How to: The Music Business

I get a lot of requests for people wanting to know how to "get into the music business". Some people are honestly confused - which is understandable, because I'm actually IN the business, and I am still confused. This document is for all of the people who make music - and want to make music more.

This document is not a happy/flowery/you-can-do-it document. If I had written that, I could charge $300 for the online course that will make you excited to succeed… and it probably wouldn't work for you. I would have $300, though… so it would succeed on that level.

I understand negativity turns people off, so I've included the positive (and very very wrong) version of things as well.

On the left, you will find the real stuff.

On the right, you will find the stuff that doesn't work.

If you think music is a gateway to (fame/fabulous riches), and all you want is (fame/fabulous riches) - there are much MUCH easier ways to do that.

If you get irritable when you're not making music, and your only endorphin rush comes when you've made something awesome… I'm talking to you.

What would YOU do with $10 Million? Buy a house? Pay down your debts? Help out your family? Start thinking about it now - because you'll not have enough time to spend it all once the money starts Rolling In! You can work just 4 hours a week, and still not have enough time to spend it all - EVEN IF YOU BUY A BOAT! You don't even need any special skills. This is a simple plan. I've done it and YOU CAN TOO!

Define your passion.

It is a big world out there. However narrowly defined your interests are - there is probably enough audience to support you.

  • Accordion Folk Metal
  • 8-bit Progressive Tarantellas
  • Gypsy Solo Flute
  • 50's Country/Progressive Trance Fusion
  • All-woodwind Arrangements of 18th century Spanish operas

Helpful hint #1: Choose as many as you like!
Helpful hint #2: If your passion requires using other people's music directly - you're going to be in a quagmire of legal fights at some point. If you can nudge your passion away from that a bit, it'll save you a lot of headache.

Dubstep is hot, Hot, HOT! If you don't know Skrillex or Vex'd or Caspa yet, you will soon. It is time to get in on the GROUND FLOOR of DubStep Music! Best of all, DubStep is all created BY A COMPUTER! You don't need to remember those horrible piano lessons you had in 4th grade. You don't need to play music at all! THE COMPUTER DOES ALL THE WORK FOR YOU!!!

"I like everything!" You are wrong.
"I don't want to be put in a box." No one will sort through a pile to find you.
"I just want to express myself." Unless your audience is your family - no one has any reason to care about you.
"All music is equally valid!" No. It is not.

The best part is, it doesn't matter how things sound. PEOPLE JUST LOVE DUBSTEP! Let the computer do all of the work, and EARN BIG MONEY!!!

Learn everything you can.

You don't need to go to a dedicated school (or any school). You're reading this; You have the resources of the internet. There are tutorials and papers and examples and people. Find it all. Suck it in to your brain. Professional-level music production doesn't require any special knowledge. It is all done WITH A COMPUTER! There are tons and tons of free softwares that will make your WUBS sound AMAZING! Did you figure out what you're going to do with your $10 Million yet? That is just the START! You'll need to buy that big house on the hill just to HOLD ALL OF THE GIRAFFE FOOD you're going to need for your FLOCK OF PRIVATE GIRAFFES! That's the kind of thing famous people with $10 Million buy!!! You don't have to buy a flock of giraffes if you're scared by them, or whatever… BUT YOU CAN!!!!

Produce, Produce, Produce.

This may seem stupid to even mention, but there are a lot of folk who are very excited about the concept of making stuff - and they never seem to get past the concept stage. Just go make stuff. If you want to be hired, you need a resume. And in music production - the only thing that matters is how well you produce music. So crank out at least 10-20 pieces of all the types you want to write so everyone knows what you can do. You can start TODAY! You don't need to actually do anything - just have a good idea of the kind of music YOU LIKE! That's it! How did Beyonce gets rich and famous? It isn't because she did things. She had a CLEAR IDEA of what SHE WANTED to do. It is just like having a clear idea of what YOU WANT to do with that $10 Million! But with MUSIC. Ideas for music are DIFFICULT. Not just anyone can think up an idea. Turning those ideas into reality are the easy part BECAUSE COMPUTERS!!!!! I will show you how to come up with SUPER CAN'T-MISS SUCCESSFUL IDEAS just like Beyonce!

Market, Market, Market.

I do this in a sort of crazy way. I release stuff to everyone - for free. Super-wins all around! You help producers and more people hear you! Another way is: you can hire promoters, and see if you can get a representative... or a combination of the two. 

Bitter Reality #1: If no one knows who you are, that's your fault.
Bitter Reality #2: If no one hires you, that's your fault.
Bitter Reality #3: If no one likes your music, that's your fault.

Let's get started! It is SUPER IMPORTANT to ALWAYS PROTECT YOUR IDEAS. In my course, you'll learn how to come up with KILLER IDEAS, and you need to PROTECT THEM. Ideas are the most valuable thing ever invented. Billions of dollars were made JUST LAST YEAR from "Intellectual Property". And that is EXACTLY what music is! Giraffes is REAL property. They take up space and eat food that you have to STORE in your BIG HOUSE on the HILL! But Music doesn't take up ANY SPACE AT ALL! You can put Hundreds of Millions of Dollars worth of DubStep on a SINGLE COMPUTER like the one you ALREADY HAVE! You are halfway there!! Do not share the SECRET and VALUABLE music with ANYONE. If someone can hear it, they can STEAL IT! That is the problem with intellectual property. If someone is going to steal your giraffes, they need a LARGE TRUCK!

Getting to know you.

Chances are, anonymity is your biggest problem.

You need to get that out into the world in as many ways as make sense for your product.
I recommend:

  • Soundcloud
  • BandCamp
  • iTunes Music Store
  • Amazon Music Store
  • YouTube
  • Your own site

Bitter Reality #4: Music is not scarce.

Bitter Reality #5: If people can't hear it, they won't buy it.

Low quality previews will not drive sales... they just make you sound crappy. Give people a way to hear your stuff in the best way you can.

Insisting on charging for your music is a terrible idea when there are thousands of ways for people to get really good music from other people for free. People need to know about you before they have an idea to look for you.

I really recommend getting your own site. Head to SquareSpace, and find something nice. Put up your music. Be you.

Helpful Hint #3: People like people.

Tell people about live events. Talk with people on the Twitter/Facebook. Don't bug people to buy your stuff!

Bitter Reality #6: Effective marketing is really hard.

Now that you've got your ideas all implemented into MONEY MAKING PRODUCTS it is time to put them up for sale and watch the cash ROLL IN! For an investment of $199 per month, you can put your music on my exclusive purpose-built web-site! You get to charge AS MUCH AS YOU WANT for your music! $10 per download? $100 per download? $10,000??! It doesn't take that many downloads to make $10 Million!!!! How many? ONE HUNDRED people each buying just TEN tracks at $10,000 each, and you will make your FIRST $10 Million!!! That's your FIRST $10 Million!!! From only 100 people!!!! THIS IS REAL MATH!!!!! Go get that mortgage or car title loan - because you can pay it all back on your FIRST SALE! Music SELLS ITSELF!

Marketing 096" Basic Checklist.

Have you made it dead simple to get your music?

  • ANY actions you require of your audience will stop half of them.
  • Must register with someone to get a download? 80% of people are gone to simpler pastures.
  • Must provide email address to download? 70% of people are gone.
  • Must pay money to download? 99%+ of people are gone.
  • Must click through 3 pages to find music? 40% of people are gone.

When I say "dead simple", remember that no one has extra time for you… yet. Make it as simple as you can, and then figure out a way to make it twice as simple.

Have you made it dead simple for other people to use your music?

Creative Commons licenses are well understood and trusted.
Use any of the licenses that allow commercial use.

Bonus tip #1: Let everyone use your music in their video game / videos / restaurants for free. Free? Free. Gratis. Free. More people hear it. More people know you. AND producers get the music they want!

Now you know the SECRETS of MONEY and FAME by letting the COMPUTER DO ALL THE WORK making SICK WUBS and LETTING THE MUSIC SELL ITSELF! It is just that easy. Congratulations on MAKING THE BIG ONES! You DESERVE to live like you WANT TO LIVE. You DESERVE $10 Million and a HERD of MAJESTIC GIRAFFES just like all of the best SUPER RICH PEOPLE.