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  • Songstuff Writer and Artist Development Challenges

    By john

    Independent writers and artists face several large disadvantages when they are compared to signed, mainstream writers and artists.  Disadvantages that add up to making it a competition that indies can’t win. Hell they can’t even compete.   Lack of budget and poor contacts are fairly obvious disadvantages. Lack of experience and a lack of knowledge restricts songwriters and artists alike. Lack of an overall strategy, and a limited set of incomplete tactics, makes for a critical problem

34 Songs To Record!

Eek! How did it get to be so many? 34. That’s not including the radio edits.   So while I am recording, I am also sorting songs, creating a song inventory and trying to make sense of it. I’m not so sure about how to categorise the way isolated riffs, one or lines of lyrics, recordings of melodies. Not my problem today.   Today, I choose my lead singles. The 2 or 3 stand alone sings, not currently planned to be on an EP or album. The track lists are shaping up nicely. Today I

john in EP 1

Gaining Visibility in a Saturated Music Market

Breaking through the noise in today’s music industry can be daunting, especially with the sheer volume of new music being released every day. However, there are several effective strategies that artists can use to enhance their visibility and stand out in a crowded market. Here’s a deeper dive into how you can increase your visibility:   1. Utilize Social Media Platforms Strategically Content Variety: Post a mix of content related to your music, including behind-the-scenes footage

john in 2024

Why Marketing Your Music Matters

Understanding the 80/20 Rule in Music Success In the music industry, there's a popular saying that goes, "having a successful song is 20% about the music and 80% about the marketing." At first glance, this might seem a bit surprising. Isn't it all about the music? While the quality of the music is undoubtedly crucial, the role of effective marketing in the success of a song can't be overstated. Let’s break down why this is the case.   The Importance of Music Quality Firstly,

john in 2024

Light Up Your Music with Songstuff's Showcase!

Have you ever felt like your music was a hidden gem waiting to be discovered? Guess what? It’s your time to shine! The Songstuff Music Community is here with our awesome Showcase feature, and trust me, you don’t want to miss out on this. What’s the Buzz with the Showcase? In the vast ocean of music, finding a spot to bask in the limelight can be tough. That's where the Songstuff Showcase sails in! Located at the heart of our community (right here, click away!), this special area is all

john in 2024

Day 1276%@ - and I'm trying to keep steady

Making a record is so much work! In the past 2 years, I felt like getting things set up for the actual work would be the hardest task - putting together a team, curating the songs, figuring out the budget etc. Now that these things are out of the way, I expected to feel a little relieved about it. I'm only intimidated about the things to come - getting the second round of demos recorded with the musicians, setting up the crowd funding campaign for the all the logistical costs, reviving my f

Get To Know Your Audience

It’s not a single, simple thing. Knowing your audience is the product of asking a great number of questions, and being prepared to look at the answers you receive in different ways.   Once you have gained insight into who your audience is and how they are likely to behave, the dividends this can pay you as an artist are massive. For a start your audience targeting efforts become much more successful.   For artists, the benefits can be success, connection, and growth. Knowing

john in 2024

Help Yourself With These 11 Powerful Music Marketing Secrets

When I say “11 Powerful Music Marketing Secrets” you might be forgiven for thinking “I bet they’re not powerful” and/or “I bet they’re not that secret”. True, you will have heard of most if not all of them. The secret is more, just how much power each one holds. The key to getting the most power from them is in using them together.   Music marketing is not a black art, no matter what musicians tend to think. It’s a set of skill that you can learn, but you won’t learn them without effor

john in 2024

Use Acoustic Treatments To Improve Your Recording Space

Hey   If you've ever recorded at home then you have had one or all of these experiences:   Soundproofing - Controlling sound IN or OUT External noise spilling onto your recording Performing or monitoring music and annoying neighbors or family members Sound Conditioning - Managing the characteristic response of your recording space The environment amplifies unwanted noise within your space Hot frequencies in you

john in 2024

Creating A New Mix Of “Sleep”, A Song Written By Mahesh

So, I’ve been using my studio to work on a track for Mahesh. It’s a track I love, called “Sleep”. Truly beautiful.   Re-arranging and producing a track for someone else is not something I often do these days. I do hope it sees the light of day as a release. Not that I have any expectation that it might not be released. Far from it. I fully expect it will be released, but you never be too sure. A song can seem to be working well and developing in a positive direction. But appeal can be

Follow for Follow is Killing Your Music

"Follow for follow" (often abbreviated as "F4F") is a tactic where individuals agree to follow each other on social media platforms with the hope of boosting their follower counts. It is often used, to the point of being highly damaging, by artists in the independent music scene. Without realising it, they are killing their own music.   Let me explain. While this strategy may seem tempting, especially for emerging artists looking to build a presence, it comes with a variety of drawback

john in 2023

What Could Happen To Pro Tools With The Rumoured Avid Sale?

You might have caught a whiff of the rumors about a take over at Avid by Francisco Partners.   The article below lays outs some examples and considerations of what it could mean for Avid products and ProTools users. Not the most positive about how they address the purchase.  There's so many aspects of the company and user types.   But, I expect that smaller industry users and indies might be effected, mostly by pricing.  Which worries me a bit.  I'm hoping that there will be som

Peggy in News

Is a User-Centric Model a Better Option for Musicians?

There's a lot of concern and frustration about how an artist is to make money on music platforms. Artists have been expressing their concerns and Industry giants say they have been "trying" to address the issues.  This article is an opinion piece. I think it does a pretty good job laying out some of the most glaring issues. Most specifically, the fraud occurring on their music platforms.     "We are willing to make the switch to a user-centric model if that’s what artists, songwriters,

Peggy in News

20 Reasons Why Music Forums Are Better For Songwriters, Bands And Producers Than Other Social Media

Modern social media is not ideal for many uses. This is especially true for bands and artists. From individual posts being missed and content you are interested in being buried beneath a pile of posts that you are not interested in, through a lack of people with suitable knowledge and skills, to not being able to find a vital piece of information posted 2 weeks ago and the lack of moderation making communicating frustrating, there's a long list of the shortcomings of modern social media.  

john in 2023

Brody B's "Eyes On Me" is a must-hear track from his debut album "The Kick Back."

As the second release from Brody Brown's debut album, "The Kick Back," "Eyes On Me" is a melodic uptempo track that is guaranteed to ignite the club scene. This captivating song has been making waves on DJs' playlists nationwide, leaving listeners enchanted by Brody's unique lyrical approach. Its infectious appeal makes it a favorite that keeps finding its way back onto repeat. Produced by the talented trio of Brody Brown, Point Guard, and M-Millz, "Eyes On Me" showcases their collaborative

Steph Hill in music


Hey Gang   At last. Connections all made in my studio, set up complete, about to start testing and ready to start room conditioning!   It’s even beginning to look kinda pretty…     I can’t wait. Testing should start tomorrow. Yay!   I’ll update you soon!

john in Studio

Superficial Review: Toontrack EZ Keys 2

Yesterday was a much anticipated day for me, with the release of Toontrack’s EZkeys 2 (EZK2), the sequel to (surprise) EZkeys, which was released back in 2012.  That's several lifetimes of normal product cycles, and it was for a long time thought that EZkeys had been abandoned by Toontrack. But the rumours of an update started towards the end of last year, and now the product is finally here. It is unquestionably a massive update, coming into line UI-wise and to an extent, functionality-wise wit

MisterB in Review

SSUK Music

Hey all   SSUK Music       SSUK runs playlists on Spotify, YouTube and Soundcloud.   Some playlists are genre based while others are inspired by a mood or an activity.   Please follow the SSUK account on each platform and where possible the individual playlists. Choosing a playlist helps support SSUK, meanwhile playing the songs supports the artists.   Besure to leave comments for SSUK staff, here or in reply to SSUK posts on thei

john in Music Blogs

Virtual Session Musicians

This first blog entry is being written just as we see an exciting new development in virtual vocalist tech, with the addition of rapping to Dreamtonic’s Synthesizer V, and on the eve of the release of Toontrack’s EZkeys2. Synthesizer V and EZkeys are two of the products I use in every production I do, and have not only allowed me to reveal my musical voice but also to write songs in record time. Since downloading Synthesizer V in August of 2022, I have co-written 9 vocal songs, handling the musi

Songwriting Challenges

Independent songwriters and music producers really miss out on the advantages gained by artists and songwriters through the songwriter and artist development activities within record labels and music publishers.  Within these activities songwriters, performers, artists and even producers will gain experience making them into more rounded artists, songwriters etc. They may collaborate, through songwriting camps, workshops or songwriting dates, or similar. The immediate aim might be to write

john in 2023

Moving Home, Moving Home Recording Studio

It’s typical. Just I am happy with my home studio, I have to strip it down and move the whole fecking thing. Grrr.   It had to be done so… just suck it up and get on with it, John. (Talking to myself in the 3rd person now too!)   Moving house can be a stressful time for anyone, especially if you are a musician and have to rebuild your home recording studio. It can feel like a daunting task, but with a little bit of planning and effort, you can have your new studio up

john in Studio

A Guide To Song Forms

A Guide To Song Forms Song Form, another way of saying Song Structure, is a useful way of understanding songs that are made up of a number of sections. There are a whole bunch of song forms. Some are quite broad ranging, others are strongly associated with specific genres.   Our article “A Guide to Song Forms - Song Form Overview“ gives you a good grounding in the basics of song structure. It also gives you links to in-depth guides on each song form including examples of that song

john in 2022

The Industry Pitch - A Short Monologue

"..Dear artist, lets get straight to the point. You NEED us because you will NEVER amount to anything on your own. You are just a small fish in an ocean of talent and you can quite literally be replaced over night. We have access to both the knowledge, tools, money, and the right relevant connections to shake things up, put you out there, and make things happen. Always remember that you are an inconsequential little spec of dust. Be thankful for our time and resources. Do as we tell you, when we

VoiceEx in Monologue

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