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Music Business - Artist, Team and Branding

In order to understand the music business, you must familiarize yourself with the various roles each member of a production team has and exactly what the process entails.

Attempting to be the “all-in-one” artist/manager for reasons only known to the artist, can prove to be overbearing and inefficient. If a brand or product is being fully entrusted, then success is an ultimate outcome. Therefore, under these pretenses, exposure, financial stability and solidifying a platform are of no concern, leaving the better part of your energy spent focusing on the art of music as opposed to the stress of distribution negotiations, not to mention the negative, legal side of the music business that deals with infringements.

It’s important to trademark your brand in order to further protect your music as an artist, that being said music and branding go hand in hand.

Aside from the music itself, the business side of the music industry is an extremely involved aspect and can seem daunting for novel artists. At the very least, an artist must appoint an artist manager/music agent to deal with marketing, promotion and gigs as well as the contact information for a lawyer for negotiating contracts and making deals. A lawyer is also required to handle any copyright infringements that an artist may or may not experience, also in place to protect the identity of an artist or brand.

This will ensure you have man-power at all other areas of the music industry as an independent artist allowing you to do what you love without external pressure.

Artist managers will take a cut of the distribution deals that are made while the lawyer is on an hourly-rate basis as they are primarily needed for occasional formal matters concerning copyright and contracts.

Production teams can often be very extensive that include a number of roles contributing to a single production. For instance, an entire production team can consist of artists, songwriters, singers, composers, performers, producers, engineers, music agents, artist managers and lawyers. These projects tend to be multi-million dollar projects in which finances are well endorsed. For the well-rounded producer, a team of at least 3; one artist, one artist manager, and one will likely be the best setup for novel artists breaking into the music industry.

Since the introduction of the digital distribution, copyrights and infringements have become just a little more involved due to the popularity of thousands of independent music libraries and services.

Before digital technology in music, the only way to own a copy of the song was to have a physical product you could play on an audio system such as a record, tape player or for a brief period of time, the CD. The musical idea, also known as intellectual property, is what created the physical property, the CD. Physical copies of musical compositions were easier to distribute in a controlled and profitable way, but, with the development of digital technology in music, a musical composition can be easily pirated for no profit to the artist at all and distributed wherever pleased. With digital technology, there is no need for the physical property to bridge the gap anymore as artists can simply create musical ideas with nothing but a computer and distribute without even creating a hard copy. This development in technology has now forced record labels to favour exclusive distribution deals where only they have legal copyrights over the song.


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