It's so easy to get discouraged these days about the state of the music industry.  My friends and I fall into this trap all the time.  We discuss how it's impossible to make money because our music is being stolen, or how labels aren't signing anyone over 23 and if you're one of the chosen, you're not being developed as an artist.  Essentially, you have a hit or you're done.  Then we complain that there is no more album music, where you can just drop the needle (yes I'm showing my age) and listen all the way through.  We bitch and complain about technology and how it's killed us as musicians and destroyed the musicianship of the new generation.  We talk and talk and talk and never see the truth.  The world changes and music changes with it.  Those that don't adapt, go away.
        Does this mean that we shouldn't strive for classic excellence in our writings and recordings?  Of course not.  All it really means is that the way people consume music today is different and we must deliver it in a way that they can understand and appreciate.  We must cater to the fact that initially, we have very little time to capture a listeners attention.  In a very practical sense I interpret this as putting your best foot forward first and be quick about it.  Hopefully, this will entice your new fan to listen further to your more...unconventional pieces of music.
        There's more good news to consider in the new economy of music.  We can be our own record label!  It's become much less expensive to create professional recordings.  This has meant that there is much more good music out there to be consumed.  Don't believe me?  Go on myspace and check out the indie bands from around the world and get back to me, I think you'll be surprised.  By the way,  in case you didn't catch that, we can easily find bands from all around the world...and they can find us.  
        So now we've discovered that we can cheaply create professional music and cheaply deliver it to consumers around the world, but what about marketing?  For that we have the dreaded social media.  Now, I can here the arguments as I type...I hate having to post...it doesn't work...people criticize...etc, ad al, ad nauseum.  That's fine, but while we complain, those who embrace social media and know how to use it effectively are getting very cheap if not free marketing and are getting rich (or at least making a living) as a musician.  
        I am not saying I have all the answers here.  In fact, I have a whole lot to learn on the subject.  I'm just saying that there are reasons for musicians to be optimistic in this new age of computer downloads.  As I learn any tricks of this trade I will gladly share them...and feel free to do the same for me.  I love advice.
                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                        - Jeff Phillips
 
 
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    Jeff Phillips

    singer/songwriter/guitarist/
    poet/voice-over artist/
    eternal optimist

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