Micah's Musings

Oasis President and Founder Micah Solomon
on music, business, and the music business

One simple way to find success in music today

October 17, 2016 — Once upon a time, marketing and advertising were powerful forces. You could hire Don Draper and Peggy Olson's real-life counterparts and your work was pretty much all done. They would figure out the angle (Lucky Strikes are good for your throat!) round up the testimonials (including-true, and horrifying, example–20,000 doctors saying tobacco was in fact good for your throat), and you could sit back and count your money. Whether your product was good, bad, mediocre, or–like Lucky Strikes–would literally kill your customer, your product would sell. Read the full article.

A New Way to look at Practicing and Paying Your Dues

August 24, 2016 — Forgive me for getting all classics-y on you; I promise I'm doing this with a musical purpose in mind. In Walden, Thoreau declares that the work of chopping wood “warms him twice,” because he first gets to enjoy the labor (the wood chopping), then later gets to enjoy the result of the labor (the warm fire in the cold New England winter). Well, musical reader, just replace “wood chopping” with “woodshedding” [practicing an instrument], and you now have the secret of better practicing, composing, arranging, and “paying your dues.” Read the full article.

A chat with “The Voice” fan favorite Owen Danoff

July 27, 2016 — On the most recent season of “The Voice,” singer-songwriter Owen Danoff stood out as an immediate fan favorite (and the special pick of Adam Levine). While this was the first time most listeners in America were introduced to him, Owen’s involvement with music goes back far and runs deep. The son of legendary songwriter Bill Danoff, who is best known as the author (along with John Denver) of the immortal “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” Owen is a new generation of singer-songwriter whose so-far independent career is now making waves, including with his first post-Voice single, “Love On Your Side,” released this summer, and an upcoming EP to be manufactured and packaged by Oasis Disc Manufacturing this autumn. Read the full article.

An interview with a cappella and Jewish shtick star
Sean Altman

June 29, 2016 — Oasis client Sean Altman has had an astonishingly diverse musical career that includes helping to create the modern a cappella revival, long before the emergence of Glee; a worldwide hit with the theme song and starring performances in Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego, and another chapter in Jewish shtick (lighthearted, ethnically themed comical songs aimed at Jewish audiences) as the 6’3” solo act, Jewmongous...
Read the full article.

Today might be the best day in history to move your
music career forward

May 18, 2016 — In many ways, the best time in history to move your musical career forward is right now. The economy’s plugging along. We're living in (relative) peacetime. The internet makes it easier than ever before to find fans for just about any genre of music, and, once found, to share your music with them and keep them updated on your activities.
Read the full article.

Music Sounds Better Together: Building a Successful
Career Through Connection

April 20, 2016 — Researchers at Yale, using chocolate as their study material, recently concluded that chocolate tastes best when two or more people are eating it together... As the study’s authors summarize, “Sharing an experience with another person, [even] without communicating, amplifies one’s experience.”
Read the full article.

How 150,000,000 YouTube Views Changed His Life

March 23, 2016 — This being the month of Oasis’s Taylor Guitars giveaway, I spent some time with Oasis client Dave Carroll, the musician whose airline-abused Taylor guitar became world-famous via Carroll’s song and video, United Breaks Guitars, which is reported to have received over 150 million views on YouTube and elsewhere.
Read the full article.

Your Future Former Bandmates

February 24, 2016 — Years ago, the then-fledgling band REM explained their rule about choosing a producer. To paraphrase their sentiment: “We’ve decided as a band that we won’t work with [jerks.] (Here, REM used a pungent synonym for “jerk.”) Bands don’t stay together for that many years, so why spend months of that time with someone we hate working with?”... What if you’re the person other people hate working with? Read the full article.

Why you should only eat part of a frog for breakfast

January 27, 2016 — Do you want to get more done every day? Specifically, do you want to get the all-crucial part of your “to-do” list done (for example: getting that new album project off the ground) that will make the most difference in your musical progress, your career, your life – but that you’ve been avoiding getting started? Read the full article.

When is the best time to practice?

December 15, 2015 — The best time to practice is when you’re inspired, when you’ve just learned something new, when you’re already filled with musical excitement. Unfortunately, that’s the least likely time that many of us will practice. More often, we’ll learn a new lick or receive some new inspiration and then wait to turn it into action, into habit. This is exactly the wrong approach. Read the full article.

The Power of a CD or LP Album as a Souvenir

November 11, 2015 — You may not think of them this way, but CDs and LPs — and the packaging in which they’re encased — are powerful, and popular, souvenirs. A CD or LP album is more than simply a music-delivery vehicle. It conveys and memorializes the moment of its purchase: where you were and with whom and why — every time you look at it, you touch it, you take it in your hands. Read the full article.

There are only two kinds of music

October 7, 2015 — I’m fond of Duke Ellington’s statement that there are only “two kinds of music: good music, and the other kind.” Let’s spend a minute dissecting this quote, which for me still resonates. I find it nifty how the great bandleader, composer, and pianist both dismisses the genre wars (in jazz, that can often mean sub-genre and sub-sub-genre wars) that can consume musicians, critics, and tastemakers, and does it in such a gentle way: not calling it out as ‘bad music’ but just ‘the other kind’ of music. Read the full article.

Career advice Barry Manilow gave me

October 1, 2015 — Years ago, when I was still in music school (and Massachusetts was still a colony), Barry Manilow came to talk to my Berklee classmates and me in our chilly Boston classroom. Manilow, who for all his lack of street cred has had a blockbuster career, shared business and career advice interspersed with commercial breaks: jingles he had written (“Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there”/“I am stuck on Band-Aid [Brand] ’cuz Band-aid’s stuck on me”) that he now engagingly sang for us at the piano. Read the full article.