Back to Basics: Getting Your Music Online
BY REBECCA DIRKS
There’s no arguing that the internet has
completely changed the face of music distribution. From Radiohead’s famous pay-what-you-want strategy for In Rainbows to the
emergence of web celebrities on You Tube,
getting your music heard is no longer accomplished by mailing cassettes to record labels
and radio stations and crossing your fingers.
Of course, this is old news to many people—
MySpace and i Tunes have been providing an
avenue for unsigned artists for many years
now—but if you’re not putting your music on
the internet yet, here’s a quick guide to five
places you should go first.
With more than 100 million unique monthly
visitors, You Tube.com—the fourth most-visited site on the internet, according to compete.com—is the place to be. Music is a huge
part of You Tube. Andy McKee made his name
through his impressive You Tube videos, and
Journey found replacement lead singer Arnel
Pineda—a cover-band frontman from the
Philippines—by viewing his You Tube videos
of Journey covers.
You don’t need much to post videos to
You Tube. Just about every new point-and-shoot digital camera has video capabilities
these days (you can buy a Kodak EasyShare
for $100), and You Tube accounts are free and
easy to set up. The odds of becoming the
next sensation are low, but you’ll get your
music out there and have a link you can send
to people who want to check you out.
If you’re not already on Facebook, it’s probably by choice. Despite the negative feelings
some people have toward the largest social
networking site in the world, there’s a lot of
value in signing up. Creating a fan page for
your band or solo act is simple, and there are
applications like BandPage (covered in the
June issue of PG) that allow you to embed
music and customize the page’s look. Make a
page, get your friends to click your Like link,
and go from there.
Though MySpace’s glory days are long gone
(the site has lost 11% of its traffic in two
months, according to compete.com), it’s still
a central hub for bands and musicians. Band
or artist profiles are more difficult to design
on MySpace, but it’s easy to upload your
music if you have existing tracks to share.
Broadjam.com exists for the sole purpose
of helping independent musicians promote
their music. Many of the site’s features are
not free, but if you’re looking to go a little
further, it’s an easy place to start. Broadjam
offers templated web hosting to create your
own website with little effort. It also hosts
contests and resources for getting your music
licensed for TV, movies, and video games.
Plus, members can stream their music for
anyone to come and check out.
If you have digital versions of original songs
that you want to be able to sell, Tunecore
lets you easily distribute your music to i Tunes,
Amazon MP3, MySpace Music, and other
music sites. Tunecore charges $9.99 for a
single and $46.99 for an album—but you can
monitor your sales through a dashboard and
withdraw money you make at any time.
Don’t Forget to Diversify
If you’re already on one or more of these
sites, congratulations! From there, start
Googling guitar or songwriting competitions
to see if you’d like to enter them. You might
even want to set up a blog at blogspot.com
and get active on forums. If you don’t have
a presence on any of the aforementioned
sites, it’s time to grab a cheap camera or
audio recorder and get to work. The internet
might not make you a star or a millionaire,
but you’ll have a place to send your friends,
Cool Website Alert
ToneSettings.com is an interac-
tive site that features a growing
database of amplifier settings.
Members and users drive and build
the website’s content, contribut-
ing all of the amp settings, gear
reviews, forum posts, and news
updates published on the site.
BY LIANA PRUDENCIO
At press time, the collection
consisted of settings for about
78 amplifiers. Being a newer
site, ToneSettings is not yet that
expansive, but it continues to
grow. The amps that get the most
coverage are primarily Marshalls,
Peaveys, Fenders, and Mesa/
Boogies, but Laneys, Voxes, and
Oranges are listed as well. The
site will also reportedly feature
pedal settings in the future.
Navigating through the amp settings is fairly easy. Click on an
amp brand at the bottom of the
home page, when the new page
loads click the arrow next to
the manufacturer’s name in the
Amp Settings box at left, and
then choose the amp model that
appears under the brand name.
Because listed settings are user
submitted, there’s no guarantee
that one person’s idea of, say, a
“Classic ’60s/’70s Rock” tone on
a JCM 800 matches what you’re
looking for. However, ToneSettings
is a good place to start if you’ve
bought a new amp and are looking
to explore its tonal possibilities.
PREMIER GUITAR AUGUST 2010 39
family, and local fans, plus you’ll be able to
get valuable feedback that’ll ultimately make
you a better player.