When I started my career as a musician/artist ( And a tech-geek; but that goes way back to my original career. ) I blundered into it with no set plan as such: My intention was to make great sounds and become established; eventually chart-bound.
I believed in myself. I knew that I had the talent, the ability, and a natural inbuilt streak of creativity that I’d been to some extent suppressing for years.
I’m getting on a bit: I’ll be 52 in November 2016, and back in my day – back when I was around 16 years old – artists were less common. A few of those existing artists of the time were selected, based upon talent and dedication alone, by the music industry to sign a contract with a major record-label and go on to produce millions of vinyl disks – which people played on their record-player turntables – and become very rich as a result.
I probably could have done that myself back then, and appeared alongside the likes of Spandau Ballet, Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark, Depeche’ Mode, Etc. But instead I was talked into pursuing a career in technology; with words like “Your brother can’t sing so how do you expect to sing.” – The logic was blazing hot with my folks, lol.
We’re going way off track here; so back to the present: I released track after track; singles, EPs, albums. – All of them for sale on iTunes, and CD Baby, and various other online stores. People loved a lot of them – when they could get them without spending any money.
(I suddenly realised that many of my so-called “friends” – online and offline – were freeloaders, who wouldn’t pay for something, even something created by a friend, even if they liked it. – Yet they didn’t mind paying for alcohol or tobacco.)
But also the general public weren’t hearing much of my music. Why was that? The answer is twofold: The first part of the answer is noise. Everyone else and their dog were releasing tracks left, right, and centre; and many of them were giving their music away free too*.
* Does that mean that I should have been giving my music away free also? To a large extent no it doesn’t. Where are most of the newbie-musicians from 2012 who were giving their music away free now? The answer is that most of them are no longer musicians, no matter how talented or otherwise they were. Many of them became disillusioned and moved on to another career. Others went broke.
The second part of the answer is lack of promotion: I was concentrating all my efforts and resources into creating tracks. – Tracks that nobody knew about because they weren’t advertised. Even some of the other newbies were advertising their tracks and advertising them fairly well through the right channels, but still were having problems getting properly “out there”. Without advertising I had no chance of decent popularity.
– So to cut a long story short I’ll be promoting my music in 2016. I’ll also be releasing; but I won’t be releasing as much as in some previous years.
Although the “everyone make music” fad is dying down somewhat of late; it’s still not easy to get heard as a fairly new and non-charting indie artist – particularly without advertising and promotion. What’s the point of releasing tracks that nobody hears?
Also there’s streaming too: Streaming allows pretty much anyone to hear my tracks without any financial outlay as such. – So now, whereas I was getting up to $1 US per track sale – I now get a fraction of a cent every time someone streams my track. Music sales to the general public just don’t pay much any longer as a result.
Media royalties still pay pretty much as much as they always did; but it seems that people don’t appear to be buying media-licences as much as before. – Maybe that’s just me being a bit pessimistic? I don’t know.
So in 2016 I’m doin’ it the right way: I’m advertising, I’m promoting, and then I’m releasing as a third-level priority. Since things move so fast these days you might think – owing to my past form of releasing almost every month – that I’m no longer doing music just because I haven’t released anything for a while. You’d be wrong to think that: I am my agent, my manager, my secretary, my Legal assistant, my producer, my sound engineer,webmaster, and everything else that I need apart from distribution, all rolled into me. I do it all myself. – So if all I do is release music there’s no time to do anything else.
I realise that I should stop being so stubbornly independent and find an agent/manager soon; but that’s for the future, not right now. Right now I’m taking the helm almost totally still. After I reach a certain stage I’ll have no choice but to get others on board. Until then I do the crew myself.
I think, I hope, I’m going about this in a manner that will end up beneficial to me and my career. – Time will tell.
On a separate matter; with regard to posting frequency on this blog: It has been a while since I last made a post. – You may notice that I haven’t created a post since before Christmas 2015, although I have written a couple or three pages.
In short there was nothing worth posting about, added to the fact that I was busy on other things. – Therefore I didn’t see the point of taking time out to post about nothing. Please read the About page. It says a lot more on the subject, and I see no point in repeating it all here.
Also while you’re at it; why not join the emailing list? I don’t bombard you with a ton of stuff. In fact I tend to only send email when it’s necessary. I won’t spam you, because I think it’s unethical to do so, I don’t have time to do so, and I want to retain my career.
Do have a great week.
- 'Simply one more edifying post. - Enjoy.