The music industry is more than just a business. It is a community with members ranging from label executives to the sound engineers who mix demos at the recording studio. While their jobs and incomes may be wildly different, the common denominator is the music. As such, the music business is very social and hosts a variety of events and get-togethers throughout the year. Attending these events is a good way to network and meet people who may help promote and advance your career.
For example, look for CD release parties. They are often free to attend and attract label executives who will be on hand to support their artist. Make a point to introduce yourself but always be polite, never pushy or hard sell. Try to strike up a conversation about the business first and give the executive the chance to ask about you. Always get a business card. Then later you can demo in a demo and in the cover letter, mention how nice it was to meet them and you’d appreciate it if they would give your demo a listen.
Become a club rat. Agents, Manager and A&R executives constantly go to music clubs looking for the next big band or performer. Whether you are performing or not, mingle with other members of the industry and talk shop. Listen to what they have to say and use their expertise and knowledge to develop strategies for your own career. And again, get business cards whenever possible.
Volunteering can be a good way to promote your career. The music industry holds many, many benefits and charitable events. Sign up too be a volunteer. Not only will you be doing a good deed in helping out those in need, you’ll be working side by side with other members of the music industry. Remember, today’s assistant or secretary could be tomorrow’s top A&R exec. More importantly, by making yourself known and visible to others in the music industry, you are laying the foundation future professional relationships.
Don’t forget to network with journalists who cover the music industry. They see the business from a unique perspective and can be a valuable source of information. And, a good review by music critics can help launch a career. Being on a first name basis increases the chances the critic will review your act. At that point, it’s up to you to show them and the world what you’ve got.