Writing Pro

If you think it’s a cop-out to just re-post favorite blogs for the first twelve days of April, I beg your patience.  It’s giving new readers a chance to catch up.  It’s giving me a great opportunity to reflect on Gigspots’ progress and my writing as a whole.  Let me act proud while humbly thanking the bands, venues and personalities who have allowed me to write about them.  I’m learning and I love learning!

Besides my own blog, I’ve found some opportunities to write professionally since I started Gigspots.  I’m especially proud of a follow-up piece on Lancaster Roots and Blues I wrote for the March edition of Regional Musician magazine.  I like their motto: “Right-brain info for the left-brain artists.”  Once a teacher, always a teacher I guess.  Here’s this link to “The Road to Roots and Blues.”

I contribute fairly regularly to FigLancaster.com and find it exhilarating to be part of such a beautiful publication.  It gives me a great excuse to gush about Lancaster’s music scene.  Here’s a sample: follow this link to see my December post.  I have to say I was pretty thrilled to be a contributor to Fig Lancaster’s first Music Issue and be in print.  I got “…five copies for my mother.”

The folks at TriStateIndie.com have become mentors and trusted friends since I started Gigspots.  Contributing for them is fun and gives me a chance to do some different types of writing.  It was really cool when they published my album review for SEEDS’ Questioned By a Ghost.  I’m not sure if it’s related, but I receive music to review and invitations to shows regularly now.  I also write liner notes and bios for bands.

I wrote a ton for Lancaster Roots and Blues: press releases, sales pitches, website content, program notes, you name it.  I’ll be doing it again for 2015 so please give me some feedback if you’re in that audience.  It’s a primary way that I can work to assure your experience is the best it can be.


Twelve Nights of Gigspotting

I celebrate Gigspots’ anniversary the way my mom used to celebrate my birthdays.  She was a nut.  I’d wake up and construction paper numbers would be all over the house.  She put candles on my toast.  I guess I’m sentimental like her.

I’ve been rereading all my old blogs.  I’m proud to say my philosophies haven’t changed. Music and culture define us as humans.  Young people flourish when given positive opportunities.  Give peace a chance and hippies may actually save the world.

The lively central PA music scene gave me the guts to form Gigspots.  The scene has thrived and grown to include The Ware Center, Tellus 360, Music Fridays, The Convention Center, Lancaster Roots and Blues Festival and at least a dozen small businesses where music events happen.  Lancaster has witnessed the birth of The Stray Birds, The Districts, The Wayfarer Experiment, Brethren, The Pig Merchants, SEEDS, Silver City Rodeo, Shrimpboat and Jake Lewis and The Clergy over the last three years.  That’s more great bands than some cities raise in a decade.

Has Gigspots’ footprint increased in three years?  Have I helped some bands and venues? Do fans turn to Gigspots for music and entertainment news?  I hope so.  I sure have learned a lot.  Looking at my old blogs makes me feel naive and insightful at the same time.

I know my audience has grown rapidly since Twitter and Lancaster Roots and Blues came into my life.  So I’m taking the first twelve nights of April to post some flashback blogs: highs, lows and in-betweens.  Here’s the text of my first ever from March 19, 2012.

The Great Irony of Gigspots

Greetings and Welcome to Gigspots!  My name is Sam Campbell and I will be your host.  Gigspots.com is a website designed to be a clearinghouse for bands and live music venues.  Fans of live music can go there to see a concert calendar, pictures and profiles of bands/venues and videos of bands performing live.  From Pittsburgh to Philly, from the Poconos to the Potomac, we want to be the site you check to find great live music in your town or on your travels.  Gigspots.com was born April 18, 2011.

This blog will give me a chance to sound off about our region’s great music scene.  As I visit cities and towns seeking great music, I will share the cultural treasures I discover.  Art, architecture, dining, history and outdoor adventures are some of my interests besides music.   I hope you find my writing lively and entertaining.  I hope you give me some feedback and guidance.  Share your experiences and expertise!

Here’s the great irony of Gigspots. I am using the internet and social networking sites to say, “Step away from your computer!”  Social networking is not socializing. To “Like” a band or music venue is not the same as experiencing them.  They are as different as having a picture of a dog and having a dog.

You know how your dog is always glad to greet you, whether you went to the mailbox or Miami?  Become a regular at your local spot or at a band’s area appearances and you will get the same type of greeting, minus the shedding and slobbering (typically: your results may vary).

The next few blogs will highlight some of my best experiences from year one at the helm of Gigspots.com and preview the big events to come.  Please join in with recollections and invitations!