Did you know that forming a rock band is almost the same as any other entrepreneurship venture? Throughout my career as an artist, I have developed many connections in the music world, and have been fortunate to see the process of forming a rock band, from beginning to end. What I noticed, was that many of the steps followed, were either the same creative process for any other artist, which we mentioned on our previous article, or the same failure-proof procedures that succesful entrepreneurs have followed and perfected, which is what we will be discussing in this article.
Young entrepreneurs are all the hype currently in the United States. Google Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour to learn about some of the greatest young entrepreneurs, or browse the stories of the founders of google, yahoo, or paypal. If you read closely, you’ll notice that their stories are pretty similar to the ones of Roger Waters, John Lennon, or Kurt Cobain. Many of the “Rock Star” traits are the same found in succesful entrepreneurs. But, what are these traits? Discipline. Perseverance. Stubbornness. Patience. You don’t even need social skills!
In the article before, we discussed the basics of the creative process when creating a rock band. Therefore, by now you should have a media kit, a defined sound, a name and a few home recorded mp3’s, or at least the understanding of what it all means.
The internet is your best friend:
Just as if creating an entrepreneurship business, what you will need next is very simple: a Facebook Page, a twitter account, and a website or blog. This is to immediatly begin spreading the word about your band. Create a hand-drawn logo or design one on Photoshop, or take a picture that’s meaningful and represents your concept, and post it as your main picture in all these social media networks already mentioned. Then, get your support system to join… your lover, your best friend, your doctor, your mother. The more, the merrier. This will not only serve to start spreading the word on the streets about your existence… If you get a good following, it will be useful in the negotiation table, when signing a record deal, to say that you already have a good quantity of followers.
Then. Go online and browse for cheap pins, posters, postcards, t-shirts and other products that you can sell either online (get a paypal account to make immediate money) and post it on your networking sites for your street team to acquire. This step will get others to want to be a part of your movement, be proud of wearing your products, and sharing it with their friends… but they will also serve as walking banners for your band. ONE MORE THING: Open up an e-mail account with the name of your band, which you will use for ALL the communication between your bandmates, your fans, and your friends.
Go to your local book store and get a few books about copyrights, legal information for musicians, and rock bands that you admire. I recommend “This is Your Brain in Music” by Daniel J. Levitin. If you’ve read it, you’ll understand why music is a serious business too. It has an impact on people. You can become the voice of many.
Rehearse and Promote:
Once you have found your band mates, rent a rehearsal room or set up your garage and begin practicing. Invite school/college/local reporters to your practices, and begin hosting free shows or performing for free at local bars and cafés, but take your new products AND YOUR DEMO everywhere you go.
Something you cannot forget, and this, you will hear from any entrepreneur out there: Do not forget to bring your business cards. Websites such as Vistaprint, offer cheap and quality printing services. If you can’t afford that, make some hand-made cards, or print some at your home or local Kinko’s. But never be seen without them. A business card should list, the name of your band, your name and what you do, the band’s e-mail and site. Nothing else. No phone numbers. This will go to everyone out there. You don’t want random calls at 5 am.
And last, but not least, believe in yourself. Critiques will abound and they will be harsh. But every story of success has a thousand of failures prior to it, so don’t give up. You are now, one step closer, to being the next big star.