If you checked my music web page a year ago, you probably wondered if I ever updated it. I’ve been keeping three separate pages about traditional and Americana music updated for years, but I haven’t been nearly as diligent about promoting my own songs.
In the last several months, friends have chided me into fixing that. So I went through a round of updates, using WordPress and one of their “free” templates to get this site out of the 1990s and into the early 2000s, at least.
Then a young musician friend who needs a music web page sent me the link to the Kate Hasting band’s page and asked what it would take to do a page like that? Turned out, it also used a WordPress platform, but the template they used (www.cryoutcreations.eu’s Nirvana) had many features built in that the other template didn’t offer, even if I bought the “upgrade.” So I brought everything over into the new template. Then, because I learned so much when I did that upgrade, I did it again, fixing some things that I didn’t do right the first time.
Now I still have some tweaking to do, and graphics to upgrade, and so on. But if I don’t get back to it every day, I won’t feel like its an embarrassment to have out there. I also sent the CryoutCreation.EU folks 25 Euros as my way of thanking them for creating such a flexible platform. (They suggest $25, but I was feeling generous.)
Why all this trouble? Well, I do like it when the medium doesn’t distract from the message.
Also now I’m way better equipped to help my younger musician friends to set up their web sites than I was before. (I already help with a number of other things.)
Recently I saw an Internet meme that said “Be the person you needed when you were younger.” It’s easy to sit around and kvetch that you never got “the breaks.” But it’s better for everybody – even you – if you pass on what you do know, and try, at least to “be there” for folks who need the same kind of direction and encouragement that you needed (and didn’t get) when you were their age. Many of my CreekDontRise.com and SchoolOfTheRock.com articles were written to pass on things I had to learn the hard way.
I’m still learning things the hard way, today. But if I can make someone else’s life a little easier just by “being there” for him or her, so be it.
In the meantime, please feel free to comment on any of my posts. Or use the contact page to log questions offline. Let me know what you’re thinking, what brick walls you’ve run into, what you stumbled upon that works for you, and so on. Live musicians aren’t competing with each other, you know; we’re competing with televised sports, reality television, video games, binge-watching Buffy on Netflix, and a host of other distractions, most of which keep most adults indoors and away from live music performances. If I can help one person change that, then I’m also doing it for the next person who performs live music, and the next.
Best of luck, and keep paying it forward as you can,