From Telling Jokes to Playing Notes
Well, I was working on a new blog post for two weeks and apparently it didn’t save! Now I have to write a watered down version of it. Anyway, wasup?! Welcome to my latest Alan Squat’s blog post. This is about the only time I feel like I can say I am a dork.
Forgive me, I hate to sound cliche because but the universe works in incredible ways and I am finally experiencing this first hand. I have been trying to break into the music business for over a decade with original music projects but have failed over and over again. I started getting into acting and stand-up comedy over the last seven years of my life because I always wanted to explore those forms of expression but creating and playing live music with like-minded individuals has always been my biggest passion.
The last original rock band of mine, my baby, The Scarlet Scourge, was just starting to crawl and I dedicated a lot of my time in seeing it grow; i.e., writing iridescent lyrics, creating melodies catchy enough to sing along or hum to, scheduling band practice, recording band practices to listen back on to see if there was anything of value to keep or perhaps discuss at future rehearsals, calling up venues to book shows, finding the right artist to help create an image that represents our brand, spend thousands of dollars on recording and marketing, getting cd’s manufactured and published, uploading music with bios and press kits to various social media websites, rehearsing, rehearsing, rehearsing, paying for vocal lessons to learn better singing mechanics, attend A&R events to find people interested in representing our music, thinking about threatening A&R peeps with a plastic gun like the ones used in Airheads to get some representation but eventually not going through with that, calling indie radio stations for on-air play, and I think that’s close to pretty much it. Gees. The money that I made off of that equals negative lots of money.
Then what happened next? The band freaking breaks up. WHAT????????????!!! Insert non-stop double bass flams and death metal screams here you turkey: _______!
Mad vs. Apoplectic: I felt worthless! “Defeat is only bitter if you swallow it,” and I was choking on it, down to the pit of my stomach. All of my time was wasted? My precious time?! We have such little time on this earth and I couldn’t help but feel as though I wasted a ton of my time doing something that had failed. And the truth is, it wasn’t because our band wasn’t good enough, it was because all of our goals were different. I was deeply depressed, furious, and confused. I decided to put on my own solo rock and roll tour across the country while doing some stand-up along the way to get some closure on the matter because, well, “Breaking up is hard to do.” – Neil Sadaka
FROM SINGING NOTES TO TELLING JOKES
It was time to embrace a new chapter in my life. I started to focus on acting and stand-up comedy in Hollywood. Luckily, I started getting into acting, improv, and stand-up comedy a few years before The Scarlet Scourge’s demise so I wasn’t a noob to those forms of expressions when reaching LA LA Land (Where 3,000 people go to everyday in pursuit of the dream). By the way, just about as many leave everyday too. INSANE. No doubt, I’ve landed some great gigs, learned a lot more about acting and comedy in LA, and have also met a lot of SOME great people too, but whenever there was an opportunity to audition for a music, I had to cheat on acting and stand-up a little bit. Something that I “failed” at was still my guilty pleasure.
Side Note: The best thing about auditioning over and over again is that you stop caring if you get denied or not. You never know the reason as to why you don’t get a gig and it hurts to keep guessing about it. I’ve done that way too many times before, “Why didn’t I say Guacamole like, ‘Guacamolay.’ Damn it! That’s why I didn’t get booked!” You gotta just keep working on your craft in the meantime to sharpen your tools and your confidence comes along with it. The practice never stops; if you land a paid gig, sweet, if you don’t, here’s the secret:keep practicing and creating new content or perhaps quit. Is this what you really want to do?
At the end of the day, I want to be an inspiration to people like the people who inspire me; i.e., my brother, sister, mother, father, supportive friends, and people who have done things I’d like to do, before me.
“Sometimes things happen when you least expect them.” – Lesley Kagan
A few months ago outside my apartment complex in Panorama City, I met a touring piano player and he told me about a website where you can audition for paid music gigs so I signed up on the website as a bass player and a singer. Quickly, I saw an ad up on the site for a great touring rock, pop, band called The Pullman Standard. To me, they sound like U2 + Depeche Mode + Stabbing Westward + a mixture of old school punk rock acts. I freaking liked their music a lot and noticed myself head banging to it. I sent them my music along with my bio and they invited me to audition on bass. I’d love to tell you more about it, but I’m about to get picked up right now to go on tour across the country to play rock music and get paid doing it! I did not expect this to happen in my life the way it did. All that time I have put into music in the past is paying off right now and it’s when I at least expected it to so if I can slay my dragon, so can you!
I just wanted to inspire and say thank you to all of those people who have supported me along my crazy journey. I couldn’t have done it without your support and love in my life. Thank you for helping me slay my dragon. We will be on tour til December 20th and it might extend overseas. I will keep you all posted. If you have a printer and are in the area, print out the September Tour Dates Promo below, and stick it on your refrigerator? Dope. Lol. I love you all. XOXOXO.