Demystifying the Recording Studio with Mitch Easter

For beginners, the studio can seem like a mystery zone, a place where MP3 files are distilled from an unknown alloy of instruments, cables, and knobs.

Even for experienced musicians, there is an emotional element to the process that can complicate things. Long hours, attention to the smallest details, and constant repetition can swing them from rewarding highs to frustrating lows.

To help shed some light on this complex topic, we sat down with producer Mitch Easter (R.E.M., Susanne Vega, Pavement, Wilco) to discuss common misconceptions about recording and address basic questions that might improve your next (or first) studio experience.

SamDemystifying the Recording Studio with Mitch Easter
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Booking Shows Locally: Tips From Venues and Talent Buyers

In my last post, I discussed the value of being a part of your own local music community. As a follow-up, I talked to a few venue owners and talent buyers to get their insights into how artists can get the most out of their local scene.

Be Good

Yes, this may be an obvious piece of advice. But you’d be surprised at how often artists spend more time worrying about things other than their music. Richard Sloven, talent buyer for the Knitting Factory – Brooklyn NYC  says:

Richard Sloven, Talent Buyer for The Knitting Factory

Richard Sloven, Talent Buyer for The Knitting Factory

“You can spend endless energy trying to come up with marketing gimmicks or spending money on PR, videos, recording, etc., but it doesn’t really mean anything if you aren’t good.”

Essentially, you need to be sure that your live product is as finely tuned as it can possibly be. None of the hard work spent promoting or packaging your music is worth a thing if you can’t capture someone’s attention in a live setting.
Mark Connor, talent buyer/owner for Slim’s and The Cave (Raleigh/Chapel Hill, NC) says:

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Mark Connor, Talent Buyer for Slim’s and The Cave (Photo © Ian Dunn)

“People see and hear music in many places in their lives, and if you aren’t special, then there won’t be much you can do to overcome that,”  

SamBooking Shows Locally: Tips From Venues and Talent Buyers
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May Breaking! Musicians Keeping a Beat through ReverbNation Opportunities

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Artists use ReverbNation every month to vie for the chance to headline festivals, be featured in top magazines, play showcases in front of music industry pros and take advantage of all the opportunities to be seen and heard. So, if you’re wondering who submits to opportunities and what happens after submissions close, hear from the musicians themselves in the post below. Watch, listen and congratulate them in the comments. Increase your chances of being one of them and submit to an opportunity now.

Took the stage in front of 4,000 at the Florida Music Festival

A handful of talented ReverbNation bands were able to perform at this year’s Florida Music Festival, which had around 4,000 attendees for each of the festival’s three days. Bands like Our Future Leaders, Bloody Jug Band, and David Lareau and the Copperpots were familiar with the annual festival and were excited to see that ReverbNation was a key player in festival submissions. Audiences were thrilled with their performances, and all of the groups who submitted through ReverbNation hope to be a part of the excitement in 2015.

Not only were these bands a part of one of the most popular festivals in all of Florida, but they were able to improve their own standing as a local and up-and-coming act because of their participation. 

Our Future Leaders for ReverbNation

Our Future Leaders, ReverbNation artist since 2007.

“Being able to perform alongside huge national acts really lends up some credibility as an independent band. Promoters and venues always like to see what acts and events you’ve performed at previously.” – Our Future Leaders

SamMay Breaking! Musicians Keeping a Beat through ReverbNation Opportunities
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New Twitter Features Help Take Photo Sharing to the Next Level

Twitter has been rolling out tons of new changes recently. Taking a page out of Instagram’s playbook, the folks at Twitter recently made updates that take a more photo-friendly approach to your feed. While it’s always been possible to post photos to Twitter, now you can:

  • Post multiple photos at once
  • Add filters to a photo
  • Tag your friends and followers to keep the conversation going

Show, Don’t Tell

Ever heard this old saying? It’s more relevant than ever, especially since highly-visual platforms like Instagram and Facebook have become the places we share news about our life and music. Enhanced photos options on Twitter will provide another way to share with your friends and fans. Plus, the new features can help drive more social engagement with your posts, spreading your music even further than before.

SamNew Twitter Features Help Take Photo Sharing to the Next Level
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8 Ways To Make Your Music Video Debut and Get Noticed

This is a guest post from Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan, authors of The Indie Band Survival Guide and creators of Making Money with Music

Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan: 8 Ways to Make Your Music Video Debut and Get Noticed

“[Chertkow and Feehan] are the ideal mentors for aspiring indie musicians who want to navigate an ever-changing music industry.” – Billboard Magazine

The most popular music search engine in the world isn’t even music-focused – it’s YouTube. The numbers are staggering: YouTube generates over 800 million unique visitors each month. But even more incredibly, it generates over 100 million social actions on videos every week, including comments, likes, and most importantly for musicians, shares.

Unlike audio, video goes “viral.” The rise of popular video-clip platform, Vine, in recent months, with it’s 6-second viral videos, is further proof video is where the action is. Plus, with each share, a video generates exposure. So, you need to get your music up there in some video form or another.

Sam8 Ways To Make Your Music Video Debut and Get Noticed
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April Breaking! Musicians Keeping a Beat through ReverbNation Opportunities

March's Breaking Artists from ReverbNation

Each month, hundreds of thousands of musicians submit to opportunities through ReverbNation. Artists vie for the chance to headline festivals, be featured in top magazines, play showcases in front of music industry pros and take advantage of all the opportunities to be seen and heard. So, if you’re wondering who submits to opportunities and what happens after submissions close, hear from the musicians themselves in the post below. Watch, listen and congratulate them in the comments. Increase your chances of being one of them and submit to an opportunity now.

Broadcast to more than 40,000 listeners in Denver

Fit For Rivals for ReverbNation

Fit for Rivals, ReverbNation artist since 2008.

SamApril Breaking! Musicians Keeping a Beat through ReverbNation Opportunities
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VOTE NOW! 80 ReverbNation Artists Chosen As Finalists For Hard Rock Rising 2014

Congratulations to the 80 ReverbNation Artists who have reached the global voting round of Hard Rock Rising 2014!

For the past eight weeks, top-voted bands competed at various Hard Rock Café locations, performing live for fans and judges. The winners were selected to move on to the global competition and represent their city as a local finalist, competing for the grand prize!

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ReverbNation band October Chorus performed at the Myrtle Beach Hard Rock Cafe for a chance at the Grand Prize.

In the next phase, the top five virtual bands and the winning band from each participating Hard Rock Cafe and will go head to head to find one grand prize winner and two runners up.

What a super accomplishment for the 80 finalists — whittled down from more than 10,000 bands. They’re competing for the deal of a lifetime: the chance to perform at Hard Rock Live Rome, for 40,000 fans in Italy or new gear valued at $10,000. Amazing, right? Here’s where you come in…

Artists NEED your votes! Check out the 80 bands who have made the cut and support your favorite band by downloading their song on the Facebook app. Your votes are what drive them forward in the competition and will help crown the next winner of the Hard Rock Rising Global Battle of the Band.

Voting closes May 7th at 4pm EST.

 

Vote Now!

 

SamVOTE NOW! 80 ReverbNation Artists Chosen As Finalists For Hard Rock Rising 2014
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New Twitter Profile Update: Let’s Get Visual

Sick of us talking about the importance of cover art yet? Prepare yourselves, here comes another one.

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ReverbNation artist Dylan Jenet Collins’ Twitter Page was one of the first to receive the update

This week, Twitter officially announced that it will be launching a brand-new design for their profiles. Well, brand-new is a stretch. As you can see from the examples below, the new Twitter design looks an awful lot like some other social networks. The good news is, you can repurpose content – like your big, beautiful cover photos from your Facebook and ReverbNation profiles – on your freshly designed Twitter profile.

Some of the updates include:

  • A larger profile photo (max size 700k)
  • A large cover photo (max size 1500 px wide)
  • Best Tweets: Tweets with more engagement will appear larger
  • Pinned Tweet: You can now pin one of your tweets to the top of your page (Like Facebook’s ‘Pin-to-top’ Feature we covered in this post)
  • Filtered Tweets: You can choose which timeline to view when checking out other profiles. Select from these options: Tweets, Tweets with photos/videos, or Tweets and replies

You can read more of the details on Twitter’s blog, and check out a first-look at the new design from Mashable. Ultimately, the new design provides more opportunities for your fans to get a feel of you visually, possibly before they ever hear your music. Make sure you have great-looking high resolution photos or artwork on your pages to make a great first impression.

The new features, like best tweets and filtered tweets, can also be used to save you time when looking through your feed and engaging with fans. If you’re a DIY or Indie artist who handles all of your own social media and marketing efforts, be sure to check out these features to figure out how to make them work for you.

Another great way to use the pinned tweet feature, is to pin your most important tweets to the top of the page. It could be details about your latest album release, an upcoming show you’re playing or anything else you need your fans to know. That way you can continue to post real-time updates without worrying about your most important news getting lost in feeds.

Check out a few pages from musicians who have already gotten the update below.

Need more ideas for social media success? Make sure you sync your social media sites to your ReverbNation page. This will help you add fans, track your status and update your statuses with links to your music right from your ReverbNation profile. Click here to sync now.

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Weezer’s Twitter Page

 

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John Legend’s Twitter Page

SamNew Twitter Profile Update: Let’s Get Visual
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