New Song: “Law of Attraction”

I am working on a new album of songs. I am taking it back to the old school Minneapolis Sound. Feel Good, Pop, Dance, Funk. I am working on quite a few songs right now. I wanted to share a new one I just sang and mixed today. It is called, “Law of Attraction” Check it out:


“Law of Attraction” written and produced by Chad Shank. ©2013 Chad Shank, Rowley Street Music, BMI

“Sweet Corn” a Song I Co-wrote is Released!

A song that I co-wrote with Luc Doppler called, “Sweet Corn” has been released on his CD! The project was recorded in Nashville. Luc is a talented country singer-songwriter. He and I worked together on a few songs and ‘Sweet Corn’ was the first one we did, and it made the record! You can preview and purchase ‘Sweet Corn’ and the entire disc on iTunes. You can also order the CD at http://www.lucdoppler.com/LucDoppler/Home.html

Click here to download on iTunes

New Song: Adam Carmichael – ‘Heaven Knows’

A friend of mine that I have written some songs with has released his first debut CD. He also just released a video for his single, “Heaven Knows.”  Adam wrote this song after he and I spent a few hours going over songwriting and tips and tricks. He went home and used some of the things I showed him and came up with this great song. Adam used songwriting craft along with personal feelings and experiences to really write something special.

 

I’m Becoming a Performing Songwriter….Again

So it is official. I am becoming a performing songwriter, again. I write a lot of songs, but I rarely perform my songs live….let alone accompany myself while doing it. But a little challenge never hurts anyone. I have an opportunity to perform 5 to 6 of my songs on a cable access show that is produced by the Minnesota Association of Songwriters. I have not performed live for a few years. So. I am excited and nervous at the same time.

Most people would dig out songs they already have and perform those…..not me. Nope. I have decided I want to write 6 brand new songs that I can perform live, and have it taped for broadcast. Yes, a challenge considering that the taping is on September 18. Today is July 28, so I have to much over a month to write 6 new songs, practice them, and rock them out in front of a camera.

I am going to use my keyboard, and I may make some tracks to play along with, so I have a rhythm section. Since I am a producer, I think of songs in full arrangements, so just vocals and keys is not my first choice….but that may also be a fun challenge. I am also going to record the songs I write and release them as an EP.

I picture this EP and these songs to be like Rascal Flatts meets Michael Jackson meets Gavin DeGraw meets funk and dance. Hybrid music of my influences and different than anyone else that is going to be on the same show. I will try to chronicle my progress and songs on this blog. I want these new songs to be original lyrically, and have catchy grooves and great melodies. I want these songs to help me grow as a writer. I will post video and let you know when my performance is going to air.

Chad

Musician Launcher – Helpful Music Resource Video

Ryan at MusicianLauncher.com has compiled some online songwriting and music related resources into a cool video. I am featured in the video, but so are some other great sites and people that can help you improve your songwriting and playing! Check out the video and Ryan’s site! ~ Chad

http://www.musicianlauncher.com/2012/06/making-music-great-resources.html

Incredible Youtube Music Story – Tyler Ward

Today I stumbled upon an artist that is using the internet and YouTube to do what so many people talk about doing…..making a living and finding fans. Tyler Ward has used the net to get his music out and find tons of fans….and fans turn into money. I always find stuff like this inspiring, so I hope you do to!

 

Interesting Movie: Press Pause Play

This week I was at home with a cold and I was browsing movies on Hulu Plus. I have a Roku box and like to watch online TV and movies through Hulu and Netflix. I stumbled upon this movie called, “Press Pause Play.”  It is a very cool documentary about how technology is shaping art. It includes film, songwriting, music production, visual arts, etc. It is an interesting jump into the worlds of creativity, commerce and technology. If you have a chance, check out the movie. Here is a trailer….

~~ Chad

Thoughts On Chasing Music Trends – 5 Things You Can Do

Have you ever had someone say, “Your song is not what is happening in music right now?” Or maybe they say that you don’t sound ‘current’ enough.  Then you go and turn on the radio and every song sounds like it was produced in the 80′s with a sprinkle of autotune. WTF? Right? I have had all of this happen, and I have let it get to me more than a few times. I know, I shouldn’t but I have. Seems like the ‘industry’ wants something different, but they want everything to sound the same. What they actually mean is….’we want what sells.’

So I have been thinking about this….and here is what I think about chasing musical trends:

1. I think you do need to be able to sound ‘just’ like what is hot right now. – - This gives you street cred and shows that you can play the game the way it is right now. Does this mean always doing it? Nope.

2. If you can’t play the game right now, how can you change the rules? - Learn what is fresh. Study the crap out of it. Then break the rules.

3. When you hear things on the radio and think, “I thought of that before” or “I wrote a song like that” That means you are on that cutting edge of what is going on. You are super close to breaking through. keep going! Write, Write, Write!

4. Once you get super comfortable with making ‘now’ sounding stuff….start pushing the envelope and developing from it. Put your own twist on it, or try to make it evolve into what you think is coming next.

5. No one has the exact same style as you….So play up what you do great, and work on improving the things you do OK. Celebrate your uniqueness, by mixing your influences.

6. (bonus) – Pick one song that you really dig that is hot right now, and listen to it at least 11 times in a row. Then listen to it any chance you can for a full day. Listen to it, so it almost becomes etched in your head. Listen to it as many times as you would listen to your own song you are working on. — My personal feeling is that this rewires your brain cells in a way that somewhere deep in the abyss of your thoughts, the song structures, melodies, lyrics, etc get stored and can add that ‘hit’ sound to your original stuff.

Trends are always going to change. Sometimes your style will be in, then in a month it will be out. I think the key is to be you, but to still be aware of what is happening. Learn how to do what is ‘in’ but make it your own.

Let me know how you feel about chasing trends…

~~ Chad

New Music Discovery: Steve Moakler

I was listening to Pandora this weekend, and a song I had never heard came up. It was by a poppy country artist called Steve Moakler. The song is called, “This Ain’t Rock and Roll.” It is a well written song, and I can relate to it. It is a song about being from ‘the north’ but appreciating ‘the south’ and country music.

I am from South Dakota and I grew up listening to Top 40 radio and some counrty. As I have gotten older and gotten more into songwriting and lyrics, my taste has skewed towards poppy country. I am even working on a pop-country album of my solo stuff right now. So I think that is why Steve’s song, “This Ain’t Rock and Roll” hit with me. It was almost like taking words right out of my mouth!

So I thought I would share my music discovery with you…

New Song: ‘Summertime Lover’

I wrote and cut a new song this past weekend. It is a fun -pop-country type track called, ‘Summertime Lover.’

LISTEN HERE

Summertime Lover
by Chad Shank

The sun
It burns my forehead
I take my shirt off
And hang it on the barbwire fence
I swig some Coca Cola
And set it on the fence post
You’re down on that blanket
I wanna get real close

I come down so we can snuggle
Kinda teasin’, kinda playful
We stare into each others eyes
We kiss, We sweat
Under a hot blue sky

Chorus:
You’re my Summertime Lover
You’re my Summertime Lover
You’re my Summertime Lover
You’re my Summertime Lover

Right on
Since this is the country
Ain’t no one gonna see us
There’s something I must confess
Baby you’re really smokin
We got too many clothes on
We’re not to far from water
We can get our splash on

You and me in the midst of nature
Little action, perspiration
We got the temperature on the rise
When we kiss, when we sweat
Under a hot blue sky

CHORUS

Bridge:
We got the birds and the bees
And the shack and the trees
And the bugs and the creek
And our barefeet
We got your and me and the summer heat
Uh Oh, Uh Oh
We got the birds and the bees
And the shack and the trees
And the bugs and the creek
And our barefeet
We got your and me and the summer heat
Uh Oh, Uh Oh

CHORUS

©2012 Chad Shank, Rowley Street Music, BMI