We are a record label, and the reason that you are signing to a record label is so that you are no longer an unsigned artist. But just to be clear, we thought it would be helpful to outline a few things that we will not do as your record label.
Who knows? You may even start to find that you don’t need a record label…
- We won’t release your record. We recommend you use Bandcamp for that.
- We won’t fund your recording sessions, your CD manufacture or your vinyl pressing. But you may want to have a crack at Pledge Music if you’d like your fans to help you out with that.
- We won’t send out promos of your music to anyone. We suggest you use Soundcloud for that sort of thing.
- We won’t promote or list your gigs anywhere. We do recommend that you put them on Songkick, however.
- We won’t provide you with any tour support. You might want to check out Couchsurfing as a way to save money on that.
- We won’t invest in artist development. However, you may want to see about what you can do towards getting an Un-Convention happening in your area. They often help.
- We won’t be your career advisors. Danny Barnes has already written the best article ever about how to make a living playing music. Go and read it. Seriously. In addition, Steve Lawson has written an Independent Music Manifesto and Andrew Dubber has written a book about Music in the Digital Age. Those should get you started.
- We won’t do social media for you. We do recommend that you use Twitter (as long as you’re chatty and friendly and don’t use it in a spammy way) and we expect you’re probably already on Facebook.
- We won’t run your website. We reckon you should start a blog, though, if you haven’t already. You could use Tumblr, WordPress or Posterous – or (even better) get your own website on your own domain name. If you don’t know how to do that, get a techie friend to help. It’s easy and cheap – and so good for you.
- We won’t make you a video. But we suggest you put any that you have on YouTube or Vimeo. Besides, you could make a video using your phone if you wanted. Start with a good idea, and work from there.
- We won’t bother you, demand that you change your music, organise your life for you or do any of the other stuff that you’d like to think that record labels do – but usually don’t.
- We won’t put you in debt, charge you for all sorts of things that you don’t need, lie to you, withhold or hide your royalties, get you to pay for something that we end up owning, pretend that £4 is the ‘cost price’ for a CD, shelve your records and prevent you from releasing them, take a cut of your merchandise or touring, spend your money on first class travel for our VP of Marketing, fund anyone’s expensive coke habit, discriminate on the basis of race, class, gender or age… and ultimately, we won’t exploit or screw you over in any way.
We can promise you that we won’t do any of the bad things that record labels sometimes do. But nor will we do anything else. You’re basically on your own. Except you’ll find that people tend to be helpful if you ask. So you’re not really on your own at all. Nobody is.