Students at Berklee College of Music can now learn the ins and outs of an independent record label through the college’s new label, Berklee Internet Radio Network Cooperative Records (birnCORE). birnCORE records some of today’s best independent artists who visit Berklee’s campus performance facilities, from the 200-seat Red Room @ Cafe 939 to the college’s state-of-the-art internet radio studio. Student engineers mix the albums to the artists’ specifications. Released digitally, birnCORE LPs are priced to sell at about $5.
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Entries in record label (8)
Aspiring music artists have a plethora of opportunities to be “discovered” in today’s YouTube-driven industry. Previously, an artist had to be discovered and signed to a record label to gain access to the music market. Even after signing a record deal, artists were left at the mercy of the traditional media to become noticed, which was prohibitively expensive.
Rejection. It can sting. Whether it is a promoter or a record label who doesn’t want to give you the opportunity to shine or it is a critic who writes a bad review of your music, the reality is that sooner or later, you’re going to face rejection. How you deal with that rejection can ultimately determine your success.
I find it hard to understand why people constantly want to be entertained all the time. One of my former teachers said, “we have enough entertainment for a lifetime.” But the thing is, its not just entertainment, its ignorant entertainment that we choose to be consumed by within the hip-hop world. Before I sound like I’m trying to sound “above that” or “unbothered by that”, I LOVE ignorant entertainment just as much as the next person.
If you were presented with the opportunity to pitch your band directly to the Chief A&R representative for Capital Records, what would you say? If there was a venture capitalist looking to invest into the dreams of one band, how would you convince them to choose you? If your favorite band was in town and looking for an opener, what would you tell the promoter about your act?
Being able to pitch your band is one of the most important steps in being able to book shows, secure sponsorships, get a booking agent/manager, receive press, and even to getting on a label. It’s also one of the areas that I see independent musicians struggling with the most. Even though I have a disclaimer on LastStopBooking.com that we are not accepting submissions, I still receive about 50-100 EPK submissions and query letters per week. 90% of these sound the same: the band describes themselves as having “great music,” and they almost always say they are different than other artists because they are “hardworking.”
Here at Music Without Labels we do our best at providing you with some of the top independent music worldwide, which is why I’ve decide to show some love and promote the main industry that helps manage these artists’ insanely busy music schedules; Independent Record Labels! Now this list is in no particular order so their is no hierarchy of which label is better than the next. This is an independent community so it’s our job as indie people to promote quality independent music equally together. We will continue to promote the Independent Record Labels in this new series. Hope this comes as a great reference, and please stay tuned for more:
It is a known fact that getting signed to a major record label doesn’t guarantee success for an artist, but the odds greater or lower vs. staying indie? Moses Avalon explores the “Vegas Odds” of the record deal.
A look at the pros and cons of both indie and major record label contracts as well as some of the common, yet most confusing terms used throughout the contracts