The New 1776

By on 7-04-2008 in Music Business Insight

by Gary Powell

This site is a very personal self-help manual for me. When beginning my career in music, the kind of mentoring insights, like the ones found here, were either absent, misleading, or simply wrong. Within this site we have visited Benjamin Franklin, Galileo, Aristotle, Rosa Parks and even Joseph Stalin. All of these people have a connection to the American holiday of July 4th; all positive ones, excepting the latter. american music flag gary powellJoseph Stalin represents the worst of what human beings are capable of when our institutions, governments and lizard-brain fears become enmeshed.

Parallel to our American heritage, my experience with institutions is that they simply have no idea what to do when a person who colors outside of the lines shows up. Missing the contribution of individuals, or not identifying talent which does not fit nicely into an existing 18th century societal curriculum, is still common to this day. Within this blind spot is where the institutions must adopt and change or risk becoming irrelevant. England rejected the idea of their own irrelevance and neither prepared for it or won the war. Fast-forward 232 years and we can project that the shear muscle of tradition, branding-power and sweat-shops won’t be enough to sustain similar institutions after The New 1776 goes world-wide. What’s this got to do with music or a successful career in the arts?

With some 45 million of my productions having been sold in 47 countries it’s hard to argue that I have not been successful. This, however, is not a simple success story. It is one that is best understood within the context of how and what I have contributed to and negotiated with – both small and large organizations and even individuals. There are not just insignificant nuances to understand about a career in music of this length. There are also accidents of fate, manipulations, weather, betrayals, luck, and bold personal moves. The New 1776 is about understanding everything in our careers until that time when old strategies transform into bold moves. The Declaration of Independence was THE bold move of our country. This came after decades of negotiations and measured strategies which did not work. We each have to know when OUR time for a bold move has come.

Most of my words here are written as fuel for personally stretching to reach my own goals. My goal is to achieve a greater integration of my talent, education, skills, self, and experience within a musical expression. Here, within this music-business blog, I have slowly been granting myself authorization to move forward in bold new ways.

In this regard, this blog is a very personal self-help manual.

It’s 1776 all over again for people like me, maybe you are another, who with conscious intention to serve the whole of the good, can now directly contribute and profit from your own individual authority. This is how we can best design and realize our well-earned and prosperous futures. I’m ready for the right people to win. The world is ready for the right people to win. How do we do it?

I’ve been supporting my artist friends since entering music school in 1970. However, I have ignored my own artistic vision to a fault. Now I find my vision pregnant with rich content – born from my own bitter wars of disappointment and the abject folly of success. Within this context, which only experience brings, I have lost all fear.

Here are some guidelines I’ve set for myself.

  • Do not follow or artistically try to find my audience. That’s what record companies are good at, not artists.
  • Invite my audience into my own musical experience, even if I know it expects more from them. I have found most individual adults hungry for music which reflects the complexity and beauty of their own lives.
  • Through continued study and experimentation, both musically and otherwise, let my music show a personal reflection from these quests for understanding.
  • Boldly put this music out there. It was healing to write it, so now share it with great pride and little expectation.
  • Ask my friends and colleagues for help and support in any way with which they feel comfortable in participating.

    From this 2008 Independence Day forward, on my site you will begin to find more links to iTunes and other download sites as well. I am now asking in a direct way for your help by forwarding my announcements to your friends and networks. You can also connect with me on Plaxo, Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin where I will be keeping my “Pulse” in regard to future releases. I will look forward to creating these new works and sharing them with all of you. We have so many ways to help each other now – through our social networks, writing and subscribing to blogs, and simple email, we can refer our support for each others’ efforts therefore inspiring more people to reach higher for others and deeper within themselves. This is how we build a world that we wish we were living in just as Thomas Jefferson did for us in 1776!

    This is The New 1776 for the entire globe. It’s time to go inward and come out with a healing hand which only inspiration and aspiration can lend, remembering that within this freedom, we all contribute and support each other by our own choice. Happy 4th of July to the whole world. I’m choosing to win.

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    One Comment

    1. So what are your benchmarks? How do you know (and do your care) if you music resonates with an audience. My guess is that you might know, but don’t much care? It is not the reason you hone your craft. The difficulty seems to lie in reconciling commercial success with artistic fulfillment. History is littered with artist who never achieved the former and only posthumously the latter.

      The first question that seems to never be asked is ‘why’. Why does one choose this avenue? What is the desired result? Fame, fortune, notoriety? Obscurity and poverty never seem to make the list of desired outcomes. The art seems to be the ability to articulate, in a musical monologue, those expressions and passions that are unexceptional and universal?

      Then the question arises, is this expression a commentary on exiting conditions, or does it have the power to shape the future?

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