Expert Music Career Advice For DIY Musicians
4 Guitar Gimmicks to Avoid at All Costs
7 Practice Habits All Successful Musicians Have in Common
6 Stage Hacks to Engage a Crowd
4 Common PR Mistakes That Make Your Band Look Unprofessional

5 Forgotten Ways the Beatles Changed Pop Music

Image via Shutterstock

Few bands command as much respect and as much controversy as the Beatles. Whether it’s influencing the sound and style of rock 'n' roll, the fashion industry, songwriting, or just plain being a celebrity, there's little the Beatles haven't done to influence the pop music world.

That can make it difficult to remember all the interesting things the lads from Liverpool pulled off in their short time together. And with so many accomplishments across a broad spectrum of pursuits, many of the most popular stories are the ones that continue to be repeated. But what about some of their lesser known achievements? With a band as complex as the Beatles, their subtlest moments have become some of their most powerful. These five forgotten ways the Beatles changed pop music are, in retrospect, maybe just as important as their obvious achievements.

Taxes for Musicians: A Simple Guide to All the Forms You'll Need

Image via Shutterstock

So you finally finished the last of your last holiday gigs and the New Year is here, which also means that it's tax season. You may soon be receiving a number of forms you'll be expected to use when filing your taxes before the April 15 deadline. But in case you think that the titles of the forms piling up on your desk sound more like a phone book than a way to get a refund, here are some basic explanations of the most common tax forms for musicians and when you'll need them.

sxsw, road to austin

Feb 10, 2016 08:00 AM

Jhoni Jackson

Expectations vs. Reality: 12 Lessons From SXSW Veterans for First-Time Performers

January May (image courtesy of the band)

Every week leading up to SXSW, we'll be sharing the exciting journeys of Sonicbids bands from all around the world in our 2016 Road to Austin series. Follow along to get insight on the planning and preparation that goes into it, a firsthand look at life on the road, tips from SXSW veterans, and much more. Join the conversation by using #RoadToAustin on social media – we'd love to hear from you!

Prepare all you want, but there's no avoiding an involuntary jaw drop upon arriving at SXSW for the first time. The mass of people, music blaring from all angles, the promotional pushing of trial-size beverages and branded tchotchke on every corner – it's all very overwhelming. And that's just the likely experience of an attendee. Performers have even more to contend with, from competing for listeners to figuring out how the hell to load in amid the chaos.

We asked bands who've been through it firsthand about their expectations, the reality of SXSW, and what they wish they'd known the first time around. The festival, although immensely awesome, can also be an unpredictable and unapologetic beast. These 12 tips will help you maximize its possilities instead of succumbing to its pitfalls.

Performing, Honing Your Craft, piano

Feb 10, 2016 07:00 AM

Caleb Hsu

How to Get a More Robust and Responsive Piano Tone

shutterstock_229974430Image via Shutterstock

We’ve discussed unique exercises to increase dexterity while playing piano, and now we’d like to extend our best tips on creating the best piano tone. Contrary to popular belief, piano is an extremely sensitive and dynamic instrument. Due to its size, the potential for booming triple fortés is expansive, as well as the prospect of barely whispered attacks. We’ll cover ways to hack science and utilize momentum and inertia to generate the most responsive piano sounds.

5 Ways to Screw Up Your Band Photos

Image via Shutterstock

Photo shoots are critical. They provide the visual of your band and they should complement and support your sound. There shouldn't be a disconnect. I don't care if you have an artful presentation or seek to elevate mystique. If you're starting out, you still need to have a strong and memorable visual in the form of a photo. These photos will accompany media coverage of your band and help you become recognizable, which is mission critical.

Here's what not to do with your band photos or photo shoot.