how do you break into the music industry?


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07-10-2005, 09:52 PM
how do you break into the music industry? i do all the bands get into... i have been thinking about what i really want to do with my life and i want to get in the music industry..i dont care about the money..i want to play music for people... i it just gigs all the time until someone finds you ?i mean i'm only i have time..but i'm so interested in it.. if you have any info let me know.. its what i want to do..

please guys..


--- Lake

07-10-2005, 09:55 PM
u do gigs, do a demo, n hope ur lucky

07-10-2005, 09:56 PM
I think that there are columns on this...alot of good web sites too....try google

07-10-2005, 09:58 PM
Yea...lucks alot of it....alot of great bands that never get big..just gotta hav the rite sound at the rite time

07-10-2005, 09:59 PM
get a band, write good songs, get good at your instruments, have a good sound, give people something cool, write some catchy riffs, chorus's, ect, Do gigs, make a demo, and send to record companys, and give them out to people for free.

07-10-2005, 10:00 PM
be as original as possible or be totally cliched (fad)

07-10-2005, 10:02 PM
I used a hammer, crowbar, and shaving cream to cover the cameras.

07-10-2005, 10:02 PM
Originally posted by AllPlayDead666
get a band, write good songs, get good at your instruments, have a good sound, give people something cool, write some catchy riffs, chorus's, ect, Do gigs, make a demo, and send to record companys, and give them out to people for free.

good charlotte didnt do half of those, but they made it big. luck is huge. good luck man:peace:

07-10-2005, 10:04 PM
All U need is skill luck and make people notice u by like playing on the roof of your local high school

07-10-2005, 10:05 PM
the key is skill and getting noticed

07-10-2005, 10:14 PM
thanks everyone.. the whole music deal is just so .. i dunno its weird..i want it so bad..i'm in a real small town so i'm not real sure how you would get noticed way out here in the middle of nowhere....luck must have to do alot with it... i need some luck! anymore...

07-10-2005, 10:17 PM
gtrbabe, how old are you, seriously?

Most of these jackasses haven't ever had a record deal, and are pretty much clueless about the entire process.

07-10-2005, 10:19 PM
well, get really really good, make a demo and send it to as much record companys as you can...and if that doesnt work...theres tons of other stuff you could do...bribe them...blackmail...etc.

07-10-2005, 10:19 PM
i really am 14. ha...why?

07-10-2005, 10:26 PM
do the big music businesses really listen to your demos?? or do they just ship them back and say they have listened to it? it seems so difficult.. bands that have made it big time are so lucky..i am determined this is what i'm going to do though..i'll do anything to make it there..

07-10-2005, 10:30 PM
if you really KNOW thats what you want to do with your life, then deticate as much time as you can on getting better...screw homework...screw friends...hhaha jk....but seriously just practice and someone will find you sooner or later

07-10-2005, 10:31 PM
and no they rarely listen to even say you need a recommendation from some agent to send them a demo...those bastards

07-10-2005, 10:32 PM
Originally posted by Corwinoid
I used a hammer, crowbar, and shaving cream to cover the cameras.
:haha :haha :haha

he is right in his other post you know, most of these people have no clue what they are talking about. i dont either, but im going to suggest that you start small and try to attract the attention of a small label that has bands with a similar style to yours. they are more likely to take interest than a large label that is only out for the biggest and best bands.

07-10-2005, 10:36 PM
Oh, I didn't see that in your first post ;)

Seriously, get a band together, get some music together as a group. Sit down, get a set list together, then have everybody go learn their part for each song, on their own--this'll save you time and frustration when you start practicing as a group. When you do practice as a group, work on your performance, your cohesiveness as a group, your ability to work together on a stage, the things that as a band you can't work on individually.

Expect that to take about a year, before you guys even start getting music together as a group, to the point where it's at a performance standard (less, if you're all exceptionally experienced... but really, it usually takes a group about that long to work out all the kinks, and get their crap together as a whole).

Get a demo pack together, a recording of two or three originals, and a cover or two you might play in a given set, and start PLANNING gigs. Don't just send demos out and 'hope somebody says you can play.' Send them out with the intent that YOU want to play THAT venue on THAT specific night, or as close to that night as possible.

Why? So that two (or more) venues don't call you back and say "Yeah, we got a slot on the 17th, can you be there?" Show halls hate having a group say no, to anything--so you send them a demo, and give them a calander slot you'll be in the area, and ask if you fit.

We like to call that tour planning, or scheduling... that doesn't necessarily mean you're touring a huge area, but during the months you're available to gig, you want to have your locations planned for the easiest manner for you to get to them consecutively (very local, this isn't so important, but when you start having someone drive you around the state for shows, and you're doing shows 2 or 3 nights in a row, it gets more and more important).

This all takes effort on your part, you've gotta find out what kind of venues you want to play at, which venues will take you regardless of age, that kind of thing. Finding a way to get an entire group of people to the show (and trust me, you want to go AS a group; or someone will invariable not be there).

Once you start gigging like this, you want to start building up a fan base. This happens one person at a time, to start out. Eventually it snowballs, but the process is slow as hell in the beginning. Your music is only half of this, the other half is when you're not on stage. Hanging out with people before the show, hanging out AFTER, entertaining people while you're not performing (bands have awesome parties, everyone knows that, so your band throws an aftershow party, people show up--you start building fans). It's things that you do off stage with the people at your shows, and not at your shows, that make them want to buy your music (or other merch), and make them want to come see your band again.

It's people wanting to see your band that gets you into larger venues, with a greater backing. It's getting into larger venues, with a greater backing, that gets you around the people you want to be around.

Getting a record deal really isn't that hard, but it's only half what you do on stage. You'll spend time talking to people from labels, talent managers, promoters, venue managers, _other bands_. Other bands have been around longer, they already have a following, and already know people. If they like your stuff, ask if you can tour with them sometime, and do your best to set it up. A lot of venues like it when a pair (or more) of bands comes along who want to perform together, it saves them a whole lot of trouble in the end. Other bands will also introduce you to the people you want to meet, so that you can entertain those people.

Getting 'noticed' is about meeting people, and keeping them interested in you, and what you have to offer. What you have to offer is usually the smallest part of that equasion.

Along the way, with all the gigs you're doing, and your part time job back home helping you pay your half of the bills, you'll manage to make enough money to live off of.

07-11-2005, 12:23 AM
Originally posted by gtrbabe5968
do the big music businesses really listen to your demos?? or do they just ship them back and say they have listened to it? it seems so difficult.. bands that have made it big time are so lucky..i am determined this is what i'm going to do though..i'll do anything to make it there..

yeah i know the feeling im 14 too i just hope to be musically connected with my career weather being in a band a teacher or whatever and make a living off of it

07-11-2005, 12:28 AM
hey guys, thanks for the help.. the only problem is like.. going places.... i still dont have my license only 14... but like.. i am kinda in a band.. like.. 5 ppl frum our church jam all the ..and we play at church and a few churches want us to play for them.. we're actually pretty good.. i mean we dont play any of our own stuff or anything... but we play anything form praise music to switchfoot to falling up -- so we're christian rock.. and i really wanna play christian music cause i love to glorify but i also want to play my own music.. ya know?i play rhythm guitar and our lead guitarist is awesome and we have a chick singer that can sing like awesomely-shes great- she can make it to teh big league,
but i mean.. how did switchfoot become so0o great? i mean.. you cant really go into a bar or go into a nightclub and play christian rock music... they would like throw stuff at you and make you feel like crap even if you are good... its just because who you are playing for. anyways-- i mean .. ya'lls advice has been great.. and im gonna use it.. i just dont know where to start off playing christian music... like.. would be churches or praise fests or... what do you think?.. and playing music ..i want it to be my career or atleast make it somewhere playing music or writign or something.. i have teh dedication part down, music and guitar and poetry and thoughts and stuff like that is my life and i wouldnt have it any other way.. its what i wanna do..its who i wanna be... but ... it would be great to see me, as a 14 year old, playing on a big stage with a huge audience who likes you, but i guess the best thing would be to get with band and play as much as possible.. make some originals that are worth hearing and reading and start off from there..i guess it just takes much time.. thank you everyone....

am i right on all this above^..about where to go ?? let me know..

thanks so much everyone-help me out if you can in any other ways..


07-11-2005, 01:11 AM
It's no easy process, to say the least.

You don't quite "break into" the music industry. You have to have experience, talent, and know-how. You gotta know your ****, inside and out... "tuned-in," so to speak, with the whole industry. You gotta have an outlook and your own style... few tribute/cover bands ever make it big. Actually, even they don't quite make it big because they all for the most part stay underground.

All musicians in the band need to be on the same page. They all need to be capable of playing what they have to play.

I don't know how else to explain it. I'm not in the business at all, but I know this is what it takes to get there. I find it hard to believe that someone would ask such a question, but hey whatever.


07-11-2005, 01:55 AM
How to make it in the music industry....

Well, there's no real set formula for how to do it, but it has a lot to do with meeting the right people (so like Corowind said, always talk to and interact with your fans and other bands as often as possible), being in the right place at the right time (helps you meet the right people) and giving your fans something to remember. Something that makes people want to come see you again and bring their friends. This can be anything from throwing a crazy after party to just putting on a show so incredibly awesome that they just have to see you again. But it's not only your music that has to be good. You gotta have stage presence. Your show has to be something special, not just a bunch of guys on stage playing music. If you do something special (e.g. Chili Peppers playing nude, Slipknot masks, Any band that has guitarists who solo behind their head) then people will notice and talk about you.

Anyways, I hope that helps a little, and im really not quite sure how Switchfoot made it at all....But it probably had something to do with meeting the right people at the right time.

07-11-2005, 02:05 AM
Originally posted by gtrbabe5968
do the big music businesses really listen to your demos?? or do they just ship them back and say they have listened to it? it seems so difficult.. bands that have made it big time are so lucky..i am determined this is what i'm going to do though..i'll do anything to make it there..

They don't listen to them, they don't open them. They don't ship them back.

It's a legal matter, if you send in a demo, and a year later another band comes out with an incredibly similar song, you can sue the label.

With the amount of mainstream music that gets written, and the nature of pop music, this isn't really that far fetched--and it doesn't involve theft. It just happens.

So no, record companies and other major music businesses will not listen to any media you send them that's unsolicited.

Like I said, it's important to MEET people, and have those people become interested in you.

07-11-2005, 12:34 PM
yeah.... i get what everyone is saying.. i guess i just gotta keep at it.. and yea, JK82 i kno wut u mean,but i dont want to be a band teacher.. but i want to be musically connected with career.. thanks everyone... anything else i need to know?

E Daws
07-11-2005, 02:21 PM
Well if you enjoy playing at church, try to get them to let you play at the main service and not just at the youth groups. The reason I say this is because at least at my church, there are a number of adults who once tried to to have or currently have a musical career. They might like you and talk to you afterwards and give some advice or even contacts.

07-11-2005, 02:27 PM
Corwinoid for the big post: :golfclap: I may have to bookmark this thread and pretty much learn that post, could be helpful!

07-11-2005, 02:36 PM
thanks E Daws, i mean.. i go to a baptist church, so its kinda strict ya know.. i mean .. me and teh band play sometimes on sunday nights and they love us and they want us to play alot on sunday nights.. but i dont know if they want us to play on sunday mornings... so.. i'll have to check into that... thanks..

07-11-2005, 02:56 PM
Corwinoid had the best listen to everything he said

07-11-2005, 07:48 PM
you guys have been great. and thanks Corwinoid, you broke it down alot... thanks for all the advice.. if you guys come up with anything else or any more info..let me know

07-11-2005, 08:51 PM
Well, you're 14. You might think differently about the rock and roll life after exposure to drugs, hard licor and loose women. If you're still standing, with a guitar strapped low, then maybe you've got a fighting chance.

07-11-2005, 11:45 PM
im not wanting to play rock n roll...i dont drink and i drugs arent exactly my thing.. i'm dedicated . so i mean.. i think dedication can get where i want to be..if i have teh talent for it.

07-12-2005, 05:14 AM
ask someone who has. to be honest, i dont think many of the people in this forum have broken into the music industry themselves yet.

07-12-2005, 01:38 PM
Originally posted by Mr_Hyde
ask someone who has. to be honest, i dont think many of the people in this forum have broken into the music industry themselves yet.

this is true...but eh, wheree would you find someone who you know where you can find a famous person who broke through to tell you

07-12-2005, 06:29 PM
Well, we got corwinoid, who broke into the scene with spandex, half a ton of hair gell, and a bright green flying V guitar back in the dark days of the early 80s. (at least, thats how i imagine him.)
...I'm now waiting to be sued for libel.

07-12-2005, 06:47 PM
^ Actually it was black leather short shorts, fishnet stockings, and purple lipstick.

Though the crowbar and shaving cream really did help.

07-13-2005, 07:16 AM
its hard and lots of luck is involved

07-13-2005, 07:21 AM
Actually it's very little luck; it's experience and perseverance. Bands decide "This is what we want. We're going to make it happen." And they do the work to make it happen.

You don't sit around going "God I hope that some bigwig exec out there is at our next show and 'finds us' so we can record a demo for them."

No, you go out there, you get bigger and better gigs, you put on bigger and better shows, you get your **** together, you work the fans, you work the industry, you find an agent who will work it all with you; and when you've worked it enough, you get off your knees.

It's not luck, period.

07-13-2005, 05:47 PM
Much like Corwinoid said, get a band together, and get a fan base.

You have to play good music. Really, really good music. Not "my friends think I play well," but "my band is good, I've had newspaper articles written about me" even if they're from small, local papers, or even if the article is small, so long as it's genuine praise, clip it out of the newspaper, and KEEP IT.

Once you play good music, make sure you have an exceptional stage act. If you're a bunch of zombies, no one will want to go to your concerts, and you will not get signed, because it will lose the record company money.

So, find yourself a promoter, and get a lot of stage experience, develop a fan base. Promoters are the most wonderful people in the world - especially if you befriend them. They can easily make or break a band, by getting or not getting you gigs. Of course, the better your band is, the easier it is to get a show. Also, talk to college radio stations, try to get them to play some of your music, they do that fairly often, and it's a good way to get your music out there. You can also try to get some of the more major radio stations to play your music, but don't hold your breath for those.

Once you've gotten a promoter, and you've got some experience, record a CD. Get it done professionally, and get a lot of copies of the CD made. Trust me, in this day and age, with so much technology available to the average Joe, it isn't tough to make a good sounding CD. Spend the money, it will be worth it in the end. Also, make sure you, as a band, sound professional and together on the CD.

Once you've got your CD made, put together a collection of items for a press-kit type thing. This is the best part now, because you get to send your information to A&R reps.

In yyour press-kit, you will want a picture. An 8x10 glossy. Try to hire a professional photographer for it, or, if you can't afford it, find an amateur college student who will be willing to do it for cheap. College students will be your best friends during this time. Also, in your kit, you will want a biography of the band, no longer than one page in length. Make sure it's professional-looking, no slang, no fancy paper, grammatically correct, etc. You will want your professionally-made demo CD, and press clippings praising your band.

This press kit is what you send to A&R reps. They're the people who review the CD's and decide whether or not you're potentially worth the time and money. A promoter will usually be in contact with a few A&R reps, so if you can invited the A&R reps out to a few of your shows, and get to know them, you will have a HUGE advantage in getting your music signed.

Now, you send your press kit out. This is where it is vital that it looks professional. Record companies easily get 150 or more press kits PER DAY. They do not listen to all of them, don't even kid yourself by thinking that. They take the ones that look the most professional, the most MARKETABLE, and they put them into a "potential-listening to" pile. They will likely throw out 140 our of 150 of those press kits. They then listen to the remaining ones. And will probably end up throwing 8 or 9 of them out, just because the music is unlistenable: poor recording quality, a bad band, etc.

Oh, I forgot, before you send out your press kit, phone the record company. Make sure they are accepting press kits from new bands, make sure they will accept your type of music, make sure you know what the address is, etc. Otherwise, you might end up wasting your money sending packages to the wrong record companies. On the phone, make sure you are polite. If they aren't accepting demos, see if they might be in a few months, don't get angry at them.

Now, if you have an incredibly professional looking press kit, and you're a very good band, and you have a large local scene, you will grab the A&R rep's attention, and you might have your CD listened to.

Now, if this is an A&R rep you have not had at a show before you gave them the press kit, then THEY WILL WANT TO SEE YOU LIVE. This is why you have to put on a good show. If you make good music, but have a bad show, then you will not be signed, as you will likely lose the record company money, since no one will want to go to your concerts.

So, if you manage to get an A&R rep's attention, and he or she decides that you look good as a band, sound good as a band, and have a good stage show, you might enter contract talks with the company.

Also - if you haven't gotten a call back from the company after around 4-6 business weeks, phone them back, see if they have recieved the package. If they have, ask what they thought of it, prepare for a letdown, don't whine over the phone, do it to a friend.

So, if you're in talks, make sure you have a lawyer with you. An entertainment/music lawyer. They're expensive, so if you really can't afford it, I'd recommend saving up, or finding a college student IN HIS OR HER FINAL YEAR OF ENTERTAINMENT LAW, and asking them to help you out. Their fees will be much cheaper than a real lawyer, and they are usually almost as good as the real thing. However, if you can afford an actual lawyer, get one.

Now, make sure you know EVERYTHING about what you want in your record deal. How long you want your contract to be, how many albums, how much you want in royalties, how large will your advance be, will that affect future royalties, etc? Talk with the lawyer about everything you can think of, and everythign he can think of. THEN go into talks knowing exactly what you want. Remember: when it comes to money, start high, then go lower, If you start lower than what a record company will normally offer, they will absolutely take advantage of you.

Once the talks are finished and the contract is signed, hope that the public likes you, because if they don't, you're going to be out a lot of money, and the record company is going to want it back.

Note: a lot of this information was taken from friends of mine who work in the music industry, have worked with A&R reps, etc. As well, the website, which basically helped me organize the information into the order that things should be done in. This is probably the easiest and most likely way to get signed. Good luck, start saving now, because it's incredibly unlikely that you will be able to get all of this done in a timespan of less than three years.

07-13-2005, 07:59 PM
...and stay away from drugs, hard liquor, loose women and false friends... supposedly a crowbar and shaving cream helps

07-14-2005, 12:05 AM
Besides luck, and skill it really helps to know someone already involved.

Blurry 505
07-14-2005, 12:15 AM
^have you not read the whole thread
theyve covered that already

you have about 2 or 3 people in here that really know what their talking about..I for one, do not for sure..but i will second opinions:

you need a band that is wholey dedicated to the music you cant have a jam band and then hope you make it

you need the talent and need the talent to keep getting more and more need the patience to wait, get better, get more gigs, and finally (hopefully) get into the business

i believe the hardest part is finding a band for yourself that has lots of talent, along with all of you enjoying the music your playing