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Stellar Awards

MATT MAYER IN NASHVILLE

Dallas, TX-Songwriter, Producer, Rapper, Recording Artist, Matt Mayer has been hard at work on his upcoming debut album, American Survivor; he took time out to come get some work on the business side of things in Nashville.  “I came up to work with my business partner, Jason Hollis of Life-Line Worldwide; we are getting my publishing, PRO (Performing Rights Organization) at BMI, copyrighting my songs, networking with producers & industry guys, and getting everything set-up for the record” says Matt Mayer.  While in Nashville Matt really wanted to get to see the inner workings of the songwriting and business-side of how things get done.  “I really want to do things right as Hollis is always telling me; take the time to do it right don’t let the industry dictate how you do things.  At the end of the day I want to make relevant hip hop music that speaks to me and hopefully to millions of people the world-over.  I’m the kind of artist who is very meticulous about the lyrics and how that message comes across.  This trip has taught me a lot and I’m just excited to see where the music will take me” said Matt Mayer.  American Survivor the album will be arriving late 2017 stay tuned for details.

SONGWRITING 101: CREATING AN ARRANGEMENT

Nashville, TN-Musician, Songwriter, Producer, Jason Hollis owner of Life-Line Worldwide wanted to share his take on “Creating An Arrangement” this can be written in many ways some musicians/producers do it all after the song is written and piece each part together or some do it as the song is being written.  “I wanted to let you all know that when I’m writing I’m usually thinking of the entire wide-screen picture of how I want the song to look, sound, and feel to the listener.  In the past I would write the chorus and then build the song around that but recently, I’ve been creating the intro to the song and writing from the first verse on; I hear in my head the guitars, keys, drums, strings, etc. all the way how to begin with a hook on the instrumental before a note is sung.  I work in increments from the intro, the verse, pre-chorus, chorus, if there’s a bridge, instrumental after the bridge or back to the chorus to the ending either fading out or a true ending arrangement.  At the same time, I’m thinking about the vocal arrangements on harmonies or stacking vocals on the melody of the song. I want the Country, Rock, R&B, Gospel, Jazz, or Southern Gospel that I’m recording to have that live sound like you’re in the room with me. I’ve listened to thousands of recordings and there was just a certain sound of how everything was recorded back then from The Beatles, The Rolling Sones, Led Zeppelin, Motown, The Staple Singers, Johnny Cash, The Eagles, and the list goes on and on. Now, on the Hip Hop, Electronic/Dance, or Pop I may be stacking tracks full of drum tracks, synths, samples, or vocals because that’s usually what I hear in my head; on occasion I utilize real instruments like bass, guitars, horns, or other instruments that I feel the song calls for.  As a songwriter, I literally have hundreds of unfinished songs, snippets of ideas, guitar riffs, and piano ideas galore maybe one day I’ll finish them all? I hope so but for now if something hits me I’m finishing the entire song and then moving on to the next one.  I am truly addicted to music it soothes my soul, it touches every emotion in me, it inspires me, and I hope it touches people in every walk of their lives and every situation that they are going through.  Ultimately, for me I pray that God speaks through the songs that I create to people everywhere and lives are effected” exclaims Jason Hollis.

COPYRIGHT 101: NEVER STOP LEARNING!

Nashville, TN-Musician, Songwriter, Producer, Jason Hollis wanted to talk about something that he’s learning more about almost on a daily basis, Copyrighting your songs.  “I grew up in the 80’s and in the 90’s when I recorded music and toured for a living full-time and I had no idea what publishing, copyrighting, muchless how to read a contract.  Well, I’ve learned a lot since then and I wanted to share my findings” says Jason Hollis.  First, when copyrighting your songs go to the Library Of Congress website: www.loc.gov from there click on US Copyright Office which will take you to www.copyright.gov.  Next, click on Register a copyright and then click on Performing Arts Music, Lyrics, Sound Recordings, Scripts, and Stage Plays.  Once on this page it gives you a list of catagories that generally are used under Performing Arts.  Recently, Jason and his songwriting partner went to go  copyright ten new songs; after calling and researching on the website; they found that the  first step to take is to copyright the songs themselves by choosing the option of Works of Performing Arts or PA as most industry folks like to call it.  Secondly, if you are recording a project or album to put out as a physical or digital format you’ll need to go back in to protect the copyright of the “Sound Recording.” “This was news to me! I had never fully understood this portion of the copyright laws.  As soon as I learned about this portion of the business as a songwriter I knew that I had to share my newfound knowledge with others.  I just really want to share my findings along the way so that others behind me can learn. I’m sure that there’s a lot more that I’ll learn going forward and I want to caution you all; I’ve been in the music industry most of my life and I’m still learning new things all the time!  So never stop learning and I hope this sheds some light on Copyrighting songs.  God bless you all.” said Jason Holls.

SONGWRITING 101: SETTING UP YOUR BRAND

Presentation1 (2)The music business is a crazy ride that I’ve had the pleasure or heartache in some cases that I’ve been a part of most of my life since I was a teenager.  It’s a game filled with ups and downs but for the most part I’ve enjoyed it; a lot of it I had to learn the hard way through trial and error because no one showed me certain aspects of it.  After hundreds of albums I’ve had the opportunity to work on in A&R, Distribution, Marketing, Radio Promotions, Music Videos, as a Musician/Vocalist, etc. I’ve learned that most artists don’t take the time to learn the business side of the music business as much as they work on their craft creating music.  I just wanted to share with you how an artist can set-up their brand in this day and age of the Music and Entertainment business in a brief article.