Life's Conductors

**Guest Post by Bret Alexander of The Badlees and Saturation Acres.


"This week I finally got around to watching the Steve Jobs movie. He was a complicated man for sure. It wasn’t the most feel good film I have ever watched. But I must say there were several scenes that apply to many of the things I try and discuss in this music blog. I was surprised how much Steve Jobs referenced musicians when talking about his quest to democratize the computer. It was pretty cool..."

The Lazy Way To Sell Music Online

**Guest post written by Corey Koehler, an indie singer-songwriter from Minnesota, as featured in his blog


"Here’s the good news: These days if you want to sell music online it is pretty damn easy. You find a nice music distribution service, upload your songs and BAM… you are worldwide. Your music is blasted out all over the world in less than an hour. Here's the bummer..."

How To Create a Perfect Page to Sell Music on Your Website

**Guest post written by Melanie Kealey of


"What is key to a great music website? An engaging, easy to scan, music page, with lots of songs to listen to. It should reflect who you are as a musician, and offer lots of options for your listeners in an organized way."

Recording At Home: Taking A Song From Demo To #1

**Guest post written by Clay Mills, hit songwriter, producer, performer, and founder of


"People often ask me if they have to do full-production demos to present songs to publishers or major artists? I do a fair amount of full demos, but I also have had about half of my major cuts from pitching home demos done on a very basic set-up on my mac laptop..."

10 Ways to Look Like an Amateur Musician

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of and Independent Musician, as featured on


"We’ve been working on this list for a while and thought it was high time to share it. Keep in mind that this post is primarily for the working musician..."

Performing Rights, Simplified P1: The Basics

**Guest post written by Brian Penick as featured on the SOUNDSTR Blog.


"There are a LOT of misconceptions about this part [performing rights] of the music industry. “What are performing rights fees? Aren’t performing rights just for cover bands? You have to be popular to make money from them, right? Where does this check in my mailbox come from and why am I receiving it?” These are all common questions from songwriters...We’re here to set the record straight, once and for all. What you might not know could be holding back your career and keeping you from collecting royalties you have earned."

5 Things Musicians can Blog About to Get Targeted Website Traffic

**Guest post written by Nicholas Rubright of Dozmia.


"Even if your website is well optimized for search engines, it’s unlikely that people who have never heard of you are going to specifically search for you or your website. Because of this, the best way to generate new, well targeted website traffic is to start blogging...Here are some topics you can blog about that can help drive more organic, relevant traffic to your website."

How to use Radio & Music Blogs to Promote Your Tour

**Guest post written by Michael Corcoran of musicSUBMIT.


"It’s best to start promoting before you hit the road, but if you’ve already departed for the first town, you can still find ways to promote the very next show and increase your chances of a successful tour...Here’s one secret: Invite the local music industry folks to come out to your shows...Here’s what you do:"

[Free eBook] 23 Ways Musicians Can Make Money

**Guest post written by


"One of the biggest challenges facing musicians is generating income. Although sales of recorded music have dropped significantly, there are many new sources of income available to musicians. Bandzoogle have put together a free eBook called “23 Ways Musicians Can Make Money” to help musicians and bands find ways to generate more money for their careers."

Earning Royalties For Your Music

**Guest post written by Katie Lott, Songwriting & Voice Coach, as featured in her blog Modern Songstress.


"So what the heck are royalties, and how do you get them? Royalties are fees that are paid to the composer (that’s you!) every time a song is played anywhere: radio, live venues, TV, satellite radio, internet radio, streaming services, etc."


**Music Director and guitarist for Kenny Babyface Edmonds, composer, artist and author of: The Career Guitarist.


"1) What does the term "Career Guitarist" mean? Typically when speaking of a musician who solely earns their money from music, we refer to them as a professional musician. I just simplified it and coined the phrase Career Musician, then narrowed that down to Career Guitarist which is the embodiment of what I’ve done throughout my career in the music industry, which includes..." 

Why I Don’t Use Reverbnation FanReach For Email Marketing

**Guest post written by Corey Koehler, an indie singer-songwriter from Minnesota, as featured in his blog


"It is not a bad place to network with other musicians. They have a few decent tools. And its nice to have some links back to my website and other social media properties. If you are just starting out and testing the waters, you could do a lot worse. But if you want to get serious about marketing online, building your fan base, and growing your music career, you should be thinking beyond ReverbNation. Especially when it comes to your email marketing."

5 Things Songwriters Need to Know About the Consent Decree

**Guest post written by Brian Penick as featured on the SOUNDSTR Blog.


"What is the Consent Decree, and why are people talking (and so upset!) about it?...For songwriters, one of the least discussed (yet most important topics) is music licensing. But major changes to the consent decree – the federal agreement that governs how ASCAP and BMI operate – is bringing this topic to the surface. The truth is, these changes could be the biggest in the music industry in 75 years and greatly impact your career."

Hashtags 101: How to Use Them & Why They Matter

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of and Independent Musician, as featured on


"What’s the deal with hashtags? Some of us have never hated the pound (#) sign more than we do right this minute. Some of us love it! Still others of us have no clue what it means or how it’s used in the world of social media. Well today we are going to explore the hashtag. Think of this as Hashtag 101!"

If You Aren’t Using Facebook Video You Will Miss Out

**Guest post written by Andrew Jones of Checkered Owl Media.


"I’ve been meaning to write a blog for a while about how CRITICAL video is becoming to Facebook, but this week I read 3 important pieces of news confirming that Facebook is going full focus on video, so it’s time to actually get this out. I’ll keep it fairly tight, but, if it’s going to get TLDR (Too Long; Didn't Read) for you let’s make this super clear, if you want to be successful at social media moving forward Facebook video better be a part of your plans..."

What's Your Story?

**Guest Post by Bret Alexander of The Badlees and Saturation Acres.


"I have always said that the best way to break up a band is to make a record. I’ve seen it a hundred times. A bunch of guys have a rock and roll dream. The band gets all excited and starts diligently writing songs. They save up some money...Then, they do the recording. Then, they put together the artwork. Then, they plan the release party. Then……. About two weeks or so after the release party the phone calls start coming in. The band is depressed. At this point they ask the question that whole empires have risen and fallen on: Now what?"

5 Reasons Why Vinyl Is Definitely Better

**Guest post written by Jessica Kane, a music connoisseur and an avid record collector. She currently writes for SoundStage Direct, her go-to place for all turntables and vinyl equipment, including VPI Classic.


"The modern musical industry may be almost entirely digital, but this does not mean that streaming songs or downloading audio files is the best way to listen to music. Though they are not the main method of experiencing music anymore, vinyl album sales actually continue to grow, and modern vinyl sales levels have not been this high since 1988. Audiophiles might insist that vinyl is better because it sounds nicer, but there are also several other reasons why it is the superior format..."

How to Open For Nationally Touring Artists

**Guest post written by Joy Ike, creator of and Independent Musician, as featured on


"Nailing big opportunities is one of the major things that kickstarts the career of an independent artist. Sometimes it’s having a video go viral. Other times it’s falling under the good graces of someone who knows someone. But sometimes it’s getting to open for a national touring act and getting your name out to a larger audience of new are 7 excellent tips for making it happen."

4 Tips For DIY Drum Recording

**Guest Post by Mahea Lee of Soundfly.


"For many musicians, the idea of recording a demo can seem a bit daunting, especially when taking a do-it-yourself approach. Fortunately for those of us who need a bit of guidance, Black Lodge Recording’s Vishal Nayak has helped the Soundfly team create a brand new course, full of tips for efficient, effective, and stress-free demo production."

The Tyranny of the Primal Ear

**Guest Post by Bret Alexander of The Badlees and Saturation Acres.


"Over the past few months, I have written several entries about diversification in the music business. You have to be able to do it all to keep your calendar full. Write, play, record, teach, etc, etc…… it takes a wide array of skills to fill your calendar these days. But here is the rub: Once the calendar is full, that’s when the real soul searching begins. Ironically, the real gold is in being a samurai at something. That’s how you get to the next level. A master of one, not a master of none."

How To Make A Music Video On A Tiny Budget

**Guest post written by Ari Herstand. It originally appeared on Ari's Take.


"I just released a music video. It cost me exactly $0 to make and it looks pretty darn awesome if I do say so myself. Well, I can say so because I didn't make it. I kind of had nothing to do with it - other than writing and recording the song of course (and showing up and shooting the thing). So how did this happen?"

What I Got Paid in 2015

**Guest Post by Max Garcia Conover, modern folk singer-songwriter out of Portland, ME.


"i just did the taxes for my first year as a full-time independent songwriter and i wanted to share some details about the business side of the work i’m here’s me...taking some pride in humble, honest, hard-won earnings:"

Why social media is DEAD for music marketing (and why email works)

**Guest Post by Paul Loeb, founder and CEO of No Ego Records and DropTrack. Originally featured on The DIY Musician.


"It’s hard to believe it’s been over 12 years since the launch of Facebook. Love it or hate it, social media is here to stay. That’s good news for marketers, musicians, and entrepreneurs. You have this incredible platform to reach every one of those followers you painstakingly cultivated. Or do you?"

TuneCore Asks Songwriters To Sign Up For Spotify Settlement Without Disclosing Terms

**Guest Post by David Lowery, frontman from Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven. Originally featured in The Trichordist.


"If you are a Tunecore songwriter, you recently got an email asking you to sign up for the NMPA/Harry Fox Agency/Spotify settlement. Songwriters are directed to [a] Survey Monkey form. This is it. No details. Nothing. Nada. In particular, there is no mention of the possible statutory damages that songwriters are waiving by opting in to this..."

Here are some tips and tricks I learned while touring the country (DIY) as a singer-songwriter/duo

**Guest Post by Ezekiel Morphis, San Diego based Americana/Folk Singer-Songwriter.


"If you just started playing music last week, this article will aid you further down the road as long as you stay committed and work on your music first. If you are like me — two EPs completed, well practiced, working on an album, playing for a handful of years, don’t mind smelling like beer and shame for days on end and still want to know how to tour DIY — then this is the article for you."