I’ve got some news for you that might be hard to believe if you’re a musician hard at work in 2019. CDs are not a thing of the past. Far from it, actually. Believe it or not, there’s a couple of occasions in music where downloads and sending out links to stream your music simply won’t suffice. Technology has massively transformed the way the music industry operates, but there are a few things that have managed to weather the changes so far, and CDs is one of them. Here are three instances where you’ll need to duplicate CDs in your music career:
DIY or professional radio campaign
If you’ve got an album coming out that you want to promote with a professional or DIY radio campaign, you’re going to need CD versions of your music to get the job done right. Sure, you can search through the music submission formats of each and every radio station you’re planning on pitching, but this will largely be a waste of time because most serious stations only accept CDs. Will this change in a world growing more and more accustomed to the convenience of streaming? Maybe, but we’re not there yet. This might be frustrating if you’re an artist used to the convenience of posting your music online the minute it’s mastered, but legitimate radio campaigns still require CDs.
PR for your next album, EP, or single
This same concept goes for PR campaigns DIY or otherwise. Folks in the music industry who run blogs, write columns, and curate playlists are inundated with an endless supply of new music begging to be reviewed and featured. Duplicating CDs is a way to reflect a certain level of seriousness on behalf of an artist, and they’ll present your songs in a pristine, easy-to-listen to format. Putting yourself in the shoes of the people you share your music with will greatly increase your chances of finding success, and sending CDs show that you mean business about your music.
Represent your music in the best possible sound to fans and music industry influencers
If you haven’t been making music for a very long time, do yourself a favor and play your record through a streaming format and then on CD. The difference in quality will astound you. Most audiences have grown accustomed to listening to music that’s been squashed down into convenient streaming files, but music industry influencers and hardcore music-lovers haven’t. If you want to present your work in the best way possible from an audio perspective, CDs are still the best way to do it. In 2019, you’re not likely to sell loads of CDs, but not offering them means missing a big opportunity to give something valuable to fans, radio stations, and press outlets.
CD duplication might just sound like another cost swimming in a sea of other expenses surrounding an album release, but it’s something you should plan for if you want to be taken seriously by picky fans, radio stations, and press outlets in 2019.
Patrick McGuire is a writer, musician, and human man. He lives nowhere in particular, creates music under the name Straight White Teeth, and has a great affinity for dogs and putting his hands in his pockets.