Thursday, April 29, 2010

How to get more fans at your bands next show

How to get more fans at your bands next show

Have you been playing gigs and not getting anymore fans to your shows? Have you been searching the internet for an answer and they all say the same things that don’t work? Yes, get a myspace page, get a facebook page, send out e-mails, and call your friends. Here is some other stuff that no one ever tells you about.

Music- You need to have a band that is playing at least tolerable music. The music does not have to be great but it shouldn’t annoy anyone. As long as you are not annoying the heck out of everyone; the music is secondary.

Invite your friends- If you have not been inviting your friends to your show… START NOW.

Go To Other Shows- This is the most important thing. You should be going to at least one show of other local acts every week. Introduce yourself to the band, bring a hand bill for your next show and give it to each member of the band (we’ll get into hand bills in a second). Getting fans is no more then getting friends. Start off with the bands. Most local bands go see other local bands. If you make it a point to go to other local shows, well, they will come to yours.

Hand Bills- For each show print up 100-200 handbills. You should be able to fit four on a regular piece of paper. Print them up at home! Really cheap. Or bring them to Kincos. Go to a website that offers free digital pictures ( and use of of the public domain pictures. Download the picture to your computer and use it in your picture program. Then just place the text of you show on the bill; date, time, band name ETC.

Posters- Don’t go crazy with these. Three for each show are more then enough(make sure to put one at the club). Unless you are a known band already no one is going to see your poster and decide to go to your see your band.

Give away CDs- Wait, but you want to sell them. NO. NO you can’t. Give them away. If you spent 1000 bucks on a recording, then 1000 on printing CDs, Don’t give those away, sell those. However, you should print up 300 or more CDs with your home computer. You can get CDRs for very cheap today. For example when this article was written (4-28-2010) Staples has a spindle of 100 CDRs on sale for $14.98. So for 45 dollars you can have 300 CDs printed up. Now, these CDs are not fancy like factory created ones. You need to get creative. Decorate them with a sharpie or other ink. You will also need to put them in a case. NOT A JEWEL CASE. No no no, we are giving these CDs away. Take a piece of paper and cut it in half.. Now, fold it in half. This will be your CD sleeve. Put the CD inside it and staple the upper two corners. Blamo. You have a very cheap CD to give away. Make sure on this cover you have printed your band name web address and upcoming show. Go to a local show where a band is playing that sounds like yours. Go nuts and give away a bunch of free CDs.

How to hand out handbills and CDs-
NEVER just hand something to someone and walk away. You need to make a connection with them. If you don’t make a connection they will not care what you have to give them and you have just wasted your time. Talk to the person first. A good conversation starter “boy, this band is good” also, to make them at ease that you are not hitting on them (boy or girl) mention your significant other immediately some how in the conversation. Basically, you are trying to make a quick new friend that when you give them a CD they will not just toss it in the trash.

E-mail- Make sure you have an e-mail list. Follow this link for information on E-mail lists

Monday, April 26, 2010

How to Record Your Band for Under $300

What you need!

You are going to first need a band.

Location: You are going to need someplace to record it. A house or an apartment will do just fine. If you are in a house don’t do it in the unfinished basement or the garage. These two places normally have way to much natural reverb. If you can, record in a carpeted living room.

Interface: First you will need a digital interface to connect to your computer . If you don’t have a computer, welcome t the 20th century… and how are you reading this? You should buy a used interface with 4 inputs.

Audio Program: If you have a computer the next step is to download Audacity. It is the best free multi track recorder for your computer. You can find the download at

Mics: Next you will need a few mic. Get one USED Shure sm57s and two NEW MXL 990s. This set up will allow you to record your drums and all vocals and guitars/bass.


Order: You will need to record each instrument sepertely. Start with Drums, then bass, then guitar, last vocals. The guitar/bass order can be changed if needed but if at all possible drumds should be done first.

Mic Placement:
Drums: put one sm57 under the snare drum pointing up This mics only real purpose is to record the snare. The other two MXLs will be spread out over the set. Place one over the high hat about 2 feet over the high hat pointing down to between the high hat an dfirst cymbal. Place the other MXL almost right on top of the floor tom pointing up ever so slightly toward the other toms.

Guitar: use the sm57 up super close/ touching the amp. Place it on the corner of the speaker but angle it towards the center of the amp.

Bass: Use the SM57 as described above. Also run a direct line from your bass amp to the recording.

Voclas: Use the MXL 990. make sure you have a pop filer placed in front of the mic. If you don’t have one; a worn out sock, cut in half can be a nice do it yourself… but wash it first.

When mixing put the vocals panned to the center. Pan the snare drum slightly off to the right or left. Pan one MXL mic on the drums 70% left, the other 70% right. Bass, panned left or right a little; opposite of the snare. Guitar, copy the track twice in Audacity, move the track off time by Hundreths of a second. Pan one hard left one hard right.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Promote your band with E-mail

Make sure your band has an e-mail list. These are very useful for getting the word out for a show, that a new song available for download, or for asking with help moving a dead body. A few tips for making the most out of your mailing list.

Get a band e-mail account- Use G-mail or yahoo if you don’t already have another account. You should use . If the address is already taken, best to get a new band name. G-mail allows you to e-mail to 500 people a day but if you BCC about 20 in an e-mail. Anything over that and they disable your account from sending mail for 24 hours.

Collect E-mails- Start by putting all of your bands friends on the e-mail list. Make sure you ask their permission, no one likes spam. At every show you play make sure you have a clipboard with a “sign up for our mailing list sheet.” Don’t just put the clipboard on a table and leave it there; solicit people! How??? During your set make sure you tell people you have a list and they can sign up. If you have a cute friend; have them walk around while you are playing and ask people to sign up. Some people may not want to harass people into signing up BUT, if they don’t want to sign up, they won’t or will give you a fake address. You’ll know when you get the mailed returned as undeliverable.

Don’t e-mail to often- Don’t send an e-mail unless you actually have something to say. More then once a week is too much. And if you don’t have anything to say; once a week can be to often

Keep your list up to date- Make sure you delete people when you get a returned e-mail. Continuing to send to a disabled E-mail might make google/yahoo think you are sending spam and disable your account.

Formatting- make your e-mails short, too much information and people will stop reading. Always have a link to your web page at the bottom of the e-mail. If you are announcing a show make sure you include the venue name, time, cover change, address and a link to Google maps with the address for directions. Always say thank you!

5 quick DON’Ts- Don’t swear; don’t TALK IN ALL CAPS; don’t send 4 e-mails for the same show; Don’t allow people to see the other people’s email (use BCC); don’t forget to use spell check.

E-mail Example:
Hey Everyone,

has a show coming up on at the . The show starts at and is at the door. You must be . We will be playing with .

The venue is located at ,. If you need directions here is a link to the address on Google maps Make sure you put it on your calendar!!!

Again that’s, , on at,.

Thank you,

Saturday, April 17, 2010

new music board

you should take a look at

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