Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Discussion of anything not related to audio or music production
Sarrova-Q
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Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 1:18 pm

Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Sarrova-Q » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:07 pm

Time for a very honest message:
Me and a friend where searching for some great labels to let them hear our music.
(BPitch/Herzblutt/Ideal Audio/Systematic/... style)

Why do these labels keep telling you they want to hear your music ...
"Just post your best tracks in our Soundcloud Dropbox!"
After more than 3 months, you get 0 listens.
Try mailing them - nobody answers. (respect for Monkeytown Records - only label that replied)
Want to visit them? "Our address is an office, we don't accept demo's there - use the soundcloud dropbox".

So the situation is like this:
1. You only get noticed by big labels if you perform regularly and people start noticing you. (So a gig in a small club with 40 people doesn't count - no matter how great and good it was).
2. The only way to get these important gigs is if you where already signed by a big label or if your name is already famous. Otherwise bookers don't take the risk anymore.
3. You could try a very small label but what's in it for you? If no one checks out that label you will not get heard and you still won't get these important gigs (nobody knows that label).
4. ?!

It's really frustrating if you're just starting out.
Anybody got any advice to take it to the next level?
What is best for your musical career - remixing, start to do DJ sets, keep performing even though it's only in small clubs?
How do you get noticed? You can make the best music out there but if nobody hears your music it's pretty demotivating and useless.
I know a lot of great artists who make awesome music and don't get noticed and I know a lot more crap artists who make a lot of money with their stuff.
No disrespect for anyone btw, if you can survive in music industry I take my hat of ;)

beats me
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by beats me » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:36 pm

You need to play live and/or DJ and that's where it starts.

The days of getting big just by producing music in your bedroom are over.

Donnie
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Donnie » Sun Jan 15, 2012 7:48 pm

Try to get a little more viral on Soundcloud etc. Follow others, pass your tracks around, join groups and get others listening to your music. Sure performing is a big part of it, and even having small gigs means you are starting to get out there, but 'getting zero listens' is a completely different problem. In the end if people start to notice your music artists and labels will too.

beats me
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by beats me » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:05 pm

Also Rave on this forum has a service where he'll get your tracks on beatport for something insanely low like $40 per track. Might even get you on iTunes. I'm not sure what the extent of it is.

The days of labels are winding down too.

Muzik 4 Machines
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Muzik 4 Machines » Sun Jan 15, 2012 8:59 pm

beats me wrote:You need to play live and/or DJ and that's where it starts.

The days of getting big just by producing music in your bedroom are over.
were there even a time when producing music in a bedroom without playing out worked?
i cant seem to remember a time like that in 20 years of production and gigging

8O
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by 8O » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:25 pm

Muzik 4 Machines wrote:
beats me wrote:You need to play live and/or DJ and that's where it starts.

The days of getting big just by producing music in your bedroom are over.
were there even a time when producing music in a bedroom without playing out worked?
i cant seem to remember a time like that in 20 years of production and gigging
Depends on your definition of "worked" :wink: - enough to get tracks published, yes; enough to live on, rarely...
Last edited by 8O on Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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8O
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by 8O » Sun Jan 15, 2012 10:27 pm

Sarrova-Q - you definitely need a huge banner image and link to your music in your forum signature... that's the key to artistic, personal and sexual success...

(edit: and if you're submitting to those labels, I'd be interested in hearing your music, for one... can't help you with your career, just curious, like :wink: )
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stringtapper
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by stringtapper » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:13 pm

Sarrova-Q wrote:Anybody got any advice to take it to the next level?
Define what you mean by "the next level" in very specific terms.

Sarrova-Q wrote:You can make the best music out there but if nobody hears your music it's pretty demotivating and useless.
Is it? Sounds pretty dreary to me. The only thing that has ever motivated me to make music is the fact that I get to make music. Of course people make music for lots of different reasons and you have to figure out for yourself why you're doing it. There's no right or wrong reason to do it, but IMO it seems like a bad mental spot to be in if just the fact that no one is hearing your music drives you to consider the music itself "useless."
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Komodovaran
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Komodovaran » Sun Jan 15, 2012 11:24 pm

stringtapper wrote:
Sarrova-Q wrote:Anybody got any advice to take it to the next level?
Define what you mean by "the next level" in very specific terms."
You know, how to be the next Steve Angello, Tiësto, Guetta, Avicii, etc? Any tips on that? I've been meaning to try for some time but I haven't quite nailed that famous-with-the-famous-with-the-pros sound yet. Maybe I need to detune my sub bass more?

beats me
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by beats me » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:35 am

Muzik 4 Machines wrote:
beats me wrote:You need to play live and/or DJ and that's where it starts.

The days of getting big just by producing music in your bedroom are over.
were there even a time when producing music in a bedroom without playing out worked?
i cant seem to remember a time like that in 20 years of production and gigging
Back in the 2000-2001 time frame there was a period where I was making almost as much off music downloads and sales as I was as at my full time tech company job, a few months I made more. And that was done with bedroom music production with zero promotion other than chart ranking and word of mouth.

Unfortunately I sort of squandered that opportunity to build things, but I also experienced first hand what a creativity drain doing music for money becomes instead of just doing it for the love of it.

Sarrova-Q
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Sarrova-Q » Mon Jan 16, 2012 12:39 am

Komodovaran wrote: You know, how to be the next Steve Angello, Tiësto, Guetta, Avicii, etc? Any tips on that? I've been meaning to try for some time but I haven't quite nailed that famous-with-the-famous-with-the-pros sound yet. Maybe I need to detune my sub bass more?
That's pretty low, Komodovaran.
I know you meant it as a joke but there is really no point in making me look like a total idiot.
I know a lot about producing, I know a lot about the music industry and I make music for several bands.
I studied Master in Music at the Conservatory for 5 years and I've been making music for more then 15 years.
I do a lot for the ableton community and I think a little respect is on it's place.

I know a lot of people making some outstanding music struggling with the same problem.
But it seems they're scared of admitting it 'cause you know someone's gonna make them look like n00bs.
I guess that someone was you right know.

I know staying in your bedroom doesn't get you results and I'm not asking to be the next Guetta/whatever ...
All I was asking for is some tips to get some buzz going on, to get people to know you, to get more gigs and so on.
I'm sure I'm not the only one who needs to go to this period and I just wanted to learn useful stuff from people who already have some experience with this.
I'm not afraid to ask this, just because I'm totally committed to make it work.
And because I know what I make doesn't suck, hell I'm such a perfectionist I wouldn't dare to let someone hear my stuff before I knew it's good.
What's wrong with me asking for some advice to people I respect?
Well never mind, I'll forget what you posted and let's keep this topic friendly and happy :)

Thank you for all those who HAD useful tips! Really appreciated.

Oh and yeah of course I still enjoy making music, that will never ever stop!!!
I just meant demotivated in trying to promote this music, trying to get more people to hear what you made.
Music is my life, couldn't live without it.

Winterpark
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Winterpark » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:08 am

There seems to be a lot of this 'why not me?' label envy going on here at the moment.... maybe it has something to do the with new year?

but the reality is that as an independent artist in 2012, you are in an amazing position to take control of your own music, and to reap the rewards from it, if your music connects with enough people.

the thing that labels have going for them is a track record of promotion.... but if you believe your music is awesome, why not just hire a publicist who has a track record of doing publicity for artists in a similar genre to your own? There are plenty of people (usually ex-label promo people) who you can pay to do this for you.

It's best to have something substantial to publicise like an album release, tour and video, and have all the necessary promotional tools to go with it: art/photo/media releases etc... and a story that blogs/media can connect to.

Sure, you have to spend a bit of cash... but if you signed with a label, you'd be paying for it out of future royalties anyway...
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Muzik 4 Machines
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Muzik 4 Machines » Mon Jan 16, 2012 1:42 am

am wrote: but if you believe your music is awesome, why not just hire a publicist who has a track record of doing publicity for artists in a similar genre to your own? There are plenty of people (usually ex-label promo people) who you can pay to do this for you.
cause it's fucking expensive, to get that kind of service i would need to sell all my hardware and even then, it might not be enough(there is probably 20K$ in it)(and then music would be over as i wouldnt have anything to gig with

thatS' why it's nice to be signed, they take care of hte shitty part of the business hile you make the music without worrying about how to pay the rent next month or what you will eat tomorrow

Winterpark
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by Winterpark » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:23 am

it doesn't need to be 20k expensive... if you have a budget of only a couple of grand you can get people to do targeted promotions. ie: only service to radio or blogs.

it's one of those things... you spend money to make money.

it may not come back to you through sales these days, but there are other opportunities that arise... maybe someone will consider you good to be a support act, or you may get on a festival, or you may have a track end up on the desk of a tv production house, or maybe some A&R person will actually take notice of you next time you put a track in their soundcloud drop box.

All I'm saying is that you don't need a label and that you don't need to spend huge amounts of money to promote yourself... if you are aware of where your audience is and how you can reach them.
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beats me
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Re: Labels and SoundCloud Dropbox ... FAIL

Post by beats me » Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:27 am

I think the following paints a pretty good picture of where the music business is right now.

I saw an ad for a local studio that strictly does pop and dance music with nominal success having their tracks placed in vapid MTV reality shows and the likes looking for an intern. I'm well past my prime to be a studio intern, but I don't need the money anyway, have the free time after work, and I know my way around a studio, administrative work, and I don't mind dumping a trash can or 12. What I'd get out of it is being around music types which is the furthest thing from what I'm around at my job.

What they did offer in return is music production lessons. I have absolutely no problem with commercial pop or dance and even though that's not the kind of music I produce I think I would still be a better producer for learning from people who have had some success with it. Some techniques are just universal.

But after reading the ad I realized my skills and interest were secondary or almost unnecessary. What they really wanted was for somebody to promote the shit out of their production company. They even asked for links to any social network you are on. I killed my facebook account a couple weeks ago so that's how much of a square peg I am on this one.

Basically it was "Hand over your popularity for us to leverage and we'll show you how to make a beat." The first part of that sentence is pretty much the basis for all music business now.

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