Here is probably the most important music industry tip you will ever receive:
Join up and subscribe to every indie music industry and DIY band promotion email list, newsletter and resource that you can get your hands on and read everything that you receive.
I mean it when I say that too much information is much better than not enough, if what you have joined up or subscribed to is not giving you the information that you need then you can just opt out and un-subscribe.
Most sites that offer these things have the integrity to do as you ask.
Read what you receive, make notes, ask yourself if it is relevant for you and the place you are living in, integrate the information into your knowledge base.
The only way to gain this knowledge is by research, and the internet is the best place to research anything.
I mean, the word Google is now a verb…
Researching on the internet though will only give you general (but nonetheless very important) indie music industry knowledge. The real power comes from knowing your local scene and becoming active in it.
Here are some ways that you can do this:
- Start reading the music magazines in your area.
Local street press is an invaluable tool in letting you know what is going on in the local industry. Generally these magazines have features/interviews with local bands, a gig guide (great for targeting where to play), industry news and so on.
- Go and see some local bands.
Check out your competition (I mean that as a figure of speech the most important thing about a healthy indie music industry is the community that builds from the music and the people who play it), introduce yourself, get out there amongst it all and immerse yourself in the vibe.
Get familiar with the places these bands play at and know who to talk to when it’s your turn to play there.
- If there are music associations where you live, join them.
Anything that supports indie music on an association level seek it out and join up. If it costs money to do that then do it (generally its not an expensive exercise). Joining these types of associations instantly gives you a sense of community and solidarity. Also the amount of information you will gain about your local area will be huge.
- If these local organisations have websites then bookmark them.
Need I say more on this topic. Most websites for offline organisations offer more to online users of their services. It really pays to be an active online user.
One advantage that comes to mind is the fact that you are able to participate in forums and message-boards which, in time will become powerful DIY marketing tools for you.
You got to start somewhere and the best place to start is with your own local area. As you expand your knowledge base you will work out ways to further your career and hopefully a snowball effect will start.
And once that momentum starts… HANG ON!
Do you know of any other ways to immerse yourself into your local music scene? Let me know and we can walk this journey together.
Until next time, just go for it,
All About Music Business