The music business is chock full of talents having the same dream of wanting to hit it big on the international platform. The reality is that only the most persistent and truly creative will emerge from the pack.
With that in mind, greater care and creativity should be exercised when investing in the creative industry, particularly music. Gone are the days when Jamaica was the only producer of reggae music– great offerings are now coming and dominating from nontraditional purveyors of the music and it is for this reason that artistes in Jamaica must now bring their ‘A’ game to the table if they want to earn a living from their passion.
With this in mind, my hope is that this article will provide a ‘push start’ for those of you who want to take your music from the recording studio to the worldwide stage.
Assuming that your music is of the highest quality, on par with international standards, your content is not offensive and is pleasing to the ear- it is time to think about international distribution!
I caught up with well-known music producer, Augustus ‘Gussie’ Clarke, CEO of Anchor Recording Studio who has a wealth of knowledge.
With your music ready to hit the market, Clarke said the first step is to find yourself an aggregator– a website or computer software that collects a specific type of information from multiple online sources.
If not, there is always the option of finding a distributor that offers music both online and in the physical form, for example, compact discs.
There is also the channel of making use of digital outlets like CD Baby, Amazon, iTunes and many other available options.
Another important aspect in marketing your music is researching the distribution platform you are going to use.
You must, however, consider that each distributor has its own requirement and genre of music it deems a priority. Clarke said thorough research should be done to ensure it’s the best musical outlet choice. Failure to do this may see your hard work tucked away in the background, while the main focus will be on the preferred genre being pushed on that platform.
Once you are satisfied, it is now time to ‘seal the deal’ and that is done via a contract which will stipulate the terms and conditions as well as method of payment.
Clarke, who has invested considerable time and energy in pushing his music products issued words of caution to those who are just about to launch. He advised of a key factor to consider is that everyday thousands of new recordings are being released and therefore the onus will be on the artiste to ensure he/she is engaging in active social media campaigns to promote both the music and his/her personal brand.
You must be persistent in getting your work across to fans and prospective ones near and far.
Last but not least, the business of music is not complete until you sign up with a music copyright entity and in Jamaica’s case it is JACAP– Jamaica Association of Composers, Authors And Publishers– this ensure the protection of your creative work.