To start, please bust me if I use the words "platform", "paradigm", "suite of tools" or "Digital frontier" anywhere in this post.
I have been working hard with my partners at Aderra to develop a platform for emerging artists to begin to grow to the point where they have a sustainable career. I have studied a number of music tech companies by doing my own digging on the web, talking to fans and users of these sites as well as going to music conferences to take in what these companies are doing. The one key, overarching theme I hear from music companies is their struggle to monetize music in some way. Sometimes it is because they simply charge to little, sometimes their business model is too dependent on excessive licensing or royalty agreements with record labels (and sometimes they just have bad ideas.) Staring out at the new digital frontier I began to realize that we were doing something inherently different than most music tech startups. Almost all of the other companies were built on the premise that the internet was the be all/end all for music in the future. For us at Aderra the web plays a role in marketing and fan out reach but
the foundation of our business is built in the first row of a live show, side by side with sweaty fans. We're not trapped in cyberspace trying to find pieces of pennies.We're trying to create a new paradigm outside of the traditional label-artist relationship with value placed on THE FANS, THE MUSIC and THE ARTIST and our top-notch world class service to all three. These three are the pillars of our buisness. So I try to view our decisions through the FANS, MUSIC, ARTIST prism.
The old record label system is broken because at every point it is ignoring or even working against one of the three pillars of FANS, MUSIC and ARTIST.I could probably rail on at length about this but I will save it for another post.
Because as it says in the subject line, I am looking for Unsigned Acts to go on tour. Not only that:
We'll release your music, double your merch sales and triple your fan base.
But you have to meet a few criteria:
- You have to be striving to create timeless music.
- You have to put on great performances of your great songs.
- I don't care how many plays you've had on MySpace.
- I do care show many shows you played last year that were more than 100 miles from your house.
- We won't release CDs. They are for dinosuars. Don't expect any shiny discs.
- I will give your music away for free if it makes sense for your fans.
- Work ethic - needless to say you have to be ridiculously committed to your own art if you expect me or anyone else to support it.
- You have to be actively engaged in social networking to connect with your fans. (You do have all of their mobile phone numbers, right?).
If this sounds like you, send me a song or two. Make sure I know what your email address is. Don't send me pictures or bios or reviews or any other crap. I will find it on your website. If you are playing near L.A. any time soon invite me to a show.
We have created a suite of tools that we can use to help you reach these goals:
- Find more fans. It is all about your fans.
- No Day job. Music is a sustainable career for you.
- Give you the time and resources to create great art.
Our music submission address is: firstname.lastname@example.org