Don’t be bored this spring break – have a creative time away from DIME!
1. Organize a rehearsal!
There are lots of places to rehearse in Denver during your time off! DIME students usually would take advantage of our amazing live room to book rehearsals. Rehearsing is very important! Get your new songs together and work on your live show. Denver is home to some great rehearsal studios.
Check out Rocket Space Studios who have rooms starting from $8 an hour – which is very reasonable! Remember being prepared for a show is the only way you continue to get gigs!
TIP – get there early and get in the room on time to get the most out of the session.
2. Write a song
Start writing a song during spring break! Use your time off to create something new, this is a great time to grab a songwriting partner and co-write a song. Songwriting is an important skill for anyone to continue to perfect. Remember it doesn’t have to be you playing the song, you can write songs for other people and for any genre. So challenge yourself to write something different this spring break.
TIP – There are plenty of techniques to get more from your songwriting. Try ‘stream of consciousness writing’- get a pen and paper and put a timer on for 4 minutes. Write without thinking until the end, the only rule is DO NOT STOP! At the end of this you should have lots of lyric ideas, even if you just use certain lines or phrases. This should get your creativity going!
3. Go see a show!
Find out who is in town playing a show and get out there! Watching a live set is a great way to get ideas for your own performances and will also help your songwriting and inspiration in general. Try to see a show that is not within your favorite genres. Maybe go to a rock show if you are an acoustic singer, or see a rap night if you are a metal guitarist – you will be surprised what you get from doing this.
Denver is home to some of the best venues in America including Bluebird Theater, Red Rocks, Lions Lair, Larimer Lounge, Meadowlark and the Hi-Dive. This spring break there are some great shows happening!
TIP – Download the bandsintown app to see all the shows happening around you! You can also follow your favorite bands and will be alerted when they are playing near you.
4. Watch a music documentary
Learning what worked well for other musicians is an important way to improve your chances of making a living in the music industry. At DIME we have masterclass sessions where we invite professional musicians to come speak to our students. We have had Neyla Pekarek (Lumineers), Paolo Nutini, Stevie Wonder’s band, Thunderduo and many more. This has proven valuable experience for our students. Documentaries are great way of catching some of this invaluable advice.
5. Write a music blog
Blogs are a great way to connect with other people and other musicians. Write about something you are passionate about and you will undoubtedly gain an audience. Some ideas… post some lyrics, write about something going on in the news, talk about a new song you are writing, start a debate…
TIP – research music blogs and find a style or genre that you like and break into the community.
6. Record an acoustic video
It is very easy nowadays to record acoustic videos. Cover videos are great ways to connect with new audiences and if you do them well they can reach millions of people. You can do this simply just by using your laptop webcam and record the audio. But if you want your video to be really successful, get yourself a condenser microphone and a decent camera. Then record the audio through a program like Garageband and sync the video to the audio and voila! You have an acoustic video!
TIP – keep an eye on the current hot tracks and record a song that is about to drop. This will get you a lot more views as people will be searching for it more.
Spring Break shouldn’t just be about staying inside. Go and travel and see new places. This is a great way to give you inspiration. Remember to take a travel guitar, a notepad and your phone so you can write songs on the road. You are bound to write some great songs this way. Make sure you chat to other musicians along the way, play open mic nights and build your network!
8. Learn a new song
Push yourself this spring break to learn a new song. Learning a song can help you improve your technique and it is always great to increase your repertoire.
TIP – Pick something challenging, try not to learn from TAB or chord charts; see if you can learn by ear!
9. Take a photo!
Artists and bands need good photos! If you want to get your social media presence rolling, then this is super important. However, it is vital not to take bad quality photos. If you have a friend with a great camera then get them involved. Otherwise use your phone and take some Instagram photos.
TIP – think about outfits – bring a few different options and try to coordinate with your other band mates.
10. Have fun and relax!
Spring Break should be fun and is a great time to get organized and prepare for your upcoming semester! Relax, make sure you have enough sleep and come back ready to make music your life!
TIP – Try out yoga and meditation to take your well-being to the next level – there are lots of free YouTube videos that you take advantage of.
If you are looking to get into the music business, MSU Denver at DIME Denver is currently offering programs in Commercial Music Performance (Guitar, Bass, Drums, Vocals), Commercial Songwriting and Music Industry Studies. Take a look at our program pages for more information.
To find out more about DIME Denver and our programs in partnership with Metro State University please fill out the form below: