my first album release. I’ve been offered three record deals in the past however I’ve ultimately turned them down due to artistic differences. However, all the contacts I’ve made over the last 4 years have come from being out there performing. I’ve met other singers, songwriters, agents, managers and like in the example I’ve used above, family members of major recording industry managers.

Now you can choose one of three paths…

You can do nothing about your dream, and look back in 20 years and ask yourself why you didn’t go for it when you had the opportunity!

You can take your chance applying for TV shows, attending auditions and sending off demos. But you know the reasons why these methods rarely work, even for the most talented singers.

You can put yourself out there on stage and perform, get yourself noticed, build up your contacts in the industry and make things happen for yourself.

Get out there and people WILL listen to you!

So I really hope you’ve gone for 3. Now make the decision to make it happen! What is stopping you?

‘I can’t just give up work, I need the money?’ - Of course you shouldn’t give up work. You can sing as much as your voice can handle or as little as you need to to fulfil other commitments you have! Oh, and you’ll probably find the extra cash handy too!

I’m still at school, aren’t I too young?’ - No way! School is a great place to do musical stuff. It’ll be really easy to get a band together and there will be plenty of places that you can play!

There are loads of ways to get yourself out there and work as a singer, I started out doing just a couple of gigs a month while I was working during the day, although after 3 months I was earning nearly twice as much from singing as I was from my day job, so I quit! Now, I spend my Monday mornings having a nice long lie in, rather than stuck in traffic!

People LOVE musical entertainment, here are just a few examples of place you can play!

Bars Hotels Casinos Corporate Events Weddings, Birthdays and other private parties Live Entertainment Venues

The list goes on…

There are also endless possibilities when it comes to your act…

A Solo Singer Part of a Duo Vocal Group Full Backing Band

You are really only limited by your imagination…

There is ALWAYS work out there for good singers!

The thing is that there are lots of people who are very average singers out there who earn a good amount of cash from singing like this…and the people who pay these people are fed up of paying for average singers and are willing and eager to pay great money to hire great singers like you!

There are loads of ways to get out there and make money but there is more to it than just going into your local live music venue and asking to sing! In the box below I’ll be looking at some of the things you’ll need to have thought about before you head out there on stage!

Here are some things you’ll need to consider…

Will you be a solo singer or a band? - It can be easier starting out as part of a band, but being a soloist also has some major advantages? Of course you can always do both!! What kind of music will you sing? - You can pretty much sing whatever type of music you want. But you’ll need to think about what type of music your audience will want to hear! Your first gig - an exciting and nerve-wracking occasion…and you’ll want to make it go right, how will you go about this? What kind of equipment will you need and how will you use it? - At a very basic level you need to know a bit about microphones and what is the right way to sing through a microphone…its very different to singing without one!!! How will you put your set together? - You can just go out there and sing your songs in a random order, but you’ll stun audiences if you take the time and put it together properly! How will you find work? - You’ll want to find an agent, and there are agents out there who will want you on their book, trust me! What venues will you be working in? - As a singer you will need to approach different venues slightly differently.

So there you go…just a few things to think about. Of course there are other things, rehearsals, what to wear, promotional photographs etc…

Unfortunately, most people just go out there and don’t even think about half the stuff that I’ve talked about, and end up giving pretty bad, poorly presented shows. Trust me, I often work with other singers and the vast majority of them are simply not very good! These singers quickly get themselves a bad reputation, get fewer gigs, and less money as a result. It’s a real shame when people who have great voices and fantastic potential fail to think about these easy to avoid problems, and basically destroy their singing careers before they even start!

Of course this can all be avoided!

In my spare time I work as a vocal coach, and I often get asked by my students how to go about starting a career in singing. I decided to write a series of articles. These proved very popular, and so I decided to expand them, add some new chapters and turn them into a website. So check out www.becomeasinger.net

Thanks for reading,

Gemma King



Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights, Trade Secrets Protects Your Invention!

November 21st, 2009
Geoff Ficke asked:


Patent numbers are issued sequentially, beginning with the number one. Patent number one was issued to Samuel Hopkins on July 31, 1790. It took 75 years for the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to issue patent number 1,000,000. Patent number 7,000,000 was issued February 14, 2006. It took only seven years for the USPTO to move from issuance of patent number 6,000,000 to 7,000,000.

What does this mean? Simply, there is more creativity now that at any time in history. The old saw that “there is nothing new” is completely wrong. There has never been so many people and entities creating novel, unique products, technology and services, and so driven to commercialize these inventions. More patents and entrepreneurs attempting to market their products is indicative that there is more competition for successful placement.

It is essential that entrepreneurs protect their inventions. This is a form of insurance. To attempt to market an invention without covering the work with the shield of patent, trademark, copyright or trade secret protection indicates a frivolous approach that will not succeed. Investors, licensees, and investors demand the protection that these intellectual property products afford. Even if the entrepreneur is going to self-market the invention, protection is essential in order to fend off competition.

A pharmacist in Atlanta, at the beginning of the 20th century, created a formula for syrup that he sold at the soda fountain in his pharmacy. John Pemberton mixed the syrup with soda water and sold drinks of the concoction as a wellness beverage to cure aches and pains. Mr. Pemberton had created Coca-Cola. He never anticipated that Coke would become an international comfort product, the soft drink. The smartest thing John Pemberton ever did, besides inventing Coca-Cola, was to handle the secret formula for the syrup as a Trade Secret. To this day, the Coca-Cola Bottling Company zealously protects the ingredients and chemistry involved in producing the base syrup that is the essence of classic Coca-Cola.

Big Boy Restaurants protects the recipe for the tartar sauce that goes on their sandwiches, and that many customers buy by the bottle and take home. McDonalds doggedly protects the process their restaurants utilize to cut, cook and season their French-fries. William Wrigley was just as manic in keeping secret his technique for delivering powerfully flavored, long lasting, chewing gum.

Trade Secrets typically are not able to secure patent protections. The novelty of the Trade Secret is in the blending, chemistry or chronology utilized to deliver the finished product. If you have such a recipe you will want to keep this knowledge very near, as it can become very dear. If the public knew the formula for Coca-Cola, quite possibly there would be a lot of consumers keen to blend their own drink at home. Coke would not like that!

If your product has the potential and necessity to become a Trade Secret you will want to follow several very basic steps. First, write down every event related to the development of the formula. Keep a logbook with the data, dates and details of your work. As you finalize your development work memorialize all of the steps essential to delivering the finished product you wish to keep secret in a recipe or summary document. Then store in a very secure place (a safety deposit box, or safe) all of the work product and the recipe or formula.

The Trade Secret gains incredible asset value when your product becomes a market success. Selling a business built around a fully protected Trade Secret exponentially increases the value of the company. Coca-Cola, Betty Crocker, Duncan Hines, Oil of Olay, Schlitz, Dom Perignon, Ben and Jerry’s and Estee Lauder’s Youth Dew are only a few examples of famous brands built around a Trade Secret.

A Trademark is important in developing brand awareness for a product. Use a Patent Attorney when approaching the highly specialized area of seeking Trademark protection. I have never seen an entrepreneur successfully navigate the very complex workings of the USPTO. I HAVE seen many attempts to handle the process, all resulting in complete failure.

The content of a Trademark can include a customized, identifying icon, stylized brand name and a branding statement. Nike uses the famous slash (icon) the Company’s name (recognizable stylized font) and “Just Do It!” (branding statement). Include all of the elements that the public will recognize in your Trademark application. 

Look around at local, regional, national and international companies and brands that you see every day. Pat’s Cheese Steaks in Philadelphia is a local business that has gained great fame and brand recognition and protects their brand with a trademark. It is a destination for visitors to Philly. Chanel, the French haute couture brand, is internationally revered and the classic “C” that adorns every unit of Chanel product is one of the most recognized brand icons in the world. Truly Nolen, the national pest removal service, trademarks the mouse ears seen on every piece of sales collateral, advertisement and service vehicle the Company uses.

Owning a Trademark confers an obligation to police and protect the assigned mark. The inclusion of ™ on every unit of product is essential. Again, consult an attorney. Trademarks can inadvertently become vacated and lost. 

Copyrights are utilized to protect intellectual property. Movie content, poetry, music, books and plays are copyrighted. We have worked with clients on a number of video and board games. We always copyright the rules and/or the play features of the game.

Recently, Dan Brown, the writer of the wildly successful book the “The Da Vinci Code”, was suited for plagiarism by the British authors of a book about the search for the Holy Grail. The search for the Holy Grail is central to the plot of the “The Da Vinci Code”. There are full library shelves devoted to the search for the mystical Holy Grail. And yet, during the run-up to the movie release of “The Da Vinci Code” a legal action involving this intellectual property was commenced. Brown and his publisher vigorously defended their rights under their Copyright protection. They won full vindication from the court.

Producers of intellectual content properties (movie studios, record labels, book publishers) are very hesitant to accept unsolicited proposals for review. “The Da Vinci Code” saga is the reason. Legal action is rife in the area of intellectual property. We all remember things that we saw, heard or experienced from the distant, but dim past. Regurgitating a variation of that experience may find its way to the written page. Voila, was this material plagiarized? 

Mattel and Hasbro will not review ANY outside toy submissions. Is it not coincidental that there has not been a breakthrough toy introduction in years from Hasbro or Mattel? This is one of the unfortunate byproducts of a litigious society, the limits placed on needed innovations. Protect your intellectual property with a Copyright.

I recommend to my clients, before spending a dime on a patent attorney, that they perform a cursory search at the USPTO.Gov web-site by providing all obvious key words applicable to their invention. If a number of patented products come up, and they are spot-on their idea, the item might not be a candidate for a filing. If the field seems open and clean, then I advise hiring the patent attorney to conduct a professional, thorough search. The in-depth search will confirm the potential for successfully obtaining patent protection.

Patents are the preferred style of protection for most inventors and entrepreneurs. Patents (utility) are very powerful agents of defense against predators, thieves and knock off artists. Not to be a boor, but, again, utilize the services of a patent attorney. I am always amazed and amused at how many people think they can successfully write, provide highly specific 3-D CAD art, file, handle USPTO objections and move the patent through the labyrinth of a Federal Government bureaucracy. Go Figure! They waste time and money, and usually negate any opportunity to have a re-filed patent successfully obtain a patent number. 

The Provisional Patent filing is basically a letter that is placed on file with the USPTO. The Provisional filing advises the USPTO of the description of the product you are attempting to develop. The letter has a one-year life cycle and must be extended with a formal patent filing (Utility or Design) or the product is vacated forever. 

We utilize the Provisional Patent as a fully legal way to state that a product in early stage development is Patent Pending. This filing is also very inexpensive relative to a design or utility patent. A Provisional Patent filing also enables the entrepreneur to have a one year time window to test and gauge market response to the invention. If reaction is positive, then it reinforces the necessity of continuing to devote assets to further development of the opportunity.

The Design Patent simply covers art features noted in the application. This is the weakest form of patent protection. A competitor only needs to change a design element, cosmetic feature or add an artisan variant to overcome a Design Patent. However, for products that have real commercial potential, but cannot overcome prior, existing product art to obtain a Utility Patent, the Design Patent offers one potentially important benefit: the option to keep a product suspended in ongoing Patent Pending status.

We have done this on a number of occasions. A simple amendment to the initial filing means that a bureaucrat at the USPTO must find the file, pick it up, insert the amended filing detail and re-log the filing. As a result the filing goes to the back of the line and we gain months more Patent Pending protection. 

Why go through all of this? When a product is in Patent pending mode it has ultimate protection. When a patent number is issued the clock starts ticking on the effective life of protection and details of the novelty of the patented product become public knowledge. Your product is obviated. It can be amazingly simple for the less than scrupulous knock off artist to engineer around your inventions unique features and benefits. 

By keeping a product in Patent pending limbo we keep the features shrouded from any public awareness. This often leads to a first to market advantage and competition is only aware that there is a Patent pending. The added time that the product obtains, to build and extend sales traction, and begin the branding process is exponentially more valuable than the legal fees required to keep adding elementary addenda to the Design filing. You want to be first to market, and have as much time as possible to stand-alone in a market. 

The Utility Patent is exceedingly valuable, both as a protective shield against competition and as a business asset. The invention that receives a Utility Patent number from the USPTO is potentially of interest to licensees, partners, investors and venture capital. Most patented products (Utility), however, never make it to market. We often see inventions that are novel, and thus patent possible, but not commercial, or needed, or beneficial. We all know a mad scientist or two, with endless designs, inventions and patents, none of which are ever going to be a market success.

The Utility Patent protects the novel features and benefits that the application describes in great detail. The patent attorney will narrate the unique aspects of your invention. They will also mention other patents near your space but painstakingly note the differences inherent to your invention. In addition, a great deal of effort will be devoted to creating 3-D Computer Assisted Design art that portrays your product from every possible angle and graphically depicts the uniqueness of your product.

Utility Patent filings rarely sail though the USPTO without being challenged. A competent patent attorney often anticipates the weakness in a filing and has a sheath of retorts ready to address the examiners concerns and questions. This re-directs the file back into the bureaucracy at USPTO. I tell my clients that they can expect up to an 18-month wait before receiving notice of the USPTO decision. However, on several complex filings, I have seen the process take up to six years.

Believe me, it is worth the work, the wait and the investment if a successful outcome from the USPTO is achieved. A Utility Patent conveys gravitas. The invention has stood up to the most stringent scrutiny and been accorded the most highly desired verdict: this invention has import. 



Hiring A Bar Mitzvah DJ: Why The Guest Of Honor Lost His Lunch While His Parents Lost Their Minds

November 19th, 2009
Joe Pachino asked:


The following information regards the first half (first 2 hours) of a Bar or bat Mitzvah Reception:

There’s no university I know of offering a Mobile DJ major. We learn by watching, listening and doing. What works for me will be handled differently by my peers.

What’s the right way? Did you hear about the woman who rushed into the train station at 9:30 and asked at the ticket counter, “Where do I catch the 9:40 train to New York?” The agent responded by pointing: “Make a left, and you’ll be right!” “Don’t get smart with me, young man.” “OK lady, make a right, and you’ll be left!”

Huh?

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a total mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

By not hiring the “right” DJ, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll be stuck with a “left” DJ or a “wrong” DJ…but you may be booking one who plays with 51 in the deck. So what? He could be great, lots of fun and completely innovative! He’s a DJ, not a neurosurgeon. He may be inclined to view your function from an entirely innovative and fresh perspective. He wants to do things his way, so loosen the leash and allow him to do what he does best. If you’re comfortable with him, to paraphrase The Beatles: Let Him Be.

Once at a Bat Mitzvah, the mother actually carried a clipboard! Do I have to detail this? The caterer and I were ready to commit hara-kiri after 4 hours.

Please…tranquility and flexibility. The following typical reception is only a guide:

HOUR ONE (Scenario A): During cocktails/hors d’oeuvres, the music is indicative of what’s going on. Nothing! Guests don’t all arrive at once. They filter in, blend and mingle. They won’t filter in and hit the dance floor, so the music is audible, but not overt. No one’s ears will bleed. Expect a pleasant meld of Gershwin, Sinatra, big band, modern jazz, soft vocals or light classics.

Don’t expect the DJ to be on the mic cajoling your guests to dance. It’s just as important knowing when to speak as when to zip it. Years ago, I stopped booking myself as THE JOE SHOW, which was my “nom de plume” on-the-air. After all, it wasn’t me who was the center of attention. It was the child. A DJ should appreciate the benefit of a subdued approach when it’s appropriate.

HOUR ONE (Scenario B): Give the kids to the DJ for games and “their” music in the main room while adults enjoy hors d’oeuvres without music in the foyer.

HOUR ONE (Scenario C): Hors d’oeuvres are served in the foyer to all guests. After hors d’oeuvres, the doors all swing open and the party begins “cooking” with up-tempo, high energy music (NRG in DJ shorthand). You lead the way onto the dance floor with your child and then, after a rousing introduction, Grand Entrance and applause, have a few spins with your guests before the meal is served and/or between courses.

(At a Saturday evening affair, be sure to advise your DJ if you choose to have a Havdalah service. And hope he doesn’t say: “A what?”)

HOUR TWO: Preceding the meal, have the Motzi and a little “…bo-ray, p’ri hagoffen.” (Your child will be looking forward to that Manischewitz!) True story: Once at an afternoon party, we couldn’t find the Bar Mitzvah boy at game time. Everyone became quite concerned (some frantic) when we still couldn’t locate him to lift him in the chair during the Hora. It seems his cousins were sneaking him a few sips (gulps?) of the fruit-of-the-vine. He was outside. Loosing his lunch. Once he found his way back in, he couldn’t even read his Candlelighting poems! Have you ever seen parents who wanted to kill their kid at his own Bar Mitzvah?!

Prior to your arrival, the caterer and DJ will discuss the affair and review a printed agenda (yours or theirs). Hot food should be served hot, so timing is essential.

It’s the DJ’s responsibility to insure that the party flows. Let your caterers serve a delicious meal. DON’T allow them to program your function. Never, ever with a capital NEVER. Occasionally, they can be heavy handed about it, but event coordination is not their expertise. They do it occasionally because they have to deal with all caliber of DJs. But if you trust your DJ, then TRUST YOUR DJ!

Regardless of whether your meal is sit-down, stations or buffet, your child and his friends will finish eating in fifteen minutes. (Twenty, if you s-t-r-e-t-c-h it.) So have the kids served first. After they’ve finished eating it’s the ideal time, and gives the DJ more time, for games and contests and to work with the kids.



Immortalize The Voice Of A Loved One. Hire A Ghostwriter.

November 17th, 2009
Matthew Evans asked:


Imagine you’ve inherited the rights to a screenplay. You wouldn’t be alone. In fact, it’s trending — understandable since forty thousand plus screenplays were written per year for the last twenty-five years. It was only a matter of time before they were resuscitated as last bequeaths.

Your imaginary benefactor’s eulogy glorified the dedication, the passion and the sacrifice with which words were capture to the page. Words, which in a unique style, voiced muses, meanderings and observations on life. Words which were this aspiring playwright’s most valued possession. Words which, for whatever reason, you now own!

Every writer has experienced the curse of an untold story. Haunted by one’s own ideas is aggravating enough. But to be reminded of a legacy-in-waiting at every family function is insufferable. What were once whispers of time ill-spent, have gossiped into a responsibility to the family name. ‘It’s a shame to think that the only credits her work earned were in her will’ will shadow you when all you want is more potato salad.

Whichever befits your character, a stoic answer to the call of duty or a dramatic capitulation with arms in the air, be prepared for the onset of reality. Your pen has just written promises it can’t keep. If you’re a writer, time is already rationed amongst personal projects. On the other hand, if you’re ‘narrative challenged’ (as she was) the task is a bit more foreboding.

So . . . who ‘ya gonna call? Ghostwriters!

Don’t dismiss the idea too fast. Appreciate that ghostwriting has been a guiltless yet respectable option for centuries. For as long as there have been speeches, memoirs or sequels, writing has been outsourced. The cultural handiwork of ghosts has not been limited to literature. Music and painting have a history of contributions by ghosts as well.

Does it honestly matter that ‘co-authored by’ or ‘as told to’ appears on the jacket, as long as the story is engaging? Odds are the book is better on account of it.

At the next visit to your favorite online bookstore, make a point to browse the memoirs. Much of the work has been penned on the condition of anonymity. Ask yourself these questions: ‘Do you really think as many were self-written as claimed?’ ‘Is it reasonable to assume that celebrities and sports figures whose success resulted from a lifetime of practice, were suddenly as equally adept at being proficient authors?’ Picking up a scalpel would be beyond belief, so why isn’t a pen?

In the publishing and film industries, ghostwriting is ubiquitous. The Development Editor identifies extensive revisions necessary to make a manuscript marketable. On a larger scale, teams of unnamed professional writers do the same to major Hollywood releases. A script reversed from the finished production would rarely resemble the original.

Don’t let partial notions prevent further consideration of ghostwriting when you cannot do it yourself. If a qualified writer can be found at an acceptable price, is it not worth it to break the curse and free the story?

Assuming the decision to proceed, the next step is to find one. Rather than searching ‘ghostwriter’, post the writing project on a freelance database. The first approach will list services charging $10K to $30K and the project will have to fit into their schedule. The second will return multiple bids ranging from $500 to $1000 from an international wealth of eager writers.

At these rates, your scribe will be scrambling. Consequently, even the most efficient writing can hide serious problems between the lines. It may be bland without inspiration. Characters may be stereotypical or weakly drawn. Backstory and exposition may be information dumps disrupting story flow. The style may be rift with distractions causing the reader to disengage. The potential for flaws is considerable. Therefore, expect to dedicate some time for editorial review. Lean on friends and family to critique it as if it were your own. Use a standardized critique from writing sites or an editorial filtering service.

Before posting a project description, understand the differences between a screenplay and a manuscript. Any screenplay, even one nominated by the Academy is not publishable as a novel. Few people would purchase a copy of a screenplay for a good read.

Other than the directing instructions, the story content of a screenplay is essentially a subset of a manuscript. Both have a hook, characters, dialogue, a problem, a goal, conflicts, a climax, character growth and an ending. In addition to this, the manuscript has narratives which elaborate on the setting, the backstory, the characterization, the action and the emotional depth. Without these, a screenplay is mostly dialogue. In a manuscript, dialogue typically comprises 40% to 60% of content.

Therefore, the project is basically to approach the dialogue of the screenplay like the plotting or the skeleton of the story. To this, narratives consisting of the missing elements are fleshed or layered in.

The project description also has evaluation and promotional components. It is appropriate to request a sample chapter on spec, as well as, a pitch, a synopsis, and a logline.

As the bids trickle in, the evaluation process resembles the role of an H.R. dept. Desirable skill-sets include the abilities to:

make the author’s words jump off the page in their original voice and style rather than what they personally publish; experience and interest in the subject matter; package the concept so that an agent can sell it; proofread and polish their own work; collaborate; research; and of course, write.

The ability to negotiate will depend totally on the number of the bids. Concerning quality, there are no guarantees at any price. One tactic, however, can hedge your investment. Try to negotiate a progressive payment agreement. Request to have performance advances released upon remittance of predetermined chapters/pages. If the writing does not meet expectations at pre-established milestones, no commitment to continue will exist.

A second tactic to enhance the caliber of writing is to fully disclose collaboration with the term ‘co-author’. With the ghost’s name on the jacket, more effort will probably be invested. The glory or celebrity given up in exchange is fleeting anyway.

Finally, offer splitting any proceeds 50/50. Few experienced writers will accept projects on spec. If a talented novice does, it may motivate writing as if it were for a bestseller.

The services of a ghostwriter is worth considering whenever a story is trapped in a screenplay and either time or ability is scarce. If the screenplay is your own, don’t leave it until the reading of your own will. Forget about naming beneficiaries because of interest once expressed in your writing. They’re family. They were just being polite. Do it yourself while you’re alive. Let them enjoy the potato salad!



The secrets of how to hire Celebrity Talent for your Social or Corporate Event

November 15th, 2009
Carey Kleiman asked:


Assuming you have the budget to fund a private gig, what are you getting yourself into? Well, if you’re not sure, you might as well not even bother to inquire. “No agent is going to sell an act to a client that doesn’t know how to produce a show,” cautions Ben Bernstein, a personal appearance agent at the William Morris Agency in Beverly Hills who specializes in private gigs. “Ninety-nine percent of end clients don’t have production experience, and the last thing we want to do is get a band into a situation where they can’t perform.”

In such circumstances, Bernstein typically recommends potential clients a production company, such as CK Entertainment.. www.ckentertainmentinc.com Such firms can handle everything from negotiating a reasonable price from a booking agent to acting as a liaison between artist and client, to actually producing the show. “Often private clients have no idea what they’re responsible for,” notes Carey Kleiman with CK Entertainment who oversees some 40 private gigs a year. “They hear a price and they say, ‘Great!’ But when they find out what goes into mounting a show, they’re dumbfounded.”

For starters, every performance contract has a production rider, which spells out the nuts and bolts required: staging, lights, sound equipment and the rest. For “one-off” private gigs that are not coordinated within a tour schedule, bands typically prefer to rent sound equipment rather than transport their own, requiring the production company to cut deals with local sources. Every band needs a green room in which to cool out before the show and dressing rooms as well–and chances are your master bedroom won’t cut it. Then there are the catering necessities pre- and post-show for both band and their crew. And don’t forget about adequate parking for all the semis and catering trucks it’s going to take to haul everything to the performance site.

Then there’s insurance coverage in all its maddening detail. John Roskopf, senior director of Tave Risk Management in Northbrook, Ill., recommends clients conduct a thorough examination of liability exposures.

In the end, are private gigs worth it? For the true fan, there could only be one answer–of course they are! Be advised, that your true fan status doesn’t count for squat in the cut-throat music business. Indeed, it may actually be a detriment. “The true fan is the thing that scares performers the most, because you’ll be all over them,” says Carey Kleiman, managing partner of CK Productions, which has booked acts ranging from rap to country to Christian for private and corporate clients around the country.  “Whether it’s a $30,000 act or a $1.5 million act, you need to make it a professional production form start to finish.”



Add More MySpace Plays Whenever You Want Them, Increase Plays, Get Signed And Climb The Charts

November 12th, 2009
Clive Calvin asked:


If you want to jump start your myspace music promotional campaign and watch and increase your MySpace song plays you need to follow a deliberate strategy.

You can increase your Myspace music plays - Even choose how many plays go to each individual song and if you do this consistently you will get attention to your artist or band and get on the Myspace music charts.

Record labels, corporate sponsors, booking agents and music magazines all search for new music artists on Myspace everyday. Make sure you are usng this to your advantage.

Here is what you must remember:

Fact:

The number one Myspace criteria music executives use to determine If you are a possible profitable artist Is the total number of plays on your profile.

Fact:

Major labels search for new artists that are supported by large total plays count numbers on your MySpace music player

Fact:

More plays get you attention. It’s the number one factor to get on the Myspace charts. While having lots of friends on Myspace Is Important - It’s only useful if you have targeted a REAL fan base - It’s proven that the very first information looked at are your song plays!

It all starts with the plays so make sure you have a impressive Myspace music player count.

What you need to look for as you start your myspace music player promotions are the following:

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Covert War on Rock by Alex Constantine Summary

November 12th, 2009
sam cook asked:


COVERT WAR ON ROCK BY ALEX CONSTANTINE SUMMARY

(re: what the” POWERS-THAT-BE “have done to MUSICIANS for decades AND not all of them have survived it. This includes mind-control and surveillance and murder by the alleged CIA AND FBI and other forces of destruction, on civil rights activists and other AWAKE people in the WORLD OF MUSIC comments, questions, feed-back and requests are welcome)

Acknowledgements:

OPERATION CHAOS ….a draft outline found among the papers of the late political researcher Mae Brussell, provided the framework and inspiration for the study.

The decision to write it was made ten years ago, and since that time the author has gathered pertinent material toward this end, often at the suggestion of friends who had a piece of the puzzle to contribute, including Will Robinson, Marilyn Colman, and Brussell Sprouts, David X. Patrick Fourmy, publisher of Prevailing Winds, Al Marcellienme, John Judge, Lee Lewe-Lee, Cynthia Ford, Lynn Moss-Sharman, Adam Parfray, Bennett Theissen, Matty, DasGoat, Virginia McCullough, **** Farley, Cynthia Richards, the late Sharon White, Andrew and David, MIHRA, Linda Minor, and CTRL’s researchers, Vicky - Guerra Michael Putinism, Melissa Darpino, and the pertinent librarians at UCLA research library, and the Los Angeles municipal library system.

The author also wishes to thank Elliot Mintz, spokesman for Bob Dylan and Yoko Ono, reggae archivist Roger Steffans and Realist editor Paul Krassner for the admirable roles they have played in opposing some of the unimaginable acts described in this volume.. …… Alex Constantine, author

Chapter 1. A Killing Field For The Heat

Chapter 2. The Machine….The CIA And The Mob

Chapter 3. Para political Stars In The Dope Show

Chapter 4. The Death Of Cass Elliot(Mamas And The Papas) And Other Restless Youth

Chapter 5. Brian Jones ..The Rolling Stones

Chapter 6. The End Of Rock Festivals

Chapter 7. Jimi Hendrix., Political Harassment And Murder

Chapter 8. Fragrance Of Chaos Jim Morrison

Chapter 9. Joan Baez, Phil Ochs And Bob Dylan Etc

Chapter 10. Who Killed The Kennedy’s And Sal Mineo

Chapter 11. Project Walrus John Lennon

Chapter 12. The Deaths Of Marley And Tosh

Chapter 13. Gang War Sons Of Chaos

Chapter 14. False God Syndrome

FOREWARD

The corporate media harbors hundreds of CIA propagandists and fawning loyalists who find revelations concerning domestic political assassinations inconvenient and stroll by with little comment. The agency and organized crime have, for over thirty years, engaged in a program to silence popular musicians whose influence subverts the cynical thought control tactics of American government and media.

This book is an attempt to return that evidence to the historical record.

PRELUDE..

Assassination Politics of the Vietnam War period.

Former CIA Richard Ober, director of OPERATION CHAOS…

the most expansive domestic surveillance and covert ops net-work in America’s history. The intelligence sectors response to the anti-war and civil rights movements, ran covert assassinations programs as well.

The Nixon administration rose on a foundation of political murder.

The C.I.A. had assembled a thick concordia of lethal methods.

The project began with an anonymous , undated memo on assassination by “natural cause.” Knock off key people the heavily censored document specified, ” how to knock off key guys, natural causes, a declassified memo..

1 Bodies left with no hope if the cause of death being determined by the most complete autopsy and chemical examinations,

2 Bodies left in such circumstances as to simulate accidental death

3 Bodies left in such circumstances as to simulate accidental suicide

4 Bodies left with residue that simulate those caused by natural diseases.

April 2, 1977 Washington Post reported that the agency had experimented in exotic poisons.

CHAPTER 1

In 1967 a subversive form of music melded with politics in San Francisco.

Thus, destabilization tactics were summarized in a leaked memo, excerpt:

“show them as depraved” call attention to their habits, and every possible embarrassment.

Send articles to the newspaper showing their depravity.

Use misinformation to confuse and corrupt.

Provoke target groups into rivalries that might result in death.”

For the first time since it’s creation the warfare state erected by the Dulles brothers, Hoover, MacArthur, Kissinger, Nixon, etc. was threatened by an increasingly militant segment of society.

The FBI rose to the challenge.

On July 30, 1994, Intelligence files on Leonard Bernstein reveal the bureau spent countless hours examining his links with associations deemed communist to subversive.

FBI agent Jane Moore said the FBI saw the strength and power of the idea of socialism, realized it represented a very real danger to our profit-motivated corporate state and had declared total covert war against not only the denim clad revolutionaries but all progressive forces

The bureaus tactic was to cut them down or burn them out before they realized their potential.

At the federal level, the CIA. was already pursuing similar objectives under code name Operation Chaos.

Targets of Chaos

Blank Panther Movement (Geronimo Pratt, jailed for 27 yrs. for murders he did not commit. He was also a target of COINTELPRO, the FBI “counter-surveillance program)

Politically active hippies were also targets.

Many underground papers were put out of business when they were abandoned by advertisers who had been pressured by the FBI.

From 1967 to 1972 the operation compiled 13,000 files, which concerned 300,000 individuals and organizations.

The CIA directorate of operations created an index of 7 million names.

CHAPTER 2

THE MACHINE CIA AND MOB INFLUENCES ON THE ROCK INDUSTRY….

The mafia was to be enlisted for the covert war against the counter-culture. In the mid-60’s CHAOS officials and the mob both eyed the rise of political rock music. The CIA saw them as long haired communists screaming for revolution and the end to the Vietnam War. The mafia wanted more constrictive financial control over the recording industry. Top 40, the reigning broadcast format in America owes its very existence to the CIA and mafia combo. Drugs would enter the equation, plus youth and LSD with the politics of heroin and LSD drugs were only one contribution the agency has made to the American culture.

The National Security Council was patterned after Hitler’s security council , and its jurisdiction was to oversee the CIA by dictate of the NSA of 1947.

CHAPTER 3

PARAPOLITICAL STARS IN THE DOPE SHOW

Books were burned, book stores closed down, offices and social centers were broken into, artists, writers, musicians and countless hippies got dragged into court., to answer trumped up charges of corruption, obscenity, drug-abuse, and anything that might silence their voices. LSD appeared on the streets, as if on cue to destroy student descent. More potent drugs used in federally sponsored behavior modification studies (translates mind-control) also found their way to society at large. STP created by Dow-Chemical Co. in 1964 was considered incapacitating agent by the CIA Emergency wards was choked in San Francisco with freaking bohemians. PCP an animal tranquilizer, also fed to the hippies by the CIA. The Mob opened mass production labs and a meticulously organized network of traffickers to move black market drugs..

A CIA agent who claims to have infiltrated the covert LSD network, provided a clue when he referred to Height-Asbury as a human guinea pig farm. A dozen years earlier in the same city , George Hunter White and his CIA colleagues had set up a “safe house” and began testing hallucinogenic drugs on unwitting citizens. Now suddenly there was a neighborhood packed with young people who were ready and willing to gobble experimental chemicals. Charles Manson and Timothy Leary arrived in San Francisco and each had a keen interest in mind-control.

Dulles mentioned in his memo that the agency was testing drugs on groups of people. CIA personnel mingled with the drug dealers.. Monitoring stations were set up, among them was Louis J West, Jack Ruby’s shrink, West oversaw Dr Jose Delgado, author of Physical Control of the Mind and Ross Addey, a veteran of operation Paperclip (Nazi’s entry into CIA and NASA and else where), Dr. Margaret Singer of the CIA created False Memory Syndrome. All participated in the study of LSD as a politically destabilizing weapon. One CIA memo named the drug as a potential new agent for unconscious warfare. In 1967 as CHAOS was launched by CIA White House. Timothy Leary, tossed out of the army for erratic behavior, left experimenting with LSD on prisoners in N.Y. for the CIA, and donned the robes of the designated LSD media prelate. He later admitted to knowing at the time that some powerful people in Washington have sponsored this drug research. Leary was constantly surrounded by ops of intelligent agents.

CHAPTER 4

The death of Cass Elliot (of the Mamas and the Papas)and other restless youth

According to Mae Brussell, researcher, in 1968 orders went out to proceed to neutralize segments of society. including those restless youth. By 1969 the SSS (Special Services Section of the FBI), combined with the Justice department and with the CIA operation Chaos.

Thus. Manson Murders, etc. Manson joined the Process church, a Satanist church , who also worshipped Lucifer and Jehovah. It was (is) big in Hollywood at the time. (Manson clearly a mind-controlled dupe).

One FBI report on Cass Elliot marked urgent states she attended a fund raiser in Hollywood , for Peace and Justice. Cass had political ambitions and wanted to be a senator, maybe, in 20 yrs or so. An underground paper called The Realist suggested Cass was the target of political foul play. The editor Paul Krassner said, “I believe she might have been killed. She knew a lot about the incredible criminal links between Hollywood and Washington and Las Vegas.

CHAPTER 5

THE MURDER IN THE HOUSE OF POOH BRIAN JONES OF THE ROLLING STONES.

The fusion of music and politics made the stones an enemy of the state. There were infiltrators and drug set-ups and busts thus, Jagger said ” This is a protest against the system, war stems from power-mad politicians and patriots, we must end all these mindless men from seats of power, and replace them with real people, people of compassion.” The stones were stalked harassed and getting paranoid.

An odd construction crew came to restore the house of Brian Jones, the former cottage of AA Milne, author of Pooh books. They muscled their way into his private life, and had a weird hold over Brian. One worker, Thorogood, made a death bed confession, that he had drowned Wilson The tell-tale signs of cover-up by authorities are unmistakable. He was off drugs at the time. his death was not caused by a life of abuse as was claimed, he was murdered.

CHAPTER 6

THE END OF ROCK FESTIVALS

Five Months later, a music festival happened near San Francisco, and became murderous. The band would be forever tainted by the surreal violence..

Editor of Rolling Stone, Jan Wenner, put the Rolling Stones Band in touch with Melvin Belli, attorney of California well-heeled conservative base, whose eulogy at his funeral was, “a man of law against the CHAOS of life, a man of CHAOS against the law of life.” He was one of CIA’s most trusted court room wonders. Belli chose the Altamount for the Stones concert. It had all the charm of a grave yard, and not fit to draw 300,000 people.! Ralph Sonny Barger of the Hells Angels was hired to keep the peace, (an informant hit-man, who was hired by feds to kill labor activist Cesar Chavez, but was arrested instead on an old charge.) Hells Angels are represented in 18 countries now, largest crime family export. Who in 1969 suspected the Hells Angels was a death squad in employ of the political agencies? (a refreshing break from the status quo?)

At the Stone’s concert the Hells Angels beat up on the youth to excited to see Jagger and Leary arrive, an 18 year old girl was stabbed to death for allegedly having a gun, by the Hells Angels. There ended up 3 dead and many wounded..

A CANCER WAS PLANTED AND GROWING IN THE COUNTER-CULTURE

CHAPTER 7

JIMI HENDRIX POLITICAL HARASSMENT AND MURDER.

He didn’t die from a drug overdose, he was not an out of control dope fiend. He was not a junkie.

FBI COUNTELPRO was out to do more than prevent a communist menace, from overtaking the U.S.! (or to control black power movement). It was out to obliterate its opposition and ruin the representatives of the people involved in the anti-war movement, Civil Rights Movement, and the rock revolution.

Hendrix manager, Mike Jeffery, by his own admission was an intelligence agent. He frequently boasted he had powerful underworld connections. There were many mafia managed “acts”. The CIA/Mafia connection had exercised considerable influence in the music industry for decades. Hendrix wanted out of the contract. He felt he was under surveillance and felt more and more unsafe in New York, his former safe haven. His manager, thus, might have created a Toronto arrest, to silence Jimi. He preferred him to be isolated. He had always been a trusting and open person before, and now he didn’t know who to trust.

He was getting 10 grand for a 50 grand concert. Hendrix friends said Jeffrey’s would get more money from a dead Hendrix than a living one. There was also a possible million dollar insurance policy in Jeffrey’s name.

Was Hendrix murdered? The official cause of death was asphyxiation caused by vomit? The pathologist report left the cause of death open. Monica Danneman (investigator), had long insisted Hendrix was murdered. At the time of her own death, she had brought media attention to the case in a letter and highly publicized court battle. Monica’s body was found in a fume-filled car near her home, in south England. It was called a *******.

She had a lot of death threats, and people who knew her said “she didn’t believe in the concept of suicide”

CHAPTER 8

Death of Jim Morrison, lead singer of the doors.

Two years after the death of Brian Jones, Jim Morrison’s body was found in a bath-tub in his flat in Paris. Death was attributed to natural causes, possibly heart failure. Morrison’s political outbursts attracted the FBI. He had said, ” I like the idea about the breaking away or over-throw of the established order.” In another interview Manzerek (of the Doors) considered possible motives for the elimination of the Anarchistic Lizard King ” they were going to stop all rock and roll by stopping the Doors. He was considered the most dangerous because he was saying . “We want the world and we want it NOW.”

FBI harassment rendered Morrison so anxiety ridden that he had an ulcer by mid-twenties. Paranoia struck deep and it was thought he was a marked man. Bob Seymore wrote a book re: Jim called The End and conceded” you could say the CIA and the other intelligence agencies may have had a hand in the deaths of Hendrix, Joplin and Morrison etc., simply because they were the leaders of the generation of the 60’s.

A book ” The Bank of America in Louisiana” appeared in 1975, after his death, supposedly written by Morrison. Some say he survived Paris and lived a life free from celebrity and the FBI. A James Douglas Morrison, claimed to be operating as an intelligence agent for a number of groups including the CIA and Interpol, and also had connections with various occult groups. This JM2 also claims to be the dead rock star. There are stacks of official looking document, and letters between the agencies, CNN, NBC, and JM2. This claim was made by researcher Thomas Lyttle who claims to have seen what looks like authentic documents. There seems to be hundreds if not thousands of miscellaneous files under the name. No autopsy was performed after his death, a probable violation of French law. Pamela Courson, who was with him at the time, died later of an overdose that some said was a “Hot Shot” or poisoned opiate.

CHAPTER 9

JOAN BAEZ PHIL OCHS

Joan Baez survived the chaos backlash, she fully understood that political assassination could be her reward for openly castigating military-industrial masters of war. Her close friend Martin Luther King Jr., the worlds most honored civil rights leader told her and a group of activists before delivering his famed speech how the police had dumped him in the hole and it was black and he couldn’t see. They shoved food in the room but he wouldn’t eat it for fear it was poisoned starving and afraid he got on his knees and prayed and when he got up he said it didn’t matter anymore.

Kings entourage hid their pain when they knew what he meant. We knew he was going to die, and he was ready to die, and he was ready to make a commitment to Vietnam etc. He said, “I have been to the mountaintop and I have seen the Promised Land and it doesn’t matter anymore.”

Joan Baez wrote a memoir, And a Voice to Sing With, (1987) of her childhood and her father as a bright young Stanford scientist “Albert Baez recognized the danger of the unleashed atom even in the early days” He took a job at Cornell University in Ithica, New York (Cornell is the base of CIA Mind Control experiments and Joan is a survivor of ritual abuse and mind control experimentation, according to letters she has written to researchers and other survivors), a common cover for trauma-based-mind-control programming. She has a song about it

”I am paying for protection, Smoking out the truth…chasing recollections…nailing down the roof”

Baez entertained no illusions about the CIA, and promoted State of Siege, film she saw as exposing the corrupt element of AID (Agency for International Development, overseas), which funded the teaching of techniques of torture tactics in Latin America. We solicited signatures against the use of torture. Torture was made more prevalent than it had been since the Middle Ages, thus the danger was its common use as government policy. The hands of the US government were far from clean.

Joan did years of intensive therapy to confront her inner demons ,fears, insomnia, panic attacks, phobias, anxieties, etc. Therapists kept Joan glued together, to get me to the next gig, she said.

Joan’s father was invited to become the head of Operations at Cornell, which would bring him in contact with CIA Human Ecology Foundation, (re: Academic Mind Control Studies) behind the fences of the Ivy League campuses across the country. Joan said it was classified. She was not buried by Chaos, but she lived under its intolerant eye and it could silence her. An example is a mistranslation in Japanese re her comments on Vietnam and Nagasaki. The interpreter was threatened and complied. A year later sale of her records were banned from all Army PXs and when she denounced the draft on the Smother‘s Brothers Hour, she was censored by CBS, her comments cut, and CBS cancelled the Brothers soon after. The same year her then David Harris was sentenced to three years for draft evasion.

Civil rights activists were falsely linked to Communist organizations. A common smear tactic.

JOAN BAEZ AND BOB DYLAN

MIMI FARINA AND RICHARD FARINA

In 1961 Joan Baez met Bob Dylan. Whose songs had such stark political flavor. Bob nearly died in 1966 after a motorcycle accident. Joan’s brother-in-law Richard Farina did die a few months later in a motorcycle accident. It was suspicious and happened on his wife Mimi Farina birthday. He was on his way back from a promotional party for his book “Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up”. Before his death he had been producing an album to be performed by Joan, but it got shelved.

Mimi Farina, sister of Joan, is an equally talented and politically active woman who sings in prisons and goes out hands on to the poor, last I heard, and I believe Joan’s heart is also with the poor folk (My Note)

After Dylan’s accident he went thru a political change . He dropped the broadside lyrics grating on the nerves of the establishment. Mark Edmundson wrote: He wasn’t ruined by drugs. His work combines art and politics and the harshest truth about the world. He is a visionary skeptic ,he loves the promise of America and yet is disgusted by much of its reality.

His songs tell about the cane murder of black servant Hattie Carroll, the death of boxer Davie Moore, the unbroken chains of injustice. They go to the heart of the decades most recurring preoccupation ,that in a time of irreversible technical progress , moral civilization has pathetically faltered, that no matter how much international attention is focused on the macro-cosmic affairs, the plight of the individual must be considered.

Five years after the accident he wrote “George Jackson”, a fiercely driven ballad about the Black Panther leader ” “George Jackson” who was consiciously murdered by a prison guard.

PHIL OCHS ( THE OUT LAW AND HIS BRAIN) MIND CONTRO AND MPD

“U.S. agents were able to destroy any persons reputation by inducing hysteria or excessive emotional responses, temporary or permanent insanity, suggest or encourage ******* , erase memory , invent double or triple personalities, inside ones mind.”

—quote by the late Mae Brussells Operation Chaos investigator etc.

Ochs was a close chum of Bob Dylan , and thought Bob was the greatest poet ever. Ochs ,Bob, and Farina set out on the Folk minstrels path in the village in the early 1960’s. Together with others they dragged folk music away from the migration camps and union halls into direct confrontation with the Eisenhower’s looming military-industrial complex. Ochs denounced the American politics in the “Cops of the world”. song

” and when we’ve butchered your sons boys, have a stick of gum boys, we own half the world….”OH CAN YOU SEE”? AND THE NAME OF OUR PROFITS IS DEMOCRACY.

He was the ultimate dissident song quote” the comic and the beauty queen are dancing on the stage .The raw recruits are lining up like coffins in a cage.” “Oh we are fighting in a war we lost before the war began”

Not long before he died, one night after too many drinks, he drew down the CIA Director Wm. Colby, director of the murderous Phoenix Project in Vietnam. He claimed he put a contract out on his life for 100,000 dollars. “I told Colby he’s got a half of year to live or get out of Vietnam or he is dead. They can kill me but he is dead” he said.( He as well was certain that Gloria Steinem, editor of Ms. magazine and famous feminist is a CIA agent) Ochs was founder of the Yippee party, sang with protesters, and appeared as a witness for the trail of the Chicago Seven. His lyrics were considered so inflammatory that he was banned from the air-waves. The FBI did not refrain form amassing a huge file on him, and the feeling that he was never alone unnerved him. He wrote ” take everything I own, take the tap from my phone, and leave my life alone, My life alone! He was tarred as a communist and a threat to national security. His friends said Ochs was convinced he would be assassinated. He was driven to drink by the radio black-listing his music and the ongoing surveillance and harassments and his nerve gave out. He lived in a perpetual state of paranoia His vocal cords were crushed by thugs.

He developed a right wing pseudo personality called John Train who he wrote about

( Beth’s note: Who created John Train? Was he like his good friend Joan Baez, a mind-controlled MPD(DID), from abuse and experimentation? On the first day of summer ,1975,” Phil Ochs “was murdered in the Chelsea Hotel by John Train, Ochs said in a taped interview. “for the good of societies public and “secret,” he needed to be gotten rid of.” He also made reference to his Pseudo personality in song fragments in an album never recorded re: “Phil Ochs checked into the Chelse a Hotel, there was blood on his clothes, Train Train Train, the outlaw and his brain. (my note: I have read accounts of cloning since the 50’s. Lots of hi-tech knowledge kept secret, including in Jim Keith’s book “Secret and Suppressed”).

Ochs actually now believed he was working for the CIA., writes biographer Marc Elliot.( Ochs also referred to N.Y. Cornell Hospital in mysterious lists) “Train hinted that if Ochs had been a commercial success “they”(CIA) would have killed his host personality.. ” Colby and Co. would have been more than happy to put a slug thru his head at that point, “said Train, the alternate personality. Ochs committed ******* on April 9, 1976, by hanging. This was the same year of the book ” the Control of Candy Jones” by Donald Bain., ( a study of CIA mind control experimentation, Candy was also an MPD, created personalities, who carried out covert assignments , a marionette with an inner **** personality. She worked without her knowledge as a CIA op. for 12 years. Her final post-hypnotic command was suicide, which was intervened by her husband, talk show host John Nebel. ( the book is out of print, I have a copy) It is very probable that “John Train” was programmed to kill Philip Ochs the host personality.

Another musician with repressed memory of child-hood trauma was Peter Townsend (”Who” guitarist). In 1999 it occurred to him that certain phrases from rock opera “TOMMY” were not fiction but his life. He filled in the blanks from his childhood amnesia.

CHAPTER 10

WHO KILLED THE KENNEDYS AND SAL MINEO (REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE)

Actor Sal Mineo was stabbed to death in a parking lot after signing on to play Sirhan Sirhan in an upcoming movie regarding JFK. (CIA assassination and post-hypnotic programming were the major themes of the movie.) Elliot Mintz talk show host for ABC, later Bob Dylan and the Lennon’s publicist was buried in research with Mineo, regarding JFK killing. They became convinced Sirhan was innocent. The movie production disagreed and Mineo pulled out of the picture. After he was killed the media revealed in his secret life of bi-sexuality, and the murder was taken as homophobia. *** Bars were closing in fear, and Hollywood stars took refuge behind locked doors.

Michael Ruppert a former LAPD officer left the department to expose his CIA trained colleagues. He claims “Sirhan was hypno-programmed using hypnosis, drugs and torture by Rev. Jerry Owen and CIA Mind-Control Specialist Wm. Bryan at the stable where he worked months before the shooting. The LAPD concealed evidence implicating the CIA in shooting. The channels of the intelligence world swarmed with crooks and killers.

Conservative Evangelist Billy Graham was Presidents Nixon’s celebrated “spiritual advisor”. Then there was LA’s gangster corrupt public servant and wealthy gambling czar Mickey Cohen.(who “claimed “to be a friend of Sal Mineo) The former hit-man Cohen contacted the press after Mineos death t o boost that he was his pal. Cohen was also chummy with Nixon, and his entourage. In 1968, Cohen was coined the godfather of the West Coast Mafia gambling ops. When Cohen was close to death he opened up to investigative reporter Chuck Ashman, and he said, “Mickey Cohen told me the tale of his being paid off to fake a conversion and dose of Christianity for Billy Grahams N.Y. crusade. Two of Graham’s staff had passed more than 10,000 dollars to Mickey and his family.” We found the dates and the amounts and even the checks” Cashmon said.

Cohen was the first bridge linking the killers of Robert Kennedy and Sal Mineo. He was on friendly terms with Carlos Marcellos, mob boss, who ran with David Ferrie, CIA corrupt ops., who was investigated by Jim Garrison in the connection of killing of JFK. Cohen was also a chum with Jack Ruby. Cohen was also a friend of Melvin Belli, Jack Ruby’s defense attorney. He also controlled the Santa Anita race-track where Sirhan was employed. Mickey Cohen’s circle of friends and his appearance in the limelight after the Mineo killing begs question on Hollywood power brokers. Sirhan and Cohen were close to Desi Arnez, (Producer) of I Love Lucy .Arnez was an anti Castro Cuban exile leader. In 1966 Sirhan wrote in his notebook that he landed a job at the stables Corona Breeding Farm co-owned by Desi Arnez, Buddy Ebsen, Dale Robertson, ultra conservatives, and TV personalities were well acquainted with Sirhan. Sirhan was known as a fervent anti-communist. Attorney, Russell Parsons, Sirhan’s attorney, showed no effort to make known that Sirhan was in the wrong position to kill senator Kennedy, he was shot from behind and Sirhan stood in front of Kennedy.

CHAPTER 11

PROJECT WALRUS..JOHN LENNON..

Mark-David Chapman chose to plead not guilty due to following the direction of his voices.. His attorney J. .Marks, punctuated the plea “by reason of insanity”. Chapman testified “I can hear their thoughts, I can hear them talking, but not from the outside, from the inside” Not one of the three psychiatrists at the trial explored the possibility of Mind-Control. In 1977 Chapman lost his fundamentalist religion and became a Satanist..

At 19, 1n 1975,Chapman signed onto the YMCA,(international camp counselor program) and was sent to Beirut where he allegedly received instructions in lethal arts at the CIA training camp school of terror. (there was a known “experiment in Mind Control unit” for the army in Lebanon.). In 1980 he surfaced in New York, and mailed a letter to an Italian address. The Dakota (residence of the Lennon’s) was given as a return address. There was a reference to his” mission ” in N.Y.. It was returned to New York, the address not found in Italy, where it sat for three years in the dead letter bin, and finally delivered to the Dakota. Yoko Ono glanced at the letter and dropped it in her deranged file. In 1983, head of security, Mahoney, found the letter. This was evidence of premeditated murder and conspiracy. The letter vanished and reappeared slightly altered, the post-date now was 1981. The “mission” statement was missing…

Elliot Mintz, friend of Sal Mineo ,was instrumental in exposing “Project Walrus” as a conspiracy regarding Lennon. He had been Lennon’s chum too and publicist since 1971 Mintz recalls that some of Yoko body guards were at the time New York Police officers.. It is very difficult for a private citizen to legally possess a weapon in New York. The people who can are off duty officers. It is thus, a common celebrity arrangement. There were many files with missing contents at Yoko’s apt. after Lennon was killed. Listening devices were planted at the Dakota and once swept clean would reappear. There had been numerous attempts on Yoko’s life. One man was arrested at airport who had made a call that he was coming to finish the job and kill Yoko and Sean. There were also calls made to tell her body guards were going to kill her. Sean Lennon said, “I grew up afraid my mother and I were going to be killed”.

After John’s murder the first promoting of Project Walrus was the ruining of his reputation. John had known he was wire-tapped and was paranoid. After Watergate he filed a lawsuit for wiretap and surveillance and made some progress. Justice Dept. never would admit it actually carried out the wiretap and blamed it on other possibilities. After he got his green card he gave up the litigation. Lennon overcame his fear of federal harassment and gave public statements that were anti-republican.

Killing Lennon was only the first step. All that he signified must be defaced. That was the principle objective of Walrus. His diaries were stolen and returned later with extra entries and some entries altered. Fred Seaman wrote a defamatory book on Lennon. Seaman was to be executive of Lennon’s archives, and much was feigned regarding their bond. He told friends he was going to discredit Ono at all costs. The goal was to drive her to a nervous breakdown and discredit her attempt to set straight the public record. The walrus crew anticipated immense profits. Dead Lennon’s money’s The events at the Dakota began to sound like the Movie “Gaslight”..( in which a husband tries to drive his wife crazy by reality distortion) Yoko began sleeping badly. One of Yoko’s assistants, wracked by stress began packing a gun at all times. He said ” you do not know how big this is. The people doing this are too big to fight.” To discredit Lennon and Yoko and the Peace movement was a major part of Operation Walrus. (but it didn’t and IT WILL NOT)

CHAPTER 12

WHAT CHA GONNA DO?..THE DEATHS OF MARLEY AND TOSH.

Quote: “Vampires do not come out to bite your neck anymore, instead they cause something destructive to happen that will spill blood., and those invisible vampires will get their meal ” Peter Tosh.

Peter Tosh , like Marley was a widely influential civil rights agitator, and like other black activists before him he was gunned down. He died in 1987 at age 43. He was upset with the treatment of his people. Tosh went to Trench Town to live with an uncle after the aunt he was living with died. It was there he met the young Bob Marley, and taught him to play guitar. They got together with Bunny Wailer and the trio called themselves the Wailin Wailers. They were drastically underpaid. Record producers are notorious for pocketing money. (dem pirates and dem thieves). Peter Tosh always let his feelings be known. He cared more about principles and morals than popularity and fame. He said “they know I do not support POLITRICKS and games, my duty is to unify the people.” He and Marlew had some wrangling and he left the group, and went on his own. Destabalsation tactics were employed, and political violence and sabotage etc. from the CIA with pernicious attempts to wreck the economy of their country.. The new weapon and the new menace was destabilization..

Bob Marley held onto the Wailer name and took on new members. The peoples National Party asked them to play at Smile Jamaica concert. He agreed.

In Nov. a death squad came to Marley’s home and started shooting. They shot bullets into his manager, and one in his wife’s’ Rita’s head , as she tried to get their 5 children out of the house. They survived. The last bullet creased Marley’s ****** below his heart and drilled deep into his arm. Marley would sing “Ambush in the night, all guns aiming at me.” This did not stop them performing at the Smile Jamaica concert.. (”War”) “Until the ignoble and unhappy regimes that now hold our brothers, in Angola, in Mozambique, in subhuman bondage, have been toppled utterly destroyed…everywhere is war……

Carl Colby , son of CIA head Wm. Colby, came to the concert and posed as crew and got back stage where he gave a gift to Marley, a pair of boots. Former black Panther Lee Lew-Lee was close to Marley and he thinks Marley’s cancer started with the boots He claims there was a link of copper wire attached to the boots, which hurt his foot when he tried them on and had to be removed..(it might have been treated chemically with a carcinogenic toxin. Marley later broke his toe and found out it was cancerous, it spread. He did not trust main-stream medicine and continued to perform. He knew by 1977 he was dying and compressed a lifetime of music into a few years

Something of a Caribbean CIA POGROM was underway via Kissinger and Co. There was emphasis on psychological Ops. which became arson, banking assassination disruption of the now Manley’s democratic socialist rule. Political violence was stoked and arsenal of weapons supplied. This was all mostly financed by Hard Drugs, which disrupted the Rasta movement and marijuana. They wanted it legalized. Their chosen weapon in the Rasta Movement was free expression and they were crucified for it. Tosh was busted and beaten almost to death and it made his music more vengeful.. Secret Police and the CIA tailed him thru it all. Grotesque human rights violations were commonplace. Marley found out he had a brain tumor. He sang ” these songs of freedom is all I ever had, emancipate yourself from MENTAL SLAVERY. “He was observed rubbing his forehead and grimacing while performing. One woman explained “Hidden lasers were fixed to spotlights above the stage and burned out his brain” Fellow

Rasta’s heard about an alternative doctor in Jamaica, who advised Marley to talk to a Doctor Josef Issels, a holistic immuno therapist in a Bavarian village. He went. The Dr. said “I hear you are one of the most dangerous black men in the world.” Issels medical career did not hold up under scrutiny, during WW2 he had worked hand in hand with Dr. Mengele (angel of death) in research in Poland, at the Auschwitz camp. The Wailers found this out after his death.

Issels told Bob he could cure him and did sadistic procedures that left him in agony. After visits the Wailor’s said “he is killing Bob” He also cut off his dreadlocks. He was in the hands of the doctor who had been the accomplice of Mengele in horrific Medical experiments against what they considered “sub humans”. His mother said ” he was starving and wasting away , and he would fall into fits of shaking, etc” Marley weighed 82 pounds on the day of his death. May 11, 1980. (HIS MUSIC LIVES ON)

Peter Tosh found the bloodshed and hypocrisy of death squad justice in the Third World unbearable He was obsessed with the hidden evil. By 1987 the year of Tosh murder Jamaica musicians were censored by the prevailing politics. Witnesses and friends insist his murder was a political hit. They were convinced Tosh was killed for his statements on Human Rights, Black liberation and the legalization of Marijuana. Tosh was throwing a small party at home when Mike Robertson, a local radio host answered the door. Leppo Leppan, an old buddy from Trenchtown days stepped in. Behind him were two clean-cut looking strangers, professional hit men, they insisted on talking to Tosh at gunpoint. Shots were fired and three people were dead.

Shortly afterward the N.Y. City apartment of Tosh was entered and burglarized, (such as the aftermath of Hendrix death). Two out of three of the Tosh killers remain at large. One hit man was said to be a policeman, (of course Leppan was convicted.)

Chapter 13 GANG WAR Sons of Chaos.

Rap artist Tupac Shakur was gunned down at a stop-light in Las Vegas in 1996. It will be evident re: the police strategy of disinformation, ignoring of witnesses, and the presence of undercover agents from L.A. and N.Y. at the murder of rapper Notorious B.I.G.

This suggests that both rappers were murdered by hit squads under the sanction of federal officers. Tupac’s father said “It was clear to me form day one that the Las Vegas police never had any interest in solving the case of my sons murder..”.. It was said “ we dealt extensively with COINTELPRO (FBI) issues. We worked around a lot of political prisoners and the black liberation movement over the years. This shaped Tupac into the person he was. The family operated the “Centre for Black Survival! They had a youth group called “The New African Panthers” and Tupac became the chairperson for it.”

The agony of the Rap industry was exacerbated in March 1997 by killing 24 yr. old Brooklyn rap artist Notorious B.I.G. in L.A. This happened after he had attended the annual ‘Soul Train’ Music awards, by an unidentified gunman. Tupacs father said in a letter (excerpt)”we do know that Brother Biggie was a part of an industry that has been under attack from the highest form of government officials.” ” They have targeted Tupac, Sister Souljah, and IceT. Ice Cube, just to name a few. This is reportedly due to the content of the lyrics. “IF” this was the case why would devil-worshippers (music-artists) not be hounded out also?????(They openly worship the devil in a so-called God fearing country.) Their lyrics preach mayhem, destruction. Death to parents, and even government; whereas our rapper loved-ones wanted to explain their pain and identify from where they came, with hopes for a better tomorrow; if all things were fair.

We believe that history has demonstrated that the murders of black people (young and old) who can have a profound impact, those who refuse to bow down, have been targeted by government at its highest level.

What we must understand is that our warriors are needed when it has been proven beyond contradiction that the C.I.A. were principal importers of ***** Cocaine and Cocaine into the ‘HOOD’, with blatantly ****** drug laws, to set into motion tactics of genocide to destroy or lock away our brothers and sisters or the rest of their lives.

Pay attention to the game that is being played on/against us! SEARCH FOR TRUTH! Don’t look at who shot them, but why? Don’t be fooled by the media that has never shown real concern for our welfare. DR. MUTULU SHAKUR

Mutulu Shakur’s conviction that SECRET POLICE killed his stepson and Notorious B.I.G. proves to be increasingly feasible.

Chapter 14 FALSE GOD SYNDROME

DEATH OF MICHAEL HUTCHENE

…. 1997—–M. Hutchence was found tethered by his neck to a door frame. He too was an activist, who willed the lion share of his fortune to Amnesty International and the Green Party. He was found at the Ritz-Carleton in Sydney Australia. The media concocted scenes of SM but he was found with a broken hand and lacerations and had taken a bad beaten. His friends said he was not depressed and he was against *******. There were rumors of the “MOB” involved in his investments possibly unknown to him. He died penniless due to investments and trusts and his family had to fight for his money.

He knew Gianni Versace, famous designer who was gunned down, and was also said to be possibly mafia involved, although he denied it angrily (A dead mourning bird was found by the Versace body, a symbol of a hit-man).

Diana Spencer, the Princess of Wales, and a month before her own death attended the funeral of Versace. As it happened another friend of Hutchence was Dodi Fayed , someone said to have mob links. Dodi’s uncle was arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi of the Iran-Contra Fame.

Dodi and Diana were killed in a car accident four months before Hutchence died.

THE DEEP POLITIICS OF MUSIC

Roger Bunn director of the Music Industry, Human Rights Assoc. (MIHRA), in the U>K> lives in the eye of the corporate music beast. These are excerpts from letters form Bunn:

“Re: M. Hutchene…”so that’s it, huh? Death due to hanging? Sort of unusual that…even for the music industry. Those wonderful featured artist really light up the sky every now and then. Maybe we should consider making the poor darlings an endangered species? When they reach their peak it probably means worth more to the conglomerates dead than live. Think about that next time you go out to buy your conglomerate primitive/folk music, or a well-known movie…. you add strength to the cartel Monopoly. The music industry turns over 120 billion dollars a year. In the music industry there is no such thing as Real Competition”.

“Music Industry Is The Richest Industry On The Planet. By providing the public with a marketing of.

FALSE GOD SYNDROME

When artists “usefulness” to a conglomerate is over things can get a little sticky. (End of quote)

MY NOTE……THIS PROJECT OF SUMMARIZING THIS BOOK HAS BEEN ONE CLOSE TO MY HEART, SINCE I HAVE LOVED MANY MUSICIANS (AND WORLD OF FAME PEOPLE) UP CLOSE AND FROM AFAR. I HAVE SEEN HOW THE WORLD OF FAME WORKS AND I THINK IT IS SOMETHING THE PUBLIC SHOULD KNOW. THEY ARE PEOPLE FIRST AND FOREMOST AND HAVE ALL THE SAME TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS THAT WE HAVE, (AS CAN BE SEEN BY ALEX CONSTANTINES BOOK.). MY GRATITUDE TO YOU ALEX…..



Hiring a Bar Mitzvah DJ: Taking The Shine Off Of Those Glossy Brochures

November 12th, 2009
Joe Pachino asked:


Regarding a Disc Jockey’s full color mail-out brochure, does High Gloss = High Cost? Not necessarily. And very often, the opposite is true.

It’s not a certainty about the one you may receive, but national printers sell professionally designed, glossy brochures to DJs by exclusive territory and classification (Wedding, Corporate, etc.) and simply plug in each local DJ’s logo and phone number. The descriptions and photographs are usually generic! Those same partygoers sure get around.

You can tell by noting if specific DJ information is found on the front and back covers ONLY. Is it sneaky? Is it credible? Does it matter? Should you care? You decide. It’s not the end of the world, it’s just another DJ sales technique, or it may indicate an agency.

If you choose to speak with an agency and bypass discussion with the DJ who will perform at your party, you’re walking on eggshells. So watch your step!

Agencies subcontract a crew of DJs (keeping a liberal amount of the fee for booking them). A benefit agencies promote is that they’re able to provide a replacement in the event of an emergency. OK, so? Although they stress the fear factor to favor themselves over an individual, an emergency isn’t probable. You’re not booking an insurance policy. Besides, all decent single operators network too, and can offer the same assurance.

So is it money well spent? Remember the old Wendy’s commercials: “Where’s The Beef?”

What else do they offer? If you’re hiring a “name” who works exclusively for the agent, that’s fine. But if you’re getting a guy from their stable, find out who’s been assigned to your party. Does he favor a tuxedo or a backwards baseball cap? Even if the agency has been around for years, he may be newly trained or hired last week. You’re spending big $$$…buy experience!

If the agency won’t allow you and your assigned Disc Jockey to speak together without the agency as an intermediary, assume the worst and walk away. Quickly. The DJ will be more frank and/or you’ll be able to judge his experience (or lack of experience) without Big Brother watching (or listening).

At a large catering hall which divides into four separate banquet rooms, I recently ran into a local booking agency’s DJ as we were both unloading our equipment for different affairs. He came in to check out my set-up and did everything but drool. I walked into the adjoining room and saw his “gear.” It looked like a DJ starter kit from Circuit City. Actually that’s unfair to Circuit City. Make that Toys-R-Us. (You know something? It’s almost unfair to Toys-R-Us, too!)

He volunteered to me that the agency was paying him a $35 per hour fee. Here’s a fellow who was content to go home with $140 in his wallet that night (before taxes). Is it any wonder that he couldn’t afford a professional system?

Anyone who’s been around for a while wouldn’t pack up his vehicle for $140. The key is that the agency booked the job for $400 (”Return Your Contract Within Ten Days And Receive A Special Discount From Our Regular $500 Fee”). Of course, what the customer ultimately received was an $140 Disc Jockey, not a $400 (or $500) DJ. Please note: This one example may not be typical and it’s certainly not meant to impugn respectable and reputable agencies, of which there are plenty. But, it is not extreme.

What do you think would have happened if this DJ received a last minute phone call from Agency “B” for a job that would pay him $250 cash that evening? It’s obvious. He’s a mercenary and a likely no-show nightmare for you. Re-read that last sentence.

And if Agency “A” subsequently fired him, so what? What’s Agency “A” going to do? Take him to court for $140? He’s a subcontractor out for himself with no vested interest in the agency. Nor is he indebted to you. He’s never even spoken to you! He doesn’t have a conscience. What he would have is an extra $110 in his pocket for the same amount of work. But where would that leave YOU?

Be aware, not wary hiring through a booker. Do they have office space or handle everything over the phone? Can they offer advice regarding invitations, photographers, light shows, dancers, sign-in boards, prizes and party favors? They’re a bargain and worth the extra expenditure if they assume the full burden. I want to be clear: many agencies are conscientious and exemplary. If you’ve gotten personal referrals–perfect! Dump it all in their lap. If not, PLEASE request professional references. Not glossy brochures.



Marketing Tips for Actors - Knowing When to Leave!

November 11th, 2009
Gwyn Gilliss asked:




Marketing Guru, Gwyn Gilliss

TAM, The Actor’s Market

My first Broadway audition was for a musical. I was very young and the experience –now it seems hilarious- at the time, was a nightmare. I was not as prepared as I should have been. I made four tragic mistakes:

1. Accepting an audition for a role that wasn’t appropriate for me

2. Not being ready for the audition…I whipped together a song two days before

3. Choosing the worse material, a song from the actual show that was not within my range and ability

4. Not knowing when or how to leave (or just not going in the first place)

I could chalk it up to youthful exuberance, false courage, wishful thinking, optimistic delusion or just GREED. I WANTED so badly to get work as an actor that I put myself in an embarrassing and ridiculous situation. Instead of telling the agent who called that I wasn’t really a strong singer, not ready for a Broadway audition and losing the trust of that agent I instead jumped in and said, “Great! I’ll be there! THERE was the Shubert Theatre-the most respected and classic of the old theatres on 46th St-the heart of Broadway. Almost every famous actor in the history of the New York Theatre had appeared on this stage-Billy Burke, Helen Hayes, John Barrymore, Lynn Fontanne- so many greats! I was awed!

I had the chance to audition to replace the leading lady in a long running successful rock musical (an era long gone), so I naturally chose the “hit” song of the show made famous by many great singers. It was a passionate love song requiring a strong belt voice. I was a light lyric soprano with a weak/non-existent belt voice. Wrong choice!

I went with my coach who drained my confidence when he asked every 10 minutes if I really wanted to do this?

They called my name. I stood on the stage feeling euphoric. Broadway! My coach stood in the wings as the accompanist started. Why wasn’t my coach playing? Why is the tempo so fast? Why is it in a different key? Oops! Why was the piano on wheels rolling across the stage in front of me? I had to keep stepping to the right to avoid being hit by the piano while I also attempted to keep up with the unfamiliar pace, hit the notes and breathe and…and wham! Gasping, I came to a final line in the song, the lyrics of which said it all…” KNOWING WHEN TO LEAVE MAY BE THE SMARTEST THING THAT ANYONE CAN LEARN…GGOOOOOOOO!”

Within seconds I heard a strong voice from the back row of the orchestra yell, “RIGHT!”

Audition over. Silence. My face was red, blushing, humiliated, close to tears, still out of breath, gasping. Through the mist I felt the arm of my coach who had stopped the rolling piano and was leading me out of the theatre via the backstage door.

Lesson Learned?

Know your abilities and your limitations.

I NEVER accepted an audition again for anything unless I knew I could play the part, and knew in my heart that I was going to WIN and book that job. And I stopped trying to be a Broadway belt singer when it wasn’t me-didn’t have the chops and wasn’t interested in the work in the first place. No more time and money wasted on expensive musical coaching!

It would have been equally disastrous if I had tried to audition for Chorus Line as a dancer NOT being a dancer!

Instead, I focused on the areas in which I was trained and which suited me-Classical and modern theatre, TV and Film. I never stopped auditioning, booking, working and succeeding!

This is the checklist I created to make sure I was always ready and I want to share it with you:

1. PREPARATION - get the script and know it. Make the strongest possible “decisions” about the character, the motivations and emotional arc of the scene. Having a strong structure gives you freedom during the actual audition.

2. VISUALIZATION - see yourself clearly performing the piece with joy, energy, awareness.

3. ENTRANCE - Walk into the room with an aura of confidence and strength. No doubts. Say to yourself, “I can do this excellently. You are going to hire me!”

4. BEING IN THE MOMENT AS WELL AS IN THE CHARACTER - Play it as it lays, go with the flow, be open to all possibilities during the audition. Know that there will be surprises with any audition partner or reader.

5. ENJOYING THE PROCESS - Whatever happens find pleasure in it. If the director asks you to do it differently -OK, that’s cool. If they ask you to come back –good, that’s cool. If they say you are the wrong type, sorry! - That’s cool. Just leave. You did your best work. That’s all you have to do. Having the right attitude brings amazing results and future jobs. People remember people they like, respect and trust. There’s ALWAYS ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER ROLE.

6. KNOWING WHEN TO LEAVE…AND HOW. Learn to say thank you, smile and head slowly to the door. Never look back. On to the next audition. Never dwell on how it could have been.

Good auditioning! Successful Marketing!

Gwyn

©Copyright Gwyn Gilliss 2009.

All rights reserved