I have to say, its really lovely to be able to make progress!
It has become very clear that finishing the EP was the main roadblock to me kicking off this whole solo venture. Now that it is in the bag there are so many things to be done and its a nice feeling to be able to finally just get on with it. That being said; I would be lying if I said I wasn’t feeling very daunted by just how many aspects to being an independent, self-contained musician there are.
Firstly though, this is what I have been up to in the last couple of weeks.
Dancing By The Side Of The Road has now been made available for pre-order through Bandcamp. After doing a lot of research I decided that at this stage of my journey they are the best and most simple distribution platform to use. Unlike some distribution sites they are very much geared towards the artists themselves and are very user friendly. While it would be lovely to have the EP streaming on Spotify, Amazon etc, I would rather try and see how many people are willing to buy my music for now. I am aware that there is a big debate online going on about whether or not independent, unsigned artists should charge or not, but I believe I’ve worked hard on my music and its worth getting a little something back. The 4 track EP is only £3 which I think is a fair price. I’ve been humbled and extremely pleased with the pre-orders I’ve received so far. To make some money, however little, out of something I have created myself is an unbeatable feeling.
As you may have noticed, I have consolidated this blog with all my other musical online presence. The Making Of A Musician is no more, and instead this is now my official website at http://www.matthewreynoldsmusic.com. In order to get the domain and remove the adverts from this site, I re-invested the money I have earned from EP pre-orders. See, it was worth charging! Any money I make from my original music at the moment will go back into making the project even better.
I also used a little of the money to experiment with paying for a sponsored Facebook post about my pre-order this weekend. I only ran the advert for 3 days, and was pretty disappointed with the results. Despite Facebook’s quote of ‘4,000-9,000 people seeing your post’, at the end of the promotion under 400 people had seen it, and only 4 people had engaged with it. I have since done some research and discovered many articles detailing why you shouldn’t bother with boosting posts. Oh well, another (fairly obvious) lesson learned – do your reasearch before taking action!
This coming Sunday I am shooting the majority of footage for the music video to Carousel. I have a good number of friends and musical acquaintances who are getting involved so it should be a lot of fun. My only worry is the weather holding up, as it’s a largely outdoor shoot. I’ll be storyboarding it on Wednesday to make sure I know exactly what I want from it.
So, once the music video is released, things get tricky.
From there on out it’s all about promotion. And I have to admit that as far as anything outside of the making of music is concerned; I’m still a total novice. The sheer amount of logistics and things I have to do are mind boggling and overwhelming, and I don’t know who to trust and who to avoid. I don’t know which online radio stations will play my music, who will host my music video etc. Its a minefield. And at present; I’m not in a financial position to pay for promotional services. I guess its time to call upon my more successful local peers for advice!