Less is More: Keeping it Simple On Stage and Off

Ben Hardt & His Symphony

Ben Hardt & His Symphony


My old college professor, Lloyd Corder (check out his marketing site), says “the best writing in the world is on the back of a DVD cover.”  Why? Because the writer basically has 1 paragraph to convince you that the DVD is worth renting or buying.  This is so true! 

If you can’t be accurately and effectively summed up in a few sentences, then maybe its not worth saying.  This same principle can be applied to alot of things.

Less is More on Stage
If you have a 30 minute set and you have to decide between 6 or 7 songs, go with 6.  It’s better to leave your audience wanting more than having them grow tired of your set.  Read your audience and determine whether they are bored. Even if they’re not, think about ending while your audience is still 100% in tune with your music.

Don’t Send a Book

What do your pitches look like? When you’re trying to impress a venue booker, are you telling them every notable accomplishment you’ve ever had or are you sending a short email with need-to-know facts about yourself and your music?  Are you telling them everything on your website or are you sending them a simple link to your website?  Make sure to check out the ”How to Score Reviews of Your CD” post for more tips on keeping your emails simple.  Believe me, email recipients will appreciate and be more likely to respond to your email if it’s to-the- point.

Quality Is Better Than Quantity

I have a friend of a friend who spent $20,000 on a 10-panel insert for his CD (paying someone to do the artwork, and spending the$ to print the booklet).   I still haven’t wrapped my brain around this.  Try every single method possible to keep things as cost effective as possible.  If you can do a 6-panel or 4-panel insert, you wanna go that route.  (Hint: make the lyrics smaller…duh!)

The same idea goes for your band. If you have  3 people in your band, you have fewer people to make sound good.  You don’t sound bad b/c you need another guitarist or keyboardist. Work with what you have and make it tight.

The same also goes for playing out.  If you are only booking 1 show a month (as opposed to 10), you need to make sure that one show is a great show.  For everyone who’s been waiting a month to see you,  they need to know that your one show is worth the wait and they need to get their money’s worth.  Pittsburgh artist Ben Hardt does this quite well. Even with the fact that he is based in Pittsburgh, he probably only does one show every 4-6 weeks. And he always bring it with a full band and a full string quartet.  Its that one quality show that everyone goes to b/c they know its gonna be good.


Hope these suggestions helped.  Feel free to offer your own.

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Explore posts in the same categories: E-mail Pointers, Finding/Getting Bookings, Performing, Your CD

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One Comment on “Less is More: Keeping it Simple On Stage and Off”

  1. John Says:

    This is a great site. I won’t be subscribing by email, but will track back frequently. Keep it up!

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