A cover song COULD help you connect with a wider audience. But sometimes cover songs aren’t worth the effort.
Sure, you’re putting your own personal stamp on a proven tune, which gives you a chance to invite listeners in with a something simultaneously familiar and fresh. However, open TikTok, YouTube, or Twitch and you’ll remember: we’re awash in cover songs. It’s hard for a cover song to stand out unless it checks a few different boxes that we’ll discuss below.
Here are a some things to think about before you commit to making a song cover:
Music might be one of the most important things in your life, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to pursue it in earnest easily. From fighting through seasons where inspiration seems impossible with having to balance non-musical priorities during your week, working on music consistently can feel impossible to do sometimes. But the truth is that your ability to make music creation, performance, and promotion a regular part of your life could be the single factor that determines whether you reach your goals or not. If you want to earn a living through music or simply create work that deeply resonates with a wide audience, you won’t get there without hard, consistent work. No matter what kind of music you make or what your goals are, you’ll thrive and grow much more as a musician if you can prioritize music in your weekly schedule. Here are three tips for helping you do just that:
Whether it’s a talkative roommate or the constant desire to be on your phone, distractions can be one of the most significant barriers standing between you and your full potential as a songwriter. If you’re serious about making the best music you can and sharing it with the world, you’re going to need to identify what distracts you the most when you write. Then comes the hard work of consciously removing distractions from your writing practice. While this gets easier the more we work at it, it’s a job we’re never finished doing. Distractions will always make writing music harder than it has to be unless we do the constant work of addressing and removing them.
It’s the dream of countless music-makers to spend their days writing music and earning a living. For many developing artists, songwriting seems like the opposite of working at a conventional job, and in some ways they’re correct. When you create music, you are your own boss and what you say goes. It’s a creative pursuit that allows you to express yourself exactly how you want to. Compare the experience of creating a new song to sitting in an office all day, and the two experiences couldn’t be any more different.
Songwriters don’t have it easy. We’re writing songs during the most competitive time in music industry history. If you’re a professional songwriter, income sources that used to be reliable, like licensing, have become much less so in recent years. And with today’s playlist-centric listening culture, it’s a feast or famine situation for many professional songwriters. But even if you’re not writing songs for your main source of income, there are plenty of challenges you will likely face as a songwriter. If you love making music and want to do it seriously for the rest of your life, it’s helpful to know why so many songwriters call it quits.
When you’re involved in two sides of the industry like I am–being both a publicist and a writer, sometimes it feels like all you’re ever reading is artist bios.
Trust me, I’ve seen it all, and a lot of those bios I’ve read are not pretty.
A bio is a major reflection of the band or artist it’s about. This may seem like a big duh, but you’d be surprised at how many bios out there are poorly written or make the band look bad because they are poorly written.
And honestly, I think the truth is most of us don’t realize how important a bio really is, and we don’t know what to look out for when it comes to writing them.
Take a look at some of these don’ts to get a head start on what not to do in your next bio revision.
Openness and curiosity are important positive traits for serious musicians to have. However, saying yes to every opportunity that comes your way is a bad idea. Whether you make music full-time for your job or during every spare moment you can, you have a limited amount of resources and time as a musician. Committing your time and attention to the wrong things in music means missing out on the things that will actually make a difference in your career. Here are five examples of things you should probably say no to in music: