Music Industry Predictions: Labels, Concerts, Licensing and More

This guest post is written by Jeff Rabhanartist manager, music-industry executive and international consultant. His clients have garnered twelve Grammy Awards, sold more than one hundred million records and generated over one billion dollars in global receipts. Rabhan currently serves as Chair of the Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

Fire up the crystal ball folks because it’s time to look and see what the future holds for many areas of the music industry and ultimately for many of you who are pursuing a career in the business. We’ve seen more change in the last decade then the previous 50 years combined, leaving many of you befuddled and wondering what tomorrow will bring.  While there’s no such thing as a sure thing in the music business, read on to see how today’s unanswered questions get answered tomorrow…

The Future of Record Labels

Can you imagine a major record company that only has a roster of 10 international superstars instead of 60 acts in various stages of development? It might not be so far-fetched.

Record companies are adept at doing three main things: getting songs on radio, effectively distributing records to countries around the world simultaneously, and marketing worldwide successful artists on a grand scale.

Not a week goes by where I don’t hear some young artist knock a major label for not developing artists. It’s not what they do anymore so why blame them? It’s like blaming a shoe store for not selling underwear.

It’s on you to build a story for yourself that makes you appealing to them if that’s your goal, and a catchy song is no longer enough to grab their attention.

What does this mean?

You will see label rosters shrinking down to their core. Look for labels to “specialize” in certain genres or styles of music. Imagine a Sony Music that only releases female pop records like Beyonce, Adele, and Shakira. Or an Interscope that becomes a hip-hop only label.

One thing is for sure: if it isn’t fit for radio, chances are you will not find it on a major label roster in the next five years. Which creates an opportunity for… independent labels.

Independent labels grabbed 32.6% of U.S. album sales in 2012, according to Soundscan stats.

Indie labels are experiencing a resurgence of visibility within the marketplace, mostly due to a successful recipe of mixing a clear vision, likeminded artistry, and a tight geographic radius, in a way that’s very similar to the success of labels like Sub Pop, Matador, and Mammoth Records in the early 90s.

The new normal is to be the big fish in a little pond and success continues to come for those labels with laser focus.

Bottom line is that there’s a lot of good music out there and most of it is not right for major labels anymore. There used to be a time when consumers bought releases from particular labels simply because the releases were so heavily and successfully curated that fans felt an allegiance and a belief that that label’s brand stood for quality. The best example of this was Def Jam in the early days. In the next several years look for indie labels to continue to pop up, grow their fanbase, and happily own their little piece of the world.

What does this mean for artists looking for a record deal?

Continue to think global but start by acting local. Take a look a the labels in your area that may be a good fit first and truly assess if you belong on a major label. Chances are you don’t in the new world.

The Future of Live Concerts

It’s no secret that most popular artists are making most of their bucks from concerts and brand partnerships. But what does the future of concerts look like and will this affect the artists as well as the fans?

Newsflash: we are already experiencing a shift in the way we see concerts. All of you are buying tickets to a show online — soon the hard ticket stub will be a thing of the past as you simply swipe your phone and go about your merry way. It’s not just concerts — we already use the same technology to get many other goods including movie tickets, airline flights, and many others.

That’s not news, you say! That’s just technology making the purchase easier.

You want to know what happens to that fan experience? You know, when you’re standing so close you can feel the artist sweat? If you are one of the lucky few to be that close, you probably waited all day and stood on your feet for hour after hour for that prized spot.

But many fans no longer want that live experience, especially in the cases of larger arena and stadium shows. I get it — by the time you buy the tickets, shlep to the venue, park your car, and buy your beer and t-shirt before finding your seats fighting the sea of other people doing the same thing all along the way, your wallet feels empty and the experience has lost its luster.

Festivals like Lollapalooza already stream live shows on YouTube. Image: Mashable.

Look for major growth in the streaming of concerts, especially for those aforementioned arena shows for two reasons: first, many fans would rather enjoy the show in the privacy and comfort of their own home and, next, because it gives artists another income stream.

Festivals like Coachella and Lollapalooza are already on board. Couple that with technology advances (holographic Tupac performances??) and you’ve got a movement. Look for YouTube and UStream to continue to lead the pack.

The live show is coming to you and you can decide just how you want to see it and wear your pajamas if you so desire.

What does this mean for the up-and-coming touring act or artist interested in touring?

Make technology your friend. Posting flyers to get the word out and making tickets available only at the venue hurts your chances of reaching maximum fan potential. Work with your venue to sell tickets online or experiment with streaming shows for a small fee either live or after the fact. Get creative with your YouTube channel and make live content a bigger part of your fan experience. It will build your buzz and bring more bodies to the venues and online events as your reputation builds a live band with surprises. Reverb Tip: Meanwhile, it doesn’t hurt to play live gigs while you get acquainted with live streaming. We recommend you try the free Gig Finder, which will connect you to the best venues in any town. 

The Future of Radio

Terrestrial radio is still the #1 way that people discover music, but that may be changing as we speak.

Local radio vs internet radio: which is better for indie artists?

The real question facing radio is: will it all become digital or will good ol’ AM/FM still have a presence? We know that if you aren’t driving, don’t have a car, or live in a major urban center like New York City, YouTube has become the destination for listening to music. Pandora and Spotify both have fairly robust internet radio presences, yet there are few things to consider as we look forward.

For those of you paying attention, have you been following the Internet Radio Fairness Act?  The IRFA wants to reduce the royalties being paid by internet music streaming services like Pandora.

On the other side, record labels and artists feel that the act will deprive rights holders of deserving income. The bill hasn’t been passed and my crystal ball tells me it won’t when nicknames for the bill include the “unfairness act” and the “paycheck reduction act.”

When the majority of the music community is against something, clearly there’s an issue, but it brings up many questions that will impact the future of radio.

Currently there are several ways that people use Internet radio services. From niche playlists to sites dedicated to discovering new artists.

Internet radio has the potential to break even bigger barriers than it has; yet copyright laws are hindering this evolution. Also keep in mind that in over 85 car models there is some form of Internet radio service integrated into the cars entertainment system. This issue needs to be figured out ASAP. Internet radio operates under a completely different rate than other forms of digital radio and everyone is taking notice.

Bottom line: There will always be radio, yet the way we access it will continue to change as wireless gets better and networks like 4G have more power.

Look for smarter recommendation-based software and more interactive and personalized experience — a theme that will repeat itself over and over in the growth of digital media and the technological advances that accompany it.

What does this mean for new artists looking to get exposure on the airwaves?

Don’t get your hopes up unless your music is ear candy for terrestrial radio and you’ve got a major label promoting your song. The sea of artists found on Spotify makes a breakthough difficult and new artists are rarely “discovered” via recommendation-based software platforms like Pandora. Look for local radio, specialty shows, college radio and a strong, creative Internet presence to get your music out. Reverb Tip: We recommend two great ways to get your music heard by more people: 1) Submit to opportunities — everything from festivals to online radio play; 2) Run a Promote It campaign on top music sites.

The Future of Licensing

Before you lament all of the changes or fear the demise of the traditional business, hold onto your hat because the future of licensing looks bright.

The opportunities for artists to get their songs placed on other outlets such as television, film, and video games are exponentially increasing. TV and film license fees have been decreasing and video games are allowing artists to make up for that loss. Video games are giving artists what’s known as performance-based royalties, which allow them to reach a new type of audience.

How does this impact the ever growing and evolving Internet?

Internet outlets are getting smarter! They’re creating exclusive content and licensing music for only online usage. Artists can now have their songs placed on everything from a Hulu original series to a series on Netflix. It used to be extremely difficult for new artists to get placements on TV/film. Now with all these new outlets, artists have many more opportunities to get heard and seen.

And when you speak about online content, you must bring YouTube into the conversation.

Will it remain an outlet for fly by night, flavor of the moment quasi-stars to reach critical acclaim, or is the future of TV at stake?  YouTube is undergoing a giant makeover within the next few years as premium content and niche channels are about to take over. YouTube has the potential to become the go-to platform for building business media in the future. They aim to develop channels that are topic specific and interactive — meaning viewers will get exactly what they want. The company has already invested 100 million dollars in developing premium channels that range from education to fashion.

This will also allow YouTube to form deeper integrations with the other companies and products like Google. Count on YouTube to remain on top and in control.

What does this mean for you?

Put down the guitar for a minute and get your fingers working on the computer to develop lists of outlets, shows, gaming properties and online networks to pitch music to. Unsigned, up-and-coming acts regularly get placements on networks programs these days and that trend is going to continue. Make music licensing a centerpiece of your story.

Welcome to the future!

KevinMusic Industry Predictions: Labels, Concerts, Licensing and More
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January’s Breaking Artists: Kudos to these ReverbNation Opportunity Winners!


BREAKING: Reverb Artists in the Spotlight

Wondering who submits to all those opportunities you see in your email inbox every week? And what happens after submissions close? Our monthly Breaking Artists newsletter, along with this nice, shiny blog post, breaks it down and shows you some of the opportunity winners.

Take a look and a listen, show your support for your fellow musicians and send them kudos in the comments.

Breaking Artists are selected by Reverb staff from opportunity winners. Increase your chances of being one of them by submitting to opportunities here >>

Performed at the Rock For Recovery…

Wicked Willy Rock for Recovery

Wicked Willy performed at the Rock For Recovery, A Benefit For Victims Of Hurricane Sandy.

New York-based Wicked Willy opened for multi-platinum recording artist Adam Gontier of Three Days Grace at the Rock For Recovery in NYC. The concert benefited victims of Hurricane Sandy. The folk group released a new EP, “Closer,” in June last year, which you can check out here.

“(…)It was great to be part of an event that allowed us to support those in our local neighborhoods who have been tragically impacted after the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy. The event was hosted by national rock radio icon Kayla Riley at the Gramercy Theatre, and it was fantastic to see members of the music community working together to help with the Hurricane Sandy relief effort. While the Wicked Willy band always enjoys putting on a rockin’ show, we’re even happier when we can make a positive impact.”

-Wicked Willy

Featured in Cen Cal Magazine…

Sabrina Signs

EDM artist Sabrina Signs.

Sabrina Signs, of San Jose, got a featured in Cen Cal Magazine. After her family was hit by America’s 2009 recession,  Sabrina found herself without a home. However, the teenager overcame this obstacle, drawing on her own experiences to create some awesome music and become a teen advocate for the homeless. Sabrina has experimented with a variety of musical styles, from Acoustic Rock, to Pop, to her current focus on Electronic Dance Music.

Featured on Pumped Audio | Amplify…

Paddy Thorne

Paddy Thorne had his music featured on Pumped Audio | Amplify.

Electronic artist Paddy Thorne was featured on Pumped Audio | Amplify, the sister site of online EDM magazine Pumped Audio dedicated to highlighting the best in up-and-coming electronic music talent. This marks the first time the UK-based DJ has won a ReverbNation opportunity.

“Like most artists, I have been writing tunes for many years and have spent hundreds, if not thousands, of hours promoting them. To receive the accreditation of a well respected online magazine such as Pumped Audio | Amplify has been a real boost to my confidence and has given me renewed drive to get more tunes written and released onto the ReverbNation platform(…) So far I have been featured on the main site [] and have more features coming soon. Excellent :)”

-Paddy Thorne

Got airplay on FM Channels…

Goodbye Friday

New Jersey Pop Rock group Goodbye Friday.

Goodbye Friday won a feature on FM Channels, the world’s newest online radio network. Check out the music video of the Pop Rock quartet’s single “Scream For Me Baby” here.

“As with any chance to get your music heard by old and new fans, it’s truly special and we felt blessed. It was a great feeling(…) [and] terrific exposure.”

-Goodbye Friday

Featured on Xtreme iRadio…


NC-based Dreamkiller.

Alternative Rock band Dreamkiller won heavy rotation on Xtreme iRadio, a streaming radio website that plays the best new rock from signed and unsigned bands. In addition to winning airplay, Dreamkiller also secured a spot on the Xtreme Reverb Headliners national tour!

“We are blown away from the exposure we’ve had so far and experience that we’ll receive very soon. They play our music in between major signed artists and promote us on their social media sites. We have been preparing for tour by writing brand new songs and plan to have a release ready to go when we head out(…) The tour is being set up for the summer of 2013 so stay tuned. Until then, feel free to request us on their station Also, download the free app called “TuneIn Radio” and listen on your mobile device! “


Congrats to all of January’s “Breaking” Artists!

Don’t want to miss out on the next opportunity?

There are four ways you can use to stay up-to-date on the latest gigs (we recommend using all of them to ensure nothing gets missed!):

  • Follow our updates on Twitter (@Gigs and @ReverbNation) and Facebook
  • Check the email updates we send you
  • Check the latest Opportunities on this page
  • Go to your Control Room on your Reverb page > click “Opportunities”

So, where’s your next gig?

KevinJanuary’s Breaking Artists: Kudos to these ReverbNation Opportunity Winners!
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VIDEO: ReverbNation 2012 Year In Review

Thanks for making 2012 absolutely amazing!

2012 was a great year for us and for you, independent artists! This year, 2.5 million of you…

  • Topped 15 million in songs uploaded.
  • Logged more than 5 million shows.
  • Had over 1 billion monthly views on YouTube.

On top of that, ReverbNation…

  • Reached 1 million of Likes on Facebook and over 160,000 followers on Twitter.
  • Opened a new Twitter channel for finding @Gigs.
  • Hired 25 new employees.
  • Moved to a new office space.

We’ve got big plans for you in 2013! Stay tuned…

KevinVIDEO: ReverbNation 2012 Year In Review
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Opportunities on Tap: Eric Clapton’s Crossroads, KahBang, and Rock for Dimes

Big performance opportunities for you this week!

Play Madison Square Garden at Eric Clapton’s Crossroads 2013

Location: New York, NY
Genre: Alternative, Blues, Country, Rock, Americana, Indie, Jam, Singer Songwriter, Funk and Instrumental

This is your chance to perform on the main stage at the Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival at the iconic Madison Square Garden in New York City. This two-day festival will feature music from the legendary Eric Clapton and friends, including Albert Lee, Allan Holdsworth, Allman Brothers Band, BB King, Booker T, Brad Paisley, Buddy Guy, Citizen Cope, Earl Klugh, Gary Clark Jr., Jeff Beck, Jimmie Vaughan, John Mayer, John Scofield, Jonny Lang, Keb Mo, Keith Urban, Los Lobos, Robbie Robertson, Robert Cray, Robert Randolph, Taj Mahal, Vince Gill and more!

All acts that submit will be reviewed by a panel of judges including world renowned guitar players Paul Gilbert, Blues Saraceno, Audley Freed, and Peter Stroud. Four (4) acts will be selected by these judges to be entered into a final four fan voting contest, in which fans will pick the winner! Prizes include a feature in Guitar World Magazine and $10,000 in Ernie Ball Music Man Gear.

Perform at KahBang Music, Art & Film Festival 2013

Location: Bangor, ME
Genre: Alternative, Blues, Country, DJ, Electronica, Folk, Hip Hop, Other, Pop, R&B/Soul, Rock, Americana, Bluegrass, Dance, Indie, Rap, Singer Songwriter, Punk, Dubstep, Electronic Dance Music, Funk and House

KahBang is an annual summer discovery festival, which transforms Bangor, Maine into the largest music, art and film showcase in New England. For four days, thousands of festival-goers descend on downtown Bangor and the waterfront festival grounds to experience over 75 musicians, dozens of films, art galleries & installations, special events, parties and more. Past performers include Bassnectar, Paper Diamond, Wale, My Morning Jacket, Grace Potter & The Nocturnals, BoB, Lupe Fiasco, Atmosphere, Chromeo, OK Go, Surfer Blood, Atomic Tom, Ra Ra Riot, Matt & Kim, and Lady Lamb the Beekeeper. Thirty-five (35) performance slots are available to ReverbNation artists and bands. Join festival season!

2012 Festival Highlights

KahBang 2012 Promo #2 from Shadow Puppets Entertainment on Vimeo.

Open at Rock for Dimes 2013

Location: Canada
Genre: Blues, Country, Hip Hop, Metal, Other, Pop, R&B/Soul, Rock, Reggae, Bluegrass, Dance, Indie, Rap, Singer Songwriter, Punk, Funk, House, Instrumental, Rockabilly and Ska

Ready to rock? Rock for Dimes is a battle of the bands fund raising opportunity for bands looking to perform in support of March of Dimes Canada. Rock for Dimes began nine years ago in Toronto, ON and is now presented from coast-to-coast in over 10 locations across Canada with events from Vancouver, BC to Halifax, NS. Funds generated from the event are used to support children and adults who live with a physical disability. One ReverbNation artist or band will be selected to open at event. Click on the location nearest you to find more info >>

Montreal (coming soon)
Saulte Ste. Marie
Sherkston Shore (coming soon)
Windsor (coming soon)

Artist Compensation: All musicians will receive a swag bag filled with discount coupons and “swag”. Bands receive one comp ticket for every 10 tickets sold. All ticket sales go to March for Dimes Canada. Prizes are awarded for each event as well. The selected artist will be eligible for prizes outlined below.

Prize Packages: (Prizes may vary at each event.)
– 1st place Trophy/Plaque (selected by judges)
– $200 Gift Card from Long & McQuade Music
– Studio Recording Package
– All participating bands receive a $50 gift card

Don’t want to miss out on upcoming opportunities?

Here are four ways you can stay up-to-date on our latest gigs. We recommend using all of them to ensure nothing gets missed! Stalk us, we don’t mind. >

  • Follow our updates on Twitter (@ReverbNation or @Gigs) and Facebook
  • Check the email updates we send you
  • Check the latest Opportunities on this page
  • Go to your Control Room on your Reverb page > click “Opportunities”
KevinOpportunities on Tap: Eric Clapton’s Crossroads, KahBang, and Rock for Dimes
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Opportunities on Tap: Wakarusa, Telluride Blues & Brews, and Florida Music Fest!

Check out this week’s new opportunities generating valuable exposure for emerging ReverbNation artists.

Wakarusa Music Festival 2013

Genres: Alternative, Blues, DJ, Electronica, Folk, Pop, Rock, Reggae, Americana, Bluegrass, Dance, Indie, Jam, Singer Songwriter and World
Location: Ozark, AR

The Wakarusa Music Festival is a premiere, grassroots event in the nationwide outdoor music scene attracting folks from all 50 U.S. states and beyond. Wakarusa differs from other festivals of its kind in that it strives to keep music at the center of the experience. Although camping, vendors, the beauty of Mother Nature and many other attractions add to the event, the music is non-stop and always at the forefront.

It has hosted legendary musicians such as Wilco, Ben Harper, The Flaming Lips, Sam Bush, Cake, My Morning Jacket, The String Cheese Incident, and so many more. Two ReverbNation artists will be selected to perform at this year’s festival.

Selected Artists Receive:
– Compensation for their performance
– Great exposure playing in front of more than 15,000 festival attendees

If you are ready to jam out with some of the greats?

Telluride Blues & Brews Festival 2013

Genres: Alternative, Blues, DJ, Electronica, Folk, Pop, Rock, Reggae, Americana, Bluegrass, Dance, Indie, Jam, Singer Songwriter and World
Location: Telluride, CO

Renowned as one of the most scenic and intimate music festivals in the country, Telluride Blues & Brews takes place in the world-famous resort town of Telluride, Colorado, in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. Blues & Brews is a three-day celebration of live music and microbrews held at Telluride Town Park, nestled in the valley of stunning 13,000-foot mountain peaks. The festival offers an eclectic mix of live blues, funk, jam band, rock, gospel and soul performances, and some of the best microbreweries in the country, with a wide variety of food and craft vendors, children’s activities, late night shows, and much more.

ReverbNation artists are being considered for performance slots at the 20th Annual Telluride Blues & Brews Festival, performing alongside some the biggest names in music. Last year’s line up consists of none other than Phil Lesh, Gov’t Mule, The B-52’s, The Chris Roberson Brotherhood, Robert Randolph & The Family Band and many more. The festival is also being streamed to over 20,000 people. How’s that for exposure?

The B-52’s at Telluride Blues & Brews 2012

12th Annual Florida Music Festival

Genres: All
Location: Orlando, FL

FMF2013 welcomes musicians of all genres to submit for a chance to perform at the 12th Anniversary of the Florida Music Festival. At least 50 ReverbNation artists will be selected to perform for more than 4,000 festival goers each night. Selected artists will also receive a free badge to the industry conference.

Coming April 17-20, 2013, FMF showcases more than 150 bands on 15 different stages. Past headliners include Flogging Molly, Third Eye Blind, The Dirty Heads, JJ Grey & Mofro, Minus the Bear, Buckcherry, Less Than Jake, Anberlin, Easy Star Allstars, Better Than Ezra, members of Matchbox Twenty, Creed and many more.

For more than decade, the Florida Music Festival has helped gain industry exposure for great previously unsigned artists like Taylor Swift, Flyleaf, Manchester Orchestra, Black Tide, The Academy Is, and There For Tomorrow from the who’s who of the music industry, and thousands of music fans in Downtown Orlando.

Previous conference keynote speakers include:
• Kevin Lyman – Warped Tour Founder
• Melvin Benn – Reading & Leeds Producer
• Monte & Avery Lipman – Universal Republic Founders (Taylor Swift/Jack Johnson/3 Doors Down)
• Steve Robertson – Atlantic Records VP of A&R (Shinedown/Paramore)
• John Janick – Fueled By Ramen Founder (Fallout Boy/Gym Class Heroes/Paramore)
• Rodney Jerkins – Producer (Michael Jackson/Beyonce/Alicia Keys/Lady GaGa/Kanye West)
• Dave Siegel – Producer (TI/Soulja Boy/Christina Aquilera/Enrique Iglesias)

Apply to the Florida Music Festival and Conference!

Crowds at Florida Music Festival 2012

Don’t want to miss out on upcoming opportunities?

Here are four ways you can stay up-to-date on our latest gigs. We recommend using all of them to ensure nothing gets missed! Stalk us, we don’t mind. >

  • Follow our updates on Twitter (@ReverbNation or @Gigs) and Facebook
  • Check the email updates we send you
  • Check the latest Opportunities on this page
  • Go to your Control Room on your Reverb page > click “Opportunities”
KevinOpportunities on Tap: Wakarusa, Telluride Blues & Brews, and Florida Music Fest!
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Calling all bands: Hard Rock Cafe wants to break the next big band and send them on a world tour! Enter for free.

Think you’re the next undiscovered worldwide rock star? Here’s your chance to find out. Hard Rock Cafe is searching for inspiring local bands to compete in Hard Rock Rising 2013, a high-stakes global battle of the bands competition.


Why compete?

Hard Rock Rising is presented by Hard Rock Café, so you know it’s legit. Additionally, the prize package is ridiculous: play a World Tour, make an album and video with Hard Rock Records, and win new gear valued at $10,000. Entering is FREE!

Here’s what Hey Monea!, winner of last year’s Hard Rock Rising, had to say before opening for Bruce Springsteen in London:

“We open the door of our trailer and John Fogerty is right outside being interviewed by a camera crew. There are literally five video cameras following us to the stage and photographers snapping pictures of us and I’m as excited as I’ve ever felt in my life. Wired. Butterflies. Everything. My brain wouldn’t shut off.”

Credit: The Repository

You want in!? Here are the guidelines to enter:

  • You need a ReverbNation profile. They’re FREE!
  • Each band/artist may enter through no more than ONE Hard Rock location—there are 96 participating cafes worldwide!
  • You or one of your bandmates must live in the same country as that location.

Here’s how it works:

  • Phase 1: First round winners are determined by fan downloads on participating Hard Rock Facebook pages. One download equals one vote.
  • Phase 2: Top vote getters play in a series of live competitions and one winner from each location will be crowned by their peers. See locations below.
  • Phase 3: The 96 winners from Phase 2 will then battle it out in a global download contest on Facebook to gain the most votes.
  • Phase 4: The Top 25 highest vote-getters will be judged by a panel of celebrity judges and music industry VIPs to select the last band standing, along with two runner-ups.

The first place winner will experience the ultimate rock star treatment — a World Tour to experience cities including Sydney, Tokyo, Hong Kong, London, Chicago and Honolulu, the opportunity to make an album and video with Hard Rock Records, and an insane amount of band gear.

So what are you waiting for? The deadline for entry is January 21. 

Here’s the list of participating Hard Rock Cafe locations. If you see a city that’s close to you, click on it and read the details and full rules. It won’t cost you a dime, so don’t miss the opportunity of a lifetime­! Enter today!

United States & Canada

Atlanta, Georgia

Atlantic City, New Jersey

Biloxi, Mississippi

Boston, Massachusetts

Chicago, Illinois

Cleveland, Ohio

Dallas, Texas

Denver, Colorado

Destin, Florida

Detroit, Michigan

Foxwoods, Connecticut

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Hollywood Blvd, California

Hollywood, Florida

Honolulu, Hawaii

Houston, Texas

Indianapolis, Indiana

Key West, Florida

Lake Tahoe, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada

Louisville, Kentucky

Memphis, Tennessee

Miami, Florida

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Nashville, Tennessee

New Orleans, Louisiana

New York, New York

Niagara Falls, New York

Orlando, Florida

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Phoenix, Arizona

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

San Antonio, Texas

San Diego, California

San Francisco, California

Seattle, Washington

St. Louis, Missouri

Tampa, Florida

Toronto, Canada

Washington, DC

Just participating in Hard Rock Calling could mean new fans, new friends and a lot of local publicity for you and your band. Here’s what some of last year’s participants had to say:

“This is a brilliant platform for amateur bands like us to get recognized. Thank you for the opportunity and we hope you will continue this competition for years to come.”

“Cheers to ReverbNation and to Hard Rock Cafe for putting on such a vast competition that puts local talent in the spotlight.”

“We are grateful to have had the opportunity to participate and perform in this competition. We would also like to again thank everyone involved from ReverbNation and Hard Rock for their help and support in enabling us to participate. More venues should support original music as this competition did. Allowing bands to showcase their own music and style is something we need more of!”

“It was an awesome and innovative experience for us. Looking forward to more associations like these. Helps us to know the true caliber of our music.”

KevinCalling all bands: Hard Rock Cafe wants to break the next big band and send them on a world tour! Enter for free.
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Top 3 things musicians need in 2013

Hey musicians, what are your resolutions for 2013? Want to release a new album? Find new fans? Help others? Make it big or just pay the bills? If you’re like a lot of Reverb artists, it’s probably all of the above.

Well, listening to you (and a couple of million other musicians around the world) we’ve boiled it down to three things:

  1. Get more fans
  2. Sell more music
  3. Save money

Am I right? In that case, ReverbNation’s got you covered. Follow our advice below to start the new year off right:


Think about it. You already spend money on instruments, on food and gas when you’re touring, on beer when you’re gigging. You should be thinking of promotion as just as important as putting gas in the van, just as rewarding as a cold one after a show.

I have a friend who spent almost $10,000 on his new album, but then he didn’t do anything to promote it. Does it sound familiar?

Maybe it’s not the investment that’s holding you back. A lot of bands just don’t know where to begin. That’s precisely why we developed Promote It. We’ve made it drop dead simple to create custom ads to promote your music on all the sites music fans flock to:  Pandora, YouTube, Facebook, Billboard, MTV and hundreds of others. Trust me when I say, you WANT to be where they are. Plus, it’s completely affordable — campaigns start at just $5/day. And if you’ve never tried Promote It, we’ll even let you run your first campaign absolutely FREE.

“With Promote It, I can get the same type of promotion as a major label and still be on an indie budget. Promote It is such an easy and effective way to get new fans for my music.” 

Whatever you’ve got going on — a new album release, a new song or a new video (coming soon) — we know that Promote It is the best and easiest way to get the word out there, get heard and gather in new fans. If you can think of any better way, let us know in the comments!

Try Promote It now. Free trial available for first time Promote It customers >>


Have you heard? We’ve just launched a new program called Music for Good and we couldn’t be more excited! For the first time ever, you can now choose to sell your songs directly from your Reverb profile.

Artists choosing to participate select a charity they’d like to support and for every $1.29 song they sell, half the proceeds go to their new non-profit partner.

Music For Good is the new way to sell music.

We’ve never done anything like this before, but it’s really a natural. We know that musicians like to support good causes — whether it’s an indie band playing a local fundraiser or a major celebrity effort for disaster relief. Musicians have influence, they have power. Can you imagine what 2.5 million ReverbNation musicians can do?? Together we know you can have a huge impact fighting disease, hunger, poverty and more — all while spreading beautiful music.

PLUS — and this is very important — we believe this partnership will help every artist sell more music. It gives people a reason to pull out the credit card on music again. It kicks piracy in the butt!

The way we see it (and we think you’ll see it too), the Music For Good program accomplishes two things: it supports charities AND it gets fans to spend money on music again. It’s good for charities and it’s good for your wallet. As a bonus, it’s good for your soul.

Are you an artist, but not on Reverb?

Already on Reverb?

Music fans: Want to buy some music and help a charity?


This one’s a no brainer. If you already use one of ReverbNation’s premium services (press kits, digital distributions, newsletters, etc), or even paid services from another site, the smart thing is to switch to the Pro Bundle.

For less than $20 a month, you get ALL of the core marketing services you need to manage your career and more. Yes — digital press kit, email templates, a mobile app, widgets, plus digital distribution that expands every year — while the price stays the same. Holy smokes. That’s less than topping off your gas tank, buying Starbucks lattes for your friends, or getting a large 3-topping pizza in New York!

The Pro Bundle costs less per month than a large 3-topping pizza from Domino’s in NYC.

You’ll save mega bucks AND because it’s all in one spot, you’ll save time. I mean, if you prefer, you could go to Sonicbids for your press kit, Tunecore for your digital distribution, and FanBridge for your newsletter, Mobile Roadie for your mobile app, etc etc… but why go through the trouble of logging in at eight sites different sites when you can use just one? Plus you’ll get the added bonus of having just one super great support team to answer any questions. Like I said, it’s a no brainer.

Start marketing your music now >>

That’s it, folks. We truly believe the tools mentioned above will help you achieve your marketing goals in 2013. Our mission is — and always has been — ARTISTS FIRST. Now go out and make some awesome music!

And let us know what your 2013 resolutions are in the comments below.

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