Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!  In the spirit of holiday traveling, we have an episode all about touring.

In October 2022, Isabel Olive (Half Gringa) posted the following on Instagram:

"Hey folks. A photo of me smiling because this is a tough one - I’ve decided to cancel the last four dates of the HG October tour in Boston, NYC, Philadelphia, and Cincinnati. This was hard to make because I’m both the artist and the manager, but the manager in me looked at the writing on the wall and knew it was time to call it.

Touring is extra expensive and extra hard right now. Whether you’re a band on a support tour playing to sold out rooms trying to make enough on merch to cover expenses or (in my case) trying to win over a few groups of people at a time in 150 cap rooms while paying a band with your job money and hoping to break even, it is harder than it was before and what has happened in the last few years has caught up to a lot of us.

I’m 31, I work full time in a different industry in addition to being a musician to pay the band and make things work as best I can. But I am so sick of people devaluing art to the point that we’re relying on no income to make it. It’s untenable. And it’s why people are canceling tours and in some cases getting out of the industry all together.

I have so much more anger and feelings about this, but for now I’ll say: thanks to my incredible band, to everyone who came and saw us and bought merch, to the fellow musicians I met who commiserated with me and gave me some much needed words of encouragement. You’re the best part of this. To the folks in Boston, NYC, Philly - you can get refunds at your point of purchase and I promise I’ll see you out there again soon."


Josh first noticed Izzy's post and pointed me to it.  We thought this would make a great episode.  So many musicians are struggling with feeling valued in our culture. 

Izzy and I talk about why she canceled her shows, and how this is impacting her music and career.  She also shares how she’s adapting her approach to touring from now on.  

For anyone else struggling with making touring work, this is a great episode that acknowledges the challenges facing musicians right now.

We also listen to Half Gringa’s brilliant new single “Miranda” off her upcoming EP, out January 27, 2023.

*******************************

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.

 

 

What's it like to walk away from the music industry?

Steff Reed is a New York-based  musician, educator, and activist. As a musician and producer, he has produced many tracks that have made it to Billboard Charts.  As an educator, he has taught thousands of youth over the past 15 years, and was nominated for the Grammy Music Educator Award.  As an activist, he is currently building a non-profit in Brooklyn called Power of Love.

We explore how Steff went from grinding in the NYC music industry to teaching to starting non-profits.  Steff’s throughline is a total devotion of his life to social change, forward movement, hope and inspiration.

Like the title of the episode, there are some amazing nuggets of wisdom in here.  I walked away from my conversation with Steff Reed totally inspired, which makes sense, because he’s an educator and a social justice worker and has been working in the music industry for years, and these are all things I believe in.  

He shares why he pivoted away from the music industry, which he feels was a traumatic experience in some ways, to pursuing an independent music career more aligned with his own beliefs and values.

He also told me off-tape an important thing he learned producing music for the industry all these years: even if your track has heart, it’s gotta *slap* to hit the listener - a piece of advice I’m taking to heart as I work on my new album.  

Steff says he’s hopeful about the future - so I am, too.  Give it a listen.

 

Songs featured in episode:

"Get Free" and "Power of Love" by Steff Reed

 

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.

 

 

There comes a time in every musician's career when you ask yourself:  should you get a publicist?

In this episode of Music Therapy I talk with a real-life publicist, Colin Smith of Fresh Paint PR.  Colin breaks down exactly what a publicist does, how a publicist chooses to work with someone (or not), and what you can do to make a PR campaign successful.

We also discuss  the biggest question of all: what exactly does publicity accomplish for a musician?  The answer may surprise you!

Song featured: "The Waves" by Jessica Risker.  Interstitial music by David Yontz. 

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.

 

 

Group Session!  Chicago art-punkers Spread Joy define once and for all the grand purpose of art, ponder "derivative" music, explain the methods behind their songwriting and give a killer live performance on this episode of Music Therapy.  With special Exploration by the one and only Leslie Tanner!

This episode was taped live at Cafe Mustache on August 10, 2022.  

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.

In this episode of Music Therapy we talk with Duncan Sheik!  

You might remember Duncan Sheik's 1996 chart topping hit “Barely Breathing.” That song racked up 55 consecutive weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 and earned him a Grammy Award® nomination for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.

In the years since, Sheik has been celebrated for his work in musical theater, including the groundbreaking success of Spring Awakening, which won eight Tony Awards and a Grammy and is also the subject of the just released HBO Documentary - ‘Spring Awakening: Those You’ve Known.’ 

Duncan talks about his newest album "Claptrap",  Buddhism, going through a mid-life crisis, his experience working as a musical artist in New York City, and his personal definition of success, all on this week's episode of Music Therapy!

Songs featured in episode: "Barely Breathing", "There's No Telling", "Requiescat", and "Maybe" by Duncan Sheik. 

 

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

 

 

Annie Fish is a musician, cartoonist, and author based in Chicago, IL. In this episode of Music Therapy, I talk with Chicago musician Annie Fish about their new album “Weird Like Me”.  “Weird Like Me” is a full length 90’s inspired rock album accompanied by an oral illustrated history, found at anniefish.net/weird.html. 

Through the album’s concept, Annie explores her rock n roll dreams, considers what it would have been like to be a trans star in the MTV era, takes down the record industry, and comes to terms (mostly) with where she’s at. 

Songs featured in episode: "Weird Like Me" and "Cranium" by Annie Fish

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

 

In this episode of Music Therapy, Lizzie No and I dig into touring, protecting her mental health while on tour, how Lizzie knows she's spending too much time on social media, her definition of success, and lots more!

 

Songs featured in episode:  "Sweeter Than Strychnine" and "Stop Bothering Me" by Lizzie No

 

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.  Instrumental interstitial music by David Yontz. 

 

September 7, 2022

Episode 100: 100 Episodes!!!

This is our 100th episode!  Jessica and Josh reflect on what we've learned so far through our 100 interviews with artists.  Thank you guys for listening to the podcast - here's to 100 more!

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Songs included: "Disco Smile" and "Stay" by Jessica Risker/DEADBEAT

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.  Instrumental interstitial music "Hangin' With the Boys in the Enchanted Forest" and "The Summer Mort Became Interested" by David Yontz.  

 

 

Uma Bloo is a pool.

Uma Bloo is the persona of Molly Madden, a musician from Chicago who is maybe thinking about possibly moving to LA.  Molly worked on an album for years and released it and then left her band and is currently in total flux with music, where it lives in her life, her goals, and what it all means. 

This is a very vulnerable place for a musician to be and totally relatable, and Molly explores it all in this episode of Music Therapy. 

Songs featured in episode:  "To Be Vast" and "Don't Drive Into the Smoke" by Uma Bloo

 

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.  Instrumental interstitial music by David Yontz. 

 

How do you start over in a new city? 

Bridey Hicks (BRIDEY) is moving from Chicago to LA.  We discuss the reasons behind her move, her approach for joining the LA music community, why Chicagoans are the best people,  transitioning from comedy to music, her songwriting process, working solo vs with a band, and recordings vs live performance. 

She also debuts a brand-new single called "The Light" from her upcoming EP.

Songs featured in episode: "The Light" and "Decisions Make Me Sick In The Head" by BRIDEY

Visit musictherapypodcast.com for show notes, past episodes, and upcoming events!

Music Therapy Podcast Credits: 

Music Therapy is hosted by Jessica Risker, produced by Sullivan Davis of Local Universe, and engineered by Joshua Wentz in Chicago. 

Opening and closing music composed by Joshua Wentz.  Instrumental music by David Yontz. 

 

Load more

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App