Rachmaninoff had Big Hands

Aleksey Igudesman and Richard Hyung-ki Joo are two classical musicians who have taken the world by storm with their unique and hilarious theatrical shows, which combine comedy with classical music and popular culture. Their clips on YouTube, to date, have gathered over 15 million hits, and they have appeared live on television in several...

How Music Schools Prioritize Career Development

In my last post, I argued that prospective music students should favor schools that actively prioritize career development and entrepreneurship.  After all, this shows a commitment to producing working musicians, as opposed to simply outstanding ones (who are likely unprepared to deal with professional realities of the 21st Century).  Even if...

Roller Blading Never Sounded So Good

 Mozart 41…on wheels…           While there are hundreds of thousands of great performances captured on tape, the music videos featured on TSM blog feature musical creations that are unusual, innovative, humorous, or otherwise purple. This collection is fun–perhaps a stress reliever or diversion at a late night bash! It also...

Beatboxing Flutist

Greg Pattillo took the flute world by storm after posting some videos on YouTube combining his flute playing with beatboxing.  By now, the video below, where he performs Inspector Gadget, has been viewed over 18 million times!  Greg Patillo is a featured artist in The Savvy Musician.     While there are hundreds of thousands of great...

Why Purple is the Most Marketable Color

Many musicians spend a great deal of time focused on artistic excellence, and almost none on what makes them remarkable.  If you hope to attract significant attention, I suggest you prioritize both. In an over-crowded market, where hundreds of competitors often vie for jobs, concert engagements, students, or audience members, only those...

An Essential Question When Applying to Music School

Not all music schools are the same.  Where you study will have a huge impact on the kind of artist you become, skill sets you develop, and network you cultivate.  In order to make a wise decision, many important questions should be posed during the application process.  Who will be my primary teacher? How rigorous is the curriculum?  Which...

Music for Vegetables

Linsey Pollak  is well known all around Australia as a musician, instrument maker,  composer, musical director and community music facilitator. In the first video, he begins with Bugs Bunny’s favorite food, and ends up with a woodwind instrument.  Or should I say vegie-wind?         Here we see him grooving with a potato. As...

You Fail!!! But Are You Doing it Right?

Most musicians I know are terrified of failure. They beat themselves up for each mistake, and suffer bouts of depression with each rejection. Failure is viewed as the enemy, and one to be avoided at all costs. So they play it safe.  Really safe. But everyone fails. This is a simple fact of life, and there’s no way to avoid it. The important...

Warning: Mixing Percussion and Real Estate Can Be Dangerous

Rhythm is everywhere.  Even in the bathroom.  If you don’t believe it, just check out this piece. Composed by Ola Simonsson, it has a pretty self-explanatory title: Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers.        While there are hundreds of thousands of great performances captured on tape, the music videos featured on TSM blog...

Do You “Play” Music?

In my experience, few things in life are more enjoyable than the act of making music. Music is fun!  How wonderful it is that we use the verb “play” to describe this endeavor! Yet for too many musicians, the activity pursued when singing or touching their instrument couldn’t be further from play. Instead they tense up, get nervous, or even...

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