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B.D. Lenz Articles

MIND YOUR BUSINESS

Pt. 5, Digital Drink Coasters?

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In the previous installment of this column, I discussed the undertaking of making a record on your own. In particular, how to fund it and how best to spend those funds. Now it's time to talk about what happens once those boxes of CDs have arrived and are cluttering up your basement... Now what? How do you sell these things or will they just become expensive digital drink coasters?Well this is the eternal question and there's no simple ...

MIND YOUR BUSINESS

Pt. 4, Making Your "Kind of Pepper"

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In this DIY age we find ourselves in an unprecedented situation, where releasing recorded music to the world is available to anyone with a computer and an internet connection. The gatekeepers who have traditionally chosen what the public ought to hear have found a gate that's become really large. That, along with the decline of record sales, means there aren't as many labels in existence and the ones that are rarely take chances on new artists. But, this change in ...

MIND YOUR BUSINESS

Pt. 3, Brick Walls And Railroad Tracks

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I wish someone had warned me about the two biggest press kit photo clichés before I perpetrated both. These are either getting your picture in front of a brick wall or next to railroad tracks. They're easily the most overused backdrops in all band press kits and, like every other offender, I believed I looked thoughtful and profound when in fact I looked like a transient waiting for the 5:30 express. I've seen others where a guy is holding his ...

MIND YOUR BUSINESS

Pt. 2, Booking 101

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“Hi, [insert club name] my name is [insert your name] and my band is amazing. Please book us on [insert date] and pay us [mucho $$]." If it were only that easy. Throughout the years, I've learned that booking gigs is often as exasperating an endeavor as listening to the Kenny G Christmas album. It requires specific strategies depending on the type of gig you're booking (i.e. club vs. festival vs. private event). Previously, I talked about ...

MIND YOUR BUSINESS

Pt. 1, Ashley’s Graduation Party

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Who is B.D. Lenz and why does he get a column in All About Jazz? The answer to the first question is that I'm a jazz guitarist/bandleader based out of the northern New Jersey area. The answer to the second question is because I asked. I've been leading my own band since I graduated from college in 1995 and, during that time, have released ten CDs (six independently) of my original music, have had my songs ...

TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five with B.D. Lenz

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About B.D. Lenz: Mix the sophistication of jazz, the grit of blues, and the grooves of funk and soul, and you have the recipe for contempo-jazz guitarist B.D. Lenz. The New Jersey native has played guitar since his early teens, is a graduate of Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, and has studied with such masters as Mike Stern, Vic Juris, and Charlie Banacos along the way. Lenz has released 9 highly-acclaimed recordings as a leader featuring greats such ...

INTERVIEWS

B.D. Lenz: Finding His Own Voice

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B.D. Lenz began his musical journey at 14, when he was first inspired to learn to play the guitar. Since then, he has gone on to study with such jazz luminaries as guitarists Mike Stern and Vic Juris and pianist Charlie Banacos. After graduating from the Musician's Institute in Hollywood, California, Lenz finished his formal musical education at the College of New Jersey, where he graduated with honors. Though he finished his scholarly studies years ago, Lenz has furthered his ...

TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five With B.D. Lenz

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Instrument(s): Grew up playing saxophone, but now only play guitar.

Teachers and/or influences? I'm influenced by so many different styles of music from Stravinsky, to Miles, to U2, to Squarepusher, to Rush. Of course there were many guitar players who have directly influenced my own playing/writing, namely, Pat Metheny, Mike Stern, John Scofield, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Jimi Hendrix, and Joe Satriani, to name a few.

I knew I wanted to be a musician when... ...