1. People in the music industry want to know about your band. Just not from you!
Managers, Labels, Booking Agents, Festival Promotors and just about everyone else in the music industry wants to discover the next incredible act. Unfortunately, they are all so busy juggling the careers of their current artists that they don’t have the time to listen to you tell them how great you are. Even if you are truly great.
Instead they want to hear about new acts from their friends, colleagues, trusted blogs and social media circles. This validates the music in their eyes and opens the door to having your music taken seriously. Think about this when you want approach particular people with in the industry. Is there a way you can get to them to listen to your band with out you going directly too them.
Let me give you an example. At the start of the year Hen House manager Chris gave me a copy of his band Graphic Characters finished album. I was absolutely blown away by it. I then went on the offensive and sent out a sample of my 3 favourite songs to people with in the industry that I have become friends with through my years in Gyroscope. We hit up labels, managers and booking agents at a numerous levels. After a while Chris was able to land a great deal with Ten To Two Records (Xavier Rudd, Seth Sentrey). The fact he had the amazing songs to back him up made it easy for me to go out on a limb for him.
Most bands starting out will pick a song they love and copy the riffs or melodies, which often ends up leaving you with a generic sounding song. We’re all guilty of this and thats ok. But next time why don’t you sit down with your notepad…have the song you’re inspired by pumping on the stereo…and write down its structure as well as the bar count of each section.
Experimenting with different song structures in this way will often provide you with some fresh perspectives on your songwriting as well as different ways to structure verse’s, choruses, bridges, into’s and outro’s.
If you want to take this to the next level. Pick really popular songs that are in a totally different genre to your band and implement their structure into your sound. Even better yet, don’t tell your band mates what you’re doing and you may well end up with a really exciting fresh song for your band! Shhh don’t tell the Gyro lads about this, but many song ideas for some of our heaviest songs are based around U2 song structures
3. You band will only improve as quick as your weakest member.
Seeing Dan (the singer of Gyroscope) put in 12 hour shifts on vocals for each new song we demo’d made me want to gain a better understanding of pro tools so I could help mix the demo’s once finished. I would spend hours mixing and editing the demo’s experimenting with different structures and ideas. Always trying to improve the song.
Watching Zoran our guitarist incredible work ethic in writing songs, coming with merch designs, tour posters and artwork encouraged me to take a larger role with in running social media side of things for Gyroscope…Making sure that sites were updated and we were interacting with fans.
Hearing Brad rapidly improve as a bass play over the course of each album inspired me to practise more and become a better drummer. To think of ways we could become a tighter and more interesting rhythm section.
All these examples show how my band mates motivated me without even knowing it to work harder for the great cause of our band. I have no doubt that the feeling was mutual. This shared drive and ambition is one of the key factors in our bands success.
Think about your band for a moment. Is everyone spurring each other on to improve. To work harder? Do you all share the same passion for the dream? If not send them a copy of this article!
Rob Nassif – firstname.lastname@example.org
The Hen House Rehearsal Studios