DELHI 2 DUBLIN "LOVE IS THE HERO"
Here's a band called Delhi 2 Dublin, a rootsy dance outfit from Canada that merges Indian music with Celtic music, a very odd mixture that really works. They're pretty well-known in Canada but this is their first foray into the US, and here's the first video, an acoustic take on the first single off of the album titled "Love Is The Hero."
Band member Tarun Nyar (tabla, electronics) says the following about the video: "This is a song about our favourite superhero: LOVE. He's not as badass as Batman or as sexy as Spider-Man, but he may just be the most powerful of them all. We wrote this song with our good friend Chin Injeti, and it went through a bunch of different incarnations before we could really call it our own. It's about how, sometimes, when stuff gets rough, our man LOVE comes in to save the day. We've never written a 'love song' before, so it took us a while to get used to it. LOL! The album version of the song is fairly electronic, but we decided a few weeks ago in Toronto that we wanted to put down an 'acoustic' version of the track. We had a little window of time in our tour schedule so we went into Revolution Sound and recorded old-fashioned style. One take, no edits, no tuning...what you see is what you get, which was perfect for Mitch Fillion to shoot, because that's his style as well. The song, 'Love is the Hero' is off our new album Turn Up The Stereo.
8 PRACTICAL TIPS ON TOURING FROM TUNECORE
Tour much? Andy Proctor has some suggestions...
"Artists, even the most successful ones, often make the majority of their money on the road. Not only is touring necessary to build and maintain a fan base, but if done well, it can also be very lucrative. Below, you'll find some firsthand knowledge from my tour managing days and personal experiences..."
Booking the Tour
If you're fortunate enough to have a team behind you, your manager and agent work this out. If you're on your own, pick some acts similar to your genre and popularity, and check the routing of their tours. You can use that as a jumping off point to contact venues and route your tour. Pollstar.com can also give you venue ideas. It depends on the venue, but it's often a good idea to contact them 4-6 months ahead of a desired date.
Advancing the Tour
Once you've contracted with the venues, spend the week before hitting the road emailing or calling them again to finalize details. When do we load-in and do a sound check? Who is the contact running sound and handling production? Who pays us (settles) at the end of the night? Are you feeding us or giving us money (called a buyout) to eat? You should definitely also call the day before the show, or the day of, to make sure nothing has changed as well. For instance, the sound guy you had been talking to may have moved on, and the new guy doesn't have your stage plots or input requirements.
On the Road
Bring about 2 weeks worth of clothes. Hopefully that works out to 1 large suitcase. Do laundry any chance you get because there may not be another chance for a while. You're probably broke and need to make food last so you can bring a small cooler if you want, but it's a luxury, space permitting. Here's a good tip: ask for baby spinach and fruit on your hospitality rider and take it with you. Baby spinach is a green that will last and you can put it on sandwiches for the next few days with minimal refrigeration. Also, choose a bag of pitas over a loaf of bread. The bread takes up more space and will just get squashed. Do whatever you can to stay healthy and supplement your gas station diet.
Being on the road is a fluid situation so be ready to improvise, but planning and preparation are your friends. Good communication, as always, is essential. Create and share Google Docs with band and management regarding your itinerary and accounting. I honestly don't know how people did it before all of this technology. Being on tour without GPS and a cell phone?!
Your Trusty Steed
Try to cram it all in a 15-passenger van if possible. Having a trailer can be difficult to park/back up. Not to mention the savings on gas. Be aware that if you take a toll on your battery by charging multiple devices off of it at a time, you may end up needing to replace it. Make time for oil changes every 3-4k miles. If you're in a van, back into parking spaces so that your back doors are against a wall or post and so nobody can break in.
If there's no shame in your game, send out a tweet to your fans to see if anyone wants to house you for the night. This always leads to memorable stories. Otherwise, "name your own price" on Priceline a day or two ahead of your arrival. You can usually find good rooms for $50-$75 a night. Another tip, you can often find the best deals (which are generally safe bets) at hotels near airports; 2 ½ star hotels are perfect. For some reason, many fancier hotels don't offer free wifi or a continental breakfast and you will definitely want both.
Merchandise can be an undertaking, as you're running a mobile pop up shop every night, but it's very profitable. Keep it simple. Two shirts in three sizes each, a couple CDs, maybe a vinyl piece for cool points. Someone will have to "count in" all the product at the beginning of the night, "count out" the money at the end, and make sure the money matches the difference. Buy a small cash box. Consider using Square to accept credit cards. Have an email sign up list.
Be aware of time zones. You will gain time as you move west and lose it as you move east. Save receipts for tolls and gas so you can expense them on your taxes. If you're crossing into another country such as Canada, it's not advisable to carry merchandise because you're then importing goods to be sold and will need to declare them and pay tax. You can say they're for promotional purposes and see how that goes, but be prepared for difficulty. There are strategies to get around it, like manufacturing in Canada and shipping to the venue, but it can be a hassle. Expect a 30-60 minute delay at any border crossing. Crossing at a small check point often means they have more time to scrutinize the artsy lookin' weirdos, so keep that in mind.
Have Some Fun!
By all means, make time for some fun stuff. You never know when you'll be out that way again. Go whitewater rafting in Colorado, take Route 66 for a bit instead of the interstate, hit up the world's largest ball of yarn, anything to break up what can be the monotony of the road. It will build bonding experiences between you and your bandmates that will ultimately show up on stage.
For more information on TuneCore: http://www.tunecore.com
PEOPLECLAIM...YOU KNOW, FOR WHEN LAWYERS JUST GET IN THE WAY
While I'm throwing some "tips" focused pieces out there, check this mini-interview with folks who might be the answer to expensive litigation...
Photo credit: Hap Mullenneaux
A Conversation With Ti Liptak
Mike Ragogna: What the heck is PeopleClaim?
Ti Liptak: PeopleClaim.com provides a remarkably simple, effective, and inexpensive way to settle disputes that everybody has, with anyone, anywhere, all online.
MR: Who would use your service?
TL: Everyone has disputes. What's been missing is a better way to get them resolved.
MR: Traditionally, people go to lawyers although LegalZoom has rewritten the paradigm a bit. How does your company function or fit into the legal world?
TL: PeopleClaim removes the need for expensive lawyers or mediators and provides an unbiased way to get your complaints heard by the decision makers who can resolve your issue.
MR: How easy is it to use and how competitive is your pricing?
TL: It's very inexpensive and all done through a simple online system. It's free to file and premium options that help get claims resolved faster range from $3.00 to about $20.00. Unlike other dispute resolution sites, PeopleClaim accepts NO money from opposing parties so our users can rest assured that we have their best interest in mind. Companies using our site find that they can efficiently resolve their customer's complaints and maintain a good online reputation. Users can get informed by viewing unresolved complaints to make purchasing and service decisions.
MR: How did PeopleClaim get to where it is now?
TL: PeopleClaim is a disruptive technology in an industry where we saw a change was needed, the 140 billion dollar a year legal system. Through our beta testing we have refined a solution that has been proven to work with thousands of real complaints.
MR: It's automated, right?
TL: Yeah, we have developed an online system that is completely automated and works as advertised. Being automated it means claims can be resolved in as little as a few minutes.
MR: How are you different from other legal services?
TL: PeopleClaim is a completely online process. With us, there is no need to attend a court session, meet with a mediator, or send in forms. All you need is a computer with internet access.
MR: How quick is the turnaround?
TL: It's fast. Instead of waiting months for a resolution, you can get it in days, even hours.
MR: Is it possible that a conflict of interest can arise from dealing with financial matters?
TL: PeopleClaim accepts NO money from opposing parties. Many other sites are funded by the companies, professionals, or individuals claimants are filing against. PeopleClaim only accepts a small fee for public posting from the claimant to remain unbiased.
MR: You also have the issue of public posting involved, right?
TL: PeopleClaim allows opposing parties to respond to a complaint and if it's settled, the claim is removed from online posting. This provides incentive for opposing parties to work with the claimant to resolve the claim. Other sites post complaints but the opposing party can't resolve the complaint and have it removed. The only claims that post publicly are claims that have been paid for. We have the claimants contact information, which provides accountability and maintains the quality of our database. Unlike sites where many of the reviews are purchased and/or submitted by friends of the company, PeopleClaim provides a real view of the companies complaint history.
MR: How can people research your company further?
TL: To learn more about the company, people should visit our website at http://www.peopleclaim.com and also watch our video.