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WHAT FOREIGN ACCORDIONISTS HAD TO SAY ABOUT AMERICAN FEMALE ACCORDIONISTS.

For the first time ever, European accordionists began to show an inquisitive interest in American accordion, and especially in American female accordion players. Naturally, their sudden and vivid interest in learning more about our accordionists was triggered by the articles we wrote about American female accordionists in Accordion Stars magazine; in fact, almost 99% were unknown to them. Thus, waves of inquiries and emails pertaining to a considerable number of female accordionists began to invade us, at Facebook, at home, and at the office.

The majority of inquiries concentrated upon and around female accordionists who either graced the cover of the magazine, or were lavishly written up in the magazine, and the five books -including one encyclopedia- we published on an extensive number of accordion players, such as Linda Ann Warrenn, Debra Peters, Jane ChristisonDonna HainesJoan C. SommersNina Wegmann, Suzana Beites, Eva Ybarraa, Canadian accordionist Debra Kartz, etc. In addition, they wanted to hear our opinions on particular accordionists who received a wide and international exposure via our publications, magazines and posts on Facebook.
Before giving any opinion or a critique, we advised them to watch their videos on youtube, and they did. As they were effervescently interested in what we had or could say about our female accordionists, we were equally interested in what they had to say or could say about our musicians; we thought such exchange of ideas and commentaries would be mutually beneficial.
Whom they liked and whom they didn’t.
Our female accordionists who were liked by their foreign counterparts were Linda Ann Warren, who appeared to them classy, versatile, pretty, international, and friendly. It is not a coincidence that we have always considered Linda Ann Warren as our accordion princess, a classy and versatile maestra with a heart bigger than the world we live in.

They also liked Jane Christison. 
About Jane they said, the way she plays the accordion make them happy; they loved her smile, and recognized her great talent. 
Another accordionist who made a huge impact on them is Nina Wegmann. They consider her to be a very accomplished musician, with absolute mastery of the instrument.

They also liked Canadian accordionist Debra Kartz, in fact, they liked her a lot. 
Astonishingly, Eva Ybarra took them by storm; they were fascinated by her, charmed by her personality, and captivated by her style, which they have never seen or heard anywhere else before. 
Suzana Beites did appeal to them, however she did not bring anything new to the table, and many found her to be technically cold. 
We expected Debra Peters to appeal to them with her cowboy hat and Texan charm, but no, she didn’t. 
They did not like her at all. 
Many found her to be vulgar and boring. Some even said, she plays like a wrestler. We were totally surprised, for we considered Debra a seasoned musician. Yes, she is limited in her presentation and would not fit for venues on Broadway or La Vegas, but still she appeals to a large honky-tonk and beer-drinking crowd in smoky joints where no question asked, you will have the best time of your life

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HOW AND WHERE TO SUCCESSFULLY BOOK YOUR SHOW.

ACCORDIONISTS, MUSICIANS, PERFORMING ARTISTS…READ THIS.
HOW AND WHERE TO SUCCESSFULLY BOOK YOUR SHOW.
VERY IMPORTANT ADVICE FROM FAMSPA (FEDERATION OF AMERICAN MUSICIANS, SINGERS AND PERFORMING ARTISTS)

By Maximillien de Lafayette, FAMSPA PRESIDENT

A music venue is a place or an establishment that specializes in hosting live music events and offering live entertainment. There are many different types, categories, sizes and styles of music venues, ranging from small joints, bars, ethnic restaurants, 5 star restaurants, bistros, indie rock clubs to legendary concert halls. Thus, it is extremely important to know some basic facts about those venues. It is highly recommended to do a little research beforehand when booking your show.
Very important advice and tips to consider when booking your show at venues:
●1-AMBIANCE, REPUTATION, CLIENTELE:
The clientele of an establishment dictates and shapes up its whole ambiance, status, and reputation. Learn who frequents this or that venue. Ask questions and inquire about who goes to that establishment. Students, professionals, diplomats, high class, low class, ethnic groups, blue color class, sport fans, educated people, gigolos? Choose venues that enjoy a good reputation.

●2-EXPOSURE AND VENUES’ SUCCESS:
Successful venues increase your visibility and offer you a wider exposure. Talk to colleagues, associates, peers, and other artists, singers, performers and ask them which venues have been successful for them.

●3-GOOD SOUND SYSTEM:
You got to sound good. That means that the venue must have a good sound system. A poor sound system quality will kill your performance. It is a suicide.

●4-PATRONS’ AND GUESTS’ LISTS:
It is extremely helpful to learn whether the venues have a list of their repeated customers, patrons and guests. Ask the manager if you can use those lists. This could increase the size and volume of attendance, and of course…the revenues.

●5-CONTRACTS AND PAYMENT:
Understand all the terms of the agreement and/or contract you sign with venues. Do not rush to accept their terms. Negotiate. Take your time. Consult with a professional, so you can avoid paying a lawyer’s fee. Put everything in writing.

●6-PERFORMANCE:
Ask the venue’s manager whether the venue has an online reservation. This could boost attendance and revenues. Demand that your performance will be listed and posted on the website of the venue.

●7-SELLING YOUR CD ON THE PREMISES:
Make sure you have the right to sell your CDs at the venues during your performance. Get the consent of the venue’s manager in writing. And insist! This is an opportunity to sell your CD to customers, old and new fans and those who might enjoy your show. Some hustling and greedy managers try to get a piece of the cake. Meaning, they will ask you to pay them a commission, a share of the sale. REFUSE ! This is your CD, your baby. Your very personal property. Your hard work. Your talent. Probably you had to make lots of sacrifices for that CD…and pay a bundle. Don’t give the manager a penny. Eventually, he/she will cave in and agree.

●8-YOUR POSTER:
Very important. Make sure that you have the right to have your poster posted and or exhibited at the entrance of the venue, if such facility exists. Attract the public, and people passing by the venue. This is free publicity and a wide exposure opportunity.

MUSICIANS AND ARTISTS' SERIOUS CONCERNS

LOCAL CABARET AND JAZZ SINGERS AND INDEPENDENT ARTISTS ARE SCREAMING MURDER!

PERFORMING ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS’ SERIOUS CONCERNS. Report by FAMSPA 

Special to Stars Illustrated Magazine.


LOCAL CABARET AND JAZZ SINGERS AND INDEPENDENT ARTISTS ARE SCREAMING MURDER!
New York-New York: A study conducted by the Federation of American Musicians, Singers and Performing Artists, Inc. (FAMSPA) revealed how little money, traditional names in entertainment and music earn nowadays, when they perform in local venues, and at Sundays' brunches. A FAMSPA’s officer said: “Here we have a very well-known jazz singer in Manhattan who gets only $150 per session! Ridiculous and alarming! Other gigs bring no more than $400 per performance, and I am taking about big names in the business.” A columnist at Stars Illustrated magazine wrote, “unless they sell lots of copies of their CDs, Jazz and cabaret singers in New York and California will not make enough money to stay in business. Few gigs here and there don't pay the bills. And to sell lots of their CDs, independent artists need a huge publicity and public relations budget. Few can afford it…”
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LESS THAN 4% OF LOCAL ARTISTS IN NEW YORK CITY PERFORM TWICE A WEEK.
Shoshanna Rosenstein, entertainment editor at Stars Illustrated said: “without large promotion and constant articles and reviews, CDs released by independent artists will be forgotten or given away as gifts to friends and family members.” FAMSPA’s study showed that only Rap, Heavy Metal, Acid, and Pop big stars are cashing in. Cabaret and Jazz singers make less than 2% of what big names in Pop, Rock and Heavy Metal usually earn from CDs sales, shows and royalties. The study also revealed that 85% of highly respected cabaret and Jazz singers (females and males), especially in big cities like New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston and Chicago don’t have a regular or a substantial income from live performances, because gigs are scarce. For every venue, there are more 700 artists, and in 99% of all cabaret and jazz conventions, artists perform free of charge. Less than 2% of local professional artists in New York City perform on a regular basis, 1% gets a gig at a Sunday Brunch, and less than 4% perform twice a week.
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IF THEY ANSWER THEIR E-MAILS ON FRIDAY’S AND SATURDAY’S NIGHT, THIS MEANS THEY ARE OUT OF WORK!
Anna Cordoba, a FAMSPA officer said, “I tried to help and promote many of them (Performing artists), no strings attached…and I found out that it is much easier to book them abroad, especially in the UK than to find a spot or a gig for them in the United States. The market in America is saturated. Too many singers and musicians for too few clubs and venues in the United States. Just last week, five of the biggest names in Jazz and cabaret entertainment called me to ask for help; they need work. Two of them have to their credits 5 prestigious awards and yet are unable to find a job. This is terrible. I told them to get out of this mess, they should explore the European market. Europeans adore American artists. And clubs in the UK pay well. I managed to book two of them on the spot at two prestigious concert-halls in London.”
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THE MAJOR PROBLEM ARISES WHEN ARROGANT AND “INEFFECTIVE DORMANT” AGENTS INTERFERE.
“Agents can be a pain in the neck. Sometimes, destructive, because they want to control the business of their clients and protect their fees.” said Cordoba. “The major problem arises when arrogant and “dormant” agents interfere. I understand their concerns. They feared that, help coming from an “outsider” could jeopardize their professional relationship with their clients. So, they come up with all sorts of excuses to screw the deals.” Added Cordoba. American artists and especially female cabaret and Jazz singers work hard for their money. Unfortunately, their resources and means are limited…I am talking here about the lack of effective direct rapport with the music industry executives and decision makers. One way to overcome this dilemma is to attract the attention of the public. How to accomplish this? Don’t kiss asses, don’t knock on doors, instead promote yourself –without further costs- by writing directly to critics and columnists known for their support for the arts and entertainment. Mail them your CDs, press releases, ask for their help and BE HUMBLE! Records companies, music industry executives and “songs plugers” are easily influenced by the media. Keep your agents, but do your own homework, make noise on your own, do not stay distant…”