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ManageMental Podcast with Blasko and Mike Mowery

Two experienced artist managers and music industry professionals bring you their take on the modern day music business and how they mentally approach the profession of management. Join Blasko and Mike Mowery as they cover hot topics in the industry, answer fan questions, provide insight on sales numbers and showcase new music with a slant toward developing artists.
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May 22, 2017
Part 2 of our “The Big Question” seires - How Do Bands Break Out and Become Famous?
 
Here is the article by Matt O'Dowd, Band Dude, Songwriter, and Composer
https://www.quora.com/How-do-bands-break-out-and-become-famous
 
Be extremely good at marketing and relationships.
 
Some ways to achieve this:
  • Become friends with people involved in music. Bookers, band dudes, bar owners, journalists, and music fans. Friends will help each other out, come out to shows, make introductions. Emailing Mp3s to strangers is largely a waste of time.
  • Develop a local following of people who like your music. This does not have to be a huge group of people, but if you invite a journalist to come check out your show, it should feel exciting. When people are dancing and singing the words, that excitement is contagious.
  • Develop a "story." Something that makes it really easy to talk about your band. Two twin sister lesbians singing harmonies? Cool! The band met in a barfight? Cool! This guy's sleeping with a Hearst daughter? Cool!
  • Be kind to people. Real rockstars are not assholes. They have a presence that makes those around them feel special and energized. 
  • Use the internet with expertise and keep in touch with fans and contacts. Always have something new to talk about.
  • Work hard and be patient. Recognize that this will likely take a long time and that there is no such thing as an overnight success.

And if any of this seems like a hassle, go to Medical School instead. You will help people, earn the respect of your community, make nice money, and never have to worry about a job. Music is high risk you are almost guaranteed to fail. Many are called. Almost none are chosen. But if you can make it work its one of the greatest adventures ever.
 
We encourage you to email us any questions or comments you may have for the podcast to me directly at AskBlasko@Gmail.com
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and instagram @blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and instagram @mikeoloop
 
www.outerloop.group
May 12, 2017

Article: https://www.quora.com/How-do-bands-break-out-and-become-famous

 

How does a band break and become famous? We all know there is no simple answer to this. However successful people do have habitual similarities that have been theorized as the foundation for their success. So... it stands to reason that perhaps there are reoccurring themes and actions that can be found in successful bands that can be reverse engineered for a new generation. 

 

So… How do Bands break out and Become Famous? According to Matt O-Dowd a self proclaimed band dude, songwriter and composer the answer is not easy, but attainable. He writes: 

 

Be extremely good at music. So good that people can't ignore you.

 

Some ways to achieve this:

  • Develop a unique sound that is unmistakably you. Most successful artists of all mediums become famous for a signature style. 
  • Write extremely good songs that total strangers are interesting in hearing again. Your friends and your mom will say everything is great. They cannot be trusted.
  • Listen to tons of music in a diverse range of genres, thus acquiring better instincts, greater knowledge, and better tastes. Listen to songs and sounds you love, and try to figure out why you love them. 
  • Find excellent creative partners and collaborate with them. Most great music is a team effort. Get used to the idea of ditching bad ideas and freely exchanging criticism. 
  • Be awesome at playing live, and find ways to make your shows memorable and unique.
  • Record good stuff on your own. In your bedroom. In a friend's studio. Whatever. You really don't need very much money to make an excellent sounding record. 

 

Mentions in this episode: Lorna Shore commercial (https://youtu.be/VdQZpNNbxY4), Refused’s Shape of Punk to Come (https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-shape-of-punk-to-come/id300995967), and Cryptic Slaughter (https://www.facebook.com/CRYPTICSLAUGHTER/)

 

Email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

ManageMental is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

 

May 7, 2017

This episode is dedicated to answering questions from you, the listeners. Blasko and Mike tackle the following questions, submitted via email, with great detail and real world examples.

 

From Jesse: “My question is if you could explain the different types of record label deals for bands. I work with a few bands that have been approached to sign 360 deals. Please explain the difference in some deals you know of for artists.”

From Cat: “I have been fortunate to find myself in a lot of songwriting writing sessions. Some with local acts and some with more established names in the music business.  My question is what is the best way to handle oneself in these situations when it comes time to discuss how things should be split?   I have received many opinions on this from: ‘you should establish this before your start writing’; to past mangers telling me not to discuss it at all, because they (manger) are going to do that. Would love to hear from your perspective how things should work. Is there a standard?”

From Bobbi: “I was wondering about your opinions on street teams. When should you assemble one, how do you decide on incentives for the fans involved, and are street level ones really necessary anymore or is viral the way to go?”

 

Email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

ManageMental is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

May 1, 2017

 Article: http://www.hypebot.com/hypebot/2017/04/the-art-of-using-cover-songs-to-grow-your-audience.html

 

Dave Kusek is the founder of the New Artist Model, an online music business school for independent musicians, performers, recording artists, producers, managers, and songwriters. He is also the founder of Berklee Online, co-author of The Future of Music, and a member of the team who brought midi to the market.

 

In this episode Mike and Blasko explore the points laid out by Dave Kusek in his article “The Art of Using Cover Songs to Grow Your Audience”. He writes:

 

Many artists may have conflicted feelings about cover songs, for although they can be fun to play and offer an easy way to connect with your audience, it can also be irritating when cover songs are all an audience wants, or when they get more attention than original compositions. Here we look at the best way to make cover songs work for you.

 

1. Make it Your Own

Best way to get people who hear your covers into your original music? Put your own unique spin on every song you cover. That means bending the songs stylistically to fit with the kind of music you play and write. 

 

2. Subscribers Over Views

There’s this fascination with “viral” videos in the music industry. But a ton of views on a cover aren’t worth much on YouTube unless you can get in touch with those people again. We’ve seen a lot of musicians hit it with a crazy viral video only to release an original music video on deaf ears.

 

So instead of thinking, “How can I get 10,000 views,” get yourself in the mindset of, “How can I get as many viewers as possible to subscribe?”

 

Setting up suggested videos or playlists on your YouTube channel can be a great way to get people to continue watching, which increases the chance they’ll actually subscribe.

 

  1. Don’t Be Afraid to Use Call to Actions

 

And that leads us into the next point – utilizing call to actions. So what exactly is a call to action? It’s basically just you directly asking your viewers or listeners to take some further action. Maybe it’s watching another video, or subscribing to your channel, or entering your contest, or clicking the link in your description box.

 

If you’re releasing covers on YouTube, you can easily use “cards” to suggest other videos your viewers can watch next. As you upload your video, you’ll be able to add cards in the “Cards” tab across the top of the upload screen. Use cards to suggest other cover songs or even original songs when people reach the end of your videos.

  

We encourage you to email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

Missed out on Mike’s 60 Days to Signable course? Head over to www.outerloopcoaching.com to stay on top of the latest courses and news from Outerloop Coaching.

Get $30 your next order at ArtistFlags.com using the code: mentalflag

ManageMental is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

 

 

Apr 25, 2017

This episode is inspired by 60 Days to Signable student Jeremy Miller who writes:

“I met Mike briefly at Launch Music Conference and I’m really excited for the 60 Days to Signable class coming up. I’ve noticed a lot of different “music business help” sources contradict others, and I hear a lot of different opinions on the state of the scene/industry and how to get “big” with your music. I get it, different tactics work for different people and like I’ve heard Mike say, that there’s exceptions to everything.

But I've personally noticed what works best is

  1. Having killer music, that's obviously the main thing.
  1. Always putting out consistent great content.
  1. Being fearless, persistent, but not a pest
  1. Realizing it takes time so be patient.
  1. Yes a bit of luck seems to be a factor for sure, but I truly feel like that seems to be the main mix for a successful path. 

I really think your podcast & things like Mike's outerloop coaching are great tools for people who are trying to make this their career. 

So basically I just want to say thank you. 

Keep up the awesome show & much respect to you both.”

 Mike and Blasko go through Jeremy’s list above, point by point to give listeners a deeper understanding of what they mean in terms of the industry. Also in this episode: Mike’s comments about his visit to Launch Music Conference – www.launchmusicconference.com

We encourage you to email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

Missed out on Mike’s 60 Days to Signable course? Head over to www.outerloopcoaching.com to stay on top of the latest courses and news from Outerloop Coaching.

Get $30 your next order at ArtistFlags.com using the code: mentalflag

ManageMental is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

Apr 17, 2017

 Ghost Lawsuit

http://www.metalinjection.net/metal-crimes/the-entire-ghost-lawsuit-document-leaks-more-info-on-why-former-nameless-ghouls-are-suing-papa-emeritus

 

Do We Need A Band Agreement?

https://www.thebalance.com/do-we-need-a-band-contract-2460671

 

This week, we take on the topic of band agreements, suggested by listener Eric Peterson, who also happens to be Mike’s neighbor!

Eric writes: “I've been listening to managemental since the first episode and love it. Mike is my neighbor and I've been a metal/ music business enthusiast since I was a young kid. Really enjoying the insight between you and Mike. 

 

I have a quick topic for you guys. Seems like the hot topic these days in the metal world is the drama going on with Ghost. Your guy's take on that I think would be really interesting…”

 

Do We Need a Band Contract?

Bands don't like discussing contracts, period, and of all the contracts they like to avoid considering, artist contracts top the list. It can be uncomfortable considering band member contracts because discussing contracts can feel like acknowledging a certain level of distrust. Usually, your band members are also your close friends - in many cases, they're like family to you - and you would like to think that your personal relationship means that no one in the band would take advantage of anyone else.

Beyond the current situation being hashed out in Swedish courts with Ghost, consider these reasons a band member contract may be exactly what your band needs:

 

  1. If your band has one songwriter - or if you think all of your songs are group efforts. Songwriting royalties are a constant area of contention for bands. It is a good idea to make sure everyone is on the same page as to who gets credit for what.

 

  1. One or two band members are paying most of the expenses for the band. Bands cost money, and some band members may be in a better place financially to be able to cover the costs of the band. Get it in writing as to how this person will be paid back when the band starts making money.

 

  1. Your band works with session musicians. Whether you're bringing in extra help on tour or in the studio, a contract can help draw the line between who is actually in the band and who is being hired as a sort of "freelance" musician.

 

  1. You have contracts with other people as a band. If your band has signed contracts with managerspromoters, agents or labels, it makes sense to have at least an informal contract between band members to make sure you can deliver on your contractual obligations. For instance, if you have signed on to do a 20 date tour, having the guitar player bow out of the band the night before you leave puts you in a sticky situation.

 

  1. What happens to joint owned equipment - and jointly owned debt - if the bank should break-up or if one person wants to leave?

 

Find the answers and details in this episode.  

 

We encourage you to email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

Join Mike's webinar “Sixty Days To Signable” at signup.outerloopcoaching.com. Classes are conducted online in seminar format with time for interaction nearly every week. Wednesdays 8 PM April 19 to June 7 with a fully interactive class session on June 7.

Get $30 your next order at ArtistFlags.com using the code: mentalflag

ManageMental is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

 

 

Apr 10, 2017
 
Blasko and Mike take on the subject of VIP Meet and Greets, requested by listener Jason Bubble. VIP packages are sold in addition to a show ticket and includes a number of perks. These packages have become almost somewhat of a necessity to assist in reducing expenses of touring while providing an additional stream of income to the bands. 
What are the values of VIPs? What kind of experience should fans expect from a VIP? Why do VIPs exist? Do fans want it? What makes a VIP experience worth it? Find out in this episode. 

We encourage you to email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313 

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

Join Mike's webinar “Sixty Days To Signable” at signup.outerloopcoaching.com

Get $30 your next order at ArtistFlags.com using the code: mentalflag

This podcast is part of the Jabberjaw Media Network. www.jabberjawmedia.com 

 

Apr 6, 2017
Blasko interviews Mike for an in-depth look into Outerloop Coaching’s webinar course "Sixty Days to Signable". The webinar is 8 weeks long and each course brings something new to the table, students will learn from real-life experiences, and have access to Mike and his team to answer questions throughout program. At the end of the 8-week course students will be able to walk away with new knowledge and resources to allow them to project their careers within the music industry.
 
Sign up for Sixty Days To Signable at signup.outerloopcoaching.com 
Courses are Wednesdays at 8pm EDT April 19 - June 7

Tune into Mike's Facebook Live event Thursday April 6th at 8pm EDT for a special offer!

Apr 3, 2017

Article: http://www.hypebot.com/hypebot/2017/03/how-to-run-a-successful-crowdfunding-campaign-10-tips.html

 

Author: Leah Waldo is the Curriculum Manager for massive open online courses at Berklee Online. She is a Berklee College of Music alumna and received her Master’s in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. 

 

We’re digging in to the subject of crowd funding and tips on how to successfully run one. Mike most recently had great success with the Darkest Hour crowdfund campaign and we explore Leah Waldo’s article “10 Tips to Run a Successful Crowd Funding Campaign” with the following points laid out in the article:

 

 

  • Grow Your Email List and Social Media Followers
  • Set a Realistic Goal
  • Identify Potential Donors Outside of Your Email List and Social Media Followers
  • Make a Compelling Video That Tells your Story
  • Don’t Sell Yourself Short
  • Don’t Give Too Many Options
  • Make Your Fans Feel Like They Are on the Journey with You
  • Keep in Touch
  • Be Grateful
  • If at First You Don’t Succeed, Try and Try Again

 

 

We encourage you to email any questions or comments to askblasko@gmail.com

Find Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @blasko1313

Find Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

 

Mike is opening his knowledge base of the business to aspiring musicians! Join his webinar “Sixty Days To Signable” at signup.outerloopcoaching.com

 

Get $30 your next order at ArtistFlags.com using the code: mentalflag

Mar 27, 2017

Article: http://lefsetz.com/wordpress/2014/05/28/myths/

 

Author: Bob Lefsetz

 

In the last episode we talked more about record labels and how to score that elusive “deal". This week we dig into some music business mythology. Blasko uncovered an article written by the ever so controversial Mr. Bob Lefsetz simply titled “Myths” on his Lefsetz Letter Blog. We discuss each point in detail from myth to reality.  

 

  1. Sales count.

It’s no longer whether someone buys your album, but whether they listen to it, that’s the relevant metric that everybody seems to ignore as they trumpet irrelevant SoundScan numbers. Want to know if an act is truly happening, check their TICKET COUNTS!

 

  1. Social media builds careers.

This would be like saying a baseball player’s statistics make him a star. No, it’s what he does on the field. Social media is a way for fans to stay in touch with their musical heroes. Music always has been and always will be the epicenter of any career. In other words, if you’re good enough, you don’t have to tweet, you don’t have to maintain a Facebook page, your fans will spread the word and keep you alive. But you must have your music on YouTube and streaming services, you’ve got to make it easy for people to access it and listen to it.

 

  1. Publicity sells tickets.

If this was so, Miley Cyrus would sell out. But she doesn’t. And she’s gotten more press than anybody. It’d be like expecting Kim Kardashian to fill arenas.

 

  1. Terrestrial radio is forever.

It is the dominant listening format, it’s still the best way to break a record. But if it’s so big and powerful, why can you not name the number one record?

 

  1. Record companies care about art.

They only care about money, it’s a business, and if anybody tells you different, they’re lying.

 

  1. Google Glass is the future.

It breaks the number one rule of fashion, it’s dorky! Wearables will play a part in the future, but they’ll be relatively hidden, accessories. Only the geeks at Google could miss this. In other words, give a nerd a billion dollars and he’s still a nerd.

 

  1. Selling out is cool.

No, credibility is cool.

 

  1. Raising a ton of money on Kickstarter means anything other than the money.

It’s not about money, but how many pledgers there are. And in most cases, especially music, the number of people ponying up is miniscule. They’ll support the artist, but they won’t help grow the artist’s reach/career.

 

  1. Sound quality counts.

If it did, no one would be wearing Beats headphones. They sell because they’re a fashion item. By APPLE aligning with a laughable enterprise built on momentary hype they are squandering brand equity.

 

Email your questions/comments to Blasko at askblasko@gmail.com

 

Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313

Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @Mikeoloop

 

Mike is opening his knowledge base of the business to aspiring musicians! Join his webinar “Sixty Days To Signable” available now at signup.outerloopcoaching.com  

 

Use the code: mentalflag to get $30 off your next order at ArtistFlags.com

Mar 20, 2017

Article: http://music3point0.com/2017/02/23/4-things-record-deal/

Author: http://www.bobbyowsinski.com

Bands tend to think that the holy grail is scoring a record deal. I imagine a lot of that thought process comes from the need for validation of their art. There is nothing wrong with that but in this digital age a recording contract is not necessarily the end game. Many a career has been established at the hands of many independent artists for many years. But nothing can change the fact that whatever your goals are, if you want an actual career in this business you need to build some kind of foundation and fan base with your music. I and many others put a lot of stock in bands that can build a strong social media presence early in their career. However, Blasko recently came across a post written on Music Three Point 0.com by Bobby Owsinski that somewhat argues my position and kicks it back old school.  

He writes: 

It wasn’t that long ago that A&R execs at record labels were scouring the online platforms, looking for acts with the high view numbers, page visits or Likes. All that’s changed as artists and their webmasters became more sophisticated in gaming the system by using bots or fake users to drive up their numbers. Today you can easily purchase big numbers of views or likes for a relatively small amount of money, but does that actually help you get that elusive record deal? 

Gone are the days of A&R executives scouring artist's social media to determine an artists popularity. Now, these executives have in many ways fallen back on older methods of gauging whether an artist will be a label success. Here, we look at four factors they are likely to be considering.

  1. Do you actually draw an audience when you play a gig?
  2. Do you connect with an audience in a live show as well as you do in an edited video?
  3. Are you charming and memorable in off-the-cuff interviews and interactions?
  4. Do you actually sound good live?

 In this episode, we go over each question with real world examples.

We encourage you to send any questions/comments you may have for us and the podcast. Email Blasko at askblasko@gmail.com.

Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313

Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @Mikeoloop

Get Mike’s “Music Management Primer – The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterlopCoaching.com 

Use the code: mentalflag to get $30 off your next order at ArtistFlags.com

Mar 13, 2017

In this episode, we answer a question from long time listener, Wade. He voiced some concerns regarding PR and Publicists and specifically when is a good time to hire one and what can they do to further your career.

 

Below are the questions we cover:

 

"My band is currently building a package to launch very soon. We all have a lot of experience but this is the birth of this band. We just finished our EP, built a website, set up an online shopping store, acquired thousands of followers across the big social media platforms (without any audio), etc…Now that we have all our ducks in a row, is now a good time to cultivate a PR relationship?" 

 

"We haven't played any shows. Will this stop a PR from being interested in us?"

 

"Should we release this EP, play some shows, build more of a following, record our next EP in four months and then pursue PR for our second release?" 

 

We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.

 

Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313

 

Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

 

Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com.  Mike's brand new course - SIXTY DAYS TO SIGNABLE is now accepting sign ups - which will run Wednesdays from April 19 to June 7 at 8 PM EST. Space is limited and is expected to sell out quickly.  If you’re serious about your band’s or your personal success, there is no time like the present.  Visit OuterloopCoaching.com/signup for more information.

Mar 6, 2017
 
We were recently contacted by a music biz colleague, Attorney Mark Kesten. He voiced some concerns regarding issues that he encounters with a lot of young bands feeling misinformed about when and why and how to hire an attorney. We even call our good friend Los Angeles-based music attorney Eric German to weigh in on today's topic. 
 
This was the basis of Mark’s email to us… 
 
"I check out a good number of music industry podcasts and find that, for the most part, nobody speaks about the role an attorney can play in the very early stages of an artist’s career. Some bands have made critical mistakes in signing agreements early on without seeking counsel and these agreements end up really hurting their chances for success.  Similarly, I also speak to a number of young managers that are unaware of the role attorneys can play in a young artist’s development."
 
So, let’s dispel a few myths… 
1. You don’t get a good attorney until much later in your career. 
 
2. You cannot afford a good music lawyer. 
 
3. A band's manager should be reviewing and negotiating their contracts for them in the place of an attorney.  
 
Eric German, a music attorney who represents a number
 
- What are some of the bands you represent? 
 
- Where does one look to hire a music biz attorney? 
 
- Do bands need to hire a specific music business attorney or will any legal representation be sufficient? 
 
- When is the right time to hire a music biz attorney? 
 
- How much does it cost? 
 
- Your best piece of advice for developing bands? 
 
We encourage you to send in any questions/comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com

 

Feb 27, 2017
 
15 Very Quick and Helpful Things You Can Do To Help Your Music Career” by Sari Delmar for MusicThinkTank.com is the basis for this episode's discussion. Sari can be found online at at Saridelmar.com
 
#1 Remember Peoples’ Names 
 
#2 Send Thank You Notes 
 
#3 Database Relentlessly
Keep organized and detailed databases of your mailing list, the local media, your supporters, promoters, and everything else. This will save you tons of time and help you manage relationships with ease. There’s a kazillion great databasing tools out there and a simple spreadsheet does the trick as well.
 
#4 Role Play
Now this is a fun one! As an indie band you often need to wear a number of different hats. One minute you are a publicist, the next you’re an agent, and the next moment you’re a merchandiser. It can happen so fast sometimes it’s easy to forget the intricacies that make each of these professionals so good at their jobs. Every time you write an email or make a call in one of these roles, approach it as if you are the best publicist, agent, or merchandiser in the world and think about what a professional in that field would do. 
 
#5 Read Up 
Being well read will do more for you then make you look cool while schmoozing industry types. Watching the industry, keeping tabs on changes, and more will allow you to make the best strategic decisions possible.
 
#6 Learn How to do a Proper Show Advance
There are subtle intricacies that go into having a show run smoothly and a promoter walking out thinking you’re a professional. Lots of that starts with a great advance. Take a moment to learn from a professional on what a good advance looks like. 
 
#7 Always Update your Materials
Don’t make excuses for old websites and demos when sending it around to industry –  If you send someone something you should stand behind it and ensure it is the best presentation of your band, otherwise forget sending it! I know it’s hard to keep up but find systems and tools that help you stay on updating pretty please.
 
#8 Don’t be Sketchy About Paying People Being reliable and easy to deal with needs to carry through to your money dealings as well. When someone does work for you, no matter how discounted, it is a sign of good faith to pay them quickly. It shows you value their time and appreciate their support. 
 
#9 Hire an Amazing Designer 
Your brand and artist logo is SO intensely important. Great designers have a special talent that comes through many years of experience in their craft and you just can’t shortcut this important step to presenting you brand to the public.
 
#10 Protect Your Assets
Gear ain’t cheap and there’s mean mean people in the world who like to steal it and sell it on Craigslist. Get your gear insured by a reputable insurance company. The cost of a plan is much less than the cost of having to re-buy everything. 
 
#11 Ask the Right Questions 
Sometimes it’s hard to know what the right questions are. If you don’t understand something ask for it to be spelt out. If you have a concern, voice it! Asking the tough questions is what a good manager’s job is – if you don’t have one, you have to learn to ask these questions yourself.
 
#12 Go Direct to Fan Whenever Possible Interact and spend hours with your fans. They are the most important thing you’ve got. Learn from them, take their feedback, and inspire them to fall in love and promote your band from the heart. This will be the key to your success.
 
#13 Be Patient
If you stay focused and work hard you should start to see some great results. Nothing happens overnight.
 
#14 Be Humble 
Appreciate everything you have and get to do. Share your credit, wealth, and glory with those around you who helped you get there.
 
#15 Expect Nothing 
You are not owed anything and thinking that you are will only drive your dreams further in the wrong direction and push away the people you need to bring them closer.
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com
Feb 20, 2017
 
 
In this episode we reference the article on Music Think Tank written by Simon Tam

 

 


Do you sometimes feel that your band’s draw is languishing? Are you tired of seeing the same people at your shows and want to play to a new crowd, even in your hometown?


If you’re like most musicians, you know that you absolutely can do better, that you have more fans out there than who actually show up at at the venue, and despite always receiving positive feedback, you don’t know why more people aren’t showing up. Here are some tips on building some momentum back into your tour dates so you can increase your band’s draw:


1. Find a Different Angle for The Show: It’s easier to get more people to show up if it’s your band’s first show, when you’re releasing a new album, it’s a tour kick off, or when it’s your final gig. Obviously, it’s because your fans realize those as special occasions and want to be there.


So rather than making every local show the same, find creative ways to make them more enticing: film a live music video, let fans write the set list, do special covers, play acoustic if you normally don’t (or vice-versa), record a free download of a live track, etc. In other words, give your fans a compelling reason to show up. 

 
2. Play Less Often: It’s easy to overplay the same town. 

3. Build Up Buzz About the Show: How is your band promoting shows right now? With the occasional post on Facebook by some of the band members? Even with social media, people can read through the energy: if your own band isn’t excited about the show, why should your fans be? In addition to your band, find some fans or friends who are willing to promote the show with you by using social media, hanging out flyers, and personally inviting people out. In fact, the way to create a buzz is to get people talking: a personal invitation will do more than dozens of generic tweets or Facebook invites.


4. Make the Event Interactive: Think of some new ways to make fans a part of the experience. Maybe you can have a “frequent fan” card where they collect stamps for each show and redeem it for a free t-shirt or unreleased material. Maybe you can invite some other artists who are fans to guest perform during your set. Or maybe you can shoot a fan-made “live video” for YouTube shot entirely with Vine videos on cell phones. Whatever it is, get creative and make fans feel like they’re an important part of the experience so they won’t want to miss out.


5. Actually Promote: Don’t expect people to check your website’s tour dates on a regular basis or for them to notice the poster you hung up at the local shop. Do those things and more: issue a press release and try to get local coverage, call the local radio station and see if they’d like to give out free tickets, share information about your show multiple times over a few weeks on social media, physically mail postcards or invites to your mailing list, and more. Think about it: how do you find out about local shows?

6. Change Who You Perform With: If you are playing for the same crowd every time, you might need to change up the venues that you’re playing or the other artists who you share the bill with. Perhaps you need to change the genre of music or even introduce other types of artists such as comedians, dancers, visual artists, etc. Get out of your comfort zone and play for a new, completely different type of crowd.


If you have a great show that people thoroughly enjoy, you’re off to a great start. However, these days it simply isn’t enough. Chances are, you and your bandmates can do a little more to help bring the crowd out to your shows. A bigger crowd means you’ll have some more income, as well as a buzz about your music that can get you into larger venues.


We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.


 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313

Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop

 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com

 

 
Feb 13, 2017
Article: Is your band REALLY ready to be on a record label? By Shan Dan Horan
http://www.altpress.com/features/entry/is_your_band_really_ready_to_be_on_a_record_label
 
If you’re currently grinding it out in a basement or garage somewhere, chances are “being signed” is on your list of long-term goals. But, we offer a reality check: Are you actually ready to be in a partnership with a record label?
 
 
1. Is your music not just good, but great?
With the advent of the internet, music has become so universally accessible that every band in the world now has a platform to take center stage. This is a great way to garner attention from fans and record labels across the world; however, now it’s harder than ever to get noticed. One of the greatest ways to shine through your competition is having a spectacular album—after all, that’s what this is all about. While some people would disagree with me, one of the most important factors with any successful band is having not good, but greatmusic. 
 
2. Do you have a tour history?
You can only advertise your album on Facebook so much. With a new album comes an intense touring schedule. Getting out on the road and spreading your music is by far one of the best ways to gain new fans (especially a tour with bands that have a similar following). The perils of the road are harsh, and being away from the comforts of home can break the most hardened individual. If a band hasn’t proved themselves on the road, most labels will view that as a risk.
 
3. Are you open to suggestions and change?
With being signed to a label comes a vast cloud of knowledge. There are people who have dedicated most of their lives to breaking bands and know the ins and outs of what works and what doesn’t. Sometimes you will get asked to do things that won’t make sense to you at first, but the reasons behind the changes will become apparent over time. If you aren’t open to change or input from someone else, you most certainly aren’t ready for a record label and should maybe maintain a DIY approach.
 
4. Do you view your band as a business, or a hobby?
At some point, every musician needs to sit down and ask themselves this serious question: “Is music something I just want to do for fun, or do I want this to be my full-time job?” If you are serious and want your band to become your career, it's time to treat it like a job. Get up early, set goals and tasks, start managing your money, calculating costs and expenses and printing merch. Is your product good enough, or does it need more work? A record label will always pick up a band that has their business together over one that is a complete mess.
 
5. Do you have a fanbase?
On the daily, I receive hundreds of band submissions at Artery Recordings, and most convey the message that “all they need is to get signed.” No music, no shows, no fans, just that message. The truth is, I don’t have a button under my desk I push that makes a band instantly famous with an army of instant fans. All bands take time and effort to develop. Before committing to such a huge task, every label looks to see if you already have “buzz.” If you have “buzz,” most labels hope to intensify that on a bigger scale. So promote, play shows, place ads, premiere videos—all are small steps in the right direction. 
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com
Feb 6, 2017
Article:
https://www.musicclout.com/contents/article-440-6-definitions-you-must-have-for-your-musics-brand.aspx by John Kowalski
 
Website: 
http://babacita.com
 
In order to truly define your brand, you should break down the 5 W’s. 
 
So what are the five W’s you ask? 
 
Who
What
Why
Where
When
How
 
When defining these for your Music it goes like this…. who your audience is, what they like, why they would follow you, where they are, when you will interact with them, and how this interaction takes place.
 
Who is demographics; are they male or female (a mix of both?), what age group are they in? Do they speak other languages? If it is a demographic, chart it. Compare your current audience to your desired audience.
 
What should include what you are offering; what need are you fulfilling for your audience? Are you creating a song that makes them smile and turn a bad day around? What about a performance that inspires and takes them away for a few hours?
 
Where should encompass their physical location, where they vacation, where they hang out online, wherever you will find your audience. Include all physical and virtual locations.
 
When is a little harder to define. Will you interact with them at an in-person event, or will they discover you through a friend. Where can they reach you? Where can you reach them?
 
Why should contain all the reasons your audience wants to follow you. What benefit does your brand give them?
 
How is what sets you apart from others in your trade. How often do you interact with your audience, how is it going to be different from other musicians?
 
 
Remember: Your brand is a perception or a feeling that speaks to your audience’s emotions. It’s what you stand for and what your art represents. Your brand is the foundation of any relationship with your current or future audience.
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com

 

Jan 30, 2017
Referenced Article: Band merch 101: What to make, how to make it, how to sell it by Rob Dix
http://www.musicthinktank.com/blog/band-merch-101-what-to-make-how-to-make-it-how-to-sell-it.html
 
Why get merch made? 
Music merchandise has always been important to bands, both as a source of revenue and to help raise awareness of your ‘brand’. Fans love buying merch too - the music we like is closely tied in with our identity, and wearing a band’s t-shirt is a way of showing off that identity to others. Now, merch is more important than ever as a way of making money. For many independent artists, the music itself is almost a ‘loss leader’ - given away to promote live shows and merchandise.
 
What should you sell?
Merchandise ranges from the t-shirt to rather more imaginative items but how do you know what kind of thing your fans want to buy?
Ask them! If you’ve got a mailing list and / or a social media following, create a poll asking them what kind of merch they’d want to buy. You can offer a free item of merch to one respondent picked at random, as an incentive to reply.
Check out what other bands similar to you are selling.
 
 
Controlling the costs 
Buttons and stickers for example are popular because they cost so little to make that you can give them away as well as selling them. By contrast, hoodies are so expensive that you could be seriously out of pocket if they’re not as popular as you thought.
 
Minimum runs: All items will have a minimum quantity that you’ll be allowed to order. 
This will be higher for some types of merch than others.
 
Complexity of design: If you’re screen printing items you’ll be charged a set-up cost for each colour in your design - meaning a complex design with 4 colours will be much more expensive to produce than a simple 1 colour print.
 
Finding a designer
If you don’t already have a design, you’ll need to find someone to create your artwork for you. If you don’t have a friend who’s skilled in Photoshop or Illustrator, you can ask around other bands you know for a recommendation
 
There are also forums where artists sell pre-made designs (which you can customise), or you can find someone whose style you like to design something just for you.
 
If your designer is experienced in creating artwork for print (rather than the web), they’ll be able to give you the files in the format your printer is going to need.
 
 
Finding a manufacturer
Again, the best way to find a good manufacturer is to ask another band where they got their stuff made. If that’s not possible, Google is your friend - find a few printers local to you, and email them for a quote. Make sure you give them as much information possible about what you want, so they can quote accurately. For example, for t-shirts this would include:
The quantity you want
The colour(s) of the t-shirts
The number of colours in your artwork (attach a low-res sample if you can)
Where you need them delivered to
Printers will often quote the ‘per item’ price as well as a ‘set up’ cost for the screens, so you might need to do some math to arrive at the total cost. Make sure you’ve accounted for delivery and any taxes too.
 
 
Selling on the road
Selling merch on the road is a great way to pay for your gas, and help make ends meet if you’re playing shows for a low guarantee. It’s best to call ahead and make sure the venue has an area you can use to sell from. Most venues also insist on taking commission, so check what the venue cut is when booking the show.
 
You’ll need to keep track of what you’re selling, so you can make sure you’re not losing money, and you know when you’re getting low on stock and need to re-order. The easiest way is to have a pre-printed sheet which breaks down each item and size, against which you can tally your sales for each show. After each show, you can count the cash against the sales, and note down the quantity remaining for each size.
 
Selling online
If you’re attracting fans to your website or Facebook page, it’s a missed opportunity if you’re not offering them stuff to buy once they’re there. Services like BigCartel give you a free shopfront where you can easily add your products and have fans pay by Paypal. You just need to keep track of stock levels, and make sure one band member is in charge of packing and shipping the orders.
 
Another solution is to use a POD (print on demand) solution which prints merch ‘on demand when a fan buys it, and sends it direct to the fan. Once you’ve uploaded your designs, all you need to do is promote your store the company does the rest, and sends you whatever profit you’ve decided upon. That means you can offer items you might not be able to afford to print in bulk, and never have to worry about shipping or going out of stock.
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com

 

Jan 23, 2017
This is an article we stumbled upon on StereoGum for their Top 40 Metal Albums of 2016. Before the author gets down with the actual countdown he gets dark on the state of metal in general and it makes a good topic for today. The link to the article is here for all those interested in checking it out: http://www.stereogum.com/1914718/the-40-best-metal-albums-of-2016/franchises/2016-in-review/
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com
Jan 16, 2017
Welcome to the second episode of the Manage Mental podcast. A weekly discussion on hot topics in the music biz for the up and comers, the brand newbies, the beginners and aspiring rock stars of tomorrow.  Let us help you uncover some of the mystery that is this competitive business of rock and roll. 
 
 
Hosted Mr. Blasko (www.mercenarymanagement.com) & Mr. Mike Mowery (www.outerloopmanagement.com)
 
Today we cover the Digital Music News article written by Sahpreem A. King, a multi-platinum music producer, DJ, and author of several industry books - How to Find a Skilled, Professional Music Manager to Guide Your Career
 
We cover topics like what does a manager actually do and how to find a good one that will compliment your career path.
 
http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2013/10/16/themanager/
 
Here are some points that we discuss!
 
Having the right manager or management team is critical to the success of every artist. 
 
No single person, outside of the artist of course, is responsible for making dreams of success turn into reality, building a brand, and business around the artist than a manager.  What’s more, a manager should be the most trusted person or persons within your camp.  In some way, they are the CEO of the brand, which is YOU!
 
I think it is foolish to represent yourself, regardless of your experience or education level.  The reason is simple: when it comes to themselves, most people are unable to be objective.
 
The Duties of an Artist Manager
 
The official definition of a manager is someone who handles the business aspect of your musical career, whether you are a solo artist, DJ, band, or producer. Artist managers serve as intermediaries between the artist and the music industry. In many cases, managers are responsible for procuring artist’s record and publishing deals, songs to record, shows, producers to work with, and other career advancing opportunities.
 
Signs of a Good Artist Manager
 
Here is what you should be looking for in your potential manager:
 
should have a degree in music business, an MBA, or years of experience as a former music executive or successful artist.
 
should have an office wall lined with platinum awards of the current or recent artists he or she has represented.
must have an intricate understanding of the music industry. Especially contract and intellectual property law, deal making, publishing, royalties, booking, touring, accounting, and marketing and business planning.
 
must at least have a business card (I kid you not), a legal business address, a client list (verifiable of course), and a detailed plan as to how they are going to take you from zero to “Guitar Hero” in a reasonable amount of time.
 
We encourage you to send in any questions / comments you may have for us and the podcast and you can email me at AskBlasko@Gmail.com.
 
 
Follow Blasko on Twitter and Instagram: @Blasko1313
Follow Mike Mowery on Twitter and Instagram: @mikeoloop
 
Get Mike’s "Music Management Primer - The Business of Being an Artist” at OuterloopCoaching.com
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