COREnered: Q&A with Mike Barry

In his new album, The Sun, The Moon, The Stars, The Sea, Michael Barry covers all the bases, and all from the recording studio in his home in Canada. Barry’s lyrics and sound are ethereal, floating from land to sky and day to night, as the album title hints. Read on to find out more about the talented artist’s new release, and why he is drawn toward creating a story easily accessible to all ears.


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The Magic of Copyright by John Snyder

John Snyder is the founder and president of the Artists House Foundation, a nonprofit music company dedicated to creating educational presentations in several areas, including instruction for instruments, master classes, careers in the arts, and legendary performers

The following article is the beginning of your journey to self-reliance. Understanding your rights under the Federal copyright statutes is the first step towards creating revenue from those rights. In the articles that follow this, we will continue to drill down into the topic in coming weeks by exploring each right individually, its limitations and opportunities, how these rights can be made to produce income, and the agreements that govern those transactions. It’s a beautiful trip and you’ll love it, so, bon voyage! Feel free to comment and ask questions and tune in for our weekly webcast beginning at the end of August for more information and interaction.

The magic of copyright is simple: you render an original work in a tangible form, that work is copyrighted. Under federal copyright statutes you have, at that moment in time, six exclusive rights that attach to that work that you own. (That’s assuming you haven’t already somehow managed to sign away your rights.) The words “original”, “work”, “tangible”, “author” have definitions, rules and exceptions, but it’s pretty simple really: if you made it up and you made it real by writing it down or typing it in or recording it, it’s copyrighted and it’s yours.

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COREnered: Q&A with K. Sparks

By Daniella Kohavy

Tune in to this week’s COREnered as we take you to a seemingly far off place; a musical place void of “autotune and skinny jeans,” at least so says featured artist K. Sparks, a rapper who hails from Queens and has a serious love-affair with hip-hop. Kick back, relax and enjoy yourself while reading what K. Sparks had to say about his flair for smooth lyrical flows over bop-tastic, jazzy beats.

K. Sparks - Positive Over Negative

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Tips for Songwriters: Prepare your songs to show to artists

Cliff Goldmacher is a songwriter/engineer/producer/author and owner of recording studios in Nashville and New York City.  Download Cliff’s free e-book, “The Songwriter’s Guide To Recording Professional Demos”

As a result of recording and producing hundreds of demos, I’ve learned that it is always better to “prepare and prevent” than to “repair and repent.” Here are a few steps you can take to help make your demo recording experience more successful.

Song Preparation

It may sound obvious but make sure your song is FINISHED. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had clients come into the studio only to start rewriting a part of the lyric or melody. It is significantly less stressful (and quite a bit less expensive) to write a song when you’re not paying the studio an hourly fee.

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Q&A with Shaimus

Geek rock is taking over Los Angeles, and it goes by the name Shaimus. But LA isn’t all they’re taking over; Shaimus has had music on Guitar Hero and Rock Band 2, and you may have caught some of their music in your favorite TV shows and films. Read on as COREnered gets down with Evan Brown, Shaimus’s guitarist, and feel free to let out your own inner geek.

Shaimus - The Sad Thing Is, We Like It Here

  1. What is your first musical memory?
    My very first musical memory was listening to Raffi tapes over and over as a pre-schooler. I used to play the album all the way through, turn it back over to side A, and start right over again. I’m pretty sure I drove my family crazy.
  2. What was the first concert you ever went to?

    My first concert was Billy Joel on the River of Dreams tour when I was about 10 years old. My parents took me, and I was amazed by his showmanship and was privileged to see a set full of classic songs. That was a great introduction to live music.

  3. What or whom do you go to for musical inspiration?

    In my immediate vicinity, I go to my bandmates. They always have really original, creative ideas and always impress me with how seriously they take the craft of songwriting. And when all else fails, I just hit ‘play’ on albums from my mainstay artists: Clapton, Radiohead, Ben Folds, Elliott Smith, Chris Cornell, Pink Floyd, Supergrass… There are so many bands that inspire me in such different ways.

  4. Without using the words “alternative,” “pop,” or “rock,” describe your sound.

    Bouncy Geekcore. We have some bouncy songs and a lot of our music appeals to music and video game geeks (we were in Guitar Hero and Rock Band 2 after all), plus I’d like to think there’s a bit of edge to our sound, which can particularly be heard during our live show.

  5. Stones or Beatles?
    I am personally a big Beatles guy. I was raised on them⎯ I’ve been listening to them since I was a baby. I saw Paul McCartney live in 2005, and it was easily in the top 3 best concerts I’ve ever seen… Incredible stage spectacle, plus a setlist of over 30 classic songs that I swear was tailored to my personal tastes. There were tunes in that set that I didn’t even dream of hoping for (like “I Got A Feeling” from Let It Be) and when he played them it felt like it was just me and him in the arena together.
  6. What’s your dream collaboration? 

    I would love to write an album with Andy Sturmer from Jellyfish. I think he might be the unsung songwriting genius of the ’90s. Super catchy songwriting with a flair for in-your-face musicianship without being indulgent. I think brilliant music always dances a fine line like that.

  7. Do you find the song or does the song find you?

    For me, the song finds me the vast majority of the time. If I sit down with the goal of creating, it’s hit or miss. The much more common scenario is that I’m hit with a stroke of genius while I’m in an elevator, far from anywhere that I can write it down (but not likely inspired by the elevator music).

  8. How do you discover new music

    Lately I’ve been a little obsessed with Grooveshark. I try to keep up with as many new bands as I can, but there are so many of them and they all have sites scattered across the web. With Grooveshark I can sample the music of many bands in one place, and it’s helped open new musical worlds to me. My musical horizons have definitely expanded exponentially because of the ‘net.