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One thing to do if you plan on making it in Portland music


One thing I really enjoy is talking to bands about their thoughts on the Portland music scene.

In my previous post, I discussed some insights I have on why Portland has a unique music scene and why so many bands call Portland home. But what sets apart bands from being just another band in Portland and a Portland band? Bud from the Portland-based band, Aan, said something that stuck with me when we were at their seven-inch debut show in February.

You have to leave Portland to make it in Portland. Leave Oregon. Go on a tour. Show the Northwest, West Coast or the entire country that you have talent. Make a statement: you are to be taken seriously in your endeavors as musicians. It doesn’t matter if you have a great fan base in the city. Earn their respect by leaving.

Otherwise, you’ll just be another band in Portland. Which is okay if you don’t plan on making music a career, or at least a way to supplement your income. The Internet will only take you so far. The best way to make yourself known is to play in front of people. That is what you do, yes?

Take a look at couple successful bands in Portland, like Blue Ember and Crown Point. Both bands have a strong online presence. Blue Ember recently had a more than successful Kickstarter campaign. Crown Point packs venues in Portland, has put out two EPs and will release a fresh EP this summer. Neither band gets old. Blue Ember hits the road at every opportunity, even if it’s a short trip to California, and they plan on a longer tour when their new album drops. Crown Point has traveled the country and the guys have even played outside the states.

Every time you perform in a new place, you grow your network and meet new people, and if you work on your online presence, social media will take its course. You don’t have to go to big cities or play in massive venues –anywhere you show your face will only benefit you.

Musically, you might learn something new. Performing in different environments, out of your comfort zone, may help you grow as a musician. Kory Quinn wrote an entire album traveling the country.

A West Coast tour might sound frightening to those who haven’t left the area. So start smaller. Go up I-5 and visit our neighbor to the north.

About the Author

I Get Things Done. Let's grow your business together!
I Get Things Done. Let's grow your business together!