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Music Think Tank Open

Anybody (no really anybody) can contribute anything relevant to this page…All mp3s should be posted on the MTT radio page. If you cannot find your post here, your article may have been moved to the MTT homepage.

If you would like Music Think Tank to publish your contribution, please read our posting guidelines and our posting advice.


Me and the Music Industry… A series

I must say it is puzzling indeed to be a part of this living organism called the Music Industry. I have, for many years, tried to understand it by purchasing books, magazines, and information but I did not get any closer to the goal.

Hum, it is something that alludes me, as it is an ever changing being. Just a mere 10 years and all that was the music industry is now no more, and all that will be the industry is a mystery. Wow!

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Launching of Songwriter Connect to Help Talented Songwriters Worldwide

Songwriter Connect has been launched, with this platform already having several members who are successful songwriters with top hits in the US and Canada. Slots are filling fast as the platform will only be accepting 500 members.

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Musicians Make Themselves Fail. "Someone else will clean it up."

Ever work in a restaurant or known someone who does? There’s this thing that goes on, a mentality, that when there is a spill on the floor most employees will just walk over it. Maybe they are super busy, or maybe they just don’t care. Either way there is one thing they are telling themselves. “Someone else will clean it up.”

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Do The Math: Indie vs Major – A Rap Breakdown

Too many times aspiring rappers see the artists with major label deals who seemingly don’t have to do their own hand to hand promo. This leads the unsigned artist in to mistakenly thinking that face to face interaction with fans is unnecessary. The majority of unsigned artists believe that the formula for success is:

  • good internet numbers;
  • major label artist features;
  • radio play; and
  • tour dates opening up for bigger acts


If the above were true – then every artist with some money and a lil sense would be successful. However, we who work with music everyday know that this is far from true. I’m sure that most people reading this know artists and/or indie labels who’ve spent millions to put the above pieces in place – yet never see any success or get a real return on investment.

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Who shapes our culture? Do you?

By Casey Rae, Vice President for Policy and Education, Future of Music Coalition

Remember the good old days of going to the record shop to pick up a CD or cassette and spending the next couple of months really getting to know the music because you knew precisely how many mowed lawns it took to to buy it? Well, maybe you don’t remember those days, and perhaps they weren’t all that great. For fans, the digital age means being able to access music pretty much anywhere at any time. But what does it mean for musicians who have had to adapt to evolving technology, changing business models and consumer preference?

That’s what hundreds of the brightest minds in music, technology, policy and law will aim to uncover at the 14th Future of Music Policy Summit in Washington, DC. But unlike other conferences where big shot suits industrysplain how the music business should function, the Future of Music confab puts the artist perspective front and center. Of course, there will also be labels and techheads and lawyers and policymakers in the mix. But the point is for these folks to hear directly from artists about their experience in today’s topsy-turvy landscape for creativity and commerce.

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DIY Exists, You Just Don't Know What It Is: You CAN Do It All Yourself by Mary Lemanski

When I read Kyle Williams’ article, “DIY Musician Debunked: Of Course You Don’t Do It All Yourself” here on Music Think Tank last week, I could not understand why such an irresponsible piece of writing was getting so much attention when the author obviously did absolutely no research on what DIY is, it’s history, or the collective aspect of the DIY philosophy.  

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Songwriter Alert: What Is A Publishing Deal? and Do I Really Need One?

      The term “publishing”, most simply, means the business of song copyrights.  A songwriter owns 100% of his song copyright and all the related publishing rights until the writer signs those rights away. Under the law, copyright (literally, the right to make and sell copies) automatically vests in the author or creator the moment the expression of an idea is “fixed in a tangible medium.” (i.e., the moment it is written down or recorded on tape.)  With respect to recorded music, there are really two copyrights: a copyright in the musical composition owned by the songwriter and a copyright in the sound of the recording owned by the recording artist (but usually transferred to the record company when a record deal is signed).

      A writer owns the copyright in his work the moment he writes it down or records it, and by law can only transfer those rights by signing a written agreement to transfer them. Therefore, a songwriter must be wary of any agreement he or she is asked to sign. Although it is not necessary, it is advisable to place a notice of copyright on all copies of the work. This consists of the symbol “c” or the word “copyright”, the author’s name, and the year in which the work was created, for example: ” (c) John Doe 2014.”

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Midem’s 2014 finalist Muzieo is a New App that revolutionized how people experience music from smartphone

Music is an integral part of the lives of so many mobile phone users that playing a song and attending the artist concert all at one click should have occurred long before now.  From music industry executive and entrepreneur Leland Robinson comes the next great app Muzieo which bridges the lack of fan experiences provided for smartphone users today. Muzieo is an iOS 8 app that allows adopters to receive perks just from playing songs they like, so that they can easily explore opportunities to connect with artist and their music. One of the most exciting and innovative features of Muzieo is that fans can receive discounts on concert tickets and merchandise by playing an artist’s songs on their mobile phone.

This outstanding new mobile music experience engine is bound to revolutionize the way fans experience music, but but Muzieo needs your support.  The Muzieo team has sponsored a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to raise needed funds; supporters may receive valuable perks to learn more please visit 

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UK Music Jobs: a boom in creative opportunities

Finding paid UK music jobs as a creative audio professional has at times been an uphill struggle. Just like musicians, audio professionals (sound engineers, sound designers, mix/mastering engineers etc.) are often highly skilled and highly under paid. It is difficult to think of another industry in which highly educated and skilled workers are routinely expected to work for free or in unstable or very low paid positions. Audio professionals are usually highly passionate and driven about their work and often take on unpaid projects or jobs, especially early on, in the hope of building a portfolio strong enough to find regular income. Getting a well-paid UK music job is tough and demands patience and determination to succeed.

Over the past few decades the music industry has profoundly changed and there remains a degree of uncertainty regarding future distribution models and monetisation strategies. We have all seen the rise of home recording consumer technology and the decline of the traditional studio. Modern Digital Audio software is increasingly produced as much for the hobbyist as for the professional.

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A Device for All Musicians

Nowadays, if you buy a digital pedalboard, you have access to a limited number of effects. In order to increase the musical possibilities, you have to buy more devices. Besides that, the sound processing industry is very focused on guitar, bass and synths, which excludes a lot of musicians. A project currently on Kickstarter promises to to change this. Last week, the MOD Duo was launched.

Install effects from independent developers

The first big feature of the MOD Duo is that it allows you to install new effects from a cloud repository. The effects follow a standard that is already used in desktop computers, so there’s already a stablished community of developers working on them. The MOD Cloud already contains more than a hundred effects, and using an open SDK, new effects can be created and installed, even if it’s not published on the Cloud.


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Music Content Company, Able Baker, Launches in NYC

Industry-renowned Executive Producers of Music, Peter Gannon and Jessica Dierauer have joined forces to launch Able Baker, a new music content company based in New York City. Able Baker, whose name is taken from the first two letters of the original phonetic alphabet, offers original composition, music supervision and licensing, and is differentiated by their offering of music strategy/consultation and content production across TV, film, digital and non-traditional disciplines for both the advertising and entertainment industries. The company will be a connector between brands and musicians, partnering with them to create music for content and content for music, protecting creative ideas and strategically aligning all parties involved in music production.

Able Baker was born out of our love of music, and we’re passionate about making great music content in several rapidly-evolving industries,” said Gannon. “The overwhelming consensus from all parties involved is that music is a critical piece of the process, so we’re really excited to see what happens when we put it first. We’ve engineered so many collaborations between artists and brands in recent years and are looking to further this successful trajectory with Able Baker.”

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Complete Guide to Compression By Rob Jones

Nearly half a century after the introduction of one of the most famous audio compressors in existence, the UREI/ Universal Audio 1176 Peak Limiter, Producertech are proud to introduce our Complete Guide to Compression, taught by Course Director and experienced producer Rob Jones. A graduate of the renowned Tonmeister Course at The University of Surrey in the UK, Rob has experience in production from both sides of the mixing desk and, as an Ableton Certified Trainer, is ideally qualified to give students a thorough understanding of both the technical and practical aspects of one of the most useful tools in mixing.

Much used but rarely fully understood, compression (alongside equalisation) is found on every channel on practically every mixing desk, as a default plugin in every DAW and on every record commercially produced. As such, it is one of the most important effects when mixing, allowing the producer to maintain complete control over the loudness and character of parts, to ensure the mix is as tight and professional sounding as it can be.

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Eyal Levi's 5 Tips for Recording on the Road

Contributed by Eyal Levi, acclaimed heavy metal producer for Audiohammer Studios, and music industry expert who has toured the world with his signed band, Dååth. As a part of the Audiohammer family, Eyal Levi has worked with Billboard charting bands like Whitechapel, August Burns Red, Black Dahlia Murder and more. Originally posted on Bandsintown Artist Blog: 

Tip # 1 - Make it convenient

Setting up and tearing down a rig every time will eventually make you not want to go through the trouble. The less steps toward recording the better. Get a simple interface so you can record guitar DIs (the Apogee Jam is tiny, sounds great and is USB-powered), and set up a writing template in your DAW so you don’t have to spend time fiddling with software when inspiration strikes. Have plugins for virtual drums, bass, and synths all set up and ready to go (I like EZdrummer, Trilian, and Massive respectively). Purchase length appropriate cables. You don’t need 100ft guitar cables. I’ll repeat this later but put as much as you can in a rack. The less you have to plug in, the better.

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New e-book release: How to pimp your practice room: German music producer's tips for successful live recordings

Star producer Moses Schneider, inspiration for the Strokes founder Gordon Raphael, is releasing a second edition of “the alternative workbook” as an e-book with sound samples.

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