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How many folks here have released a record?
Old 10th February 2009
  #1
Lives for gear
 
bgrotto's Avatar
How many folks here have released a record?

Howdy, folks. I'm curious as to how many of you rap, R&B, or hip-hop guys (and gals!) have released an album, whether as an artist or producer. I'm not talking about a mix tape, or a compilation, but a full-length, all-original-material album.

What kind of budgets do you work in? How long does it take you to make it, start-to-finish? What format do you release it?

How many songs? What's the running time? Do you include any skits or other "filler"-type tracks?

And how do you promote it? What avenues do you use to sell it?

Also, do you play live shows? Do you sell your record at gigs? How does it sell? How much do you sell it for?

What kind of legal concerns have you come across (with regards to sample clearance, etc)?

The reason I'm asking is because I've had an influx of mix gigs from hip hop artists lately (and actually, come to think of it, throughout my whole career), and many of them never seem to actually FINISH their record. And those that do don't seem to have a solid means of promoting their hard work. In the world of live bands, recording and promoting a record is a pretty standard, straight-ahead undertaking. I'm hoping to learn a bit more about how indie hip hop artists promote their albums so I can lend some advice to my clients working to get their music out there (and land myself more album gigsheh, which I personally find more rewarding than mixtapes or similar projects).

Thanks, everyone
Old 10th February 2009
  #2
11562
Guest
2 albums released for my artist working on 3rd.

2002 game over
2008 devil on my back
2009 untitled

SLO-O Album On ITUNES Now~ fT: STYLES-P,FREEWAY~ on MySpace Music - Free Streaming MP3s, Pictures & Music Videos
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #3
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bgrotto's Avatar
Nice. Sooo...were you the artist? Producer? What was the budget like? How/where/when do you promote these things?
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #4
11562
Guest
im the producer. probably medium size budget. invested a lot. you gota spend money to make money just like any other business.

promote in the streets & word of mouth. we gota decent followin on myspace and youtube. about to drop 2nd video.

i could tell you more but then ill have to kill you!
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #5
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bgrotto's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Checkmate Muzik ➑️
i could tell you more but then ill have to kill you!
Old 10th February 2009
  #6
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cynic one's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
my group released 1 official album, december 2007. 17 tracks, as much material as we could fit on that bitch. no skits, that **** is wack to me. took us about 3 years to finish that all up because we're spread out across northern ca. (oakland, san jose, sacramento)

smallish budget. spent most of it on gear for myself, mastering ($1500ish), cd pressing and some merchandise. sold a few through itunes / cdbaby, but nothing huge and noteworthy. released cd / mp3.

promotion at shows, hand to hand, myspace, blogs, etc.

CD Baby: DAMAGED GOODS: Beyond Repair

if you're an underground act these days if you aint doin shows you aint doin ****.

we ****ed up because we werent in a position to play shows after we released. being spread out 2 hours apart from each other is a nogo. gonna fix that this year so we can pick it up again.

contrast that with the other group from my crew who opened for the RZA last night @ mezzanine in SF. they do shows constantly, give away CDs, but sell hella merchandise.

Who Cares on MySpace Music - Free Streaming MP3s, Pictures & Music Videos

they didn't spend **** on their latest cd, didn't get it pro mixed or anything. their live show is the **** though and they constantly sell out small and medium sized venues. they've got 2 albums out now though and are starting to do big things.
Old 10th February 2009
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
Howdy, folks. I'm curious as to how many of you rap, R&B, or hip-hop guys (and gals!) have released an album, whether as an artist or producer. I'm not talking about a mix tape, or a compilation, but a full-length, all-original-material album.
I released an album in 2006.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
What kind of budgets do you work in? How long does it take you to make it, start-to-finish? What format do you release it?
Worked in basically no budget. I did everything myself (with very few exceptions, where I either paid or got a big favor). So I traded time more so than money. I had 1000 copies replicated with a place that did nice work (quality printing,materials, etc.) and paid about $2.30/unit.. may seem high to some people, but I wanted my product to look good. And am still happy I went that route, while others were cheap and sometimes unsatisfied with the product quality.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
How many songs? What's the running time? Do you include any skits or other "filler"-type tracks?
11 songs (last song is an outro, but intentionally (though ironically) one of the more "standout" parts of the album.

No skits, or filler type tracks.

40 mins running time.

And how do you promote it? What avenues do you use to sell it?

Hand to hand (I mean approaching strangers on the street), live shows, house parties...

1000 copies sold. (Well, technically like ~950)

Internet sales (ie, PayPal) amounts to nada (less than 20 copies, mostly knowing about the album from another fan -- not internet!!)

In store sales (ie, urban clothing shops, etc.) I sold about 100...

Shows I did pretty good if it was setup well to cater to me in that department.

HANDS DOWN, hustling in the street sold my album. This **** ain't crack. Nobody wants another CD.. you gotta sell this ****!
I don't think it's a job for most people, as I've seen how others approach it, and it turns me off... and I'm not surprised their sales don't work out (although of course they'll and tell you they're almost Gold now!)

How long did it take me to make it?

I released it in 2006.. I did the songs (instrumentals and lyrics) in 2003-2004. Two of the songs were done in early 2005. I guess it makes it 4 years to complete.

It was a learning experiment. I didn't really care about releasing an album. I just wanted to do it learn/face the challenges involved that you can't see until you do it. Yep, I was right. All sorts of **** I didn't count on.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
Also, do you play live shows? Do you sell your record at gigs? How does it sell? How much do you sell it for?
Play live, yes. Not like crazy. I don't care to over saturate myself, at least if I think the gig isn't that special. I've also promoted my own shows successfully, but it was always a headache. Just showing up and performing is where it's at!!

I've always sold my album $10 where it's a personal connection (at a show, or from me directly). In stores, it sells for $15. (cdn)

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
What kind of legal concerns have you come across (with regards to sample clearance, etc)?
I got a cease and desist order from Playboy Inc. involving a show I was promoting once.
As for the album, I've faced no clearance issues. I don't expect to. It's a very small scale project.
People of all types (ie, not just beatmakers) have recognized samples from the album. It uses samples in most of the tracks, and while I used a lot of stuff out of the norm for hip hop, they certainly weren't rare songs I sampled sometimes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
The reason I'm asking is because I've had an influx of mix gigs from hip hop artists lately (and actually, come to think of it, throughout my whole career), and many of them never seem to actually FINISH their record. And those that do don't seem to have a solid means of promoting their hard work. In the world of live bands, recording and promoting a record is a pretty standard, straight-ahead undertaking. I'm hoping to learn a bit more about how indie hip hop artists promote their albums so I can lend some advice to my clients working to get their music out there (and land myself more album gigsheh, which I personally find more rewarding than mixtapes or similar projects).

Thanks, everyone
People don't finish, cause, well.. who really cares. Light a joint.

I don't know when I expect to do another album. I'm too busy learning, exploring, etc.
I want an album to be cohesive, and right now growing too quickly to want to lock myself into the idea of making an album.

Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Keyflo's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Im working on my artist album now, so far we in atleast 6 or 7 songs. His name is Kay-M.

We havent came up with a album name yet but when its done ill let you know..

as far as the role i played, i was the producer, i co wrote a couple of the songs. Like i said im waiting for the other 6 songs to get done.

Im not major with it yet, and NO ITS NOT A MIXTAPE!!!

He's gonna do a couple shows to promote it when its done, We also plan on selling it at FYE or Samgoody. I think he built a pretty decent fan base not only in his neighborhood, but online as well, he recently won the 106 and park free style battle thing they have and he does freestyle battles out in NY.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Addict
 
idlabs's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
All the albums I've been a part of (as a producer/dj) that have actually been released were similar to the stories above. Pieced together over a lengthy period of time, shoe-string budgets, lots of local promotion/shows, etc. As an engineer/mixer, only a handful of the hundreds of projects I've worked on have been released as an 'album'. Most of the time people call it a mixtape, or sometimes a 'street album', because, IMO, there is less expectation. If they called it an album (which alot of times they could've, being all original tracks, etc) there would be real pressure to make sure thing were done properly. At least thats my take on it.

One thing I make sure to tell people when they're doing an album (or a mixtape) is to not ignore local press, college radio, and doing shows at any and every place you can, large or small. It seems like to me, alot of dudes just ignore that stuff when, in Pittsburgh at least (and I'm sure other smallish cities), those are all very accessible avenues of promotion. The internet is an obvious way to try to get exposure, but local press in particular, backed up by shows, can really help to make you look more together and 'official' and, in my experience, give people alot more incentive to see what your about, rather than just ignore you all together.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
I have been in bands that have released records on their own and also been on major label releases.

If you do it on your own, it is worth the money to buy a UPC and register on Soundscan. I have also managed some bands, and by doing this, got A&Rs that I had never contacted, calling me about the group and flying out to watch them.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
my plans

i'm going to start working on a free ep soon with mostly cover/remixes (maybe change a verse here and there in the song) of current and past popular R&B/hip-hop songs to show my ability and hope to get feedback from that while working on my all-original demo-cd to shop to labels. my budget will pretty much be all my own money i.e. doing pre-production at home then doing vocals/live drums where i feel appropriate/random stuff in big studios. luckily i already got a big-time engineer out here in LA to mix my ish i just have to pay for the room and he's done it for me in the past on the tip of if my stuff gets serious he'll be that dude for me in the future.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Gear Nut
 
🎧 10 years
3 years ago I bought an mpc 2000xl and started writing my own stuff with intent to do an album. I have about 10 songs written and 2 almost finished. I decided I wanted to record the album myself having no idea what that would really entail. Now three years later I am still building the sound I want buying it one piece at a time. I pretty much read all day every day about technique then go home at night and apply it. I spend every spare cent I have on equipment and I wouldn't have it any other way. It's kind of funny though because I am to the point now where I don't even care if I release an album, I became so addicted to the process that I just like recording music. I have ended up working on other peoples stuff alot more than mine. Set to finish a few albums this year. I guess my budget would be whatever scratch I can hussle up. probably about 15 to 20 grand a year. Sorry this isn't quite on topic just thought I'd share. Oh and I guess I would be the artist, producer and engineer.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Lives for gear
 
KevWest's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I did in high school. The budget was minimal I burned cds and sold them at school and around town. I made my beats in bandinabox with my casio keyboard. The album was horrid but I've done it. Since then I've done production on several original albums that have been released.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by idlabs ➑️
All the albums I've been a part of (as a producer/dj) that have actually been released were similar to the stories above. Pieced together over a lengthy period of time, shoe-string budgets, lots of local promotion/shows, etc. As an engineer/mixer, only a handful of the hundreds of projects I've worked on have been released as an 'album'. Most of the time people call it a mixtape, or sometimes a 'street album', because, IMO, there is less expectation. If they called it an album (which alot of times they could've, being all original tracks, etc) there would be real pressure to make sure thing were done properly. At least thats my take on it.
With this perspective in mind -
Would you encourage an artist to call a collection of original material intended for release a "street album" if it wasn't upto par? ( shoestring, varied quality, haphazard amateur mix, etc.

and save the "album" designation for when they can get it done right?
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #15
Here for the gear
 
🎧 10 years
1st project im working on
2 years - 9 songs
$2000 advance to the artist & producer when they needed money while working on this project.
$2000 platinum+ mixing engineer
$800 platinum+ mastering engineer
just finish mastering

getting artwork done which is gonna hit us 750-1500
and probably gonna press up 2000 cd's mostly for promo reasons

but so far it aint even released and its gonna hit me over $10k at least by the time its out and then whatever its gonna cost to market the album

didnt include my studio monthly rent or studio gear cus the room pays for it self
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
never any major stuff.
some no to low budget 12" singles, cd singles, video's, ep's and albums also a couple of compilation tracks.

since there's no real money involved i don't do deadlines and work on a take it or leave it basis.

i don't like working on albums, #$%#@ takes too long and most never get released, it's just one big hassle.

i stay as far as possible from recording vox (read: being in the same spot as the "artists"), yuk! just send me the already recorded edited and whatever acappella with the exact bpm please. i don't need the drama.

i don't market or promote that stuff.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
goldenlotus's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by beat you down ➑️
i stay as far as possible from recording vox (read: being in the same spot as the "artists"), yuk! just send me the already recorded edited and whatever acappella with the exact bpm please. i don't need the drama.
Wow you're missing out man!
Old 10th February 2009
  #18
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
I've got more albums released than I really care to count as a producer/mixer. I've also run a couple indie labels and/or done marketing consulting for indie labels and managed an artist that actually did pretty okay (made it on MTV). I'll try to systematically answer your questions.

As for budgets: It varies widely. The R&B people will generally spend more on their album than the rap folks. The general attitude is that almost anyone can engineer rap and the producer only really needs to know how to make beats. The R&B folks try this and watch the whole thing turn to poo and sound like ass. They learn quickly to hire people who can do R&B, and those people tend to charge more obviously. It's common to have a few "pricey" songs and and some "cheap filler". Even when I'm only the mixer people will straight up tell me "we're having you mix the three songs that count, we got some guy to do the others for $100 each" LOL... same thing with production.

Start to finish: Rock records are generally a ton of planning and preproduction, then you knock the recording/mixing out fast. Hip-Hop and R&B is the opposite. A lot of onesy-twosy recording. Most of the artists I've worked with spend a year (or more) from the first time the record button is pressed to the last mix master being turned in. Also, on nearly every project I've worked on, there is some bozo producer who holds up the show and delays everything a couple months.

Format for release: CD for physical plus itunes/Amazon/etc. Wax for the singles up until about three years ago - that was the last time I got a piece of wax for a record I did; now it's all digital. At first I was sad until I realised I never played them because vinyl sounds like ass in comparison to the CD.... so I sold my turntable. I have a box somewhere with all my wax in it.

# of songs: Rap has the most, R&B has the least. At least 12 and go up from there. Skits are on at least half the albums I've worked on.

Promotion: The biggest difference is promoting singles to DJs via pools and mixshows. Otherwise, at it's core, you are using the same set of tools - just with different 'flava' lol. Saleable outlets are the same, although I see more hip-hop artists willing to hit the streets (litterally) slangin' their CDs than anyone else.

Shows: They are critical. It's the same thing, but you are doing track dates, and booking those shows is really an entirely different kind of process. I think that's really where the rock folks go "what the f*ck is going on?!?!?" You still do your merch at shows just like a rock band.

As for landing album gigs as opposed to the other crud.... I find that price usually keeps the non-serious kiddies away from me. They try and haggle and I generally say, "no" and it ends there and they find someone else. But trying to make sure you are workign on album material as opposed to stuff that doesn't get released is really difficult. People don't come to you looking for you to produce an entire album, it's all onesy-twosy. Even my mixing-only gigs I still get onesy-twosy. I even give lower rates for more songs and I tell them "you know, it's cheaper to have me mix 8 songs as opposed to 2" and they don't care. They'll have me mix the two and then they'll come back next month with two more, and the month after that with two more, etc. LOL. But it's indicative of the way these albums are made (see Start to Finish, above). They like to cut a tune and complete it and then move on to the next song more often than not. The big exception being some of the bigger major label stuff where they'll sit with a producer's mix and then IF the song is going on the album have the big mixer do it. But that pretty much never happens in indie-land.




Quote:
Originally Posted by bgrotto ➑️
Howdy, folks. I'm curious as to how many of you rap, R&B, or hip-hop guys (and gals!) have released an album, whether as an artist or producer. I'm not talking about a mix tape, or a compilation, but a full-length, all-original-material album.

What kind of budgets do you work in? How long does it take you to make it, start-to-finish? What format do you release it?

How many songs? What's the running time? Do you include any skits or other "filler"-type tracks?

And how do you promote it? What avenues do you use to sell it?

Also, do you play live shows? Do you sell your record at gigs? How does it sell? How much do you sell it for?

What kind of legal concerns have you come across (with regards to sample clearance, etc)?

The reason I'm asking is because I've had an influx of mix gigs from hip hop artists lately (and actually, come to think of it, throughout my whole career), and many of them never seem to actually FINISH their record. And those that do don't seem to have a solid means of promoting their hard work. In the world of live bands, recording and promoting a record is a pretty standard, straight-ahead undertaking. I'm hoping to learn a bit more about how indie hip hop artists promote their albums so I can lend some advice to my clients working to get their music out there (and land myself more album gigsheh, which I personally find more rewarding than mixtapes or similar projects).

Thanks, everyone
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #19
Lives for gear
 
terrytee's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
In the title of hip-hop producer a couple of LP's as the soul producer of the projects, although not always me doing the engineering, plus some ep's, some 12's and even a few 7" and compilations. With reference to the compilations i can say most of them i have never gave any permission for them to jack my **** . Can't forget guests production on other cats LP's EP's all indie, **** knows who is getting paid but am not getting enough, type of budgets. These days i tend to do the mixes myself but definitely not the mastering. More work to come, if i can be bothered to pull my finger out . I have stayed away from skits as much as possible when doing an LP. Way i work is just to get as much material as possible together then break it all down to 12 or so songs. LP running time ?? hell am not sure but all wax has been doubles so i guess 50 minutes tops. (BTW wax is an expensive way to make money not only in pressing but also weight, don't think i will be doing much vinyl in the future and if i do i won't be paying for it that can be someone else problem having to many records only means you have to sell them at a loss) As far as samples clearance goes i have always said **** it am not doing that **** and the LP work has all been samples. Now granted there not selling millions so since i no am not topping the billboard and its not major labels just like Audio Two said "I DON"T CARE"

Length of time it takes to make a LP (I.E.) record it has took no longer than 4 weeks presuming the material is there so its manly a case of organizing things and studio time. Pressing wax you can take longer. Worked with one rapper who was ultra idealistic on how he saw the vision which turned out to be total focussed on him and not 50/50 with the music took way to long to Finnish.

Gigs are the first port of call not only to see ppls reactions to the work but also getting paid upfront. It's better than chasing a distributor for your dough 6 months down the line. Sell c.d.'s, wax mix-tapes at shows, t-shirts, yes again cash upfront and tax free. discount the c.d.'s by a third and you can still get good money for them. Hit up Radio & hip-hop magazines for free promotion plus loyal fans or as the technical term goes street team to sticker anything in sight with your name/logo.
Old 10th February 2009 | Show parent
  #20
Lives for gear
 
tonymission's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I've released actual RECORDS, like vinyl... but it was Drum & Bass and probably no more than 2-3000 copies and two tracks A/AA lol

I really wanna do a side project with my crazier, more creative stuff (the vault music) ... maybe my own brand of ElectroPOP just because that's where all the chicks are at now and you can be a complete jackass (vocally) and still get a fanbase
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
This is the advice I've been giving everyone that have asked me similar questions.

make songs to perfect your craft and to keep creating, but I wouldn't focus on making an album just for the sake of saying you have an album.

I would spend 110% of my energy trying to write a HIT!

ALL YOU NEED IS 1 nowadays!

When you got that hit, spend that money you was gonna spend on a full album and promote that single. Master it. Put it on itunes, push it at radio, do shows, ringtone dist etc. Get a following. Make a name for yourself, then push another HIT single. By this time you should start getting the buzz in your region and that will get the attention of labels that can give you the money for hot productions. No label wants to put money into an act that can't make hits.

I also tell cats, STOP TRYING TO SELL YOUR ALBUMS! I'm not even trying to be mean. I worked in f'n A&R at a MAJOR label and you know how many cats wouldn't give me their album because they wanted $10 for it. That was their loss! Why would I buy something I don't know ANYTHING about. Most people won't buy they favorite artists albums but they'll download that ish for free tho! The money is in shows, ringtones and merch now. if you're going to make an album or push a single and you're a no name. GIVE IT AWAY FOR FREE!!! If your stuff is good people will check for you. They will want to hear more. If you do a show, they will come check you out, why? BECAUSE THEY KNOW YOUR MUSIC AND YOUR NAME!

so lets say that song is garbage PEOPLE WILL STILL know your name! WHen you make that hit, someone will say "i remember when he was handing out his music, that was wack but this right here is nice"

I'm personally not even interested in most new artist's album until I hear 2-3 hits. Yeah I might feel like I'm "late" but aren't most people? Top 40 is a good example.

that's my 2 cents if you want to pass it on.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #22
JDN
Lives for gear
 
JDN's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by koldice ➑️
1st project im working on
2 years - 9 songs
$2000 advance to the artist & producer when they needed money while working on this project.
$2000 platinum+ mixing engineer
$800 platinum+ mastering engineer
just finish mastering

getting artwork done which is gonna hit us 750-1500
and probably gonna press up 2000 cd's mostly for promo reasons

but so far it aint even released and its gonna hit me over $10k at least by the time its out and then whatever its gonna cost to market the album

didnt include my studio monthly rent or studio gear cus the room pays for it self
you got a good platinum mixer for $2,000 for 9 songs....that is DIRT cheap.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #23
Lives for gear
 
tonymission's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicB ➑️
This is the advice I've been giving everyone that have asked me similar questions.

make songs to perfect your craft and to keep creating, but I wouldn't focus on making an album just for the sake of saying you have an album.

I would spend 110% of my energy trying to write a HIT!

ALL YOU NEED IS 1 nowadays!

When you got that hit, spend that money you was gonna spend on a full album and promote that single. Master it. Put it on itunes, push it at radio, do shows, ringtone dist etc. Get a following. Make a name for yourself, then push another HIT single. By this time you should start getting the buzz in your region and that will get the attention of labels that can give you the money for hot productions. No label wants to put money into an act that can't make hits.

I also tell cats, STOP TRYING TO SELL YOUR ALBUMS! I'm not even trying to be mean. I worked in f'n A&R at a MAJOR label and you know how many cats wouldn't give me their album because they wanted $10 for it. That was their loss! Why would I buy something I don't know ANYTHING about. Most people won't buy they favorite artists albums but they'll download that ish for free tho! The money is in shows, ringtones and merch now. if you're going to make an album or push a single and you're a no name. GIVE IT AWAY FOR FREE!!! If your stuff is good people will check for you. They will want to hear more. If you do a show, they will come check you out, why? BECAUSE THEY KNOW YOUR MUSIC AND YOUR NAME!

so lets say that song is garbage PEOPLE WILL STILL know your name! WHen you make that hit, someone will say "i remember when he was handing out his music, that was wack but this right here is nice"

I'm personally not even interested in most new artist's album until I hear 2-3 hits. Yeah I might feel like I'm "late" but aren't most people? Top 40 is a good example.

that's my 2 cents if you want to pass it on.

this post is right all the way around. i cant tell ya how many cats were askin me for beats or to "put them on" (ahh if it was that easy) yet had a hard time understanding me not paying for their cd.

i support **** i like.

i dont support just for the sake of it. i'd be broke living where i do. there's a wrapped van every hundred yards with a street team inside lol
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Yeah I agree with MicB, especially from an A&R perspective, since I am in that world too.

If you put out a record as an unknown, why would anyone invest the time to listen to all of it? I mean I barely can listen to indie and major releases all the way through anymore.

I have been a singles producer since day 1. Like I said in my first post, I have been in bands that released records, but they were on labels. I tell bands now, to make an album with 3-4 of the best tracks they have ever made. You would be amazed at how many bands will argue that and still want to put an entire record out. These are the same bands that submit you their record, and when you ask for the single, they say something lame like "all of them man!".

This is a singles driven market right now, especially in hip hop. You just need that one hit to get your name out there and establish your sound. In other words don;t make records, let the RECORD company assist you with that task.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Lives for gear
 
ryst's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Methlab ➑️
Yeah I agree with MicB, especially from an A&R perspective, since I am in that world too.

If you put out a record as an unknown, why would anyone invest the time to listen to all of it? I mean I barely can listen to indie and major releases all the way through anymore.

I have been a singles producer since day 1. Like I said in my first post, I have been in bands that released records, but they were on labels. I tell bands now, to make an album with 3-4 of the best tracks they have ever made. You would be amazed at how many bands will argue that and still want to put an entire record out. These are the same bands that submit you their record, and when you ask for the single, they say something lame like "all of them man!".

This is a singles driven market right now, especially in hip hop. You just need that one hit to get your name out there and establish your sound. In other words don;t make records, let the RECORD company assist you with that task.
You are def right as far as a lot of band's attitudes are these days. I will be giving away my 5 song EP when it's done later this month. It's FREE promotion to get people to my live show. I don't buy anyone's cd that I don't know and I don't expect the same from anyone else. Bands that encourage file sharing are ahead of the game IMO (google Artic Monkeys for example). I tell that to every band and artist I meet. Give your music away. Assuming it's great, they will come see you at your show. Sell tees, stickers, buttons, posters at the show....and when you get a good fan base that loves your live show and cd, then make a dvd and sell it with the cd included for free. Visual media still isn't taken advantage of by unsigned acts the way it should be these days.

And any band who wants to put out a full record with no fan base is wasting a lot of time and money. EP's are definitely the way to go.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #26
Lives for gear
 
1 Review written
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by JDN ➑️
you got a good platinum mixer for $2,000 for 9 songs....that is DIRT cheap.
The thing is, and I've seen this so many times, people will go to Mr. big name mixer and say...

Artist: "I want 9 songs mixed. How much?"
Mixer: "That'll be $18k"
Artist: "I only got $2k"
Mixer: "Okay, I'll give you an hour and a half mix time per song and I'll mix all 9 songs for $2k."
Artist: "cool."

Mixer then procedes to do exactly what artist hires him for and does the 1.5 hour mixes. I then get a phone call that goes something like this.

Artist: "I had this guy mix these songs, but the mixes suck. I need you to mix them over again."
Me: "Okay, will that be cash, Vias, MC or Amex?"
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #27
Lives for gear
 
cynic one's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicB ➑️
I also tell cats, STOP TRYING TO SELL YOUR ALBUMS! I'm not even trying to be mean. I worked in f'n A&R at a MAJOR label and you know how many cats wouldn't give me their album because they wanted $10 for it. That was their loss! Why would I buy something I don't know ANYTHING about. Most people won't buy they favorite artists albums but they'll download that ish for free tho! The money is in shows, ringtones and merch now. if you're going to make an album or push a single and you're a no name. GIVE IT AWAY FOR FREE!!! If your stuff is good people will check for you. They will want to hear more. If you do a show, they will come check you out, why? BECAUSE THEY KNOW YOUR MUSIC AND YOUR NAME!
this right here is golden. i learned it the hard way, but it's the truth. give that ****ing album away. nobody really buys **** anymore. we sold maybe a few k hand to hand at shows and **** but it was like pulling teeth. my boys who i mentioned in the previous post just give cds away now but kill it on tshirts and show attendance.

i wanted to knock people the **** out sitting outside of record stores pushing my tunes. i'm an artist, not a ****ing salesman but i did it for months. makes it especially difficult if you're already caked up off some other hustle....not worth it at all for me to stand out there and push ****!
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #28
Lives for gear
 
C Heat's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicB ➑️

I would spend 110% of my energy trying to write a HIT!

ALL YOU NEED IS 1 nowadays!
[email protected]&kin Amen to that.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #29
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by MicB ➑️
This is the advice I've been giving everyone that have asked me similar questions.

make songs to perfect your craft and to keep creating, but I wouldn't focus on making an album just for the sake of saying you have an album.

I would spend 110% of my energy trying to write a HIT!

ALL YOU NEED IS 1 nowadays!

When you got that hit, spend that money you was gonna spend on a full album and promote that single. Master it. Put it on itunes, push it at radio, do shows, ringtone dist etc. Get a following. Make a name for yourself, then push another HIT single. By this time you should start getting the buzz in your region and that will get the attention of labels that can give you the money for hot productions. No label wants to put money into an act that can't make hits.

I also tell cats, STOP TRYING TO SELL YOUR ALBUMS! I'm not even trying to be mean. I worked in f'n A&R at a MAJOR label and you know how many cats wouldn't give me their album because they wanted $10 for it. That was their loss! Why would I buy something I don't know ANYTHING about. Most people won't buy they favorite artists albums but they'll download that ish for free tho! The money is in shows, ringtones and merch now. if you're going to make an album or push a single and you're a no name. GIVE IT AWAY FOR FREE!!! If your stuff is good people will check for you. They will want to hear more. If you do a show, they will come check you out, why? BECAUSE THEY KNOW YOUR MUSIC AND YOUR NAME!

so lets say that song is garbage PEOPLE WILL STILL know your name! WHen you make that hit, someone will say "i remember when he was handing out his music, that was wack but this right here is nice"

I'm personally not even interested in most new artist's album until I hear 2-3 hits. Yeah I might feel like I'm "late" but aren't most people? Top 40 is a good example.

that's my 2 cents if you want to pass it on.
Thanx. Back to the drawing board I go.
Old 11th February 2009 | Show parent
  #30
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Yeah I have. 'Sparx - Why Not?' 15 tracks, I did about 18 months ago for trebble kleff records in London. I had to do stem mixing / mastering. Took about 2 days, had quite a bit of fun on that one. Some of the vox sounded sh*t when I got them but they polished up quite nice.
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