An interview with Rock Star, SF Bay Area Rock Icon, published author and Renaissance Man Greg Kihn, on what he’s been up to:
One of the cool things about living in the San Francisco Bay area is that it is the home base for rock-and-roll star, SF Bay Area Hall of Fame DJ and published author: Greg Kihn. With a career as a musician with #1 hits such as “Jeopardy” and “Breakup Song”, as a SF Hall of Fame DJ, Greg is a bona fide rock and roll professor. He has freely shared his vast rock and roll knowledge with his fans over the years. Greg stays in close touch with his loyal fan base and is very active in the social media scene with his blog on www.gregkihn.com and on his social media accounts Facebook, Twitter and Saepta.
Let me begin by saying that I am a huge fan of rock music that came out of the 80s, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and of course, The Greg Kihn Band which exploded on the SF Bay area music scene and put the iconic Berserkley Records on the map. I am fortunate to be good friends with Greg Kihn and we had a chance to chat and catch up on what he’s been up to.
So Greg, how are you and what have you been up to?
I’m doing good Wes. Having fun! Enjoying life! I’ve got a lot of projects going on that I enjoy working on. Plus, I’m spending time with the grand kids. And I’ve almost caught up on sleep after all of the years of getting up at 4am to be a morning drive-time radio DJ.
What are some of these “Projects” you’re talking about?
Well, I can’t say too much because some are Top Secret, but what I can talk about is: I’m working with a LA film company on a Greg Kihn documentary; my next novel “Painted Black” published by Open Road Media is to be released this Spring 2015 (follow up to “Rubber Soul”); And my one of my most recent projects has been my work as the Emissary for Saepta, a cool new social media voting and polling website (www.saepta.com) that’s here in the Silicon Valley.
You sound very busy. What’s this new novel “Painted Black” about?
“Painted Black” is my new novel about the murder of Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones. It’s a follow up to “Rubber Soul” and it again includes good old Dust Bin Bob. I’ll be giving out details on “Painted Black” real soon so check back with me @ gregkihn.com
Sounds good, I liked “Rubber Soul”, I’m definitely going to get “Painted Black”!
Greg, you mentioned social media earlier. I see that you’re pretty active online. How do you keep the social media engagement level so high with your fans year after year?
Content is KING! The fans have to be compelled to return to your website on a regular basis. How do you do that? Again, posting good content will get them to come back. They really need to find your content and blog posts interesting enough to read & share with other fans. The posts need to be provocative, funny and a fair amount of wit. A good friend, Guy Kawasaki said, “Keep your fan enchanted”. It’s good advice! I always try to keep my fans interested and engaged so they will come back to my web site and stay a fan.
How can you tell if your content is what the fans want?
My Manager and friend Joel Turtle told me when I very first started that “I should never do an “Act” or be something I’m not just because people want it. Just be yourself your fans will love you for you.” I’ve taken that to heart. I just go out there. Be myself and hope that people like me and my music and what I have to say. Online I try to write blogs about the way I feel on anything and everything that comes to mind, music, sports, science, current issues, what’s happening in the Bay area and I hope that it coincides with my fan’s main interests. I can tell if I’ve connected with the fan’s online by the comments, number of likes & shares or by the votes on each of my SaeptaPolls.
Greg, you’ve mentioned Saepta a couple of times now. What is Saepta? What’s a SaeptaPoll?
Asking questions is in our DNA. Who’s the best guitar player ever? What’s your favorite Beatles' song? How do you buy your music?" I love asking questions and I also like reaching out to my fans to see what their opinions are. That’s why I’ve teamed up with Saepta. Saepta is a really cool way for anybody to create an online poll as well as a place to go vote on current issues. Initially I used the SaeptaPolls to spice up my social media sites. But, as time went by it became more and more a part of my blogs and my social media experience. I use it all the time and I want my fans, and my fans of fans, to love and use Saepta as much as I do. In fact, I am so passionate about Saepta that I have signed on as Emissary. So when the aliens come and they say “Take us to the Emissary of Saepta”, that's me! My first act as Emissary is to join forces with Saepta to bring you a chance to win a very cool Holiday giveaway! I'm giving away a Greg Kihn Band autographed Guitar!
(You can enter and get more details by clicking enter below.)
Saepta sounds like a good fan engagement tool. That’s pretty cool that you‘re giving away a signed Greg Kihn guitar. I’ll definitely be posting a SaeptaPoll once were done with this interview.
So, what advice do you offer to an aspiring musician today?
Again content is king! The fans want new content all the time. Whether it’s a song, a video, a show, a blog, a picture, anything that engages your fans is content. Also, one of the most important things is that you’re true to yourself and that you believe in what you’re doing. If you’re just doing something to be cool or successful and rich, it probably won’t happen. But if you’re doing it because you really love what you’re doing and that you’re passionate about it than you will find true success.
In closing the music, the shows, the books and the web content you have produced consistently over the years are all appreciated by your fans. There are some really good lessons to be learned from your career and the content you’ve produced. I really admire the time you spend and the ways that you try to reach out and engage your fans, whether it’s through blog posts or these new SaeptaPolls, again it’s greatly appreciated by me and I’m sure by all Greg Kihn fans alike.
Well thank you so much Wes and thanks to all my fans. I really appreciate the support. And as always it’s great talking to you.
And don’t forget to enter the Greg Kihn guitar Kihntest!
Kihntest Information here:
(Click on link)
(Click on link)