“When The Going Gets Tough…”

Posted by Dave

Gen. George S. Patton used to say, “When in doubt – ATTACK!”

Closer to home (and to my chosen career) Country Music host Johnnie High told me 15 years ago, “When making a change, UPGRADE!” My band at that time had been a 5-piece group in which everybody sang, allowing us to have some of the hippest harmonies in town. When we lost one of our 2 female vocalists, Johnnie gave me advice that I heeded. Since we still had 4 good singers, I added 2 horns – a sax and trumpet. Suddenly, we were much more than just a vocal band. We had an instrumental fullness that was entirely new (and very marketable.)

But now, it is time for more changes. Wall Street may have recouped its recent financial losses, but the party business – like many others – has not experienced a similar recovery. A number of good bands, including two that I recommended often, have folded. So, how are we surviving? By attacking and upgrading, of course!

While other groups are re-trenching, we have expanded our variety band to include a 9-member option, the biggest group I’ve ever worked with. Because of the current popularity of Swing dance music, we’ve also begun promoting “The Swing Set,” our Jitterbug-Push ensemble. For Baby Boomers like me who treasure the music of those “glory days,” our “Classix Gold” show and dance unit spotlights the music of the 60s and 70s. We’re even upgrading our venerable Country incarnation. Because there are so many C&W groups around, we’ve chosen to focus on Texas music, and thus also include Buddy Holly with our George Strait hits.

I’m happy to report that these changes are being well received, by dancers and party professionals alike (some of whom probably thought we were overdue for a make-over.)

So, if your business, special event, or worthy organization is still lagging behind your goals during these sluggish economic times, let me suggest that you too heed Johnnie High and George Patton’s advice. If nothing else, it will help you stand out from the crowd.

It’s also good to remember another of Gen. Patton’s maxims for success: “Lead, follow, or get out of the way!”


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