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By FMC's Casey Rae on FutureOfMusic.org Who gets paid, how much and under what terms when music is played on digital and AM/FMradio? Answering those questions isn’t easy, even for experts. But one thing is clear: 2014 has been a big year for the laws and policies that determine royalty rates for all forms of radio, and the intrigue will likely continue into 2015. There are a few proceedings and court cases currently underway that will impact radio and creators—from legal questions around recordings made before 1972 to the rules that govern the public performances of musical works to royalty... Continue reading
Posted 8 hours ago at hypebot
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{UPDATED] By Brian Thompson from ZenThinking.net and Thorny Bleeder; writer, podcaster, and author of the upcoming book, "Sparks to Awaken." Content marketing is dead. or perhaps I should say, it makes me feel dead. whether you realize or not, it probably makes you feel quite empty and lifeless too. i’ve grown to have a serious disdain for the word ‘content’, when associated with creative and artistic work. when you add the word ‘marketing’ to the end of it to form 'content marketing', the resulting phrase gives me the serious willies now. i cringe.i know this may seem hypocritical considering all... Continue reading
Posted 10 hours ago at hypebot
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By David Pakman, prominent venture capitalist in NYC, the co-creator of Apple's Music Group, and former CEO of eMusic. This post originally appeared on Pakman.com There is a commonality in the Hachette/Amazon and Spotify/Pandora/Recording Artist debates and it looks something like this: By not paying enough royalties to the licensor (book publisher, record label), authors and artists are being starved. We are told this is critically bad for authors and artists who can no longer earn a living. Thus, creators won’t create, and art and culture ultimately suffer. None of us want there to be fewer books or songs in... Continue reading
Posted 10 hours ago at hypebot
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By Alex Jae Mitchell, Co-Founder and CEO of Audiokite Having listened to probably more than a thousand artists as a songwriting contest judge and music startup person, I’m no stranger to giving feedback to musicians. And I have a confession to make: rarely is the feedback I give 100% honest. I’ll hear a track with major problems (out-of-tune vocals, scratchy production, uninspired lyrics, etc.) and tell the band “Maybe touch up the vocal production, but overall, it sounds great!” Actually, it doesn’t sound great. It sounds like a dying cat attacking an out-of-tune guitar. But I’m not going to say... Continue reading
Posted 11 hours ago at hypebot
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By Jamie Ludwig on Sonicbids.com A well-written bio is one of the best tools independent musicians have when it comes to making an impression on music journalists and editors. Before we even hear your song samples or are able to attend one of your shows, there’s a good chance we’ve glanced through your press materials. This is your opportunity to place yourself and your art in your chosen framework and tell your story exactly how you see fit. Unfortunately, there are many clichés and pitfalls that are easy to fall into that result in turning off the writer or causing... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at hypebot
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By James Shotwell, Social Media Coordinator at Haulix.com It’s funny how fast the music industry changes these days. A year ago many people would have claimed that crowdfunding was the future of the music business, but as many independent acts have learned over the year this is not always the case. Some audiences will be able to support the dreams of their favorite musicians, but that is not true for every talented musician with a diehard fans following their every move. For some, it takes a lot more than launching a free web page and asking for money, and today... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at hypebot
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By Nick Moorhead on Sonicbids.com People don’t buy CDs anymore. I still buy a couple of CDs a month, but that’s because I’m a music journalist who's too lazy to steal music online like everyone else (torrents confuse me). When I tell people about the latest CD I picked up at Newbury Comics, they either yawn and change the subject or look at me like I rode into town via horse and buggy. The point is, if you want someone to buy your physical media, you have to go above and beyond these days. Here are five ways to help... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at hypebot
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By Chris Robly on DIYMusician.com How to get the most bang for your buck when you print band t-shirts You might not admit it to anyone, but I’ll bet seeing a fan wearing your band’s t-shirt is one of the secret little highlights of your musical life. A striking band logo, a sweet design, quality fabric. Of course you want to print up quality t-shirts to sell to fans at your gigs and on your website. And you want to see your fans wearing those shirts out there in the world, helping to spread the word about your music. When... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at hypebot
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By Yannick Ilunga on TheJazzSpotlight.com This is the final part of the three-article series A Guide to Getting Gigs. As the title suggests, in What to Do Before Looking for Gigs I talked about what indie musicians should do before trying to get booked. In How to Look for Gigs, on the other hand, I went over some of the tools you can use if you have decided to look for gigs by yourself.This post is all about what you should think about and do, once your show dates have been confirmed. Take Care of Burocracy, Transportation and Accomodation This... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at hypebot
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By Steve Lawson from SteveLawson.net There’s one story that’s been circulating a lot over the last few days amongst musicians on social media – “2014 is first year ever with ZERO platinum-certified records” – it tells us that 2014 is (barring some kind of unforseen massive sales surge) the first year ever (ever??? no.) when no single band has had a platinum selling record. In the US. Even though the Frozen soundtrack has sold 3 Million copies. Meanwhile, 60 songs HAVE sold a million copies in the US. So what does this tell us? Without some much deeper analysis, not... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at hypebot
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By Bryan Kim on Bryan Kim This post is the first in a multi-part series on executing an optimal music crowdfunding campaign, gathered from my hands-on experience at Think Steady Inc. I’ll share a detailed roadmap of best practices, and if you’ll let me, indulge in a few off-the-wall theories on why they work. I’ll be discussing this fuller in person at SF Musictech Summit on Nov. 11, join me! In October of 2012, I wrote a piece titled “Crowd Patronage” in this very blog, theorizing about how early music Kickstarter campaigns were illuminating a path to the new “post-Napster”... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at hypebot
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By Jayce Varden from the Sonicbids Blog. One of the most rewarding opportunities for loyal fans in the 21st century is the ability to watch the artists they love create and release music in real time. Invaluable for the artists themselves is learning the process of constructing direct-to-fan strategies that work for both the band members and the public. Now a massive online community of musicians and their supporters, PledgeMusic enables artists of any size to take control of and monetize their artistic process, building connections and forging unprecedented fan engagement. Here are nine tried-and-true tips and best practices from... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at hypebot
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By Bobby Borg on Sonicbids.com Sales promotions are short-term incentives intended to stimulate a quick buying response in your target customer. Coupons, one-time exclusive offers, customer loyalty programs, two-for-the-price-of-one discounts, and limited-time prizes with purchase are all examples of sales promotions in the consumer world. While it's true you'll have to give away your music for free to build awareness and help start a buzz, sales promotions can be applied to everything, including merchandise, studio time, music lessons, concert tickets, and more. From choosing the right type of sales promotion that fits your band, to executing your sales promotions tastefully,... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at hypebot
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By Kim Kelly on Sonicbids Blog New York City's annual CMJ Music Marathon festival is right around the corner, and I thought this year's music industry conference-slash-festival-slash-shitshow would serve as a handy setting for a round of sage(ish) advice. CMJ is traditionally populated almost exclusively by badge-wielding, subway-fearing college radio kids, music business muckity-mucks of various description, and hapless music fans caught in their crossfires. The whole point of it is, ostensibly, to introduce or "break" new bands to the college radio audience, but it ends up being more of a citywide industry networking event fueled by free booze and... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2014 at hypebot
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By Tyler Hayes, Freelance Writer & Blogger Bandcamp is a website on a mission to provide musicians with the tools necessary to sell their recorded music--both digitally and physically. It's an easy way for artists to give their fans a solid commerce experience and make more money than selling through iTunes or Amazon. Despite all the positive work the company is doing in the music space, it still appears to be focused on selling downloads. This seems like a problem as the social consciousness is wrapped around the idea of unlimited and on-demand music streaming being the solution to the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 23, 2014 at hypebot
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By Alan Cross, Canadian Broadcaster, Radio Consultant. Guys like Thom Yorke and David Byrne can rage against the dying of the light as much as they want, but that won’t prevent streaming from eventually becoming the dominant way music is distributed and consumed. Is what we have right now perfect? No. The whole thing is still a money pit for everyone involved except the consumer. Since big problems still exist, though, shouldn’t more people be talking about how they can be solved? David Lowery (Cracker, Camper Van Beethoven) offers this on his site, The Trichordist: "It’s not that streaming can’t... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2014 at hypebot
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by Matthew Ebel from MatthewEbel.com Sometimes it frightens me what my fans give me the courage to attempt. I’m trying to stay calm and collected about this whole High Orbit Saves The Pandas thing, but underneath I’m chewing my fingernails down to the cuticle. What the hell was I thinking trying to cram science fiction, rock music, and comedy into an album when everyone keeps telling me albums are a dead medium in the first place? Let me back up a bit. To Nashville, in fact. Spending five years in the Music City taught me some very important lessons, most... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2014 at hypebot
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By Diana Hereld of Pathways in Music The fourth annual Berklee City Music Network Conference (BCMN) will take place at the Omni Los Angeles Hotel at California Plaza November 2-5. Geared toward music experts and young enthusiasts alike, this year's forum will brings in hundreds of attendees including music educators, students ranging from elementary to graduate levels, city of Los Angeles representatives, philanthropic foundations and key philanthropists, NARAS and Grammy representatives, arts advocates and families from the LA area. This year's conference, entitled "American Popular Music III: Innovations in Youth Development" will feature a host of compelling presentations and panel... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2014 at hypebot
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By Eric Barfield from EricBarfield.com 10. It builds loyal customers. Customers will come to you first when they need someone, because they know you'll help them find the right person, even if that person isn’t you. 9. It develops peer-to-peer relationships. Your musician friends will owe you for getting them gigs, and they might even throw a few back at you. 8. It builds trust between you and your clients. If clients know that if you'll only do a show if you're the best option, you have their best interest in mind (which you should, anyway). 7. It generates more... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2014 at hypebot
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From the INgrooves newsletter. 1. Today, the marketplace is dynamic! Understand how to maximize monetization for all platforms. Two key examples are YouTube and Spotify. YouTube channel maintenance should focus on: regular updates, thorough claiming procedures and integration with other social media channels. 2. On Spotify, fanbases should be built from within: get profiles verified, create dynamic playlists to engage fans, preview exclusive content on Spotify where appropriate, use the embeddable Spotify player across social platforms and explore the D2C merchandising opportunities that Spotify now offers. 3. Music marketing mind-shift: Marketing teams need to begin moving from driving "sales" to... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2014 at hypebot
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By Yanir Seroussi from BCRecommender I've been a Bandcamp user for a few years now and I love it. I love the fact that they pay out a significant share of the revenue directly to the artists, unlike other services. In addition, despite the fact that fans may stream all the music for free and even easily rip it, over $80M were paid out to artists through Bandcamp to date (including almost $3M in the last month). This serves as strong evidence that Bandcamp's focus on doing what's good for the artists is working out well. In the words of... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2014 at hypebot
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By Wallace Collins from Wallace Collins Entertainment Law Blog 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... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2014 at hypebot
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By Bobby Borg from SonicBids.com Direct marketing is the process of bypassing intermediaries to communicate directly with fans, build awareness, and generate sales. Emailing tour dates, texting announcements about contests, posting website links to your fundraisers, even phoning reminders and mailing postcards about your record release are all direct marketing methods. In all cases, the most important ingredient needed to ensure success is persuasive content. As they say, “Content is king.” Here are nine brief tips that can help make sure your fans follow your lead and fulfill your marketing goals. 1. Say the most important things first The first... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2014 at hypebot
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By Hugh McIntyre After 34 years of telling the world who is next to make it big and being ahead of the curve, the CMJ Music Marathon is taking a few cues from some of the more famous festivals of the world by focusing efforts on social. The legendary industry event recently unveiled their first ever app, with the aim being to make navigating the enormous festival just a bit easier. For an app—especially one focused solely on one five-day event in one city—it does a lot. There are five important sections of the CMJ 2014 app, each with it’s... Continue reading
Posted Oct 20, 2014 at hypebot
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By Andrew Apanov of Dotted Music and We Spin, a marketing education platform for musicians. For a Hypebot readers discount on We Spin's program, please see the end of the post. Hannah Donovan is co-founder and design director of This Is My Jam a music service for sharing song you are into the most right now. Before starting Jam, Hannah led design at Last.fm and has been working at the intersection of music, design and technology for the last decade. In this Stand Above The Noise interview, Hannah shared her thoughts on the state of design in the music industry... Continue reading
Posted Oct 17, 2014 at hypebot