Write About What You Know

As the story goes, a Halifax band called Sons of Maxwell had a week-long tour of Nebraska last year.  They flew United Airlines for a quick turn-around in Chicago and were sitting on the plane when another passenger (who didn’t know they were musicians) yelled out that they were “throwing guitars outside”.

With a sick feeling in the pit of their stomachs, the band members looked out the airplane windows to see United employees throwing a bass guitar, which they recognized as theirs.  At the end of the flight and once they had claimed their baggage, they noted that a $3500 Taylor guitar had been badly damaged.

Dave Carroll, the prime songwriter for the group, tried a number of times over a nine month period to get some kind of compensation for the damage, but his cries fell on deaf ears.  Finally, he asked himself what Michael Moore might do if he were a musician in the same situation.  What he came up with were three songs, one called “United Breaks Guitars”.  His plan was to produce videos for each one and post them on YouTube, one after the other.  The YouTube video for “United Breaks Guitars” received over 15,000 hits after only a couple of days, and finally caught the attention of United Airlines who are now ready to compensate.

Well, duh.

So, folks…the key to success is to write about what you know 🙂  Success may be fleeting, but these guys could turn all of that attention (I just saw their story show up on CNN!) into all kinds of positive things like new gigs and CD sales.  Way to go!


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