Moon - February
Back to The
The world has gone crazy over podcasting, and I have
It has been said recently that Podcasting is growing
faster than anything in history.
To think that each and every one of us can become a
radio programmer and people can subscribe to our taste in music is just simply
amazing. One night, at about 2am when I should have been asleep, I was updating
my MySpace.com page (www.myspace.com/gillimoon) with some new photos
and adding friends. You know, the typical business transactions of the new music
paradym shift called "artist empowerment". Getting Friends on MySpace has just
become my new answer for worldwide domination!
Anyway... there I was adding friends when suddenly I
saw Madonna was asking me to be her friend. I thought, heck this is probably
just some fan site of Madonna, but okay I'll accept the invitation. Click.
Madonna is now one of my 800 MySpace.com friends. But I was curious. I decided
to go to her page. There she was, the real deal, with lots and lots of info on
her new album which I'm very excited to hear. I was more excited when I saw,
center page, a little icon saying "Podcast Madonna's new album". "Podcast", what
does that mean? I immediately wanted a podcast just like Madonna, so I went
directly to the company hosting her podcast, gcast.com. From there I began
setting up my own podcast, not even knowing what it was, but ever so curious.
gcast.com then forwarded me to garageband.com, which is their current host for
indie artists. I had an account with garageband.com and so it was time to get my
hands dirty. It was now 2.40am
I spent the next hour dabbling in uploading mp3s, and
creating 3 podcasts under my profile. One about my own music which is at www.gillimoon.com/download. One for my warrior
girl music and females on fire artists at www.warriorgirlmusic.com and one for Songsalive!
elite members at www.songsalive.org. You can subscribe to all
three podcasts at www.gillimoon.com/download.
So what is podcasting...?
A Podcast is recorded audio
distributed via RSS. Podcasting allows anyone who wants to broadcast to reach a
huge potential audience online. More info: Wikipedia's podcasting entry at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Podcast. You need
an application, commonly called a "podcatcher" to download and organize
Garageband.com, which allows artists to create their
own podcasts free of charge, has a very easy step-by-step guide on setting up
your own podcast. It's like "podcasts for dummies" and that fits right in with
me because I hate reading manuals and guides when getting into new technology. I
am too impatient. They sock it to ya in one minute. Here's what they say about
"If you don't know what "podcasting" is, don't worry!
You're not the first to ask. Podcasting is a new trend, and there are a lot of
people who haven't heard of it or don't know exactly what it is. Basically,
podcasting is like blogging, but with audio. ("Blogging," which stands for "web
logging," means maintaining a web-based journal). Podcasting is a combination
of: a new capability for listeners not only to download an audio file (MP3) from
the internet, but to subscribe to receive future audio files from the same
source or "channel," and a growing trend of amateur DJs creating their own
"radio shows" as giant MP3 files published on the internet, including both music
and talk. Podcasting is very significant for independent music for several
reasons. First, it has fueled the rise of amateur DJs who are helping ordinary
consumers discover music that they might never otherwise hear on the radio,
These amateur DJs help level the playing field for all musicians. Second,
podcasting also allows consumers to "subscribe to a band" and receive future
material (or messages) from that band -- just as if the band had their own radio
station. Third, podcasting addresses a new generation of youth - "Generation i"
- who don't own radios or CD players, but who own computers and iPods. For this
new generation, podcasting is what FM radio has been to past
So,... with this small but power-packed piece of
knowledge, I began to investigate podcasting further, and I have found that it
truly is an amazing phenomenon.
The startup podcaster...
Garageband seems to be the way to go for the startup
podcaster. Bob Baker, fellow warrior-boy and trusty friend who continues to
think the same thing when I do (way to go Bob!) wrote about Podcasting in his
e-newsletter: "I went ahead and tested the service by setting up a page there
for my Artist Empowerment Podcast. I posted one of my earlier shows plus a newer
one with more spoken word marketing tips and some killer songs by Chris
Gallagher, Heidi McCurdy and Denny Blake. The GarageBand podcast deal is pretty
quick and easy to use. In addition to basic podcasting, you can also record
podcasts by phone, encourage other sites to embed your podcast onto their pages,
and have fans sign up for email alerts. I think I'll combine this new Gcast page
with my own hosted Artist Empowerment Radio podcast page (which I also publish
at no cost using a combination of Blogger, FeedBurner and OurMedia), in addition
to a lengthier streaming version at Live365. You should probably do the same
with your original music: publish podcasts via two or three various targeted,
high-traffic sites. The more places people can access your songs, the better
your chances of connecting with fans. However, be aware of the pros and cons of
making your songs available to others who produce podcasts. Check out this
GarageBand BBS Forum post by Domenic Scarcella. It does a good job of explaining
the difference between Direct Plays vs. Playlists vs. Podcasts."
Check out Bob Baker's Podcast at http://www.garageband.com/user/TheBuzzFactor/podcast/main,
and his website is TheBuzzFactor.com and http://MusicPromotionBlog.com/
Samantha Murphy, independent artist and podcast
pioneer, (who I mention below), creates her Podcast with any recording software
(her preference is Protools). Read below on how she does that. The cool things
about having your own Podcast is...
- You can have it embedded in your own artist
website, your MySpace.com page, anywhere you can manipulate the html code of a
webpage you host on the Internet.
- Fans can listen to your podcast either through the Internet, there and then from your
webpage, or download the mp3s to their computers through a podcatcher download
the podcast to their ipods through a podcatcher subscribe to the RSS feed so
that every time you as the podcast host change your show, it automatically
updates on their computer or ipod (this is the coolest part!)
- Fans can also take the html code of your podcast
and put it on their sites, thereby adding to the ultimate goal of spreading your
music far and wide. Talk about viral marketing at it's best!
The pros and cons...
But what are the pros and cons of that? What are the
ramifications of spreading music, what with the new digital download rights
arena, the RIAA's feelings on this, and well just how do artists get paid? Isn't
that what we want in this new music revolution? For artists to finally be in
control of being paid? I mean, Napster was certainly a great catalyst for
change, where the consumer became in control of what they wanted to listen to,
but it opened up a can of worms on how to allocate royalties for the artist. It
has been suggested that Napster created a phenomenon where consumers thought
music should just be free. We all understand the concept of sharing music in
order to get the word out there, but at a certain point shouldn't the artist be
paid for their hard work and creativity? So how can podcasting help the artist?
I attended and spoke at the Rockrgrl Music Conference (http://www.rockrgrl.com) last weekend in Seattle WA,
which was a very inspiring weekend for me. I went to a few workshops. I happened
to sit in on a really great Panel discussion about Podcasting. Oh.my.god i'm so
inspired to embrace this new technology. I have already developed 3 podcasts in
the last week. I took notes. I was writing like crazy, because I was eating up
every word they said. Actually the panel was also about blogging, which included
discussion groups like Myspace.com and where Napster was going, so I'll entrance
you with a little update on the world wide web phenomenon for music
On the panel were Panos Panay from Sonicbids (another
trusty friend who picked up my Newsweek interview while lying on a Cyprus beach
and loved that i mentioned Sonicbids! What a small world!). Also on the panel
were Jeff Heiman from Play Network, Michelle Santosuosso from Napster, Elise
Nordling from Soma FM and Samantha Murphy, artist/podcasting pioneer. Samantha
seemed to know exactly what podcasting was about and as an info junkie like me,
she just sort of took the ball and ran with it at the beginning of the year, so
she's leaps and bounds ahead of the pack and seems to be very cluey about what
it is, where it's going and what the benefits are.
Samantha said that Podcasting is an mp3 download. It's
not a broadcast. Apparantly it will be legislated as an mp3 download. You can
create a podcast with talk before a song and after, just like a radio show. You
can make that in any recording software, like Protools. (I use Cool Edit because
it's simple and you can insert mp3s/wavs and record your voice, but you don't
need a Mac or a huge studio set up). It can be from 3 mb to over 40 mb.... but
better to keep it light as people have to download it. Fans can listen to the
podcast at their leisure through their ipod or computer. Panos Panay says it's
like "Tevo for Radio".
Once created it gets fed to other different sources
and RSS feeds. Itunes picks it up also, and it can get a lot of attention if
it's officially listed. KCRW, the ecclectic public broadcast radio station in
Santa Monica CA, was one of the first to create a free podcast (for members) of
their weekly show on their website KCRW.org. When itunes first picked it up they
had 100 subscribers. In one day it went to 100,000 subscribers. They now have
over 1 million subscribers. Not bad for a left of center non-profit radio
There are copyright issues that are going to happen...
Elise Nordling, radio host in San Francisco who also has her own podcast,
mentioned that there are two copyright laws involved when it comes to
podcasting. The first is the Song composition - owned by the songwriter and
publisher. The second is the sound recording - owned by the master owner/Artist
and/or Record Label. So basically, at this stage, anyone hosting their own
podcast needs to get permission from both these two entities, which could be the
same person. An independent artist who has produced and funded their own album
most probably owns their songs and their masters. But not always the case. It
can be a real hassle hunting down the copyright owners to get their permission
to podcast essentially their song.
At this point in time there is no way to pay/track
royalties for the use of songs in podcasts. Podcast hosts have been able to find
lucrative ways to make money though. Jeff Heiman from Play Network runs a
podcast and he collects money through advertising. In turn, he has begun a nice
payment model where he allocates a percentage of advertising revenue to the
artists (and/or copyright owners as per above) for playing their songs. But he
is always very careful to play songs that are easy to get a release. He admitted
that since there is no revenue stream in place yet, that the best thing to do is
split the advertising revenue on a favored nations basis. (Each artist played
gets the same amount of money).
Elise Nordling and Samantha Murphy only play songs of
artists that can give permission for both parts of the copyright there and then.
Elise says she simply asks the artist to sign a form and then she can play them.
They don't want to go chasing labels and 5 different people just to play their
Panos talked a little about Adam Curry, who started
podcasting. He mentioned that the best podcasts are where you get to hear
snippets of songs in a show of about an hour. Some songs are only 30 seconds
long because copyright legislation allows "fair use for demonstration" which is
30 seconds long. This kind of overrides the need to always get permission. (I
thought this was kind of spooky to hear this. It reminded me of the early days
of Napster when they claimed they were just sharing songs with their friends...
yeah 100,000 of them which spread to millions!)
So then the Napster representative began to speak
herself. Michelle Santosuosso was particularly concerned for artists and their
royalty payment needs, which was very ironic to hear, although I was certainly
comforted if indeed Napster is now understanding this dire importance. She said
that the RIAA is upset because they cannot collect fees for the copyright owner
yet from Podcasts. How ironic again? You know who the RIAA represent right? The
major record companies. Isn't is such a shame (I am using sarcasm here) that the
labels are unable to stop spreading art, that consumers can control what they
want to listen to? Samantha Murphy has been keeping a close watch on the
discussions and future of these download rights for the songs. Apparently Ascap
and BMI are already collecting $300 a year from major podcasters for so called
"broadcasting" songs. The weird thing is that the songwriters are not getting
paid? So where is the money hiding? Why aren't songwriters getting paid. They
claim it's too hard to divide it up because it's impossible (at this point in
time) to audit the statistics and downloads. So why are they collecting the
money and who are they harboring it for?
Michelle from Napster offered a cool site to check out
called www.musicpodcasting.org. It's the Association of
Music Podcasting. I went there and got another blast of information which my
brain is just soaking up like a sponge. In their own words, AMP was formed in
January 2005 to unite podcasters who play awesome, legally available independent
music. We are a bunch of music lovers who have access to great, mostly
independent music that you probably haven't heard of (yet). We provide a fresh
alternative to the radio you may be used to. It is all 100% legal and safe to
At the Rockrgrl panel, Michelle at Napster defined the
new era of podcasting as being majorly powerful for indie artists. Even Derek
Siver's CDbaby.com has joined in on the fun. He has offered over 2,500 artists'
songs to www.podsafeaudio.com, from cdbaby artists who've
opted in to this opportunity. It's listed now at itunes. Powerful grassroots
marketing stuff don't you think?
Samantha Murphy says that podcasting is growing faster
than anything in history. In January there were one hundred associations of
music podcasting. www.musicpodcasting.org was the first. Now there
are millions, and once you create a show, it's up there in cyberspace in
Success stories for artists through podcasting? Panos
from Sonicbids says that it's not about success stories through this phenomenon.
Podcasts, EPKs (electronic press kits that he has re-invented with a vengeance),
and web blogs are merely tools to get out there. We are living in the best of
times, where artists are able to make a living by what we love to do. It used to
be about being signed to a label and touring. Now it's about diversifying the
access to the world to get our music out there and making a living from it, and
the Internet is truly where it's at.
I walked away from that panel on fire and ready to
take on podcasting more and more.
Managing podcast subscriptions...
So how do you manage your subscriptions to podcasts?
Well I've discovered Juice, now on my 7th day of podcast introduction heaven.
It's a "podcatcher". I'm getting very cluey on these terms, all in one week.
Juice was called Ipodder, but they changed their name. They say "We squeezed
"iPodder" out of our name. What’s left is... pure Juice." http://juicereceiver.sourceforge.net/index.php
is where you can download the software to your computer. If you want to listen
to podcasts, this program is for you. Juice is the premier podcast receiver,
allowing users to capture and listen to podcasts anytime, anywhere. Once
installed, the program offers you a way to manage your podcasts... which music
program to play your podcasts on (itunes, Windows Media Player etc), checks for
new podcasts when the application is started, and more. If you use Windows, like
I do, it automatically sends new podcasts to your "My Received Podcasts" folder
that Microsoft creates in your Documents. It's pretty seamless really, and very
Very soon we'll be able to make our own branded Juice
Receiver with preset subscriptions so i can package all my podcasts in one area
and have it downloaded from my site. For now, you can subscribe to my podcasts
individually. Feedburner.com is another cool site to collate all your podcast
feeds into one.
But I like Juice. It uses a yellow lemon for it's logo
and I don't know why, but that sucked me in. So, go get Juice at http://juicereceiver.sourceforge.net/index.php
and add my podcast feeds to your list today: Warrior Girl Music podcast,
featuring Females On Fire artists and gilli moon http://www.garageband.com/user/warriorgirl/podcast/main.xml
Songsalive! Songwriters podcast, featuring Songsalive!
Elite members http://www.garageband.com/user/warriorgirl/podcast/http_www_songsalive_org.xml
gilli moon's music only 24/7 podcast http://www.garageband.com/artist/gillimoon/podcast/newsletter.xml
Or all of the above are linked at http://www.gillimoon.com/download
I know my Warrior Girl Music marketing mentor and
distributor, Ernie Campagna (former A&M executive now independent
revolutionist of the new music paradigm with Experience Entertainment) would say
to me: "Gilli, now it's about the artist reaching directly to the consumer.
That's it. By-pass the middlemen. You can reach your audience directly now. Do
your art and they will come." He then emailed me an mp3 of Joni Mitchell's 1970
recording of "For Free", and her words said it all. She really knew it all
Thanks for reading,
All written matter © Gilli Moon of Warrior Girl Music,
and cannot be printed, disseminated or published unless by the strict permission
of the writer. Contact Gilli Moon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
her maverick nature Gilli Moon is a singer, songwriter, recording artist,
pianist, actor, producer, author, painter, motivator, entrepreneur, visionary,
and just about anything else this spirited Aussie puts her agile mind to!
Gilli's restless creativity and rebellious nature constantly drive her to push
the envelope - in the recording studio; when performing on stage; with her
record company, Warrior Girl Music, or indeed wherever she chooses to place her
immeasurable energy. http://www.gillimoon.com http://www.warriorgirlmusic.com
I AM A
the key to survival and success in the world of the arts by GILLI
"I AM a Professional Artist"
combines a self-empowering practical guide in surviving and succeeding in the
Arts with key business principles and spiritual nourishment. Whether you are a
musician, singer/songwriter, actor, screen writer, author, painter, film
director, etc., this book is FOR YOU! Details at http://www.gillimoon.com/thebook