Thursday, December 16, 2010

Celtic harp, Modern Pop and Anne Roos

So what do Celtic harp, airlines, and modern pop music have in common? Anne Roos!

Anne’s career spans nearly three decades with a repertoire covering traditional Celtic, English, folk, Broadway, rock, jazz and contemporary music. She’s performed and appeared all over the world from the Tahoe Tonight show to the Lord Mayors mansion in Dublin, Ireland, while still finding time to serve as a teacher, mentor and consultant to other burgeoning artists. Anne is literally everywhere — in fact, if you’ve flown on United Airlines lately, you probably heard her on their in-flight music service. Here’s a bit more about our favorite Celtic harpist:

Spotlight on Anne Roos

  • Website:
  • Hometown: Presently residing in South Lake Tahoe, CA, but grew up in Southern California in Studio City
  • Influences: “My biggest influence is Alan Stivell. He is a Celtic harpist from Brittany, and I first saw him perform at McCabe’s Guitar Shop in Santa Monica in the ’80s, just after I had begun taking harp lessons. I remember sitting in the second row trying to make sense of his hand technique. His performance was simply magical, and he is credited as one of the first musicians to help popularize the Celtic harp in the U.S. He continues to perform, and his most recent CDs contain cutting edge world music.”
  • Cover song licensed: Led Zeppelin “Stairway to Heaven”
  • Story behind the cover: “There’s always someone who requests me to play “Stairway to Heaven” and then retract their request saying, “I’m just kidding. I know you can’t play that.” So, I decided to call their bluff. Now when they ask, I say, “Yes, really, I can play that,” they look at me with a big smile of disbelief. After I finish playing it, they usually say, “Wow, do you have that on a CD?” The answer has been a disappointing, “No,” but after working with RightsFlow and getting this tune and other covers licensed, I can now turn a request into a sale. When I began landing gigs playing at restaurants, wedding receptions, corporate events, and even private clubs, such as the high rollers’ lounges at local Tahoe casinos, the audience wanted more than the traditional Celtic music tailor-made for the Celtic harp. I wanted to play music that they recognized and loved, so I worked at taking their requests. It was a stretch to play modern-day songs on the Celtic harp, but I succeeded, and my repertoire expanded exponentially.”

“Stairway to Heaven” is just one of 22 cover tunes on her new CD “Blue Jeans: Modern Pop on the Solo Harp”, available on iTunes, CD Baby, and Amazon. Signed copies are available for purchase from Anne’s website at or call or email Anne at 800-255-6318.

Original post on Limelight Artist Spotlight as written by Alex Holtz

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tips on how to get RSVPs for a party

It Worked!

Last week, I mentioned in this blog that I couldn’t figure out how to get people to reply to my CD Cocktail Party & Fundraiser invitation. I think I cracked the code, because now I’ve received a flurry of responses, and they keep coming in. Invited guests are getting back to me, whether they can make it or not!

Here’s what worked for me:

1. Send a party reminder, but don’t call it a “party reminder”—What you put into your subject line of your email counts. The subject line to my email read, “Are You Coming to My Party? Please Respond.” And they did.

2. Explain to invited guests why they need to respond—In the party reminder, I said, “If you plan to attend and haven't yet responded, please reply to this email and also indicate the number of guests you are bringing along. This way, I'll know how much food to order.” In other words, I told them that I couldn’t properly prepare for the party without hearing from them.


3. Send the reminder the old-fashioned way—I don’t mean by snail mail—Do send the reminder via e-mail. But don’t bother using lots of photos and pretty stuff in the email invite reminder. Don’t send the reminder through an online invitation service, either. Don’t do anything that will cause your invite reminder to get stuck in someone’s junk mail folder, never to be seen by human eyes. Use plain text (include a link to the original invitation), and bcc to no more than a dozen guests at a time, and your reminder has a much bigger chance of landing in the invited guest’s inbox.

That’s it. So now it’s the countdown to my big CD Release Party! And you’re invited, too!

Anne :-)

P.S.—Do tell...What worked for you when you were trying to get a large number of people to RSVP to a party invitation?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

How Do You Know How Many to Expect for Your CD Release Party?

My new CDs have arrived! I’ve sent them off to the U.S. Copyright office, to the CD Baby folks for digital distribution, and to my webmaster and virtual assistant. Next, the tracks get signed up at soundexchange  to receive statutory royalties from airplay. That’s all done, and now. I'm turning my attention back to the CD release party.

I sent the invite out via email to my family and local area fans on my email list, and I posted a facebook event page for it. I’ve downloaded and printed it, posting it around town. I’ve sent press releases about the party to the local paper and posted it on, a website dedicated to blasting musicians’ events to the world. To date, I received very few responses, despite the fact that I’ve asked people to respond so that I don’t run out of food at the party.

Why do so many people ignore RSVP requests (requests to know if they are attending or not)? I went on a mission to find out and see how to get people to respond. Here is what I found:

• A deadline to respond may cause people to hop to it (according to v.1073.

My take: My CD release party is a public event, paired with a fundraiser, and I still want people to believe they can show up, even if they decided to attend at the last minute.

• Some people don’t know what “RSVP” means (according to v.1073 and Helena Echlin.

My take: Really? Okay. I’ll word it differently, asking people to “respond with their intentions” instead of to “RSVP”.

• Tell people to respond and then they’ll get a ticket to the event. This implies that they won’t be able to attend the event without a ticket that they can download and print (according to Charlotte at at  and v1073.

My take: Again, I don’t want to imply that people can’t come if they don’t RSVP.

• Pick up the phone and follow-up email invites with a phone call. Not everyone reads their email, and not everyone’s Internet server accepts emails from invitation sites like and Just about everyone online suggests this technique.

My take: Yes, email is imperfect. So is snail mail. But since mine is a public CD release party and I’ve emailed hundreds of friends, family, and fans, phoning is out of the question. I did phone a few VIPs (like my brother, for instance), but otherwise, I’d need to hire a robocall service to do this kind of follow-up. If this were a small, private party, then a phone call reminder would work wonders.

Here’s what I plan to do: I’ll send an email reminder, gently requesting people to respond by replying to my email if they intend to come to the party. And instead of re-sending a party invite, which may have been blocked by their web servers, I’ll send a link to the invitation . I’ll ask that they respond by the 15th (the party is on the 20th) so that I can have a good sense of how many people to feed.

What do you think? Do you have any suggestions for me? What would you do to get people to respond? And how do you get people to come to your release parties? Or do you just send out invites and hope for the best?

Anne :-)

P.S.—By the way, the facebook event invite does not work, at least not for me. There are people who say that they are attending who obviously are not, and there are a large percentage of people who do not respond at all. And there is no way to re-send the invite to people who have decided to ignore it.

Monday, November 1, 2010

How to Put Together a Successful Release Party

I am the first to admit that I’m not sure I know the answer to this. And what is “successful”? Having a good turn out, selling lots of CDs, and having fun. But it’s more than that—creating buzz is the most important key, at least to me. I want folks to talk about my recordings days, weeks, and months after the party.

My past CD release parties seemed a bit dull, even to me. So, here are my simple rules for my upcoming CD release party that may turn it around. I’d love your feedback, too. Maybe you have some ideas that I can incorporate, even with just a few weeks away from the big event:

1. Partner with a charity and celebrate an upcoming holiday—I’m combining my upcoming CD release party with fundraising efforts, because people will come out to support a cause. Also, the venue I’ve selected to host the party, Harrah’s Lake Tahoe, is helping me throw the fundraiser, as well as a coming out party for my new albums. (Plus, I can write off the party as a charitable contribution or a business expense.)

I chose to work with Bread and Broth, which helps feed the hungry here at South Lake Tahoe. And since my party is on the Saturday before Thanksgiving, people can help fund holiday meals by attending my party. I chose a non-political charity, a cause that has broad general appeal.

Gary Johnson, from JJ Entertainment, gave me this idea, because we’ve both volunteered for Meals on Wheels home food delivery for seniors in our community and we wanted to do something to help the hungry.

2. Sell raffle tickets for gift baskets containing the new CDs and other goodies—The proceeds from the sale of the raffle tickets go to the charity. It’s a great way to allow a few lucky partygoers to come away with several of my CDs for very little money, almost as a gift.

I’m inviting the charity to bring their own volunteers to handle this and collect the money from the sale of the tickets. I’m also inviting the charity to speak at the party and gather up more volunteers for their cause.

3. Give out the raffle prizes at the end of the party—Winners need to be present. I’m not into shipping baskets of goodies to winners, but more importantly, people will stay until the end of the party.

4. Allow time to schmooze—I made one grand mistake at my previous CD release parties: I brought my harp and performed for a few minutes. People want to party and not attend a concert. They want a personal connection with me. I can’t mingle at the party and perform at the same time. The two don’t mix

So, the harp stays at home, and I’ve hired JJ Entertainment to spin my CDs and make announcements, and Screenbooth Lake Tahoe to keep people happily entertained. I’ll party with guests and sign CDs, and my husband will be handling the CD sales.

5. Have specially-priced CDs available, only to guests of my party—I want my guests to feel that they are getting a deal just by attending, and I’ll give them just that. And I’ll sign the CDs, too, if they like.

6. Create buzz—I’m sending press releases everywhere, posting the party online, announcing it to the local media. It’s a fundraiser, so it is a community event as well as an event that belongs in the entertainment section of the local papers.

My previous release parties were private parties, because I wanted to limit the amount of food served. I was scared of the $$$ involved to feed everyone. But this party is a fundraiser, and the more the merrier. All that I’m asking is that if folks plan to attend that they RSVP so that I don’t run out of food :-)

7. Create anticipation—Very few folks know exactly what tracks are on these CDs. They don’t know their titles. If they want to know more, they’ll need to show up to the party. After all, the CDs aren’t “released” until the party.

Have I forgotten anything? If you’ve thrown a successful CD release party, what did you do to make it a fabulous event? Even if you aren’t a musician with CDs, perhaps you’ve hosted a great product launch party and have some ideas to contribute....

My party is November 20th, and I’ll post here again afterwards to let you know how it went...Or if you are in the area, come and celebrate with me!

Anne :-)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

How to Survive a Bridal Show in a Down Economy

Musicians: It's fall bridal show season, and here's the big question: What 2 items cause brides to make decisions about hiring musicians at the bridal show?

1. Performing in your booth. Brides will fall in love with your music when they see and hear you live. Plus, other wedding vendors will fall in love with you, too, and recommend you to their clients.

2. Offering a discount available only at the bridal show. This means that the bride must hire you at the the show, sign your performance agreement at the show, and give you a deposit at the show. In this economy, they will make a decision, use a cell phone to confirm with their fiancés, and then do what it takes to receive a discount.

There's more info about exhibiting at bridal fairs in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" published by Hal Leonard and through online retailers including, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Brides: How do you get in on discounts at an upcoming bridal show? Take your cell phone, check book, cash, and credit cards to the bridal show. More and more vendors offer discounts that are only good at bridal shows, so be prepared to make up your mind quickly if you want to save money on your wedding services.

My upcoming book, "The Bride's Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable" (also published by Hal Leonard) has tons of money-saving music ideas. You can pre-order it at (available for shipping after December 15th).

Do you have more bridal show ideas? I'd love to hear them. Please share them here....

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Gig Must Go On

My friend and virtual assistant Christine Buffaloe went on a motorcycle ride last weekend and a bee went up her helmet and stung her. As she relayed her story to me, I was reminded of; not one, but two weddings where wasps flew up my dress as I played harp during the ceremony. I won’t tell you where I was stung (!), but it sure hurt. I continued to play as if nothing was amiss, even though I was in pain. The show must go on.

Have you encountered bugs and vermin trying to interrupt your performance, and how did you handle it?

(Note, my friend Chris finished her ride before seeking medical attention. So, maybe the “ride must go on” too)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

2nd Annual Wedding Faire and Fashion Show

Planning a wedding at Lake Tahoe or Northern Nevada? Meet and audition me at the 2nd Annual Wedding Faire and Fashion Show at Reno’s premiere special event center, The Grove--one of the first green special event centers in the country! Enjoy butler-passed appetizers and a full non-hosted bar as you listen to me perform on my Celtic harp. Email me with your request and I’ll play it for you. Admission is free!

Event details: 
October 3, 2010 at  11am-3pm

Location and information:
The Grove at South Creek
96 Foothill Rd.
Reno,  Nevada

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Turning and Avocation into a Vocation

The following was originally posted by Caroline Dowd-Higgins from her blog "This is Not the Career I Ordered" on August 2, 2010

Finding it hard to sit still at a desk job, Anne Roos had many occupations over the years before she found her dream career. She was a high school teacher in northern California but didn’t feel supported by the administration and soon burned out because it was not a good fit. All along she had been pursuing her passion on the weekends as a harpist for weddings, concerts and special events. But could she actually make money as a full-time musician?

Turning and Avocation into a Vocation

Anne knew she needed a change from the monotonous filler jobs that were not honoring her passions or her values. She longed for a career that stimulated her intellectually, artistically, and financially, so she took the plunge and decided to make playing the harp her livelihood and not her avocation.

In college, Anne studied music theory and received her formal music education at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). When the Celtic harp piqued her interests, she studied harp techniques from world-renowned harpist Sylvia Woods and contributed to her book Music Theory & Arranging Techniques for Folk Harps. Anne also studied professional stage performance with Ed Hooks (San Francisco, CA) and at the Living History Centre (Novato, CA). Fully trained as a professional musician, Anne didn’t pursue the Celtic harp as a career option right out of university but is now enjoying the opportunities to perform, market, and promote herself as a freelance musician.

From the Wedding March to Frank Sinatra

Her performance career started with Renaissance fairs, and she quickly became a favored soloist for many other types of events. Anne is especially popular for weddings and corporate events. Her concert performances attract international acclaim—Anne’s music has been featured on United Airlines in-flight Music Service. Her music repertoire spans traditional Celtic (Irish, Scottish, Welsh), English, folk, religious and secular, Early, Renaissance and classical music, to Broadway, contemporary modern, popular movie music, Beatles, rock and jazz, and her range is virtually unlimited.

Anne can easily provide the traditional “Canon in D” and “Here Comes the Bride” for a wedding processional, but can also play classic Frank Sinatra or Metallica at a reception. Her ability to faithfully play this broad range of musical styles has made here a popular and much sought after musician for all types of events.

Anne also has a number of CDs available on the market. Her recordings are unique—Her recent releases are actually little books with CDs tucked neatly into the back page. This way, instead of simply buying downloads, her customers have the option of buying souvenir of Anne’s performance that has added value as a gift item.

Risky Business

So why didn’t Anne start out her career as musician and bypass teaching and all the other jobs? At that point in her life, being a musician seemed too risky and not a practical way to earn a living. But over the years, Anne developed a true sense of what she really values on the job and all things kept pointing back towards what she really loved – the Celtic harp.

She now appreciates the opportunity to make her own decisions. She chooses her own bosses in the form of clients for whom she performs. When she made the commitment to give the harp a go seriously, she kept a part-time job at a book store until her scheduled gigs became a full-time endeavor. These baby steps allowed her to pursue guerilla marketing to get the word out about her offerings and made the transition financially feasible.

Since Anne is her own agent, publicist, and marketing specialist, she has become an expert at building professional relationships. Much of her work comes from referrals so it is imperative that she make each client happy, especially the brides, in order to keep the business moving forward. Brides talk to each other so this network has become very valuable in building her business.

Keeping the Brides Happy

Anne is also a published author and considered a wedding music specialist with her book “The Musician’s Guide to Brides”, published by Hal Leonard books as a how-to manual for musicians who are interested in performing at weddings. She also wrote an upcoming book, through the same publisher. It’s for brides and is called “The Bride’s Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable”, due on the market in December of 2010.

Anne counsels and mentors musicians and entrepreneurs to help them make a living by gigging and provides amazing information and resources on her blog: What’s Up With That Gig? This is a wonderful way for Anne to pay-it-forward to others who are paving their way as a professional musician. She covers topics like writing a press release, marketing tactics for musicians and tapping into your business intuition.

Anne also hired a virtual personal assistant to do much of the administrative work for the business so she can focus on making music and meeting with new clients. The human touch is what distinguishes Anne’s business. She takes pride in meeting with prospective clients in person to get to know them and design music for their event in a more personal and customized way.

While business has steadily increased, Anne remembers the early days when she would take any job she could get because she needed the money. She later developed a 6th sense, an intuition of sorts, about which clients she would enjoy working with, ensuring that they would derive maximum benefit from her performance.

Anne really appreciates being her own boss and being able to take time off when she needs it. She has also learned to hire others who do what she cannot to make her business more successful. Her website is her best marketing tool and includes audio and video examples of her work plus an online store where clients can buy her books and many recordings.

A Tweeting Harpist

The rise of social media has helped Anne connect with clients on Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and elsewhere on the ‘net. She is a Celtic harpist with an online presence and finds these resources incredibly beneficial to continue to build her brand and client base.

While classroom teaching was not a good fit in a previous life, Anne now enjoys working with students presenting a number of educational demonstrations for school assemblies annually. She presents workshops and teaches private lessons when her busy performance schedule permits. Anne enjoys teaching students one-on-one, and even does so utilizing computer teleconferencing software, such as Skype. Her public performances include appearances in venues both small and grand: from book stores, private clubs, and café concert venues to resort hotels, cruise ships, Highland Games, Celtic and Renaissance fairs, wineries, meditation retreats, and convention centers. She has accepted invitations to perform for many dignitaries at home and abroad, including, the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Ireland!

Join the Club

Anne told me that she will know she has made it when she can book a private plane to take her and her harp to play gigs wherever she wants around the world! But seriously, she always welcomes new opportunities. At present, Anne is located in the Lake Tahoe region but she aspires to grown her business to take on more international performance opportunities.

For now, this Celtic harpist is very happy playing to her strengths and living her passion. While most musicians transition the other way from a musical career to something else, Anne has taken her musical role to new heights and is thriving with a multi faceted career that includes performance, consulting, teaching and advising other musicians. She even formed a Celtic Harp Club for fans who can follow her travels and receive a free download of her music.

Anne’s Advice and Action Steps:

Hire professionals to do what you can’t. It will save you time and money in the long run.
Seek out resources and support from trusted referrals.
Don’t quit your day job. When transitioning into a new career as an entrepreneur, retain and income until you know it’s time to move on.

Quote: “Take baby steps to realize your dream. It will happen but be patient and always ready.”

Saturday, July 24, 2010

How to Make a Moment During A Performance

Here’s some really great information from my good friend and guest blogger, David Jackson, better known as “Jammin’ Dave Jackson” from his wildly popular podcast for musicians, The Musician’s Cooler.

As you read Dave’s post, think to yourself, “How can I create a special moment in my performance, whether it is at a wedding, a corporate gig, or even at a public concert?” Take this one step further and think about how you can make a moment in a conversation, bring something to light that will help people remember you. Enough food for thought. Here is Dave’s post:

“Making a moment” is technically is a phrase I’ve heard Tom Jackson use (and from what I hear his DVDs are awesome). When you are on stage there will be times when the audience decides to have their own show. An example of this is at a Pearl Jam concert in St. Louis where “Kim” was translating the lyrics into sign language. Eddie Veder decided to pull her on stage. This made a one of a kind moment that people will remember, “remember when Eddie pulled that chic on stage?”. Here is the video.

One of the things that can make you more endearing to the audience is to have a good sense of humor about yourself. Justin Timberlake has boosted his popularity through his appearances on Saturday Night Live. This boosted his popularity amongst men (a demographic he was probably lacking when he was in the boy band).

Michael Bolton was on the Jimmy Kimmel show and working with Jimmy, he produced a bit called “The Michael Bolton school of Michael Bolton.” It’s hilarious as Michael continues to steal the microphone from little kids. While I’m not a huge fan of Bolton, I do give him credit and think he’s “cooler” now that I see he’s not so uptight. You can watch the video here.

So when the audience throws you a curve ball, don’t get upset, laugh it off, and go with the flow. Chances are you will end up with a one of a kind moment that you’ll end up telling your grandchildren about.

Read more of Jammin’ Dave’s fantastic posts and hear his podcasts at Thank you, Dave, for your contribution!!!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

How to use Facebook to Promote your Products or Services

Here’s some really great information for any gigging musicians, including wedding musicians! This article is from my virtual assistant and guest blogger, Christine Buffaloe of Serenity Virtual Assistant Services.

I currently manage and maintain several business pages for clients on Facebook. Over the past couple of years they have seen an increase in sales and interest in their services as well.

When using this tool it is important to remember that Facebook is just that, a tool. It is one of many, but I have found it to be extraordinarily useful.

Here are just a few ways in which you can use your business page to promote:

1. Post items to your status updates that pertain to your area of expertise using keywords in the content.

2. Set up Google Alerts to find content to share with your fans. This can be from blogs and other websites.

3. Use the Events function to create events that you are hosting or promoting.

4. If you have a blog, import your blog into your "Notes" on your business page and you will have ready-made content every time you post a new entry to your blog.

5. If you know Facebook Markup Language (Facebook's version of HTML) or know of someone that does, add your newsletter sign up box to your page. You can even add your products as well. See sidebar at

6. Create a music library of your music and share with your fans.

7. Post your videos to your page. If you are a musician, post your music videos. If you are an artist, post videos of the creation of your art.

8. Post photos and lots of them. They are a great way of showing you at your gigs, book signings or gallery openings.

There are many ways in which to use Facebook to promote. For more ideas on missed opportunities on Facebook, go to Serenity Virtual Assistant Services to receive your free tutorial on how to create a Facebook profile or purchase the CD or transcript of "11 Ways to Avoid Missed Opportunities on Facebook".

Monday, June 28, 2010

Why Giving Away Free Music Downloads Is a Great Music Marketing Technique

Musicians inexperienced in business economics often don’t understand the idea of giving away free music downloads in order to earn sales. Well, I can’t tell you what to do. Sure, I could show you some “evidence”, but my market research is poorly-defined. So really, I can only testify what I’ve done and point you to other bands who swear by it too.

I started out giving away free music on Back then, was paying artists every time someone downloads their music. When the site closed down, I had a tough dilemma. Should we keep giving away music or should we stop? I decided to test it.

I took a risk. I realized the reason that we were one of the Top 30 bands on was, in part, because of our strategy of how we gave away free music downloads. Thanks to that site, we now have well over a two hundred thousand fans around the world. It is all thanks to free downloads.

WHY does it work? Because my whole music marketing philosophy is not about selling music, it’s about making fans.

You see, my goal is not to sell one CD. My goal is to make a FAN who will buy CD after CD through my entire music career, maybe even provide me with a retirement.

You see, I STILL have a new fan even if they don’t buy my music. True fans tell friends. And friends tell friends. Somewhere magically along the way, people buy my CDs. That’s why I make a living as an independent musician.

Honestly, I won’t claim this is for everyone. If you’re fiddler isn’t comfortable giving away music. Don’t do it. There are other ways to promote yourself. So do what makes you more comfortable.

As for me, I publish a The Bards Crier Music Marketing and Promotion Ezine, and I get musicians telling me all the time how much it’s helped them. But there are just as many others who’ve done as well without.

I guess, I just see my method easier. It doesn’t require me trying to sell someone on something I think is great. They only have to listen again and again. I just provide them the music. They listen and listen and listen. And they are convinced.

Think of it like radio. People freely listen to music over and over ad nauseum. Then they buy the CD. That’s what free music downloads does.

It’s a little counter intuitive but the results are just tremendous. If you’re a musician, give it a try. And if you’re a Celtic musician, make sure you submit your music to the Celtic MP3s Music Magazine.

Marc Gunn is an acoustic Celtic folk musician, called “The Godfather of Celtic music online” for his steadfast support of indie Celtic music, free Celtic music downloads, and his award-winning Irish and Celtic Music Podcast, one of the most-popular music podcasts on iTunes. He has helped 1000s of musicians save and make money with their musical groups through The Bards Crier Music Marketing Ezine.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

3 Reasons for Hiring a Musician for your Wedding

My new book, "The Bride's Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable" is now available for pre-sale on My book is filled with information for hiring wedding musicians rather than using iPod stereo or pre-recorded music.
Need more reasons? Blog author Amanda Williams offers several reasons:

1. Live bands are great for getting guests to interact with each other.

2. They are more likely to remember the band that played at the wedding than any sort of prerecorded music.

3. You will get the most for your money if you are willing to hire a band. This is especially true if you are choosing a band that plays requests or follows a set playlist.

She also says, "After you have experienced a live band performing at your event, you may never want to have prerecorded music played at another event afterward." Read more at Merchant Solutions IQ.

And if you need tips on how to hire a harpist, string trio or quartet, check out Lianne McCombs blog.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Music for Your Wedding

Got wedding questions? Need some music suggestions for your wedding? You'll find answers to many questions, such as what to songs to choose for your wedding march. You can also type in your own questions and receive answers. also contains answers for many other wedding questions you may have. It's a sort of "Dear Abbey" for wedding how-to questions and wedding etiquette questions. Check it out. Ask some questions. Get some answers. Have a wonderful wedding day!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Learn How to Write a Press Release

There are plenty of suggestions in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides", where you'll read that press releases lead to free advertising. It's simply a bit of tantalizing information that you send off to the media. It tells them why they shouldn't pass up the opportunity to mention you in their next newspaper or magazine edition, their next podcast, radio or TV broadcast, or their website e-zine or blog.

Your press releases can round up publicity that money simply cannot by. If you're a musician or entertainer, here are 7 examples of what publicity can do for you:

1. Publicity brings you wedding business
2. Publicity can get the word out about your musical abilities
3. Publicity turns you into a music expert
4. Publicity give your clients and your potential clients a chance to know more about you.
5. Publicity for "good works" makes you look good in yur immediate community and among your musician peers.
6. Publicity gives you credentials.
7. Publicity can bring you fantastic performing opportunities that you would have never received without the media exposure.

Get started rounding up that publicity by creating press releases. My book gives you specific ideas for writing press releases to create wedding business if you are a musician. For more general instructions about press releases for musicians, you'll also find some great additional pointers from Christopher Knab's "Music is My Business Blog". In his blog, you'll read:

* When to write a press release

* What the print and broadcast media need

* Layout and essential info

* How to structure a press release

You can also pick up some great press release ideas from the Publicity Hound, Joan Stewart. Sign up for her FREE "89 Ways to Write Powerful Press Releases". Or if you want it all, here it is in one great ebook download.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Marketing Tactics for Musicians

Tanglewood Productions hosted the first in a series of forums discussing the technical aspects of the music business, legalities, the rise of iTunes and trends in the music industry. The forum also included issues from using the Internet as a tool to marketing tactics for musicians and good business tips.

You can now view a video of this panel discussion. I was honored to be one of the panelists, along with Eric Chun of Creative Music Services and Mitch Koulouris of Gigatone Entertainment.

Tanglewood Productions is open to suggestions for upcoming forum topics. So if you have an idea, contact Michael at Tanglewood.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

When Your Client Isn’t the Bride-Part 3

This is the last in a 3-part series on the ups and downs with working with a client that is not the bride.

When Your Client is the Mother of the Bride, the Groom, or Other Family and Friends of the Bride

These people, the bride’s loved ones, are emotionally connected to the wedding details, unlike booking agents or wedding coordinators.

Most of the musicians I interviewed had no problems or issues working with the mothers of brides, or any of her family and friends, for that matter. They typically do not hover about musicians on the wedding day, because they are part of the wedding party and busy tending to other activities. As long as they are speaking for the best interests of the bride and groom, family members are a pleasure to work with.

The trouble arises when a loved one, typically the mother of the bride or the mother of the groom, makes decisions about your services without consulting with the bride and groom first. Then she is no longer working for the wedding couple’s best interests.

It’s rare when a conflict of interest arises between the wedding couple and the person who actually hired me. When it does, I try to be as diplomatic as possible. I listen to the bride’s concerns and then explain my situation: Her mother signed my contract, and therefore, I must follow her instructions. Then I ask the bride if she can discuss the issue with her mother and come to a mutual agreement.

The person who signs my contract has “veto power.” That’s the way it is, legally. So, I take the time to explain this to the bride and groom if differences of opinion come up. Open communication is the key.

I’ve barely touched the surface of the problems that can arise at weddings and how to solve them.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

How to Use Your Intuition in Business

We really do have this thing called "intuition" that keeps us protected. Everyone has it, but it seems that in modern times, some people pooh-pooh it as some kind of hocus-pocus. They seem to think that we always need a rational reason for decisions that we make. We don't.

Our gut feelings are ingrained in us. They are what primitive man used for survival. And these feelings are still within us.

We can choose to listen to that little voice that tells us when something seems fishy:

For musicians: When you have a client that wants to book you, but your gut feeling tells you, "This bride is going to be trouble." Or when you're in contact with an instrument buyer or seller and your gut feeling tells you, "This person is running a scam." Or when the booking agent has a dream job for you and your gut tells you, "This job is a myth and this agent is a weasel." Or when the flutist across town wants to team up with you and your gut feeling tells you, "That person will be impossible to work with."

For brides: When you are ready to hire a wedding coordinator, but your gut says, “This person is not going to let me make any decisions.” Or when you talk to any wedding vendor and you feel that maybe, just maybe, their services don’t match up to all their hype. Or maybe you get the feeling that the minister, as kind as he is, will put everyone to sleep at your wedding ceremony.

For everyone: When you doubt that an email inquiry from a client or a service provider is legit, you’re probably correct.

Heed your intuition! Even if you have absolutely no physical evidence that anything will go wrong, your intuition is trying to protect you.

For every plane crash, there are always a handful of people who say, "I just had a feeling that I should change flights, so I did." There is a fantastic book on the subject called, "The Gift of Fear". Specifically, it tells women how to listen to our intuition to prevent physical harm from killers and rapists. But the book is really for everyone, teaching us the signs to look out for when someone is not whom they make themselves out to be.

But I digress. I believe that in business, when we aren't so hungry for money--to land a big paying gig, to sell an instrument, to get a great deal on a used instrument, to find the cheapest wedding service, to close the business deal--we listen more to this little protective voice. It's really okay to say, "No thank you" when you think something is amiss. Later, you might find out that you were absolutely correct to do so. You don’t need to justify your decision.

Anne :-)
Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos
Author of "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings" published by Hal Leonard Books

(Also find me on Facebook and myspace)
and soon,
“The Bride’s Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable”

FYI, my book, “The Musician’s Guide to Brides”, available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including, and of course, at my website Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos

I’d love to hear your thoughts about how you have used intuition in your business and personal life. Please add to the discussion.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

When Your Client Isn’t the Bride-Part 2


Call them wedding coordinators, wedding consultants, wedding plan­ners, and even producers and event planners. They are all the same thing—a person who guides the bride through all the details leading up to her wedding day and on her wedding day.

Most brides turn to independent wedding coordinators when they are overwhelmed with wedding details and don’t have the time or energy to deal with it all. Sometimes, the bride is planning a “desti­nation wedding”* and does not know how to contact good wedding professionals.

Wedding coordinators come in all shapes and sizes. Wedding coor­dinators are not only independent, self-employed businesspeople. If a bride decides to have her wedding at a house of worship, that church or synagogue may include a coordinator for the day of the wedding in addition to pre-marital counseling. If the ceremony is in a wedding chapel, the minister or celebrant may act as the wedding coordina­tor prior to the wedding day and on the day of the wedding, too.

There are no state regulations governing the practices of wedding coordinators, at least that I know of. However, wedding coordina­tors should have local business licenses and clean records with the Better Business Bureau. This is the way to check them out to make sure they are legitimate. You can also check with the Association of Bridal Consultants to confirm if the coordinator is a member in good standing.

Here is how Gerard Monaghan, past president of the Association of Bridal Consultants, explains the way independent wedding coordi­nators typically work with musicians:

“Most bridal consultants recommend at least three musicians to the bride and let her make their final decision and sign the contracts. However, a good consultant also will get a letter of authorization from the bride to act as her agent, so the consultant can make the appropriate decisions, freeing the bride to enjoy the day without handling the details.”

Most of the independent wedding coordinators I reached prior to writing this book do not contract directly with the musicians. They charge a fee to the bride to give her suggestions or even a list of pos­sibilities. The bride then selects her favorite musician or band among the choices given to her. Then the coordinator contacts the musician about availability and cost. The wedding coordinator forwards your contract to the bride for a signature.

It’s quite a different story when working with wedding chapels. These in-house wedding coordinators do not work for themselves: they draw a salary, and sometimes a bonus or a commission, for book­ing as many weddings as they possibly can to make rental payments on the chapel.

The major dfference between booking agents and wedding coor­dinators is that booking agents send you on wedding jobs while wedding coordinators oversee your work at the wedding. This can be a curse or a blessing, depending upon the amount of experience the wedding coordinator has under their belt.

Here are the marks of the ideal wedding coordinator:

1. They are a good communicator and will be in touch with you well before the wedding day to supply you with all the instruc­tions you need.
2. They understand the terms of your contract, the services you, and what you need from them to be able to deliver your services properly.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Friday, April 2, 2010

When Your Client Isn’t the Bride-Part 1

I am dedicating these next few blog postings to musicians with tips for when your client isn't the bride. This will be a weekly series, so stay tuned......


“My sole inspiration is a telephone call from a producer.”—Cole Porter
Good booking agents have a handle on their musicians’ talents, so that they can make decisions about who to hire at a moment’s notice. There are some booking agents who receive a commission from you to find you work.

Waiting for the phone to ring from a booking agent who hires talent for weddings may be a long wait. They work for the bride, not for you.

The booking agent is hired and paid by the bride. They’ll phone, fax, or email you with a job order, simply asking you if you are available. Then they’ll supply you with the time, date, location, and all the particulars in order for you to respond quickly with your price and availability. “Quickly” is the operative word here. A bride will hire a booking agent for the following reasons:
1. She hasn’t the time or energy to search for live entertainers on her own.
2. She has a lot of money to spare and is happy to pay someone to take care of hiring entertainment for her wedding.
3. She has looked for entertainers on her own, but has exhausted all the possibilities she knows of.
4. She needs to hire a musician fast!

Whatever the reason may be, the booking agent will need a response from you pronto.

The longer it takes for them to get back to the bride with your quote, the greater the chance that they will phone someone else and assume you are not interested. You stand a better chance of landing the the gig if you give them a small discount, because the bride is more likely to book you with a smaller mark-up. Also, a booking agent may be more likely to recommend your services if they know you’ll give them a discount.

If a booking agent contacts you about a wedding gig and you have never worked with them before, do some research. Phone other musicians in your area and see if they have had any experience working with the agent. You’ll want to find out if they were sent good wedding jobs and if they were paid in a timely manner.

When a booking agent hires you to play for a wedding, ask them to sign your contract, just as you would with all other clients. They may have their own contract for you to sign, as well.

The booking agent will tell you what to play, when to play it, and how to dress. They’ll give you directions to the wedding location and describe exactly where you’ll set up. They’ll even let you know if you will be served a meal at the wedding or not. They are your sole contact for the wedding. You will not be working with the bride.

This can be wonderful if the booking agent is truly on top of all the details and communicates them to you. It is not so wonderful when the agent drops the ball and leaves out some important pieces of information that you’ll need to know to do your job properly. After being booked for just one wedding job through a booking agent, you’ll know if you’ll ever want to work with them again.

If you decide to build a good, solid relationship with them, they will continue to think of you when a bride is seeking just your kind of talent. Get in touch with the booking agent right after the wedding job, thank them, and report to them how things went.

There is one thing you must never do when a booking agent sends you on a wedding gig: Never give out your business cards or brochures to a wedding guest when you are hired by a booking agent to perform. Instead, give the guests your booking agent’s card. This is the best way to say “Thank you!” to the booking agent who sent you out on that job.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Bridal Show Shocker!

Today, I received in my inbox some startling news from my friend Becca Carter, wedding insurance agent over at the Wedding Protector Plan®. The first quarter of the year is when some of the largest bridal shows happen, so I wanted to pass this information along...

Boston police say thousands of brides-to-be and wedding vendors have been scammed by a web site advertising a fake Boston bridal show. More than 6,000 individuals and vendors have paid and signed up with the web site, promising all that a large, elegant wedding show provides. Vendors discovered it was a scam after they tried to contact the convention center, asking when they could set up their exhibits for the show. The FBI is now involved and the web site has been taken down. Read more about this tragedy from The Boston Globe.

How can you make sure that a bridal show is legitimate?

Tips for Musicians:
Never sign up to exhibit at a bridal show without talking with the producers on the phone. Ask them the following questions:

1. Have they produced any other wedding shows or is this one of their first events? Get statistics of how many brides have attended past shows so that you’ll know how many bookings may be possible for you.

2. Where is the show located? Exhibit at shows in areas where you’ll want to travel to perform.

3. What are the dimensions of the booth? Can you fit your entire ensemble into that booth?

4. What’s in the contract? Yes, you need a contract! Find out what the promoter will guarantee to you, in writing.

5. Use your gut feelings to decide if you want to work with a particular bridal fair producer. If they come off like a slimy used car salesman with a hard-sell attitude, run in the other direction.

6. What is the total fee that the producer will charge to you? Take into account all the extras that might not be included in the standard booth fee: electricity, linen rental, extra chairs or tables, etc.

My book, “The Musician’s Guide to Brides”, contains an entire chapter about getting the most out of bridal shows. It’s available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, and of course, at my website at Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos

Tips for Brides, Mothers-of-Brides, Event Planners, And Anyone Attending Bridal Fairs:

In my upcoming book, “The Bride’s Guide to Musicians: Live Wedding Music Made Easy and Affordable”, I’ll be devoting an entire section to successfully navigating around bridal shows.

To avoid spending money pre-registering for a bridal fair that is a scam, make sure that the show is well advertised. If a promoter is spending good money advertising the show in your local paper, on billboards, on radio, and even on TV, the show is certainly legitimate. A con artist is not going to spend money that they stole from people to advertise a fake bridal fair.

You can also contact the venue where the show is to take place. They can verify that the show will indeed go on as planned.

And if something still doesn’t feel right and you are in doubt about the legitimacy of a bridal fair, don’t register online. Simply show up at the appointed time of the show. All bridal shows allow you to pay admission at the door if you have not pre-registered online.

Bridal shows are great places to find all your wedding vendors in one shopping trip. Don’t let this one horrible incident prevent you from attending bridal shows in your local area.

Please stay in touch, write and comment. I’m looking forward to reading your stories and feedback.

Anne :-)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mix With Music Masters

On February 24, 2010 at 5:30-7:30 pm I will be a panelist at this music industry networking opportunity.
This is an evening to meet music industry pros who will join in a panel discussion of today's music business and the essentials you'll want in your toolkit as you make your way. I will be on hand, along with other top music industry experts at this free meet-and-greet event. Seating is limited. Request your personal invitation at Tanglewood Productions.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tips for Writing a Good Ad

It’s an art to be able to write an ad that resonates in the bride’s consciousness, which makes her feel like she MUST find out more about you and your music. I’m not an advertising executive, so I’ll just offer a few points that have worked well for me over the years.

1. What’s the purpose of your ad? Of course, you are introducing yourself to brides. You are also telling them why they should consider hiring you—you are explaining your special benefits to them. This  harkens back to your brochure design, (see previous post) but unless you are advertising on the Internet, you will have very limited space to work with. Boil your advertising copy down to exactly what you want to convey. Be brief and avoid hype. Your print ad is not a late-night infomercial.

2. Write your copy so that a kid can understand it. If you have any children who are at least ten years old, run your rough draft by them. It’s a brilliant way to test your copy. Your ad must make sense to your readers, regardless of their educational level. Besides, if it’s too complex, no one will take the time to read it. Make it fun to read and your advertisement will be remembered.

This method also works for artwork—Jerry DeCrotie, the illustrator for this book, regularly shares his cartoon ideas with his kids. “Sometimes they come up with ideas I haven’t even thought about”.

3. Write a headline that stands out. The headline draws the reader into the body of your ad. Look at the headlines of the existing ads where you’ll be advertising. Then, make your ad different so it will stand out. Let your headline introduce the topic of your ad in just a few words. Be sure that the words in the headline are at that 5th grade reading level, too.

4. Leave room in the ad for a photo. Even if you are purchasing a small, business card sized ad, include a photo showing you with your instrument. Select a photo that looks great even when reduced down to a very small size. If you are not sure which photo to use, ask your graphic designer to help you select the right one.

5. Include a “ call to action”. Tell the readers how to reach you. List your phone number, email address, and web site.

A final word about print advertising: Be a proof Nazi. When you agree to purchase advertising, find out not only when copy is due, but also when you will receive a proof. Respect the deadline to submit corrections. You may have very little time to proof an ad before it goes into print, so get on it right away. In particular, proof all your copy with a fine-tooth comb, especially your contact information. Once an ad goes into print, it cannot be fixed.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Thursday, February 4, 2010

What to Include in Promotional Brochures

1. A headline. You want this statement to catch the reader’s attention and cause the reader to want to learn more about your services.

2. Your contact information: your name or your band’s name, area code with phone number, email address, and website address. Your address may be included or not, depending on how you intend to distribute your brochures. If the brochure will be a self-mailer, just print your return address on the blank side of the brochure, and there will be no need to print it elsewhere. Include this information on the front of your brochure, and even on several other panels of your brochure, for good measure.

3. Copyright notice. Put a © with your name and the year on the brochure, usually on the back of the brochure or in some inconspicuous place. This is giving copyright notice and will help to insure that your competitors do not swipe the printed information and artwork in your brochure.

4. The benefits of hiring you to perform. Review your competitions’ brochures to decide what to include. Not all of the benefits you list have to be uniquely your own. For instance, your competition may list that they provide amplification free of charge. It may be prudent for you to do the same, just so that your clients know you also have a sound system available. However, also add the unique benefits to hiring you. Your clients will believe they are getting more value for their money.

5. Testimonials. These are positive quotes from key people. If you are just starting out, you can use verbal quotes from friends, mentors, and your music instructor. If you have been performing a while, use quotes from the thank-you notes you received from past wedding clients. You can also include brief excerpts of quotes from reviews of your public stage performances and your CDs, but remember your target client, the bride. It will be most important to her that other wedding clients of yours have something positive to say about you. Be honest in all the quotes you provide and respect your client’s intelligence. People can see through boastfulness. If they think you are making stuff up and are full of boloney, will they hire you?

6. Educate your potential clients. What can you tell your future clients about your instrument and the kind of music that is your specialty? Do a little research and include a short paragraph. And if you have been performing for a while, offer brides suggestions about how to select their music, how to hire musicians, or any other kinds of free advice. Give them a little free information, just for picking up your brochure and showing an interest in you. Offering advice establishes you as an authority in your field.

7. Your experience. This is also known as your bio, and this deserves an entirely new blog posting . . .

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Wonderful World of Interactive Gigs

I started the New Year off performing for Edie’s 70th birthday party. What a blast. Her husband, Jack, invited me to play for the birthday dinner at a popular Chinese restaurant in old town Folsom, California. Jack made all the musical selections with me beforehand, and he asked many questions about the tunes. I just thought he was interested, but he made a game of it at the birthday party.

Once everyone was seated, Jack announced to all guests the instructions to the game: They would hear one tune played on the harp that was the love song from the movie “Ghost”, and another tune that was made popular in the movie “Ordinary People”. As soon as someone hears the song, they need to raise their hand and shout out the answer. That person would get a prize (a free sandwich coupon at a local eatery).

Not only did the guests become attentive to the music between their courses of egg rolls and chow mien, it struck up all kinds of conversations about music. And Edie, the guest of honor, was having a great time, as everyone sang “Happy Birthday” accompanied by me on the harp.

My next gig this year was performing for a corporate dinner party at the lovely Edgewood Country Club here at Lake Tahoe. A meeting planner booked me for the performance, and she didn’t know the age group that would be attending the party. So I brought along a wide assortment of sheet music, just in case guests would have requests. Turns out they began requesting music from the moment I began playing Sting’s “Field’s of Gold” and the Beatle’s “I Will”.

In the middle of the festivities, the host announced me by name and said I’d be playing something unusual on the harp for everyone. I selected “Stairway to Heaven”, which was met with “Woot! Woot!” from the crowd. Then, they held up their cell phones, lighters, and candle centerpieces to show their appreciation. I received a big round of applause, quite unexpectedly.

When a gig becomes interactive, it’s great fun for the musicians and the guests. It’s the reason to have live music at an event—getting the guests involved in music that is organically created at any moment.

Tips for Brides, Event Planners, And Anyone Hiring Performers

Invent ways to have your guests interact with the musician. You could include a musical guessing game, allow your guests to throw out requests to willing musicians, do live karaoke with your musicians, pair up songs to announce different events at your party, and more. The music can become the party game or centerpiece of your event, and people will long remember the music afterwards.

Tips for Musicians

Extend your repertoire. Be willing to take requests, accompany others, or simply show off a tune that people won’t expect. Learn to read the crowd by their age ranges and trust your instincts to play what you know they’ll enjoy. It’s a lot of fun to be flexible and surprise your audience.

I have a friend who leads a string quartet, and to this day, one of the most surprisingly popular tunes his ensemble plays is the theme from the Flintstone’s cartoon. Blows the socks off of anyone who may think they are a stuffy string quartet. And I can’t tell you how many people crave hearing “Stairway to Heaven”, “Free Bird” and perhaps a Nirvana or Metallica tune on the Celtic harp. You become a popular commodity when you can think outside the box and provide some unexpected entertainment for your guests. Word gets around about your abilities and you’ll get more bookings.

Have a wonderful New Year and make sure to check out more tips for musicians in my book “The Musician’s Guide to Brides” (which also contains great marketing ideas for all gigs) available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including, , and of course, at my website at
I’m looking forward to reading your stories, comments, and feedback.

Anne :-)

Anne Roos
Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos

(And contact me at for personal consultation and mentoring—Make a living while gigging)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Finding the Perfect Bridal Fair to Show Off Your Talents

I will an exhibitor at the Dream Wedding Show on February 28, 2010 at 11 am-4 pm.
Located at the Cal Expo
1600 Exposition Blvd.
Sacramento, California

Before committing to a Bridal Fair, ask the following questions:

1. Has the promoter produced any other wedding fairs or is this one of their first events? If they produce shows on a regular basis, request statistics of how many brides walked through the front door. This way, you will get an idea of how many bookings are possible at the show (but if they quote 1,000, remember that you will only have time to talk with a small percentage of these brides). Keep in mind promoters may quote the number of people in attendance, not brides. If this is the case, this figure will be inflated, since brides often bring parents and friends along with them to shows.

2. Where is the show located? Brides are likely to attend shows that are in the same towns where they plan to get married. If you live in a rural town fifty miles away from where the bridal fair is held, are you willing to drive this distance for each wedding you book at the show?

3. What are the dimensions of the booth? You’ll need to determine if you, your ensemble members, your performance equipment, several chairs, and a table can fit comfortably in the space provided. After your visit to another bridal fair, you should have a good idea of how much space you will need to eff ectively promote your musical talents to brides.

Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

3 Money Saving Tips for Audio and Video Demos

When a potential client is intrigued by the services you have to offer for their wedding (perhaps because of your wonderful business cards and brochures), the very question they are likely to ask is, “Do you have a demo?”

If your answer is "no", read on for 3 money saving tips:
  1. Incorporate video clips of your live performances at weddings into your demo tapes. As long as the film quality is apparent, you can save a bundle in shooting costs. You’ll need to get permission from the bride to use the video as a demo. As a gesture of goodwill, you will also need to credit the videographer in the film.
  2. Record the video demo first, and then use its soundtrack for your audio demo.
  3. Extract stills from your video demo to use as promotional photos.
Copyright © 2008 by Anne Roos, excerpt from "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings", published by Hal Leonard Books. All rights reserved. No part of this may be reproduced in any form, without written permission, except by a reviewer who wishes to quote brief passages in connection with a review.

Hundreds of additional tips, are available for musicians (and all entrepreneurs) in my book, "The Musician's Guide to Brides" available wherever Hal Leonard Books are sold: music and bookstores, and through online retailers including,, Sylvia Woods Harp Center catalog, and of course, at my website at

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

For Musicians and Entrepreneurs

If you want to keep up with how to use the Internet to reach new customers and fans, and to stay in touch with them, you've got to read Joan Stewart's great free e-book, "The Best of The Publicity Hound's Tips of the Week 2009". It's a compilation from Joan's fabulous weekly e-newsletters, which I always can't wait to receive.

I got introduced to Joan when I heard her teleseminar with my friend Bob Baker called "Do-it-Yourself PR Tips for Songwriters, Musicians & Bands on a Budget" . But to me, her very best e-book is her "How to Be a Kick-Butt Publicity Hound", the up-to-date bible on how to get the word out about any business. It contains some very novel ideas. Not your run-of-the-mill business book.

For musicians, you'll find Joan's helpful advice, along with more business advice in my "The Musician's Guide to Brides: How to Make Money Playing Weddings" book, available on,, and of course at my website, Celtic Harp Music by Anne Roos.