What’s important about your music?

by Dave Carew

Last month I had the honor of leading a workshop for singer-songwriters at the first-ever Liahonaroo festival.  The title of my workshop was “5 Tips for Getting Publicity,” and an important facet of what I taught was how to work most effectively with the media.

One of the crucial things I taught was how vital it is for musicians to be able to talk clearly and intelligently about their music. I asked the singer-songwriters and band members to take some “down time” and truly reflect on these three questions:

*  What is your music all about?

*  What’s unique about it?

*  Why do you believe people should care about it?

Anyone who can answer those three questions—clearly, concisely, intelligently, and without arrogance—will have a decided advantage in cultivating positive relations and communications with the media . . . and, by extension, with current and prospective fans.

Here’s how David Ditrich—a gifted, up-and-coming Christian pop artist who attended my workshop—answered those three questions:

UNDERGROUND NASHVILLE: What is your music all about?

DAVID DITRICH:  I want my music to be a positive message and to be full of hope. Everyone has a story—and a past full of hurt and pain—but no matter what you have gone through, or might be going through, there is hope that your situation can change and things can get better. I want my listeners to be encouraged and reminded that hope is never lost or gone, only forgotten. It’s been here the whole time, so hold onto it and don’t let go!

UN: What’s unique about your music?

DD:  I feel what makes it unique is that, while having a positive message, it still remains kind of edgy. For example, if I start a song off kind of dark, by the end of it I want to resolve it with a message of hope.

UN: Why do you believe people should care about your music?

DD:  A couple of reasons: First, I think people are wanting more than what they are [currently] hearing. There are too many songs in the world that leave people feeling angry, sad, or depressed. And there are far too many songs about things that do not really even matter, like money, sex, and drugs.  I believe my music—even with it being edgy—still can keep my purpose of encouraging and speaking a message of hope, which people can connect with in a real way.

A review of David Ditrich’s (very fine) album’ Hope’ will appear soon in Underground Nashville. In the interim, visit FaceBook.com/DavidDitrichMusic.

David M. (Dave) Carew is writer/editor of “Underground Nashville” and the author of the novels “Everything Means Nothing to Me: A Novel of Underground Nashville” and “Voice from the Gutter.” He also is a freelance book editor, publicist, seminar and workshop leader, journalist, and advertising/marketing/public relations writer.

Do you want to help homeless people in Nashville learn culinary arts and other employment skills that provide a specific, effective path off the streets? Please visit Lambscroft.org.  Please also consider coming to ParkLife, the benefit concert for Lambscroft, to be held in Sevier Park in 12South on a Saturday in August or September (date TBA soon). Thank you.


Editor’s Note: “Underground Nashville” covers artists, authors, musicians, poets, political figures, and other compelling people and happenings not typically covered by the mainstream Nashville media. It also presents reflections and commentary from an underground/indie perspective, offering “thoughts from the shadows of a great American city.”


Dave Carew




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