#1
Ok, I'm in a band and we want a devoted fan base, and not be super big, would it be quicker to gig a whole bunch then release a album or a demo or something, or release an album then gig? Thanks for your opinions in advance.
Oct. 20th, 2009: New guitar AND front row for Mars Volta.

Quote by denizenz
Is that a ukulele in your pants, or did you just rip ass to the tune of "Aloha Oi"?


I met Sonic Youth on June 30th, and Mars Volta on Oct 20th.
#2
who's going to buy your album if you've never been heard of? gigging is a great way to get your name out there first.
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#3
Yes, you have a point but if you record the album first you can sell them at your gig so if they like you, they have the opportunity to buy the album before they forget about it.
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#4
Gig first dude. It's like religion. You need to build your confidence and stage presence first. Doing gigs builds your stage character and your confidence and abilities to play with distraction. This is the stuff you need to be a public figure. Being a band with a fanbase is like politics. You gotta build your rep then run. Not run to gain popularity to build your rep.
#5
I have no experience with this at all, but by my logic I would think that it would be good to have some kind of album, or EP that you can sell at gigs so people will remember your music. Otherwise people will likely forget who you are.
#6
Thanks guys, real great advice, we were thinking that doing like an ep and selling them with some merch at some shows would be a great idea, and Guitar Sushi is totally spot on too.
Oct. 20th, 2009: New guitar AND front row for Mars Volta.

Quote by denizenz
Is that a ukulele in your pants, or did you just rip ass to the tune of "Aloha Oi"?


I met Sonic Youth on June 30th, and Mars Volta on Oct 20th.
#7
Prolly gig first. Thats what my band is doing. We're gigging, while working on a demo. Then when we ge the demo done, we'll sell it at the gigs.
#8
there is no need to do an album/ep/merch before you start gigging unless someone in your band was in like, fugazi or something. you probably won't be a good enough live band that people will be impressed enough to buy your stuff with your first few performances. furthermore, playing live helps shape your songs. you get to figure out what works and what doesn't.

seriously, play a few shows. then start to think about putting together a demo. don't call your demo or album an ep unless it is. i expect an ep or album to have a certain level of quality, a certain amount of polish, to be mastered, whereas for a demo i appreciate that these are more rough sketches, that won't necessarily be perfect.

furthermore, i would suggest giving your demo away for free. people have this perception that doing so is a bad idea because people put no worth on something thats free. this really isn't true. if a band is good live and they have a free demo, i will take it and listen to it. most people will do the same thing.

its also worth mentioning that there are different kinds of demos. very rough rehearsal room recordings are worth doing early; if they give a rough idea of what you sound like, and show you are all competent, they're fine for giving to promoters to look for shows; these people will, generally, be able to see past not so great recording to decide if they want to book you, especially if you point out that they aren't great recordings. they aren't worth giving away to more casual listeners though, because these people are more used to well recorded things and often won't see past the poor recording quality.

i hope some of this advice was useful to you.
my name is matt. you can call me that if you like.
#9
Great advice Matt, I think everybody's ideas were great, we're gonna tighten up our songs, play a few gigs, record the good stuff, and see what happens. Thanks guys.
Oct. 20th, 2009: New guitar AND front row for Mars Volta.

Quote by denizenz
Is that a ukulele in your pants, or did you just rip ass to the tune of "Aloha Oi"?


I met Sonic Youth on June 30th, and Mars Volta on Oct 20th.
#10
If you know someone that has basic recording stuff then your sorted. Practice and when you've wrote a few songs record a basic demo. Then it will be much easier to get gigs as you can send the demo to the venue.. Then when you'be built a fanbase from gigging, record a good quality EP at a professional studio to sell.
#11
its a good idea to record just like a 3 song demo, it'll allow you to give them to bar-owners so they can decide whether they want you to gig there.
#12
Quote by AwesomeDrummer
its a good idea to record just like a 3 song demo, it'll allow you to give them to bar-owners so they can decide whether they want you to gig there.

This.

Build up a small reputation, make sure people know who you are, at least in the context of not having to say "we haven't gigged yet, BUT" because by the time you say "but" most people will have tuned out.
Another idea is to record a small demo, 2/3 songs before you start gigging, but only JUST before. Like, get a gig confirmed, then record, so you can hand something out during the gig, while other bands are playing, whatever.
#13
Play gigs before releasing anything

Then peoople will actually buy you records and then go to more of your gigs to hear this material, where people will buy more of it, come to more of your gigs and slowly (everything going to plan) your name will slwoly get out there more
#14
Record about 4 track you don't have to use amazing equipment just make sure what comes out represents you well. Hand the 4 track demo out everywhere and anyway possible and make it available for download on sites like mp3.com and have a link for that on your myspace. This will always create some attention to your band and sales cand be use to convince gig promoters.