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Guitar intonation: how to keep your guitar in tune

adjusting guitar intonationGuitars use what is known as an equally tempered scale. The guitar’s tempered scale is a compromise and doesn’t result in 100% precise tuning or intervals between notes. Since guitars have this inherent weakness when it comes to being in tune, it’s important to develop a basic understanding of guitar intonation and adjustments to get the best performance out of your instrument. Read More

AllYouNeedIsLoveJust because 4/4 is an easy and popular time signature in which to write, it doesn’t mean it’s always the best choice for you and your music. Many highly successful songs have been written using time signatures that don’t strictly adhere to the standard one-and-TWO-and-three-and-FOUR-and vibe. Here are a handful of examples of music written in different time signatures — and tips on how playing with the meter of your own music can help you get it to the highest level. Read more.

record-store-day It’s official! Now that we’re back in the vinyl LP game, it’s only natural that we’d be the official vinyl pressing sponsor of Record Store Day, a celebration of the enduring importance and coolness of the independent record store, held on the third Saturday of April every year. Read more.

make better recordingsThe moment I was first introduced to computer-based recording, I saw the potential for recording millions of takes. At first it made sense to me to just record as much as you can and then pick the best takes later. But over the years I have come to realize how much of a hindrance this philosophy was, rather than a help. Read more.

Ben Sword talks YouTube buttonsBen Sword, founder and head of MusicMarketing.com brings us what he calls “the most exciting new feature in the history of YouTube features.” Now you can add an active link to your website in your video. Your video plays, a button pops up, and viewers can click on it and land on your website. That’s a pretty awesome way to increase traffic and interaction with new and existing fans. Read more.

Email marketing tipsYour email list is yours to keep. Social sites have come and gone or fallen out of favor over time. And social sites usually aren’t as good at getting people to take action, so if you want ticket sales and CD purchases, you should start building your list. Now that we know why you need a mailing list, let’s look at six ways you can increase your subscriber count. Read more.

Rearrange your live song intros to improve your showsA good intro will set up what is going to happen next. With most artists and most songs, it’s one of the first parts of a song I need to rearrange. We want to capture and engage the audience, make sure people are with you. I use the analogy of a mother hen gathering her chicks, making sure they are with her and together before she crosses the street, rather than just taking off and hoping they follow. Read more.

CD release tipsIf you’re sitting down to tackle making an album, there’s a lot to think about; from clearing the rights for your cover songs to converting the cover art to the right format. When you get your manufactured CDs in hand, there are still a lot of things you need to do – namely, releasing the album for sale to the public. While your music is at the heart of what you do, your identity, image, brand, website, web presence, merchandise, and publicity is what you use to connect with your fans. Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan have revised our popular Planning Your Album From Beginning To End guide. Here’s an excerpt from the revised guide. Read more.

Music marketing key performance indicatorsMost success stories don’t happen overnight. To keep you on a long term path towards reaching your goals as a musician, you should have several ways to gauge your progress. I call them key performance indicators (KPIs), and they provide a way to measure your performance and the growth of your music career and music marketing efforts. Read more.

Songwriting tips from Ben CampIn Part 2 of our interview, songwriter Ben Camp shares his perspectives on the art and craft of songwriting, including methods he uses to develop compelling song ideas. He expands on his thoughts about the importance of co-writing and why he believes it’s essential to build a network of talented collaborators while pointing out some of the common mistakes aspiring songwriters often make. Read more.

Travel tips for musicians Traveling can bring excitement to your life, and it can bring stress and upheaval, as well. Even when I’m not touring for my music, when I head to the hills for a month, I know how to make all systems go with as little as possible. Here are four simple travel tips to help you endure life on the road without feeling like roadkill. Read more.

Owning the crowd: music performance tips from the “One Man Sideshow”

by Michael Gallant August 21, 2014

Owning the crowd - tips from David Darwin You might have great songs and finely-honed chops, but engaging an audience from the moment you walk on stage until the moment your last note fades is another skill entirely. Here are tips from David Darwin (AKA The One Man Sideshow) for indie artists on what to do before, between, and during songs to make your entire music performance as powerful as your individual songs might already be. Read more.

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The road to becoming a successful songwriter

by Keith Hatschek August 19, 2014

Successful songwriter Ben CampBen Camp interview, Part 1. “Doubt is part of the creative process. Even people who are at the top of the songwriting game today struggle with the process. [One hit songwriter I know] has said that he’ll come up with 100 different melodies to find the one that sticks. So it’s essential to not be afraid to throw out those hundred until you hit on one that lights you up on the inside and you know, ‘Wow, that’s it!’” Read more.

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Choosing the right audio interface for your home studio

by Dan Gonzalez August 15, 2014

audio interface input connections If you’re preparing to set up a home recording studio, this article can help you better understand some of the basic elements regarding the audio interface with your computer or DAW. These concepts can get very complex, but this post will focus on some of the more basic points about the subject. Here are nine questions you should ask when comparing audio interface options. Read more.

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Crossing the border to the Great White North: a musician’s guide

by Molly Nagel-Driessen August 12, 2014

playing music gigs in Canada Playing music gigs in Canada just got easier thanks to a new law, but crossing the border with your instrument still requires preparation and organization. If you’re planning a trip to play music gigs in Canada, here’s some advice and a few online resources to help make your border crossing smooth and easy. Read more.

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Planning your album: get permission for art, text, and cover songs

by Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan August 11, 2014

planning your album guide Before we can mass produce copies of your disc, there are a few legal issues to clear first. You are required to sign a release form declaring that all the music on your album is original and “owned” by you. If all your music is original, you’ll check that box and move on. However, if you record any cover songs or incorporate any copyrighted samples or loops, you have to provide proof that you received the proper permissions. Read more.

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