All posts by Jan Landy

Ramblings of a Successful Entrepreneur & a not so Successful Comedian as well as, a man amongst men and women.

To write or not to write, Blogging is not my life.

I never realized how difficult it was to find the time and motivation to write a weekly blog.  I know that that it must be difficult, because I can’t seem to find the time or creativity to put one one out every week.   
As of this moment, or should I say when I designed the new and improved SoundBroker.com, I had a blog space and a podcast space built in.  I am so negligent in blogging that I probably have lost all my blog reading followers. To those faithful that have been waiting for my next blog, I highly recommend that you check out my Facebook page jan@soundbroker.com because although I don’t post everyday, I come pretty close.  Also there are my Tweeter accounts @JanLandy (personal) & @soundbroker.  
 
Most people that know me find me to personable enough and I find that I am always finding interesting and innovated concepts and both real world and technologically oriented which I post regularly. 

 
I was just reading a blog by Andy Inhatko where he mentions there is no such thing as writer’s block, there is only writing and not writing, I am going to do the best I can from here on in, to find the few minutes a day or week, to write.  Wish me luck.

Frustration With A Specialist

I went to my dermatologist for a follow up appointment. This was my third visit in less than 3 months. This time was only for the doctor to look at me to determine that I was cured. No tests, just a physical inspection of my skin to insure in her mind and to confirm in mine that I had healed completely.

I debated if I really needed to go back there, but the doctor staff when they called me insisted that the doctor needed to to confirm that I was healed. It appears that if the doctor doesn’t sign off that you are healed and you have a relapse, the insurance company will not cover your treatment again for that issue. Far be it for me to take that chance. The cost of medical treatment is expensive unless your are really rich, then it is just costly. To me it is expensive.

I personally believe that my particular doctor is really good at her specialty and is in the business of getting as much money out of you as possible and because of that she will do whatever it takes to keep you alive. It seems that a dead patient doesn’t generate any money for her and beside it is very hard to get a dead patent to keep their appointments.

It was with that money grabbing philosophy that I have my problem! This particular doctor charges $150.00 per visit if you don’t have insurance and just the copay if you do. Every time!!! Even though this is a follow up just to say “you are fine.” I that was all it was, it would still annoy me, but this particular doctor’s staff makes you pay in advance of seeing the doctor! Not only that, every time you have an office visit they hand you the same form to fill out. It is a questionnaire of sorts that asks you questions like, “Have you ever thought of getting Plastic Surgery? “What part of your anatomy would you change if you could?”.

But with out a doubt, the worst part of the whole ordeal is the wait! My question is why make an appointment for 9:10 in the morning if the doctor doesn’t see you until 10:10. And then it still isn’t that simple. First you wait in the waiting room until you feel you can’t wait another minute. The only part of that wait that makes it tolerable is that there are others that are waiting there too. And everyone has that stupid look on their face that shows their frustration as if to say “what am I doing here?” Of course it only makes matters worse if this is the first time you are there to see the doctor and your are not sure if whats bothering you is life threatening. Finally after you have thought about leaving twenty times, the nurse comes and gets you and brings you back to an exam room, where you wait even longer. That to me is the worst as you are in solitary confinement and as the time passes you start to feel that everyone including the doctor has forgotten you.

So now your waiting and the time is dragging and you start to wonder what is in the drawers and cabinets. Is there anything in there worth taking as to compensate you for the time you have waited? Unfortunately for me either I’m too honest, don’t have a need for medical supplies or I’m afraid to get busted by the doctor. Anyway in this case the just the thought is enough. Besides the jar of tongue despressers is inviting enough. Wouldn’t it have been funny if I tried them all and put them back in jar that I took then from? I didn’t. The doctor gave in just in time.

Brush With Death, I Chose Life

On Tuesday September 13, 2011 at ten minutes to 6, I was on my way to the gym to work out traveling on the 215 Las Vegas Beltway and the rain was coming down in typical dessert rainstorm fashion. I was in the middle lane doing 60 mph, when I looked to the right and there was driver in a car talking on cell his phone held up to his left ear that was not paying enough attention to the road and without looking, turned into my lane. Had I not been looking right at him thinking to myself what an idiot, when he turned into my lane I would not have seen him and for sure he would have hit my car and caused a serious accident. However, I was paying attention at that moment and I honked my horn as I swerved to my left to avoid him hitting me.

Because the rain was so intense and the highway was wet, as I swerved to the left, my car started to skid and my two left wheels felt as if they were lifting off the ground. Fortunately, I am a good driver and having been brought up in New York, had enough practice to handle my car in bad weather, this incident ended with nothing more than anger from me towards the unknown driver in the other car that could have ended in a much more profound outcome, such as death, dismemberment or combination of the two, plus an insurance filing.

The incident made me relate to something I had just read about a test pilot that when interviewed expressed his view that fate is a hunter. So true.

My thoughts afterward, made me realize how fortunate I am and that I am living my life in such a manner as that when the final curtain call does come for me, I am not going to have too many regrets. It was an interesting experience in that I was not in fear of losing my life nor did I experience an adrenaline rush nor did a movie of my life flash before my eyes. There was a calm that came over me as if that if this was my time, then I was ready to accept it. Perhaps that it all happened so fast or even though it look and felt precarious, my senses told me that I was in control of the car and I was going to maneuver out of danger.

It has been a couple of days now since my brush with near death and I look back at the experience with distant emotions and feel the urge to live my life to the fullest one more time.

Going to New York.

I originally planned my trip to New York’s JFK to coincide directly into the path of hurricane Irene. Well not quite exactly, my trip was already planned, but the day before I was supposed to leave, I called the airline only to find that all flights were cancelled. That worked out okay in the long run. Today is September 2nd and I am 35,000 feet above the planet 2 hours away from landing at JFK, listening to My favorite tunes on Spotify and typing this on my iPad.

I can really use a vacation, unfortunately this is not going to be one. True I might be out of my office, but I will be hard at works on Tuesday. For those reading this that are not living in the US, this weekend is a national holiday called Labor Day. In the past Labor Day used to be the holiday that separated summer from fall. The end of summer holiday and the beginning of the school season. But it it is not like that any more. School started two weeks ago. I known this because thats when the lights started to flash as I was driving by the public school and I had to slow down to 15 MPH. How in convenient. Driving 15 miles per hour is equivalent to being stuck in a time warp. Having said that brings the joke to mind “the only good thing about about a pedophile is they drive slow in a school district” (bad!!!! I know, but you’ll be tell that joke tomorrow).

But I diverse, the reason I am going to New York is to be with my best childhood friends who are celebrating their 60th birthday and there is a big party at my friend Lonny’s house. I like hanging out with these people, after all these years I am finally the best looking one amongst them. Amazing what daily exercise, hair dye, and plastic surgery can do for you. I will report back from the flight home next Friday. I bet you can’t wait to hear all about it????

The question is, how can I take a trip to New York and not set up meetings with people I do business with that I like? I can’t. More to follow…….

To my good friend & mentor Richard Fitzgerald (February 23, 1946 – August 23,2011)

To my good friend & mentor Richard Fitzgerald (February 23, 1946 – August 23,2011):

The year was 1978 and I was working in the mailroom of Bearsville Records. Renee was the secondary promotion person at Bearsville and her boyfriend and soon to be husband Michael Dundas was working for RSO Records just few blocks away up La Cienga. One day, Renee asked me if I could drop off a package of LPs to Michael who was working at RSO Records. I agreed and upon arriving at the RSO office and dropping off the package to Michael. If my memory serves me correctly, it was around lunch time and Michael invited me to stay for some pizza, which I did. That was the day I met Richard Fitzgerald. He was very friendly to me and we just bonded immediately. We both had a love of music and the business of music.

RSO was booming at the time with Saturday Night Fever and then Grease and so was the local Los Angeles music scene with acts like Blondie and the Motels, The Knack, and a host of others and I had my finger on the pulse of the scene. Doug Fieger and Prescot from The Knack were friends and I had their demo of My Sharona and I played it for Rich. He really liked it and he called his boss Al Coury in to listen to it. RSO didn’t really have an A&R department, it was Robert, Al & Richard. Al liked it too, but as Capitol Records were close to making a deal and Al was working the biggest records of all time, just was not interested, however Richard was. Richard was really curious about the L.A. Music scene, but was too busy to hit the streets so, from time to time, I would get together with him and play him demo tapes of what I thought was hot, and the best part about it was that Richard agreed with my taste. Richard saw the opportunity to expand his roll from running the promotion department into creating a vibrant A&R department and start signing bands to the RSO, but Al wasn’t. What to do?????

As RSO was a huge player in the record business at that time, unsolisited demo tapes from aspiring artists were flooding into the RSO offices and seeing he was really the only one at the company that wanted to do A&R, all of the tapes were ending up in his office. Richard did not have time to listen to them. At this point in time Bearsville had fired me as they were being absorbed by Warners and I got caught doing something that I shouldn’t have been doing (no need to go into that at this point). Having more free time and looking for a job, I asked Richard if he had a job opening for me. He said he had an idea.

The idea was to start an A&R department, but Al was not was not interested, but Richard was. And if you know Richard, he was soft spoken, didn’t like conflict, but was determined like nobody’s business to get the job done right. So this is what Richard did. He asked me if I would listen to the tapes that he was getting. His plan was to have me listen to the tapes reject the ones that weren’t any good and submit the ones that I liked to him and he would submit them to Al and see if he could convince Al to start the department. He paid me out of his own pocket and I worked out of his apartment, which happened to be just around the corner from the RSO offices on Sunset. This went on for about a month, but still Al was not interested.

Then Richard came up with a plan. I never thought it would work, but believe it or not, it did. Richard told me that I had to stop listening to the tapes and give him some time. I had no choice, so I did.

Al’s office was adjoining Richard’s and Al would constantly pop in and sit down and go over business with Richard. So what Richard did, was instead of putting the demo tapes in boxes on the floor of his office, he allowed them to accumulate and he had them piled up on all of the chairs and the couch in his office. Now when Al came into his office, he had no place to sit down. It took all of about two weeks for Al to tell Richard to hire me so that he could have a place to sit.

There is another part of this story, that goes beyond the fact that Richard created the job of a life time for me. Richard believed in me. And if you knew Richard, you knew that no one was a more loyal friend. He proved it with me. You see at the time, I had a problem. I was a drug addict. I was getting high from the moment I woke up until I took something to put me a sleep. Richard knew this, but he saw something in me that no one else saw in me including myself. He befriended me and made me promise that if he got me a job working for him that I would give up drugs and get myself together. He painted the most amazing picture of what my future could be like and he convinced me and stood by me all the way to assisted me in getting off drugs and going straight.

Working with him was one of the best periods of my life and if it wasn’t for Richard’s loyalty, friendship, tutorship and caring, I might have never made it out of the 70s.

Richard, I love you and you will alway live in my heart.

To my good friend & mentor Richard Fitzgerald (February 23, 1946 – August 23,2011)

To my good friend & mentor Richard Fitzgerald (February 23, 1946 – August 23,2011):

The year was 1978 and I was working in the mailroom of Bearsville Records. Renee was the secondary promotion person at Bearsville and her boyfriend and soon to be husband Michael Dundas was working for RSO Records just few blocks away up La Cienga. One day, Renee asked me if I could drop off a package of LPs to Michael who was working at RSO Records. I agreed and upon arriving at the RSO office and dropping off the package to Michael. If my memory serves me correctly, it was around lunch time and Michael invited me to stay for some pizza, which I did. That was the day I met Richard Fitzgerald. He was very friendly to me and we just bonded immediately. We both had a love of music and the business of music.

RSO was booming at the time with Saturday Night Fever and then Grease and so was the local Los Angeles music scene with acts like Blondie and the Motels, The Knack, and a host of others and I had my finger on the pulse of the scene. Doug Fieger and Prescot from The Knack were friends and I had their demo and I played it for Rich. He really liked it and he called his boss Al Coury in to listen to it. RSO didn’t really have an A&R department, it was Robert, Al & Richard. Al liked it too, but as Capitol Records were close to making a deal and Al was working the biggest records of all time, just was not interested, however Richard was. Richard was really curious about the L.A. Music scene, but was too busy to hit the streets so, from time to time, I would get together with him and play him demo tapes of what I thought was hot, and the best part about it was that Richard agreed with my taste. Richard saw the opportunity to expand his roll from running the promotion department into creating a vibrant A&R department and start signing bands to the RSO, but Al wasn’t. What to do?????

As RSO was a huge player in the record business at that time, unsolisited demo tapes from aspiring artists were flooding into the RSO offices and seeing he was really the only one at the company that wanted to do A&R, all of the tapes were ending up in his office. Richard did not have time to listen to them. At this point in time Bearsville had fired me as they were being absorbed by Warners and I got caught doing something that I shouldn’t have been doing (no need to go into that at this point). Having more free time and looking for a job, I asked Richard if he had a job opening for me. He said he had an idea.

The idea was to start an A&R department, but Al was not was not interested, but Richard was. And if you know Richard, he was soft spoken, didn’t like conflict, but was determined like nobody’s business to get the job done right. So this is what Richard did. He asked me if I would listen to the tapes that he was getting. His plan was to have me listen to the tapes reject the ones that weren’t any good and submit the ones that I liked to him and he would submit them to Al and see if he could convince Al to start the department. He paid me out of his own pocket and I worked out of his apartment, which happened to be just around the corner from the RSO offices on Sunset. This went on for about a month, but still Al was not interested.

Then Richard came up with a plan. I never thought it would work, but believe it or not, it did. Richard told me that I had to stop listening to the tapes and give him some time. I had no choice, so I did.

Al’s office was adjoining Richard’s and Al would constantly pop in and sit down and go over business with Richard. So what Richard did, was instead of putting the demo tapes in boxes on the floor of his office, he allowed them to accumulate and he had them piled up on all of the chairs and the couch in his office. Now when Al came into his office, he had no place to sit down. It took all of about two weeks for Al to tell Richard to hire me so that he could have a place to sit.

There is another part of this story, that goes beyond the fact that Richard created the job of a life time for me. Richard believed in me. And if you knew Richard, you knew that no one was a more loyal friend. He proved it with me. You see at the time, I had a problem. I was a drug addict. I was getting high from the moment I woke up until I took something to put me a sleep. Richard knew this, but he saw something in me that no one else saw in me including myself. He befriended me and made me promise that if he got me a job working for him that I would give up drugs and get myself together. He painted the most amazing picture of what my future could be like and he convinced me and stood by me all the way to assisted me in getting off drugs and going straight.

Working with him was one of the best periods of my life and if it wasn’t for Richard’s loyalty, friendship, tutorship and caring, I might have never made it out of the 70s.

Richard, I love you and you will alway live in my heart.

How to move your Friends and Photos from Facebook & Linked In to Google+

August 11th, 2011: I have had my team working on moving my contacts and photos from FaceBook and Linked In to Google+.

As of today we have moved 2,700+ friends and all of my photos.  We have read numerous blog posts on how to do this and I would like to give credit to all of those that have gotten us to this point, but unfortunately my team forgot to make notes on where we found the info. Anyway to those that have assisted me to getting this far, I want to thank you and if you want to comment that you have assisted us, I welcome your comments.

How to transfer your Facebook photos and FaceBook & Linked In friends over to Google Plus:

For Photos:

Download the web browser Google Chrome: http://www.google.com/chrome?&brand=CHMB&utm_campaign=en&utm_source=en-ha-na-us-sk&utm_medium=ha

Next, install the “Move your Photos” application from the Google Chrome app store: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/idiebfmmkhaffedkhjhapmagabcadjhc

After installation is complete, you should see a little orange icon that looks like a bus in the top right corner of the Google Chrome browser. Log into Facebook, and then click this icon.

A new tab will open and you will see all of your FaceBook photos and albums listed and you can select which ones you want to transfer, before scrolling to the bottom to hit upload.

The uploading process can take quite a while depending on the number of photos you have, since it takes roughly 11 seconds per photo. I had to transfer over a thousand photos so it took several hours. However, once you click upload you do not have to do anything else, so you can continue working while it transfers and uploads in the background (just make sure to leave the tab open).

When it is completed, you will find all of your Facebook photos on your Google Plus profile, organized by album in exactly the same way you had it on Facebook.

—-

For Friends:
Transferring your friends is best done with a Yahoo! account. If you do not have one, you can easily make one, however, you cannot use the features that you’ll need for the first 14 days (Yahoo! policy).

If this is the case, I’d suggest using a Hotmail account which will follow the same basic steps (bear in mind though that Hotmail has a limit of 1500 contacts, so if you have more than 1500 friends you’ll have to use Yahoo!).

Log into your Yahoo! mail, and click on the “Contacts” tab on the top. Near the center of the screen there is a button that says “Import Contacts.”  
Click on it, then click on the Facebook icon and enter your login information. In just a short period (over a thousand friends took just over a minute) it will import all of your Facebook friends as contacts in your Yahoo! account, with their name and e-mail they use for Facebook.

Next, login to Google Plus, and click on the “Circles” tab found to the left of the main search bar at the top.

Click on the “Find people” tab found underneath the “Circles” tab, and then click on the Yahoo! icon next to “Find friends.”

Give Google permission to access your Yahoo! contacts, and they will appear with the other profiles, above your circles, ready to be added.

At this point, simply drag your Facebook friends (who are easily identified with a purple “y” because they came from Yahoo!) into whichever circle you want, or perhaps make a new circle called “Facebook friends” and place them all there.

My Life So Far (edited for public view)

I was born in New York City, NY and grew up in the seaside community of Far Rockaway. Far Rockaway mostly made famous as the movie childhood home of Woody Allen.

My first recollection of being attracted to professional audio is when I heard the Pledge of Allegiance over the public school’s public address system. I knew that one day, I would be the one to hit the play button and by the time I was in 5th grade, I did.

My prowess and overwhelming desire for all things technical pushed me into becoming the President of the Audio-Video squad from 5th grade and all the way through to 9th. In my freshman (10th) year at Far Rockaway High School, I went so far as to join the Backstage Crew of the theatre group and was proud to wear the technical overalls required for the job.

Fortunately or unfortunately, that year (1966) I discovered girls and that girls preferred jocks over geeks and musicians over all the rest, so I traded in my overalls for jeans, teeshirts, and a guitar and never stepped foot next to a mimeograph machine or a backstage light dimmer again. Ah, but I look back at those days fondly as I still have a love for women and technology.

At 17, High School was not easy for me, the classes all started to early, and I found that I enjoyed the late night partying with girls much more to my taste then a 7 am algebra class. I guess that is way today if you ask me “if a car is going 60 in one direction and a bus is going 30 in another how long would it take for them to run into each other?”‘ I wouldn’t have clue. However, I do know that whatever you say to a woman on Thursday the 6th, she will remember it and use it against you when you are arguing on Friday the 28th.

I was accepted and attended the New York Institute of Technology, Old Westbury campus, but that was very rough on me, not only was that like being in a men’s dormitory, but because I was such a flake in high school that the college classes overwhelmed me.

I went there because I wanted to design and build computers and at that time computers were really a mysterious thing that hardly anyone had any experience with, but I had a sense that they were going to be the future. It seems I was right about that, as type this blog on my iPad and posting this wirelessly on the web. I dropped out and transferred to a city college, Queensboro, where I took up an arts and leisure curriculum and specialized in women sciences. And today I find computers easy to understand and women have become mysterious.

During the earlier stages of my life, I had hundreds of jobs, if not thousands. From working in a hardware store (1964) to being on the road with Led Zeppelin (1974) as the one that rented them large screen video projection, to Director of Artist & Repertoire at RSO Record (1982) to Director of Performing Arts, City of Los Angeles Street Scene Festival (1984) to Dunn & Bradstreet (1987) to A-1 Audio (1991) to performing stand up comedy (1995).

The point that I am making, if there is a point to my life, is that when I started SoundBroker.com in 1997, finally all of the skills that I had acquired came together in one place in time and space and everything I did (despite me) worked and worked well. Although there might be others now doing what I am doing, when I started, I was the first to use the Internet to perfect my craft.

On July 16, 2011, I introduced a newly designed version of SoundBroker.com. This version is completely optimized for use of operation, featuring a super friendly user interface, so that our members can get the maximum benefits.

I live my live with a few guiding philosophies that permeate my being which I have picked up from various people over my years, which I would like to share with you:
1) To thine own self be true. Be yourself, everyone else is taken.
2) I am not here just to make a living, I am here to make a difference. And who I am makes a difference.
3) If you are not the lead dog, the view never changes.
4) Only Robinson Crusoe had all his work done by Friday.
5) A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.
6) If it is worth doing it is worth doing for money.
7) You Make It Happen!!!!!

Somebody out there show me some love!

Last week SoundBroker.com introduced the new format and I have received more compliments on this design that I have ever gotten on anything I have ever done before in my life. That is more than an amazing fact. More compliments then any thing else I have done in my life. I am wondering what happened to my memory or is this a reality.

Either way, I am happy to report that whatever I am doing is working. This first week has absolutely has taken a toll on my life. There has not been one day that I have not started at 7 am in the morning and finished before 10 pm. The price we pay for getting lucky is getting more time consuming then we think it is going to be when we have this “Great Idea”.

It would be more than great if you could click on the Google and the Facebook like buttons and assist me in reaching the world in a more time efficient manner.