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"We form relationships with people who are flawed all the time. Flaws, imperfection, and worse are all part of the human condition. Tools that embody them resonate. It’s hard to engineer this, though, but it’s worth cherishing when you have it. Don’t be so eager to iron out all the flaws. Maybe those flaws are exactly why people love your product." — Worse Is Human 

According to Seth Godin, you don’t need to like new art, but it helps to understand it …

When (part of) your marketplace embraces a ‘new’ that makes no sense to you, it’s essential you understand the point of view that’s leading people to embrace this new idea. No, you don’t have to cheer it on, collect it, support it or pretend you think it’s the greatest breakthrough ever. But yes, you probably need to understand why other people were touched, inspired or found something worth talking about.

Can you explain to me why some people wait in line for that car or that new restaurant? Do you understand why this person is being talked about online or promoted at work? Does it make sense to you that this canvas sells for five times as much as that one?

Denigrating art you don’t understand doesn’t hurt the art—it reveals something about your willingness to learn. - More via Seth Godin

THENEWPRINT: Excellent Advice From Female Music Entrepreneurs

Ariel Hyatt (author and founder of @CyberPR) put together an excellent article with the best advice from 51 female music entrepreneurs. I’ve highlighted only five below, so be sure to check out the full article on MusicThinkTank

1. “Your reputation and actions will say more about you than you ever can. Develop authentic working relationships with people and they will remember and respect you. Be confident without arrogance, be knowledgeable but open to learning, be steadfast in your goal but open to change. Ultimately, create a network of people who know who you are and like who they know. - Rynda Laurel (Founder & CEO, 1968media) @rynda

2. “My piece of advice is to remember that as much as everything is constantly changing, it is so important to remember the fundamentals. Technology changes, but people don’t, and the underlying psychology of what motivates people to engage with you and your music, remains constant. Make great music that makes people feel something. Find your people. The rest comes after.” - Alicia Yaffe (CEO, The Spellbound Group) @thespllbndgroup

3. “Be yourself and have confidence in your own individual talents. The combination of simplicity, flexibility and understanding will keep you growing and through the exchange of perspectives with others you come in contact with, your own creativity will flourish and help realize your own goals.” -Miho Nomura (President, Musikkverden Ent.Producer/Composer)

4. “Always remember why you got into the music business in the first place. It’s about expressing yourself and speaking from the heart and hopefully touching someone else’s heart. It’s the dance of the soul. When it stops being that, and thing aren’t happening for you, go back to that truth. No matter what ultimately happens, you will be happier if you stay true to yourself.”Gail Vareilles (President of Sandshifter Music, Inc.) @gailvar

5. “Shine a light on others as much as you possibly can. Ask how can I help instead of how can others help me, and watch the magic that will unfold.” - Ariel Hyatt (Author & Founder of Cyber PR) @CyberPR 

Hasan Salaam - A Moment of Clarity (#ThinkDifferently)

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I am human.

I have many faults.

I am not religious nor do I consider myself to make religious music.

I have a deep spiritual idea to be the best man I possibly can. I am not dogmatic. I study all I can & find truth in many walks of life. I see Allah/God/Yahweh in all things. To limit yourself is to limit the most high. This is soul music because it comes from every ounce of my mind, heart & soul…. It’s for all people regardless of how we choose to label or not label ourselves.

It’s good to have faith in something, whether it be a higher power or yourself. Beliefs are good as long as you respect others rights to have their own. You shouldn’t need me to agree with your beliefs to justify them. Your faith should not be based on crushing others. So for all the religious zealots criticizing and critiquing every word and movement I say this:

While yall are debating and going to war over 1,000 year old books; we are building schools, wells & clinics. While you are judging people, we are engaged in conversations to learn from each others mistakes and triumphs, and while you are busy lip professing we show, prove & live our ideals everyday. Whether it be Atheist, Agnostic, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Yoruba, or Self proclaimed, if it makes you a better person for yourself, your family and for humanity all I could say is PEACE.

Walk on Water,

-Hasan Salaam

Think Differently: Seth Godin - How You See Yourself

'Your audacious life goals are fabulous. We're proud of you for having them. But it's possible that those goals are designed to distract you from the thing that's really frightening you - the shift in daily habits that would mean a re-invention of how you see yourself.' - Seth Godin

Think Differently: Pharoahe Monch - Be Indispensable

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'I don't move creatively unless I get that inclination to really be inspired. I'm not one of these dudes that's gonna do a freestyle a week for a blog, ya know? I'm not even tryin to play that game … but, we are trying to give you something unique visually, and every time there is something, you’ll be like, “That shit was pretty good!” *laughs* It has to be above the standard, because otherwise I think Pharoahe becomes disposable, because music is disposable right now! You erase it off your computer, download it - its not even a tangible thing anymore, so for me to put out high levels of freestyles a week, it becomes something that’s disposable, because then you expect it from me.’ - (Still True) Excerpt from ‘09 Interview with Pharoahe Monch by Sav One.

Think Differently: Hasan Salaam - It Takes A Village

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The concept behind Hasan Salaam’s EP “Music Is My Weapon” is the belief that music can be used as a powerful tool in the pursuit of freedom, justice, and equality. With the release of the project, Hasan is aiming to prove that music can change people’s lives, literally. All profits from the sale of the EP will be used to fund a school, clean water well, and medical clinic in Guinea-Bissau, West Africa. In November 2010, Hasan became the first U.S hip hop artist to ever perform in Bissau. On the same trip he worked with the young artists, taught creative writing to the youth, and headlined a concert to promote freedom of speech. The “Music Is My Weapon” project is the next step, in an effort to provide change to a country that remains one of the poorest and least politically stable in the world.

Clean drinking water, a proper education, and adequate healthcare are basic human needs that many countries continue to struggle with. Guinea-Bissau is a small, and often forgotten, West African nation that exemplifies this dire situation. Only 56% of its population has access to clean drinking water. The youth remain part of a cycle that leaves 47% of them without the opportunity to attend primary school. The 1.5 million citizens share access to the country’s approximately 45 doctors, leaving them with an average life expectancy of 48 years.

The remote village of Djati suffers even greater extremes due to its 160 mile distance from the capital city of Bissau. Djati has no source of water, school for its children, or medical facility. Young women and children walk 2-3 miles per day getting water, which is often contaminated, to bring back to the village. The youth utilize a makeshift school made of sticks and hay that they must rebuild every year after it’s destroyed by the rainy season. Djati has no medical clinic, so the sick must be transported 35 miles away to the village of Quebo before they can be treated.

Djati is the land that time forgot. This project can change that…

100% of the profits from the “Music Is My Weapon" project goes to the “It Takes a Village” Project. For additional information, please check out HasanSalaamMusic.com and visit iTunes to purchase a copy of the EP. If you have any questions, please email me at: DJ.Sav.One@Gmail.Com

THENEWPRINT: Think Differently: Homeboy Sandman

My train campaign put me on the map in a major way, in a short amount of time. Basically I was like, “I’m nice, but nobody knows it. How can I get people to know it, and on a budget?" I bought the domain name homeboysandman.com from godaddy, threw up some joints. Not even too many bells and whistles, ‘cause the truth is that my music speaks for itself.

I’m always riding trains where you can always find people just looking up and reading all the ads. So, I figured I’d put up some ads!

Of course, I couldn’t afford the zillions that companies pay to put up those full-car ad campaigns, but I did have enough scratch for colored paper from Staples. My pop has a copy machine in his office…all it took after that was tens, possibly hundreds, of hours taking this full page sheets & sliding them behind the plastic where the MTA ads go.

The first ads were very simple - they’d have the website, and then a legendary MC that would approve of how I get down. Like, “HomeboySandman.com, Black Thought would approve,” or another, “HomeboySandman.com, Big Pun would be proud.”

And we’d do entire trains, car by car; we hit every line in the city, most lines multiple times. At first, people were caught off the jump just from the colorful paper everywhere, but then the caliber of emcees I was shouting out, cats in the know were like, “this kid thinks he’s in the same league with these cats? Maybe I should check him out.” … Tens of thousands of people saw those ads. They worked like a charm.

-From an Interview I did with Homeboy Sandman in ‘09.

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