First published on September 29, 2019
Rapper and childhood friend Louis V. Lyrix once shared a post from a Virginia-based independent music artist stating you can support a musician with just a $1 purchase on iTunes. This reminded me of every time I’ve heard someone talk about supporting local businesses only to make excuses for not doing so when given the opportunity.
Remember this quote:
“Vote with your dollar.”
– doortodoorgeek of Podnutz
But you don’t always have to pay to support musicians. So, as an independent musician, let’s break down five ways you can support local indie musicians.
1. Listen to Their Music
Again, you don’t have to pay-to-play for an artist to profit, although many prefer it.
- YouTube Topic Channels like Jt Spratley – Topic are managed by the distributor – e.g. Horus and Soundrop – and always monetized. I share these most because it’s the easiest option. Anyone can visit YouTube, but ad blockers affect profits.
- Spotify has seemingly overtaken Pandora as the most popular streaming app and uploads are usually monetized. But you need an account.
- SoundCloud can monetize tracks if artists insert their ISRC and UPC. No, you can’t see when artists do this. But each play increases popularity and others’ fear of missing out.
The point is plays matter, especially with algorithms deciding what’s trending. It doesn’t take much to click and listen to 3-10 minutes of art created by someone you care about. If it isn’t your preferred genre (which can lead to a discussion about constructive criticism) …
2. Share Their Music
The music industry is crowded, so networking is everything. Someone in your network would be interested in that song. Share links to their work on social media with initiatives/non-profit organizations (NPO’s) supporting causes in the track – equality, PTSD, LGBT, etc. Follow and Like their artist pages and posts. Again, it costs you no money and little effort. And it does a lot to help the artist.
There’s always someone looking for new music.
Refer Potential Clients
Know someone looking for a music producer, mixer, or remixer? What about a DJ looking for signature remixes (or bootlegs)? Someone having a wedding or party? Connect them.
Refer Other Creatives
Do you know a DJ, graphic artist, painter, photographer, web designer, blogger, singer, rapper, poet, videographer, instrumentalist, gig promoter, or marketing specialist? That includes the girl with the trumpet on the bus, the guy that was in band class, and that friend that “messes with [any musical instrument, coding, or art stuff].” Connect them. This is why I’m active on LinuxMusicians.com.
Creatives will help each other. Help them find each other.
3. Ask Them
Many creatives do more than one creative thing. You’re reading my blog on my website which I designed. Some are YouTubers, freelance developers, Twitch personalities, and the list goes on. The musician may want to direct attention to a specific cause, non-profit organization, or a song about a recent event.
Don’t just vote with your dollar. Vote with your time and energy. And show love today. Someone might not be here tomorrow.