Is Your Music Ready To Be Pitched?

Posted by Aaron Davison on Thursday, April 10, 2014 Under: April 2014

Let’s face it.  There’s a lot of music out there.  It seems like everybody either is a “musician” or knows someone who is a “musician” these days.  Recording technology has become so affordable that a lot of people are “throwing their hat in the ring” when it comes to making music.  For the most part, this is a great thing.  The barrier to entry has become much lower when it comes to making and selling music and is allowing many musicians that never would have had the opportunity to make music and express themselves, the chance to do just that.

But today I want to address something that’s important to be aware of and something that probably isn’t considered that often.  Besides the increased competition that results with more people entering into the realm of making music, there’s another less obvious result which is the decrease in the amount of time that music consumers and professionals (publishers, supervisors, etc) have to listen to the music that’s being presented.  There’s more and more music being pitched, taking up more and more of people’s time.

There’s a lot of music out there.  Some of it is really great.  Some of it is mediocre and some of it is just plain bad.  But it all takes time to listen to.  Of course, many companies have policies and filters in place to screen music and will only accept submissions from known, trusted sources (managers, publishers, attornies, etc).

But many smaller companies have more of an “open door” policy and will listen to anything and everything that they are pitched.  This is great news for new, unknown songwriters looking to get a break.  But it also means that you are competing with not just all the other great music that is being made, but you’re competing with all the bad music and mediocre music as well.  In other words, you’re competing with music that never had a chance to “make it” in the first place but is still being pitched and listened to.

What’s the point?  The point is that there is a lot of music being pitched that isn’t ready that is “clogging up” the pipelines so to speak, which makes it harder and harder for music that deserves to be heard to find its place in line.

It’s really important that before you pitch your music, that you as objectively as possible determine if it’s actually ready to be pitched.  This is fairly easy to do.  Here are a few things to do prior to pitching your music to industry professionals:

1)    Get opinions from trusted sources – Have other musicians and people who know music listen to your tracks.  Get a few different opinions.  Your mom doesn’t count, unless she’s a musician.  I have a good friend who makes music and he runs mixes by me all the time and I let him know when they’re not quite up to speed.

2)    Compare your music to music that is being licensed – There’s no better way to see where your music stacks up against the competition than by simply listening to it.  Most companies that license music have samples on their websites.  It’s definitely worth checking out the competition to see how your songs and mixes sound in comparison.

3)    Make sure your music is mixed and mastered professionally – It goes without saying that your music needs to be mixed and mastered professionally.  If you’re not an expert in this area pay someone who is.  For a great education on how to mix and master your own tracks, check out the courses I created with producer Gary Gray on how to produce and master tracks for licensing:

4)    Trust Your Gut – Ultimately, you have to trust your gut and intuition when it comes to your music.  If you’re not quite sure if your tracks are “good enough”, chances are they’re probably not.  You’ll know when you hit it out of the park and you’ll be dying to share your masterpiece with the world!

For an in depth education on how to make money licensing your songs in tv and films, check out my program, “The A To Z Of Music Licensing”:

In : April 2014 

Tags: music production  music licensing 
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