Ari Herstand

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Ari Herstand
Nationality United States of America
Genres Rock & Folk
Instruments guitar · voice

Ari Herstand
Ari Herstand in Joshua Tree in 2013
Ari Herstand in Joshua Tree in 2013
Background information
Birth nameAri Seth Herstand
Born (1985-06-01) June 1, 1985 (age 37)
OriginMinneapolis, Minnesota, United States
music industry blogger
Beat Boxing
Boss RC 50 Loop Station
LabelsAri's Take, Inc

Ari Seth Herstand (born June 1, 1985) is an American musician, songwriter, author, actor, blogger based in Los Angeles, California (previously Minneapolis, Minnesota). He is the CEO and founder of the music business education and artist advocacy company, Ari's Take.

Herstand has played at Summerfest in Milwaukee, WI and the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, TX, as well as Carnegie Hall. He has played with various artists including Milk Carton Kids, Phil Vassar, Matt Nathanson, Joshua Radin, Eric Hutchinson, and Ron Pope. He has received airplay on NPR's program All Things Considered and Cities 97

He is known on television for his roles in Transparent, Aquarius, 2 Broke Girls, Touch, The Fosters, and Sam & Cat.

He is the author of How To Make It in the New Music Business: Practical Tips on Building a Loyal Following and Making a Living as a Musician (Liveright)

Herstand runs the podcast The New Music Business with Ari Herstand, in which he interviews musicians and music-industry professionals. It won the 2021 Webby Award for Best Music Podcast.

Background[edit | edit source]

Ari Herstand grew up in both Madison, Wisconsin and Shorewood, Wisconsin. He is self-taught on the piano and began playing guitar at 14. He picked up the trumpet in 5th grade. and then again in 2010 on One Tree Hill. He performed at the South by Southwest Music festival in Austin, Texas in 2006 and 2007 and was a speaker 2015 – 2019. He performed Summerfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and helped book and run the Chipotle Rhythm Kitchen and Tiki Hut stages from 2006 to 2010.

In 2008, Ari Herstand showcased at the NACA (National Association for Campus Activities) Northern Plains region, where he booked over 50 shows for the 2008–2009 school year. He showcased at NACA Northern Plains region again in 2013 and Nationals in 2014 along with showcasing at various APCA conferences.

Herstand has played the majority of his shows solo. He spent the beginning of 2012 in Minnesota recording his new album with producer Paul Marino, drummer Dave King, bassist Jim Anton, guitarist Jake Hanson, keyboardist Joey Kantor and vocalists Alicia Wiley and Tonia Hughes. He funded this album primarily through his successful Kickstarter Campaign.

Because of his success as an independent musician, blogger and author, Forbes Magazine called Ari Herstand "The poster child of DIY music."

In reviewing the album, American Songwriter Magazine cited Herstand as "a commanding performer and a world-class songwriter."

Ari's Take[edit | edit source]

In Spring 2012, Herstand started the music business blog Ari's Take to help independent musicians build careers without the help of a record label. The blog is based on Herstand's experience as a touring musician (with 700+ shows) as well as his work as an artist manager. Ari's Take articles have been featured on CD Baby, Music Connection, TuneCore, Digital Music News, Roland, American Songwriter, and Hypebot.

Ari's Take is now a music business education company where it is the hub for Ari's Take Academy, where thousands of students take online courses taught by experts in the industry, and the New Music Business podcast with Ari Herstand. Herstand hosts successful music professionals to discuss how they have navigated and succeeded in the new music business. Guests have included Andy Grammer, Zaytoven, Jack Conte and Dina LaPolt

Author[edit | edit source]

Herstand is the author of How To Make It in the New Music Business: Practical Tips on Building a Loyal Following and Making a Living as a Musician. The foreword was written by Derek Sivers. Rolling Stone wrote about the book: "It's a fun and informative read for every artist out there looking to live off their creative craft. The book does a great job of explaining the process of generating royalties and crowdfunding goals, all while delivering important info in a witty and wise tone that’s comprehensive but never condescending." Andy Grammer said "There is a great divide between what the young musician thinks being a rock star is and what actually working as a musician entails. Ari fills in the blanks with his light hearted yet blunt demeanor. He's the informed older brother most of us never got in this crazy, confusing industry." Derek Sivers said "This is the single best book on the current music business. An absolute must read for every musician." In the Summer of 2021, Brassroots District put on a fully immersive funk/soul theatrical concert experience in a parking lot in Downtown Los Angeles with 16 shows spanning 4 weekends. The story chronicled the band's fictitious opening slot for Sly and the Family Stone in the year 1973. Directed by Monica Miklas, script by Daysha Veronica, co-created with Andrew Leib, performing all original songs written by Herstand and Brett Nolan.

Independent Music Professionals United and AB5[edit | edit source]

Beginning in November 2019, Herstand worked to "save his industry from detrimental changes" that would be brought about by California bill AB5. AB5 "reclassifies musicians from independent contractors to employees… to hire a musician for a recording session… [a recording artist would have to] become their employer… get worker's comp insurance, unemployment insurance, set up a payroll company." On April 17, a compromise measure was announced to exempt the vast majority of musicians from most provisions of AB5. The bill, AB2257, which Herstand helped write, was signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom on September 4, 2020.

UnCancelled Music Festival[edit | edit source]

When the Coronavirus shut down the live music industry, Herstand, along with friends Andrew Leib and Ashley Maietta launched UnCancelled Music Festival. All shows were livestreamed from artists' homes on the platform Stageit where fans had to purchase tickets to attend the performances and could tip the artists during the show. The festival engaged music venues to book talent and curate stages so they could participate in the revenue generated to help keep the businesses afloat during the crisis. Part of the proceeds were donated to the Recording Academy's Emergency Financial Assistance fund MusiCares. The festival featured over 350 artists from around the globe including Colbie Caillat, Betty Who, Josh Radnor, Waxahatchee, Beach Bunny and Snail Mail. The festival organizers look to keep the festival active until live music returns to music venues.

Discography[edit | edit source]

Albums[edit | edit source]

Studio releases[edit | edit source]

Released independently:

Live, single and EP releases[edit | edit source]

Released independently:

References[edit | edit source]