What we're planning to cover on the podcast...
The idea behind this podcast is that there were loads of things that we wish we had known both before we started our band, as well as while we were in it. We are by no means experts of any kind, we simply love the sharing concept of podcasts and want to build up a library of support for musical artists, whether you are about to pick up an instrument for the first ever time, or you've been at it for ages and are trying to take things to the next level, whatever that level may be. We also want to have some fun doing it and interview some great people.
The following is a completely non-exhaustive list of the types of things that we are thinking of covering. They will range from some basics for those of you just starting out, such as buying your first instrument, bagging your first gig, recording your first song, which we'll progress over time to look at whether bands eventually need to seek management, is getting a deal with a label still the holy grail, how do you manage band finances, book tours etc., along with the wealth of technology solutions out there today that can help (or perhaps hinder) your progress...
Instruments - This can be a minefield. If you spend £1,000 on a guitar will you suddenly sound amazing, probably not, but what is the right instrument for you? With most of the topics we'll cover there'll be no single right answer, but some handy hits can help avoid shelling out a load of money you don't have on an instrument that isn't what you need. I remember the first time somebody asked me what gauge strings I wanted. I can't remember my exact answer, but I was probably fortunate the shop was empty. There's likely to be enough content to have a separate episode per instrument, we'll see.
Accessories - How many pedals do you need? If you're Ben, a massive board full of them. I think they made him feel like at least he looked like he knew what he was doing. In fairness, some of them made some pretty fine sounds. Again, that's just guitars, you can buy any amount of gizmos and gadgets for instruments these days. Are they all worth it?
Recording - At what point do you need to start recording your music? From day one, or once you've got an amazing final product? We didn't have a clue whether we needed to go into an expensive fancy studio, or if it was something we could do ourselves. Do you need your songs mastered, what does that even mean?! It's fair to say that lots of money can be spent when it comes to recording, so having a reasonably well thought out plan is no bad thing. We'll look to give some pointers from those who've been there and got the t-shirt.
Fans - Are pretty darn essential. How you interact with them can be critical to your success. How do you build up a fan base, how do you know who your fans are, what they want, what they like? How often should you chuck content at them? There won't be a single correct answer to any of this, but there sure as hell will be some common errors that a lot of musicians make. We'll look at what they are and how others have built relationships with their fans.
Budget - Nobody (or very few people at least) start writing music or join a band so that they can manage a budget and become an accountant. That said, if you've constantly got more money going out than coming in, what should be an amazingly fun, creative enjoyable activity, can easily become a grind. We deployed a 'band kitty', which was an extension from how we approached going on a night out to various drinking establishments that would have varying drinks prices. Everyone regularly puts a set amount into the kitty, and a form of democracy forms on which pub to go to next, or in the musical context, whether buying a new amp or buying more blank CDs to burn our songs to (yes, CDs were a thing in our day) was the right use of our limited funds.
Technology -This has been changing the music industry, well forever, and is showing no signs of slowing down. Whether it improves the ability for you to record and mix songs, distribute them or get paid, there's a whole host of opportunities that technology enables. We'll talk to people who are deploying some of these new technologies now.
There'll be an absolute mass of other topics that we can and will cover.
If you've got suggestions for a podcast topic, or a guest you recommend we should have on, get in touch at...