#NOFILTER: Send Beats Directly To The Artist
With the new 2014 challenge MM issued to all its members of getting a major placement, I came to think about what are ways to maximize the opportunity. NO FILTER! What I mean by this is when we submitting beats for an artist, who are we submitting to? Is it an A&R, the manager, the artist, or is it someone who knows a guy that knows a guy (or gal)? I have a theory that submitting to others, sometimes great beats get lost in the shuffle of opinions and might not get a chance to be heard by the artist.
Opinions are like…well you know the rest, but with beats its all about the preference of the listener. A beat could be dope to one person, then wack to the next. The thing is, as I send beats for artist A, I want the creative person that is writing the song to make the decision if the beat will work or not. Think about it for a second. Its people that probably don’t make beats or are not even in the creative process of song writing telling you that this beat isn’t good enough. THE FILTER!
In the past we all have seen major artist say “Send beats to my team”. Then artist project comes out and the next thing is said that “The production quality was low, producers need to step it up”. Could it be that your team only picked beats that they “think” you want to hear so they filter out the super creative out the box type jam? For example lets say the artist is 50 Cent. Well off top we all can get a vibe of what we think a 50 type beat might sound like. Is that what the team is only presenting to the artist? Is that a safe submission? But with the abstract mind of an artist they are looking for something new. They don’t know what, can’t describe it, but they know it when they hear it! They are the emotional force of creating the next big hit, and most of the time it is not the team.
Then we have 3rd party A&Rs or “Beat Brokers”. These are people that developed their own relationships in the industry and shop a catalog of production for a fee/percentage. Again another filter to go through. But with some of these people they will take 20-30% of advance, take a chunk of your publishing, then on top of that get co-production credit! Crazy! And of course they are going to shop joints that will make them money.
So what do we do? Try to connect directly to the artist. Now lets be realistic also, some major artist are not going to be accessible to where we can walk up to them and hand over a beat cd. Going through the team is probably going to be the closest we will get. But develop your own relationship with them. Be consistent when sending beats. They might not respond after every email but they do see your name in the subject line all the time. And if you have a product that they like, eventually they will respond to do business.
Another great option is to connect with the independent or artist on the rise early. From what I’ve learned that a lot of Idie artist wear many hats. They’re the artist, the booking agent, the manager and pick their own beats. With that already established connect, eventually that artist might get a major deal and you set yourself up to be in the No Filter Zone! lol Funny but true.
Now us as producers we also have to do our part to ensure the best results. Meaning, how is our sound quality? How do we present ourselves while meeting someone? Are we about business or that annoying guy that talks too much s#*t and become socially unpleasant. Even if you have the goods, some people wont work with you regardless. Be prepared. Attend networking events like iStandard, artist conferences, shows, etc. Have USB flash drives with your beats on them. They are cheap nowadays (Radio Shack) and could be more effective in a crowded room when everyone else is passing out bulky cd jewel cases. Shake hands and kiss babies as they say in the political world.
In conclusion these are also my opinions, but I feel with some of these things in mind, you can maximize your opportunities of getting that Platinum Plaque on the wall! Its 2014 and we’ve set the bar high for ourselves. Lets continue to build our brand as producers and strive to be the best!
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5 thoughts on “#NOFILTER: Send Beats Directly To The Artist”
I definitely feel you 110% on this article. I also love what you mentioned about personality and that initial factor involved with actually dealing with someone.
A lot of people miss this point, sadly. I’ve worked a lot within public relations not only in the civilian side but within the military as well and that initial meeting is everything. One thing I can add is to make sure you KNOW about your potential client and always have a suit ready “just in case.”
Our industry fluctuates a lot from region to region and in the event the client wants to change the venue of the meet make sure you are not improperly dressed. This will tie into your delivery. At the least at the end of it all they can see that you take not only your craft but, your personal effects at a meeting serious. Its easy to come down from a formal arrangement vs being underdressed and in the mindset that this is a casual affair having to up-dress.
You never know they might like your sound and be headed to out to eat and ironically you just on the fly got invited to a dinner event with more connections rallied up.
Moral of the whole addendum, just be ready for anything.
Yeah being a peaople is not really a producers strong point. That is why we are producers and prefer the background! But I also think that it can be learned just like a skill. Working on the craft of networking. Constantly attending events can really help ease the nervousness of interacting. For myself the first few events I went to I was nervous as hell!! But once you attend more events, you start to see familiar faces and learn to work the room and be cool
I AGREE WITH REACHING OUT TO INDIE ARTIST ON THE RISE…ITS REALLY HARD TO SHOP BEATS TO AN ESTABLISHED ARTIST. LIKE HOW TO U REALLY REACH OUT? HOW DO U GET THERE ACTUAL EMAIL….SOCIAL MEDIA IS FLOODED WITH PEOPLE DROPPING OFF MATERIAL THESE DAYS…UNLESS U GET DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF THE ARTIST AND HAND TO HAND UR PRODUCT THERE IS NO REAL WAY OF KNOWING YOUR STUFF IS ACTUALLY REACHING THEM…WORKING WITH UP AND COMING ARTIST IS THE BEST STEP. THEY ARE MORE ACCESSIBLE AND WILL REMEMBER U WHEN THEY GAIN A GREATER BUZZ. THE REVOLVING DOOR OF THE INDUSTRY THESE DAYS ITS BEST TO CATCH EM ON THE WAY IN RATHER THAN ON THE WAY OUT. ANOTHER GREAT WAY IS INTERNING AT RECORDING STUDIOS, UR LIKELY TO BUMP INTO AN ARTIST AND YOU’LL BE SURPRISED WHERE A LOT OF THESE ARTIST RETREAT TO WHEN WORKING ON A PROJECT…IT COULD BE THE LOCAL HOLE IN THE WALL STUDIO IN YOUR VERY TOWN. ATLEAST THAT WAS MY EXPERIENCE IN MY EMCEE DAYS BEFORE I TOOK UP PRODUCTION. SHEEK LOUCH RECORDED SOME HIS JOINTS IN A FRIEND OF MINES BASEMENT WHERE I USED TO GO AND FREESTYLE AT…ALL HE KEPT SAYING WAS I WANNA HEAR BEATS…BOY I WISH I WAS PRODUCING BACK THEN I COULD HAVE THROWN ON MY BEAT CD…SO CALL AROUND TO UR LOCAL RECORDING STUDIOS AND ASK IF U CAN JUST COME BY AND SEE HOW THINGS RUN U NEVER KNOW WHO WILL WALK IN WHILE UR THERE.
I love these articles i can’t stop reading them