Tips About How to Get a Record Deal

If you are an aspiring pop star, singer or musician you may want to get a record deal to get your name known and turned into a household name. This can prove to be a difficult task for many especially if you are from a small town. Your chances of winning a record deal by entering a contest are slim and nobody records a demo and sends it to various record labels expecting to hear back positive word within a week. Times have changed and the atmosphere for getting a record deal has changed as well.

The world of music and showmanship now involves a lot of digital creations with social networking and instant communication highly sought after as an artist you have the ability to reach your desired target in just a couple minutes using any of these tools or the most popular YouTube. At the moment this seems like the ideal thing to do and you may have even done it already but the truth is after positing your music on YouTube you are still a far cry from getting that record deal that you so desire. There are a couple of things you need to know about getting a record deal.

  1. Getting a record deal is not just about getting exposure, you can find exposure with Facebook likes and Twitter followers or YouTube video comments but these people that you are exposing yourself to are not the ones who can get you the record label deal so why even bother to invest too much time in that. Well you want to still keep up your social following you may say. There is nothing wrong with that just remember that getting the record deal is your ultimate goal.
  2. The people offering the record deals have not changed their methods. They aren’t looking for you on YouTube and Facebook but instead are attending live performances to find that new thing “golden ticket”.

But how do you get A&R executives to see that you have a lot of promise and are worth being taken under their wings. How do you get into these performance shows that they attend so that they can actually see what you are made of? The answer is simple you need to be persevering. You want to impress upon these executives that you don’t stop at the first sign of a glitch and that you have the desire to make it big in the industry.

You will need to show that you are not willing to back down until you have had your voice heard. Start doing live performances and get merchandise made to advertise yourself. Finance your albums and have them for sale even if it is just from your car. Ensure that you take copies with you to performances so that you can sell them afterwards as well. Do everything within your power to get people to be interested with you. Doing this long enough will allow you to get the recognition you need to get that record deal.

Landing Music Industry Jobs or a Record Deal in the Digital Age

The Music Industry as everyone knew it slightly over a decade ago has undergone a revolution. The core middleman in the music industry that we came to know from the 50s to the mid-90s was always the record company aka the record label. During that time period, the label had access to the platforms of sales and distribution, and perhaps more importantly the label had virtual monopolistic access to marketing and the means for discovering new talent. Amazingly, this was hardly the limit of the record company’s control.

From the perspective of the many who dreamed of landing music industry jobs, the road leads through the many areas of influence or outright ownership of the big record company. The acts themselves relied on the label to take their talent and turn it into money. The record deal was the coveted result for securing monetary return for the artist’s work. It seemed to all, that labels were the only ones who knew the path.

Fast forward to the music industry of today and with it the emergence of the internet as a platform for sharing and distributing musical content digitally. Now the artists can go directly to the people in minutes without the help of middlemen. This has lessened the value of the record deal and records in general. The value now is more centered in the personage and original unique content of the musician. This is because the content of the records themselves are shared widely on a free platform (the internet).

This has served to decrease the value of the traditional record, tape or cd. While this technology trend has actually empowered musicians who choose to capitalize on it, it has greatly muddied the waters for people who are searching for a traditional music industry job. With labels generally contracting trying to figure out their most profitable place in the post-internet world, vertical integration and traditional jobs have become scarcer.

With all that said, the formula for making it in the music industry still comes down to the basics of attacking passionately and following through with dogged determination. The same fundamentals apply for either more conventional employment or in the form of someone paying you for your artistic work. When asked once what the secret to life was, legendary rock musician Bruce Springsteen was said to have commented: “find what really makes you happy and stick with it.” This concept is actually the basis for success in the music industry. Remember that the music industry itself is based on the difficult to quantify tastes of individuals. These tastes are ever-shifting. Even in the glory days of stability, the record-label dominated industry was constantly in flux. Today it is much more chaotic.

So knowing that, when looking for a music industry position, you first want to clearly understand what you are really passionate about. Then when you choose that aspect of the music industry, use the internet to understand the trends and future outlook. The most important question you will want to answer about your passion is: where is the greatest area of need and where can I focus my efforts to give the greatest value within my area of interest? Then you must be very willing to do whatever it takes, including working for no compensation to prove your worth to break in with music industry jobs. The rewards of being able to spend your days doing something you love will be well worth the sacrifices at the beginning. A cool secret about initial sacrifice is that it doesn’t feel like sacrifice because you are knee deep pursuing what you love.

Now if you are a musician and you want to get a record deal, the idea of pursuing your dream is probably already deeply ingrained. You are hopefully very experienced in having people critique your work positively and negatively. Even with the new technologies emerging, getting a record deal is still a very relevant goal. The relationship that you should want to create with a label within the music industry is collaborative. Don’t fall into the trap of being the servant or begging for the existence of the relationship thinking it will answer all your financial problems.

Today’s musician must be knowledgeable about how to control his entire production and distribution as if the record labels don’t even exist. This knowledge building process will invariably create a deep understanding of the business side of the industry. The use of digital technology and online distribution will also allow the musician to create his own buzz and identity. This is power for you as an artist in the process of growing a brand and eventually partnering (not serving) with a record label in a business relationship.

How to Find Jobs in the Music Industry

Many people have often wanted to know how to find jobs in the music industry. There is no simple answer, and unlike with most career paths, there are no set rules or standard path to follow. Many people have found themselves in the industry by simply being in the right place at the right time. Something as simple as knowing someone in the industry has opened doors. Others have had to work odd jobs for years before they managed to get a foot into the door. Having said that, it is important for anyone aspiring to join the music industry to persevere and not get discouraged in spite of the great odds. Just because it is not easy done not mean it is impossible, and anyone who believes they can make it, will do so in the end.

The first thing the aspirant needs to do is to decide the kind of job he would like to do. The music industry is broad and there are many jobs for music. Landing a job in the music industry begins by realizing that there are different paths that can be taken to get to the dream job. There are steps one can take to increase his/her odds of getting the job and learning about the music industry is essential. When most people think about the music industry, they think of musicians. While they may be the most important part, musicians do not make up the entire music industry. There are thousands of people who work behind the scenes to ensure that the industry is successful. It is important to know what all the ‘behind the scenes’ jobs are.

While a few years ago there were few labels that handled almost all the music that was produced, today the record labels can be found on virtually every street. While some are more established than others, joining one can be an important learning experience.

Another way to make contacts and learn more about the music industry is by being an intern. This is a great way to meet and learn from those already established in the industry.