A blog about songwriting and about the songwriter Luigi Cappel

Posts tagged ‘epk’

Take lots of photos of you and your band

You never know when a photo will be useful. It might be photos for your tracks, an album cover, photos for your bio or web page.

Many web sites where you post your music, like MySpace for example, let you post photos with your tracks and so many people use the one photo for all tracks, which is boring. Boring reduces interest value.

If it’s a photo for your Press Kit or EPK, I recommend that unless you have a great photo, get a portrait photo done by a professional photographer. It could be the classic head and shoulders, or you doing something. You should at least have one clasic shot because it says you are mature and professional and you treat your music career as your business.

Shots for Facebook like this one, which my daughter took of me playing in Montego BayLuigi Cappel performing in Montego Bay

Luigi Cappel performing in Montego Bay

in Jamaica are fun shots, but not good enough quality for professional use.

If you are going to use shots in relation to a song or for an Album cover, make sure they are relevant, if it’s a song about a beach, like my song Muriwai Beach, then show a photo of Muriwai Beach. When I record my album Greenhouse, I have a photo of me holding a very large chunk of ice in my hand at Franz Joseph Glacier. The glacier is melting away with global warming and fits nicely with the title song which is also called Greenhouse. You can hear it at Music Forte.

If you don’t have a performance video, then video slide shows are a great way to add your songs to sites like Youtube. This one was done for me by my friend Noel of Powershows. In this case he supplied the images from his photo library.

There are lots of plug ins for websites like Photo Bucket which I use on my MySpace page. It lets you have some fun and easily put up a slide show. Photos add interest to your web page, especially a slide show, which attracts attention. It also helps people connect with you and feel like they know you a little. It makes them want to come back, or leave a comment, its about developing a relationship.

Even if you don’t need them now, take them anyway, you will find good uses for them. Take a camera to your gig and even if you don’t have anyone you know there, someone will take it for you.

Making money at gigs with merch

While famous bands can earn good money at gigs, for the lesser mortals, often gigs are played for free or cover costs and not much more. For some payment might come in terms of free drinks, food and maybe accomodation.

So how can you make money at your gigs? One good way is merch, aka merchandise. If you can get someone to man a mechandise table, this is a good way to sell some extra product and help build and support your fanbase.

First thing of course is your CD’s. Even when I am playing at an open mike or bar gig, I often get asked for CD’s that people can purchase. My recordings to date are all demo’s and while they are reasonable, they are far from professional quality, for a start I don’t have a drummer on them, not by choice, I just haven’t got round to finding someone to help me with that. Nevertheless, if I had some I could sell them.

So the next thing is because they are demo’s and not of a quality that I would want to produce professionally in volume, I have decided to burn my own for now. To that end I bought a Canon PIXMA iP4500 inkjet printer which will print straight onto printable CD’s and DVD’s. SO I can burn my CD’s from my TASCAM recording unit, or from my PC. I can print labels locally and buy DVD cases, so that I can also easily print slicks to go in them. I can now produce a pretty professional disk for around $3 and sell it for $10 which I think is reasonable. I can also print quality demo’s to go with my Press Kit. If it’s a demo, you could also add other material on the CD including your EPK, lyric sheets in Word or PDF format, video’s etc.

If you have a real following, you can do things like print T Shirts, there are companies all over that can do this for you. In New Zealand, one that is possible is Closet. There are also loads of companies that sell promotional products and there are lot of things that would work for you and many of them are quite cheap, even with screenprinting. One good example is Designagift. Think about what fits with your type of music and the type of audience you have and make sure the Merch you have made is suitable and would be attractive to them.

Artspace Music Industry Seminar

Today I went to an awesome seminar at Artspace. For the ridiculous sum of $5 I came away with pages of useful notes, many of which I will share on this blog, which was the first new activity I committed myself to at the seminar today.

The speakers were Rebecca Caughey of Funktion Music Media who gave us loads of great information including how to put together Press Kits and the whole process of how to do tour promotion from time of concept to the actual event and of course how to get people to your gigs and loads of useful people who can help in the various media.

Next was Lauren Clough of Maiden NZ Entertainment.  She not only gave us lots of information but challenged us with loads of tasks to make sure we did more than just take notes. A major part of her presentation was about understanding your target market indepth and making sure everything you do is consistent with that market. She gave us a truckload of information about Press Kits, both physical and EPK. How to get the right media to cover you gigs and story in a way that makes it easy and relevant for them.

The last speaker was Matt Turner of Kurb Promotions. Now I’ve been a fan of his blogs for some time and he did not disappoint. Now Matt reckons he is not practiced in public speaking, well he could have fooled the audience who were frantically taking notes on top of the excellent handout he left with us. If you are serious about marketing yourself on the web, this guy has studied it in depth and made it his lifework. You really should make contact and at the least follow his blog on MySpace.

What did I learn? Well you should have been there yourself. I took pages of notes and together with the tasks I gave myself, including creating this new blog, it would take me longer than the day I spent to tell you everything. Next time Artspace put on a seminar, go support them.

Oh and also a shoutout to Tabitha Frazer of Yellow Beatle records who was the only person who gave me a business card, it was a great one too. I hope to find out more about your business soon.

So thanks for reading this, I hope you will subscribe and encourage me to do more posts and also will pop over to my MySpace page, have a listen and send me a friend request, maybe eve give me a vote on the Demand It banner:)

Oh and do leave a comment please:)

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