Musicians often view the sound quality of their live shows as something left up to chance. Roll the dice, and you might get lucky and will be blessed with a skilled, patient sound engineer who will help you sound your best. But anger the gods, and you’ll have to suffer through a night of feedback squeals and unconfident playing due to mismatched sound levels. We all dream of the day when we’ll be able to afford to pay a personal sound engineer to run sound at our shows, but that’s a reality far out of reach for most musicians. Less-than-ideal sound conditions are unavoidable in live music performance, but there are things we can do to make things easier for the sound engineers we work with.
Nothing feels better in music when your work genuinely clicks with an audience. Many of us make music in the hopes that what we create will go on to help listeners feel understood in some way, and seeing that happen can be an incredible payoff. So incredible, in fact, that a song or album’s success can inform the creative decisions we make in the future. The frustrating thing is that copying the songwriting formula that made an old idea successful and pasting it into a new songwriting context probably won’t result in more great music, and can actually work against you in a big way.
Music production tips and tricks are being released on a daily basis. By doing a quick search on the web, you can find countless articles and videos that go over the latest and best mixing tips. While these tips may be helpful to you in the mixing process, they often just help you mask the fundamental errors that you have in your mix.
Below I have gathered five of the most important and fundamental mixing tips that you aren’t using to help you improve any mix that you are working on.
Like an interesting song, a music career requires a delicate balance of ideas. Not holding anything back when it comes to what you want to achieve through making music is essential, but not tapering expectations means opening yourself up for major disappointments over and over again. It’s a hard balance to strike, but maintaining a sky’s the limit outlook with an attitude that acknowledges the many harsh realities of being a serious musician in 2019 is something every music-maker needs to try to do.
Traditional venues are usually thought of as being the best place to host shows, but musicians miss big opportunities to share their music on their own terms when they rely only on venues to perform live. From intimate house shows to locally curated festivals, shows take on a whole new meaning when the performing musicians are the ones throwing them. Here’s three reasons why musicians should consider setting up their own shows:
One of the ways of building a strong live music presence is having successful ticket sales. While many artists start out playing in cafes or restaurants that already have an “in-house audience” presence, when we start playing in concert venues this is not the case. Concert venues typically do not have their own crowds who come to check out concerts. Rather, they make money by selling tickets to the crowd which the band brings. Consequently, the success of a show and the ticket sales almost entirely depend on how well the band or the artist promotes the concert. So, in this blog post I will provide some strategies to increase ticket sales based on my experiences as an independent artist.
When it comes to deciding what artists to work with on a PR campaign, there are a lot of factors that go into a publicist’s decision—contrary to popular belief a reputable PR agency will not just take the money of anyone who offers it to us and then blast out a press release and call it a day. True PR takes a lot of very purposeful, diligent work in building our relationships with press, strategizing the best methods and angles for each and every client’s needs and story, and creating a narrative that will entice and capture an audience of press, their readers, the band’s fans, and eventually, labels, festival promoters, and venue owners.
In 2019, there’s no shortage of ways to measure a musical artist’s success. Between public play counts and the growing private listener analytic data that streaming platforms now give to artists, musicians have ways to see how well their music performs in real-time. This unprecedented reality clearly brings artists some sizable benefits. For example, a small, unestablished band doesn’t have to fork over cash for an expensive radio campaign to learn what cities listen to their music the most because streaming platforms give away that information for free.
But there’s some significant drawbacks to consider in today’s data-driven, instantly gratified music culture. There are constant, unavoidable reminders of whether an artist is conventionally successful or if their music isn’t being heard. Drawing a connection to your self worth and whether your music is successful or not is a recipe for the sort of creative-killing frustration that can do serious damage to not only your career, but also your personal well-being.