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18,790 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
...and was signed to a major label the same year.

Most of you will hate this band, being that they're pop/rock, but every serious musician trying to make a go of it can learn something here. After only a year of DIY recording and promotion, they were signed to a major label. As any new band knows, if you've got decent songs and performance skill it's relatively easy to create a local buzz about a new band, but it's very difficult to expand on that buzz and turn it into something real. Here's one way that this band did it:

$10,000 In 48 Hours (Without A Label) | Music Industry Blog

And here's some more tips from the same band:

Studio Manifesto|DIY Tactics from Brian Mazzaferri
 

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Dream Crusher
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21,053 Posts
I love those guys. Great read too.
 

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Resident Rivethead.
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1,541 Posts
Very interesting indeed. The "Lifetime Membership" idea is brilliant.
:agreed:

The more you think about it, the more sense it makes too as a "startup" concept; 100 fans out of the thousands (if not more) that you stand to gain by word of mouth are now part of a single lot of people entitled to everything you do for free.

It's a hit of cash as they start up, it gets the band attention from everywhere (labels and fans alike), it gives them a minimum of 100 people who will always e listening to their music and spreading the word... just brilliant :yesway:

EDIT: Not to mention the fact that the band from that point on (before, technically) is known for the awesome stuff they're willing to do for their fans :metal:
 

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Prague Owlmighty
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1,770 Posts
That's absurd, but fantastic. It really all comes down to marketing, which is something I've been toying around with for awhile. If the music is good, and you can "sell" the band (or do it for free, whatever), this stuff works out. Now to make one of those cool little usb things....
 

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18,790 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
That's absurd, but fantastic. It really all comes down to marketing, which is something I've been toying around with for awhile. If the music is good, and you can "sell" the band (or do it for free, whatever), this stuff works out. Now to make one of those cool little usb things....
Yeah, as I said in the other thread about illegal downloading, creativity is what's thriving in the music industry these days, and following the old rules doesn't work any more, because it's boring and lazy.

If you can write great songs, but don't want to do the hard work to be a success as an artist, then be a songwriter, and sell those songs to others to record and perform. There's still great money in that, and your success doesn't die with the individual performers careers.

If you want to build a career around you or your band, you need to market yourself and sell yourself. People bitched about the record label taking too big of a cut of royalties, I say the record labels were taking fair compensation for doing all the work. Yeah, the labels would have nothing if you didn't write the songs and perform them, but hell, how often are the songs perfected in the studio by the (label hired) producer? How often are the performers coached by a (label hired) production manager? If you want a bigger cut, cut down on the number of people working for you. Fewer hands in the pot = more money in your pocket.
 

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Prague Owlmighty
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1,770 Posts
Yeah, as I said in the other thread about illegal downloading, creativity is what's thriving in the music industry these days, and following the old rules doesn't work any more, because it's boring and lazy.

If you can write great songs, but don't want to do the hard work to be a success as an artist, then be a songwriter, and sell those songs to others to record and perform. There's still great money in that, and your success doesn't die with the individual performers careers.

If you want to build a career around you or your band, you need to market yourself and sell yourself. People bitched about the record label taking too big of a cut of royalties, I say the record labels were taking fair compensation for doing all the work. Yeah, the labels would have nothing if you didn't write the songs and perform them, but hell, how often are the songs perfected in the studio by the (label hired) producer? How often are the performers coached by a (label hired) production manager? If you want a bigger cut, cut down on the number of people working for you. Fewer hands in the pot = more money in your pocket.
Indeed man. Well said.
 

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Dook dook dook
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2,434 Posts
This band owes a lot of success to their live performances too. Their music really isn't bad, it's well written and catchy, but where they shine is out in the public. I don't want to call them gimmicky but hell, they use NES controllers, a power pad, and a game boy, and several video game and pop culture references. For example, they play "Never gonna give you up" and also cover the Zelda theme. That's a quick way to grab attention, especially with vehicles like Youtube and MySpace. No doubt they used the power of current viral trends to promote themselves via an internet piggy back ride. But by no means are they trying to deceive their fans.

And hell, it worked. After watching a video of them performing the Zelda theme I looked up their non-pop-culture songs to see what they were ACTUALLY capable of, and was impressed.

Also, the idea of selling those membership cards to a select few at a steep price was a brilliant idea. Given the value of such a device (going by MP3 standards, once they write more than 100 songs, it's paid for), and what little impact it's going to have on their sales (100 isn't a whole lot, so they're not giving away much in relative to their popularity), they know exactly what they're doing.

Kudos for them on showing new ways to self promote. It reminds me of how Bulb markets himself and Periphery. He writes a ton of stuff, some of it incomplete, and offers it up free for download on his Soundclick. And in turn people will buy the album when it comes out, as well as t-shirts and other swag, as sort of a way of saying "thank you" for the effort he put into his fans. Hell, I'm not the biggest fan of Periphery, but I still bought the album to show respect for the work he's done to get to the point he's at now.

Yeah, I know... tl;dr :lol:
 

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Resident Rivethead.
Joined
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1,541 Posts
Yeah, as I said in the other thread about illegal downloading, creativity is what's thriving in the music industry these days, and following the old rules doesn't work any more, because it's boring and lazy.

If you can write great songs, but don't want to do the hard work to be a success as an artist, then be a songwriter, and sell those songs to others to record and perform. There's still great money in that, and your success doesn't die with the individual performers careers.

If you want to build a career around you or your band, you need to market yourself and sell yourself. People bitched about the record label taking too big of a cut of royalties, I say the record labels were taking fair compensation for doing all the work. Yeah, the labels would have nothing if you didn't write the songs and perform them, but hell, how often are the songs perfected in the studio by the (label hired) producer? How often are the performers coached by a (label hired) production manager? If you want a bigger cut, cut down on the number of people working for you. Fewer hands in the pot = more money in your pocket.
You must spread some reputation around before giving it to eleven59 again.
 

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Joined
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18,790 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
This band owes a lot of success to their live performances too. Their music really isn't bad, it's well written and catchy, but where they shine is out in the public. I don't want to call them gimmicky but hell, they use NES controllers, a power pad, and a game boy, and several video game and pop culture references. For example, they play "Never gonna give you up" and also cover the Zelda theme. That's a quick way to grab attention, especially with vehicles like Youtube and MySpace. No doubt they used the power of current viral trends to promote themselves via an internet piggy back ride. But by no means are they trying to deceive their fans.

And hell, it worked. After watching a video of them performing the Zelda theme I looked up their non-pop-culture songs to see what they were ACTUALLY capable of, and was impressed.

Also, the idea of selling those membership cards to a select few at a steep price was a brilliant idea. Given the value of such a device (going by MP3 standards, once they write more than 100 songs, it's paid for), and what little impact it's going to have on their sales (100 isn't a whole lot, so they're not giving away much in relative to their popularity), they know exactly what they're doing.

Kudos for them on showing new ways to self promote. It reminds me of how Bulb markets himself and Periphery. He writes a ton of stuff, some of it incomplete, and offers it up free for download on his Soundclick. And in turn people will buy the album when it comes out, as well as t-shirts and other swag, as sort of a way of saying "thank you" for the effort he put into his fans. Hell, I'm not the biggest fan of Periphery, but I still bought the album to show respect for the work he's done to get to the point he's at now.

Yeah, I know... tl;dr :lol:
:agreed: on all points. And, yeah, they've got a gimmick, sort of, but when you watch their video blogs and everything else, you see that they actually are a bunch of geeks who love video games, so it comes from an honest place, and if you took away all the gimmicks, the songs and performances would still stand on their own.
 

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Head of Agile Gestapo
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5,675 Posts
Wow, excellent read!
 
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