Derek Sivers


I made aquaintence with Derek Sivers back in 1995 when, at the time, he was gaining reputation as an independent music distributor. I looked him up for help on getting my 1994 Christmas album ‘out there’ and because of his help, it continues to sell to this day. He came to run one of the best and most efficient independent recording distribution companies I have ever heard of called ‘CD Baby’.

Derek built the company almost singlehandedly very early on once he was turned down by all the ‘majors’ with his own musical releases. He’s a tenacious guy, and after having successfully placing his own music in stores independently, other musicians started coming to him for help placing their music as well. CD Baby was born.

A few years back Derek retired from his own company, selling it in a ‘charitable’ capacity.

I subscribe to a news letter he posts via email periodically and today’s really hit home with me.
I have two things in my life that have remained a constant. I love to ride bicycle (which started with borrowing my brother Ken’s 10 speed as a young teenager and pedalling all over The Soo literally day and night) and music.
Everything else (it would seem) is subject to change… Especially in the category of ‘opinion’.

My personal beliefs and way of life have changed radically over the years. Some circumstantial, some purely by design and influence.

I am absolutely gobsmacked at the criteria politicians have to meet in order to be elected. Their opinions, beliefs and lifestyle have to have remained consistent from young adulthood (and sometimes as far back as high school!!!) for people to ‘trust’ their leadership qualities?

Here’s my humble opinion. Because of these ‘etched in stone’ impossible principles and standards, we (in the west especially) can’t elect our finest people to office. People about to run for office immediately have to start ‘spinning’ their past beliefs to reflect their present beliefs which starts their political stance on essentially ‘a lie’. They now are elected but have no ‘credibility’. I could presently have ideas that would save the world, but because of an opinion, a club I belonged to when I was 14 years old or a joint I smoked in high school, I am deemed ‘unfit’ for leadership? Sad… and most people wouldn’t subject themselves to that… so we are left to elect the only poor schmucks who for some reason have decided to become ‘public servants’… not for the best ideas… but because they can ‘spin’ the best.

Enough of that… (knowing me. I’ll change my mind about what I just wrote by the time I hit the ‘publish’ button). Yes – I’ll never run for public office…. probably….not….. maybe……

A blurb on Derek (courtesy of

* Originally a professional musician and circus clown, Derek Sivers created CD Baby in 1998.
* It became the largest seller of independent music online, with $100M in sales for 150,000 musicians.
* In 2008, Derek sold CD Baby for $22M, giving the proceeds to a charitable trust for music education.
* He is a frequent speaker at the TED Conference, with over 5 million views of his talks.
* In 2011, he moved to Singapore and published a book which shot to #1 on all of its Amazon categories.
* His new company is Wood Egg, publishing annual guides to 16 countries in Asia.

Here’s Derek’s link today:
Quote: Opinions are likely to change at any time, but are much harder to change if you’ve carved out your self-identity, declaring “This is what I love! That is what I hate!”

Though I’m happy to say this is what I hate or love today.


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Mick Dalla-Vee

Early days 1976 - He moved to Western Canada, after leaving Bawating High School from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, with the band Shama. Shama toured Western Canada and was managed by Bruce Allen (Bryan Adams, Martina McBride) before disbanding. 1981 -From that point he became the lead guitarist of Trama, managed by Sam Feldman (Joni Mitchell, Diana Krall), 1984 - then on to playing bass for the band Paradox which evolved into his current band Cease & Desist. 1989 - Cease & Desist has been described as "one of Vancouver's most popular bands" by Tom Harrison the rock music critic of The Province. He also plays the part of John in a Beatles cover band, Revolver, that was put together for Expo 86 Songwriting Mick has written or co-written many songs on albums for artists as diverse as country music's Brent Howard and Canada's Singing Cowgirl: Marilyn Faye Parney, the heavy rock sounds of Blackstone (released on the Delinquent label in Canada), the soul/R&B sounds Belinda Metz and 'Emily Jordan' to the 'smooth jazz' sounds of internationally acclaimed Lori Paul. 2005 - He co-wrote ten of the eleven songs on Paul's album Vanity Press. 1998 - His first country song 'The Wrangler' reached the country top 30 charts right across Canada. It also achieved 'Heavy Rotation' on C.M.T., Canada's country music video channel. One of the songs from Mick's 'A Whistler Christmas' album entitled, 'All I Want is You at Christmastime' has been recorded and released by Canadian country star, Brent Howard Currently - He has also written music for movies, television, videos, video games and promotional spots. His writing styles run the gamut from 'Smooth Jazz' to 'Heavy Thrash'. (A Whistler Christmas and Dalla-Vee's original Christmas songs are often heard on Canadian radio during their Christmas music programming.) Producing Aside from producing himself in an array of projects such as 1994's A Whistler Christmas album, he runs his own studio 'Millennia Sound Design', producing and engineering for artists like: Randy Bachman, Twitch, Swaggerjack, Emily Jordan, Russell Marsland, Lori Paul and Suzanne Gitzi among others. 2007 - has provided theme music and soundscapes for two network television series and Simon Fraser University. 2005 - Randy Bachman's CD "Jazzthing" had some work done on it at "Millennia Sound Design". Vocals Dalla-Vee has contributed to projects as diverse as, 1991 - the multi platinum heavy rock of the "Mötley Crüe" album "A Decade of Decadence" to the 2001 - country/rockabilly sounds of Brent Howard and Southern Cherry to Colin Arthur Wiebe. 1989 - Canadian legends, Trooper and The Powder Blues Band have also used Mick's voice for recordings. 1991 - He has worked extensively as a studio session singer/musician, with his talent of many voices being used on a worldwide 'Karaoke' album package marketed over the dreaded U.S. infomercial. He has sung a number of commercial jingles for radio and television. Awards Having recorded with a host of other Canadian and international recording acts such as Randy Bachman (of the band The Guess Who and Bachman Turner Overdrive), Mick was awarded a 'Gold Record' for his work on the 'Trooper' album 'Last of the Gypsies' in 1991. In 1997, he received the Saskatchewan Album of the Year Award for his song writing/musician contributions to an album with proceeds going to people affected with multiple sclerosis. 2011 – Gold Award for Bachman & Turner DVD – Live at the Roseland Ballroom 2013 – Platinum Award for Bachman & Turner DVD – Live at the Roseland Ballroom Appeared in ‘The Campaign’ with Will Ferrell, Zack Galifianakis, Dylan McDermott, John Lithgow, Dan Aykroyd and directed my Jay Roach (shot in New Orleans) Current – Write music for the popular ‘Holmes’ TV series on HGTV Releases: “Bachman and Turner” in 2010 Producing the Toronto pop/soul band ‘Hello Beautiful’. Heads the ‘Music in Motion Workshop’ for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation, a pilot project designed to develop a musical camaraderie with children, youth and young adults with Down Syndrome and other developmental disabilities. Live [edit] He keeps an extremely steady schedule playing guitar, bass and keyboards with his main band, Cease and Desist, and “The Atlantic Crossing Show” featuring Mick as John Lennon and Elton John. Since 2001 - He is the bass player/vocalist with Canadian Rock Legend, Randy Bachman's band 2004 - Bachman’s recent foray in the jazz world with his new CD, ‘Jazz Thing’ features Dalla-Vee on the ‘upright bass’. Ongoing - He plays mandolin, banjo, acoustic guitars and harmonica in the Brent Howard and Southern Cherry band, Ongoing - and has toured as John Lennon in 'Revolver - The Worlds Best Beatles Show'. Ongoing - In addition, he also works as a solo artist appearing regularly at special events and casinos. Affiliations 2004 - A longtime member of the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, he has sat on the panel as a judge for Canada's Juno Awards (Canada's Version of The Grammy's). 1989 – 2001 He was on the board of directors of the Pacific Music Industry Association for 3 years, and is also chair of 2000 – 2005 The Carolyn Foundation Musician's Assistance Society; a non-profit organization he and colleagues set-up in the wake of his daughter Carolyn's sudden death in November 1999