Hey there. I’m Jon of the Shred, and this is my first blog post on Massbands.org
I figured for the first article, I’d give you some helpful tips on promoting yourself online, and how to work on your web presence. Feel free to e-mail me any question or requests for future posts, I plan on doing a monthly music advice column so drop some insight!
SHRED BLOG #1: ONLINE PRESENCE AS A MUSICIAN
Ah, the coveted online presence of a musician. Arguably, a far more useful tool in this day and age than a record deal, your online presence can MAKE or BREAK the advancement of your career. As a self-employed musician myself (aka unemployed), I will show you some of the tricks I’ve used to build a formidable web presence.
Facebook + Graphics
One of the coolest features for Facebook pages is the cover. It gives you the chance to display character and a unique flavor to entice people seeing your page for the first time. If you check out the website I built for my Jon of the Shred and Sweet Funky Freedom pages, you will see the custom design I made to introduce new fans to something different.
Jon of the Shred
Sweet Funky Freedom
Spend a couple hours designing the cover, I mean put some REAL effort into it – the goal is, you want to show your friends, fans, and family some love with a nicely designed cover on Facebook. Don’t have the dough to drop on Photoshop? Easy…get Gimp and Paint.net, two awesome freeware programs for graphic design! Then scour google for Gimp brushes, watch a few Youtube tutorials, and you’ll be making your own album art and designing your own website in no time!
Soundcloud + Cloud Killers
Soundcloud is a phenomenal website to host your tracks to showcase to the world. (Did you know there’s a Soundcloud App on Facebook, by the way, to get a playlist tab in your Facebook pages? Look it up!) When I first started using Soundcloud, I loved the ability of putting a slick looking player on the walls of music groups to generate hits on my new, prized track. But the comments just weren’t rolling in….
Enter Cloud Killers. This site is a great way to both discover new music, find artists to collaborate with through the internet, AND earn points and luck towards YOUR OWN amount of monthly, weekly, and even DAILY comment intake. Check it out, you will not be disappointed! This site helps immensely, just check out the track I updated TWO DAYS ago and have over 300 comments on.
Headliner.fm is a cross-promotional tool aimed at labels and artists. The system is based on “Band Bucks” – the more fans you have, the more you earn when you promote another band. (Fans are calculated from linked Twitter, Myspace, and Facebook accounts.)
I’ve found TWO crucial ways to get hits on this site:
1) Offer some free sh!t -Be it a live CD on archive.org, or a set of production tools for hip hop artists and electronic producers, or even a new single for free download…free = more hits! Share your music, and advertise the fact you are giving them a free track! The fans will appreciate that!
2) Witty, humorous advertising – When I’m advertising for Jon of the Shred, I like to go overboard with hyperbole and sarcasm.
“The latest Jon of the Shred tracks gave Chuck Norris a concussion, sterilized Justin Beiber and melted the Predators face off.” (Link)
I don’t know about you, but I’d click THAT link.
Get YOUR music on Itunes, Spotify and Amazon!
To get one’s music on I-Tunes, Spotify, and Amazon, they must FIRST face SE7EN TRIALS of UNRELENTING TERROR. First, a journey through the FOREST OF THE IMPALED. Then…..
Just kidding. All you need to do it sign up with a site like Routenote.com. Your album will go through quality checks for each separate website (Amazon, Itunes, and Spotify) and you can expect to see them in a few months, the latest. Once they’re up, its your job to promote your own product to get the sales!
(Note: Routenote lets you take 85% of your earnings in exchange for free service. Alternatives cost instant cash.)
An online presence is essential to a musicians career. Stay hungry, stay driven, continue to strive for your goals and push yourself into new realms of expertise, both in your musical craft, your sound engineering abilities, and your promotional charisma. But most of all, spread YOUR own unique message and signature sound of music – make sure every song you write is your best song by constantly trying to top your last production. You’ll be churning out tracks like “Symphony X – The Odyssey” in no time!
– Jon of the Shred
Atomics is simply grunge, stoner, doom-metal at it’s best! From the first track “Wanting” to the last track “Toast”, you will be wanting more. “Wanting” kicks in with an intense crisp guitar crank, that sure was recorded at high octane decibel levels. The vocal harmonies are just surreal! The second track rocks and reminds me of old school Helmet, or early Soundgarden. Atomics is sure an album to be reckoned with! These truly are songs about Satan, the gods, nuclear war, aliens and space battles! I love it when the song “Atomics” comes in, it’s just an exhilarating experience! Also, “Space Duel” just absolutely rocks! I liked it the first time I heard it! Just like this band, I liked them the first time I heard them. Sometimes you just hear a band and you are instantly hooked! I don’t know how else to explain it.
Atomics is one of the best albums I’ve heard this year, and it’s September. I’ve always been a fan of Problem With Dragons, ever since the first day I heard them. “Failures” is just riveting . Infinite variables. I wish I had a lyric sheet as I’ve always been bad at deciphering super awesome lyrics. The album closes with “Toast”. “Ours is not to question/Ours is not to understand/Gods in the sky/Birdmen/ Flaming chariots…”, goes the lyrics for “Toast”. Such an infinite schism from the pop culture. I love it! This is just an epic album. Kudos to our friends, Problem With Dragons! I hope to get on a few more shows with these blokes. We played at the Tavern in Framingham together back in April on the 28th with our buddies in Problem With Dragons. Hopefully we will do some more shows together. The world is your oyster!