After a search for Halloween music for classical guitar to teach his students turned up nothing Keith Calmes did what a composer does; he composed what his students wanted and what he needed. Halloween Trilogy for Guitar Solo is the new series of student pieces written by Calmes. The ghoulish trilogy offers a spooky selection of music that is fun to practice and nice to listen to while relaxing in your crypt over a bowl of eye of newt, toe of frog, wool of bat, and tongue of dog chowder. The cauldron of melodies are happy and innocent and they double double, boil without toil and trouble. The fire burns, and the caldron bubbles with their dark hints of European exoticism.
Sample and purchase Halloween Trilogy; available through Guitar Chamber Music Press.
Keith earned degrees in Classical Guitar Performance from California State University Northridge, The Juilliard School, and the University of Southern California. He also studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston and Musica en Compostela in Spain. Additional studies with Leo Brouwer, Carlos Barbosa-Lima, Eliot Fisk and Oscar Ghiglia were significantly formative experiences.
Artist website: www.keithcalmes.com
Exploring the services of The Knot in 2017 I explained to the salesperson that in the mid-1990’s I started to advertise with the Knot as it was a new company and I’d give them a shot. In the first week of my site on the Knot going live I received an email from an excited client that wanted exactly what I was offering and was fine with my fee. I was asked to send a contract. After the formal agreement was sent I never heard back from the client. I didn’t give it much thought as I was booked all the time. At the end of the contract I didn’t renew with the Knot for the reason that the only hit I received from advertising with them was the contract that never came through. All of my bookings where from other sources; the Knot became my loss write off.
Brides.com treated me well. Not only was over fifty-percent of my event business through their magazine and website advertising but after many years of business with them I was offered the opportunity to share a table at bridal shows with their sales representative at no cost. I assisted in giving information about their magazine and website service to brides as well as having the ability to hand out information about my own services. I also received a handsome discount on my advertising. I was rolling in events. Sadly, the magazine shut down operations as it was.
To fill the void, I took a risk and signed a contract with the Knot again. My aim was to capture the displaced clients that was created from Brides.com ceasing operations. In the first week of my site with the Knot going live I received an email from an excited client that wanted exactly what I was offering and was fine with my fee. I was asked to send a contract. After the formal agreement was sent I never heard back from the client. I didn’t give it much thought as I was booked all the time. At the end of the contract I didn’t renew another year for the reason that I had two hits; one completed contract and the contract that never came through. All my bookings where from other sources; the Knot became my loss write off.
A few years pass; the Knot has been around and proved the test of time while I watched so many other sites and event suppliers come and go. I decided to take the risk and advertise on their site again. In the first week of my site with them going live I received an email from an excited client that wanted exactly what I was offering and was fine with my fee. I was asked to send a contract which I did. I never heard back from the person. I didn’t give it much thought as I was booked all the time. There was a point in the contract period I negotiated out of the contract. I had to pay a lot but over all saved money on the last two months of the contract. The only call I received from advertising with the Knot was the contract that never came through. Again all of my booking where from other sources; the Knot became my loss write off. I remembered the excited caller and realized a pattern. I also understood my business on the Knot is equal to a Faberge Egg being sold in Walmart not discounted.
At the start of 2017 I wanted to add a backlink for my website from inside the wedding industry. I didn’t want to spend a lot as I keep my site very well optimized. This expense would be a cherry on a well iced cake. I chose the Knot again mainly because of it’s low price. The sales person also told me of many changes that have been made to attract different levels of customers to their site. When I made the decision this time to advertise with them again despite a poor performance record I went into it expecting zero business but was hoping to be proven wrong. It was a mistaken belief to think the sales pitch had any merit. Now going into the fifth month of the contract my expectations sadly have been meet except for one.
In the first week of my site with them going live I received an email from an excited client that wanted exactly what I was offering and was asked to send a contract. This time I did hear back from the client.
This is what I didn’t expect:
I am happy to tell you that my assistant has mailed out your check but there is a little mix up from her. She was supposed to send out 2 checks today, one for you and another for the wedding planner. She mistakenly sent the whole payment to you. Please David, I will really appreciate if you could deduct your deposit and help send the remaining funds to the wedding planner. Your help will be greatly appreciated.
I will return the envelope as soon as I receive it and wait for another. The date is reserved for you.
I never received the check that was already mailed out. That’s it! For the other three contract periods my excited client was a scam artist trying to isolate their prey. The consistency in my three other contracts has been zero business and three attempted scams. This fourth and the last time is running the same course. Scams are unavoidable in any internet interaction. I do not hold the Knot responsible for the attempts I received from the fictitious client. I alerted my sale representative as soon as I realized what transpired this time. They were quick to reply and I was satisfied with their response regarding the fake leads but others issues regarding the poor performance have received no reply.
Currently my goal of backlink for my website has failed miserably. My stats on the Knot analytics page show my site to be charting way below average and my Google analytics show no sign of the Knot on any dashboards. I stopped checking in on my Knot page. The only place I see the Knot name is on my credit card statement each month.
My first advertising campaign was a foul ball, the second was a strike, the third was a strike this is their last strike coming up. They are out of the series after this.
The lesson of this story is to be careful if you are starting an advertising campaign. If something doesn’t seem right it isn’t.
The lesson of this story is to think about the clients you want to attract. I have received one hit from a real client this contract period. Their price interest was $100; not the service I supply. My need is for clients who understand, appreciate and want quality work.
The lesson of the story is that if you’re looking for cheap you will get it. Do you want to work twice as hard with a low paying clientele or earn twice as much with the right clientele?
The lesson of the story is to Google search feedback on the service you want to advertise with. Read the forums from different vendors.
The lesson of this story is that the Knot struck out for this sole proprietor. I should have invested with a service that had a track record for performance. In advance I had no expectation of developing a clientele from prior experiences. My new attempt to use the site as backline has also fallen short of reasonable expectations.
The lesson of this story is that other services have given me the experience of feeling looked after. The knot doesn’t offer that experience. I do not hear from my sales representatives. In all the other business transactions I engage in that involve sales reps a positive relationship has developed because of follow up.
In short the evening was an amazing night of two extraordinary guitar players.
The interplay between the duo Lage & Eldridge kept the packed audience at Johnny Brenda’s silent throughout the evening. Their compositions are what happens when bluegrass, jazz, classical and the avant-garde are synthesized trough the two.
Every note was a breath the two took as they read and played off each effortlessly often improvising intricate and delicate melodies to rhythms. The sound was outstanding with both players unplugged playing to the mic between them. The music was fresh and genuine. For Critter from their first recording together was the first of many pieces that brought an eruption of applause. Each twist and turn in their arsenal of sound exemplified their understanding of harmonic structure and ability to communicate. The tonal qualities of the two guitars highlighted the presentation.
“Two dudes playing guitar for a room full of standing up people is something we can’t take for granted” said Eldridge as they introduced their final song of the night. The one hour twenty-minute set was a mix of originals and standards that went by to fast. Eldridge was correct in his assessment. Brenda’s is a standing room venue with a few bar stools on the balcony. They held the audience on every note; the only sound one could hear came from their guitars.
Marcelo Coronel was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1962. As a child he learned to sing simple Argentine folksongs while playing along with a guitar. The styles of urban music later exposed Marcelo to a world of new sounds. He eventually entered the School of Music at the National University of Rosario, where he formalized his musical education before graduating with an advanced degree in Music – Emphasis on Guitar. Paralleling his university course work, Marcelo studied harmony and counterpoint with the composer Dante Grela. As a performer Marcelo has participated in a number of popular and chamber music ensembles.
JULIAN LAGE & CHRIS ELDRIDGE ON TOUR IN SUPPORT OF NEW ALBUM MOUNT ROYAL
the virtuosic guitar duo will make a stop at Johnny Brenda’s in Philadelphia, PA on March 8.
Artist website: www.lageeldridge.com/
Tickets: An Evening with Julian Lage & Chris Eldridge
Lage is a renowned jazz guitarist who has collaborated with a range of musicians—Nels Cline, Gary Burton, and Fred Hersch, to name a few. According to the New Yorker, he belongs “in the highest category of improvising musicians, those who can enact thoughts and impulses as they receive them.” Eldridge is a veteran of the bluegrass world, cutting his teeth in the legendary outfits the Seldom Scene and the Infamous Stringdusters before anchoring Punch Brothers, an acoustic supergroup that combines folk instrumentation with pop and experimental songcraft. When they play together, however, they do not represent the genres or styles with which they have long been identified. Instead, they make music simply as friends and individuals who happen to have unique ideas and techniques.
Sunday January 8, 2017
Settlement Music School
416 Queen Street
Tickets: Marco Sartor
Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, Marco Sartor is a top prize winner in numerous international competitions. He has performed solo and chamber music recitals in three continents to critical and public acclaim and has appeared with orchestras in the US and South America. His debut solo recording for Fleur de Son Classics, “Red,” has received rave reviews and been broadcast on national radio. Marco is also featured on Marc Regnier’s GRAMMY-Nominated album “Radamés Gnattali: Solo & Chamber Works for Guitar” on Dorian Sono Luminus, and the recently released “Tempo do Brasil” on Reference Recordings.
As an active pedagogue, Marco Sartor has given numerous master-classes in universities and conservatories in the USA and abroad. He has designed and implemented successful guitar programs at the Carnegie Mellon Music Preparatory School in Pittsburgh, PA, the Charleston Academy of Music in Charleston, SC, and the “System of Youth and Children Orchestras” in Uruguay. He is currently the college division guitar instructor at the New World School of the Arts in Miami, FL.
Marco has completed the highly-selective Master of Musical Arts program (Doctoral Residency) at Yale University, earning the Friedmann Prize for his thesis. He also received degrees from the College of Charleston and Carnegie Mellon University. His former teachers include Robert Ravera, Mario Payssé and Eduardo Fernández in Uruguay, and Marc Regnier, James Ferla and Benjamin Verdery in the USA.
Presented by the Philadelphia Classical Guitar Society