Getting Signed: It’s All About Your Friends


We have all seen it and gotten pissed about it. Your band or one of your friends band who you are a big fan of gets passed up for a record deal and instead a terrible band gets the deal instead. You go on a rant every time you hear the signed bands name and get enraged. What did they have that the band you love didn’t? Most likely they had friends in high places. While I am not telling you anything earth shattering here, today we are going to discuss the easiest way to get your band signed without being a total nasty kiss ass scum bag. It is just being a friendly person and knowing what to do with your kindness.

Organic Referrals
In Marketing 101 we learn that the most important way to get someone to check out something new is by recommendation from a person whose opinion is valued. You have probably checked out other bands when people with good taste, musicians you admire, or other people you know have recommended the band. This is a organic referral in marketing dork speak. The way to put this into use for your band is to have other people recommend you to the label who are already in the label’s good graces.

Live And Learn
In the past we told you How To Turn A Show In Front Of 8 People Into One Of Your Most Important Shows. In this lesson we discussed being friendly with other bands since they may one day be signed if they are not already. Labels depend on their bands to tell them which bands are good and up and coming since they are out there seeing bands every night. Countless bands have been signed on the basis of this recommendation. If you kick ass live and make friends with other bands, these other bands are likely to recommend you to other people in the industry. Socialize and find common ground between you and the other bands. Offer help with any issues they are having if you can give it. Everyone has loopholes in their knowledge and even if a band is much bigger than yours, you may be hip to something they may not know and could really help them.

Being Nice
Today’s small time VFW show promoter is tomorrow’s label head/ manager/ booking agent. Being nice to everyone not only feels good, makes the world a better place, but also helps you to get a sympathetic and helpful ear in all of your endeavors. Being someone who is giving and helps other people in their community will get reciprocated. Never underestimate the power helping other people, in terms of getting help back.

Friend Of A Friend
Everyone has a friend who is into their band who another friend who is a sought after music industry figure. Keeping track of and getting your songs to be passed on by these people is one of the most important way to get your songs listened to. If you have been a good friend and they are a true fan of your band they should have no trouble passing along your music.

Send An Email
Keeping track of any industry figures and signed bands that you are friendly with is a smart move. Whenever you have new songs you are ready to get out there simply hit up all these people letting them know you have new stuff and ask them if they know anywhere you should send your songs to get them out to the world. Be specific, ask them if they know anyone who would be into this stuff and if they could pass it on or if you could send them something. though it is preferable for them to pass along themselves, if you are unsure they are actually going to do it, you can try and get the right info to send things yourself.

Jesse Cannon is the editor of Musformation. He produces records at his studio Cannon Found Soundation. Follow him on Twitter at @JesseCannonMusF. For more info please visit his website.