Expert Music Career Advice For DIY Musicians
4 Times You Shouldn't Take the Gig
The Number One Mistake Bands Make Right After Booking a Gig
The Ultimate EQ Cheat Sheet for Every Common Instrument
15 Reality Checks Young Artists Need to Hear

Recording, Honing Your Craft

Nov 10, 2016 06:00 AM

Rob Lanterman

5 Ways to Ensure Your Band Will Kill It in the Studio

Image via Shutterstock

Before you enter the studio to share your music with the world, keep in mind that a tight practice or live set may not be enough. There are things that come out on record that you might not notice beforehand but will throw the listener for a loop (and I mean that in a bad way).

No Room for Divas: Why You Should Leave Your Ego Behind

Image via Shutterstock

This last spring, I watched the band Culture Abuse play the Boise Knitting Factory opening for The Story So Far. Sometime during the set, vocalist David Kelling addressed the crowd, comprised mostly of starstruck teenagers waiting to watch TSSF, with a speech unlike any I would expect to hear at a show that big. “Hey, nobody in a band is better than you!” Kelling said with a wide grin on his face, and you could tell he meant it. “Anything you see us doing on this stage, you can do, too.”

His message was important and one I’d love to hear from artists at any level of success. Memories come to mind of local support bands leaving once they play (and taking all of their friends with them), or stories of touring artists demanding fans to refill their drinks, as if fans should feel lucky to be in their presence (a good friend of mine actually was on the fan end of this). Stay humble and keep a few things in mind.

Be Your Own Record Label: The Essentials of PR and Promotion

Image via Shutterstock

Read part one of this series: Be Your Own Record Label: Everything You Need to Know About Distribution

 

Pressing a record is one thing; distributing it is another. PR and promotion are the last part of this holy trinity and, like distribution, it takes a ton of time and effort. 

The following tips are based on my personal experience running a label and being in bands, trying to get the word out about music I put money and time into. Feel free to tell me your methods that have worked better in the comments below! Maybe we can help each other out.

The 3 Types of Performance Mistakes Musicians Make (And What to Do About Them)

Image via flypaper.soundfly.com

This article orginally appeared on Soundfly.

 

Back in high school, my senior project advisor told me, “There’s no such thing as a perfect performance.” And then immediately busted out an incredible drum solo. I’ve never forgotten that moment. I just assumed that being able to pull out a great solo on a whim meant he must be telling the truth. While that’s not quite how the world works, I continue to find truth in his words.

Thelonious Monk is famous for saying, “There are no wrong notes; some are just more right than others.” It’s true that everyone – and I mean everyone – makes mistakes during live performances. In a duet with Kelsea Ballerini at this year’s ACMs, superstar Nick Jonas played a guitar solo that ended with some very noticeable mistakes (around 0:45). But he’s a professional. He wrapped up his solo, brushed it off, didn’t get frustrated, and finished out his set like a star.

Be Your Own Record Label: Everything You Need to Know About Distribution

Photo by Barry Blackburn via Shutterstock

When I started my record label in 2015, I didn’t really know what I was doing, and it’s been a series of trial and error ever since. However, I'm repeatedly reminded of something Kurt Ballou (of Converge fame) said in an interview with Party Smasher Inc. about making one’s own opportunities: “Pretend you know what you’re doing until you do.”

If you want to start a label, or do a label’s functional job for your own musical project, just start doing it and figure it out as you go. Here are some things that I'm doing as a label owner that might help you and save you some time if you choose to take this path as well.

I’ve decided to split my year’s worth of knowledge into two sections: distribution and promotion. This segment will be about distribution. (Note: this is the step you typically take after pressing a record. For more on pressing a record, see my last Sonicbids article here.)