This is a contributed post from Oklahoma musician Grace Babb. We love our contributors. If you are interested in guest-posting for OkSessions, please email us! firstname.lastname@example.org.
These days, whether you’re playing indie-folk or just plain indie, image and branding is paramount. So, when you’re transitioning from rootsy indie-folk to edgier indie, you’re gonna want to pull yourself up by your Chelsea bootstraps and start making the essential changes.
1. Put your trusty folk hat to rest. Now I know you’ve been through a lot. I know it smells like PBR and the Red Rooster (RIP…for now.) I know your ex snagged it at a flea market down south, but I also know you have six and a half songs about that ex on your last EP.
2. Roll your jeans. GODDAMNIT, ROLL YOUR JEANS. The teenie-boppers get suspicious when they can’t see your ankles, and the last group you want to get crossways with are the teenie-boppers. Understanding the “kids these days” is essential, and leads us to step three.
3. Play music to people your age. Face it, the younger generation decides who lives and who dies in this quick-paced, instagram-based fringe-bang eat fringe-bang world. Unfortunately, there will be no potluck house shows with warm cookies, (from scratch) waiting for you post-show. Nope. People your age are just like you: selfish assholes.
4. Embrace the DIY attitude. Now, the indie-folk scene might be a little more comfortable, but the indie scene is innovative and adept. A lot of it is do-it-yourself, which means you have a lot of creative influence: you promote the show on your own, provide the sound system, and–oh yeah, host it at your place.
5. Have an interesting backstory. To really highlight your “unique fresh sound” you’ll need a good tidbit for big groups of dudes to discuss while they chain smoke cigarettes in the backyard as you play to three people inside. Go from a compelling tale of growth and hardship to something equally contrived about how you record all your instruments on tape, by yourself, in the dark, with one hand.
They’ll love that shit.