Industry Insight: So You Want to Release Your Music?
Let me introduce Amela Duheric and Josh Beattie who are guest writing this edition of Industry Insight . Towards the later half of 2019 I was honoured to be asked to work with and consult for Amela on the styling, branding, image and storytelling relating to her change of direction in music. You won't find a more supportive and sweet soul in the Queensland music scene along with her partner Josh who are championing success for emerging musical talent.
Amela and Josh here.
So you’ve completed the mammoth task of writing and recording your song and you’re ready to send that little creative baby into the world. What’s the next step?
Releasing music can seem like a huge process and can be a daunting experience for many artists. But, with a little good old-fashioned planning and forward-thinking, we can maximise the impact of our releases, and make the process (relatively) stress-free.
1. Make sure you have the best possible version of your song; that means a hi-res copy of the mastered mix. We want to release good quality songs. Quality, of course, isn’t the easiest thing to define in music, but you’ll want to think along these lines:
- Creatively, does thing song communicate what I want it to? Am I proud of it? Does the production reflect this?
- Technically, does all this translate in what we hear? Is the record free from problems that would take away from the listening experience?
2. Register your song with a PRO (Performing Rights Association). In Australia, ours is APRA/AMCOS. Doing this will help protect your intellectual property and ensure any royalties come back to the right place - your wallet!
3. You’ll need artwork too. Make sure it’s a high-resolution square image, preferably 3000 by 3000 pixels.
4. Make a timeline of all the key dates of your release. You’ll need to refer back to this often, and set deadlines for yourself accordingly.
Ask yourself: - When is the release date?
- When do I need to submit certain materials? - When should I be reaching out to people? 5. Consider what kind of content you’d like to produce to complement your release. At a minimum, a professional and creative photo, but perhaps you want to tie in a music video, lyric video, behind-the-scenes footage and written content too. The more you can produce in advance, the more cohesive and polished you can make it! Remember to re-purpose and optimise this material for social media too. You’ll thank yourself later!
6. Whew! Time to pick a distributor and get this baby out there!
Distribution and Spotify Playlists
As soon as you have your song mastered and artwork ready, you should upload to a distributor immediately.
Ditto, Gyrostream, Tunecore are just a few who will do a great job.
The reason for this is to allow as much time as possible for Spotify playlist curators to consider your track/s for playlists. They recommend at least 6 weeks in advance of the release date. Kudos to Chris from GD FRNDS for recommending me the book ‘Work Hard, Playlist Hard’ by Mike Warner which is basically a ‘how to get on Spotify playlists’ bible.
Next step, make yourself a press release.
The Press Release
A press release or media release is a document which is sent out to media (list of some media below) including radio stations, music magazines, and blogs to help promote your release. It usually includes info about you as an artist, your new release (single, EP, album) and contains a streaming link to your new release.
What you should include in an email to media:
- Your press release
- A direct streaming link to your release (Soundcloud link)
- A downloadable folder (Google Drive, Dropbox etc.) which includes the press photos, wav and mp3 of song/s, artwork and artist bio.
Alternatively, you can hire Music PR companies to do this for you as they have likely established a relationship with music industry media.
Once Your Song is Released
Once your song is released, make sure you also release it on all of your social media platforms and keep plugging away. Try to post on your social media leading up o the release date. Create some video promotional material to get fans excited about your release. Share it to your family and friends. Feel free to get creative with how you promote it.
Rinse and Repeat
And then, once it’s all done, make sure you have something else coming up next and do it all again.
Thanks for reading and happy releasing! We've compiled a list of resources and links for you below to help you get going. If you have any questions please feel free to get in contact with us you'll find all of our professional links below the resource list.
• APRA/AMCOS | https://apraamcos.com.au/
• AMRAP | (Australian Music Radio Airplay Project) https://amrap.org.au/
• QMusic | QMusic is the Queensland Music Industry hub which provides some GREAT free workshops as well as grants and also hosts the Australian Bigsound Music Conference. www.qmusic.com.au
• Music Industry Inside Out | Music Industry Inside Out is an amazing resource which provides relevant and valuable information from current-day managers to publishers to artists. www.musicindustryinsideout.com.au
Some media you could reach out to:
• 4ZZZ Radio
• ABC Gold Coast Radio
• Emerge Radio
• Barre Talk, Australian Musicians Radio
• Blank Magazine
• AU Review
• AAA Backstage
• The Music
• Good Call Live
• Music Is My Muse
• Eat This Music
• Good Intent
• Triple J Unearthed