In the meantime my CD was out and I had it registered with Socan, Music BC, and The Canadian Songwriting Association, and subscribed to their magazines. I thought if I wanted to get anywhere with all this I needed to throw myself right into it and keep up to date with the latest buzz. I’ve created profiles on both Socan and The Canadian Songwriting Association. My feelings about the effect of it are mixed. While there was no immediate benefit, the opportunity is there if you have time to utilize it. You are kept in the loop, you know what is happening at any moment in your city or the country, and if you got time and money to travel and mingle you will sooner or later gain some contact, some gig or such. If you are willing to schmooze there is some paid as well as free events organized by the Music BC, and similarly in other provinces. For me so far it hasn’t worked. The events I wanted to sign up (a few of them) didn’t work because of the time and location. Having to work daytime, half the day is out, the rest was usually a question of should I work on my new song or spend the evening schmoozing. I always chose the new song. At least I got a couple hundred songs in the last 4 years! I’m not good at schmoozing anyways. I believe that a musician should be able to either hire someone to do it for them – if he or she has means for it, or to get into an agreement with a PR or a music manager, label or similar. Plus, I don’t believe in having to go around and beg people to listen to my CD or check out my Facebook page. And that is a big problem in general.
Back to my first statement at the top of this article, if your song is on TV you don’t have to do much to get it heard. If people like it they will reach for it anyway. To this day I hate begging people to turn their heads and stop and listen. Do we ever do that on the street? No, and most likely most people would just pass you by if you did. I ignore all requests like “check out my CD”, or “Listen to my new song”, even when they are given for free, especially then, because I believe that giving it for free diminishes the value of the work, plus I don’t want to support giving the art away. Hence this series of blog posts. However, if the artist intrigues me with some content on his / her profile I will make time to check the music, and even keep up to date with what’s happening with it.
Aside from registering the music with Socan, which should be done by default, the magazines have been the most important benefit from getting into the Music Associations so far. The gear updates, software and hardware updates, events, festival information, competitions, songwriting techniques and analysis, gig experiences, music business info etc. they are all things that you might benefit from at any point in your journey. I keep all the magazines still, as I haven’t read them all front to back yet, but I’m hoping I will get back to them sooner or later. Usually to leaf through them to get the sense of the overall, and read the main articles it takes me about 30-45 minutes. Add to that about 1.5 hours of social media updates (there is many more sites that I will talk about later), that is minimum 2 hours a day spent on creating your online presence. Usually, that is way too much than I feel I should be doing. As the time goes by, I’m spending less and less time on it, simply because I don’t see the results that would make it worthwhile.
To be continued...