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The Main Reason Why You Don't Have a Record Deal -
Skills: You can get mad and
storm off. You can get pissed and start to cry. You can
get angry enough to toss a pitcher of water in the faces
of the audition panelist. But no matter how heated you
may get, nothing will change that fact that you might
not be as talented as you think. All your life your
family and friends have said, "Wow! You're really
talented," and it has started to go to your head. You
could very well be the next J-Lo or Nelly, at least
according to your peeps, but if no one outside of your
support network has ever heard of you, you might be in
for a rude awakening.
The best way to test your
talent is to let other people critique it for you.
Believe me, a perfect stranger will tell you exactly
what others have been afraid to tell you all your life,
On the other hand, the
opposite may apply. If you got the got skills, strangers
will let you know with enthusiasm.
Exposure, exposure, and more
exposure is the key to measuring your talent. Whether
it's rapping or singing, or a little of both, you gotta
get out there and be seen and heard.
Take every opportunity to
perform, big or small, and show the musical world what
you have to offer. In addition, I suggest you obtain a
written evaluation of your talent from a reputable music
industry professional, and leave the rest up to luck.
Game Plan: Just like a football team has to
practice in order to win, so do you. At the beginning of
training camp, as the players arrive to the first
practice, each player is handed a playbook. This play
book is a detailed plan of action to guide the team to
its ultimate goal, success. Your play book doesn't have
to be quite as elaborate as the NFL's, just a simple
pencil and pad will do.
The entire concept of a game
plan is to map out where it is you want to be, and how
you're gonna get there. Start with the end product (the
goal) and then work your way backwards. List all of the
steps it may take to reach your goal, then right them
down in reverse order. Now, you have created a map of
your game plan, review it and make changes if necessary.
Then fold it up and tuck into your wallet, for easy
access, this way you can constantly remind yourself of
were your going and cross off where you've been.
Product: Face it, you wouldn't be too
impressive of a plumber if you didn't own an adjustable
wrench, and you certainly wouldn't be much of a clown
without the funny make-up. So what makes you think you'd
even have a snowball's chance in hell of succeeding in
the music business, if didn't have a demo.
Very few people have ever
gotten a record deal by bum rushing a record executive
at a night club or mall; even less have gotten a deal
via telepathy. Being that fate is not on your side, get
off the couch, put down the PlayStation and head out to
the nearest recording studio and record a demo.
You can usually find a good
recording studio listed in the Yellow Pages, trade
magazines, or on the Internet. Most if not all recording
studios have staff producers that can help you develop
your sound. Once the recording process has been
completed, its time to put together a press kit.
Start off by
putting three of your best songs on a CD; make sure that the
label has your name, the song titles, and contact number in plan
view. Next, you'll need a recent photo of yourself, or group,
with your contact information written on the bottom. Lastly,
you'll need an artist biography (resume) that highlights any
detailed information about yourself, including who you are,
where you're from, and where you want to go. Also include any
press write-ups or articles that may showcase your achievements.
Once you have gathered all of these items, stick them into a
nice little package. Make sure your package is professional and
unique enough to set you apart from everyone else.
About The Author: Sahpreem
A. King, Multi Platinum Record Producer, DJ, Music Consultant,
and Author of the book Gotta Get Signed How to Become a Hip Hop
Producer on Schirmer Trade Books.
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