It used to be that the only way to make it in music was to score a deal with a record label and turn out hits for a few years until you had enough name recognition to stand on your own. That is no longer the case. Record labels still serve a valuable purpose, but you can completely bypass the established system and go at it as an indie artist. You will have to put in a lot more work, though.
There are two main benefits to going the old route: funding and marketing strength. The funding aspect should be pretty simple to understand. A record label has the money to record you upfront. It has the money to put into promoting you and your music. Choose to go indie and you will have to come up with all the money yourself.
In terms of marketing strength, record labels know how to get it done. They have connections that could mean the difference between a ton of positive promotion and no promotion at all. If you choose to go it alone, your marketing will mostly be done online. That’s fine, but there’s a lot to know about online music sales.
- Selling, Distribution, and Licensing
Right off the bat, you need to know the differences between your three main options. Your first option is selling. You record your music, upload it to a website, and allow people to buy copies of it from there. It is pretty simple.
Your second option is distribution. With a distribution model, you might upload music to only one website. From there, it gets distributed to dozens of others. Distribution widens your reach considerably.
Last but not least is licensing. Under this scenario, you sell licenses to other entities who want to use your music for their own projects. You could license a song to the creators of a TV show. You could license another one to a publishing group. Licensing gives someone else the legal right to use your music for commercial purposes. You retain ownership.
- There Are Fees Involved
Understand that selling music online involves fees of some sort. Some online music websites charge artists an annual membership fee and nothing else. Others charge a membership fee and a percentage of the artist’s sales. Still others offer a list of services, like publishing and distribution for example, then charge of flat fee for each one.
It is important to understand all the fees before signing up with an online music website. If you’d like a list of recommended sites to start looking at, New York’s Supreme Tracks listed a bunch in a recent blog post. They talk about the fees for each one.
- Quality Matters two Fans
One thing you should not do as an indie artist is compromise on quality. The quality of your music matters to your fans. Remember this when you are deciding how you’re going to produce your music.
Supreme Tracks works with customers through an online recording model. They can do as little or as much as you need, including recording drum parts, recording orchestral music, and even handling arrangements. You essentially make music online by collaborating with artists, producers, and technicians located all over the country.
You can also set up your own recording studio at home. Do all recording yourself and then pay an engineer to handle post production.
Also read: Benjamin Aguero – Son of Argentinian soccer superstar Sergio Aguero and his former wife Gianinna Maradona.
It is possible to sell your own music as an indie artist. There is a lot more work involved, as compared to getting hooked up with a record label, but a lot of indie artists are doing it these days.