Jellee Works Productions
"awakening your hidden talents"
I started playing music when I was in the 5th grade. I had loved music and played a little piano and tried to make rhythm sounds using a couple of kitchen knives on an upside down chair to accompany my mother as she played piano (also by ear). It was just in me I guess. Anyway, one day in school an announcement came over the loud speaker that anyone who took band would be excused for 15 minutes of their 11 o'clock class and my 11 o'clock class happened to be geography and I was so bored that I couldn't get to band fast enough. But then, the school only supplied a tuba (definitely not for me...ugh), a bass drum (again not for me....) and snare drum. I really wanted to play saxophone but then my parents couldn't afford to buy an instrument so snare drum it was. Well, this was the early years of the beginning of "rock 'n roll", you know "Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Bill Haley and the Comets, Buddy Holly" and all those cats. A very exciting time in music. Well, I took to it so fast and it just completely over took my very being. I must have been pretty good as they put me in the High School Band the very next year and by the 7th grade I was the leader of the drum squad, in charge of the pep band, the jazz band and at the age of 13 was performing with bands in clubs and on stage at concerts. Then right out of high school I was chosen for an audition with Wanda Jackson (she was the very first country artist to cross over into Pop or Rock n Roll and have a number one Billboard hit) then the next thing I knew I was a member of her band "The Party Timers" and traveling the road and playing the "big time". From there, I played and toured with so many of the big names of the time (too many to mention here) but to name a few, I was in the original Jones Boys with George Jones, I traveled and appeared with Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline, Roger Miller and just about anybody who was anybody in the 60's. I also performed at the biggest venues, Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, the Biggest places in Las Vegas and did some television. I even traveled with the Beverly Hillbillies of TV doing rodeo's one summer. I then did a stint in the Air Force and worked with some of the best Jazz Musicians I've ever played with in my life. I started singing back then and performing with my own groups and released several records and wrote a lot of songs, which I still do. Then in 1982, my wife and I settled here in Kansas City, Missouri and I started Jellee Works Productions, Heart Land Records, Jellee Works Music-ASCAP, Jellee Music Works-BMI and Star Magazine a few years later. I built a recording studio and gave a lot of wonderful Kansas City musicians a home and solid paying work that was very hard for them to find. My main focus was being a record producer and producing songwriters and singers from all over the world and developing new talent. I sold that studio in 1997 and focused on my magazine for a few more years before closing the doors on that and retiring or trying to.
Why I'm doing this:
After trying this retirement thing, I found myself so bored without my music. I decided to build myself another recording studio. And even though I truly enjoy songwriting, singing and recording my material, I didn't find real happiness until a few years back when I was asked to help a young singer in the studio and then another one and another one. Suddenly I was "back in the business" and doing what I've loved to do every since I first started using my musical talent and expeience as a producer to help new talent achieve their best perfomance. Talent whether it be singers or songwriters need guidance. "we're not usually the best judge of how we sound or how our songs come across..." I also realized that parents and most people cannot afford to take themselves or their child into a normal recording studio and payout hundreds or thousands of dollars just to see if there's a possible career there or to "learn how to sing or how to write songs". For most it's an unknown experience, with unknown results and be at the mercy of others who are there to "pay the bills" and frankly charge as much as you're willing to pay. They are there to agree with you and accept your payment for the time you spend there. Now, nothing against them as that's exactly what they do to survive. But, I've been producing and teaching new talent since I quit the "road" in 1982 and I've truly loved every minute of "giving back" and helping others gain skills and improve their talent to enable them to reach their goals, whether it be to enjoy the creation of new songs or singing to ones full ability.
What I have to offer:
My studio is private. I can take as few or as many clients/students as I desire. I don't have "overhead" costs to maintain. This is my "giving back" and by utilizing my years of experience as a professional record producer, singer, musician, songwriter and publisher I can help new talent, be them singers, songwriters, lyricists, musicians, etc. by bringing them into my private studio and work with them on a "one on one" basis and teach them the craft and help them prepare for the next steps. How to sing, how to write a song, what about music publishing and more. And I'm able to do this in a manner that makes it as affordable for parents and clients as taking piano or guitar lessons. Although I'd be remiss here if I didn't point out that I also have an easy method of learning the piano and guitar that allows you to accompany yourself and you'll be amazed at how easy it actually is.
Owning the studio also gives me a tremendous advantage in being able to use it as a tool to measure progress and as a platform to teach with. As a professional entertainer, producer and publisher I'm frequently asked to consult on a project, songwriter consulting, performance consulting and I'm always just a phone call or email away.
Producing and recording demo recordings for songwriters, audition cds for singers, either through the mail or working with them here in a "one on one" setting is something I take tremendous pride in. As I looked through the internet and saw what the demo companies of today are charging I was just flatly amazed! I couldn't believe some people might be paying these exhorbidant fee's. Yes, they're mostly recorded in Nashville and yes they use fine professional musicians, but for a songwriter, especially a novice songwriter just looking to get their song noticed....I'm sorry to report but those high fees are not going to help, not even in the slightest bit. Why would you spend $750 to $1500 when you can get someone to actually help you develop your song material for a fraction of the cost?
Just take a minute and think about it? Any singer or producer or publisher looking for material, only wants to hear the basic song without a lot of frills. They're going to change it to suit themselves anyway and if your song is totally produced, they'll find that distracting and move on to another song. Your song only gets from 30 seconds to less than a minute of listening time at best and if that's clouded with production and not the true nature of the lyric being delivered clearly and effectively, they're going to pass. Songwriters and lyricists provide high quality lyrics with flowing melodies for the artists. That's what we do. Let them do the big productions at their cost.
Heart Land Records:
As the owner of Heart Land Records for many years now and a music publisher with both ASCAP and BMI, I've had the experience to produce and publish a lot of music, and in about any format you can imagine, including pop, country, christian, blues, jazz and more.
Having been a professional producer for over 30 years now, having the ability to take that "raw and unpolished" talent
and then help that talent find its path is one of the most rewarding experiences I've ever known.
AND I'M ALWAYS ON THE LOOKOUT FOR THE
NEXT SUPERSTAR WAITING TO BE DISCOVERED!!!
COULD THAT BE YOU???