Throughout my 30-plus years of career as a sound engineer, I never had to book a musician for a gig. The concept of booking an artist is quite a foreign process to me as I only dealt with musicians from the technical side. But now as I find myself with a small business that mandates I get in touch with the talent, I find myself learning an exorbitant amount of knowledge regarding the art of booking a musician for a gig. In all honesty, I never really considered Singacoustic as an average gig but rather, a tool of empowerment for art that in my opinion needs acknowledgment and respect. Singer-songwriters are a special kind of musician, as not every musician is a singer-songwriter but every singer-songwriter is a musician.
I had no idea what to expect when I reached out to Tom Rhodes to be part of the Singacoustic Oakland show. I have been listening to his music for a few days and I was pretty impressed by his strong voice and guitar-playing style. I listened to Tom as a solo artist with just him and his guitar and listen to him as a frontman in his band and let me tell you, Tom Rhodes’s voice will hit in the heart so deeply that you actually feel his voice. Holly crap, that dude can sing.
I sent Tom an email in October asking him to be part of Singacoustic Bay Area and he politely responded that he was unavailable that day. When the time came to make arrangements for Singacoustic Oakland, I sent him another email and his response was absolutely brilliant. Tom Rhodes replied, “Let’s fucking go, I’m in”.
I called Tom to talk about the show and he told me about a series of videos he made over the course of many years and published on YouTube called “Welcome to my apartment” where he invites singer-songwriters to his apartment and they collaborate on a song. I spent many hours one night watching and listening to the list of videos of him and his guest singer-songwriters collaborating with one another. Hey Tom Rhodes, you did an amazing job in the production of it. Thank you! After many years, Tom moved out of his apartment and ended the production.
As the production of the show progresses, I sent an email to all three artists, Emily Zisman, Erik Yates, and Tom Rhodes as an introduction and to thank them for their generosity in accepting my request for their performance and the replies to my email were very encouraging that we’re going to have a great show. Emily responded that she knows Erik Yates from a singer-songwriter group they both attend (Go to Emily Zisman Blog). Tom replied that he knows Erik and in a phone call I had with Erik Yates (he was the last to accept my request for his performance) he informed me that he knows Tom Rhodes and that they collaborated before.
Following the emails back and forth between all three artists, it became evident that collaboration between them was going to happen. Tom requested to play a tune with Emily and Erik and they did. They played a song written by Tom in collaboration with Erik and Emily joined in with her sweet vocals and it was a hit. The song was written about a story about a real-life event that Tom Rhodes had experienced about a cardiac surgeon saving the lives of two runners in a marathon. It is an amazing story and the song is called “Over The Finish Line”
It was an absolute pleasure having Tom Rhodes as a part of Singacoustic Oakland. Thank you Tom for your music and your professionalism. You sir are a rock star. Cheers!