Creativity. The very heart and soul of an artist generally lays in the creativity that they possess. The creativity is a very fragile and delicate characteristic of an artist. Creativity can be influenced by many exterior and interior happenings or surroundings of an artist and it should be handled with great care.
Being a songwriter I understand and respect the creative process and all that it entails. For many artists the creative process is not only their God-given gift but it is also their most cherished attribute. For the professional artist, their creative process is their lifeline and meal ticket to success.
I would say that most artists derive a lot of their work from personal and life experiences. Every artist has a very personal attachment to his or her work, to some extent. Whether they are a painter, a poet, a musician, a songwriter, or an actor, and all that fall into the category of being an artist, they are all able to pull this gift together and display it proudly as if the work has the equivalency of a child of theirs. This also is often the reason why many artist may have a tough time parting from their work, in cases where this may be the instance. It is without a doubt that artists relate to their works in some form or fashion, and that their everyday lives play a big part in shaping their masterpieces.
It is interesting to watch the chronological evolution of an artist’s work. If you take notice to the timeline and evolution of an artist throughout their career it may very well be parallel to the happenings of that artist’s life. The songs that I write usually have an underline meaning or relation to something that I have been through or experienced. As I have grown, so have my songs. They have grown in mind, body, and spirit alike. They can almost tell the listener the story of my life. Having taken heed to the development of my writing skills is also something that I am proud of. Comparatively the songs that I wrote in my younger years are not as mature as some of my songs today. I have been through more life experiences and naturally write from a more mature perspective.
So as an artist, it is imperative to become aware of the growth of your craft and continuously be honing your skill. You should be able to look back and tell a story of your life with examples of your work.

Check out this great article:

This week for me personally has been interesting and exciting. As an artist myself, I realize and have taken heed to the shift of the music industry from the standpoint of my development as an artist. There is much more of an independence needed in today’s music business, not too many artists and groups rely on major labels to launch them into a career of success anymore. Artists can essentially become successful almost entirely on their own, and not be held captive to the binding contracts that major labels have artists sign their lives away to. The amount of information available, along with opportunities to a budding artist like myself now a days are almost endless. With help from websites like YouTube, CDbaby, Sonicbids, Pledge Music, Jango airplay,, Disc Makers and Zazzle, an independent or “Indie” artist can in essence run their entire music career on their own or with the help of a small self-created team.

There are so many different websites out there today that are in favor of the indie artist, the world-wide web is the new “must have” tool for an artist to have a shot at a successful music career.  These websites range in focus, but are all a very beneficial to indie artists and their careers. An artist cannot only get exposure and establish a fan base following online, but music can be sold, and distributed through these online sources, you can find gigs to perform at, get radio airplay on the web, find funding to help your act, and even sell and distribute merchandise of your respective brand. Business that was once handled by the major “Momma” record labels can now be done BY YOURSELF!

I have been doing a few things myself to help get some exposure to my act recently, and so far things are going in a positive direction. What these sites help do is give you a name. It would be wise for any developing artists and acts to certainly take advantage of the tools now available to the public.  DEVELOP YOURSELF!!! 

If you or someone you know is a developing artist that wants to do more with their career check out these websites:

Hello there world!

It’s me again, Grace-C!

In my last post I highlighted two very successful business people, and shared the advice that they have given on the importance of a well-developed business plan. Dave Lavinsky, and Oprah Winfrey both have an extensive business background, and one would be almost foolish to not heed their advice on the matter.

When writing my business plan I have absolutely taken some of the professional advice that I’ve discovered, to make sure that I develop the best business plan that I possibly can. Both Ms. Oprah Winfrey and Mr. Dave Lavinsky’s advice has been implemented into my personal business plan writing process.

The Oprah Winfrey given advice when it comes to creating a business plan was to make sure that you cover every single detail. She adamantly stresses the NO DETAIL SPARED method. Even the things that people may not think to include in an ordinary business plan, then include it. You can never go wrong for being too thorough when it comes to business planning. Every cost, every product, every employee, ect. needs to be thought about and planned accordingly for.

So in drafting my business plan for Grace Note Talent Development I make sure to try and think about every possible situation that may be in relation to my business venture. What types of situations may I face? How much money will it realistically cost to do certain things? What type of team do I need to develop to pull a project like this off? All of these thoughts should circulate when conjuring up a business idea and drafting the plan for it.

The advice given by Dave Lavinsky basically stated that there should be 4 components included in EVERY business plan model, and if included you will have a successfully developed plan. Those 4 pieces are: 1) A one-line summary of what your company does, 2) A Financial Model, 3) Risk Mitigation Milestones, and 4) Your unique qualifications for success (Lavinsky, 2011).
I have applied Mr. Lavinsky’s advice to my business plan writing process by making sure that my plan contains all of these components.  I have not yet included the Risk Mitigation Milestones but that is definitely something that I will make sure is included in my completed and final draft of the business plan.

For more information on successful business plan writing check out:

Thank you for reading! Until another post!


Hello World! It’s me, Grace-C again!

In this weeks blog posting I wanted to discuss the importance of a well-developed business plan. If you do not know, I am currently a graduate student working on my Master of Science degree in Entertainment Business at Full Sail University in Winter Park, FL. Since day one of my studies here at Full Sail University one of the main focuses of our intense degree program was our final business plan project. Every student that matriculates through this Entertainment Business Master of Science program, (or at Full Sail University better referenced as EBMS) upon graduation must develop, research, complete and pitch an entire business plan.

So in this post I wanted to dig deeper, research and find what some pros have to say. I want to highlight what they would advise when it comes to constructing or reading a business plan. The two industry experts in this field that I chose to cover are Dave Lavinsky and Oprah Winfrey.

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey is by far one of the world’s most successful businesspersons. Born in Mississippi and later moving to Tennessee, Winfrey began to pursue her interest in radio and television broadcast throughout her college experience at Tennessee State University. She soon went on to host her self-titled show, The Oprah Winfrey show, which has been the number one rated talk show for almost two decades. She is the first female, African-American billionaire and is very accomplished in many various avenues (Allen, 2011).

Her outlook on constructing a business plan is that “It forces you to consider the what-ifs and tiny costs you might overlook…and it will force you to see what you need to change to finally start making money with you business “(Brewster, 2007). This is a very critical point, because as you start you business you don’t want to just make a business plan to have one; but you actually need to utilize and monitor all of your progress. The business plan will become your road map throughout your entire business.

Dave Lavinsky
The next industry expert that I decided to highlight is Dave Lavinsky. Lavinsky is the founder and CEO of Growthink, which is a business planning and consulting organization devoted to helping the entrepreneurs of the world succeed (, 2011). He is a world-renowned expert in the business planning; venture development, and capital raising realms. He has developed hundreds of business plans, and has lectured at top universities around the nation sharing his advice and expertise. He has also written many numerous articles on the matters of business planning for the entrepreneur. He is the president at Growthink University, and resides now in New York with his wife and their two children (, 2011).

 His idea of creating a successful business plan is captured in an article that he wrote called Key Components of a Business Plan. In the article he goes on to discuss how there are four often overlooked components that could make of break the idea business plan. Those components are: 1) A one-line summary of what your company does, 2) A Financial Model, 3) Risk Mitigation Milestones, and 4) Your unique qualifications for success (Lavinsky, 2011). By making sure that these four sections are implemented, it will certainly allow for you business to thrive and optimize, and it will allow for investors to have a sense of reassurance for success toward your business plan.

If you are interested in learning more about how to write a successful business plan, there are some very helping resources online. Thank you for reading!


MEISA Banner
Hello World It's me again, GRACE-C!! 

Are you a musician or an artist in the Orlando Area? Are you constantly looking for other avenues and more venues to showcase your gift and talent? Are you a music executive or manager that is wondering where all the fresh, up and coming talent is at, around this area? Well, come on out to Open Mic Nights at Full Sail University. Hosted by Full Sail’s on campus chapter organization of MEISA (Music and Entertainment Industry Student Association), the child organization to MEIEA (Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association).

Full Sail’s MEISA hosts the event every third Thursday of the month. MEISA teams up with the University’s Show production, or “ShowPro”, students to bring together a state of the art, quality setting. The organization’s officers work very hard to make sure all who want to perform get a chance to perform.  The MEISA board runs a very smooth and successful show every month.

Obie and Lil Shawn Morning Show
Last Night MEISA had special guest hosts in the building. Obie and Lil Shawn, of the Obie and Lil Shawn Morning Show, which airs on Orlando’s Power 95.3FM radio station were great hosts and kept the crowd hype.  Many local artists and students of Full Sail University showed up and showed out. There were decent numbers in the crowd and the support was strong.
The artists that perform, range from all levels of experience, have so much talent, and cover a vast array of genres. Sean Lamar (Gospel/R&B), Ebonee’ (Hip-Hop), Jenna Christine (Country), Bobbie Ruffin (Soul/Jazz), Cali V (R&B), Clif Johnson (Instrumentalist), and myself, Grace-C (Pop) are among the regulars that you can catch at this event.

If you are interested in performing at an open mic night just come on out to the diesel bean cafĂ© located on Full Sail University’s campus, on the third Thursday. Sign up is usually from 5;30- 6:30pm the day of the show, and the show starts at 7:00pm. Take it from me, someone that has performed a few times at this event, it is an awesome place for local talent to get together, perform and network with one another. And in Orlando, a city chalk full of talent, there’s no telling who you might meet. 

Links and Sources:

There is no question that the queen of music right now, Beyonce, has been on top of her game for quite some time. It is also without question that with the release of her 4th solo studio album, fans and critiques alike were all filled with an overwhelming anticipation. On Tuesday, June 28th Beyonce’s album, entitled simply 4, hit the selves.  I, being the absolute fan of Beyonce that I am, could not let the day go by without making the purchase. I am for the most part, pleased.

I must say that this album is actually quite refreshing. I honestly feel that Beyonce put her own feelings, emotions and style into this album. She seems to have a very heartfelt sound, belting out some incredible notes with an undying passion, displaying her developed range and strength. This album shows her growth as a vocalist and woman. Beyonce is no longer the cute young girl that we first met in 1996, she is a grown woman, and this album is definitely fitting for her age (Beyonce turns 30 on September 4 of this year). You can really tell that she poured her entire heart into this album vocally, and her artistry absolutely shinned.

Beyonce alone is the executive producer of her entire album 4 (meaning she is getting paid!!!). She also co-wrote and co-produced a significant amount of the tracks on the album. She teamed up with some of the music industry’s top producers and writers, including: Shea Taylor, Frank Ocean, Terius “The Dream” Nash, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, and the legendary songwriter herself Ms. Diane Warren, to create amazing music. I think the collaborations worked really well producing sounds that were heavily reminiscent of earlier and classic eras, but still consisted of that modern Midas blend of soul and pop that Beyonce is known for.
 There were rumors that the album was not going to do very well in comparison to some of her past work. There were even speculations made that her label did not think that she would have a hit from the album 4.  But having been on the market for only two days critics are projecting that it will top the charts by the end of its first week of sells with a projected 300,000 albums sold. I hope it does well, she has worked very hard and is deserving of the success that has and will continue to come to her. Good Luck Bey!

You can check out Beyonce tonight at 7:30 pm on VH1. It will be the premier of a special entitled Beyonce: Year of the 4, promoting the new album.

Go buy the album!!! In stores, and on iTunes now!!!

Hugs, Luvs, and Blessings from Above!!!


Check out this awesome video of her live album release concert

Today we live in the world of the independent or “indie” artist. There are a lot of very successful indie record labels, putting out great work. I saw a quote that said this 2011 year, indie artists and labels hold about fifty percent of the Grammy nominations. It is very safe to say that a successful career in the music industry CAN be attained by either doing it yourself (D.I.Y) or by linking up with an independent label and becoming an independent artist. Once again, ladies and gentlemen, hence the reason why I have really been stressing the importance of taking every possible opportunity and chance to develop yourself!

This week’s blog I wanted to focus on some organizations and groups within my niche industry. I could not find the association that focuses on talent development, but the one in which I am about to talk about has a focus of independent record labels and artist. The group that I found is called the American Association of Independent Music or also known as A2IM. Their mission and goals are to provide business and networking opportunities for the independent sector of the music industry. They really are a sort of community support system and society for indie artists. They also provide advocacy and representation in the legal realms for indie labels and groups.
I think this is very important especially because I am an independent (D.I.Y.) artist myself, I see the need for this type of safe haven group to come to and be involved with like the American Association of Independent Music. I am glad to have discovered this group and will actually look into getting involved with it more. If you yourself are an indie artist, then this is definitely something to look at. Check them out here at
A2IM has different committees that its members can join to become more active in the actual business of music, aside from just their individual projects. They have the legislative/ legal committee, the licensing/ publishing committee that relays information and issues that happen within the independent music realm that may affect us all.  They are also are affiliated with a few different industry organizations and site such as SoundExchange, M.U.S.I.C., Music First, Copyright alliance, Give the gift of music, and Alliance of Artists and Recording Companies (AARC). They really have an extensive and helpful program and I encourage you to check them out.