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15 October 2010

GET LINKED IN FOR FUN AND PROFIT

EDITORIAL
Right folks, it’s time to get linked in and have some fun. You’ll possibly have noticed a new gadget in one of the right-hand columns of this page. It’s a direct link to the MuzoBlog discussion group hosted by LinkedIn, a networking service used by thousands of professionals in all manner of industries, including music. People post resumés, messages, work up contact networks and generally stay, ahem, ‘in the loop’ so as to further whatever venture they’re adventuring upon. But MuzoBlog already has Facebook accounts for both muzos and industry types, namely Muzo Community and Corporate Muzo, as well as comment boxes at the base of each post. And a Twitter account (hey, be sweet and follow my tweets). So, why another interactive extra? Here’s for why...


Get Gigs


I get a fair slew of correspondence from folk who feel unconfident about adding informed comment to MuzoBlog posts. And there’s an army of acts out there, including solo musicians, bands and DJs, just gagging to plug what they do. There are also those who, while not actively or seriously making music, have an interest as dabblers or listeners, keen to keep track of new tracks bubbling up from independent acts. It’s all a little off-topic for core MuzoBlog content, but via LinkedIn, I’m able to perform a number of social-networky-type tricks.

Artists, bands, acts, or whatever you like to call them, can plug away about their latest outpourings, while nutters for new music can dive in and scope out what’s going on under the radar (I’m a bastard for mixing metaphors, y’know). Meantime, newbie muzos, or those struggling with music-technology and performance technique, can discourse on such diverse subjects as ‘what’s an RTAS when it’s at home?’, or ‘which gauge of plectrum is best for shred?’. ‘What’s the worst album you’ve heard recently?’ ‘Why do men have nipples?’ As you’ll have gathered, it’s an informal forum, although I’m hoping people will stick to the musically relevant and not wander off into the realms of string theory (unless they’re guitar strings) or Russian grammar (unless Zemfira’s made a lyrical howler on her latest single).

Naturally, to join in you’ll need to create a LinkedIn account and profile, and add me (Karl Foster) as a connection, but such an account could forward your day-job career, re-acquaint you with long-lost colleagues and maybe hook you up with music-industry types worth knowing. There’ll doubtless be more spam arriving at the MuzoBlog group than the entire population of Valhalla could stomach, which is why I’ll be moderating it. But such a forum is another length of horse-hair to MuzoBlog’s ever more lively Pernambucan rod. What I need from you folk is the rosin to keep things resonating. Put more sanely, I’d like to see MuzoBlog open to as wide an audience as possible, from music fan to committed musician. It can’t all be done from the blog’s main page, so it makes sense to spread things out across the infotainment superAutobahn. That is, after all, what ARPA had in mind in the first place. Well, that and the Sputnik.

Oh, and if you’re wondering whether I’m getting some kind of kick-back from LinkedIn by mounting a recruitment campaign, I’m not. Much to the irritation of my creditors. I’ve earned not 1¢ from any of this MuzoBlog malarkey (well, maybe a few pennies from the click-throughs on the Google Adsense ads. And I do mean pennies.). I guess that for me, motivation lies in the pleasure of playing with music-making gadgets and then putting word to processor. But the best thing of all is hearing from site visitors and interacting with each. Just as bands adore an audience, even though they’re sometimes pretentious enough to pretend not to, a blogger revels in relationship with readership. While it’s the bane of the live-sound engineer, feedback is sound stuff for scribes. And Jimi Hendrix impersonators.

So keep your comments coming in, convince me that I’m not just howling into a virtual void, maybe meet like-minded muzos and engage with music enthusiasts while you’re at it. Mission on...


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