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Entries in music career (15)


How Bands Can Break Into New Markets

One way to grow your music’s reach is to break into new markets. This could be taken a number of ways: new geographical areas (cities, states, countries, etc.) or simply new audiences in general (by demographic, interest, psychographic, etc). Before you try and expand your reach through new markets, it’s important to take a few things into consideration:

  • Return on Investment: What is the cost or effort required to break into this market? Is the return on investment worthwhile or would you be better off using those resources to grow an existing market?

  • Goals: What kind of role will this market play in your S.M.A.R.T.E.R Goals?

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5 Ways For The Working Musician to Make Money Online

Musicians like artists, graphic designers, film makers, or ony other type of freelancer as we all well know through YouTube and personal websites, work tirelessly on their online presence. This is now the forum where new artists get noticed, and frelance musicians and composers not only get work but also showcase talents and portfolios. For the archetype of the working musician as a jack of all trades, we all well know that gathering income from many sources is paramount to one’s financial and personal success. With all the work that one puts in to building up an online presence for the hope to get more gigs, more students, more downloads sold or whatever that may be, there is also secondary income sources that one can take advantage of from building traffic and a following, much like the savvy internet maketers strive for in their own commercial pursuits. Here are some approches in and out of the box.


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Amplage 0.6: Spotify - Life in a shadow, a non sustainable practice

You might think this is quite a rash and bold statement but I can guarantee you within the next 5 minutes of reading I’ll have it well justified. We all know that independent musicians from day one should be working themselves like a business through production, promotion, sales and shows. All of which incur some set up fee or ongoing costs. These costs vary depending on the size of the project or how smartly the independent has measured their market and are willing to invest. Even though spotify keep hush hush the amount of royalties that are paid through spotify, some speculation and leaks show what they are really paying artists.

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Music Career Ville - The Next App Store Hit? (Try it FREE)

So today I have something really cool for you…

It’s a free video game called “Music Career Ville”.

When you first play you get a guitar or piano or whatever and then it’s your job to start making killer music everyday.

(To master this game you should focus on shocking people with the awesomeness of your music)

Then when you have some really cool tunes you set up a simple website which is kind of like your shop…

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"I Want To Work In The Music Industry"

You know the saying: if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.  It’s not 100% accurate (there will always be aspects of your job that you’ll hate… I’m looking at you, accounting), but I do think people need to follow their passions and make careers out of them.

I meet lots of people who tell me they want to work in the music industry.  After all, music is something that’s easy to be passionate about, so why not make a career out of that?  Makes sense.

I get lots of people asking me advice on how to get started. I was just speaking with someone last week who graduated with an MBA who wanted to work in the industry, and he asked me “Where do I start? Who’s hiring? What kind of jobs are out there?”

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The Blueprint: A checklist for starting a band

If you’re a new band and serious about a career in music, here’s a quick list of things you need to have down.

I get a lot of musicians asking me about what they should do next or what they are missing from their band operations. I figured that it might be a good idea if put a basic blueprint together of things you should have down to effective pursue your career in music. This is not the “end all be all”, but it is definitely a good foundation.

I’ve arranged the items in order of a timeline, from recording to touring for an album…

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the myJazz club

Hi guys, im phil, and I always wanted to play jazz piano!

So, at 47 I bought a beautiful roland FP7 and started to teach myself.. it’s not the first time I done this! But, this time I was determined.. the digital age is fantastic, and I recorded everything.. along the way I discovered that the recordings were pretty cool if I added a backing track, and one thing led to another, I compiled them for my iPad, and bang! the myJazz club was formed 

I’ve tried a lot of ways to learn, but it’s hard to beat when you get sync’d up with the band.. go from a jazz piano novice to improvising like Evans or Monk.. check out the myJazz apps now at volume 3 with over 75 digital lessons with PDF support playing with the band

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A Fan-tastic Festive Quiz

A bit of light-hearted fun as the festive season hots up and the New Year fast approaches.

Imagine you are thinking about your year over a nice cup of coffee or a beer in the quiet corner of a bar. Tick the statements that accurately describe your thoughts (statements use ‘we’ and ‘our’ - if you’re a solo artist think ‘I’ and ‘my’). Be honest with yourself.

o       Over the year we generally only found new fans around gigs.

o       We haven’t got round to sorting out own web page.

o       We don’t have a fan email list yet.

o       If you look at the sites we use, it’s not very easy to get what we are about.

o       We spent a lot in the studio this year and feel disappointed with sales.

o       We tell our friends about our gigs but we’re not very good at communicating with our fans to create long lasting loyal relationships. In fact, if we’re totally honest, we’re not sure who our fans are.

o       We’re not very good at listening to anyone, particularly our fans (and also each other).

o       We do have a tendency to put our music out there and hope for the best.

o       We have a vague idea of where we want to get to.

o       We haven’t tried anything new this year so we are getting the same results.

o       Quite honestly, we don’t work well as a team; solo artist: I don’t stand up for my vision.

All/most ticked – You feel despondent and hopeless. Nothing seems to work. You seem to be going nowhere fast. Everything is a struggle. Fans have not been at the top of your priority list. You want someone to discover you and do all the work for you so you can just be left alone to make music. But you know the music industry has changed and you feel left behind and frustrated. You feel like you’re always banging your head against a brick wall. You know you can do better.

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Three Things All Independent Artists Should Do

The challenge of being an independent artist, especially when you’re starting off is that you have no one but yourself to answer to. This of course can be both a good and bad thing. For one, if you’re driven - you can do many things very fast because you don’t have to delegate. On the other hand, some days, nothing happens at all because no one but yourself is responsible for your career (and you decided to just stay at home and comment on all your friend’s Facebook pages.) A very real issue is that most of what we do as artists does not pay financially (at least not immediately). Most of it is groundwork, most of it is the business side of our careers. This of course makes us comes to terms…

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The Third Ring: How To Measure Success

So just how good do you have to be to make a career out of your music?

Damn good.

Any advice that I, or anyone else, give out on how to advance your career will only help you do so if the music is amazing.  That’s why it’s important to beware of any books or courses that guarantee success, because without outstanding music, the advice won’t do you much good. You may see minimal success, sure, but it probably won’t last or grow.

So how do you measure outstanding? I was discussing my theory on this topic over the weekend with a talented local songwriter, and I thought I’d share it with the rest of you. I know, ‘theories’ can be boring, but stick with me…

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CTRL - How Much Are You Willing To Give Up? 

Control. It’s not an easy thing. Everyone wants it in one way or another, and it can do strange things to people. Sometimes, though, it can be difficult to know how much to seek, and when.

Take, for example, the relationship between artist and the other players in the recording process.  If we look at it from an “assembly line” point of view, the musicians come into the studio, play their parts, and leave.  The mix engineer is responsible for capturing those sounds properly and mixing them.  Then, he/she hands it off to the producer, who plays with the sounds captured and potentially adds new ones.  Once that’s done, it’s handed off to the mastering engineer, and the final product is ready for press.

Of course, this is far from a real world scenario.  Along the way, the artists want to give input into how the record is mixed, produced, and even mastered.  As a guitar/bass/keyboard/percussion player, your expertise may lie primarily in playing your instrument, but as a musician or member of a band, musicianship extends to artistic expression on a larger scale.

This can lead to disagreements, and when it comes time to figuring out who has the ‘final say,’ it’s a matter of role definition and – you guessed it – control.

So how do you tackle this?

It’s important to remember that everyone has their strengths and weaknesses.  Identifying your strengths is often much easier, but it’s the latter that is often more important.  The main role of a producer is to take the songs he or she is presented with, work out an overall ‘vision’ for the album, and make the two meet.  That’s a difficult task that not everyone can achieve, and even MORE difficult to define.

However, if you recognize someone who has experience or expertise in this specific, it’s vital that you allow them creative space to work.  This doesn’t mean allowing them ‘free reign,’ but it does mean that they’re the experts who’s ‘say’ should hold more weight.

That may sound scary, but in reality, it all comes down to trust.  If you chose a producer whose work you respect and trust, you should feel comfortable letting them take the lead.  If you don’t, you might want to re-evaluate your choice.

This applies to other aspects of your career, too.  In general, you should be the leader of your career at all times.  Just make sure that you leave room for others to be in control from time to time, in the areas where THEY shine, and you’ll find that everyone will benefit.

This article originally published here on Your Band’s Best Friend

Learn more about the author here


5 Tips For Managing Your Work Load As An Independent Artist

So, you’re living the ultimate indepenedent artist lifestyle. You write and record constantly releasing something cool every few weeks. You rehearse with the band and throw gigs regularly. You draw great album art and design your own t-shirts. You make wicked YouTube videos, and write great blog posts. You Tweet and Facebook and keep up with some great blogs and inspirational artists. You take care of business, track merchandise levels and order new stock in time. Oh yeah, and you take care of your physical health, have a happy relationship and a day job.

How exactly are you supposed to do that?

1. Keep it manageable and consistent

Divide your work. Keep it regular and consistent. Read and respond to blogs, tweets and facebook posts when you’re having your morning coffee. Walk or jog to work. Have an allocated evening for songwriting, rehearsing and business. Edit and post videos on Sundays. Don’t do anything on Saturdays unless you have a gig. Doing a little bit every day accumulates over time. Keep it steady and manageable instead of burning out.

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The Science of Becoming a Rock Star

Working with both well-known and unsigned artists for over a decade, I’ve spent a lot of time pondering why some people succeed in music while others fail. And though this might sound strange, there are a few physics ideas that can help you think differently about how great music careers are made.

Rule #1: Quantum Events = Music Success

Building a music career is different than learning how to sing or play an instrument. Practice makes you slightly better with your voice or instrument every day – over years, as you put in your 10,000 hours of work, you steadily move from novice to pro (see Figure 1). To be a truly great and lasting artist, you must master your voice or instrument – a lot of this work is done alone or with bandmates. But mastering an instrument isn’t the same as building a music career, and understanding the difference will improve your chance of success.

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7 Words Every Artist NEEDS To Know: Publishing

If you’re serious about making this business of music your full time career, then one of the first things you need to understand is the lingo of the business! Today we will discuss, in plain English, the top 7 terms you need to understand about publishing. Something important to remember about publishing is, this is how songwriters earn their living. If you are an artist who only records other peoples music, you are usually not entitled to the publishing income. However, if you are an artist who rights some or all of your own material, or a writer/ composer (beat-maker for the rap producers), this is where ALL of your money is coming from! So without any more chatter, here is:

7 Words Every Artist NEEDS To Know: Publishing

1. Copyright
- Copyrights are the rights given to you under US law that states, once you create an original work (known as Intellectual Property), you are the only one who is allowed to profit from it for a specified amount of time (for most of you, that would be the rest of your life, plus 70 years). Now, by law, as soon as you put the song in a form that anyone else can hear it or read it, it is considered copywritten. The question is, how do you prove you did it first? Although there are a lot of suggested ideas out there on how this can be done (ie. mail it to yourself and don’t open it, upload it to a website so the date is saved, etc…) they are ALL wrong. The ONLY way to ensure that your music is protected and will stand up in court when you sue someone for stealing your song, is to register the song with the US Library of Congress. Once submitted, your copyright is secure, and you can rest assured that your music is safe.

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