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Category: Tips for Indies

September 4, 2017

Tetrafasi launched ... sort of.

OK, so two important things have happened recently. First, I created a logo for the Tetrafasi project: Pretty cool, hey? Only a full day of work last Friday ... and acoupe of days reflection and refinement ... I had the... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:03 AM | Comments (0)

July 7, 2017

Alive and Alone distribution

Right! Album is in the can. As happy as I am prepared to fight for with the performances, mixing and mastering. Artwork done, based on the Tetrafasi artwork: Note that this is simply the first panel of the Tetrafasi artwork,... More
Posted by Hughie at 1:55 PM | Comments (0)

July 5, 2017

Mixing Alive and Alone - Day 2: Mastering

Hmmmm ... not as bad as it could have been in the cold light of day. Pretty happy with most of the tracks. Suzie and I listened to the whole album at bedtime and I noticed three thigns I wanted... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:23 PM | Comments (0)

July 4, 2017

Mixing Alive and Alone - Day 1

Wow! So that went better than expected - got a first mix of all ten tracks in one day! I put this down to the consistency of the recordings, the use of a mix template, and the simplicity of the... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:02 PM | Comments (0)

July 3, 2017

Mixing Alive and Alone - setup

Right! The time has come to mix this thing ... need to just get it out. I have a bad habit of agonising over the imperfections and wanting to fix things, but after watching Macklemore on the subject, I have... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:18 PM | Comments (0)

August 5, 2016

Australian Songwriters Conference review

In June I attended the Australian Songwriters Conference at Ettalong Beach. It would be an expensive exercise and I knew nothing about the conference but I am trying to develop as a songwriter so I felt the "not inexpensive" fee... More
Posted by Huge at 5:57 PM | Comments (0)

July 6, 2016

Australian Songwriting Conference - song feedback

Well!! A while ago I wrote about the idea of taking my songs and pitching some of them to publishers at the Australian Songwriting Conference. Will write a full review about that experience later (short version: awaesome!) ... but wanted... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:25 AM | Comments (0)

January 23, 2016

Australian Songwriting Conference - opportunity for feedback

A while ago I signed up to attend the Australian Songwriting Conference in Ettalong Beach, NSW in June. I wanted to expand my networks and find new influences and opportunities. It's gonna cost a heap (I'm paying it off) but... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:00 PM | Comments (0)

October 7, 2015

Recording setup

Wanted to share the technical aspects of my recording process ... just for all you nerds and gear sluts. It's not very impressive, I'm afraid ... I'm using Pro Tools 9 on a 2011 Macbook Pro. I have an M-Audio... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:22 AM | Comments (0)

August 29, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - Day 6

Right! Got "Angels" down ... eventually. Still not happy with the ending, but at least it's in the can at close to what I want it to sound and feel like. Gonna take a break for a few days and... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:17 PM | Comments (0)

August 28, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - Day 5

More completed today. Lots more? Well, actually, it felt like a lot but today was compromised by other activities with kids and work and so on. Not as many hours put in, so not as much accomplished. Managed to get... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:53 PM | Comments (0)

August 27, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - day 4

Better progress today. Took yesterday off to think about it (and do some work that pays for my house) and then ripped in today. Got the following in the can: The rest of Simplicity Home Free Raindrops (that took a... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:39 PM | Comments (0)

August 25, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - day 3

Today I started again, recording just the guitar parts. Took longer then expected because I was able to pay more attention to the nuances of what I was doing and didn't like some of what was happening. I used exactly... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:26 PM | Comments (0)

August 24, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - day 2

Got the remaining songs in the can as single-take roughs today. Total of 12 down now. Still not happy with this approach, tho. Cry to Heaven, Simplicity, and When the Angels Came are in the can along with the 9... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:32 PM | Comments (0)

August 21, 2015

Recording Alive and Alone - day 1

OK, so I got most of the songs down as guide tracks to pick them apart. Don't think this was a very useful thing to do - I'm not happy with the results and it took me all day due... More
Posted by Hughie at 5:08 PM | Comments (0)

May 12, 2015

Collaborators ...

Been thinking about who to work with on this multi-album project. Quality producers in Brisbane are few and far between. Magoo mixed my last single, "Budget Crisis" and I learned a heap from him. Great bloke to work with ...... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:30 PM | Comments (0)

April 5, 2015

Stages of album development

Right! Riffing on this concept some more: what are the stages of development that I would have to cover? Seems to me there are a bunch of ways songs get made ... and they all involve collaboration - even among... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:45 PM | Comments (0)

April 1, 2015

Multi-album project - how?

OK, so I got a lofty ambition and launched into a crazy idea and now I have no idea how I'm going to do this. It's just sunk in to me how much work is going to be involved in... More
Posted by Hughie at 5:35 PM | Comments (0)

March 4, 2015

Multi-album setlist

Riffing on this a lot lately. Thinking the setlist will look something like this: Red Hot Simplicity She Don't Want Your Love Raindrops Cry to Heaven When It's Over Forever Mine Home Free Whiskey and History Also wanna get some... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:01 PM | Comments (0)

March 1, 2015

Multi-album project update

OK, so been thinking about this idea a lot. I reckon I can do four versions of the same songs ... start with a worktape and finish with a full production, anything goes sort of thing. About a dozen songs... More
Posted by Hughie at 4:26 PM | Comments (0)

February 25, 2015

Got me an idea ...

Been thinking about the things that songwriters ask me at Wax Lyricals and other events. There's a theme emerging that I think I can help with ... but it's gonna take some doing. :-) People keep asking me about getting... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:11 PM | Comments (0)

November 13, 2014

The trouble with Spotify ....

There's been a stack of discussion about Spotify and its effect on the music industry lately, mainly driven by Taylor Swift's label's decision to withdraw her entire catalog from Spotify, which adds her to the list of acts who want... More
Posted by Huge at 12:34 PM | Comments (1)

April 29, 2014

Turning attention into traction - Mouthzoff column

This is my ninth column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in December. While a network fo highly skilled and motivated people in the indutry is vital, so is the attention of fans. Only they can form a foundation for... More
Posted by DrHuge at 2:21 PM | Comments (0)

March 28, 2014

Independence - the power is in the network - Mouthzoff column

This is my eigth column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in November. This one concerns an essential skill that any business owner - especially an independent artist - needs to develop: networking. You can't do it all yourself, so... More
Posted by DrHuge at 12:05 PM | Comments (0)

February 25, 2014

The art of making enough good art - Mouthzoff column

This is my seventh column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in October. This one aims to help reassure artists that they are already good enough and that they simply need to get there stuff out into the market, seek... More
Posted by DrHuge at 10:53 AM | Comments (0)

January 27, 2014

Beware the trap of fixed ongoing service fees - Mouthzoff column

This is my sixth column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in September. This topic doesn't seem important to a lot of Indies, who just want as much cash as they can get quickly. But it's vital to make smart... More
Posted by DrHuge at 1:42 PM | Comments (0)

December 1, 2013

The technology trap - Mouthzoff column

This is my fifth column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in August. The topic is one that many Indies find confusing and upsetting: technology. If it's all so easy and helpful, why isn't it working for me?  Last edition's... More
Posted by DrHuge at 11:18 AM | Comments (0)

November 1, 2013

Your fan base wants a relationship - Mouthzoff column

This is my fourth column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in July. The topic is one of vital importance to anyone building a career using new music models - because in this environment, he who dies with the largest... More
Posted by DrHuge at 11:08 AM | Comments (0)

October 15, 2013

Review: Jason Blume songwriting workshop - Mouthzoff column

As readers know, I'm a keen songwriter and heavily involved in helping Brisbane songwriters develop and grow. So when the opportunity came up for me to attend this workshop by one of the best, Jason Blume, I jumped at it.... More
Posted by Huge at 11:42 AM | Comments (0)

October 1, 2013

You need fans before you can ask for fan funding - Mouthzoff column

This is my second column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in June. The topic is one that causes a lot of confusion among Indie - fan funding - because they can see it work for others and don't understand... More
Posted by DrHuge at 10:55 AM | Comments (0)

September 1, 2013

You can't lose sales you would never have had - Mouthzoff column

This is my first column for Mouthzoff magazine. It was published in May. The topic is one that I get asked all the time by Independent Musos: should I protect my copyrights and if so, HOW?In 1999 global record sales... More
Posted by DrHuge at 10:41 AM | Comments (0)

August 5, 2013

Writing for Mouthzoff Mag

OK, so some time ago I started writing a monthly column for my good friend Randy G's monthly e-zine. It's a brand new publication aimed at the south-east Qld music scene and I like to support anything that supports local... More
Posted by DrHuge at 5:12 PM | Comments (0)

January 6, 2013

Alive and Alone - stage 1 accomplished

Recorded all the guide tracks today. Happy with that but it's not as much as I'd hoped to achieve. I was hoping to have some of the main guitars down as well.There were several reasons for delays - one was... More
Posted by Huge at 5:00 PM | Comments (0)

September 30, 2011

If I Had Stew - The major label response

Well, I'm gobsmacked! No wonder the major labels are in so much trouble. A complete contrast in the response from two publishers in my pursuit of a simple clearance to record my parody.First things first - credit where it's due.... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:59 PM | Comments (2)

September 19, 2011

If I had Stew - Update 2

Still no word from Sony, despite me following their advice. However, I did get a response from tomas at Maratone on 14 Sept. He very kindly told me that I need to get in touch with Kobalt Music Publishing, who... More
Posted by Hughie at 8:31 PM | Comments (0)

September 3, 2011

If I had stew

I like to think I'm a pretty funny kinda guy with an ear for satire, so since I first heard Adam Lambert's "If I had you" I've known it would be dead easy to rip off. I've been playing with... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:26 PM | Comments (0)

July 3, 2011

Next chapter

Well, I've been absent from this blog for far too long. What I've been doing, however, has (hopefully) set up the next chapter of my life, which will see a lot more action around here. At long last, the PhD... More
Posted by Hughie at 1:01 PM | Comments (0)

June 17, 2011

Free is just one form of convenient

Lately I've read several articles providing "the artist's side of the story" as to why music "can't be free". These include: Mark Mulligan's Why Music Can't Just Be Free: The Artists' Side Of The Story, Rick Chazan's On Music Piracy,... More
Posted by DrHuge at 10:53 AM | Comments (0)

February 1, 2011

It's all about engagement ...

This morning there are some great articles in various other publication that point to something I've been thinking about for a while now: building a career as an Indie is all about directly engaging with people who like what you... More
Posted by DrHuge at 11:49 AM | Comments (0)

August 4, 2010

Responding to a reviewer

Found this review of my E-book. So happy that someone has engaged with the ideas!! Actually, I'm honoured that although Jillian disagrees with the central premise of Part 1, she still wants to read Parts 2 and 3. Working on... More
Posted by DrHuge at 1:00 PM | Comments (1)

August 2, 2010

Review of Music Xray's S2O service

I read about Music Xray's S2O service in a LinkedIn forum and thought "what a great idea" so I signed up and entered The Genre Benders' album into the system (free). The "matches" the S2O system produces are based on... More
Posted by Huge at 12:57 PM | Comments (4)

July 29, 2010

The best New Music approach is holistic

Mike Masnick makes a lot of sense when he points out that big concerts are only a fraction of the live concerts staged,and in some ways they are more difficult to run profitably than smaller concerts. He's also right that... More
Posted by DrHuge at 10:25 AM | Comments (0)

July 28, 2010

How the record industry got it so wrong (and how their mistakes point to your glorious musical future).

OK, well the E-book is out. I have completed Part 1 with the assistance of the incredible art of Mr Darren Fisher. The blog version is here and free but a more convenient version can be downloaded for free... More
Posted by DrHuge at 4:04 PM | Comments (0)

July 20, 2010

How NOT to impress music-business decision makers

Just read this blog from my colleague Rick Goetz. Rick advises musos to do three things at music industry conferences: Find like-minded peers Make sure you and your product present well Have a plan He's spot on, but I'd take... More
Posted by Hughie at 12:40 PM | Comments (1)

June 6, 2010

Never a truer word spoken ...

Just read this rant from Street Carnage, which points out the brutal reality of playing in bands and advises people not to. Can't say I disagree, ironically. Life on the road can be boring, but it's also an opportunity to... More
Posted by Hughie at 6:00 PM | Comments (0)

June 3, 2010

16 Answers from an Entrepreneur and Freelancer

Just read Seth Godin's latest. As always, brilliant in its insight and thought-provoking in its focus. He posed some questions that seemed highly pertinent to the space I'm about to enter, so I thought I'd answer them with respect to... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:00 PM | Comments (0)

May 18, 2010

Breaking an act ...

Just read this post from Mike McCready. I like the way Mike thinks about a bunch of things, but I think he's on slightly the wrong track with this one. To start with, the whole notion of "breaking" and act... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:00 AM | Comments (0)

August 2, 2009

Seth Godin on the value of social networking

The lessons of Tila Teqila in 2 minutes … http://www.brandinfection.com/2009/08/01/seth-godin-on-social-networking/ Great stuff and so important for indie musos to understand. Seth's talking about business, and Indies need to understand that that's what they are if they want to make a... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:04 AM | Comments (0)

July 17, 2009

Reznor's latest advice ... another beauty

Techdirt has another gem from Trent Reznor. Advice for indies on how to run their business. It's fairly general advice, but pretty good. Some of the comments provide interesting additional advice and so on. Rather than just report this, I... More
Posted by Hughie at 4:44 PM | Comments (0)

December 11, 2008

Hypebot's top Music 2.0 posts

Hypebot has posted a summary of their best Music 2.0 posts of 2008. It's got some really good stuff in it. Very important in years to come, I'm sure. Check it out, read their literature and get into the resources... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:36 AM | Comments (0)

November 26, 2008

"Debunking the Long Tail"?

The Register published an article some time back about new research that claims to "debunk the Long Tail". It takes a critical mathematical approach mainly to the precise shape of the curve - is it a Pareto curve, as Chris... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:26 AM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2008

What it means to do it the hard way

John Watson had a lot of gems at the Big Sound conference, but on the "big industry" panel he addressed the issue of getting signed and whether that meant anything in the new environment. He and the others gave several... More
Posted by Hughie at 3:24 PM | Comments (0)

September 23, 2008

The most important ingredient for success

One of the most compelling, thoughtful and thought-provoking panellists at Big Sound 2008 was John Watson of John Watson Management. He's the guy who signed Silverchair, among others. John was the most aware and articulate person I've ever seen at... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)

September 20, 2008

Where we come from

At the "Managing your own release" panel at Big Sound 2008, Danny Rogers, manager of Gotye, Clare Bowditch, Litlte Red and Temper trap, among other things, was discussing how artists can build networks and find other people to help them... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:55 PM | Comments (0)

September 18, 2008

Making a pitch to the punters ...

At one of the final session of the Big Sound 2008 conference, entitled "Managing Your Own Release", Carlo Santone from Blue King Brown made a great point about the way entertainers should think about their interactions with the music-buying public.... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:40 PM | Comments (0)

June 24, 2008

Musowiki turns 100

Yesterday I put the 100th entry into Musowiki.net. There are now 114 entries. This is wonderful progress and I am so happy about it ... but there's a long way to go before it becomes a really useful resource. The... More
Posted by Hughie at 2:24 PM | Comments (0)

May 30, 2008

My version of a Free Song Strategy

I've not been an avid reader of Bruce Warila - but I like what I do read. Now Bruce has enunciated (almost) exactly my thinking on the best way to "give away" your music. This is a brilliant and very... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:49 AM | Comments (0)

May 28, 2008

10 Best Practices of Online Music Promotion

Just found this list by Nancy Baym of 10 best practices for online promotion. Nancy is a professor at Kansas U and has been studying fans culture and fan behaviour for a while now. She has some great ideas and... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:22 AM | Comments (0)

May 27, 2008

The power of radio

Anyone who doubts the importance of radio airplay in establishing your value as a musical performer needs to take a long, hard look at the APRA awards. The nominees for Song of the Year are all big radio hits, as... More
Posted by Hughie at 12:26 PM | Comments (0)

May 25, 2008

Meeting the millenials

Interesting report released by Music Tank last week called "Meet the Millennials". It's written, at least in part, by Nettwerk's Terry McBride, so it's certainly worth reading. Now, I'm always highly skeptical of anything that makes broad claims about the... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:32 AM | Comments (0)

May 23, 2008

The best advice you don't have to buy

Derek Sivers has just released his manifesto for being heard. Derek has long agreed with the view, which I believe was first expressed by Cory Doctorrow, that the enemy of the unsigned artists is not piracy, but obscurity. This is... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:09 AM | Comments (0)

May 12, 2008

Myspace has very little to do with it ...

The other day I read this interview with Ingrid Michaelson, which is billed as revealing how MySpace can help musos "make it" on the same scale as Ingrid has. Since I found the article via Myspace For Musicians, I think... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:35 AM | Comments (0)

January 26, 2008

How to form and run a rock band

Just found this resource via an e-mail list. It looks like a pretty cool heads-up for the muso who wants to get started in playing in a band, or whose wondering (as we all do) what went wrong in their... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:19 AM | Comments (0)

January 9, 2008

The "musical middle class"

Over at Hypebot there's been an interesting discussion going on about the idea of a musical middle class. This is the idea that more acts, bands and/or artists are now making a living from music than ever before. They may... More
Posted by Hughie at 12:38 PM | Comments (0)

January 8, 2008

Another great summary

Seth Godin has been raking over the entrails of the music industry figures from 2007 and has come up with some lessons from recent experience. I'm not convinced about some of them or the order in which they're placed ...... More
Posted by Hughie at 8:14 AM | Comments (0)

January 7, 2008

A great summary ...

Just found this post by Ian Rogers about how new technologies have changed the music industry. It's a fantastic summary of the impact (or not) of the new environment. Complete, thoughtful, insightful. You have to read it and understand it... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:46 AM | Comments (0)

December 28, 2007

Being not boring

I was at the Art of Record Production conference at QUT last week and listened to Hank Shocklee talk about the creation of Public Enemy. It's an amazing story and Hank was very open, frank and forthcoming about the music... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:02 AM | Comments (0)

December 21, 2007

Coke or Moonshine?

David Byrne, formerly of Talking of Talking Heads, had a great piece published in Wired, in which he examines the future of the music industry and maps out some strategies for independent artists. Packed with real data and analysis, it... More
Posted by Hughie at 8:59 AM | Comments (0)

November 6, 2007

Giving music away or making it available??

An interesting point came up on the MusicThoughts list yesterday and it peaked my interest - especially in light of an article from Andrew Dubber that I'd read earlier. Here's the original meme and my response: >> When you give... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)

October 28, 2007

Music files may be abundant, but listener value and attention are still scarce.

Just came across this Techdirt article, in which Mike discusses the economics of abundance and therefore the virtues for an artist/band of making music available for free. This is an example of slightly muddled and mistaken thinking but before I... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:17 AM | Comments (0)

October 25, 2007

7 Stupid Mistakes

I found this yesterday. The e-book is not bad and you can get it free if you tell four other people about it. It's called "The 7 Stupid Mistakes People Make Trying To Get Into The Music Business" and it... More
Posted by Hughie at 9:50 AM | Comments (0)

October 23, 2007

Song contests

Coupla years ago a friend of mine won a major songwriting contest in Australia but, much to his frustration, told me that success didn't translate into better fortunes as a performer. Since I heard that story I have been wondering... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:09 AM | Comments (0)

October 14, 2007

Hypebot's 100 Free & Affordable High & Low Tech Music Promotion Tips

I've been following this for a while now and there's some really good stuff in here. Handy, simple and cheap. Of course, not all of them will work for everyone and some of them will not work at all once... More
Posted by Hughie at 7:41 PM | Comments (0)

October 12, 2007

Jmag's best advice ...

Jmag, Triple J radio's print extension, has started publishing its "How to ... " section on a blog. I've not read many of these, but they seem to be packed with a bunch of great advice for indies on various... More
Posted by Hughie at 12:59 PM | Comments (0)

October 9, 2007

Radiohead wrap

This came out of a discussion on MusicThoughts. There's heap of commentary about the new Radiohead approach to releasing albums but I think a lot of people are reading far too much into this. The strategy is transparent and ...... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:04 AM | Comments (0)

September 28, 2007

Keeping fans' interest

At IMC, one of the more unexpectedly interesting perspectives came from David Cooper, who's an accountant. He specialises in making stuff to help artists at the back end - the accounting and management jobs that most artists struggle with. We... More
Posted by Hughie at 1:46 PM | Comments (0)

September 27, 2007

How to stand out in the crowd

Jim Fetzer was great for a quote at the Independent Music Conference. At one stage we were discussing the difficult issue of how a band can get people to notice them in this world that is flooded with acts doing... More
Posted by Hughie at 10:15 AM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2007

Have the confidence to be rejected

Got this one from Derek Sivers' website. Derek's an incredible guy who I had the honour to meet a couple of Big Sound Conferences ago. He knows what it takes to be in independent artist and delights in helping indies... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:46 AM | Comments (0)

September 25, 2007

Keep your eyes on the prize ...

James Fetzer, fetzer music management, covers, covers bands, covers songs, originals bands, original songs, covering songs, playing covers, independent music, independent artists, independent musicians, original music More
Posted by Hughie at 2:12 PM | Comments (0)

September 24, 2007

Confidence to be rejected

Got this one from Derek Sivers' website. Derek's an incredible guy who I had the honour to meet a couple of Big Sound Conferences ago. He knows what it takes to be in independent artist and delights in helping indies... More
Posted by Hughie at 5:46 PM | Comments (0)

Why should people care??

Jim Fetzer has a unique approach to managing Indie bands ... or any band, for that matter. He has an interesting take on life. But in one of the IMC07 panels, he made the point that for all the new... More
Posted by Hughie at 11:21 AM | Comments (0)

September 23, 2007

Words you will never hear ...

At the IMC07 I attended a session on song arrangement run by Lawrence "Gelboni" Gelburd. It was very informative. He basically just showed us how he had re-worked a song by a band he was helping. The song was already... More
Posted by Hughie at 5:00 PM | Comments (0)

September 18, 2007

The Big Picture

Independent music conference, IMC07, independent music, tips for musicians, tips for artists, tips for independent musicians, tips for independent artists, help for artists, help for musicians, how to become an independent artist, independent music career, music business, music industry, independent music business, independent music career More
Posted by Hughie at 1:46 PM | Comments (0)
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