You Don’t Have to Start a TikTok

Oh, no. You’re missing out if you’re not on TikTok.

“TikTok’s average monthly time spent per user grew faster than nearly every other app analyzed, including 70% in the US and 80% in the UK – surpassing Facebook. TikTok is on track to hit 1.2 billion active users in 2021.”

Social Media Today

Every social media network has an audience, just like every television channel has an audience. And you don’t have to be on the History Channel to be relevant.

You don’t have to be everywhere.

Have you mastered Twitter and Facebook and Instagram? Probably not.

If you have 58 followers on Twitter, those are your 58 people. Cherish them.
Only got 100 followers on Instagram? Would you be okay with 100 people at a show on a Tuesday night?

Work with what’s in front of you.

If the thought of starting from zero followers and learning a new social media network fills you with dread, don’t do it. It’s your art, your music, your career. You make the rules.

Have focus, have a plan. Schedule some social media posts (use Buffer), start an email list (use Mailchimp), and work on your art.

Daily Loop #33

Ever have one of those nights where you’re just like, shit, there is so much music I haven’t listened to yet?

So how’d I get to watching an interview with DJ Muggs? Well, as I’ve been getting back into actually making some music again, I’ve been going back to some of the music in the mid 90s that formed my musical taste today. That includes Cypress Hill’s ‘Black Sunday,’ of course, so I had to dig a bit!

And if you watch the video above, he talks about Led Zeppelin, and Kraftwerk, like… fuck, I’m a “rock guy” and I still haven’t submersed myself into any of their records. Which is why I stay up too late on Monday nights, wondering if I could just make a pot of coffee and listen to music until the sun comes up. I mean, I won’t, but at least my frenzied brain will take 45 minutes to slow the fuck down to fall asleep.

LIKES

“Strictly only ever want to be having a good time from here on out,” and “don’t be in a toxic relationship with urself,” @chipzel

“I don’t want a future where only people good at the internet get to make music,” @kazzmlaidlaw

via @BreenySchlacter
Via Killer Acid

Video by Ruvim Miksanskiy from Pexels

Embrace Whimsical Links

This from a recent Twitter exchange, in response to the wonderful “Algorithm is Gonna’ Get You” article, written by Danielle Evans.

“Been thinking of dropping off IG for awhile. I gotta build up my own art sites and creator spaces. Just wish there was a positive online pool of people that congregate outside of algorithms and ads. That fosters connection and drives people to my art and projects. Maybe ello?”

@shootbydaylight

I just feel like leaving everything up to that “community pool” is a rough these days. It’s too centralized. Remember DIGG? StumbleUpon? Is the answer sites like Dribble, or Vimeo, or Flickr?

My dream is we get back to our websites, and letting the whimsy and awe of links do their thing. That happened for me recently with one of my daily loops. I noticed one video got a few more plays than the others, and discovered it was linked from another website – neato!

There was a time when we didn’t drink from the “content firehose” for hours everyday, bombarding our eyeballs with fear and dread mixed in with “oooh, a pretty picture of a sunset!” I think for our own health and sanity we need to back away from cramming everything into one site, one network, one silo.

Don’t Let Your Likes Disappear

Photo: Lyndsey Hansen Sunderland from Twitter

Each day on social media a 400 page magazine shows up on your doorstep, bursting at the seams.

And everyday, the previous day of wonder and delight has begun its walk into obscurity.

David Sark from Twitter

This is why I added the LIKES section to my Daily Loops videos. I know from doing the “blog thing” over several years that there are times when I’ll go back through my archive and find something I forgot about.

In that moment in the past something grabbed me, it was enough for me to hold onto it, to put it on this site, my little corner of the internet. Even if I don’t have hoards of readers, I have me, and I want to re-live and re-experience some of that magic.

Crocodile Jackson from Instagram

So my LIKES section is a collection of things that catch my eye, or my ear. For a bit I was embedding the Tweets or Instagram posts, but I fear that one day they could disappear.

And to think some people aren’t even on Twitter or Instagram, and they can’t see that magic, those bright colors, the rich hues of music and noise.

So now I’m adding those things to my site, adding a link to the source (of course), and looking forward to 2025 when I can come back here and see the magic that got me through the pandemic, this moment in time that people will talk about 100 years from now.

Delight Your Current Fans

The fantastic Andy J Pizza gives some solid, practical advice in this podcast, talking all about using social media for your benefit while being mindful of the cost.

One of the biggest take-aways – stop focusing on new followers and instead put effort into engagement. People who follow you are the fans at your show, the friends at your gallery show, the people who bought a print.

Keep putting out killer work so you’re top of mind for the people who already raised their hand and said, “I want more of this.”

Revue Joins Twitter

I played around with Revue back in late 2019 for Metal Bandcamp Gift Club, but moved to Mailchimp because I needed to control more of the sign up process. Fair enough.

Then today Revue announces they’ve joined Twitter, which is an interesting move, and I think plays into what I’ve been talking about for awhile: use social media to build your email list.

Social media can be great for the quick, off-the-cuff conversations, and lots of good can come from those conversations! But having an outlet for longer form thoughts, fleshed out ideas – email is a great medium for that. And no doubt Twitter is going to make it easy to build your list with this integration.

And if you’re still wondering what you’d even put into your own email newsletter, please read ‘What Would I Even Put in an Email Newsletter,’ which I wrote back in 2018.

Daily Loop #23

It’s the weekend, so I thought I’d try shooting one of those play through videos for a loop today. Sometimes I forget to add a real bass line, as I’ve been playing since 1991 (though haven’t kept up in the last decade).

Shot the video with my iPhone XR on a tripod, then Airdropped them to my computer. From there, pulled everything into ScreenFlow, lined everything up, adjusted some of the video controls (brightness, contrast), and that’s it.

LIKES:

“I often think abt how much we repress during this pandemic in order to wake up, go to work. To be forced to live our lives while 100’s of thousands die in the background. & I think abt how once ends & we can finally process, the scale of national trauma we’ll be reckoning with,” @catcontentonly

No One Asked

Loved this bit from the Extra Paint podcast with Meg Lewis, at about the 16:30 mark; about making stuff that no one asked you to create.

Not hired. No committee. No poll. Just making something because you want to see it in the world.

I started Skull Toaster in 2011 (oh my god, TEN years ago) because I wanted to put something on Twitter that didn’t send you off to read something elsewhere. I wanted to put the meat right where you were; on Twitter. No one asked.

No one asked me to start ‘Goodnight, Metal Friend,’ but I wanted to hear dark ambient and drone metal songs with NO DRUMS, because dammit I wanted to fall asleep to it! So I made it, and now I’ve made 12 mixes and a few fans! NEATO.

If want to stream, stream your thing. Write your thing. Post your videos. The world needs to see your own unique, different, oddball stuff because some people like unique, different, oddball stuff! Right now it’s just hard to get any traction because of all the algorithms and noise on social media. But do your thing, put it on your own website and promote it.

No one asked, and that’s fine.

Photo by Vlad Fonsark from Pexels

Daily Loop #18

Today I beat Instagram. Today, on MLK Jr. Day. I scrolled once, twice, and knew the comfort that it brings. I could just crawl back into bed, pull the covers up, and swipe, swipe, swipe.

But I cracked open Abelton Live, plugged in my gear, re-arranged some stuff, and got to it. Maybe saying “got to work” is a bit much, but maybe that’s true, as well.

If you write, you’re a writer.

A friend told me recently she met Victor Wooten, the amazing, other-worldly bassist. She mentioned that she was taking lessons from someone he knew, so he exclaimed, “oh, so you’re a bassist,” to which she replied, “well, umm.. I mean…”

She told me he squared up, looked her in the eyes, and said, “you’re a bassist.”

LIKES

“To our LGBTQIA fans and fellow musicians: we love you. Thank you for being who you are. Metal (and the rest of the world) is stronger because of your voices and power. We are grateful for y’all.” @khemmisdoom