Sue's songs, her story, upcoming releases and performances.
Author: Sue Larsen
I am a singer/songwriter who has been performing my own material and cover songs for 40+ years. I am currently working on the production of my first album...getting all ready for distribution. Be well.
This is primarily for my fellow musicians. ASCAP has spearheaded this effort. It has resources for COVID-19, financial assistance and links for helping you deescalate from the potentially unnerving reality that we all are experiencing. All the best to all.
We are all experiencing something. Whether your job is making adjustments, you have tickets for something that has been postponed or cancelled, you wanted to attend your child’s sporting event and now there are no spectators allowed, your financial portfolio is taking a hit everyday, you have elderly relatives, you have a frail or medically fragile family member, you work in the medical profession and your stress levels are soaring (thank you for the work you do), your children’s school is closed temporarily and now you need childcare or can’t work, maybe you just want to go to a store to stock up on supplies and they are out of what you need or you need to go into the supermarket for groceries and are afraid because of your age or health. I could keep going…
For myself, there are a few items above that pertain to me and my life. What I am experiencing may be next to nothing compared to others. All of my performances that are in therapeutic milieus for seniors and the disabled have been cancelled until further notice. Right now that is the bulk of my work. But, I count my blessings because I could be a restaurant owner and almost everyone in the service sector is being crippled.
Do we succumb to the fear that is around us or do we choose to be compassionate for those who are ill and are at the greatest risk? Are we doing our best to ground ourselves and others? That is our choice.
I have listened to various news stations and I am amused by the “blame game” going on between countries, and political leaders. Also, within our own government and within departments. Yes, there are flaws in our systems and inadequacies.
Please be mindful that in this global society that we are, what affects one group affects all. This is not a China thing, an Iranian thing, an Italian thing, or South Korean thing….this is a human thing. The faster we all put our “gloves down” the faster we can collaborate and slow this virus down. We have seen the effects of this “global oneness” in our financial markets, trade markets, with natural disasters, and once in a while it occurs like it is now unfolding. Fear will not keep us healthy…being smart and aware of our surroundings, our own hygiene and our loved ones will go a long way. Some of us will get sick, some will die, and some will experience nothing. That is the fabric of life. Be vigilant and well. Everything is temporary.
For the last two weeks I have been recording “Sleeping Alone Again”. I thought I was finished last week, but, this past week I re-recorded the lead vocal, added another harmony part, and added a guitar part. I find it is helpful to “step away” from what you are creating and take a few days to rest your ears from hearing the same song and existing parts in order to have a fresh perspective. This isn’t a race for me and I have no deadline so, I’ll let this process and the next of mixing and mastering take the time it needs.
For social media purposes, it occurred to me I should take a few photos or videos of what I am doing. Awhile back I had purchased a macro and wide angle lens kit for my iPhone 6. It is made by Xenvo and comes with a LED light, lens cloth and case. I also bought a tripod mount made by Kobratech for the iPhone and that came with a remote shutter that works with Bluetooth. Thank goodness, because, being by myself with no photographer in sight, I needed that stuff! The things you have to think about well beyond the music stuff…
I’m very excited…the song I recorded is certainly not my “first” song written. It is a song I wrote back in 1990! Ouch…that’s old. It’s titled “Sleeping Alone Again”. So, all the parts are recorded but, I am going to attempt to edit the tracks in Logic Pro. So, for the next couple of days I’m going to immerse myself in all I need to know in Logic Pro to get it done. Then I will be mastering it in DSP Quattro Pro. That software allows me to put in the finishing touches and proper meta data. Meta data is the IRSC code and all the credits. Different digital platforms sometimes prefer different bit rates and formats. CD quality is at 16 bits and with a sample rate of 44.1k. This software will allow me to make adjustments as needed. I don’t want to get too technical here. Reality is…I’m one third done. In the meantime I will be plotting out a storyboard for the video. Game plan is to upload the video to my YouTube channel the same day the song is released. I will keep you updated. Thanks and be well!
This is not the fun part of operating or owning a business whether you have a sole proprietorship, an LLC, a partnership or a S-Corp or C-Corp. There are tons of web pages out there to guide you and confuse you. For me I have myself out there earning money and the LLC and they are treated as separate entities. I do use a professional preparer because of tax law changes and making sure that proper deductions are being taken and all forms are filled out correctly. Also, in case there is an audit, my preparer will go with me or for me. The expense of using a professional is deductible so, I ere on the side of caution. For example, you are no longer able to deduct entertainment expenses, like theater tickets, but you can still deduct up to 50% of a meal and beverages if you take a client out or prospective agent, manager, or collaborator. As long as it isn’t excessively expensive. Here is a link that takes you to the highlights of IRS tax reform changes that affect businesses. Being self employed, no matter what business you are in, means keeping very good records and receipts. What comes in and what goes out. You will need to prove the cost of that new guitar or keyboard, the cost of office supplies, cell phone service, advertising, computer software, membership dues etc. For some great information about being self employed, here is a link to the IRS Self Employed Individual Tax Center. This isn’t entertaining to read but, if you don’t want a costly mistake down the road, it helps to know as much as you can. Ignorance is not rewarded or an acceptable excuse. Good luck!