Keith Bradford Records New Music Business Bible

Keith Bradford Photo Credit: Natasha Slinko

Photo Credit: Natasha Slinko

The jury’s still out on who wrote the book of love but we now know that Keith Bradford’s just written the definitive book of the music business. Being that this is the 21st century, the book is actually a DVD and will eventually  be available as a download. 


The Music Business-Ya Gotta Love It is a nuts ‘n’ bolts how-to instructional manual for surviving and thriving in the music business. Everything from what’s a TV tile to stool; what is it good for?, using street teams and achieving airplay dreams. Amazingly, it’s the first of its kind to gather this kind of arcane knowledge about the music business in one place and Bradford’s proud to be the one to do it.


JOSE FELICIANO: Still Lighting The Fire

Cover Nov 19, 2010

By Don Graham

Often credited with opening la puerta for Latin American singers in North America, Jose Feliciano is still filling rooms with people and great music, four decades later. Jose literally burst onto the scene with his soulful, latinesque version of The Doors mega hit ‘Light  My Fire’. This song got the attention of radio, finally settling at number three on the U.S. pop charts.

When I spoke to Jose from his home in sunny Florida he gave this insight into the recording of  ‘Light My Fire’, “I had been performing the song in coffee houses and when it came time to record my producer Rick Jarrard said I should record ‘Light My Fire’.  I scoffed at the idea saying it’s already a hit by The Doors so what’s the point. Rick said Jose please oblige me, which I did and the rest is history. The song was actually the B side of the single ‘California Dreaming’. Then one day a disc jockey in Seattle flipped it over and ‘Light My Fire’ took off.  “Speaking of  that  record” , Jose added,  “I just saw online that they picked the Top Ten covers of rock tunes and I was #1 with California Dreaming!”



There is nothing more aggravating to a DJ than to get 5 or 6 phone calls in a row for the same song.  It is very tempting to tell all your family and friends to call your local radio station and request your song to be played.  It is also very transparent when this happens.  


Most of the time when they call in, they are not even tuned in.  I can't begin to tell you how many times a request came in for a song that I was currently playing or had played the song prior.  This doesn't go over very well with the DJ who knows first hand the caller is not even tuned in to his show.  


The proper way to get your song played on a radio station is to hire a radio promoter.  This person will call the music director or program director on an assigned day and time to discuss your record.  The promoter may or may not get the PD or MD to agree to play your song but this is the right way to do it.  


The other way, getting your family and friends to call and bug the radio station is the sure fire way to get your record thrown in the trash.  


The Music Business, YA GOTTA LUV IT.


Keith Bradford

Day 2 Déjà Vu-Let Lady Liberty Rule!

D2DV bringing' it live.

Story:Lenny Stoute


It used to be that a genre-bending act was described as a little bit country, a little bit rock’n’roll. These times, it’s more like a little bit pop, a little bit punk’n’roll. Which brings us to Day 2 Deja Vu, a trio out of darkest suburbia or Newmarket, which epitomises the state of rock’n’roll, a struggle for street cred and commercial success.


It makes historical sense they be coming out of the ‘burbs, traditionally the spawning ground for rock music. From the Stones through The Ramones to Kurt Cobain they all cooked their shit in the burbs before bringing it downtown. 


And how much more classic rock’n’roll can you get than a band formed by two dudes working in a music store. 


Sean MacLean is the bassist and deep-voiced singer with the band and on this particular day, its mouthpiece. The point’s worth making as D2DV is a democratic institution, being that all three members write the songs, there are two lead singers and all three harmonize. 


“This is not the first band I’ve been in but it’s one that lasted long enough for me to believe it could go places. We’ve been together around five years, going through the mechanics of a young band, learning each others’ dynamics and going through all the necessary stylistic changes before arriving at the sound we now have”



It seems like every time I have ever played on a recording session there is always a bunch of extra people hanging around.  Most of the time I don't even know who they are.  These folks may have been invited by the artist we are recording, they may be the financial backer of the session, a door to door salesman, or someone stopping by to sample the free pizza.  The point is, you don't know who these extra people are unless you stick your hand out and introduce yourself and ask them what they do for a living.  


Many years ago while recording a few demos in Rhode Island (my home state) I noticed an elderly gentleman sitting in the corner.  He was not what you would call the model or movie star type in appearance but for some reason I approached him and we struck up a conversation.  He was reading a copy of the New York Times.  He showed me an advertisement for auditions being held in NY for a theme park in Nashville, TN called OPRYLAND.  It would take far more space than we have here to explain what took place between this man and my career but the bottom line is with his encouragement I auditioned and got the job which I was re-hired for a total of 4 seasons before moving on to other interests.  

Colin Hunter-Timeless and True

Cover Nov 12, 2010

 Story: Sandy Graham


Timeless might be the title of the CD, but it is what truly describes Colin Hunter. His effortless way of performing, soft spoken way of telling you of his passion for singing and thoughtful way of looking at his life. Born in Bombay, India, when Cashbox asked how he ended up in Canada, Hunter explains, “I went to the UK for my parents because my Dad had a heart attack and the family needed another wage earner.


“I immigrated to Canada firstly because my brother had preceded me and liked it, secondly because there was a absolutely stunning lady residing in the apartment building he lived in (I later married and am still married to her). Lastly, I had reached a senior level at British Airways and did not see any future advancement that would or could stimulate my dreams. My parents stayed in the UK.  It really sounds like a song title!” 


“Additionally, an interesting fact is I landed in Toronto on July 26 1970 and 35 years later on July 26 2005 I recorded my first CD "Come Fly With Me" to coincide with the launch of Sunwing Airlines in Nov 2005” Hunter says in his own subtle way.  

Tim Bovaconti- Right Here. Right Now. In Song

Tim Bovaconti 2

Story:Lenny Stoute


PHOTO: Bovaconti bringing it vocally...

Credit:Anthony Tooton


 In the background I can hear a hound baying; on the line is a genuine rock’n’roll road dawg. Meet Tim Bovaconti, 21st century musician as mercenary in the service of pop music. 

What’s it take to qualify? For Bovaconti, this means 4 or 5 gigs in the average week and a minimum 200 gigs a year. He keeps busy on the road as guitarist with Classic rockers Burton Cummings and Randy Bachman (as a member of Bachman-Cummings as well as lead guitarist in Burton Cummings’ band) and recently recorded lead guitars and lap steel in Los Angeles with Burton for his album “Above the Ground”. 


Then there are the frequent tours of 10 years standing with Ron Sexsmith, including a recently concluded European jaunt, and an ongoing series of shows with comic Sean Cullen.



Terry Sumsion

Terry Sumsion is a man at peace with himself, with his world and especially with his music.  As he continues to work on his new CD, scheduled soon for release, he has surrounded himself with the best of both worlds – or perhaps we should say that both worlds have surrounded him.   


Terry refers to those who have rallied around him as his “Angels” – all very special people helping him fight a winning battle, each in their own way.   Musicians, singers, songwriters and technicians who have joined with him to create a work that this writer feels is the best he has ever produced.


The CD (Terry Sumsion – Encore) will have something for everyone and as the first single “You Gotta Believe” showed, it will be an emotional journey for the listener as many of the songs have been inspired by Terry’s real-life battle with cancer.


The Walls Have Crumbled


Once upon a time there was an annual Country Music event held in Nashville, Tennessee called Fan Fair.  It is now called CMA Music Fest.  Another very large event that was once called Canadian Country Music Week is now called, Canadian Music Week.  Both extravaganzas had to change their names in order to tear down the wall of Country Music verses all genres.  


The days of saying that a Country song is based on the overall production are over.  Rock songs are sounding a bit Country and Country songs are sounding a lot like Rock and in between there is still this music called POP where both of the genres mentioned show up.  

Everyone is scrambling for a hit song.  Notice I didn't say Country song or Rock song, I said a hit song.  The industry calls all this progress. The only part about all of this that I don't understand is why are there so many different music charts?  If the song is not Country, and it's not Rock, and it's not Pop, then what is it?  Hopefully a hit is what the record label wishes for.  

The Music Business, Ya Gotta Luv It.


Keith Bradford


Between The Crosses Row on Row

Cover Nov 5, 2010

Story: Don Graham 


Setting aside the U.S. Civil War and WW 1, each of which had their share of songs that told the story of their generations, it wasn’t until WW 11 and the popularity of the old tube radio, that the music of the war reached the masses in great numbers. By 1940 over 95% of households in the northeast section of the U.S. and about 50% of homes in the south, all had radios.


Some of the music from WW 11 was obvious in its content and some were songs that expressed the sentiment of the day in such a way that they became classic love songs decades after the war was over. The obvious ones were the likes of Spike Jones’ “In the Furher’s Face” and Johnny Mercer’s “G.I. Blues” and The Andrew Sisters “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy”. 


Conjure up any of those three songs and in your minds eye you will see people dressed in forties style clothing, crisply pressed army dress and a vivid impression of the Sisters Andrew in their WAC uniforms rhythmically snapping their fingers and swaying as they sing “the boogie woogie bugle boy of company B.”


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