Thursday, December 18, 2008

Can I be a DIY musician and become rich and famous?



The basic answer is yes you can. But the real question is how do you achive this.

What sells your music? You do. When it comes down to it, you as an artist are the best sales men/woman out there. You are the creators of the music which means you believe in your product or you would not have created it and released it in the first place. For this very reason you will either sell lots of product or very little depending on your passion and willingness to prove to the music buying public that your product is worth owning. Being a musician is not just something to do, or just a profession it is a business as well. For any business to be viable you must have a business plan.

This includes but is not limited to:

- Writing the music.
- Rehearsing for gigs and recording.
- Having your product made.
- Touring
- Selling your product.

There is much more but these are the very basic ideas that will help you move you forward.

Once you have recorded and released your music is where the real (hard) work begins, getting people to buy it. There are many ways and formulas to accomplish this task. Outlined here are just a few ideas. One of the most important ways is for you to surround yourself with people that believe in you, your music and willingness to help you.

Selling them solely on your own out of the back of your car or on your website will not guarantee the sale of lots of product. You are competing with Major Labels big budgets, Radio Stations, Music Magazines and e-zines. But most importantly with musicians who have already paid their dues and have made a name for themselves. What you as a musician may have not thought of is that you are competing with the best bands in your genre of music from not only your own backyard but from around the world.

Here are some examples:

- If you are a progressive rock band you might be competing against bands like, Porcupine Tree. The Flower Kings Ayreon and so on.
- If you are a metal band you might be competing against bands like, Metallica, Nightwish, Dream Theater and so on.

For this very reason you must place your product to sell in as many locations as possible from your local music retailer, online shop as well as digital distribution. Again this does not guarantee success. You as a DIY artists are not only the musician but your own record label, publicist and marketing dept. It is of up-most importance that your fan-base know where and how they can purchase your product.

This means constant promotion on your part. You cannot sell your product if the buying public does not know where to purchase your product. Just because your music is in a popular store or online in thousands of locations, this will not guarantee sales. These business’s need to sell product to survive, as hard as they try they cannot effectively promote every product they stock. So ask yourself this question? Why would anyone want to help me sell my music if I don’t help them by sending them potential customers. Remember the old saying: One hand washes the other.


Digital distribution is the least expensive way to release your product and is a good way to generate the funds for a physical release as well as get your music out to your fans. Yet we have noticed the trend that many labels and artists are moving in this direction and getting away from the traditional formats such as CDs and LPs.

Many may disagree but even with this technology you must still have a physical release. Why one might ask? Because the best way to sell music is while playing a gig that is why it is important to have it in a physical form like a CD, DVD, or LP. Many performers rely on these sales to pay for there movement (touring) from one gig to the next. Without the CD you are only t-shirt sales men, and if the design sucks or the t-shirts are over priced they won’t sell and help you pay for the tour and help promote you as an artist.

You cannot count on a person that came out to see you performance that they will run home after the show and download one or all your songs. Your fan base will consist of many types of people. Many who only download your music weather it is legal or illegal depends on the individual fan. That said, there are also those fans that have to own every thing they can get there hands on T-shirts, Posters, Bootlegs and yes even legitimate CDs
You are not only appealing only to the old die-hard fan that wants it in a hard copy like the CD. You will also have the opportunity to appeal to a new generation of fans of not only your music but this form of media.

We hope that this will help you become more successful as a musician however these are just the very basic

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