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Making Mistakes in TODAY'S Music Business

Being in the business of assisting Artists with their music and development, we see LOTS of things that make us cringe. We see artists making the same mistakes over and over and its sometimes hard to know when to say something.. (they are paying us to record, produce and mix their music.. not for career advice). So we decided to put some of the most common mistakes we see artists make in todays digital music world.

Purchasing Internet Beats and then Release an "Album"

Leasing an amazing beat or song from someone you do not know, then adding some vocals over it is NOT an original song. Especially if it was leased without a contract or paperwork. Whats to say that 1000 other people haven't already used or will use the same beat or song. Its not your's, you can't sell it, you can not distribute it, and a major label will never sign you for it. Find a local producer, collaborate with them, make the music together and customize it for YOU and the sound YOU want. Then record it and OWN it yourself.

Building major followers or video views on Social Media, but can't get 20 people out to a Live Show

Anyone with any real influence in this business does NOT care how many likes or followers you have. They actually care about how many true fans you have. How many people show up and pay to see you perform. How many people actually purchased your album or downloaded your song. Social Media presence is important... but far from what constitutes success. Also, the number of comments are FAR more important than likes.... Likes, Followers and Online Friends do not equal tickets sold, song downloads and real fans... What the industry cares about is how many of those likes will buy a ticket to see you perform live or pay to download your album.

Not Paying for Custom / Original Production

Artists that want or expect FREE production or music... You do not want to perform for free, give your music away for free or have someone steal your song lyric for lyric and melody do you? Well if you want to be in this business, start paying for production. Not only is it right and fair... its the way it works. Producers work exceptionally hard to put their talents into amazing songs, sounds and music. Their work is not free and its NEVER ok to use it without permission. And when you do have permission, they should ALWAYS get the credits on the records, youtube, videos, posts and music sites.

Hiring the WRONG Management

Your buddy, brother, mother or cousin are NOT managers. While they may absolutely have your best interests in mind (which is crucial), they do not have the experience to negotiate in this business or have the history or network of people you need for them to be effective. By all means, have those people in your corner, use them as advisors, but they should not be cutting deals for you. Spend the time to educate yourself on how the business works, how finances work, and the legalities in music and royalties and be your own manager. You would be amazed how much free education exists out there on the music business. Lastly, a Manager is NOT an investor and should NEVER be putting up money.

Wanting to Get Signed...

The goal is to make a living at what you love doing... not to get signed. There are lots of ways to make a living in music... Getting signed is the least common one.....

Contracts, What Contracts?

Doing business and exchanging money for services or music without contracts is the biggest mistake we see... If the person promising you something is NOT willing to put that promise in writing... its not a PROMISE. And even more importantly, have contracts between friends! We see good intentions destroy friendships too often. You can create contracts very inexpensively for the most common transactions: Leasing or purchasing music, management or partnership agreements, performance agreements... all of these can be done on sites like and others for a few bucks... and of course, for complex agreements, pay the experts... it will be the cheapest lesson you ever learn when someone doesn't hold up their end of the deal... Its not IF, its WHEN.

Giving Money to ANYONE in return for promises of fame, extra likes/views, or visibility

Its the number one scam we see repeated over and over. Nothing is lower and nothing is more common than people with some industry visibility preying on hoping artists to get some of that visibility. Those that have REAL power in the industry would rarely if ever exploit artists.. its usually those that are near or around someone with real power... they are simply exploiting that relationship but NEVER deliver.


Rotation Records is a Full-Service Music Company based in Norristown, Pa offering Recording, Production, Songwriting, Live Events, Music Videos and more... Call 484-231-8202 for a studio tour or free consultation.

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