ARE YOU IN CONTROL?
Advice from Tim Sweeney

August 2004


Let me ask you a simple question. Are you in control of your music career? Obviously, your first response will be "What do you mean? Of course I am. I write my own songs, make my own CDs, book my own shows, and sell CDs." But are you really accomplishing all the goals you have for your music career? If not, you are not in as much control as you think.

While it's true - you are writing songs, making CDs, playing shows and selling CDs - the lack of results you want is directly related to the lack of control you currently have. Let me show you how most artists have lost control and how you are going to get it back.

One of the first areas artists of all kinds lose control is in their songwriting or in the creation of their art. For most music artists, we like to focus on writing songs with meaning or messages that will be beneficial to those that hear them. The first loss of control comes when we think the people listening to our songs will magically "get it" when they hear it. Considering most fans primarily listen to music in their car, where they are distracted by the frustrations of traffic, being late, and going to a job they hate, it's difficult for them to focus on the messages in the songs.

With that in mind, instead of hoping people hear your song and get it, you need to push yourself to talk about the messages in your songs whenever and wherever you are promoting your music on a daily basis. Whether it's to or through the media or talking to someone you don't know on the street, you are in control of the conversation. The same is true with your shows. While it's easier to have others help promote your shows, it's not the same as when you are the one talking to new people. Even at your shows, don't just get up and play. Remember, you are in control of your entire performance time. Talk in detail about your songs, and what you want people to think about while you are playing. Invite them to come up to you after you're done to share their thoughts about your songs and how they relate to them personally. If you do this, you will find you will sell more CDs at your shows as well as through the other outlets you've established.

Why? It's simple. People will connect with you more and want to expand upon your "bond" or relationship. They will want to support you by buying a CD and coming to future shows.

My point is this: As artists we are in "artistic control" of what we want to create. However, you often forget that you are not communicating your passion, your belief, in your music and the messages in your songs. You are in control of that and in today's day and time where people are lost and distracted, you have to wake them up with your words and actions, not just your art.

Buy Tim Sweeney’s Guide to Releasing Independent Records Part IIIf you want to make a dramatic leap forward in taking complete control of your career, and generating a whole new audience and CD sales, I can teach you all of this in one hour. Simply order a copy of my new audio book Tim Sweeney's Guide to Releasing Independent Records Part II, and you can learn all of this in the car or at your next band practice.

For a more in-depth understanding of how you can control the conversation, and to learn all the other skills you will need, join me in Phoenix, AZ October 8 – 10, 2004 for a brand new seminar entitled "Artist Strategies." For more information, or to reserve one of the limited spaces before registration officially begins, contact me at (909) 303-9506.

As an additional bonus, I've included John Dawes' latest article, Are You Confusing Fans with Your Live Show Announcements, in the TSA Free Advice section. As you may already know, he's my co-author on The Complete Guide to Internet Promotion for Musicians, Artists & Songwriters and Using Email Effectively as an Artist or Songwriter so I strongly recommend you read it.


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Copyright © 2004 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 23 Aug 2016 22:57:11 -0400
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