THE MAKING OF AN ALBUM 101

Copyrights
The first most important thing you want to do as an artists, is to make sure that your album is copyrightwritten especially if you are trying to sell the barcode version. This is fairly simple to do and doesn’t cost much but is essential to protect your music as an artist. You can download the necessary forms from copyright.gov, fill them out and send them in with your album. There is only one time fee for sending in an album or group of songs. If, however you send songs in one at a time, there will be a fee for each submission.

Mastering
When releasing an album, one of the first things you have to do is prepare the audio especially if you are trying to get on the radio. Usually you’ll want to have your tracks peaking at around -3 to -4 decibels. This gives whoever is mastering some room to compress and equalize your songs. Try and have your songs sounding as good as possible before mastering for the best results. Once you have the songs prepared, you’ll need to find a mastering house to master them or you can find such people . This usually consists of compression, equalization, and silence between tracks. Mastering will give your album an overall louder sound and give all the tracks the same volume level. You can find some good mastering houses online. What you have to do usually is send your cd-r to them. Some even do free samples, so you can hear what the difference will be when finished.

Artwork
The artwork is in my opinion, the funnest part. You can do it yourself or hire someone for the job. If you like doing stuff yourself, I recommend you check out like istockphoto.com for some great royalty free photos. They only cost one to three dollars each and look great. Once you have the photos together, get a decent graphics program like Adobe Fireworks to edit them. Find out where you’re sending your cd to be manufactured and check their artwork specifications. This will tell you the exact dimensions that the artwork needs to be. They’ll usually also have templates that you can download and use to get them the exact size. Once the artwork is prepared, you’re ready to send it off for manufacturing. The manufacturing part is quite easy if the prior steps have been taken. Once the album is done and in your hands, you’re ready to start selling and promoting.

Selling
Well now that your album is done, the first thing to do now is get it for sale. Start out at CDBaby.com where it only costs 35 dollars to get going. CDBaby not only sells your cd at their online store, but can also get you set up at several download stores, like Apples iTunes and Napster, to name a few.

Another thing that should be done is registration at ASCAP or BMI. These non-profits distribute royalties for radio play and other usage. If someone plays your song, the radio station tells BMI, and then BMI sends you a check quarterly. It’s fairly simple to sign up and submit your songs for registration. Get those royalty checks coming in.

Promotion
Now the only thing you’re missing is promotion which I shall cover in another article. But this is probably the hardest part and most time consuming part of the album process. Some simple promotion ideas are to sign up at websites like Soundclick, Myspace, Garageband, among many others and give away a song or two. You should also try books like The Indie Bible which lists hundreds of radio stations and other places that will play your music. There’s also sites like MusicSubmit.com that will send your music to publicity outlets to get your name out there. Other than that, you’ll have to get creative and look around.

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4 comments

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous

    This is a fantastic article, a very interesting read and in terms of trying to learn more about the industry; it was very informative. Good job, and thank you.:)

    This is a fantastic article, a very
    interesting read and in terms of
    trying to learn more about the
    industry; it was very informative.
    Good job, and thank you.smile

  • DeSmoothest

    DeSmoothest

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  • DeSmoothest

    DeSmoothest

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    I appreciate the knowledge you just gave me and hope you must sucess!!!!!!!

  • GOD CHILD

    GOD CHILD

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