#119 – Use This Downtime To Get Your Music Business Affairs In Order

Use This Downtime To Get Your Music Business Affairs In Order

Branding is your identity. Whether it’s your look on stage, your logo, or your style of your music. Its what sets you apart from all the others. In this episode, we talk with Rick Caballo, who’s the founder and Art Director for Dead Horse Branding, and dig into what it takes to discover what your unique powers are in order to stand out from the noise.

We discuss such components as:

Branding your identity

What is your personal core message

Find Out who you are, pick your lane, and build on that.

What is your sound, and what does that does your sound look like

We also chat about Baha Men (“Who Let The Dogs Out”) which is one of the many clients that Dead Horse Branding is working on developing their career.

Equally at home on stage before thousands, or working up designs for cutting-edge brands, Rick Caballo is nothing if not creative.

Now based in Nashville TN, Rick was born and raised in Wollongong, near Sydney, Australia. This accomplished singer-songwriter, artist, photographer, and designer have a rare combination of charisma and ingenuity which means he is constantly in demand.

As a musician, Rick has performed for audiences across Australia, the USA, and Europe. He is adept at a broad range of genres and has been influenced by artists ranging from the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan to Bruce Springsteen and U2. Rick’s first full-length album, Love Retaliation, was recorded in Nashville and has received regular airplay on Australian and European radio. 

As a prolific writer, Rick has been recognized with numerous nominations and songwriting awards. His musical talent has also drawn endorsements from Cole Clark Guitars and Caterpillar Luggage, who supported his USA and European tours.

Some of Rick’s most memorable performances include the CMA Festival (Nashville) and the Eunice Kennedy Shriver Challenge (Washington DC), where he shared the stage with Chris Brown and David Archuletta.

Music also provides a rich source of inspiration for Rick as a visual artist. As skilled with a brush as he is with a guitar, Rick is best known for his rock star portraits of such icons as Keith Richards, Willie Nelson, Mick Jagger and Bono. He’s signed to Celebrites Gallery in Maui, alongside other artists, including Ronnie Wood, Steven Tyler and Mick Fleetwood. 

For Rick, his art is all about people who have an interesting story, and in recent years his instinct for capturing the essence of his subjects has extended into photography. From fashion and concert shoots to celebrity portraits, Rick has a unique eye for striking, honest, and intriguing images.

And while most people would kill to have such a wealth of musical and artistic talent, Rick has even more strings to his bow, underlined by a passion for design in all its forms – most notably graphic design, fashion, and even hand-crafted furniture.

Working with partner Melissa Core, Rick has established numerous successful enterprises. After launching their flagship company, rock-fashion label CORELLO, in 2012 the pair quickly attracted interest from several quarters. Rick’s CORELLO designs have been donned by Steven Tyler, Don Was, Miranda Lambert, Train, Hayden Panettiere, and Ryan Roxie / Alice Cooper, among others. The line also featured in hit TV series Nashville and Duck Dynasty, plus LA Fashion Magazine, Country Weekly, People Magazine, and InStyle. This meteoric rise, and the impact of CORELLO on country music fashion, was acknowledged in 2014 with Rick and Mel being inducted into the Tennessee State Museum Textiles Institute, for changing the face of Country fashion.

 Caballo and Core are also the creative force behind the Calvary Fashion line, which they developed for Duck Dynasty star Jep Robertson. 

In 2015, the pair launched Dead Horse Branding. This 360-degree creative management company provides creative art and brand management, combining Rick’s across-the-board art and design direction with Melissa’s visionary approach to marketing and management. One of Dead Horse’s major projects is a coffee table book for legendary music producer (and keys player for Elvis) Tony Brown. Due for release in 2016, the book is entirely art-directed by Rick, from graphic design to photographing the 40+ featured celebrity portraits and working with Brown to document the history of modern country music. 

Rick’s adaptability and creativity mean he’s always working on multiple new concepts and challenging traditional boundaries between music, art, fashion, and design.

The Business Side of Music ™

© 2020 Beyond the Music

Co-Produced & Hosted (by the guy who has a face for podcasting): Bob Bender

Co-Producer, Creator & Technical Advisor (the man behind the curtain): Tom Sabella

Audio Engineer (one really cool guy): Jim Tennaboe

Director of Video & Continuity (the brains of the entire operation): Deborah Halle

Lighting Director (the inventor of video): Mark Pleasant

Marketing & Social Media: Kaitlin Fritts

All Around Problem Solver: Connie Ribas

Recorded at: The Coffee House and Underground Bunker in Franklin, TN (except during the COVID 19 pandemic, then it’s pretty much done VIA Skype or over the phone, with the exception for those fearless enough to come to Bob Bender’s living room… and there are a few).

Mixed & Mastered at Music Dog Studios in Nashville, TN

Website: businesssideofmusic.com 

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Special Thanks to Tom Sabella and Traci Snow for producing and hosting over 100 episodes of the original “Business Side of Music” podcast, and trusting us to carry on their legacy.


Music on this show is:

“Hanging On” – Music & Words by Hemp Meadows / BMI / Hemp Meadows Music. Copyright 2020

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