Wet Stuff : The Art of Painting a Business

Being a Professional Musician with Jared Warren

User Rating: 5 / 5

Star ActiveStar ActiveStar ActiveStar ActiveStar Active
 

 In this episode of Wet Stuff, the up and coming Albuquerque musician, Jared Warren, shares what he's learned about how to make money as an artist. 

https://jaredwarren.bandcamp.com/releases


Transcription

Neeley, “Today I’m here with Jared Warren, Jared is a working musician, lyricist, composer, and guitarist. His current projects include ‘Jared Warren and Call it Quits’ a pop-punk band and ‘Lamplight, and Candle’ his solo album available on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play and Bandcamp. Here’s a taste of ‘Lamplight and Candle,’ by Jared Warren. Hi Jared, thank you so much for coming onto the Wet Stuff Podcast.”

Jared Warren, “No problem it’s my pleasure. Just enjoy being here.”

Neeley, “So I’ve known Jared now for what probably a year?"

Jared Warren,“Yeah about a year, a year and a couple of months. since I started working at the shop next door.”

Neeley, “I work in a gallery that’s next door to the Oasis Vapor Lounge and Jared works there, he’s a working musician. So I didn’t know this but for- how long have you had your music out?”

Jared Warren,“I’ve had different projects and things of that nature out for about two years now. But the most successful piece of music I’ve released is Lamplight and Candle which is my solo album it’s acoustic just singer-songwriter a little on the sadder side but yeah about two years I’d say.”

Neeley, “So all this time I’ve been joking around and talking with somebody who is more talented than I realized.”

Jared Warren,“Well, I don’t know about that. A lot of its hard work. I guess talent I think is a spark, and then hard work is what ignites that, but I appreciate that statement.

Neeley, “What I mean is I can’t believe it took me so long to know about your music it’s really beautiful. Lamplight and candle is a great song."

Jared Warren,“I appreciate that. The collection of songs that go into that piece is something that’s special to me as far as just the manifestation of things I’d felt through my young adult life; growing up into being a little bit older. I’m only 21, but all the feelings that I carried previously are very real on that album. Something that’s kind of cool and special to me.”

Neeley, “So you’re only 21, and as an independent musician you are already making a good portion of your income off your music.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah I would say so. It’s difficult getting people to pay you for your art or your trade or what have you, but the important part of it is carrying something that people want because whenever you’re trying to make money using your art, there’s a lot of give and take. You have to make sure that people want what you have to offer and are willing to pay you some monetary value for that."

Neeley, “Yeah and it’s tough as a musician these days because we’re so accustomed to getting the music for free.”

Jared Warren,“Right. Ever since the invention of Groove Shark or what was it Napster way back like when I was young and wasn’t even into music it made it hard for musicians, so you have to innovate to keep your art relevant."

Neeley, “So what got you started putting your music out there and starting to put your foot out in the world?”

Jared Warren,“Well I always really enjoyed music ever since I was young. I was in a lot of choirs because I was raised in a church. I did a lot of singing there. But the biggest push for me, as far as getting my music out there and getting people to listen to it is, I had a friend- when I was probably a Freshman in high school- who told me- We were really close, her name was Micah Dent, and she told me, 'You know you can do this without other people right?' And it never really occurred to me that I could truly decide to be great or be nothing on my own. It was that point in time where I realized that I need to take the songs that I write- because what I was doing at the time was I was in a band called On Your Doorstep which wasn’t very serious at the time because we were all so young. I would write songs for that band, and I would write songs that wouldn’t make the cut so to speak, and I would still really love the songs and I would just kind of forget about them. But it wasn’t until she told me you know you can do this on your own, right? That I decided as an individual, I could also sell my art or craft something that people found valuable.”

Neeley, “When did you make your first sale as a musician?

Jared Warren,“As a musician, I made my first sale in 2015. That same band, On Your Doorstep, of course, years later different members different vision and all that. We released a song called Lay Down and Die. It sounds edgier than it is. We released that song onto Bandcamp at the time. Never made it to iTunes or Spotify or anything like that, but it did get a VEVO on YouTube for the band. So we had On Your Doorstep VEVO, and we released a music video with it which was produced and filmed by Daniel Zollinger who did Lone Ranger, the Johnny Depp movie that he was in. He filmed all that he ended up filming our music video, and I ended up selling that to a lot of people in the scene of music that I was associated with who also found it valuable in some form or another."

Neeley, “Were you excited?”

Jared Warren, “I was super excited, honestly looking back I kind of put down the feelings and everything that went into that. I couldn’t say in my life I felt anything better than that. To take something from being an idea, just being a thought, to putting it to music and turning that into a recording which then, in turn, turns into a music video and selling that. There’s not a better feeling I could have in the world than that."

Neeley, “Nice. How complicated is it to be professional about what you do and still have the same kind of playful passion that’s required to have the creative inspiration to do what you do?”

Jared Warren,“The technical aspect isn’t hard at all when it comes down to knowing what you’re going to do. It’s the follow-through that’s the hard part because depending on where you’re playing and who you’re playing with you have to act a certain way whether you want to or not. You don’t act a certain way as in changing yourself or the art you’re presenting, however, you do just want to present yourself in a manner that is easy for people to enjoy. Most of the time that doesn’t mean you have to change the way you act or anything. Because I always recommend just being who you are. However, there’s a very different atmosphere between say playing a dive bar where everybody is already drinking and having that kind of time as opposed to playing in an art gallery like the one we’re in. It just varies, you know? You have to exercise self-control according to the environment to best market your product.”

Neeley, “You mean like if you’re playing in a bar you don’t drink?”

Jared Warren,“Oh no, I’ll drink yeah absolutely. I mean if you’re playing in a bar that’s the environment, so you’re going to drink because other people are drinking, if that’s your thing, you know? And it’s more of a social atmosphere and you can kind of ease into it that way. If I’m playing a show at like say your gallery for some benefit like, the benefit show, oh what time was it? Veteran’s Day. Yeah, November 11th. Like a Veteran’s Day show you know you want to make sure that you’re not acting how some people might consider scummy. You want to hold yourself above reproach or hold yourself to a standard where if someone does have something to say about you the general public or the rest of people that do know you are going to know it’s just not true.”

Neeley, “So it’s having attention to your behavior.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah, correct.”

Neeley, “Okay, so what we were referring to there was the Face-Palm Patriots event. It’s a fundraiser for Heroes Walk Among Us, and Jared Warren played for us. His songs, many of them, are just perfect for Veteran’s who have PTSD. They just hit home. And it was wonderful to have you perform for us that night, thank you for doing that.”

Jared Warren,“Oh yeah of course. I appreciated it. I enjoyed it, and I enjoyed getting to express the way I feel and have other people connect to that as well as having the conversation with the individuals who were here for the event and getting to connect with them on not just a musical here’s my product level but also a very personal one.

Neeley, “Yeah those songs, a lot of those songs give me goosebumps. It’s crazy that I get just to hear you play and practice whenever I come to open the gallery in the morning. Jared’s always practicing even when he’s at work. That’s another thing with you that I notice you are constantly working on your craft.”

Jared Warren,“You know I try. Because several people have told me through my life- not just people with no meaning to my life have said this, but people that have meant a lot to my life have said if this is what you love about your life you need to focus in on it. And as an artist, one of the most important things is to constantly be improving your craft. No matter what those means are if you have any free time. I train myself to think, why am I not getting better at playing guitar and singing? Which if you don’t truly enjoy what you’re doing, that can be problematic. It's important that when you’re making your art as far as music goes that you realize that you enjoy what you’re doing, so it’s not a job when you feel like every second you’re not practicing that is a second wasted.

Neeley, “So I think the majority of our listeners are visual artists, but a lot of the visual artists are also musicians. I don’t know how many of the visual artists will be interested in the more technical aspects of how you do what you do professionally but in this case, I don’t care. This podcast is going to be particularly geared for creatives who are independent musicians seeking to get their music out to the public and make some money doing what they do. So let’s talk about that. How did you get your music onto Bandcamp and iTunes and Spotify?”

Jared Warren,“You know a lot of it is honestly just the connections you make. I’d say the most important thing as far as the technical aspect of one’s music is if you don’t know how to do something find someone who does and find someone who does it very well. Craft a relationship with them to where if you can’t afford to do what you want-- Craft a relationship with the people who are good at said thing to where you know they’ll be willing to work with you as far as paying them goes, or to where they can teach you to do it yourself. Unfortunately in the digital age in which we live it’s very difficult to get yourself noticed because a lot of people are doing this. And even if people aren’t as good at it as you are, if they have better marketing, and they have better people doing their videos and their recordings, they’ll get noticed. It’s not fair, but it’s something you know you can’t be afraid- you can’t take a dollar amount and say that’s not doable. You got to figure out ways even if it’s not in a monetary way to get things done such as recording music videos etc. all that stuff."

Neeley, “So this goes hand in hand with what visual artists deal with too. It doesn’t matter how talented you are as an artist. The quality of your work is important. It’s everything. But everything on top of that is marketing and getting it out there and having a website and doing all of the extraneous social media broadcasting that you can to let people know that you exist."

Jared Warren,“Right absolutely. There came the point in my-- if you want to call it musical career so far-- where I realized you know, I’m not very good at this social media stuff. I’m not good at posting every day or getting people particularly interested, which isn’t’ a bad thing for an artist, whether they’re visual or musical or what have you. It’s just something you have to be real with yourself about; what you’re good at and what you’re not. Then find a way to supplement that. So, for example, I decided that I need someone who can market me. Someone who is good at getting people to follow a certain page whether it’s Facebook Twitter Instagram-- finding someone who is skilled at that and good at that and whose willing to do that for you for either-- it always comes down to money. It always does. If someone’s willing to do that for a price, or maybe you have a skill they don’t know that you can teach them. It’s all about investing time. Your art is all about investing time whether you realize it or not because there will be times where you’re doing something for your art that might be a subject entirely separate. Like let’s say you know how to grow a garden well, and someone’s interested in that, and they have the marketing skill like they’re good at getting people to check out content on different forms of social media. You know you could say, ‘I’m good at gardening so let me show you how to grow these plants even better and this or that and you can market some of my music.’ So a lot of it comes down to that. When you’re an artist every aspect of your life has to be creative if you have something that you want and you don’t know how to get there, or you don’t have the monetary means.”

Neeley, “So you have to utilize your creativity the same way when it comes to business.”

Jared Warren, “Oh absolutely it’s 100%, I would argue to say it’s 100% of your walk as an artist whether visual or music to create a valuable product not just in what you're selling but as yourself. You need to have things that you can trade for other valuable things.”

Neeley, “Wow I never thought about that before; how when you’re an artist, an independent creative person, how you yourself as a person as a human being-- Your time and your knowledge and what you do or what you’re capable of --how all of that is a product. It’s not just the product you create, it’s not just the artwork you create or not just the songs you create, but it’s what you can do and what you know."

Jared Warren,“Right, exactly. Because no matter how good your product, speaking in terms of the art you’re making whether visual or musical like some people will just not care for it, and they just never will. And if you can’t get them with the product you’re creating as far as the ideas that you’ve crafted into songs or images, paintings all that-- If you can’t get them with that, you have to touch them on a more personal level to where you know maybe they see what you’re doing a little differently."

Neeley, “Wow. Okay."

Jared Warren,“Or that’s what’s always worked for me. I could be entirely wrong too. But I don’t think I am because it’s worked out pretty well so far.”

Neeley, “What tips would you give to up and coming musicians. Stuff that you wish you would have known that you didn’t know that you learned the hard way?”

Jared Warren,“You know the first tip I would give is if you know you’re good at what you’re doing be confident in that. Don’t be proud. Don’t put other people down or anything like that. And it does sound generic but just be humble. As far as the personal side goes, because that’s a personality trait that people will notice, and it will make more people open to working with you. Because no one wants to work with someone who thinks that they have everything figured out, or who thinks that they can’t, in turn, add something to your art. It’s a big collective behind- at least musical art for me, I don’t know if I can say the same for visual art because I’m just not a visual artist.”

Neeley, “Yeah it’s different with visual art because we don’t- I mean there are visual artists who collaborate, collabs do happen. But most of the time, a visual artist is more like a god in their own world. They have absolute control over everything, and most artists hate giving that up, they don’t like doing commissions. There’s, I think the majority of visual artists despise doing commissions. I think that’s a common theme. Because they’re having to compromise that world, that give and take. You have to step back and be open to somebody else’s vision and use your skills to fulfill that vision. And a lot of artists don’t like doing that. They feel uncomfortable with it. It’s totally out of their zone. And it’s a skill in and of itself to have the ability, the capacity to be willing to work with others on that level.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah absolutely. Because on a music level it’s difficult just for the fact when you create something as an artist, and you care about it, it’s difficult to bend on the way that’s represented because it’ll always be your piece of art as far as your idea and the way you intended it. Nobody can take that away from you. But when you’re trying to get other people to hear it, and you might need help from others it might be represented a way that I wouldn’t say you didn’t intend, but it’ll be something you didn’t think of, and you have to be okay with that. Well, you don’t have to be. You can be okay with that and let things run their course, or you can take a different route, it’s up to you. But overall don’t be afraid to work with people. Because I spent a lot of time just doing my own thing making my music and people wanted to help me, and I didn’t accept it because I felt it was not an accurate representation of the art I was making. And then it comes down to working with the right people too."

Neeley, “Oh god, that’s a huge factor, finding the right people to work with. I recently talked to Loren Fletcher, a choreographer and he was talking about the importance of finding people that you have good vibrations with that you just have a good rapport with that you have, he said a cohesive symbiotic relationship with."

Jared Warren,“Right, because there are very talented artists that you’ll meet within your own domain like with me music. I’ve met talented artists that I would love to work with. But you know we’ve sat down, or I’ve hung out with them two or three times and realized it’s just not going to happen.”

Neeley, “What would make it not happen for you?”

Jared Warren,“So for me, when I’m making music with people-- The reason I make music with the rest of the boys in Call it Quits is because we have an understanding of what our goals are, and what we want from life not only as artists making this band, this collaboration but also as individuals. Some people are just going to see life differently than you do and that’ll sometimes make it hard to work with them. Like for example, I used to work with this one group of musicians, and I was about just creating what I create, and then everyone else creating what they create and making the best out of that. Whereas that group of musicians didn’t necessarily feel that way, they felt that they wanted to work with a very specific audience. And it’s different for everyone what’s a deal breaker, and that was just a deal breaker for me personally because I don’t like to limit myself as far as what I’m making I like to try to innovate."

Neeley, “Yeah visual artists run into the same thing when they’re like, 'Oh landscapes sell just paint landscapes. Become a landscape painter.' You get pigeonholed into a certain genre. And nobody wants that restraint when you’re a creative person that restraint just kind of snuffs out the creativity.”

Jared Warren,“Right and me as an artist I find that the keystone to artistry, I feel, is pushing the limits. That’s always something that I’ve felt as an artist is important just because you know ever since the invention of rock and roll you go back even far enough like Elvis and the Beatles. Times were different back then, and they were pushing the limits. You know they were pushing what was okay or comfortable, to see if people would like it. They kept pushing it."

Neeley, “Yeah it kind of drives me crazy when people talk about music because when I hear music, I don’t hear music as a genre. I don’t find myself any longer attracted to a particular genre of music at all. There are some songs I like that you could call it Country but even the Country people wouldn’t accept it as Country."

Jared Warren, “Right.

Neeley, “Who cares what genre it is? Why do we have to label it? Just listen to the song.”

Jared Warren,“Right. Right, and there are different people that have theories about music, and the interesting thing about music theory is, you have the music theory as far as composition is concerned. But something that interests me is music theory socially; how people interact with certain music. There’s not necessarily a degree or anything of that nature as far as I’m aware that teaches that because it’s something that’s so broad. And genres-- There are people who think of music as far as society is concerned and feel genre is there’s no such thing. And then there are also people that feel you have to have a genre because we can only relate it to what we’ve heard. But I’m definitely on board with you. I think as far as genres are concerned I still use them just so people will know what you’re talking about but music is fluid, so I don’t feel like you should always have to put a label on it. And no one’s going to agree with your label anyway. Like you said before, you’ll be like man I like this song because it feels Country to me it feels- and people will be like no way that’s not Country! They’ll have a different idea entirely. A lot of it is perception. I guess one of the other tips, to go back to that, is create a lifestyle for yourself. Create music that you want to live that lifestyle. Because after people hear something enough like you say, Oh I’m an Emo Folk Americana artist, which is what I label myself as, which those genres don’t really touch. Folk and Americana do, but Emo people are like you know when I say Emo to people past a certain generation they’re like okay well-"

Neeley, “What does that mean?”

Jared Warren,“Yeah. But they connect to the Folk and Americana. Market yourself and create an image for yourself that you feel is reflective of your music but also reflective of yourself you know, so it’s smooth."

Neeley, “So don’t be limited by the genres but go ahead and use them for the marketing advantages.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah absolutely don’t be limited. You know as much as I want to say oh be true to the music and don’t have any labels you know that’s cool, and that’s well and good, but you’re not betraying the heart of music to market yourself well.”

Neeley, “Pick some words and talk about it.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah.

Neeley, “Yeah, okay. I can see that. And there is something to be said when you figure out something that works, and it’s repeatable.”

Jared Warren,“Oh definitely. When you notice things starting to work, you will have two things happen to you. You will have people that are happy for you and support you, and you’ll have people that say you’re doing the wrong thing. And it’s important to separate people’s opinions from your art. Just look at it statistically. I remember going to shows and playing shows two-three years ago to where people were like. 'That was alright,' or it was this that and then people who were like, 'Oh that was amazing!' You know, and it’s important as an artist to forget the people who are putting you down or criticizing you. Not all criticism, because there is constructive criticism from people you respect that’s going to help you shape your music further. But when people put you down it’s just something you have to be used to because people will dislike your music just because let’s say you were wearing a blue shirt that day. Not specifically a blue shirt, but like they just don’t like the way you look, and that’s just the way it is."

Neeley, “And something that’s common is if they don’t like your music, or they don’t like your art, it’s like they don’t like you. And a lot of adolescent mindsets that do exist in people are like that. They’ll talk about artists as though they hate the person when they just don’t like the music."

Jared Warren,“Right, exactly.”

Neeley, “How do you get over that?”

Jared Warren,“You know I’m not sure you ever do. Because there are some shows I play where I just feel 100% comfortable I go in I play my songs I feel I sang every note clean I played every note right and I’m super happy with that and just because the environment I’m in I feel like I did poorly. It’s not necessarily something you ever get over it’s something that you have to test to see what crowds are responsive to what you’re playing.”

Neeley, “Okay. So surround yourself with the people who accept what you do.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah, and you know honestly one big thing I can say too on the opposite side is play shows where you’re the outlier or where you’re not the norm."

Neeley, “So you’re talking about doing the opposite now.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah. Exactly. There’s a balance to everything. I think that’s helpful even though that may not be 100% helpful for your selling your product it’s really good for you as an artist. Because you learn what people as a whole like. I used to play Death Corps. I used to play a lot of heavier stuff like heavy forms of metal. And then I’d go from playing that to now playing more Folk Emo Americana thing. You experience very different sorts of people. But even to this day, I’ll go back, and I’ll play shows with bands that are named wild things like Desecrated Humanity, which is a really good local metal band. And you’ll play with people like that, and people won’t be expecting the next band to be an acoustic guitar bass and drums. Yet because they’re at the show a good amount of them will pay you the respect at least of listening to your stuff, and you get to see how they respond to your music being from a different perception of what they’re going to be hearing that evening. And it helps you realize what people in general enjoy."

Neeley, “I hadn’t considered a genre, it just didn’t occur to me to make it about a genre when I was working with Sharif to put together the LIVE event that we have coming up on January 13th. And I think you’re the only Folk Americana Acoustic musician that we have playing the other guys are like Hip Hop and poetry, and they’re different.

Jared Warren,“And you know honestly I love that because as an artist there’s not a form of music I dislike. So I’ve listened to all sorts of music so it’s cool to meet new people who may have a certain perception of you because that’s just how people are they’re going to see you a certain way.

Neeley, “Yeah I find it exciting when genres mix.”

Jared Warren,“Oh yeah, absolutely it’s a great time. Because everyone gets to experience something, they may not have known they like. And then before the end of the night, they’re like, 'Wow! That was really something.' For example, playing with hip-hop artists or playing with metal artists. It’s cool too before the show, be talking to them about their band and talk to them about their influences, what they listen to and to be able to relate to that and be like oh yeah I like that band too. I’m most familiar with the metal scene. They’ll be like, 'Oh yeah that’s super heavy!' Because being heavy is a big deal; that’s the keystone of metal is being heavy. You know? So I’m like, 'Oh you know that band? They’re super heavy, super good!' And then when I get up and play, and do something that’s soft and sweet, maybe a little sad. Or throw in a cover by a band that’s respected by that particular scene, such as Nutshell by Alice in Chains, they end up liking it and becoming emotionally attached to your music because they equate it to you as a person."

Neeley, “Oh yeah, cool."

Jared Warren,“So it’s a cool experience.”

Neeley, “I guess that’s some of the importance that visual artists experience when we do shows and go support other artists at shows and be present for the shows that we participate in. Because it’s a chance to converse with your fellow creatives. In the world of fine arts, a lot of us are anti-social because we work in isolation most of the time. When I’m working on a painting, I’m usually alone in my studio. There’s nobody else around, and I’m focused on the work that I’m doing. I’m in the zone, and there’s no dialogue that takes place outside me and my work, and that’s a different place to be in when you are sharing your artwork because when you’re sharing your artwork what people experience is their own experience."

Jared Warren,“Right. They haven’t had anything to lead up to that.”

Neeley, “Yeah."

Jared Warren,“As an outside observer there’ve been times where I’ve come into the gallery, and you’re obviously in your zone doing your paintings, and I’m like, 'Oh no! I don’t want to disrupt this sacred process.' Because for me I’ve never been good at visual art, so it’s cool when someone’s doing their visual art or just making art alone in general because it’s different then what I’m used to.”

Neeley, “I’ve also developed the knowledge to know when I need to lock my studio door and put a do not disturb sign up on the door and just focus on my artwork because I know I'm going to be doing something that I can’t be interrupted. And when I’m working during business hours where the gallery is open my priority is to greet visitors and tell them about the show and tell them about other artists work. If nobody’s here I can be working but I’m gonna get interrupted, and I know that and I’m hoping for that, in fact.”

Jared Warren,“I think that’s one thing both visual and music artists need to keep in mind is that you have to have time for both. Because there are times where I'm like, 'Man! How come I hate everything I’m writing?' And I’ll realize I haven’t made any time for it to be just me writing, and give myself the time to just let out the way I’m feeling or the ideas I’ve had. It’s really important to know when to lock the door whether it’s physically or theoretically. It’s very important to know because it’s important to let your art remain yours but also let other people inspire that. Because as far as I’m concerned, music as a whole is a conglomerate of things people have been making for years.”

Neeley, “This might be a stupid question, I don’t know, but I’m going to ask it. I’m not a musician, but I hear music in my mind all the time, really great music. Sometimes I’ll hear a song in my head, and I’ll look for that song, and I just can’t find it, and I’ll realize it just doesn’t exist outside my head."

Jared Warren, “Right.”

Neeley, “But I can’t tell the difference. How do you tell the difference between a song that you get in you-- how do you know you’re not just remembering a song you’ve heard before? Because there are so many tunes out there, there’s so much music out there. How do you know that your influence is original?”

Jared Warren,“You know it’s difficult. And one of the things I remember most frequently is something you said. You told me that originality is cool, but if no one’s going to relate to it you could have something 100% original and if it’s 100% original no one’s going to relate to it because it’s only original to you. Everyone else, they won’t get anything from it, which is cool if that’s what you’re going for. There’s nothing wrong with that, but to go back to that base question if I’m not actively trying to rip anything off-- which nobody should be. It’s not always like that. I know I’ll be okay but there are times where I hear a song, and I’m like I like this about that song, and I’ll put it in something of my own, maybe not note for note but the general idea. And there’s nothing wrong with that because like I said earlier, music is a conglomerate of things we’ve created as the human race. We don’t have anything to relate music to other than other music. So, unless you’re actively trying to do something someone else has done, if it’s in your head and you play it there are so many different possibilities. Let’s say for example you’re playing the same exact notes that are in another song but it’s a different key, technically it’s not copying that at all because it’s technically in a different key. It can sound the same except lower or higher it’s a different key, so it’s not the exact notes at all what it is, is just those notes in a different tuning or a different key which a lot of people will do. It’s very popular in pop music to do that. There’s this big thing-- the song Under Pressure, you ever hear that? Well, I think it’s Vanilla Ice or something, Ice Ice Baby, same exact baseline. They ended up suing whoever did that song and lost the lawsuit because there was a two-note difference. That was very subtle. Which I don’t recommend trying to copy anyone that discreetly but if you have a song in your head I recommend just get out your feelings anyway because 80% of the time how you translate that song or the notes you’re hearing in your head-- however you translate that into your idea, 80% of the time, by the time it gets done it’s going to be something entirely different. Because there’s just so many different layers that go into writing a song.”

Neeley, “Yeah I guess we could talk about this for visual art as well. I think the guidelines for copyright laws is there need to be three quote-on-quote "significant changes" between images so if you’re basing your painting on a photograph you have to change something. You can’t just copy a photograph. But the original artwork itself, like the original piece itself maybe you can’t sell prints of it maybe you can’t-- I don’t know that anything would be so accurate that you couldn’t share it on social media, but the original work of art itself, the painting itself is its own creation. You can always sell the original. So you know I can’t sell prints of Bugs Bunny, but if I do a painting of Bugs Bunny, I can always sell the original.

Jared Warren,“Right, exactly. So it’s just people’s different touches or things they add on to music. For example like it’s popular in different forms of music to take what’s called a sample of someone else’s song and put your beat behind it or your rap or anything like that and as far as that community is concerned it’s not plagiarism at all because they have the view that music is universal.”

Neeley, “We should get a- I should talk to an Intellectual Property Lawyer on here that would be good. Because I might be talking out of my ass right now when I say I could paint Bugs Bunny and sell that. That actually might not be true."

Jared Warren, “Well if you take Bugs Bunny and give him a second tail you could-"

Neeley, “Well if I give him a mohawk and some piercings."

Jared Warren, “Right because then at that point it’s not Bugs Bunny.”

Neeley, “But see I don’t know if that’s true. You know, when they goth out the Disney princesses and sell that and I see that on Social Media are we just hoping Disney won’t care?”

Jared Warren, “As far as what I have learned from the people I’ve been involved with that’s your own intellectual property because it’s not what whoever created it intended at that point it’s not their creation anymore. Same as that two-note difference between rifts. Which don’t do that, it’s lazy. But you know."

Neeley, “Okay, is there anything else you can think of that you’d like to share with up and coming musicians?”

Jared Warren,“Oh man you know I thought before we had this whole process and you told me, Jared, yeah let’s go ahead and do that podcast. The recurring theme in my head was just the give and take behind the music. Like you’ll always have something to give, and you’ll always have something you want to take. But the most important thing is to have a valuable product whether it’s your music, you as a person, a skill you have to trade for what you want. Because with the music industry there’s nothing for free. It’s a different world now than it ever was for music. So you want to make sure that you have something that people find valuable in order to get what you want.”

Neeley, “How do you reach the point that you value your art?”

Jared Warren,“You know it’s a difficult question because there are gonna be times where you don’t value your art if you’re anything like me, you’ll be like oh I like this, but I don’t think anyone else does.”

Neeley, “Or you like it, and you know that other people like it, but you still don’t have a sense that you deserve money for it.”

Jared Warren, “The way I get over that is simply just telling myself that I do. And I know it sounds-"

Neeley, “Say the words.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah. I’m just like oh you know I could sell this. Because you’ll see music is all around now, and it’s easy to access and that’s why it’s more difficult now than ever as someone who makes music to make money off it is because it’s everywhere. You know you have people who are making cash off of covers and popular pop songs and stuff like that. Which there’s nothing wrong with that but those people had a skill. And I hope this answers the question we might need to refresh it, you have people who had the skill to give, and that was just singing well. They didn’t necessarily have the skills or the want or the need or whatever it is for whoever it is to make a song, but they did that song in a way that people were like, 'Oh hey I like that a lot because it’s not like the original, but it's a song I know.'"

Neeley, “Yeah there’s sometimes where you hear covers of popular songs, and it feels like hearing that song you loved, or maybe you didn’t like it before, but it feels like you’re hearing that song for the first time and the familiarity that you already have with it makes it more appealing."

Jared Warren,“Right and when you can do that when you can play a cover, and people are like you did that better than the original. That’s one thing that pushed me to ask, 'Well then why am I not selling my originals?'."

Neeley, “Yeah I get that too when people are like, 'I just want you to paint something for me just come up with something'. Which is like the dream commission, right? They’re telling me to create whatever I want, to give me absolute creative freedom but they’re not buying anything that I’ve already made, so there’s clearly something they want that’s different. But they don’t know what it is, or they don’t know how to articulate what it is, or maybe they just want something that’s original that’s never been seen before, and they want it to be related to them somehow just by making the request."

Jared Warren,“Right exactly. And that, in essence, goes back to the whenever your particular style can touch someone personally to where they want either a painting by you, and they don’t know what it is-- Because for me there have been pieces of art I want done, and I don’t entirely know what I want of it I just know that I want that particular artist’s style. At that point, you realize the style that you’ve created for yourself whether it’s by playing covers, originals, whatever. The style you’ve created for yourself at that point is something that people value so you should sell them what you have. Just play what you’ve been doing in the style you’ve created for yourself and they’ll surely be interested in it. And don’t let No’s-- I don’t like to think of things in terms of yes and no, I like to think of things in terms of yes and maybe later."

Neeley, “Okay.”

Jared Warren,“Just because someone saying no now but art is our entire lives for people who are artists. It’s not necessarily someone’s entire life who let’s say works at the restaurant across the street or works in an auto shop it’s not their entire life, so they’re not going to inherently value something just because it’s art you have to find something for them to value about it. Which is a challenge for sure. But you know it’s just about being creative, and you have to let your entire being be your art.”

Neeley, “Well thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us and share your insights today.”

Jared Warren,“Yeah, of course, it’s been great. I’ve had a great time just sitting here talking. It’s been fun.”

Neeley, “I think this will be a valuable conversation for a lot of people.”

Jared Warren,“I hope so.”

Sign Up