In Defense of 1,000 True Fans – I Fight Dragons: 1 Band, 1 Year, & 10,000 New Fans – Part V

I had the honor and pleasure of speaking at NAMM last week about how to make money in the music business. Normally when I speak on panels it’s me and a few other Social Media,  Marketing, and PR peeps but this panel which was curated by Tony Van Veen of CD Baby / Discmakers was exceptional because it included an artist who is making it right now…  Brian Mazzaferri, the fearles leader of Chicago’s own I Fight Dragons had incredible insights to share about was his band is doing now to make money in the brave new world of “The old model isn’t quite totally dead yet, but the new model isn’t really proven either.”He took some time to really delve into his thoughts on the theroy and I’m delighted that he shared his insight with me and I know you will be too:

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New Media Pioneer: Jeff “Classic” Popka – Indie on Air! Host

Indie on Air! & Music in Action w/ host “Classic”
The Voice of Independent Music featuring industry professionals & great indie music.
Indie on Air! broadcasts live every Friday 12:30pm CST from Chicago via the BlogTalkRadio platform
Music in Action broadcasts live every other Wednesday 2:00pm CST from Chicago via the BlogTalkRadio platform
Both shows are available 24/7 as an archive immediately following the live broadcasts.

Q) Tell us a little bit about your Internet radio show. What inspired you to start it?

A) I actually host 2 Internet music shows under the Indie on Air! banner. The original Indie on Air! is a weekly 1 hr show that features an interview with an industry professional and also great indie music from various artists within different genres. My second show is Music in Action, which is live bi-monthly and is also a 1 hr program. However, on this show I feature indie artists who are using their God-given talent to help others & increase awareness of specific social causes. This is a more in-depth interview where I play only the music of my guest and discuss their personal involvement in the issue at hand.

My inspiration to start both these programs came from following my heart & doing what I love. Plus, I believe it is a natural progression of my career path as I have managed venues as well as produced music events for many years. I have a degree in Restaurant, Hotel & Institutional Management from Purdue University.

Q) Why do you believe new media resources (i.e. blogs, podcasts, Internet radio stations) have become so popular? How have they been beneficial to artists? How have they been detrimental?

A) I liken new media resources to On-Demand TV. People want to read, watch & listen to what they want, when they want. Specifically most Internet radio shows are archived and available 24/7. This, obviously, allows greater flexibility for the listener.

The Internet itself has opened the entire globe as a potential target market for artists. A few of my guests have developed a niche for themselves overseas after being heard on the net. My shows themselves have a pretty decent fan base from the UK & Eastern Europe though I broadcast from Chicago. Therefore, my industry contacts have increased greatly since the inception of the shows.

The only detriment I can see is you may have to weed through unprofessional blogs, shows, music, etc. to find quality material. However, in my mind, the hunt is half the fun.

Q) Media 2.0 has changed the way artists communicate with fans. Where do you envision online communication going next? Any thoughts on what Media “3.0” will look like?

A) The “I Want it Now” reality in which we live leads me to believe that internet TV & live events broadcast via the internet will flourish. Also, mobile phone applications will improve to view & listen to events. This will allow one to sit on the beaches of Southern California & watch or listen to a live event in New York, London or wherever. It is all about convenience for the consumer.

I truly feel that Media 3.0 will reflect the aforementioned capabilities but in a more global & socially responsible sense. I envision communications being instantly translated to allow immediate & direct responses between individuals from different countries & cultures. Media 3.0 will help break down communication barriers & usher in a new global cohesiveness & understanding. With that in mind, I feel all the people of this planet will come to realize we are not that different. Then, we can focus on addressing social concerns & natural disasters in a more “globally aware” sense. People will learn that they need not rely on their governments or mainstream media so much. Entertainment, music & technology will be the bridge that brings the world together as one. In fact, it is already happening.

Q) What does an artist have to do to get your attention? Are their specific characteristics that you look for?

A) I tend to look for artists who are professional, polite & hard working. They must be timely with their responses to inquiries but also do as requested. If I ask for mp3’s, don’t send me mp4’s. However, I am just as apt to play music from a new teen band as a touring band. Excitement, enthusiasm & common courtesy go a long way. Another strong factor is a song needs to grab my attention quickly. I listen to so much new music it can be overwhelming at times. But, overall I am very easy to contact. Interested artists should submit “mp3’s” (lol) to me @:

Q) What do you ultimately hope to accomplish with your show?

A) Number 1, I hope to make people smile. I love to introduce my listeners to new artists they would probably never hear otherwise. There is nothing I like more than one of my listeners thanking me for introducing them to someone new.

Number 2, I hope my shows inspire others to follow their hearts & do whatever they love. Specifically, I hope Music in Action inspires artists to use their creativity to help others.

Personally, I hope the shows lead me to a larger platform, so I can reach even more people around the world. I also would like to work directly with an indie label or network that shares my visions & thoughts on music & where the industry is headed. We need more positive messages & programming in our On-Demand world.

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Get Paid in 2010

Want To Increase Your Bottom Line? Focus On Your Fans!

moneymaking1Its here! A whole new Decade :)

Paying attention to this article could be the difference between you making a little money off of your music in the New Year vs. making A LOT of money!

All of the current news surrounding the music business is bad news. Music industry professionals are getting laid off left and right and CD sales continue to drop.

But I think that this is a very exciting time to come up with some alternatives and some offerings for your core fanbase that could make you a lot more money.

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Sound Advice TV – Derek Sivers on Don’t Listen to Everyone’s Opinions

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Most people in the music business don’t know what they are talking about! Musicians are in the drivers seat and you should trust your instincts and your guts.

In this episode of Sound Advice TV, Derek Sivers, founder of CD Baby, discusses ways to avoid the ‘pleasing factor’.

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In Defense of 1,000 True Fans – Kelly Richey – Part IV

Kelly Richey has been described as “Stevie Ray Vaughan trapped in a woman’s body with Janis Joplin screaming to get out.” That’s an apt appraisal of the Lexington, Kentucky native who’s now based in Cincinnati for many years. A working musician since her teens, she began her professional career as a member of the Arista Records group Stealin’ Horses; in 1990 she formed The Kelly Richey Band, with whom she has become both a national and international touring artist.

Kelly Richey is also consummate entrepreneur who refuses to quit. Since establishing her own label, Sweet Lucy Records, Richey has released 11 albums and a live DVD.  When I first spoke to her in August 2008 she was at the end of a long struggle to try to break through using traditional PR and radio.  She had spent a fortune on radio promoters, and traditional publicists, retail positioning and other old school tactics that were just not working for her.

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A Musician’s Roadmap to Setting Goals for 2010

What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School (a bestselling book) talks about a research study that was conducted at Harvard between 1979 and 1989:

“In 1979, the MBA graduates were asked, “Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?”

Only 3 percent had clear written goals and action plans to achieve them.

Thirteen percent of the graduates had goals, but they were not in writing.

The other 84 percent had no specific goals at all.

In 1989, a decade later, the researchers again interviewed the students of that class. Surprisingly, they discovered that the 13 percent, who had goals that were not in writing, were earning on average twice as much as the 84 percent who had no goals at all.

The truly amazing finding was that the 3 percent of students, who had written, clear goals when they left Harvard, were earning over ten times as much, on average, as the other 97 percent together.

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