• Richard Tracey

NO NO, THERES NO LIMITS…. Or is there?

Something I see mentioned a lot on social media, in relation to independent music creators, is that there is just too much music released and therefore, it’s difficult to wade through all the not so good, to get to the good or excellent.

So, it makes me think, is the easy access to the music creation tools, a bit of a hindrance to the scene, or a gift to people who might not get their ideas out of their head or released to a listener base.

For me, I am not trained in any instruments, but can play the keyboard well enough to create melody and every aspect of the song creation, without relying on loops or samples.

Without a Digital Audio Workstation and access to plugins and virtual instruments, I wouldn’t be able to create what I do and the ease of use, means I can create and do all I need in the box, to a standard I feel is suitable for releasing.

But I can understand the frustration with getting heard and having to do the PR, around the release of a song.

We are just one little fish, swimming in a massive ocean of other little fish, all trying to get a nibble at the tiny morsels of food that are left, after the big fish have taken their share.

I agree that some releases are sub-par, not just from an independent side, but more and more from the mainstream releases, but they have money behind them to get that push, that the indies don’t.

Where some indie artists let themselves down, is taking the general idea beyond what sounds like a demo, to something that would be considered a properly produced track. They might try their best, but the stumbling block comes when they try to get people to listen and those people expect something a bit more polished, so do not go any further - i.e. purchasing or streaming.

But some indie releases are superb, far superior in every way to the monotonous mainstream copycat production line. Although they still fail to get a foothold.

So we are left to fight amongst each other for listeners or buyers, but this is really hard and can sometimes lead to resentment, especially if some artists think that others are getting more interest than they are, even though they are producing the same type of music.

But that is what happens when too many artists are making the same type of music. They saturate that genre or scene, to the point that it puts people off and then make it harder for the next set of artists to get a look in.

The tools for finding new exciting music, are not as great as we are told. Unless the listeners are selecting the right genre etc, then our music is being released into a nothingness, a void of darkness, while it tries to find a flicker of light.

When even Spotify try and fill your playlists with the big guns, when you have intimated you have no interest in them, then you know the game is rigged and the artists and music that should be showcased, is not getting that chance.

So how do we fix this?

Unfortunately I cannot see an answer. I have thought about this a lot. I don’t think paid PR works at a low level. It can cost hundreds or thousands for a short PR campaign, but that money is never recouped and it feels like the artist is just shelling out hand over fist to be heard, but the compensation does not allow for this to be sustained.

Coming together as a community is an idea bandied about a couple of years back. In theory it could work, but would need the dedication from all involved, which includes the consumer.

This is something I like the idea of, but in practice I cannot see how it can work. Cliques form and some might just be out to promote themselves, over everyone else and that is where it fails and don’t get me started on the gatekeeping!!!

I can understand why some artists call it a day and stop releasing music. This is meant to be a fun thing to do, but everything that comes with it, can take its toll and leads to stress.

When even some of our idols struggle against the might of the mainstream dollar, then is it hard to believe that we also don't stand a chance.

People say that touring should help, but not every artist is able to do this and given how things have been recently, not many concerts are taking place.

I know this might all sound a bit pessimistic; but I do hope that we can all get a chance to be heard and I will keep trying to come up with a solution to the question how.

So there are no limits to creating music, but I believe there are when it comes to getting heard and getting recognition for the music.

Making music as easily as we can now, has its ups and downs. The up is anyone can do it. The down - well, everyone can do it. This just means hundreds of thousands of songs are released every day, but how many of them are really strong enough to compete?

Only you can answer that question.

Till next time dear reader.


R x

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