Far too many first-rate bands can’t seem to make the leap from playing great shows in smaller clubs to playing big rooms on bills that people are actually excited about. A few years of playing smaller rooms and your band should be ready to start making a name for itself. But toiling away in obscurity, waiting for someone to discover you isn’t a viable way to make it as a musician. And if you live in a hyper-competitive music market such as New York City (like I do), you really can’t just wait around.
Kickstarter says over 26,000 music projects have been funded through their service from the not so famous to the extremely famous such as Amanda Palmer. It’s also an option for DIY artists who don’t necessarily want to be tied to a record label or music publisher and you don’t have to sign away your rights in exchange for cash. But unless you have a loyal fanbase or are willing to commit yourself to a marketing and publicity campaign to draw attention to your project, the odds of success are variable. And while you can fund new projects, it’s not a platform for raising quick cash. [If you want to improve those odds, check out our free course, Crowdfunding for Musicians.]
Consider what one person can accomplish musically on a MacBook alone. With a DAW (digital audio workstation) like Ableton Live or Logic Pro, a few royalty-free sample packs, some cheap-to-free VSTs/plugins, and a bit of a musical ear, the “bedroom producer” now has all the ingredients she needs to create commercially viable music.
Music unites quotes
Logic Pro offers some of the best-sounding and most customizable synths right out of the box, here’s how to adjust their default settings to your liking!
Here are a handful of interesting ways that animals communicate to one another using sound signatures. Humans aren’t the only species with something to say!
Many actors struggle to learn new music without a plunk track, or a coach to help them learn. (We have a course for that, too!) But even fewer are comfortable sight singing. Sight singing skills become especially crucial after an actor books a gig. The first two days of rehearsal are almost always devoted to sight reading through the score. If actors are uncomfortable, they can feel left behind — and worse, slow down the process.
Even though the music industry is littered with cautionary tales of legendary songwriters who signed away their rights, it still exists as an option for songwriters with a back catalog of valuable songs. Songwriters in need of quick cash can contact companies like Royalty Exchange who will auction off some or all of their songs to the highest bidder. Publishing companies also often purchase portions or entire catalogs from writers for large sums of money.
(If you find yourself lost in all the music theory below, check out our free series of courses, Theory for Producers, and catch up on the fundamentals, even if you can’t read sheet music!)
Music grants for nonprofits
The 1% skim milk of the music industry has survived the barbarians at the gate, born again within the world of music streaming. In 2019, the listener pays only a little more for the convenience of streaming, but the money they do pay is vacuumed up by large tech and labels via the gated publishing communities like Spotify, Apple Music, and Google Play. Artists still struggle, as the innovations of tech revolutionaries were co-opted and sanitized by corporate interest.
It’s a fast-paced narrative with a continuous stream of engaging footage, following a very simple, linear storyline. But it also features a mixture of performance shots of Ke$ha singing to the camera and visuals conveying her “party animal” lifestyle, which accomplishes a great branding feat as these two shots combine to solidify her creative, boundless, and wild persona to fans watching.
Let’s start out with what a narrative is not. Your narrative is not necessarily the same thing as your biography. It is not a list of facts about your music education, when your band formed, and what awards you’ve received. And it’s not something that just lives on the bio page of your website.
Lyrics and vocal melodies are perhaps the most crucial aspect of working in genres such as folk, rock, pop, and R&B. Lyrics provide a clear, unambiguous musical focal point in the song, and give the listener something to follow. In other genres like EDM and jazz, vocals aren’t a necessity, but frequently show up in one form or another. Regardless, lyrics give songs an extra level on which to be identified.
Brad Pack is an award-winning audio engineer, writer, and educator based in Chicago, IL. Brad holds a Master’s degree in Electronic Media Production. When he’s not in front of his laptop, Brad can be found in the mosh pit.