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Music Business Articles & Tip Sheets
A carefully selected round up of how-to and insider articles on the music business from around the internet.

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Streaming Music Revenue Payments
If a song is streamed on Spotify, the company has three entities to pay... and none of them are the artist. So how does the artist get paid by Spotify? Added 04/22/13.

I Get Emails.... Boy, Do I Get Emails!

Today I'm going to share with you a response I wrote to a well-intentioned guy who was clearly very passionate about getting some artists he'd found into the mainstream. He was fairly polite, and even though he had no idea how to write or talk to a music industry professional... I felt kinda sorry for him. Added 02/05/2013

Streaming Royalties Suck Now, but Just Wait

Spotify et al are still relatively new companies and services. Whenever any new digital music company launches; musicians, labels etc. think they are some kind of instant savior that will make all artists and labels finally rich and famous. But how can that be?
 Added 02/01/2013.

The Importance of a YouTube Channel for Your Music Business

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest. We all know that social media marketing is the way forward. But if you’re involved in music, there is really only one social network you should be using. YouTube is booming in popularity - 3 billion hours of video are watched every month – so if you’re not sharing videos, you’re missing out. Added 07/30/2012.

Hiring a Music Attorney: Some Insider Tips

If you are seeking a career in the music business, there will most likely come a time when consulting with an attorney will be helpful. As an attorney myself for over twenty years, I have observed over the years many attorneys working with their clients, and I have seen many attorney-client relationships work and not work. I want to discuss here, completely candidly, what I believe what you should know about hiring an attorney and working successfully with that attorney. Article by Bart Day. Added 04/27/2012.

Why Are Musicians So Afraid of New Technologies?

I've seen it over and over again. Musicians who have been promoting themselves for years, if not decades, are so suspicious of any new online tools or apps that can help their careers..
 Added 02/13/2012.

About Playing Live...
To get booked at a local or regional club, you will not need the services of a booking agent, instead you will be able to do it yourselves. All you need is a complete and updated press kit, lots of persistence, and the ability and confidence to play a 45-60 minute set. Added 08/18/2011.

Adapt... or Don't.
Change is what life is all about. Think about it. We may want things to remain the same in a relationship but they don’t. A job we’ve had for years requires us to get re-trained or risk being laid off or fired. Somehow life gets in the way of our plans, and we have two options… change things, or pretend everything is just fine and face the consequences. Well, life in the music business is no different... Article by Chris Knab. Added 08/11/2011.

Ignorant Musicians Finish Last
KNOWLEDGE IS BLISS should be the byword for the musician of the new millennium. Added 08/11/2011.

Finding a Manager Isn't as Easy as You Think
Making money as a personal manager is no easy task, and many upcoming artists forget that if any moneys are to be generated from their music, it can takes years for the flow of that income to be reliably there. So, as a band develops self-management, or gets help from intern/student manager-wannabees, this can help pave the road for professional management. Added 08/10/2011

Design Simple, but Effective Promo Materials
Simple, but effective promo materials can draw people to your music! Here are 3 tips to help you promote your careers, and enhance your chances of being offered opportunities.  Added 08/02/2011.

Register Your Songs With the Copyright Office
When you write a song and "fix" it "in a tangible form", i.e. write it down somewhere or record it even in a simple way, your song is at that moment-protected by U.S. copyright laws. But... PROVING that the song is yours requires another step... Added 08/02/2011.

Be a Master Musician
Prior to the late 70’s, more often than not, the music that is our heritage was made by musicians who, from the time they took up their instrument, worshipped at the feet of some master rock n’ roller, bluesman, jazz player, folk legend, songwriter, or whatever. The habit of these inspired musicians was an appetite for perfection. A need to be not just good enough but GREAT. Why settle for less? Challenge yourself to go beyond your limitations. Added 07/23/2011

Play Often No Matter What
You can always tell the difference between a musician who is in it for the money, and a musician who is in it for the music.The dedicated musician can’t NOT play music every chance they get. Money-focused musicians whine about the fact that they can't get club gigs that pay anything. Well, If you think that you can make your living solely as a musician in the first three to four years of your career, you're headed for a breakdown and disappointment. Added 07/23/2011

Make Music That Doesn't Suck
Since we do indeed live in a time when everybody and their sister can and does make their own music, that doesn’t mean that your music has what it takes to make it. A&R Reps are always saying, when asked what they are looking for, “We don’t know what we are looking for, but we’ll recognize it when we hear it.” What we can read into this comment is that your music must truly stand out in some significant, original, dynamic, and creative way. Added 07/23/2011

There are No "10 Steps to Musical Success"
Today, more than ever, there are countless advisers like myself who offer tips to developing acts and ‘struggling musicians’, and all too often we try to inflict some step-by-step process on musicians that will help them become successful as musicians, but the truth is ‘There are no 10 steps to success’ or even 25 or 50 steps. Added 06/09/2011.

How Record Labels are Set Up
There's a lot of work involved with running a record label: signing, recording, promoting, publicizing, and selling music. The following introduction to the way major labels and independent labels set up the business of music marketing is broken down by departments. By Chris Knab. Added 06/09/2011.

Words of Wisdom from a Music Publicity Pro
25 music publicity tips from the mind of a publicity genius... Howard Bloom. Howard Bloom is responsible for the publicity for such legendary artists and bands as: ZZ Top, Prince, Talking Heads, Billy Joel, Billy Idol, REO Speedwagon, George Michael, and countless other artists. By Chris Knab. Added 06/02/2011.

A Sample Band Partnership Agreement

Throughout the last two decades I have often spoken of the importance of putting together a Band Agreement when you and your fellow band-mates are serious about doing business together professionally. Here you'll find a link to a template for a Band Agreement that will help you write up your own Agreement. Article by Chris Knab. Added 05/25/2011.

When Two Bands Have Exactly the Same Name

You hope it never happens to you, but let's face it: with millions of bands online, there's actually a decent chance another active group has exactly the same name as you. So what to do? Here's a link to an excerpt from the upcoming book, The Future of the Music Business (3rd Edition) by Steve Gordon that addresses this issue. Added February 2011.

What to Do When Someone Steals Your Song
One of the big concerns musicians often express is the fear that someone will hear their song, record their own version, and then take it to the bank. Is this really a reasonable fear? And what should you do if you hear a song on the radio, Internet or tv that sounds just like your song? That's one of the many questions answered in this excellent interview with copyright attorney Robert Clarida.  Added 02/02/2011.

10 Tips Even the M
ost Naïve Musicians Should Know
I had a call today from a young musician who was seeking advice about a demo tape he and his band had put together. He had plans to ‘shop it around’ to some labels to see if he could get a recording contract. He was a very polite guy, but the more we talked the more I realized how clueless he was. When the call was over, I couldn’t get it him out of my mind. How could he be so clueless in this day and age? What closet was this band living in, thinking that a demo tape of 6 songs was all he needed to get a ‘deal’. Added 01/26/2011.

How Original is Your Music?.... Really?

When any label puts up the money to record and market any artist, guess what? They want to get that money back and make a profit. It’s really that simple. Your music must inspire their business creativity. Any good promotion or marketing minded person will tell you that when they hear music that turns them on, they begin to think of marketing strategies and tactics to help get that music noticed. Article by Chris Knab. Added 01/20/2011

Questions You Should Be Able to Answer About Yourself or Your Band
As a music marketing consultant, whenever I take on a new client I go through the following questions with them. For newer artists or bands especially, the depth to which you can answer most of these questions will go a long way in helping you 'take an inventory' of what you have done so far in your career (and things that you haven't done yet). Added 01/20/2011

What's it Going to Be? A Fantasy Music Career or a Real One?
Stars are shown as if their lives were one big party. You’ve seen the limos, the gorgeous babes, the mansions, and the glamor of celebrity. Who wouldn’t want to live in luxury, meeting other celebrities? Be honest, haven’t you said to yourself, "My songs are really good… I could be on the radio and TV too!" Of course you have. But is that reality? Article by Chris Knab. Added 01/18/2011

Are You a Quitter When Times Get Tough?
If you want a formula for failure, it’s just one word. Quit. That’s the one thing that will definitely stop your career cold. Are you a musician or not? Musicians play music. Period.  Article by Chris Knab.

Do You Know How to Get a Record Deal? Take the Test.
Take this 100 question T/F test to find out how much you really know about the music business, getting signed and what getting a record deal is all about. Article by Chris Knab.

16 Timeless Music Business Self-Promotion Tips
The following tips are essential, life-long suggestions, for any and all musicians to remember as they establish and/or maintain their music careers. Article by Chris Knab. Added July 2010.

Do You Believe What You've Heard About How the Music Business Operates?
The history of the music business is filled with stories of musicians being misled or exploited by record labels, managers, attorneys, and other characters. Until the early 1980s, it was difficult to find information about record label contracts, marketing strategies, publishing issues, or anything else about the inner workings of the industry. That was then, and this is now. Article by Chris Knab. Added June 2010

What is a Band Agreement and Why You Need One
A band agreement  (sometimes called a partnership agreement) is proof-on-paper that there’s a commitment within your group to deal with the everyday realities of being a professional musical act. How many times have you heard the phrase "money changes everything?" Well, it’s true, and it’s one of the main reasons that you want to sit down with your fellow band members and work out on paper how you’re going to deal with the successes or failures that come your way BEFORE you start making money as a band or musical group. Article by Chris Knab. Added 05/27/2010.

Digital Servicing Myths
One of the new tricks to confuse artists is "digital distribution" or "digital servicing". This is a service where the following is supposed to happen: You pay a small fee to have your audio sent to radio stations, then the person at the station listens to your track, plays it, and the service then tells you who played it. Problem is, it's very misleading. Article by Bryan Farrish. Added 05/19/2010.

Mick Jagger on Royalties and Getting Paid for Music
"When The Rolling Stones started out, we didn’t make any money out of records because record companies wouldn’t pay you! They didn’t pay anyone! Then, there was a small period from 1970 to 1997, where people did get paid, and they got paid very handsomely and everyone made money. But now that period has gone." Commentary by Chris Knab. Added 05/16/2010.

Why We Still Need Independent Record Stores
In 2000 there were over 20,000 independent record stores around the country selling independent music of all kinds and doing their best to support new music and champion the little guy....today there only around 1400 independent music stores around. As indie labels and indie artists and bands, you need a healthy independent record store in your city or locate. Here's what they can do for you... Article by Chris Knab. Added 05/15/2010.

Money for Your Music: Facts About Music Licensing

Where music meets licensing, there's money to be made. How much money? We have all read about the multi-million-dollar deals for icon bands like the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, but what about the money for the rest of us? 
Article by The G-Man. Updated 04/27/2010.

How to Double Your Music Business Income

Want more money from your music business? Sure... But that would involve a lot more work, right? Not really...  In fact, you probably are already doing the work; you're just leaving money on the table. Article by David Hooper. Added 04/15/2010.

Artist Development Questionaire

How far along are you on the road to a successful music career? Thoughtful, honest, and detailed answers to these questions will help you evaluate your current career status, and help you define and refine what you HAVE done and what you HAVE NOT done. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 04/12/2010.

Types of Music Buyers and How to Appeal to Them

It's not uncommon to hear musicians say "EVERYBODY will love my music. It appeals to everyone" Wrong! Your music does not appeal to everyone. Not even the Beatles are/were loved by EVERYONE... there is no EVERYONE. But there are TYPES of people who may love your music. I have written at length about what are called "Adopters of Music" before, but its been awhile, so I want to give you a brief summary of what this issue is all about. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 04/05/2010.

Record Label Priorities
: Will Your Act Be One?

Since so many of you are still obsessed with the idea that signing a recording contract with a Major Label is the be-all and end-all, I am going to let you in on some facts about what can make a record a priority at a Label or NOT. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 04/04/2010.

Yes, Independent Record Stores Still Exist...

Every record store is in business to do one thing; sell music. Granted, the music retailer’s world isn't what it once was. Gone are the days when they could make a buck selling music and nothing else. But this change can work in your favor as well. If you want record stores to carry your record, it’s your job to convince the store buyers that they have to have it. Here are some suggestions to help you do that. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 04/02/2010.

What Every Musician Should Know About Their Fans

Studying the lifestyles of your fans will give you a passport to making money with your music. Why? Because when you discover who they are in great detail, their habits and lifestyles will inspire ways of reaching them you never imagined. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 03/30/2010.

"Grunt Work" is What Building Your Music Career is All About

If you thought writing and rehearsing your songs was tough, that recording them was more work than you expected, that getting the cover art for your CD was difficult, that building a great website was easy, that constantly updating your music blog, and social networking sites was fun and games, then hold on to your hard drive.
It’s no coincidence that promoting and selling a record is called "working" the record.
Article by Christopher Knab. Added 03/27/2010

The New Paradigm in Marketing Your Music is Here Now

Its been awhile now, but recently Tom Silverman of Tommy Boy Records fame has been back in the news with his revised
New Music Seminar. He first had it going in the early 80's, and it was a great place to go then to get caught up with how to market and sell independent music. He is back now, for the second year in a row, with a revised New Music Seminar. And we are all the better for it. Added 03/24/2010.

Are You Really a *Professional* Musician?

Everyone on the business side of music can recognize a competent, incompetent, or master musician. When it comes to auditioning new music, it doesn’t take more than ten seconds to judge you in some accurate way. You can never go wrong being a master musician. It’s no guarantee of success, but it’s a big deterrent if you are not a master musician on your instrument. Added 03/22/2010.

Draw Attention, but Don't DEMAND Attention

Waiting for someone to discover you is the purgatory of the unimaginative soul. How did this come to pass? Why are so many musicians and bands waiting in a self-imposed twilight zone? I trace it back to Tin Pan Alley. Yup, since the late 1890s, the income from published songs has been controlled by a coterie of powerful songwriters, publishers, and later, record company executives. But today we live in a new music environment, and we're forty-plus years past the birth of the indie revolution of the early 1970s. Things are different now, but I still encounter hundreds of wannabes at music conferences like the CMJ Marathon, SXSW, SXSE, etc. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 03/18/2010.

A Music Business Test: How Much to You Really Know?

Instead of writing about the subject of record distribution, and how labels, distributors, and music retailers work together, I have come up with a True/False and Multiple Choice test for you to take. It covers music business issues and simple everyday music marketing ideas that you should know a bit about. This test will give you some very important clues about how the music business operates; as well as some insights into the preparation plans for marketing music products. Article by Christopher Knab. Added 10/13/2009

The Endless Flood of Crappy New Releases

Why are so many artists and bands in such a hurry to create and get their music out there? Commentary by Christopher Knab.  Added 10/13/2009

Net Profit Deals: Not Your Traditional Record Deal

Ten years ago, out of every ten indie record deals I negotiated, only one or two were Net Profit Deals. Today it's more like six or seven out of every ten, at least. In this article, I will first compare the basic aspects of Net Profit Deals and traditional record deals, and the advantages and disadvantages of each, both for labels and for artists. Article by Bart Day. Added 10/02/2009

Changes in the Music Industry

I've been spending some time lately reviewing my book, "The Complete Guide to Starting a Record Company," endeavoring to be sure it remains relevant and up to date. This got me to thinking about "change" in the record industry. What kind of changes have there been, and over what period of time have they occurred? Article by Keith Holzman. Added 06/16/2009.

Social Media: A Lesson in Self Defense for Musicians

Social interaction with your fans is a good thing... to a point. But it would be wise to give yourself a few rules to go by; rules to help protect you not only from yourself (you can be your own worst enemy), but also those who follow you that may or may not have your best interests in mind. Consider this a lesson in social media self-defense. Added Aprril 29th, 2009.

The "Secret" to Selling Lots of Music

I just received my biggest single payout ever for digital music sales from CD Baby. Over $2,000 just in digital music sales. That got me thinking. Why do people buy music? What is it that makes someone, a total stranger, actually go out and PURCHASE music? Especially when, in this day and age, people can find so much music for free on the Internet. To what do I owe my great digital sales success? Added 03/10/2009

House Concerts: Be an "American Idol," One House at a Time

You may scoff at the idea of playing a concert in a persons home because you are concerned about SIZE. The size of the audience doesn't matter. In fact, you will likely find, as I did, that playing a concert to a small audience in a home is much more effective and financially lucrative than playing in a "typical" venue. Added 02/27/2009

More Recommended Reading...

The Lessons of Vinyl

It won't save the recording industry.  But the recent resurgence in vinyl is happening for a reason. The numbers aren't jaw-dropping, but they are difficult to ignore.  Just recently, Boston-based Newbury Comics pointed to monthly vinyl sales of more than $100,000, and other independent stores are also reporting gains. Majors are also taking notice.  That includes EMI, which recently started offering vinyl versions on a select number of titles.  The major pointed to an 80 percent jump in vinyl sales last year.  And the RIAA pegged 2007 sales at 1.3 million, a 36.6 percent increase from 2006.  Article by Paul Resnikoff. Added 08/04/2008.

Making a Living From Just Your Music

Can it be done? Can it really be done? The answer is yes. I've been doing it. I've been making a living from music for the last seven years now. Living the dream. Doing music full time. Commentary by David Nevue. Added 08/01/2008

Twitter-ing Your Music: Google Alerts

One of the aspects of Internet marketing I'm working on for the next edition of my book (the 2009 Edition) is the impact of social media on marketing music. Now, every year there is inevitably a "buzz" about the this or that - some big new something that is the rage in online marketing. Well, right now it's social media. And so one of the things I have been exploring is the viability of using social media to promote ones music. And one of the tools I have just started using is Twitter. Commentary by David Nevue. Added 08/01/2008

Going Digital: Atoms and Bits or Bits Without Atoms?

Just about every artist and label is releasing music in some digital form these days. That's a no-brainer, and I see no reason not to release any new project digitally -- as bits. But many clients are asking themselves if they also need to release in one of the traditional physical formats such as CD or LP -- in other words, as atoms. Such a decision has to be based on the many disparate aspects of a business and will be different in each instance. It all depends on an artist's or label's circumstances. What should YOU do? Article by Keith Holzman. Added 07/21/2008.

Starbucks: Why Mainstream Can Kill

It's amazing. Starbucks mastered the art of selling $4 drinks and ultra-expensive snacks. Not only that, customers will spend their most precious commodity - time - waiting in line for the privilege. But Starbucks has always been selling more than just coffee. Part of the allure is the predictability and comfort that Starbucks offers - the famous "third place" envisioned and carefully crafted over the years.  Sitting, sipping, philosophizing, zoning out, or just running in-and-out - the Starbucks atmosphere is worth its weight in gold. Or, at least that's been the story until recently. Article by Paul Resnikoff. Added 05/25/2008.

How to Write Your Own Music Marketing Plan

I want you to sit down right now and write the answer to this question on a piece of paper:
“Of all the things I could do in my life, WHY do I want to learn how to write a music marketing plan?" I ask this because the only business that needs to know how to market music are record labels. If you are just an independent musician who has recorded a CD but wants it to sell, then (whether or not you want to admit it....) you are starting your own record label, and record labels must write music marketing plans if they have any chance of selling the recordings they have made! Article by Chris Knab. Added 04/02/2008.

20 Things to Do While You're Sitting Around Waiting for Your Fans to Show Up
This article
was forwarded to us recently by an associate. It's an older blog (posted July 2007), but still very "current" in topic and worthwhile reading, especially if you're scratching your head thinking "what now?" in regards to promoting your music online. Article by Michael Lee 

Is Reznor Reshaping the Market?

Ghosts is a variation on a theme created by Radiohead.  The latest NIN album is part free, part paid, part digital, and part traditional.  And a broad range of consumer preferences and budgets are accommodated by the initiative. Reznor and Radiohead are important market-movers and fearless risk-takers.  But are these experiments really relevant to the broader music industry? Article by Paul Resnikoff. Added 03/04/2008.

Will Awards and Contests Lead to Bigger Things?

Human beings are fascinated with awards.  So, it’s no surprise that musicians are constantly submitting to the many awards and entering the myriads of contests offered to unsigned artists every year.  But what if you continue to enter and never win?  Will you be branded as a loser?  Will your fans abandon you, asked to be removed from your mailing list, line their birdcages with your CDs?  It is really better to have entered and lost than never to have entered at all? Article by Sheena Metal. Added 02/25/2008. 

Record Labels: Survival of the Fittest

We all know that the record business is in major transition, has been for a few years now. Still, major labels and independent labels are trying to figure out what the new model is. But the real problem with most labels is that they still want to be in 'big business'. This is the first real issue labels have got to deal with. Because CD sales are on the downturn and record labels are cutting back on staff (hence the EMI shake up recently). Commentary by Chris Standring. Added 02/23/2008.

How to Develop Your Music Marketing Plan

For years I've been stressing to my clients the need to develop -- and implement -- comprehensive marketing plans for each and every release. And lately, it seems, quite a few have asked me to guide them through the process of creating them. The plan should include what's to be done to publicize the release, how you might enlist and obtain radio airplay, how you plan to motivate your distributor and retailers to move appropriate quantities into stores, and what'll be involved in digital distribution of individual tracks and complete albums, but most important -- how you plan to motivate the public to buy the music. Article by Keith Holzman.  Added 02/19/2008.

How to Copyright Music
How Do I Copyright My Music? That's a question I get asked a lot here at the Music Biz Academy. And so, I decided I might as well write a formal article about it. Article by David Nevue. Added 12/26/2007.

David Byrne's Survival Strategies for Emerging Artists — and Megastars
What is called the music business today is not the business of producing music. At some point it became the business of selling CDs in plastic cases, and that business will soon be over. But that's not bad news for music, and it's certainly not bad news for musicians. Indeed, with all the ways to reach an audience, there have never been more opportunities for artists. Where are things going? Well, some people's charts look like this.... Addee 12/26/2007.

20 Steps to Creating a Successful Blog for Your Band
Part One: Blogs prove to be a tricky field to conquer, especially when it comes to gaining an initial reader-base.  However, once you get that reader base, great potential for increasing your online reputation is created.  Successful blogs keep their status by following these 20 rules from the start and throughout their blog’s lifetime. Article by Lance Trebesch of TicketPrinting.com.

20 Steps to Creating a Successful Blog for Your Band
Part Two: Part one talks about setting up the blog in the right format to gain reader interest.  Part two discusses about more promotion techniques and how to keep your readers. Article by Lance Trebesch of TicketPrinting.com.

What Do You Know About Getting Signed and Working With a Record Label?
A True/False, multiple choice quiz to test your knowledge of record labels and how they work. Article by Christopher Knab.

Superstar Leftovers
Once upon a time, major labels created superstar artists.  Then, a digital disruption dismantled the major label model, and big-name artists began pursuing post-label ambitions. But even in their darkest hour, the influence of major labels is still being felt.  Because without the promotional, marketing, and financial backing of the majors, Madonna, Radiohead, and the Eagles wouldn't be hogging headlines today.  These are superstars created in an earlier era, and that makes their newfound models less indicative of the future music industry. Get ready for an echo-chamber of "360 degree," quite possibly the next big buzzword - or buzz phrase - of this industry. Article by Paul Resnikoff. Added 11/16/2007.

The Many Roles of a Successful Project Studio Owner
Those of us in the music business all know that project studios are popping up everywhere these days. These are usually smaller-type studios than the professional large-scale recording studios, but can often produce high quality work for a much cheaper price for various recording artists. Running a successful project studio can require you to develop skills to be many different people - project coordinator, record producer, psychologist, advisor, versatile scheduler, great communicator, storyteller, business person and entrepreneur, just to name a few. Article by Eric McKinney. Added 11/07/2007.

7 Steps to a Successful Audition
Marco Kasel, talent and booking agent for Oceanbound Cruise Lines offers seven tips that will help you better prepare (and correctly set your expectations) for music auditions. Added 08/27/2007

Performance Royalties
For years radio airplay was the primary method for marketing almost all genres of music. Although that's no longer strictly the case, what's remarkable is that recording artists and record labels have never received any form of payment for this usage -- not a single penny! Yes, publishers, songwriters and composers receive compensation via annual fees paid to ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC by radio stations. But no performance royalty to labels and artists has ever been paid in the U.S. for over-the-air broadcasts, and this situation has existed for many decades, in fact since the first commercial broadcast in 1922! Article by Keith Holzman.

Radio Play: Will Topping the Charts Make You Bigger Than Elvis?
Can a band in our current music scene walk into a radio station with a CD single in their hot little hands, impress and wow the DJ with their enthusiasm and chutzpa, obtain the magic and golden FM radio spins and then ride the wave of success all the way to Graceland? Article by Sheena Metal.

10 Things to Do Before Your Release Your Album
Following are, in no particular order, 10 important things you should do before you release your album. Article by Jeremy Rwakaara.

Set Goals: Your Rockstardom Wasn't Built in a Day
How can you tell if your career is actually going somewhere?  How do you know if you’re getting closer to your musical dreams? While there is no one set way achieve rock superstardom, the clearest way to realize musical success is to simply set goals. As mundane as it may seem, setting goals, both long and short-term, for your musical project, can help you achieve what you want. Here are some tips for settings goals in a realistic way that won't leave you feeling disappointed. Article by Sheena Metal.

The Devaluation of Music
I've become greatly concerned that music is no longer considered to be magical, and I suspect I'm not alone in this belief. Music has become a mere commodity and is not valued for the exciting, emotional experience it's capable of creating. A number of things happened recently that have confirmed this realization. Article by Keith Holzman.

3 Ways to Become an "Opening Act"
Ever wonder how you can become an opening act for another band in your local area, or even better, for a bigger name that comes through town? In this article, Jeri Goldstein offers
three options that might help you land those opening act spots. Article by Jeri Goldstein.

Your First Recording Session
You've finally reached the point where you are ready to enter a real studio and lay down your music. It sounds easy, right? Most musicians get a real eye-opening experience the first time they work with a professional studio. Although an experienced producer and engineer can ease the transition for inexperienced musicians, there are still many things to overcome. Article by Jeff Wheaton.

Why You Definitely *Don't* Want a Record Label
I'm pretty much done with record labels. I finally learned my lesson last weekend. Before I get into my rant, I should say that there still is a place for record companies, but they are not for most of us. If you win American Idol or even get into the top five finalists, then sure, sign a record deal. Use the machine to make you famous for 15 minutes. You're a puppet after all, not an artist. That machine is absolutely right for you. But if you are an artist or want any kind of longevity, a career perhaps, then think again... Article by Chris Standring.

Top 5 Reasons Why You Need a Publicist
In order to sell something, the public needs to know about it. You have something you are certain that the rest of the public needs to know about and there is no better way to spread the word about you or your product than with public relations. With the proper publicist, you will get the chance to tell the world whatever you think they should know, in the most effectual manner. Here's why you need a publicist. Article by Mona Loring.

The Artist-Friendly Contract
I've always stressed to my clients that their contacts be artist-friendly, and I mean this from two standpoints. First, they should be fair and even-handed in the terms and provisions. Second, they should be written so that the average person can readily understand what they mean. These are some of the things record labels should consider when writing artist agreements. Article by Keith Holzman.

How to Get Airplay on Non-Commercial Radio
There are many thoughts on how an artist gets airplay both here at the KEXP and on radio in general.  While I can’t speak for other radio stations I can offer some advice based on my experience here at KEXP, and running my indie label Loveless that might help you get your music heard and played on radio. Article by John Richards.

Coping With Stage Fright
Lots of people get stage fright, to one extent or another. For some people, stage fright provides an edge, a kind of excitement that stimulates their performance. But for others, stage fright can get out of control and ruin an otherwise good performance. If you have butterflies in your stomach or tension in your throat, vocal coach Jan Smith has some advice for you...

Stop Burning Bridges...or Your Career Might Go Up in Flames
What can you, as musicians do, to eliminate aspects of your personality that may be causing bad blood between you and the people you run across on your way to superstardom? The following are a few tips that may help you to make sure you’re exhibiting professional behavior at all times. Article by Sheena Metal.

Band Tries to Make it Big Without Going Broke
This offsite NPR article by Chris Arnold speaks to the reality of making it in the music business. A recommended read for struggling bands. You're not alone.

How to Help the Music Industry Take You Seriously
Every month I have to listen to tons of artist submissions. Sometimes it's painful, other times it's a pleasure. Usually the pleasure or pain threshold is not to do with how the music sounds, although God only knows that is the ice cream! No, the enjoyment factor begins when I know that a package has been carefully put together. An artist who is serious will do it right from the start. Article by Chris Standring

ASCAP, BMI, SESAC and Free Music
While the old Napster involved lots of kids and students getting music without compensation paid to the writers and publishers, it’s quite a different situation when highly profitable companies such as television networks and radio stations are allowed to use huge amounts music legally and the writers and publishers of this music receive no share of performance license fees paid for these usages. How could this happen in this day of computerization and digital delivery? It happens every day, and it’s happening right now on hundreds of television and radio stations. Commentary by Mark Northam.

Power Words: How to Make Your Song Lyrics Stronger
All songwriters struggle with their lyrics to their songs from time to time. It's one of the "hazards" of the trade. And many times we settle for words that aren't what we mean or don't carry enough punch. Even songwriters whose strength is their lyrics don't always take the proper amount of time to choose their words carefully.
Article by Stan Swanson.

Opening Acts: Does Playing Before a Rock Star Make You One?
It’s the dream of many a musician to open up for either: their favorite band or the favorite band of their childhood.  For many, the ultimate in true rock star status is to share a stage with the musicians who made you want to play music in the first place…to see you name in lights with the guys (or gals) whose music you listen to almost as much as (if not more than) your own. But is it really a good idea, as an unsigned artist, to open up for an act already known to the general public?  Article by Sheena Metal.

Are You a Record Label?
The time has come when making CDs or other physical product available for sale at retail outlets such as Tower (what's left of it,) Borders, BestBuy, or local mom and pop record stores no longer determines the status of being a label. To a great extent, what constitutes a record label is very much in the mind of the begetter, and/or beholder. Article by Keith Holzman.

Selling Your Music Online - A Reality Check
I am often asked how much money a person can really make selling music online. I hear both extremes, both from artists who think they'll use the Internet to make it rich, and others who don't believe anyone can make any money online selling music. The truth is somewhere in between. Article by David Nevue.

Music for Film and TV: Can You Talk the Talk?
I've worked in film and video for the last several years and have always been the one to place most of the music in commercials and TV shows I work on. What's surprised me throughout my career is discovering some musicians who know how to talk the talk, and some who don't. So how can I tell? What do I hear? Article by Susan Finch.

Book Review: How to Promote Your Music on the Internet
"...Delivers what it promises beyond clichés, generalizations and oversimplifications that are so often prevalent in books of a similar nature. For its practicality and helpfulness, David Nevue’s effort should be applauded...." Review by Norm Goldman, BookPleasures.com

Finding Truth Through Stage Personas
Developing an "act" is more than just putting a good CD together. It's about the way the musicians play (live), the clothes they wear on stage, the way they relate to the audience, how they stand on stage, the patter in between songs,.. the whole "live stage persona."
Article by Gilli Moon.

House Concerts: Building Your Fan Base One Living Room at a Time
House concerts are predicated on the notion that the most intimate listening-room on the planet might just be home, sweet home. A fan invites friends to attend the show, requests a modest donation to the artist and maybe makes an offer of alcohol or food to the collective pot. People eat. People drink. People sit down to hear some great live music. And because the Artist eats, drinks and shmoozes with the audience, merch sales and fan mailing lists increase dramatically. Go figure. Article by Mike Grebb. Added 06/22/2006.

Make a Music Video in 5 Easy Steps
usic videos don't need to be expensive or glitzy these days. In fact, fans often appreciate an underground feel that makes them feel closer to the artist. "I don't think for an independent artist that it's practical to spend a boatload of money to compete with the majors," says big-time producer Marcus "DL" Siskind, In fact, Siskind says artists are sometimes better off going beyond the traditional music video... Article by Mike Grebb

Smart Marketing: Building a Fanbase
"Once I have a subscriber in my database, it is like gold dust, and provided they really want to be on that list, the chances of converting them into a sale when a new album comes out are pretty high. And with this in mind I started thinking, "Gotta get more on my list, gotta get more on my list...but how do I do that?".... Article by Chris Standring.

Web Design 101 for Record Labels (and Artist's too!)
Websites have a very basic task -- to educate the public on just what it is your company or your record label is all about, and perhaps more important, it may also be a way of selling them something. And if you're selling, you must be clear just what it is you have for sale -- whether it's music, a service, or something else. Article by Keith Holzman.

10 Tips to Keep You on the Music Career-Building Path
If there are any guarantees in the music business, you can bet that stumbling blocks to success abound. Knowing that problems will arise and finding solutions is half the challenge. The other half is implementing your strategies and tactics consistently and professionally. Article by Chris Knab.

What You Should Know About Your Fans
Studying the lifestyles of your fans will give you a passport to making money with your music. Why? Because when you discover who they are in great detail, their habits and lifestyles will inspire ways of reaching them you never imagined.... Article by Chris Knab.

Start a Label and Build and Empire, Part 2
There’s nothing more difficult, time-consuming, frustrating and masochistic than starting your own record label. Believe me, I know. In addition to my job as resident mouthpiece here at Atlas Plugged, I’m also a partner in BOS Music, a label that I started with a few buddies about five years ago. Keeping BOS in the game hasn’t been easy. But having all walked over hot coals together at this point, we’ve become kindred survivors in the small-business battlefield... Article by Mike Grebb

The New Rules of Writing Press Releases
When do you write a press release? All the time. Press releases have evolved. They are no longer the static tool sent via fax to specific editors. They can go out to tens of thousands of readers worldwide with the click of a button....
Article by Marc Gunn

Start a Label and Build and Empire, Part 1
The traditional goal for many aspiring artists has always boiled down to two words: Get signed. These magical words conjured visions of stretch limos, screaming fans, endless bags of money… but today's artists are a lot smarter. They now know that "getting signed" seldom equals eternal bliss and security. Artists have gradually realized in recent years that the do-it-yourself model of putting out records and managing a career from the grassroots can yield certain advantages. Article by Mike Grebb

How to Promote CDs at Gigs You Never Play
How much would it be worth to you to learn how to promote your CD at gigs you never even play, but create a large number of sales from these gigs just the same? This possibility explained by Kenny Love.

More Music Acts Going Independent Route
Countless bands have found themselves in a quandary: Signed to a major label, with promises of widespread distribution and big promotional budgets, yet going nowhere. They are casualties of an industry increasingly geared toward acts who can reliably sell millions of albums at a time. As a result, a growing number of artists who do not fit that paradigm are going independent — financing their own records and tours, securing distribution deals and serving as their own publicists. Added 10/08/2005.

Selling Your Music Online: Designing Your Web Site
Okay, you want to create a web site from which to sell and promote your music. Now what? Here are some tips from
by David Nevue, author of How to Promote Your Music Successfully on the Internet.

Should You Trademark Your Band's Name?
The question: "My lawyer says that if I fail to trademark my band name, another band with the same name could trademark it and stop me from using it. What's more, the other band could even sue me for punitive damages. But the costs for a trademark are quite high. Should I do it?" Consultant
Kenny Love provides an answer.

Your Music: A Business or Hobby?
We all want to make a living doing something we enjoy. For most artists, making money isn't the central goal, and running a business isn't even a concern. However, success in creating and disseminating your work requires certain business-like considerations. The first question for yourself (and the first thing the IRS will be interested in knowing) is whether or not your art is a business or a hobby.
Article by Mark Fox.

Non-Commercial Radio: Worth Promoting To?
Non-commercial stations are comprised of three groups: College, community, and "NPR" stations. College radio is by far the biggest non-commercial group, with about 1,000 stations in the U.S. and Canada. The biggest advantage of college radio is that it is the easiest and fastest way to get airplay, and with it, the comments, favorite tracks, interviews, and reports in CMJ and other magazines, all of which become great tools to market your band with. Article by Bryan Farrish.

Re-Thinking Your Image: Creating a Signature Style
Many talented emerging artists are confused by the issue of an image and don't have a sense of their own style. So, they either copy things from other people, or are just bland. Few artists actually have a true, distinct style. In today's entertainment environment, however, the first impression is as important as ever. Article by John Battaglia.

Your Speaking Skills Can Make You a Better Performer
Speech writers know that you have to grab the audience's attention in 30 seconds. That's where you make your biggest impact. If you ever see a musician get up on stage and fumble a "Hi. Um. We're the Barnyard Owls," you know what I mean. As musicians, we can grab the audience's attention with a song. But it helps to think about other ways to captivate your audience too. Article by Marc Gunn.

The Role of the Music Publisher
A key adjunct, and potentially considerable asset, of a record label is it's own music publishing company. Not every label establishes one, either through lack of expertise and experience, or insufficient time to deal with it. But failure to establish a publishing division could be a lost opportunity and a very costly mistake. Article by Keith Holzman.

Selling Your Music Online: Starting from Zero
The nice thing about selling your music on the Internet is that you can get started with very little cash up front. If you already have a computer and Internet access, you can get going for as little as $50.
Article by David Nevue.

So You Want to Quit Your Day Job?
You’re slaving away at your day job, playing your music at night and on the weekends, and it seems you’ll never have enough time to write, record and tour when 40 hours of your week are cashed in for that steady paycheck. You can’t help but think, “If only I could quit my job to work on my music full time, I’d be able to make it.”
ast year, I had a chance to do just that, and I learned a few things during my exciting, though sometimes heartbreaking year of freedom. Article by Mara.

How to Earn $30,000 With Your Music by Year's End
Ken Hill from Torchlight Creek Music shares more of his very popular (and humorous) songwriting tips - this time on how to combat writer's block.

Songwriting Tips - Writer's Block Blues
Ken Hill from Torchlight Creek Music shares more of his very popular (and humorous) songwriting tips - this time on how to combat writer's block.

The Lost Art of Artist Development
It's an all too familiar scenario. I open the mail to find a professional looking, five color printed CD with lyrics and clever artwork. It looks like product from a major label. I peel off the shrink wrap and put it on. The same problems are there over and over again; mediocre songwriting, inconsistent music style, middle of the road musicianship and production. Article by David Polemeni.

Selling Your Music Online: A Reality Check
I am often asked how much a person can really make selling music online. I hear both extremes, both from artists who think they'll use the Internet to make it rich, and others who don't believe anyone can make any money selling music online. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Article by David Nevue.

The Long Tail
Forget squeezing millions from a few megahits at the top of the charts. The future of entertainment is in the millions of niche markets at the shallow end of the bitstream. This is a MUST READ article from Wired magaine. Long, but worth it if you want to see where the business is heading. Added 10/28/2004.

Are You Overlooking Live Show Opportunities?
Let me ask you ... What has to happen for a person to be converted into being a fan of your music? There are a number of possible answers, but at the most basic level, one thing has to happen: The person must hear your music. Let's focus on that, because even with all of the advancements in technology, live performance continues to be one of the best ways to connect with fans, sell CDs and prosper as an artist. Article by Bob Baker. Added 10/08/2004.

The X Factor: What is it and do YOU have "IT"?
What exactly is the “X factor?” You hear professionals and artists alluding to it, but you rarely hear anyone defining “it.” If you are an aspiring music artist or an entertainer, it’s important to know what "it" is because in the mind of the most seasoned and powerful industry professionals, having “it” is what determines if you are worth the investment of endless amounts of time and money. Article by Gian M. Fiero. Added 09/29/2004.

Musician, Sign Thyself!
This wonderful exposé by L.A. music lawyer Dina LaPolt, Esq. demonstrates several reasons why independent musicians no longer need a major label deal to find success. In effect, you can start your own label and "sign" yourself.  Added 03/05/2004.

What's Wrong With American Idol?
Four music business experts say the popular talent show is misleading tens of thousands of aspiring musicians... and the public at large. Are YOU one of them? Article by Bob Baker. Added 03/17/2004.

14 Ways Musicians Can Increase Their Tips
Marc Gunn of the Brobdingnagian Bards has compiled this list suggesting ways you can increase the amount and number of tips you receive when playing live. 14 tips on getting more tips. Added 03/10/2004

"Gum at the Wall" Music Marketing: Why it Doesn't Work!
Many artist's egos are well-served by hiring radio promoters so that their CDs gain airplay and even show up on radio charts. This is all fine and good. But what happens if the artists is actually successful in such a campaign? Article and advice by Robin Spielberg. Added 03/17/2004.

Mastering Your Music: Why You Need it, Where to Get it, and How to Make the Most of it.
Mastering is widely misunderstood, often mangled, and sometimes mistaken for mixing. So, what is mastering? Mastering is what gives depth, punch, clarity and volume to your tracks. It is part science, part craft, and part alchemy... just like songwriting, singing, performing and recording. It's a crucial step, and this is the essential guide. Article by the G-Man. Added 01/29/2004. 

Money for Your Music: The Facts About Music Licensing
Where music meets licensing, there's money to be made. How much money? "I have synched quite a few thousand songs into productions over the years," states Peter Jansson of Janssongs, Inc., "and have charged anywhere between US$1.00 and US$250,000 for each one." That's correct: he said a quarter of a million dollars. And there are a great many places to earn money from music... Article by the G-Man. Added 11/05/2003.

18 More Songwriting Tips
Making something out of nothing can be a challenge. Here are more great tips from songwriter Ken Hill to get your creative juices flowing. Added 07/11/2003.

Making Your Fans Your Closest Allies
Are you keeping your fans at an arms' distance? Or are you treating them like family? If you're neglecting your fans, you're missing out on one of your biggest promotional assets. Article by Kenny Love. Added 07/10/2003

Songwriting Techniques
"In the last article I wrote (21 Songwriting Tips), we explored many different ways to expand our musicianship as a whole. Songwriting Techniques takes us a step inward, focusing on the art of welding a song that used to exist only in our minds." Another really excellent article by Ken Hill. Highly recommended for songwriters. Added 06/06/2003

Labels: Make Them Come to YOU!
"Everyone knows how hard it is getting signed to a record label. With the present state of the business, Internet piracy and lack of record sales in the music industry, it has never been harder and seemingly impossible for artists to get signed. Well let me try to uplift one or two spirits if if I may..." Article by Chris Standring. Added 05/27/2003.

$1000 Gigs: How to Make 'Em
Want to learn how to turn *each* of your future live performances (starting with your very next gig) into $500-$1,000 profit-makers (minimum), regardless of what the gig is actually paying you to perform? Article by Kenny Love. Added 05/27/2003.

Enthusiasm Rules!
There is one simple skill you should master that can often have a surprisingly positive effect on your music career. What is it, you may ask? Enthusiasm. Article by Jeffrey Fisher. Added 05/27/2003.

21 Songwriting Tips
Making something out of nothing can be a challenge. Here are some great tips from songwriter Ken Hill that will get your creative juices flowing. Added 05/02/2003.

No Label, No Problem
The struggle for autonomy in the pop world has broken out all over the map. While the corporate music machine grinds on, too big for what was once considered a street art, musicians of all types are shipping out to parts unknown to produce and market their own albums. In the old days, the goal of most would-be music stars was to enlist with one of the dozen or so major labels that sold popular music to the masses. But with just five money-losing global corporations dominating mainstream music, self-sufficiency has become the mantra of performers who find they can live just as well or better setting up shop on the Internet, at gigs or through independent distributors. Added 04/24/2003.

How to Cultivate Relationships
and Propel Your Music Career Forward!

"The music business is littered with over inflated egos and insecure artists who seem to think that the world somehow revolves around them....Stop and think for a moment what your reputation is. How do you think others perceive you?" Article by Chris Standring. Added 04/03/2003.

Nurture Your Fans!
"I have learned many things over the years in this business of music, but it has taken me a majority of those years to come to terms with what I feel is the most important aspect of being an artist....the fans. Fans are precious. Article by Chris Standring. Added 03/10/2003.

A Music Industry Case Study
A look at a mythical rock band's earnings, with actual figures compiled from industry sources: New York City's hottest new band is Grunthead, a four-piece hard rock group from Maspeth. Because they've got buzz, the band gets a 15% royalty rate, a few points above the usual amount for a new artist. Its debut, "Gruntastic," goes gold – only 128 of more than 30,000 records reached that level in 2002. The Gold Record Gross: 500,000 albums sell at $16.98 = $8,490,000 The Grunts' royalty is 15% of retail. That's $1,273,500. Is the band rich? Nope.... Added 02/21/2003.

How to Benefit from a Benefit
I took part in a benefit last week. A charity event for the red cross 911 disaster relief fund. Turned out to be a very successful show. Lots of TV stars, comedians from Saturday Night Live, day time soap actors, pop stars new and old. Every body threw in their two cents for a great cause. The spirit was wonderful. But it also got me thinking... Article by Chris Standring. Added 02/04/2003.

Publishing Deals Made Easy: A Thumbnail Sketch
People often speak of “publishing deals” in a generic way, which implies that there is only one kind of publishing deal. In fact, there are a number of different kinds of publishing deals, as described in this fantastic article by attorney Bart Day.

Planning Your Music Career: One Step at a Time
How to you begin planning for a serious career in the music business? What are the steps you need to take to 'make it?' Article by David Nevue. Added 10/27/2002.

Can a One-Man Record Label Be Successful?
I know that many of you are one-man record labels. You do it all: write your music, produce your music, engineer your music, promote your albums, and get your own gigs. Whether this is by choice, or out of necessity, I’m here to tell you that you can have success. Article by Derek Felton. Added 10/27/2002.

D-I-Y: Blessings, Curses and Limits
The do-it-yourself approach to marketing and promoting music that began back in the 1970's and, perhaps, as early as the 1950's as an experiment that was often an exercise in futility, but has, ironically, become the standard by which we all exist, also comes with its own sets of blessings, curses and limitations. Article by Kenny Love. Added 10/08/2002.

Are You Ready? Are You *Really* Ready?
As much as I herald the cause of independent music and its recording artist residents, in all honesty, I must say that there are numerous artists, many in fact, who are simply not ready for the professional end of the music industry. The worst part is, they don't yet realize it and, when they finally do, it is often too late. Are you really ready to take the next step? Article by Kenny Love. Added 09/25/2002.

Radio Airplay 101: What is 'Successful'?
The first question people have when they want to hire us (provided that they have never done an airplay campaign before) is "What airplay campaign do I need in order to be successful?" There couldn't be a more misplaced question. It's like when a cab driver asks you "Where to?" and you say "Well, where would I need to go in order to be successful?" Where you need to go depends on a million things, not to mention what your definition of "successful" might be. Article by Brian Farrish. Added 09/25/2002.

Releasing Your Own Record: A Legal Checklist
For artists who are releasing their own record for the first time, without the involvement or assistance of a label, the process can be a little intimidating. It can be easy to miss some key legal details in the process. Here, therefore, is a very basic checklist of issues to be considered when releasing a record. Article by Bart Day. Added 09/16/2002.

11 Ways to Make Your Next Showcase a Smash Success!
Whether you represent a label or individual artist, creating and promoting a showcase of musical acts can help you book larger venues, build media exposure, expand your fan base and jump-start merchandise sales. But how do you do a showcase right—and cost-effectively? ANTJE, founder of Chicago label, Sweet Pickle Music, shares 11 tips from her proven-in-practice playbook to help you craft your own showcase success story. Article by Lance Helgeson. Added 09/16/2002.

Cutting a 'Hot' CD
A common problem: You buy all that cool gear so you can record as much as you like on your own, and then your CD comes back 6 db softer than commercial products. Yikes! Since you want your CD to sound as competitive as possible, it's important to know why there's a difference. Article by John Vestman. Added 08/05/2002

Your Band Is Your Business
About 8 out of 10 bands that submit an "application" to work with me list something about quitting their day job as a major goal, Having worked a stint in Corporate America myself, I know the feeling. It's not easy to put on a monkey suit and put up with forty hours a week of irate customers, temper tantrums from your boss, and sales quotas. It's also not easy to make a living in music. Article by David Hooper.

Mastering: What is it and Why Can't I Do it Myself?
What is mastering and why can't you do it yourself? Well to answer the second part first, who says you can't? The mysteries of mastering are many and wonderful but with the right equipment it really is feasible these days to do it all yourself. "Aaarrgghhhh!!!" I can hear the cries of the audio-Nazis already. Added 04/13/2002.

'Making It' in the Music Business - An Alternate View
As an independent musician you will find that many experts in the music industry will be more than happy to feed you great morsels of advice. Unfortunately, this advice can sometimes be exactly what a budding musician does NOT need. Article by Graeme Kirk. Added 04/01/2002.

The Truth About Barcodes
I see many places that offer one a "personal barcode" for a small amount of money (which is illegal, by the way); or often a CD manufacturing company will offer an artist a "barcode with your OWN name" as part of the deal. But, let's talk about the ACTUAL barcode number, all right? Article by Janet Fisher. Added 04/01/2002.

Radio Airplay 101: Commercial Airplay Myths
When talking to people who are launching their first couple of projects, invariably the same misunderstood points come up concerning commercial regular-rotation airplay. Here they are... Added 03/14/2002.

How To Use T-Shirts To Market Your Band
This short article from Raintree Screenprint demonstrates the marketing potential T-Shirt sales. Added 01/03/2002.

Selling More CDs At Gigs: A Case Study
A surprisingly easy tactic for selling more CDs at live gigs.

Performance Contracts
If you're lining up gigs for your band, you need to protect yourself. Here are some guidelines as to what to include in your performance contract. Includes links to sample contracts. Article by Maria La France with support from Brett Trout, Attorney. Added 08/16/2001.

Don't Be a Victim of Music Business Scams and Shams
We recently sent out an e-mail reminder with an important warning attached concerning a MUSICAL SCAM. They are absolutely everywhere and some have been in existance since Billy Holiday first hit the stage... Article by C.J. Cauley. Added 08/16/2001.

How to $tiff-Proof Local Gigs
In today's commercial music industry, especially at the club venue level, many musicians are still getting $tiffed. In almost every case, it is because the musicians have either opted to receive their payment *after* the performance, are operating without a pre-defined agreement or contract, or both. So, why do these ill-fated acts continue? Article by Kenny Love. Added 11/30/2000

Starting Your Own Music Business
You have a better chance of starting your own music business than trying to land a job in the industry. Whether you decide to start a label, put together a band, begin a recording studio, or any number of music industry gigs, follow these basic steps before you take the plunge. Article by Jeffrey Fisher. Added 01/27/2001

The Truth about NACA. Gigging on the College Circuit.
This fantastic article by musician Fran Snyder tells the story one musicians experience making a career out of gigging the college circuit. The article demonstrates step by step how you can jump start your music career by showcasing your talent at NACA (National Association of Campus Activities) conferences. Included is a detailed comparison of college and nightclub gigs as well as the benefits of hiring an agent as opposed to representing yourself. Highly recommended reading.

Courtney Love Does the Math
Do you want a recording contract? Are you sure? Are you really sure? This blistering article by Courtney Love may change your mind. Added 6/15/2000.

How NOT to Get Signed
Eugene, Oregon alternative band Marigold was named one of the "Top 5 Unsigned Bands in America" by Ticketmaster. In spite of this, the band has had difficulties getting an offer from a major record label. Why? Read and learn from their experience. From an article appearing April 24th in the Eugene Register-Guard.

How to Get Into the College Market in 4 Steps
Want to start touring and performing for the college market? Check out this great, to the point article written by CDBaby's Derek Sivers

How to Take Full Advantage of Music Conferences
How to decided where to go, what your goals should be, and how to make the most of your opportunities. Article by Carolyn Ballen. Added 5/11/2000

Marigold Finds It's Way to the Light
Eugene, Oregon alternative band Marigold was named one of the "Top 5 Unsigned Bands in America" by Ticketmaster. In spite of this, the band couldn't get a record deal. Finally, after years trapped under a poor contract, Marigold sees light at the end of the tunnel. Part 2 of 2. By Allison Linn, The Register-Guard

The Problem with Music
Do you really want to sign a recording contract with a major label? This article points out exactly why it's important to stay independent if at all possible. Although you may have heard a few horror stories about record deals, you've probably never seen anything in this much detail. Warning: it's brutal! Written by Steve Albini, producer for such bands as Nirvana, PJ Harvey, The Breeders, The Pixies, Bush, and others. This article first appeared in Maximum Rock n' Roll #133.

The Reality of Reality
When will artists...unsigned, independent, or otherwise, realize that as a business, labels must make sound decisions they deem first in the label's best interest, if the label is to survive and remain functional in a highly competitive industry? And, I'm talking about the average independent label with the intention of truly assisting artists in their careers. Added 08/16/2000.

Submit An Article for Consideration!
Would you like to submit an article for publication at MusicBizAcademy.com? If you have music-related expertise you'd like to share with other musicians including career tips, how to's, or general music business-related articles, please feel free to send them our way. We'll be glad to consider them.
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