I recently had the pleasure of meeting Kenny Aronoff and attending his Tama drum workshop. Kenny is one of my favourite drummers. Kenny had lots of great stories about his career, from seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan all the way through to where he’s at today. He offered up a 7-step plan for success in music, and in life. He had stories and anecdotes from his personal experience to illustrate each one. I won’t recount each one here, but I’ll share a quick rundown of what he had to say.

1. Discipline
He talked a lot about practising 8 hours a day. It’s a recurring theme for him.

2. Hard Work. Show up, be prepared, know your stuff.

3. Create a plan that you execute. Don’t take no for an answer, find a way around obstacles, keep pushing forward. Lots of stories to illustrate what he means.

4. Team Communication Skills. Get everyone working together, be a problem solver.

5. RPS. Repetition is Preparation for Success. (see #1 and #2)

6. Healthy Life is a Wealthy Life. Kenny’s recipe for health, in this order, is
- weight training
- cardio
- stretching
- diet (mostly what you DON’T eat, like sugar and white flour)
- supplements (take your vitamins)
- water (drink lots)
- sleep
- meditation

7. Stay focused and relevant. The music biz changes, you better too. Don’t waste time.

And he asked what is the #1 purpose of a drummer? Kenny’s answer: get the song on the radio, make it #1.

If you get a chance to catch a Kenny Aronoff workshop, don’t miss it, even if you’re not a drummer. Oh, and bring ear plugs because they don’t call him the hardest hitting man in show business for nothing!

Last week I was on the big island of Hawai’i for the first Hawai’i Songwriting Festival. I attended sessions with some incredible songwriters: Sue Ennis, Gary Burr, Georgia Middleman, Jason Blume , Brett James, Big Al Anderson, Glen Phillips , Hookman Marlin Bonds, and Adam Zelkind. Talk about inspiration…and information. Also had a great chat over lunch with Michael Laskow, the founder of Taxi. I enjoyed speed mentoring sessions with music supervisor Beth Amy Rosenblatt, and Marmoset’s Ryan Wines (see Ryan’s TED talk here).

Thanks for the Brotman family who were everywhere at once keeping things moving along. The location for the conference was stunning, at the Hapuna Prince. Wow!

Band gigs have not been as frequent lately, mostly because we refuse to work for just about nothing I guess, and that’s where the economy seems to be driving prices for bands around these parts. Gail and I have been doing more gigs as a duo, so we fired up a new website. It’s super simple, but I like it. Dive in at GailandKarl.com

Gail and Karl, and Jay

Sunday evening at Calgary airport

I’m back from Breakout West, and there’s so much follow up work to do, it’s great! It was so good to meet Music Supervisors Connie Farr, Michael Perlmutter, Natasha Duprey, Richard Glasser, Andrea von Foerster, Samuel Diaz and AminĂ© Ramer. Thank you all for your time and participation.

The keynote interview with Michael Chugge was great, but I didn’t get a chance to check out the rest of the National Music Centre - next time, Calgary.

Wine-ohs, where I saw Chris Gheran and then Donald Ray Johnson perform.

I’ll be there! Looking forward to meeting lots of people at Breakout West in Calgary, especially music supervisors. I’ll be armed with business cards, meta data-rich CD’s with clear contact info on the labels and a focus on finding out how I can be of service to make it easy for you to find and license some great music!

Tribehouse,org is presenting yours truly, along with Mrs. Electric Bard, plus Norm Strauss and Jane Eamon at the Streaming Cafe tonight to sing some original songs. I am really looking forward to it. We get under way at 7PM.

Thornybleeder recording artist Billy the Kid has a new album out now, and you can hear it for free.

Well, this is cool. The Malarkeys are featured on pubsong.com not once, but twice this summer. June 28, 2011 show and July 25, 2011.

2008 Kia Sedona LX out for a test drive
Got a minivan upgrade for hauling PA and guitars, etc.. This is a 2008 Kia Sedona to replace our 1998 Windstar. Haven’t tried stuffing all our gear into yet, but it should be good, right?
stop in Hope for coffee May 15, 2011