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7 Things You Probably Don’t Want to Hear as a Musician

From Digital Music News:

…and four things you probably do. The following comes from Lee Parsons, founder of Ditto Music. Ditto is a UK- and US-based digital distribution service that counts over 50,000 artists worldwide.

It’s 2013 and the music industry is rapidly evolving. You can either keep up or get kicked out. Here are 11 ways to give you the best chance of success in 2013.

1. Major labels and radio are NOT against you.
Don’t get into the ‘us against them’ frame of mind that seems to have hit a peak in 2012. Labels still want to sign good music and radio deejays are desperate for great new sounds. View labels and traditional outlets as potential partners.

A big reason labels and radio pass on music is a lack of originality. Make sure your music is not only great but sounds original. Get some honest feedback by people outside of your circle and as hard as it can be, take notice of their criticism.

Understand the music industry in 2013 (and that it needs you).

2. Music may be getting worse, but that’s a good thing.
With Gangnam Style at worldwide number 1 and ‘X Factor’ controlling the media, you may have lost all faith in the 2012 music buying public.

Do you spend a lot of time telling people how bad current music is? Don’t waste your energy. Every major trend like ‘X Factor’ makes real music lovers even more inclined to seek out something good to listen to.
Recognize the music industry for what it is: a business. There has always been a throwaway product aimed solely at the teenage market. Ignore this. Keep your head down and concentrate on what makes you great.

3. Survive as a musician in 2013 (it takes more than playing an instrument).

If you still do not know what the PRS [or ASCAP and BMI] do, or insist that you are a musician and not a businessperson, that is not good enough in 2013.

The good news is that just a small bit of work will put you in the top 10 percent of musicians. Spend some time learning to use social media properly. Join some organizations (AIM [or A2IM in the US] is a great place to start) and start building solid relationships. Think of your music as a product and then decide how to market it to your audience. Keep your financials in order and properly plan your budgets.

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