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Making Moves – Building a local following

Building a local fan base has been tough because I didn’t grow up in New York, so I’m kind of starting fresh. Figuring out where to begin has been difficult. I’ve realized though that I have been thinking too big picture. It’s better to focus on smaller fish in the beginning, find exposure to different circles and try to bring people from those circles together.

I recently spit a few bars at a cypher during Barrelhouse Bklyn’s Yo Barrelhouse Raps BBQ. It felt great to introduce myself to such a tight knit group of people. Barrelhouse has, over the past few years, successfully harnessed a Brooklyn based movement of talented rappers, and true hip hop fans, with a lot of positive energy. Here’s a video from the event. I was the lone whitey in attendance, ha…

I’m grateful to have linked up with Barrelhouse and am looking forward to teaming up with them in the future. I’m still working out the details but, if all goes well, Chi Guy will be hosting its first NY shows with Barrelhouse promoting.┬áThe first show will be before the end of August.

Like I said in the beginning of the post, I am trying to bring a few different circles together with these concerts to build a solid core of Chi Guy followers. So far the concerts look like me performing (either solo or with a band behind me, The Classical Movement), Scienze and Kris Kasanova (two rappers who I was introduced to by my peoples at Barrelhouse who perform with live instruments behind them), and two electronic/dance DJ sets TBD. The hope is that the hip hop crowd will mix with the DJ crowd well. And who doesn’t like to see hip hop with live instruments?

Making Moves – Social Network Updates and Future Plans

After using social networks as Trevor the Trash Man for about a year now I have really figured out what works for me, and what doesn’t. I know that I prefer using Facebook’s artist page above all as the landing site for my fans, though Facebook has its limitations in reach. I know that Twitter’s platform provides the best opportunity to reach new fans if I could only figure out how to use it better (I’m not super comfortable with the hashtags, but getting there). I have given up entirely on Myspace, yet I still update it with status updates through other sites. And ReverbNation is a nice hub of operations, but has provided me with few real opportunities even though I have tried some of their paid premium services for a few months now.

There is no substitute for meeting people face to face. You hear that a lot, but it’s really the truth. I am in the process of planning out a series of four shows with Chi Guy and BarrelHouse and every bit of progress we’ve made has come as a result of meeting people in the real world as oppose to on the Internet.

Future Plans

In my opinion, the average hip hop show I go to leaves a lot of room for improvement. For starters, the sound quality is usually off, and that alone has ruined some shows I’ve been to. Do people really like that much bass? I’m also sick of seeing the tired set up of the rapper with the hype man, and 20 of the rapper’s boys just standing around on stage.

Exhibit A: Waka

The better shows I’ve been to have had lights, dancers, entertainment – something visually appealing going on at all times. Incorporating live instruments into the mix at a hip hop show is also something I have long been a fan of. Yeah it’s a little more work, but it makes for a much better concert-going experience.

Exhibit B: The Experiment feat. Mos Def

For my next show (Date TBD) I am putting together a concert with some thought behind it. It will include video art, and a live band (which I am in the process of forming, called The Classical Movement).

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am in the process of putting out my first album as Trevor the Trash Man entitled The Classical Movement. I have an album’s worth of written material ready to be recorded and am learning how to produce so I can put my material on fresh beats rather than recycled old beats.

Also, check out the new Trevor the Trash Man logo. Designed by yours truly on my iPad.

Trevor the Trash Man Logo

Back from Hiatus

Sorry for abandoning my readers for the last few months. I got distracted with a number of, mostly music related, other things and the blog suffered the brunt of it. In the time since my last post I have played a few shows in Manhattan and Brooklyn, officially started Chi Guy Entertainment as a service provider for independent artists, and am in the process of learning how to be an audio engineer. Starting today the blog is back up and running so expect regular posts in the future.

A Few Updates

  • The yet to be finished Classical Movement pt. 2 Mixtape has become more of a full album, and instead of using instrumentals from famous classical era hip hop songs, I will be producing an entire album of original material inspired by that era. I have spent too much time and effort on writing great material that it would be a shame to waste it on instrumentals ripped off of Youtube.
  • I have also begun work on another project called “Once You Pop…” under the pseudonym Larry Poppins. It will go in a completely different from The Classical Movement as I experiment with more dance music and electronic components.
  • Chi Guy Entertainment’s website is up and running after months of back and forth with my design team. Here is a link to the site: www.chiguyent.com. The site is pretty basic now but it gets the main point across quickly. We recently had our first client, a band called Graphyt Blimp who wanted a logo designed.
  • Although progress has slowed a bit since I have been learning how to produce (rather than writing new material), there hasn’t been many new fans or services to report. But stay tuned for stats from the past couple months. One of my greatest successes has been the music video for The One Who Got Away. To date it has 7,876 views!
  • I am working towards booking a Chi Guy summer concert series to showcase independent hip hop around New York and promote the company. More on that to come…
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