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How You Can Contribute To MusicThinkTank

Anyone can join the discussion and contribute relevant articles to Music Think Tank.  Begin by signing up and then logging in to publish your posts directly to MTT Open. Please make sure that your posts are in the proper format before posting (see previous posts) and that there are minimal errors such as grammar or spelling. Popular articles are occasionally moved to the front of the site. Contributors own and operate this blog (more info).

Friday
Nov292013

Thanksgivukkah Think Tank: An Industry Discussion Between Two Jewish Musicians  

This week, we celebrate Thanksgivukkah, a rare occurrence where Thanksgiving eve and the first day of Hanukkah land on the same day. So rare, in fact, that we won’t see another Thanksgivukkah for another 70,000 years! This is not something we can’t afford to miss… This is it people. It’s now or never!!

For this rare occasion, we’ve partnered up two of our favorite Jewish musicians, and thrown them together in a virtual room to talk about how their heritage has shaped their lives and their musical endevors. Michelle Citrin (pictured left) is the star of the hit YouTube sensations, “20 Things to do with Matzah” and “Hanukkah Lovin’”, which to date, have received millions of hits, ranking in the top 20 most viewed music videos in 2008, and have been featured on Good Morning America, Yahoo.com, CBS Evening News, as well as The New York Times.

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Wednesday
Nov272013

Holiday Gift Guide: Digital Recording Gear

Help the musician in your life capture the spontaneity and energy of their live shows (and make some extra money!) with these recording tools that will help them get the job done.

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Monday
Nov252013

How To Promote Your Music - The Ultimate Guide

Hello again, my Music Think Tankers. Today I’m going to look at 6 HUGE things you can do to better promote your music.

Now before you roll your eyes and think I’m going to tell you to “create a Facebook account and promote through social media” or to “get your music in as many places as possible,” listen up. This guide is going to be full of actionable content and advice that won’t be found in every post on the subject that simply rehashes information the writer has heard and not tried out themselves.

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Saturday
Nov232013

MusicThinkTank.com | Musicians, Should You EVER Pay-To-Play?

Thursday
Nov212013

Indie Artists: Expectations vs Reality

To “use” the internet in marketing themselves, indie artists are required to learn “how,” then spend time implementing their online plan. There is no secret. There is no sure thing. There are no companies which provide indie artists success, only those that can help. Practice, loving the lifestyle, enjoying fans, and using technology in various mixes - with a dose of luck - are still your best chance for success.

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Tuesday
Nov192013

The Cost of Free

By Athena Butler

When it comes to recorded music, today’s consumers enjoy a free ride and seem to have all the answers.  Song sharing is there for the taking and, in any case, the old music sales model is archaic. But if out with the old and in with the new is stylish in music, the same is not true of music recordings.

For the business, it seems, free is good. However, the decline of recorded music sales has been catastrophic since 2001, when piracy became rampant and the single song Apple economy banished the album. Now, hope for the sector requires a giant leap of faith. In the meantime, the tough job of finding new ways to compensate for this loss of profits falls to the record companies. It may appear that artists are gaining more exposure as music changes hands often and easily. But is the moneymaking of old within the reach of the business?

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Monday
Nov182013

Musicians, Should You EVER Pay-To-Play? 

Payola, in one form or another, is as old as the music business:

Labels pay radio stations to broadcast their music, producers pay DJs to spin their records in the club, and promoters ask live bands to pay-to-play at their event.

And it’s always been a hot topic amongst musicians.

So if you’re an artist, should you ever have to pay-to-play?

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Saturday
Nov162013

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: 6 Steps to Building Your Brand on Pinterest

Friday
Nov152013

Bundle up, it's cold out there.

Just got back from a music seminar down in Los Angeles. For those of you who haven’t been there in a while, it hasn’t changed much. It is still the home of some of the most talented people on the planet, it still takes an hour and a half to get anywhere, the sky is still grayish brown, and just like all industry towns, it’s better to be poor some place else.

The seminar was just like all seminars, you go searching for the golden ticket, and you leave with a shopping bag of glossy fliers and an overwhelming sense of bewilderment.  Like Vegas, but without the hookers.

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Wednesday
Nov132013

The New Napster: Mobile File-Sharing

As the rise of mobile messaging apps take over the current mobile user population, the ways fans interact with music are changing. Historically, file-sharing takes place over the desktop computer through a P2P software such as BitTorrent. The user opens the music files into iTunes and they have expanded their music library for free.

Many mobile users are starting to figure out how to download music through mobile messaging applications and their smartphones. Transitioning from desktop file-sharing to mobile file-sharing will take a bit of time for users to catch up but the new Napster is already out there.

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Tuesday
Nov122013

6 Steps to Building Your Brand on Pinterest

Your goal is to be a full time musician, right? Or maybe you already quit your day job and this is all you do. Guess what– you’re not just a musician, you’re a business, so start acting like one. It’s time to convert your Pinterest account to a business account, if you haven’t already. There are perks to having a business account over a personal account, like analytics tools and coming soon, promoted pins.

Why Pinterest? Pinterest gives you an opportunity to further build your brand image, show your fans what inspires you or what you find interesting, and helps drive traffic back to your other sites, like your webstore, newsletter signup, or other socials (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blog etc.) It’s a great place to build your lifestyle branding.

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Sunday
Nov102013

MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: 6 Ways To Get More People To Your Shows

Thursday
Nov072013

The Mystery of Nostalgia - Making Music Sound Better for Pretty Much Your Whole Life 

We all have those songs that make our spine tingle every time they come on. The moment they attached themselves to us like a parasite in our brains comes flooding back to us with the same effervescence as ever. Whether it is good or bad feelings it brings, the song is no longer just a song written by a band, it is a song written into your life. It is a trigger to inspire reflection and will forever hold this power over you. 

Technically nostalgia is defined as, “A sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, typically for a period or place with happy personal associations” OR “the evocation of these feelings or tendencies.” 

But that definition doesn’t mention magic. My definition would. My definition of musical nostalgia would mention some outer-body stuff. That inexplicable moment where everything else halts and fuzzy feelings collide with a strong melody, a good friends smile, and boom — something is burned inside you forever. But there’s a reason they don’t let me define things. 

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Wednesday
Nov062013

6 Ways to Get More People to Your Shows

Do you sometimes feel that your band’s draw is languishing? Are you tired of seeing the same people at your shows and want to play to a new crowd, even in your hometown?

If you’re like most musicians, you know that you absolutely can do better, that you have more fans out there than who actually show up at at the venue, and despite always receiving positive feedback, you don’t know why more people aren’t showing up. Here are some tips on building some momentum back into your tour dates so you can increase your band’s draw:

1. Find a Different Angle for The Show: It’s easier to get more people to show up if it’s your band’s first show, when you’re releasing a new album, it’s a tour kick off, or when it’s your final gig. Obviously, it’s because your fans realize those as special occasions and want to be there.

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