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Heckling

Special guest blog on Heckling in the new Social Media World, by Clifton Printy

ShoutingHeckling

Heckling is generally defined as trying to…

”…to embarrass and annoy (someone speaking or performing in public) by questions, gibes, or objections; badger.”
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/heckling

However, it is also a more subtle problem. I would further define it as intentional and unintentional acts that cause breaks, gaps, disruption, and interruption of the performance.

Most of the performers here on StreetJelly are not technological wizards freshly instilled with a degree in sound engineering or computer programming. It is their intention to share a passion and love with you. Many of them are in fact singular musicians who have only begun to perform publicly online.

Please remember that as an audience member you have a job. You came for a great performance. Here’s how you get one.

  1. Encourage, Encourage, Encourage
    • “This song is OWNT!” (David Wesley)
    • “Super Great”
    • “That song was awesome”
    • “Holy Moly” (Frankie)
    • CNTRL Clappy Clappy Clappy
    • “You are amazing”
  2. Sell
    • Put the performer’s link in the chat.
    • Chat to and about the performer. (DCrann)
    • Favorite the artist so you can see when they are on.
    • Share their performance links on social media pages.

Now for the hard pill to swallow. If you are not going to pay for production, or transportation for tutelage, and/or are not Simon Cowell; then it is probably not helping if you critique the performer’s style, ability, prowess, set-list, or looks. These things stall the performance at the least and completely decimate an artist’s timing at most. Think about it! They are remembering the chord progression, the lyrics, the pitch, the tempo, and the punch line introduction to their next song. As they answer a question about how they are, read a side joke between Image and Clifty that makes no sense what-so-ever, and quiet their friend who has just barged in; you say, “raise the bass a little.” It is completely disarming! Worse still, when a musician has a connection problem or a sound problem that is not readily repairable, he or she is constantly attacked.

Look out folks, I am just getting wound up. Making a request from an artist usually involves having an understanding of the artist. However, you have to remember that you are trying to make the show better. If you ask Image and Family to play Pantera, you are unequivocally heckling with malicious intent. As funny as it would be, we should remember that our job as an audience is to enjoy the show. For the Image and Family show, a good request may be Drunken Sailor by Great Big Sea. Continuing on with this particular vent, there are people who understand this. Ever notice that when someone is barraging the request-o-meter with impossibles that a Don Gaynor or a Damian will come in and request a song they are sure the artist is good at. They are a practical participating audience.

Important and most obvious: not every performer is for you. If you don’t like a show or performer, just leave the show. Everyone has something to offer, but maybe not to you. Be polite, too. An explicit comment may work sometimes, but not other times. Remember that your chat is visible to not only those here but those who will join in a moment. If you know you are derailing the show, pull back and encourage. You are the audience, not the heckler.

Also, a certain persistent problems frequently arise from a free to use site of this nature. Please be kind and courteous. Smoking weed, swearing, illicit sexual content, vulgarity are not always appropriate in the conversation and/or the performance. Many of us are here for pure music and art. We are all of different values, culture, and political opinion. Going into a family performance such as Image and Family’s show, or Lana Eve’s performance with illicit sexual rhetoric is more than a social faux pas: it is blatantly rude. Would you act like that at the White House, church, grandma’s house? I bet not. Could you drop a licidious comment at Molotov Colostomy’s show? Sure, they are a different sort of musicians all together. But you shouldn’t go there and try to pull a sermon off, either. Very honestly, you are not anonymous and it is not your chat. It is the artists’ show, and all viewers are entitled to hear and enjoy that performer without the rudeness and distractions from a few jerks. Make sure you know the performers and their sense of propriety before you try to shout out the familiar…. or you will really be a heckler.

Clifton PrintyLikewise, performers need to remember to be cognizant of the camera personally seeing boogie sleeve wipes, a crotch torn out of a pair of jeans, a funny cigarette, a nose pick, (special woman note: don’t bend down in front of a desktop cam), and pay attention to what you have in the frame around you since you are also live to the world.

Last, most performers here are willing to play for free, and we do. But your tipping shows us that we have value. Want preferential request treatment, familiarity, and kinship, then give compliments that come from the heart. You will know if it’s good if it builds friendship, and makes it more enjoyable for the listener and the performer.

P.S. Believe me, some of this is learned from personal mistakes. Our personal accountability will keep StreetJelly.com a wonderful and rare respite on the internet.

Landon With a Cold

Special guest blog by Clifton Printy

sick woman singerLandon With a Cold

As fall descends on StreetJelly I am reminded of the now infamous article about the legendary Frank Sinatra. “Frank Sinatra Has a Cold” in Esquire Magazine April, 1966 written by Gay Talese. It’s not really the article I am citing though, just that wonderful title.

The incomparable Random Landon was playing live via our StreetJelly internet stream with the rattley scratchy throat of a man with a serious sinus infection. It is an addiction, a compulsive narcissistic driven desire to play that one song that will get the listener off the couch and clicking clappies in the chat.

I, too, have played the StreetJelly show with a hoarse and raw throat, and have even witnessed the newest “Big Deal” pin awardee Lana Eve singing show tunes on the edge of laryngitis. Oh to reminisce into the days of last December as “bumS_lie” coughs out a few songs to keep his one hundred midnight show streak alive.

If Picasso had no paint, or Samuel Langhorne Clemens had no pen, would they still perform? I think so. They, being driven by that desire to reach out and touch someone else, ever so briefly, would be compelled to paint with eggs. Perhaps even write with charcoal. The art endows the artist to a point of total obedience to the art. I am a StreetJelly performer.

With a box of decongestant in one hand and a package of Kleenex in the other, I set up the webcam. While plugging in the microphone and adjusting levels, I stop by the mirror to make sure my mustache is free and clear. Finally, I take one last moment to survey the degree of my sinus headache. Deciding it was Ibuprofen worthy, I have a pill and a glass of water and push the broadcast button.

But, be cautious my StreetJelly Friends, a sinus problem can make your singing life miserable. Conditions like allergies and sinus infections cause the tissue in the throat and larynx to swell. This condition will eventually lead to hoarseness. If severe symptoms are present, it is time for a medical professional. Treating with mild antihistamines and / or decongestant can help. You made need to use anti-drying medications with an antihistamine, such as Entex. Hydrating medications may also help to combat dry atmospheric conditions. Please don’t abuse your throat. Constant misuse of the Larynx may cause laryngitis short term and polyps long term. Just take care of yourselves, tips are waiting to be had. No worries, www.StreetJelly.com is not going anywhere.

For some more information you could consult this article.
http://www.voiceteacher.com/mathis.html

Just like Old Frankie Blue-eyes and the guys at the Lucky Strike, the show will go on. Be safe and be Super Great.

Year One in the Books

Happy First Year Anniversary, StreetJelly!

Jellypalooza Cake…and what a year it has been.  StreetJelly.com is a year old now.  We’ve come a long way from our “opening night,” learned a lot, made a ton of new friends, and mostly importantly had a whole lot of fun watching live music on webcam from phenomenal musicians.  Here are some quick stats from our first year:

  • 26,000 visitors came to the site 95,000 times
  • ½ million page hits
  • 250,000 minutes of streaming video, 4,200 hours
  • 5,900 musicial performances
  • 700 musicians joined StreetJelly
  • 81,095 tokens tipped to musicians, $13,000.

Timeline Highlights

August 15th, 2012 – web site launched.

August 17th, 2012 – First performance by Teo_Doro.

The First Two Weeks – The following famous SJ musicians found and joined the site: JerseyJB (day 5), MountainMelodies (day 7), Miea (day 9).

Lana EveFirst Week in SeptemberLana Eve joins the site (day 18).

Second Week in September – Lana Eve falls off chair live on SJ while foot scrolling.

Third Week in September – Lana Eve masters foot scrolling.

Big Deal Rocker PinDecember 26th, 2012 – First Big Deal rocker pin (500 tokens) tipped to Image and Family.  It’s an exclusive club – just ask Clifty, Merv, or Lana!

New Year’s Eve 2012 – Rang in the New Year with live performances and Auld Lang Syne for each five U.S. time zones.

February 2013bumS_lie completes 100 Midnight Shows in a row.

February 26-28, 2013 – StreetJelly participates and sponsors the first Virtual Music Conference hosted by IndieConnect in Nashville, TN.Marriage Proposal Jelly Style

April 6th, 2013Merv proposes marriage to Amanda live during their show.  Very sneaky, Amanda was totally surprised.  Watch the YouTube video.

April 13th, 2013 – First StreetJelly Meetup in Nashville, TN to celebrate the Flyer Contest, draw the contest winners, and meet local Jelly Musicians in person.
King Haggis
April 27th, 2013 – The Haggis Challenge, ’nuff said.

April 30th, 2013 – 100 Song music marathon by JerseyJB.  514 minutes, 8½ hours of continuous jamming by one musician on The Jelly!  Jersey wasn’t seen for days after that.

June 2013 – Radio advertising campaign blitz in Nashville market. (Buy me a beer sometime and I’ll tell you how that went.  Oy!  ~frankie)

July 2013 – StreetJelly’s first Singer Songwriter Contest.  62 entries, 10 Semi-finalists, Second Place Winner: Third Prong, First Place: Scott ThomasClifty Play Behind Back

August 3rd, 2013Clifton Printy performs his 450th broadcast.

August 17th, 2013Scott Thomas gets married and performs as the band for his own wedding …and streams live on StreetJelly!

Jellypalooza
August 18th, 2013 – Jellypalooza Online Music Festival!  StreetJelly celebrates its one-year anniversary with the first ever truly Online Live Streaming Music Festival.  12 hours straight of continuous multiple streaming musicians.  All the great Jelly Fish were there performing: Jayro, Lana, Maestro, Damian, Ben, Mountain Melodies, Life and Times, Image and Family, Clifty, Kurt, Jersey, and many more.  The wonderful Jelly Musicians also secretly conspired to present Frank Podlaha, a.k.a. Frankie, founder of StreetJelly, with a commemorative plaque.

StreetJelly One Year Anniversay

“What a year it has been!  We could never have imagined how successful, and how much fun StreetJelly has become.  And thank you to ALL the folks that helped so hard in making this the best live streaming music site on the ‘net!”  ~frankie

 

Top 20 Countdown – Bleh

InspirationThe other day I was flipping through the cable TV channels and settled on a Top 20 Music Countdown show.  I was so underwhelmed!

After watching this countdown show for about an hour (I didn’t last the full two hours), it made me start to wonder what was so mediocre about it.

Then it hit me, I wasn’t entertained.  The music, the videos, the try-too-hard-to-make-a-cool-video camera angles were so uninspiring.  The passion didn’t come through from the artists.  I couldn’t help but comparing the videos to the over sensationalized local news “stories.”  You know them well, you watch them every evening.  The local-beat reporter spends around 60 seconds on a bit.  They stretch a 10 second statement of the actual news fact into a superfluous series of one-liners and sound bites.  Worse, the video is almost always a series of 3 second clips.  Watch it next time, on each new camera angle count to the three!  These music videos were the same way.  Lame.

Most of you that know me understand that I’m not a ranting type of guy; I don’t care for politics, controversy, and especially cynicism.  Who am I to say what is “wrong with the world today” or even just the music industry?  But I want to tell you what I witnessed on StreetJelly in the past six months that blows away pop culture music.  Nothing speaks better through music than the passion of a live and intimate performance.

Yes, I am very biased toward SJ.  But it’s true, I’ve never been able to experience so much love in music since we launched the website last fall.  I actually feel sorry for the mainstream consumer being fed their formulaic music videos.  They are really missing out on the art of music.

~Frankie, the Founder (a.k.a. King) of StreetJelly

What would you change if you made a music video today?

Singer Songwriter Contest – Tips and Suggestions

Attention Artists! Submit your ORIGINAL song to the StreetJelly “Singer Songwriter Contest” for a chance at prizes, industry recognition, and the opportunity to present your song to publishers. Create a video of yourself performing your original song, and the StreetJelly community will vote on the winners.

Music Contest WinnerHello Ladies and Jellymen, Frankie here!  You all know we’re having the songwriter’s contest.  Let me tell you a little more how we’re handling the submissions, what the judges are looking for, and what to expect from viewer voting.

We have a panel of six judges.  They include musicians, music teachers, music industry experts, and …well, me!  The judges will be picking ten finalists.  The StreetJelly community will then get to vote for their favorite from the ten finalists.

The judges will all be using a form rating sheet to assign points to various categories.  We’ll use these scores to fairly and consistently rank the Top 10.  Here are the categories:

  • Structure – Segments, components, length, and arrangement.  (10 points)
  • Melody – Is it pleasing to the ear?  (10 points)
  • Dynamic – The use of musical rise, fall, sustain, staccato to bring the listener “somewhere.”  (10 points)
  • Lyrics – meaningful words that make you think.  (10 points)
  • The Hook – Is it stuck in your head later?  (10 points)
  • Rhythm and Rhyme Scheme – The groove, the phrasing, the poetics and the feel of the song.  (10 points)
  • Overall Likability – This is the subjective feeling for the judge.  How well do you like it.  (40 points)

So when you submit your original songs, or anytime you write a song, keep all this in mind.  But you already know this.  Let me make a suggestion about the videos.  It’s perfectly fine to submit us a video you already have on YouTube.  (Btw, we want your link to your YouTube channel so you get the benefit of all the new viewer counts.)  Feel free, however, to make a new video and talk a little before and / or after your performance about the song.  You will make a better impression about your song by explaining the lyrics, the story behind it, the day you wrote it, whatever.

This is a great tip not only for the contest, but anytime you upload an original song video to YouTube.  Unless you have the fan-base of The Bieb, chances are few people will find your video and watch it for its merit.  But some people will find and watch the video out of curiosity.  You have a short opportunity to make a lasting impression about your song.

We all like art more when we make a connection with an artist.  Think about it, how many times have you watched a DVD movie that was only average?  But after you watched all the behind-the-scene extras and actor interviews that come with the DVD; you somehow liked the movie more.  Same thing works with music.  We like songs better when we like the musician.  Even taking 10 or 15 seconds to introduce yourself and your song makes a favorable impression on the viewer (and judges).  Makes them feel welcomed.

Ok, you get the idea:  being personable will help in the judging round, AND it will really help in the voting round.  The viewers and fans on StreetJelly will vote most exclusively by likability.  I hate to say a lot of this sounds like marketing, but it is.  However, marketing is a big part in becoming a successful singer songwriter!  Best of luck to everyone entering the contest, we can’t wait to hear …and see, all your songs.

 

Book Review: Jarimi Hugaerm by Clifton Printy

Special guest blog by Kurt Van Hook from Vermont, USA.  Kurt reviews the science fiction novel by our very own StreetJelly blues guitarist Clifton Printy.

“By the light of the purple sciant orb” A review of Jarimi Hugaerm by Clifton Printy

Jarimi HugaermClifton Printy’s energetic noir phantasmagoria, the winner of this year’s Street Jelly Fiction Award, crackles with original ideas.

The title refers to a young prisoner of war, who finds himself possessed of boatloads of magical power, or sciant, which may or may not allow him to bed (scare off) a beautiful, super-model-slash-witch, and save (destroy) the world in the process.

Following an unexplained underground event, a trio of doomed immortals emerges from their subterranean crypt to find out what’s been doing on the surface for the last millennium. The reader is then taken on a whirlwind tour of nightmarish dungeons, cult circles and herb farms.

Without giving too much away, let this reviewer simply suggest that the ending roughly parallels one that would emerge should, let’s say, there were to be a head on collision between cars driven by the lead characters of Pynchon’s “Gravity’s Rainbow” , Wallace’s “Infinite Jest” and Heller’s “Catch-22”. Then, imagine that the survivors of that horrific crash were to somehow pilot a plane to a deserted island and were soon joined by the cast and crew of “Game of Thrones”. After a marathon, double-elimination bocce tournament, and a tequila fueled, all-night, blow-out of a party celebrating the bocce champion, everybody suddenly stops  what they are doing at precisely 7:00am and quietly reflect with gratitude on all that has transpired in the past year. Everybody, that is, except the guy who plays Robb Stark, who is still blindly pissed off and angry that his character was killed off at the fucking “red” fucking “wedding”.

Jarimi Hugaerm is required reading for all denizens of the Jelly Street. Be put on notice, SJ’ers, you will be tested.  Available on amazon.com.

Caution: StreetJelly Flies are Biting

JellyflyCaution: You may have been bitten by the StreetJelly Fly?Jellyfly

StreetJelly FlyHow has StreetJelly changed your music listening, daily habits?  I’ll start…

I was listening to music on my headphones, a Grateful Dead ‘tube, and when a song was over…  I reached for my mouse to clap with smileys!  There are no clappy’s on YouTube. LOL  ~frankie

Almost everynight when I say bye on Facebook chat, I keep instictively go looking for a waving smiley to say bye.  ~merv

Musicians I love always come on when I’m cooking dinner.
Frankie gets a lot of burnt meals now. ~martina

Got StreetJelly Syndrome symptoms? Add them below…

Haggis Videos

King HaggisHere are all three videos of Clifton, Frankie, and Merv slopping their way through the Haggis Eating Challenge.  It all started months ago with a dare to eat haggis, a Scottish dish of mushed lamb guts, live on StreetJelly.  It’s quite silly, and a bit gross.  Enjoy.

 

Part One – Clifton (Ode to Haggis)

 

Part Two – Frankie (raw from the can)

 

Part Three – Merv (plus montage)

You’ve been Volunteered into the Jelly Army

You’ve been volunteered into the Jelly Welcome Army!

Uncle Jelly SamWhen I was in the Army, I was often “hey you’d,” as we would say.  “Hey you, you just volunteered yourself to stay tonight and clean out the 1st Sergeant’s office.”   Of course, I was thinking more like, “hey whaaaaaat?”  As time goes by and the more things change, well, the more things stay the same.  Hey You, you’ve been volunteered to be part of the Jelly Welcome Army!  (Don’t worry, I clean my own office.  Ok, that’s not true, but it gets cleaned somehow.)

As StreetJelly grows everyday, a warm welcome to new users and artists into the Jelly Nation goes such a long way.  So all my Jelly Friends, please take these few steps whenever you see a new musician or viewer on the site.

 

New Viewers

  • Say “Hello” and “Welcome to StreetJelly” whenever you encounter a new user.
  • Help new users understand some of the crazy words we use in Jelly Land with a brief explanation.
  • Same thing with Smileys, explain any not-so-obvious meanings.  For example, new users have no idea what the fly means the first time they see it.  Add a quick note like “(listening only)” so they understand.

New Artists (first time performing)

  • Say “Hello” and “Welcome to StreetJelly.”
  • Give them feedback on their sound. But please don’t overwhelm them with too much tech talk.  They may be new to webcam and USB mic technology, so you don’t want to scare them off.  If their sound is at least decent, tell them “we can tweak it later when you get more comfortable on the site.”
  • Explain any features on the site they many not understand like tokens, Rocker Pins (badges), play lists, etc.
  • Take a moment to scroll down and read the artist’s profile.  You’ll be surprised how interesting some of them are and it may help you strike up a conversation with the musician.
  • Keep the chat conversation focused on the musician. This is kind of a tricky one, but important.  A brand new musician performing on the site is probably a bit uncomfortable or nervous with this new format.  It’s not that easy to keep up with chat messages, respond, talk, play, remember chords / lyrics, and so on.  It can be overwhelming to new artists if the chat is inundated with tons of unrelated messages, personal conversations, and zillions of smileys.

The key to being part of the Jelly Welcome Army is to remember how you first experienced StreetJelly in the early days.  I know we all have fun on the site now, go a bit nuts with smileys, and joke some really bad whoppers.  But remember that a musician’s performance is like an invitation into their living room.  We wouldn’t want to be invited in someone’s house and ignore their presence.

I hope we’ve been able to give everyone (as much as humanly possible) a warm welcome when they found StreetJelly.  Now it’s your turn to return the same welcome to all the new people.  Pay it forward and many thanks, Jelly Friends!
~frankie

Any other tips how to welcome new viewers and musicians?