NZ Music Industry Q&A
(from Erakah's view)
Q.I keep getting turned down every time I send out my demo.
Don't give up, keep writing and meeting new people. Remember that it's also being in the right place at the right time - look at how Justin Bieber rose to fame, he kept posting vids on the net but the main thing is that he believed in himself more than what anyone could ever believe for him. The perfect time will come and you can then look back on the hard road you took to get to your amazing career.
Q.When i get given a contract what should i do?
A.First of all YOU read over it, chances are unless you're a music lawyer you won't understand the bulk of it. It's all big words that unless it's read by someone who understands the terms you may get trapped. So GET A MUSIC LAWYER TO LOOK OVER IT. Sometimes they are expensive, but is absolutely needed as when you sign a contract you are signing your life's career direction and management for how ever long is stated.
Think wisely about it, you dont need to rush into a contract signing. From experience - if someone is rushing you to sign a music contract there is usually a hidden agenda, if they want you in their label - they can wait until you have had legal look over it and until you understand it. If you are not completely happy with what they are offering you, you may be able to change or add some clauses in your contract.
Q.If someone approaches me and offers me a place in their label what should i do?
A.Take your time, get to know the label and their team. Go to some of their gigs and get backstage to see how they treat their other artists.
Ask the other artists how the label treats them - theres nothing sneaky about getting info on who your signing your life over to!.
Google the label name - see their track record of past artists - usually when an artist who is under them has done good in their career -chances are you will to! Just trust your instincts and if you get it wrong it's ok, that's just added experience.
Q.Can i earn $ in NZ from my music?
A.Definately - for some its a slow start for others its fast. I've found in the NZ music industry its definately not as simple as 'you get out what you put in'. You can put in years of work and not they the 'big break' you were hoping for, but just liek anything perseverance is the key. Also remember that a humble approach is needed and you may put a $ on what you know you are worth, but in reality you need to build up your name, get noticed in the music industry and be seen. In the beginning $ will be little, but as you are more known, your tracks are released, you do more shows to get your name and style out there - you will get more $.
Yyou may not know that alot of music artists in NZ also have jobs to help out with the $...and you wonder why alot of music artists move overseas? - I'ts because the music industry in terms of performance pay, gig opportunities, major label signings and overall 'being noticed' is at time bigger in bigger countries...obviously.
Q.How can i protect my lyrics and music that i write for someone/myself?
A. Click on the pic to jump on the website and read up on how you can as an artist in NZ protect your original works, and earn $ through you're live performances and digital releases.
The Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) collects and distributes licence fees for the public performance and communication of our members' musical works. The Australasian Mechanical Copyright Owners Society (AMCOS) collects and distributes mechanical royalties for the reproduction of our members' musical works.
Q.Do i have to change my appearance, weight, dress style when i get a record deal.
A. This is a tricky one as so many people are so p/c nowadays, but i'll put it to you this way - You perform your best when you are personally feeling your best! Only you know what that is and if you are setting yourself goals to get better at what you do, pushing the limits, being healthy for yourself, then you're algoods!
I do however believe that being told you have to go on a strict regime or diet to lose 20kg even though you are a healthy weight for your age/height is just #$%&, but that will be between you and your label and you will quickly learn to voice your opinion.
Keep in mind the industry your'e getting into and learn the trends, theres nothing wrong with getting a nudge in the right direction to better yourself, - dressing up / having alter egos and putting on a show is all part of the fun! and seriously it's part of the job, so embrace it.
Q.How do i find a good producer to help me with my songs?
A.Sometimes you have to be in the 'know' of who is who and what is what, some people wont be willing to pass you the details of their producer, but then some producers are solely working for a label and due to contractual issues can't do work for you unless you're part of that label.
If you aren't signed yet heres what does work, it's quick simple and sometimes you find amazing un-discovered producers just wanting the chance to show what they can do just like you!
Use FACEBOOK! put into your status that you are looking for producers/beatmakers and see who pops up, jump on CHAT or TWITTER or google 'keyword producers'. On-line media tools are the best nowadays.....but then comes the part of how much you think you should be charged for a beat, read below.
Q.How much should i be charged for a beat?
A.This is when you have to use your noggin, when you could either get it right or so, so wrong.
If the beatmaker is also a great producer then try cut a deal where they can do the beat, record/produce, mix then hopefully master. You could pay $ for the whole deal and own the beat and everything, or you could pay some $ and split the APRA share.
You will have to talk it over with the person your'e dealing with, but if your'e unsure click here and ask me questions, i will not get involved personally, but i will advise you best i can.