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Welcome to IndieVan

Dear Musicians and Music Fanatics,

Welcome to the first issue of IndieVan: A Vancouver music blog. Take a seat, get comfortable and make yourself at home. Always
feel free to ask questions, seek advice and comment. I would much prefer this be an ongoing dialogue than a lone pianist's solo.

I have a genuine interest in the diverse thoughts of those who stumble upon my work.

I am a recent graduate of Radio and Television from Ryerson University as well as a multi-instrumentalist. I have done lifestyle marketing
work in the music industry over the past few years; whenever I get a chance, I frequent music conferences and local concerts. Directly
after reading this article, you may also wish to read some of the blogs I admire, like Bob Lefsetz's Lefsetz Letter.

Yesterday I was offered a performance spot at the Vancouver Observer's October 6th relaunch party. I will update you regarding where this
celebration will be held as soon as I hear it myself. How does one come up with an appropriate set list without prior knowledge of audience demographics? Tunes by the Beatles are always a safe bet; "The Beatles: Rock Band" is a new release and Starbucks is selling Beatles reissues with new liner notes and photographs.

Or maybe I should dedicate my set towards saying goodbye to summer? Janis Joplin "Summertime" or The Beach Boys album "Pet Sounds" could do the job; Wilco's "Sky Blue Sky" is nice Autumn music. Perhaps it would be wisest to only bring myself and my melodica, slowly gauge audience tastes, and improvise.

I do not consider musical improvisation a technique, but rather a philosophy. It comes down to riding the musical wave. Like surfing on
a beach wave, you still want to use your head and plan a few seconds in advance in order to stay balanced, but ten seconds in the future is
truly a lifetime away; anything can happen. I am sure you know improvisation is not about acting right, but rather feeling and acting
on what is right in the moment.

Think about context and stylistic tangents but really let your instrument (truly an extension of your body) do the talking. In the middle of a jam in Nanaimo during the long weekend I was able to pound the keyboard with little accuracy, yet the output was exactly what I needed. Try improvising with your favourite song of the day playing in the background.

Please know that I will be attending as many local shows as I can and discussing what I hear. Write me/invite me if you want your local Vancouver band to get some coverage (serious offer): [email protected].


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Get On The IndieVan!

John Tanner

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