About Art Menius

About Art Menius Art Menius received both the B.A. (1977 with honors) and M.A. (1982) in history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Following three and one-half years as an Interpretations Specialist for research at the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, Menius entered the music field as a writer and production assistant for the Nashville Network bluegrass and old-time music series, “Fire on the Mountain.” In September 1983 he began publishing reviews and features about roots music for publications ranging from Bluegrass Unlimited to the [Raleigh] News & Observer. Other adventures along the way have included editing and desktop publishing books for the Forest History Society, promoting a live performance bluegrass radio series on 117 commercial stations, emceeing and stage managing at dozens of music festivals in USA and Canada, and serving as a consultant on the acclaimed film, “High Lonesome.” During 1985 Menius helped create the International Bluegrass Music Association. Late that year he became the new trade association’s first executive director. Menius returned to IBMA’s Board of Directors for two terms running from 1998 through 2004. He served on the board of directors of the Old-Time Music Group, publishers of the Old-Time Herald, from 1991 thorough 1998, including six years as president. He currently serves on the board of directors of the Folk Alliance International. In 1990 the North American Folk Music & Dance Alliance elected Menius the President of its first board of directors. In April 1991 he became its first manager, serving in that capacity until June 1996. Following a period as an artistic representative, Menius became Associate Festival Coordinator for MerleFest, the enormous outdoor folk festival presented by Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, NC. Following a decade there, Menius served as Director of Appalshop, the acclaimed Appalachian media and arts center in Whitesburg, Kentucky from July 2007 until March 2010. On November 2, 2011, Menius completed his work as Director of Development for Common Ground on the Hill. From 2012 to 2014 he served as Executive Director of The ArtsCenter in Carrboro, NC before semi-retiring to freelance due to health issues.

My Profile of Greadons from The People’s Pharmacy


Appeared in the September 2018 edition of OutreachNC

Download Peoples Pharmacy OutreachNC Sept 2018

Outreach NC Sept 2018 pp 54-55Outreach NC Sept 2018 pp 56-57Outreach NC Sept 2018 pp 58-59

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New Article by Art Menius in July 2018 OutReach NC Magazine


 

Outreach July 2018 pp 38-39

Outreach July 2018 pp 40The July OutReach  NC magazine includes my essay on growing older in the music business with photos by Becky Johnson and Betty Friedrichsen on pages 38-40.
You can read the Issu online replica or download a PDF of the issue at http://bit.ly/Outreach7-18

 

Three Questions to Lead Us Away From Self-Extinction by David Korten — YES! Magazine


Some ideas hit us in a way that is hard to shake. Last year that happened to me. I was in a public conversation with my friend and colleague, theologian Matthew Fox, when he made this observation: “Humans might be the first species to knowingly choose self-extinction.”

http://www.yesmagazine.org/happiness/three-questions-to-lead-us-away-from-self-extinction-20180703

Crowdfunding: What I have Learned


Crowdfunding is engagement that builds a sense of community. Community engagement is as important as the money.

Your communications planning is the heart of that engagement.

Don’t underestimate the time commitment. A one-month campaign involves three months of work.

Pre-campaign promotion and commitments are essential to success

Average contribution is $50. Thus, if you want to raise $20,000, divide by 50 to see how many donors you need – 400 in this case.

Economics: of the money raised: 57% net revenue. You need to bring in $16,000 to clear $10,000

Personal asks by the artist are essential. We are coordinating the artist’s campaign. The artist is not just the face by the leader of the campaign. People want to support the artist, not the publicist.

Have a private opening two days before public campaign

Build a content timeline and plan the number of touches

Have at least one song completed before starting.

Think big. Upsell. Don’t underprice perks.

Track and cross check data from email lists, social media, donors, web store customers

Continue to incentivize throughout campaign, keep offering more perks

Use the lowest goal that works.

            High goal does not mean more money; it is the % of the goal that is most important

            Get 30% of the goal lined up before the campaign goes live. This comes from the inner layer of your community.

Pitch

            Answer who, what, why

            Tell the story in two minutes: 30 seconds to grab attention and 90 seconds for the meat

            Close with a strong call to action and expression of gratitude

            Break up text

Video

            Hand held, up close and personal works best

            Show what is going on behind the scenes

            Spend your money on promoting the campaign – not on video production

            Remember that people have short attention spans 2 to 3 minutes

            Show who you are

            Be energetic and to the point

Perks

            Do not use t-shirts

Promotion

            This is where to spend money

            Maintain  constant, stable tone across all platforms

            #1platform is email

            #2 is social media

            #3 is advertising

Curly Seckler, link to pre-WWII Country Music, dies at 98


Curly Seckler book Penny

Penny Parsons won an IBMA award for her collaborative biography of Seckler

Shortly after noon central time, Curly Seckler one of the last living links to pre-World War II southern music, died on December 27, 2017, two days after his 98th birthday. Curly began playing music professionally in 1935, more than a decade before he would become a bluegrass music pioneer. In 1938, Charlie Monroe hired him shortly after the Monroe Brothers’ streams diverged. Even before the 21st Century began, Curly had already played music professionally in seven decades.

Even when he was little older than I am now, he seemed to me of an early time, of music played in school houses, bars, and drive-in movie theaters. Like his friend Doc Tommy Scott, Wade Mainer, Aunt Samantha Bumgarner, Dellie Norton, Howard Armstrong, Norman Woodlief, or Joe and Odell Thompson. He could connect you to a time you’ll never know, in a place that hardly resembles what they knew.

Tennessean obituary for Curly Seckler (December 25, 2017)

Bluegrass Today obituary for Curly Seckler (December 25, 2017)