This blog is the first to accompany my new podcast The Side Barre, developed through Anchor & to be distributed across all major streaming platforms.
Listen now on Spotify
Listen now on Anchor
Now Open: The Side Barre
Before I really get this podcast underway I wanted to take a quick second to further explain a little bit about what this is all about and what you can expect to hear while you’re here.
Full disclosure, at no point while I was developing this website, any of my music projects, or the blog here on crookedforest.ca, did I ever have any real interest in also developing a podcast to accompany them. While I love listening to other peoples podcasts, the idea of developing my own seemed at minimum, overwhelming, and at best, gluttonous, given how many other things I was already taking on.
But when I started spending more time listening to other peoples podcasts, specifically artists I looked up to and admired and people in the industry who have in many ways set the course for the rest of us, the more I started to realize how much I really couldn’t relate to these people on the level I was looking for. Their experiences differed so greatly from mine that, although I could cherry pick small anecdotes here and there where I could find similarities, I in no way was hearing a voice that sounded in any way like my own.
And when I say my voice I don’t mean literally my voice, I mean my experiences as a woman working her way up in the Canadian music industry, starting much like many of my favourites by starting my first band rather young, but then making my own shift into professional recording studio work and the challenges that I again, faced there as a, for lack of better way of describing it, minority in the boys-club that was and in many ways still is, professional sound environments.
I can count on one hand how many other women graduated with me in the Audio Production & Engineering Program from Metalworks Institute when I attended back in 2008-2009, I was 18 years old when I started and still using a fake I.D to get into the local campus hangout, Cooper’s Pub.
And I can count on the other hand how many women from the programs live and business programs from the same time eventually made their way into stable, adequately paying jobs.
And then I still have a couple fingers left over for the seemingly random encounters I’d have otherwise, working for various studios or live music venues, where I’d meet the occasional woman who was still very much like me, trying to navigate these same waters and having some success but not enough to in any way boast about.
There are many others of course, who dropped out, quit, and turned their attention to other ventures instead over the years, and this is all too common.
In thinking about this as my introduction into the industry, which I’ll get into further in the coming podcasts, and in watching so many others try in their own ways to bring light to the all-too prevalent issues that make it difficult for anyone to “make it” in this industry, I’ve ultimately decided that there is definitely a void still missing from this space and it largely comes out of fear from being reprimanded or ridiculed; Fortunately at this stage in my own career, if you want to call it that, not to say I no longer have that fear, but I choose not to feed it so well.
Oftentimes when I see women try to bring others on board with similar podcasts or events, I see them having to do so in the name of anonymity and I think that’s one of the biggest hurdles we need to get across. It’s too late for anonymity, and nobody is going to take you seriously if you attempt it anymore; Nobody has the patience to weed out the trolls.
In saying all that, that’s how the idea for The Side Barre was born.
I always knew I’d want to dedicate time and space here on all of my platforms promoting and supporting other artists because that’s always something that I’ve done and always something that I’ve felt all artists should be doing. So building The Treehouse was easy and an obvious addition, but if what we’re missing is voices than what we needed is a place to hear them.
I think what makes a lot of people shy away from participating in these types of discussions is not feeling like the person they’re speaking to understands fundamentally the place they’re coming from. Of course I am not all these things to all people, but I know that the best way to learn about the world is through others lived and shared experiences.
It is my hope as The Side Barre grows that more people will be willing to jump on board, hop on the mic and talk openly about the things they’ve gone through, seen, heard, felt and perhaps most importantly, what changes they’d like to see being made to make this industry as a whole to create a more inclusive, inviting space where artists are both not afraid to share their art and not belittled for the art they choose to create, no matter its form.
Ultimately the point of The Side Barre is to start and continue conversations even if those begin from a turbulent place, so everyone is welcome to participate and if at any point you have something you’d like to share on the program, all you have to do is reach out to me after reviewing the submission requirements on the Treehouse page and I’ll get back to you to so that we can begin to facilitate it.
On the next episode I’ll share a little bit more about myself as your host so that you can get to know who I am a little better and then we’ll really get underway.
Nothing is off limits here and we’ll do our best to mind the swears but, sometimes there’s just no substitution for it.
Once again if you’d like to participate on the program, whether you’re an artist who wants to talk about your latest release or your recent shitty run-in with a record label, or if you’re just a music fan who wants to hear more about something in particular, the inbox is always open, just give me a couple days to get back to them. That e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks & see ya next time.