'One Minute With Dec' 04 July 2010

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“3 Minutes on the Radio With Dec” –

"My Emails Are Written With Good Humour And Should Be Read With A Smile"

[-The views of any contributor to 'One Minute with Dec' are not necessarily the views of Dec Cluskey-]

"Crying is the religion of plain women – pretty women go shopping”


    Join Toastmasters International? [ you will never regret it ]
    My Guitars? [ interesting question from member ]
    An update from Frankie [The Incredible Charity Tour - Member Ian Campbell is having ball ]
    Subscriber's Section [ how to get past the secretary ]
    The gags: ..... [ And that, dear friends, is how it’s done – from Berril in S.A. ]

Join Toastmasters International? [ you will never regret it ]

Is your music great, your performing fantastic, your studio productions hit potential?

Could it be that your talking skills, presentation skills and downright meeting skills are letting you down big time? It simply is no good having everything else right but when it comes to actually pitching to Record Companies, Publishers, Agents, Managements, you are a simpering novice.... think about it.

I have been involved with Toastmasters International, the International Speakers club for 4 years now and what a journey that has been ... I am now the Area Governor for Toastmasters ... pretty high flying eh? And other members of The Serious Writers Guild have done exactly the same.

Toastmasters takes that fear of public speaking, meeting presentations away! It inspires you to tackle your fears in a positive and encouraging environment to become the speaker and leader you want to be. It is empowering because it allows you to build these skills at the pace you want and to practice them in a safe learning environment in your local Toastmasters Club. It gives you the passion to embrace your music dreams and goals and make them a reality.

Non profit making! And there will be a club near you [Bank of America have 60+ internal clubs ... Microsoft 57!]

So - if you want to overcome that initial nervousness at speaking in public, if you want to learn how to organise and present your ideas logically and convincingly for the Record Company, your boss or colleagues, or if you just want to be taken more seriously and listened to by your friends and family then why not visit one of the local Toastmasters clubs. We have over 230 clubs throughout Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales. Find one that will inspire you with the passion you need to fulfil your dreams and aspirations!

Go to http://www.toastmasters.org... go to 'find a club' on the left and navigate to find a club near you ... remember you don't pay a penny as a guest. Tell them Dec Cluskey sent you..

“Money is your only friend. Money never lets you down” George Getty

My Guitars? [ interesting question from member ]

I got an email asking me about the guitars which were associated with my band through the years … I had never even thought of them ….. here is my reply:

<<<< We have used very many acoustic guitars and still do …. All of them were given to us [except a recently bought Martin Dreadnaught which our good friend Frank, who owns Brixton Music Exchange, found in his warehouse and one from Mike Hurst]

In Dublin, prior to coming to the UK, we used a big blonde Hofner Committee and a more usual brown coloured Hofner F hole … then replaced by an unnamed F hole in the UK, very warm toned, very muddy.

The most famous guitar we used was the Gibson J160E, the one used by The Beatles … but we had them first! From Dick Twydell of Selmer [importers of Gibson]. We used Selmer amplifiers then, supplied by Dick.

Then a number of Martin Dreadnaught electrics … these were probably more photographed than any, blonde and beautiful. Two were stolen at Elstree TV Studios and more from the Hippodrome Theatre in Birmingham and another from Kings Theatre in Newcastle. We still have one … the smaller bodied electric version … considerably butchered by John Birch, the renowned guitar master craftsman .... on my instructions, I might add.

The first Martin was bought from Mike Hurst [The Springfields and a huge record producer] and we bought his banjo … a gorgeous Gibson … which was sadly smashed when the guitars were stolen at Elstree TV Studios….

We were given Rickenbackers in the Sixties [again, before The Beatles] but thought they were dreadful … I gave mine to Pete Carter .. the guitarist who used to travel with us.

Currently we use, on stage, a Martin Sigma [stunning live and recording guitar] and a Gibson Blue Ridge, the first in the UK, from Selmer [with under bridge pick-ups] …. We also use a Fender Strat [given by Arbiter]

For recording we use those two acoustics plus a Gibson J45 [non electric circa 1964 skilfully improved by John Birch] the Martin Dreadnaught mentioned above with a Fischer under bridge pick up and an original ancient Hofner round hole [brilliant for quirky solos as it has two pickups .. so it presents the image in stereo] …. The Fender is used in studio and my treasured Les Paul custom [probably 1960] … always through Marshall gear.

I also use a beautiful Takumi hand built classical guitar [circa 1964]. I used that on our contribution to the album, ‘The Gathering’, with Brian May, Mike Batt, Midge Ure, Rick Wakeman, Martin Taylor, John Lodge, Joe Brown, Chas McDevitt, the legend Bert Weedon and Gordon Giltrap … some line-up?

Con [my brother and band partner] has quite a number of other acoustics … Takamine and Yamaha amplified acoustic … we also have quite a number of electric guitars, Ibanez Roadstar [ used by many session players through the years ] and probably the first Les Paul copy which was given to us in Australia [unnamed].

We also have ukuleles … when recording our Irish album [‘Irish Songs – the way we sing ‘em’] two years ago we were given a beauty ‘Mahalo’ by John Brown of Fender … we used it on ‘Dublin Can Be Heaven’ … which John and I played uke’s on.

We have a number of 5 string banjos, a finger picking style I love playing, but I have never found one to replace that fantastic Gibson one.

We have been so lucky though the years to have so many major manufacturers look after us … most recently Shure when we ran into problems with our touring radio mic. rig. >>>>>>>

"A conclusion is the place where you get tired of thinking” Victoria Cluskey

An update from Frankie [The Incredible Charity Tour - Member Ian Campbell is having ball ]

“Well wow! Just broke the £16,000 mark yesterday...total now £16,004.00.

Thank you sooo much to EVERYONE!!

The guy who left a twenty pound note under my wiper blade...the guy who gave me a tenner in Morrisons car park...the guy who paid £400 for a Joe Scarborough artists proof...to Joe Scarborough for donating it...and the family who bid a tidy sum to have Chefologys Mark Flynn as personal chef for the night. To all at the Sparrowhawk for a record breaking (so far) £1,516.50

To the gentleman in Sheffield who gave me a big margarine tub full of coppers...to all the businesses who have donated prizes for raffles and to staff members who have given up their tips for the cause...I am humbled by the human kindness shown everywhere I go.

Day 58 next...bring it on!

very best to all ... Frankie

Ian Campbell, BND Music Co., 104 Park Gate, Upper College St., Nottingham NG1 5AP UK

Tel; UK: 07921128717


“Age + Experience … it doesn’t get any better” Dec Cluskey


“The last 3 years, I've worked with a pop act on Universal LA, co-organised a large pop concert with a hit singer for missing Madeleine McCann (finally 'red taped' by 2 MP's) and had 2 trading jobs with a bank and a hedge fund. All, mostly, thanks to you.

I find myself currently, not quite up on my luck and your email is the push I need. You are absolutely right. I'm back on track again.

Thanks again for your help.

Genuinely appreciated as always.

David Nickerson”



"The only easy day was yesterday”

Subscriber's Section [ how to get past the secretary ]

“Hi Dec,

Could you very quickly run over 'how to get past the secretary' once the sales letter has been sent to the boss.

Thanks again for your help.

Kindest regards,

D**** N*******

Serious Writers Guild.”


My Reply:

Our rules are "one short reply to ONE question on music FOR NON-MEMBERS, Members of 'The Serious Writers Guild' have unlimited personal access to Dec by direct telephone, Fax and Email, apply at https://secure.mistral.co.uk/makehits/swgappsecure.htm".

[Any advice given here shall not be deemed as financial or legal advice under any existing or future laws of any country]


Please reread the sections in ‘How To Make A $Million from your music’How To Make A $Million from your music re this very point.

The question is : “why do you want to get past the secretary?”

Is your music not commercial enough, sellable enough, wanted enough?

Rethink what you are doing … the industry is actively and desperately looking for Top Three material every hour of the day, every day. Therefore, the secretary, the A&R man, the Boss … in fact, everyone is actively looking … that is how they stay in their jobs, get bonuses, put food on the table.

So why try to use anything but the Industry standard … exciting letter, generating a meeting … generating a listening to ONE almighty Gob Smacking toon that will make the company many millions … so the boss is happy … the secretary is happy … the shareholders are delighted!

The secretary is not one to be circumnavigated … she is the one to cultivate … she is the keeper of the door … simple stuff?

But your job is to present the Almighty World Wide Number One product. You have to prove that to them … they do not have to prove anything to you … cruel, but the exact truth.


Dec [Cluskey] dec@makehits.com

2 Gold discs in 2008! Decca have relaunched their ‘World Of’ series on the back of those hits. Readers Digest are now promoting a triple album set …. Do you think I can help your music career succeed?

Check out 'How to Make A £Million From your Music' at http://www.makehits.co.uk. Secure purchase at https://secure.mistral.co.uk/makehits/swgappsecure.htm or fast cred*it card line: +44 1323.728005 or UK 01323.728005

“3 Minutes on the Radio with Dec” …. Available immediately at http://www.myspace.com/makehits

"You are the only one who makes my heart go faster and slower at the same time”

The gags: ..... [ And that, dear friends, is how it’s done – from Berril in S.A. ]

“Jennifer's wedding day was fast approaching. Nothing could dampen her excitement - not even her parent's nasty divorce.

Her mother had found the PERFECT dress to wear, and would be the best-dressed mother-of-the-bride ever!

A week later, Jennifer was horrified to learn that her father's new, young wife had bought the exact same dress as her mother!

Jennifer asked her father's new young wife to exchange it, but she refused."Absolutely not! I look like a million bucks in this dress, and I'm wearing it" she replied.

Jennifer told her mother who graciously said, "Never mind sweetheart. I'll get another dress. After all, it's your special day"

A few days later, they went shopping, and did find another gorgeous dress for her mother. When they stopped for lunch, Jennifer asked her mother, "Aren't you going to return the other dress? You really don't have another occasion where you could wear it."

Her mother just smiled and replied, "Of course I do, dear... I'm wearing it to the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding."

And that, dear friends, is how it’s done!"


Now Click here to Join 'One Minute With Dec' Mailing List.... FREE!

  • “Hi Dec £170,000 I've made in the past six months ... so many projects I haven't a minute. Number 4 in Music Week chart ... can't wait for next year ... they are predicting huge chart success for my productions. Unbelievable.
    D**** E****”

  • Enjoy video for a song I co-wrote with extraordinary Dutch singer Jenny Lane.
    I have 2 co-written songs on her great new album Monsters.
    Thanks for all the continued support & advice... Mick Lee.

  • In 2010 film, just budgeted in LA, for full theatrical in the US for $8.7mill with Paul Kay attached.
    Two Liverpool 08 commissions. First with 200 choir Second a major CD Brass Band album with Fairey Brass Band ... Phil Lawrence [UK]

  • I had my first Top Ten Hit in Germany as a songwriter, great things are happening ... I'm on tour all over Europe with the band that I'm producing. We're the official support act for 50 Cent. 15 shows in the greatest countries of Europe. Marcell Brell [Germany]

  • We played The Cavern Club in Liverpool
    Patchwork Grace were the best thing they'd ever seen!!
    Ian - Thanks again Dec! [UK]

  • I was asked to play at the Pepsi Music festival in Buenos Aires. The most important festival held on the whole South American continent. it lasts 10 days every major local star, as well as many international acts like Megadeath, The Wailers, Die Toten Hose, etc. Thanks again Dec ... Emiliano Canal [Argentina]

  • Recently I have finished a score for an independent movie called “Treehouse”. I am now composing tracks for various music libraries for licencing and am also discussing publishing the MUNKIE catalogue with various publishers. Jason Clarke. [N. Ireland]

  • This is Yosi & Ofir Nafkar from Israel member of The Serious Writer Guild Membership No NET0778030W. We wrote music for an Australian Movie By Kerry Bowden. She is a great woman who helps children in need. The movie and the music had a great success. Together we gathered 1million$. [Israel]

  • Hi Dec, some good news regarding my girlfriend Erin's songs, 3 are being used on a new American TV show. Anyway thanks again for your invaluable support, knowing your there makes this leap into the publishing world feel a lot safer ... Roger O'Donnell [The Cure]

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