What is this?
It’s how I communicate with you*.
*the “royal” you.1
When I started making my original work over a decade ago, I played tiny shows to get started. Every contact was personal, I would try to find the most intimate venues well-suited to my particular way of playing. I was ever-so-precious about it: I like the sound of headroom and I like to play quiet.
But just about every talent buyer in those small clubs would say (or at least imply) that “the more people drink during your set, the more you'll get paid, so make sure you fill our place with people who like to drink." Pretty soon I started to question my choices.
"Of course!" I thought, "That's why I wrote these songs to begin with, to sell beer." Not.
And did I get a cut of those beer sales?
I managed to sell quite a bit of other people’s beer to enthusiastic drinkers, but it got old because I don’t drink.
I’ve played all over the country: St. Louis, Little Rock, Rosenberry, Charleston, Harrisburg, LA, SF, Chicago, Austin, Jackson, NYC, Easton, Vicksburg, Williamsburg, Williamsport, Ithaca, Boone, Marion, Ypsilanti, Keene, plenty of places in the UK, Europe, Asia and South America… the list goes on.
And the heart of rock n roll is still beatin’. But these days my main channel of expression is no longer the endless touring circuit. I like communicating on this platform and in person. I tour more intentionally now, albeit less often. (It’s happening now for the first time in a while.)
Meanwhile, thank you for being a part of this,
While you may already know and enjoy Trevor’s work, you might also have friends who don't know about it yet. And that gives you your edge – you know how to find the good, lesser-known stuff.
So feel free to send one of my emails or episodes to someone you think might like it.
And Thank you!
“Wait, wasn’t this your podcast feed?”
Yes, and it still is! The show is currently on hiatus and might come back if there’s sufficient audience demand:
"Play It Like It's Music" is a podcast (currently on indefinite hiatus) where professional musicians talk shop and craft. Since we have yet to find the show we really want to hear, this is our own attempt at making one. You can browse all 80 episodes if you scroll back in the feed.
Some might say (trying to be helpful) that capital “M” music has seen its peak. Purists whine that the best days of music are past us, decrying a scene that's undergone too many mechanical evolutions, stylistic recombinations or cultural bastardizations to even be heard under the spark and pop of the digital age.
It’s tough to make a living too, so some folks on the outside see no point in trying.
But here at Play It Like It's Music we believe the opposite. Not only is the act of musicmaking an essential life skill with a human lineage stretching back to the beginnings of history, but the artform, medium and vocation of the professional musician is more vital today than it ever has been.
Musician, songwriter and producer Trevor Exter has recorded 80 visits to a rich variety of working musicians from every genre. If you love to play, yearn to play or just want to experience what a musical life feels like from the inside, this is the show for you.
Here’s my pitch: you need this in your life.
People who play, this show is for you! We're all contending with a mutating professional landscape, jacked revenue streams and a lot of noise out there in the culture.
But you gotta keep playing.
It’s also for you if you are a listener, a peek backstage.
These are exciting times. It's almost as if the simple act of playing an instrument is a revolutionary one.
We don't draw any lines here between scenes or styles, so join the mailing list if you haven't done it already.
Be the tastemaker.
It’s here AND it’s in your podcast player:
Apple Podcasts - Spotify- Stitcher - TuneIn - Overcast - Pocketcast
Every town in America has its own local music scene, regional stars and underground sparks. Some scenes I know well and love, others I have yet to know but I love them in advance.
So my show is "sponsored" by a deep love of the art and craft of music. Yours should be too.
Smash that subscribe button..
I am this guy: trevorexter.com
I’ll never rent out or share your information.
To find out more about the company that provides the tech for this, visit Substack.com.
as in Y’all