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May 10, 2010

Things Indies can learn from Idol ...

Found this article via Bob Baker. It's pitched at writers but it's also very true for Independent musos.

No matter what people think of American Idol, or any other variant of the Idol franchise, the performers on it are coached to excel at their craft. I haven't watched the show for a while but I recall being struck by the way you can can see the people grow from nervous auditioners to full-on pop stars. Their style of music may not be everyone's cup of tea (I don't have a single Idol alumnus in the collection or on my iPod other then in compilations) but the they're coached like because it WORKS. Especially on TV.

I was particularly struck by these entries:

2. Know yourself and be yourself – that’s why people watch – let your uniqueness shine through

3. Figure out who your fans really are and dedicate yourself to them, they are going to be the ones who go the distance for you, tell others about you, and cheer you forward

4. Take in and learn from the critiques, they come with the territory

5. Push yourself to keep growing, nothing else inspires others more

All of those apply to any successful human endeavour but especially tin Independent creators of music. You must know who you are and what you have to give your fans. You must also be open to critiques of your efforts, or you WILL fail to connect. You must also be willing to push yourself in response to the feedback you get, or you'll just become a cookie-cutter - churning out the same old music every time ...

Too many Indies who are technically gifted and well-intentioned fail because they don't know what they're saying, or who they're talking to, or how to respond to criticism. Put that together and there's no possibility of growth.

To further complicate things, too many Indies insist that it's all about them and forget to address their audience. They look at their instruments or their feet or each other rather than connecting the the people they expect to support them ...

That's never gonna work - on Idol or for any Indies.

Posted by Hughie at May 10, 2010 1:57 PM

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