The Sunday afternoon jam at the Grand Ole Echo. With its supportive, close-knit roots music community, L.A. is one of the most exciting cities for a young singer-songwriter to live in, but it’s not easy. Being in the backyard of the nation’s entertainment industry means there are hundreds of options for music, art, and entertainment on any given night, so an emerging songwriter is bound to feel lost and anonymous during the early stages of their career. But there are plenty of upsides to having so much of the music industry nearby. For one thing, you always might be playing for someone who can change your life. That’s what happened when Lissie moved to Los Angeles in 2004 to make it as a singer-songwriter.The young singer ended up meeting her manager, and landing a record deal, after getting noticed at one of her first ever gigs in the city. “When I moved to L.A., I didn’t have a clue, I just thought I was going to get a record deal. I never viewed it as a long-shot, so by thinking that getting a record deal was an easy thing that could happen I just manifested scenarios where I was in front of people who could help me,” says Lissie, who landed her first show after walking to the back office of the Irish bar Molly Malone’s and insisting on performing a song in-person for the booker. For L.A. country singer Sam Outlaw, he had a much easier time getting gigs once he began to show promoters and bookers a five-minute mini-documentary about himself. “Just having something like that signaled to other people that you take yourself seriously,” he says. “There’s nothing better than video for telling your story and creating an aesthetic.” Others, like Aaron Kyle, who performs around town as Geronimo Getty, say that just... Sign In to Keep Reading
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