Using Music…

Not too long ago I worked with an act that was a talking act, but used music. He did used music as a background to talking pieces and also did acts to music. The music should have added a lot to his show, however it didn’t. The way he used the music wasn’t “seamless” and … Continue reading “Using Music…”

Not too long ago I worked with an act that was a talking act, but used music. He did used music as a background to talking pieces and also did acts to music. The music should have added a lot to his show, however it didn’t. The way he used the music wasn’t “seamless” and it wasn’t loud enough.


Let’s tackle the last problem first, since it’s the easiest. There are times when you want music quiet, there are times when you want it loud, and there are times when you want it to vary. The simple solution is to re-record your music tracks at the approximate levels you want them. Background music tracks are quieter than tracks for acts to the music. Simple…Yes, however I’m always amazed more acts don’t do this.


Now for the problem of using music seamlessly. The act I saw had an ipod in their case, and whenever they needed to play music, they had to stop what they were doing, run to the case and change the music. This created a lot of dead time and took the audience out of the moment. The first solution is to use a cue sheet and give it to the sound person. The next solution is to use a remote control. This is one of the better solutions because you can make sure your cues happen when you want them to. It also allows you the freedom to go off script.


Using music effectively from a technical standpoint is easier than ever to do. Years ago recording your tracks with varying audio would have been insanely expensive and using a remote control is simple and reliable now.


Production Value

One of the things that has blown me away is the production value of the acts at the Southern Sideshow Hootenanny.  While some acts (like me) go out and talk and do our thing, the younger acts play much bigger. This is due soley to music. All of the younger people’s acts has music components, … Continue reading “Production Value”

One of the things that has blown me away is the production value of the acts at the Southern Sideshow Hootenanny.  While some acts (like me) go out and talk and do our thing, the younger acts play much bigger. This is due soley to music.


All of the younger people’s acts has music components, and most were timed to the music.  The act was to the music like a dance routine, instead of just hitting a couple of beats.  This makes the whole thing look more like a show, than someone just doing a trick or a stunt.  


Once you add another production element or two, like lighting, or a set piece and these have become theater shows, not bar shows.  How can you add production value to your show to make it a show?