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Band Help! Insight and Tips that Breed Band Success — Part 1: Refined Focus

Band Help! Insight and Tips that Breed Band Success — Part 1: Refined Focus

Hey there. How the hell have you been? I know it's been awhile since we last spoke -- a little too long, actually. I want to assure you that all is well on my end of the computer screen, and I hope that the same goes for you.

Last time you were here with me, we discussed some of my ideas on "training the mind" to better prepare you for your ascension. I hope you took the time to really digest and absorb what was said in order to get the full effect and really feel the power of that particular column. Please let me know if you've gotten anything useful out of it by contacting me at dansugarman12@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you!

Since my last column, I have definitely been getting busy and making good use of my time. Besides finishing out the Never Say Die European Tour 2011, being a part of the almighty Thrash & Burn Tour 2011 (USA) and having a fuckin' blast while doing it, I've started teaching online private guitar lessons through bandhappy.com.

This innovative and forward-thinking website is going to single-handedly change the face of today's music world. It will do this by connecting musicians across the globe and giving anyone the chance to learn from thousands of their favorite musicians. Everyone now has the ability to grow and evolve into an incredible musician with the guidance and helping hand of their own personal influences and musical idols, thanks to this amazing new tool. Five years from now, our idea of talent and virtuosity will be completely different, thanks to BANDHAPPY. Get into it; join the movement.

You can take a lesson with me at virtually any time and date of your choice from the comfort of your own home. Lesson topics can be on literally any subject of your choice, ranging from (but not limited to): mastering the fundamentals and mechanics of proper guitar playing, learning music theory, perfecting the acoustic arts, advanced solo and rhythm techniques, honing your songwriting and creative skills -- all the way to getting personalized band advice and consulting on what steps your band needs to take in order to gain fans, be heard and get noticed by the people who matter.

You can contact me on my BANDHAPPY teacher profile here to schedule your first lesson with me. You will receive a special deal on my hourly rates just by mentioning you've read this column. Make a move. The ball is in your court now!

On top of offering these lessons to those who are interested (Shouldn't you be?), I am also writing the third As Blood Runs Black record, the second Fallen Figure record, as well as starting and writing for various other projects that I have had in the works behind closed doors. One of those projects is called The Ocean Above, another is called Blindlight, and the third one is called CenterSun. Be on the lookout for updates and new music from these bands soon!

To say I'm on an obsessive creative kick at this point in my life would be fair to say, and I won't take offense -- just don't call me crazy! I've been known to write and work on my music at pretty odd times of day and night for hours and hours without even taking a single break. That includes breaks for eating, drinking water, resting my eyes/brain/hands and even just getting up to use the bathroom. Maybe I am crazy?

I feel that once the creative flow has taken over my body and mind that if my concentration is broken, then I will lose the organic flow and momentum of that once-in-a-lifetime moment of creation. That isn't to say you can't jump back into another creative flow, but it just won't be the same as before. In other words, the musical path you take on your second attempt will lead you somewhere else in the end.

Although, sometimes it is wise to interrupt your flow if you've reached a dead end or feel like your brain has turned into mush, but otherwise I tend to commit myself fully to the first organic flow. When this creative mood strikes me and I am possessed by it -- everything, and I mean everything, just kind of falls to the side as my senses shut off. My goal and purpose comes into view, a new level of focus takes over, and then I go into tunnel-vision creation mode. Perhaps I'm channeling messages from another dimension for all I know ... does anybody even know what creativity is or where it comes from? It's a weird thing to be possessed by something so natural, powerful and as unexplainable as music. I'm a slave to it, and I think you are too. That's why you're here, isn't it?

You're here with me now because you're a musician looking for answers -- just like the rest of us. You're here with me right now because you think there is something I might say in the next sentence or two that could help you improve upon your music, or quite possibly even change your way of operating in your daily life. You're still here with me now, reading this very paragraph, because I'm reading your mind ... what? Alright, I'm done with that ... it won't happen again.

Are you in a band looking to take the next step, but you don't feel you have all the pieces that you'll need to be successful? Does your band still have a lot of improvements to make, but you're not quite sure how to do it or where to begin? Maybe you've played some larger gigs, but your band didn't get the reactions or achieve the results that you were looking for? Do you feel like you and your band members put in the time and effort necessary to be the best band you can be -- but you still feel as if there is still room to improve? If so, then this article will help you tremendously.

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