Crowd Control Q&A | Greg Schroeder
1. As someone who has been playing music for close to two decades, how have you had to adapt to an ever-changing market?
Over the years I think the biggest change has to do with online presence and how now everything happens online. We’ve moved from CDs to MP3 to streaming back to vinyl. Moved from a time people had no problem with and expected to pay a cover charge to see live music to a time now where it feels like most people expect music to be free. So you have to adapt and change or you don’t stick around. The idea is to keep up with trends and read as much as you can on where the industry is projected to move and try to be there when it does. I don’t mean trends musically but on the business end. Hopefully at some point you have someone helping you with that otherwise as an independent artist it’s just one more thing you have to do.
2. Has your approach to songwriting changed over time? What are some tricks you’ve learned to keep the creative juices flowing?
I don’t know if it’s really changed. I don’t really have one way of writing songs. Most of the time the melody comes first and the words fall out later as I bang out chords on a guitar. One way to keep the creative juices flowing is to listen to music outside of your particular style or genre, read and read great writers, there is no better way to see how to put language together. Finally, shut up and listen. Listen to the sounds around you and the conversations.
3. You recently starred in the independent film This World Won’t Break, which made its world premiere at the Dallas International Film Festival last month. What were some of the challenges of transitioning creatively from music to film?
The biggest challenge was understanding the day to day process and the filming process in general. Once that became comfortable I was able to relax. Even though I’m a musician, I’m still a performer when it comes to playing on stage. So you just put yourself in that state of mind and you live it. With that being said I was and am extremely self conscious of the performance, but proud at the same time.
4. Do you have any big projects planned after completing This World Won’t Break?
I’m planning on running for president. Besides that, I’m hoping to put a collection of songs together that I like and working on a new record. I’ve got some songs sitting around, but at this point they aren’t really allowed to leave the house
5. Everyone wants to be a musician until things get difficult or stressful. What would your advice be to fellow musicians struggling with self-doubt?
I don’t know if self-doubts ever go away. I don’t know if the struggle goes away. I do know that it’s something you have to do and not just something you want to do. I’m an insufferable pain in the ass if I go too long without playing a show or trying to create something. I get depressed and irritable. So I guess my only advice is to ask what does it all mean to you?
6. Many people often express mixed feelings about Dallas – usually a sort of love-hate relationship. What are some of your favorite and least favorite things about this city, and what keeps you here?
I love the people I’ve met here in Dallas, especially those in the music scene. I’m often in awe of the talent this city has in the music scene and all of the arts. The two things that bug me most is how under appreciated these artists are by most of city, and how Dallas tears down its history to replace it with some soulless, shiny new thing. Progress is not a strip center with an apartment building sitting on top.