It can be exciting to read reviews of your music when they portray your music in a positive light. But, unfortunately, make music and share it with the world long enough, and it’s almost inevitable that some negative feedback about your work will get published and sent your way. The truth is that music criticism can help you as a music-maker whether the reviews covering your music are flattering or difficult to read. It all depends on your perspective and goals.
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.
While it’s clear that the pandemic isn’t going to have a defined endpoint, musicians of every genre and background are beginning to get back on stages around the world again, and audiences couldn’t be happier. As you make your way back to the world of live shows, you might be surprised to discover that you feel oddly nervous about performing again. Some reading this might be musicians with years of performance experience, but the truth is that more than a year of sitting out live shows is a long time to be away from the stage even if you’re a seasoned pro. Combine that with anxiety you might have about being indoors with crowds of people again, and you’ve got a recipe for performance-related nerves. Here are a few tips to help fight stage fright before your post-lockdown shows:
More artists than ever before are finding huge audiences for their music with songs that were recorded from their home studios. Long gone are the days when creating and sharing great music meant having to record at a fancy music studio manned by professional recording engineers. But don’t be fooled. Home recording isn’t easy, and you shouldn’t confuse knowing how to write songs with the ability to record and produce music. Home recording is a skill just like anything else, and it takes time and practice to get better at it. If you’re new to recording from your home studio, here are five tips to help you get started:
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.
Even the most talented songwriters can’t create their best music without putting in the work. If you want to make the best music you can, you’ll need to show up to the creation process over and over again throughout your life, not just when you feel inspired to. Living a musical life happens week by week, and there’s a lot you can do each day to create the best work you can as often as possible. Adopting these weekly habits will help dramatically improve your life as a serious songwriter:
Every time I talk about online social media groups, I feel like I’m revealing this golden secret to the person I’m talking to. I mean sure, we all know what online groups are, and odds are most of us are in way more than we need to be (I don’t know about you, but my feed is practically overrun with groups that I don’t even want to be a part of anymore but also never seem to unsubscribe from) and yet, they are this beautiful untapped goldmine of opportunities and connections.
If you’re new to joining online groups, let this be your guide into why they can be one of the most useful ways to spend your time, build your network, and grow your music career.
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: