The Social Freelancer: Media + Music

The Social Freelancer and Trace Relations Music

For My Dad: Songs of Fathers and Sons

Post Update, Father’s Day, June 21, 2015:
Remembering my Dad, and all the inspiring men who are fathers, striving to be good examples, good men, in times of struggle as well as joy. My father died two months after I wrote this post but I carry the many fine memories I have of him with me every day. On Father’s day I also like to revisit these songs of Fathers and Sons, Harry Chapin’s “Cats in the Cradle” and Cat Stevens “Father and Son”.

My wife and I just had an interesting discussion about these two songs and the meaning of their lyrics. She correctly pointed out that they are sad songs, and that they are about fathers who had little time for their kids. And it’s true, I had a much richer life experience with my dad, who did spend time with me when he could. But he also dealt with the inherent struggles of life, having to be gone a lot to keep groceries on the table and missing out on a lot of poignant moments with his kids. I am grateful I had him for my dad. These songs are not about him or what my specific childhood was like, but they are songs that resonated with me as a young man, and I think they hold up to the test of time as examples of great storytelling and songwriting.

For My Dad: Songs of Fathers and Sons by Trace ~ October 30, 2010
My life has always been full of soundtracks, songs that resonate in any given situation. As I was thinking of my dad and all the twists and turns this world has brought to our lives, two songs began to seep into my consciousness from my past. Both were favorites of mine as a young man feeling my way out of the nest my parents so carefully laid for me. Now they come back to speak to me again. I hope you will enjoy these musical tales of fathers and sons as much as I do.

Great live performance of Cat’s in the Cradle by Harry Chapin, with a quick insight to family life at the beginning:

Cat Stevens – Father and Son (Live):

My dad, John Ready and mom, June Ready in 2005

My dad, John Ready and mom, June Ready in 2005

I am thinking a lot about my dad today, John F. Ready. Big John, Big J, we’ve called him lots of names, most of them nice. My dad is a great man, who always tried to do the right thing. Now he’s in poor health and at 82 is facing the end of his years with us. I cry and laugh as I think of the times I have had with my dad. He’s a man of integrity, honest to the core. His sense of humor and bright outlook have carried him and our whole family through many ups and downs, and he remains today jolly, with a twinkle in his eye. He’s also a man of great spiritual depth and wisdom. I know that he is at peace with himself and with God, and that brings me great comfort. While none of our lives are perfect and we might regret some of our words or actions, I know my dad loves me and I love him. I am proud to be his son.

Trace Ready "The Social Freelancer"

Trace Ready “The Social Freelancer”

Trace Ready is a Director of Photography, Writer, Producer and Vocalist based in Dallas, Texas. His band Trace Relations has released their debut studio CD “Prosperity Street”
Connect with Trace:

Like this? Help Trace keep his wheels on the road for the photo series “Vanishing Texas” and continue posting to this blog while juggling in “the freelance life.” – HERE:

Vanishing Texas Photography by Trace
Supporters receive my undying gratitude and a free copy of my music CD, “Prosperity Street” by Trace Relations Band

Read more…

posted by Tracy Ready in Fathers,Music,Psychology,Who? and have Comment (1)

5 Tips for Freelancers – and ALL Entrepreneurs

There are many lessons I have learned in more than 25 years in the business of television and video production (this is my 20th year as a freelancer).
Here are five tips I would consider KEY:

5 Tips for Freelancers – and ALL Entrepreneurs

1. Build strong alliances with other freelancers in your line of work and related fields.

Networking and keeping in touch with other directors of photography, photographers, writers, producers and related freelancers has been key to the longevity of my business. Some of them are my direct competitors, but I consider them allies.

Often a job will come up that I am too busy to do so I will refer the client to someone else, who I trust and is equally qualified (and who will not try to steal my client). This works both ways: I have gotten many shoots and writing jobs through this network of freelancers.

Additionally, people that I meet who work in related positions, like sound mixers, make up artists, gaffers and grips are valuable resources. Clients will sometimes ask these people if they know a director of photography or writer-producer who would be a “good fit” for their project.

Another spot where this helps is in gear acquisition: We are often asked to provide cameras or related equipment on a job that I don’t personally own. Usually I know another freelancer who has the piece of gear and will gladly rent it to me for a discounted rate if they are not using it on the shoot day. This is cheaper than getting the gear from a rental house and builds a good rapport with the other freelancer who will then, in turn, be more likely to refer me on a project that they can’t handle.
READ ON – More Tips-> Read more…

posted by Tracy Ready in creative,marketing,Opinion,social media,The Social Freelancer,TV – FILM – VIDEO – PHOTO,Video Production and have Comments (3)

The Freelance Life: Hitting the Reset Button

“In taking stock of ourselves, we should not forget that fear plays a large part in the drama of failure. That is the first thing to be dropped. Fear is a mental deficiency susceptible of correction, if taken in hand before it gains an ascendency over us. Fear comes with the thought of failure.” – Douglas Fairbanks

I am taking stock of myself this morning. This quote from Douglas Fairbanks reminded me of the mentally crippling nature of fear. It is the root of all inactivity, a sign of regression instead of progression.

It is important for me to take a step back, take stock of all I am doing, examining what’s working for me and what’s not.

Merging "work" with creative

Merging “work” with creative

I reached a point of overload at the end of 2014. Multiple projects have been started, some pieces complete, others needing more time and work. This blog, while rewarding to me on a psychological level, is only moderately successful in reaching larger audiences.

I struggle with the ups and downs of my production business as I have for 20 years now. The video and television production business has been rewarding. My career has taken me all over the world and given me a (mostly) steady income and incredible experiences that I wouldn’t trade for anything. But it is a changed business. For too many reasons to go into here, there is nothing but downward pressure on pricing for many of the services I have traditionally provided for my clients. I stay busy and am grateful for the work I have but it is less profitable than ever before. I have grown and moved on, learning and developing new skills that continue to enrich my life’s experience. Read more…

posted by Tracy Ready in marketing,Opinion,Psychology,social media,social networking,The Social Freelancer,TV – FILM – VIDEO – PHOTO,Writing and have Comments (6)

Why I want to drive a Ford to “Vanishing Texas”

This old blue workhorse, my 2004 Ford Expedition has carried me in and out of some strange places. Now this one is heaving a sigh every time I turn the key. It occurred to me, wouldn’t Ford like to sponsor “Vanishing Texas”?

"Vanishing Texas" - Coleman, Tx.

“Vanishing Texas” – Coleman, Tx.

My ongoing quest to document in pictures forgotten structures in Texas takes me to the edges of the state. My work in broadcast television and corporate video puts me in a lot of cities every year. What if I were to capture my truck in these varied locales and talk about it? Think that would be worth something to Ford?

Trace Relations say "Thanks!"

Trace Relations say “Thanks!”

Hashtag this on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram #FordSocial #FordVanishingTX – Help me get their attention! Thank you.

Support this project: Put some gas in the tank of my Ford, get a copy of my CD “Prosperity Street” by Trace Relations as my thanks! It’s full of “Texas Groove, guaranteed to improve your mood” HERE:
Vanishing Texas Photography on

"Vanishing Texas" - Coleman, Tx.

“Vanishing Texas” – Coleman, Tx.

YES, it’s a real project. In my travels, I am all over the state of Texas. It’s my mission along the way to find and photograph as many of the scenes of “Vanishing Texas” that I can in the next 2 years. Meanwhile, I will be releasing more youtube videos, posting photos to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram, and stories on this blog. I hope to culminate the whole deal with a book of photographs and stories from the road in 2017.

What I need is a sponsor and Ford Trucks would be a natural fit, in my mind. Read more…

posted by Tracy Ready in creative,history,Photography,Texas,Travel,TV – FILM – VIDEO – PHOTO,Uncategorized,youtube and have No Comments

Tuesday Tips: How to beat stage fright – Joe Kowan: TedTalks

Think you are scared getting up in front of people to speak, sing or perform? Singer – Songwriter Joe Kowan was petrified. He overcame his fear in a unique, musical way. This excellent TEDTalk is a lesson in perseverance and creativity, turning a weakness into strength.

Watch this! Joe delivers a laugh, an inspiring story about dealing with fear, and a funny folk tune, “The Stage Fright Song.”
YouTube Preview Image

View the original post on TED: Joe Kowan: How I beat stage fright #TED

Get to know Joe! Here: – Joe Kowan

“By having a song that explained what was happening to me, while it was happening, that gave the audience permission to think about it. They didn’t have to feel bad for me because I was nervous, they could experience that with me and we were all one big, happy, nervous, uncomfortable family” – Joe Kowan, about “The Stage Fright Song”

What do you think? Comment below, thanks.

Got a Suggestion, Comment or a Funny Story?
Please share in the comments section below. THANKS, Trace

Reaching Out: Why Good Content is Not Enough

Trace Ready "The Social Freelancer"

Trace Ready “The Social Freelancer”

Trace Ready is a Director of Photography, Writer, Producer and Vocalist based in Dallas, Texas. His band Trace Relations has released their debut studio CD “Prosperity Street”
Connect with Trace:

posted by Tracy Ready in creative,Music,Psychology,The Social Freelancer,youtube and have Comments (3)
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