Thursday, June 21, 2012

Distrophonix Now Offers Mixing!

As many of you already know, Distrophonix is well known and recognized for its amazing Mastering services.  Matter of fact, our Head Engineer, Bryan worked on a track that was nominated for a 2011 Grammy, and Distrophonix won the 2012 Best of Baltimore Award for best music company.  With the success of our online mastering, it seemed only natural that we expand our services to include mixing. 

Mixing is not really a new service for us, but this is the first time we are offering it online to everyone.  We have been providing quality mixing services for Baltimore/Washington area musicians for the past 5 years.  This is a very exciting moment for us to now be able to offer mixing services online.

As always, we here at Distrophonix believe in putting musicians before profits.  With that philosophy in mind, we are offering full song mixing for as low as $30 a song.  Please take a moment to check out our mixing page to learn more.  We look forward to taking your recordings to the next level!

Monday, March 12, 2012

How to Choose a Recording Studio

As an artist, your choice of recording studio to capture your art is a vital decision. There is a fine balance when choosing a recording studio between quality and cost. Use the tips in this guide to find a quality recording studio that will help you get the most for your money
Ask around. Networking and talking to other artists is the best place to start when looking for a studio. This will give you an idea of what different studios offer from an artist's perspective. Ask to hear what other artists have recorded at different studios.
Listen to some work recorded at different studios. This will give you a good idea of what a studio is capable of producing. Listen to the music in some different systems that you are familiar with, such as your home stereo and your car, and listen for the differences of quality. A good recording should sound good in every system, mono or stereo.
Visit the studio to see if you feel comfortable there. One of the most important, and often overlooked, aspects of a recording studio is the vibe you get. If you cannot feel comfortable because the studio is dirty, not well lit or just not to your taste, it is going to be difficult to perform a quality recording. Check out the different rooms in the studio to see if they sound good.
Consider the quality of the studio's equipment and personnel. Good equipment will help you get the best possible recording so do your research on the gear that the studio offers. This can include gear like microphones, preamps, interfaces and external processing gear. A good engineer is even more important than the gear. A good engineer can create amazing sounds from average equipment so be sure to consider the quality of the person hitting the buttons and not just the gear the buttons are on.
Set a budget. This is the trickiest part of the process. Big, professional studios can offer world-class gear with engineers who have decades of experience with numerous awards, but all of this comes for a price. There is no set price for what recording costs, which means that there is some negotiating room at most studios. Don't try to bite off more than you can pay for though.


Sunday, February 26, 2012

10 Things You Can Do To Book More Shows!

1. Create a YouTube channel for your band.

Upload a live performance video on YouTube that represents your band at its best. Include a phone number and e-mail address too, so that anyone who wants to book you can contact you easily. Say something like “Contact ________ to book us for a live show.” To show professionalism and interest, try your best to respond to every inquiry within 48 hours.
2. Print up nice business cards

…with your band name, links to your music, live videos, and a phone number and e-mail address that can be reached for booking purposes. Also, include a link to your website so they can learn more about you. Wherever you go, tell people who you are, how good you are, where you are playing next and how easy it is for them to book you directly. A little shameless self-promotion here and there can go a long way!
3. Go watch other bands that sound like you.

If there are any bands in your area with large followings, get out to a couple shows and become friends with other bands. Ask the bigger bands to let you open for them, maybe in exchange for some kind of help like designing a website, flyer, banner, etc. The harder you work for a band bigger than your band, and the more respectful you are to them and their efforts, the more likely they will consider you for an opening slot. Talk up how good your band is not why you are better than some other bands in the area.
4. Tell your fans how easy it is to book you.

Wherever you play – the street, house party, club or major venue, make sure your fans are aware that you’re willing to play anywhere. Use the Live Music Machine’s booking and calendar widget. Put it on your Facebook page, MySpace profile, personal web site, etc. and tell your fans to go there and book you for their private events, house parties, etc. After playing a gig, you should walk around the audience, engage people, ask them what they thought of the show, and let them know you are available to play live anywhere they want you too. Telling them that will definitely help you stand out from the pack.
5. Get guerilla.

Set up wherever there is a crowd of people who might like your music and play for them. Club, high school, venue, and stadium parking lots. How many tailgate parties do you think would love some free entertainment? Play outside clubs where bands are playing that fit in with your style of music. Those people waiting in line are going to be bored, so playing a spontaneous gig right on the spot will definitely make an unforgettable impression.
6. Don’t forget the old school.

Hand out flyers and post cards at events that have a link to free stuff and a way to book you for a gig.
7. Network with key industry people at events and conferences.

Radio PD’s and DJ’s, club owners, band managers, label executives, and others all attend music conferences quite regularly. Say hello to these people, maybe buy them a drink or dinner, but don’t make a nuisance of yourself. Respect their space and don’t try shoving a CD in their face two minutes after meeting them. Introduce yourself casually, let them know who you are and where they can see you play. If’s it’s a club owner, tell them you would love to come in during the day and do a free audition for a free gig. Just make sure you can get a place to sell your merchandise if you nab a gig. Offer to play at places that may not always host live music, like restaurants, coffee shops, stores, and malls.
8. Get creative.

Write up a proposal and present it to the appropriate person at your local school board, offering to do a series of free shows to raise money for the school athletic or band program. Ask to perform during a school assembly when they can provide you with a built-in audience.
9. Find places where bands similar to yours play.

Use Reverbnation’s “Gig Finder” to figure out where bands are getting booked in your area. However, e-mailing clubs with your RPK or EPK usually won’t get any results, because many of these venues have yet to claim their venue pages on ReverbNation. Instead, after finding some good places, print out your press kit and mail it to them, or better yet, personally drop it off it in a nice professional package along with a CD to any decision maker at the club. Follow up with a call within a couple of days so you stay fresh in their minds. If the decision maker has an assistant, get to know that person and you will find that it will be much easier to get in the door. If you email them anything at all, make it your MySpace link along with a concise paragraph stating why they should book you. For some reason, most clubs still feel most comfortable checking you out on MySpace, so play by their rules.
10. Do a gig swap!

If you have a respectable following or are an up and coming band, use sites like and to trade and share gigs with other bands who might want to break into your market. Collaboration is key to success in today’s fragmented music industry.

BONUS TIP! Everywhere you go, wherever you play, whomever you talk to about your band… collect as many e-mail addresses as you can. E-mail is still one of the best ways to communicate directly with your fan base, and develop long-lasting relationships.


Friday, February 10, 2012

How To Get More Fans To Shows (more or less)

Have you been playing gigs and not getting tons of fans to your  shows? Have you been searching the internet for an answer and only  finding things that don't work? Yes, get a myspace page, get a facebook  page, send out e-mails, spam craigslist, tweet, pretend to be cool, and  kiss Bill Gates. That doesn't really work. Here is some other stuff that  no one ever tells you about (that won't work either.)

WARNING These methods below should not be used under any  circumstances unless you want your band to have even less people show up  to your gigs.

Music- You need to have a  band that is playing at least 'tolerable' music. The music does not  have to be great but it shouldn't annoy anyone. As long as you are not  annoying the heck out of everyone; the music is secondary. People going  to shows don't listen to your music anyways. They are just there to get  drunk and
try to dance. Your job is to make people look better to a  person of the opposite sex, so that they can try to take them home. Loud  music will reduce the amount they have to talk to each other. Less  talking mean less chances to sound like an idiot.

Invite your friends to your shows- If you have not been inviting your friends to your show... START NOW. If  you don't have any friends, find some or buy some. Making up friends is a  great idea but since invisible people never pay the cover charge, do  this sparingly.

Go To Other Shows- This  is the most important things. You should be going to at least one show  put on by other local acts every week. Introduce yourself to the band,  bring a hand bill for your next show and give it to each member of the  band (we'll get into hand bills in a second). Most local bands go see  other local bands. If you make it a point to go to other local shows,  well, they will come to yours. During their show it is a good idea to  clap loudly after every song screaming your bands name. Be sure to make  eye contact with the band's lead singer. Stare him down. He needs to  know you mean business. Sometimes other bands will sense weakness and  steal your fans. You are there to steal fans and they cannot stop you.

Hand Bills- For each show  print up 100-237 handbills. You should be able to fit four on a regular  piece of paper. Print them up at home! Really cheap. Or bring them to  Kinko's and pay way too much. Go to a website that offers free digital pictures ( and use one of the public domain pictures.  Download the picture to your computer and edit it in your picture  program. Then just place text with the info of your show on the  handbill; date, time, band name ETC. if you are not any good with  computers then you should really learn. I mean, these things will be  running the country pretty soon. Have you read 1984? NO?!?!?! You need to read 1984.... or if you are dumb, watcha matrix movie.

Posters- Don't go crazy  with these. Three to five for each show are more than enough(make sure  to put one at the club and one at your work and one at your parents  house). Unless you are a known band already, no one is going to see your  poster and decide to go to your see your band. you should also make  sure that when you hang up these posters you place them OVER other  posters. People will respect you for that. It shows that you are not  intimidated easily. Also be sure to fasten the posters to walls  securely. Use a strong glue, or spit.

Give away CDs-Wait, but  you want to sell them. NO. NO you can't. Give them away. Now, never do  factory made CDs. You need to get creative. Burn the CDs on your neighbors computer. Decorate them with a sharpie or other ink. You will  also need to put them in a case. NOT A JEWEL CASE. No no no, we are  giving these CDs away. Take a piece of paper and cut it in half.. Now,  fold it in half. This will be your CD sleeve. Put the CD inside it and  staple the upper two corners. Blamo. You have a very cheap CD to give  away. Make sure on this cover you have printed your band name, web  address, upcoming show, home address, Social security number, location of Jimmy Hoffa and a picture of a cut cat doing something silly. Go to a  local show where a band is playing that sounds like yours. Go nuts and  give away a bunch of free CDs. you should also make sure that while at  this show to be as drunk as possible.

How to hand out handbills and CDs-NEVER  just hand something to someone and walk away. You need to make a  connection with them. If you don't make a connection they will not care  what you have to give them and you have just wasted your time. Talk to  the person first. A good conversation starter "boy, this band is good" also, to make them at ease that you are not hitting on them (boy or  girl) mention your significant other immediately somehow in the  conversation. Basically, you are trying to make a quick new friend that  when you give them a CD they will not just toss it in the trash. If you  give a CD to someone and they suddenly seem to not care about what you  are saying... take the CD back, punch them and move on. This world is  filled with too many stupid music haters to waste your time.

E-mail-  Make sure you  have an e-mail list. You should e-mail everyone on this list at least  4-5 times a day. Send them cute pictures you found on the internet or  links to sites that might give them viruses. You should also try sending  everything in Latin. ECCE EN PICTURA!

Source: (We here at Distrophonix love this website, you have to check it out!)

Monday, January 16, 2012

5 Hot Tips For Getting Your Project Funded On Kickstarter!

5 Hot Tips For Getting Your Project Funded On Kickstarter

Kickstarter is without a doubt one of the best ways for an aspiring artist to get the funds they need to record and release an album.  Over the past few years Distrophonix has worked with a number of bands and artists that have used Kickstarter to make their musical dream a reality. 

For those of you not yet familiar with, it is a website that allows your family, friends, and fans to help fund your musical projects without having to give up any of your musical or creative rights.  Instead, supporters donate money to either help make a project a reality because they are a fan of your music, or they donate to win different prizes and gifts provided by you.  This could be anything from a free song to a private concert.  The choice is yours.  The best thing about Kickstarter is that it allows your supporters to donate as little as one dollar to your project. Therefore, each supporter can donate an amount that fits their budget. 

Below, you will find some proven ideas and tips that you can use to get the funding you need for your Kickstarter project: 

       1.  Provide Great Prizes

The most important thing that you need to do to make people want to donate money to your project is to make sure that you are giving away amazing prizes as a thank you for their support.  Here are a few ideas that others have used: 

-Give away a free download of your music.
-Give away a free autographed pre-release copy of the finished CD.
-Give out free tickets to your CD release show.
-Give Credit as a producer on the album.
-Give a “Thank You” in the albums liner notes.
 -Allow a supporter to attend a recording session.
-Personalized messages or recognition in a song, video, or website.
-Offer to give an exclusive private concert to your top supporters.

This is by no means a complete list.  Get creative.  The more interesting the prizes, the more likely you are to get the donations you need.  Just be careful to not give out prizes that will cost you too much money.  There is nothing worse than getting your project fully funded, and then realizing that you are going to have to spend a large amount of the budget on fulfilling your prize obligations.

2.       Get The Word Out

Dedicate time ever day to promote your project on Kickstarter.  This means contacting everyone you know and telling them about your project and asking for their support.  Yes, I mean everyone, even your Great Aunt Myrtle.  Well actually I take that back, not everyone, you might want to avoid contacting that crazy ex who bashed in your car windshield after you broke it off last Fall.

It is important to diversify how you get the word out.  It is without question that you should be using email and your social networks (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) to let people know; but don’t stop there.  Taking the time to pick up the phone or meeting someone in person and asking for their support can be a very powerful tactic to getting the donations you need. 

3.       Make Some Advertising Materials

Whenever you are playing a show, or working on your street team activities you should have some sort of flyer to hand out that outlines what your Kickstarter project is about and gives information about how they can support it.

Another great option for the traditional flyer is to hand out free music download cards to promote your project.   They are cheap; Distrophonix for example will make 1000 cards for as little as $99. These cards are a nice alternative to flyers because it allows you to get your message across while at the same time giving your potential supports a free song to check out.  Download cards are also less likely to be thrown out or discarded.

4.       Promote Your Backers

If your backers are a business, or perhaps another band or artist, do something to help them out in return as a thank you.  Consider doing a Facebook or Twitter post endorsing the company or promoting the other band/artist that offered their support to you.  This is a nice courtesy and it will pay off in the end for you.  It shows your supporters that you are a class act.  Helping someone else out will result in more attention and ultimately more donations to your project. 

5.       Ask For Referrals

Don’t be shy.  There is nothing wrong with asking your current supporters for referrals to others that may be interested in your project.  Remember, they believed in you enough to make a donation in the first place.  They are excited about your project and believe in you.  Give them a chance to help you out further. 

The key with getting referrals is to ask for them.  If you don’t ask, the chances are you will not get them.  This is not because your supporter doesn’t want to help; it is simply because most people do not think about telling their friends about you and your project.  For example, you might say something like the following: 

“I just wanted to take the time to thank you for supporting my project on Kickstarter.  This project really means a lot to me, and it is exciting that it may become a reality. As you know, I need to raise X dollars to make this project happen.  I am X dollars from meeting my goal.  If you could tell your friends that may be interested in my project I would greatly appreciate it.”

All of us here at Distrophonix want to wish you the best of luck with your project!  If we can ever help you out in any way please let us know.  We also want to hear your success stories, and any other tips that you would like to share.  To send us your successes or tips, please email info (at) Distrophonix (dot) com  We look forward to hearing from you!

Written By: Distrophonix