So You Want to Be in a Rock & Roll Band? - Article 7 by Sal Canzonieri
Welcome to my seventh column in Loud Fast Rules magazine. This column will be all about being successful in the music business based on my experiences from playing music since 1975. I'm going to be real and no holds barred about every facet of the music biz from the top to the bottom. It's pretty much advice and discussion, what sucks and what is great. I'm going to tell you what other people won't. Feel free to contact me and let me know what worked for you, if you have some good advice for people.
There are many aspects to the music world, and every one of them has things that happen in them that can either totally fuck you up or can be great if things work out right for you. These are: the people in the bands themselves; the booking agents; the promoters of the shows; the clubs, halls, etc.; the lawyers; the recording studios; the record producers; the A&R people; the radio stations and the DJs; the internet and music websites; the music shops that carry supplies and instruments; the record labels; the distributors; the record stores; the merch manufacturers; the music press and the fanzines and newstand magazines; and the audience. So, in each column I am going to talk about one of these aspects and it ain't going to be pretty!

Article 7 - Tim Sweeney / Music Consultant for Indie Bands that are smart

Okay, last issue I give a big summary of all the steps involved in getting successful and popular during your formative years.

From this point on, I am going to write about specific things to do and specific people that are a great help to bands that have started getting somewhere and need to kickstart things into high gear!

Last issue I presented an Moses Avalon, who's books and courses are some of the best around for teaching bands all about the incredible amount of legal issues that are center around being a successful band. His website is:

This issue I want to present Tim Sweeney, someone who for the last 24 years has helped thousands of people and companies around the world accomplish their goals of becoming more successful. Invariably, whatever I have learned about being sucessful in the music business through years of hard rock and the school of hard knocks, I find out that Tim has written about it in one of his books. All the advice I have ever given I have discovered to later see in one of his books! So, we are on the same wavelength, which is why I am recommending serious bands to review Tim's books, take his courses, and use his consultation services. Why recreate all the years of struggle many bands go through, when you can learn from the people who have experienced things first hand so that you can benefit from their insights?

Tim is one of the music industry's most respected independent music consultants in the areas of artist development, record promotion, distribution, and retail marketing. He has worked with over one thousand major label and independent artists (including some of the most successfull of all time) in virtually every musical format. In addition, he is the private consultant to the industry's leading Presidents and CEO's. Since 1996, his free music business workshops (that he presents around the United States at his own expense), have been attended by more than 10,000 artists, musicians, songwriters and music industry professionals each year. Whether in starting or building their business, helping them impact or influence people through their various forms of art (music, books, films, paintings and the visual arts), or bringing about political or social change from new ideas and strategies to the start of new charitable organizations to benefit those in need, to everyone who just wants to get more out of lives and relationships, Tim has helped them with new strategies, ideas, education and has worked alongside of them. His websites are: and

Tim is THE person to go to for complete artist development. Tim is famous for writing with his partners such fantastically useful books as: "Tim Sweeney's Guide to Releasing Independent Records Part 1 and the recent Part 2 version", "Tim Sweeney's Guide To Successfully Playing Live", "Understanding Who You Are As An Artist ", "Growing Thicker Skin: Learning How to Handle Rejection as an Artist", "Using Email Effectively as an Artist or Songwriter ", "INTERNET PROMOTION for Artists, Musicians and Songwriters ", and other books, tapes, and so on.

For example: Anyone in a band today knows that the best way to develop your music career is to release your own record. What is hard to find out is what to exactly do to make your release a success by getting your record played on major college and commercial radio stations, reviewed in key music publications, and stocked in national chain and independent record stores.

But, Tim Sweeney's Guide To Releasing Independent Records is packed with hundreds of money-saving tips, helpful hints, and never-before-revealed secret strategies used by industry insiders. In this book, he will teach how you to set up your own independent record label; make a great-sounding record without spending a lot of money; get quality distribution into major retail chains and indie record stores; design a winning promotional strategy for your release; convince college and commercial radio stations to play your record, and use the exposure generated by your release to bring yourself to the attention of a larger label.

In the Part 2 version of this book, Tim teaches you real information that will help you sell your first 10,000 CDs in your home market and state!

* He presents in detail the strategies of why you need to build your career at home and why it is a critical mistake to promote your music on a national basis too early in your career.

* How to avoid the early trouble spots that can damage your career.

* The importance of getting rid of your press kit for an Artist Profile and how that will help you get more shows, write ups in the press and radio airplay.

* How to find new fans to come to your shows through effective street promotion you can do yourself.

* The secrets to having a web site that can actually sell CDs versus one that just sits there.

* Is a distribution really what you need at this point or a distribution network of stores that will buy directly from you?

In his "Guide to Successfully Playing Live", you can learn how to do all these important things: Decide which clubs and venues are right for you; Where to find your potential fans in each market; How you can play the clubs you want; Get the club bookers to pay you what you want; How to double and even triple your audience at the next show; How to make your live performance better than ever; How you can sell more CDs and tapes at your shows than ever before; and How you can make e nough money playing live to quit your day job.

In his new book, "Getting What You Want Out Of Life", Tim takes you through the critical first steps that will actually help you get what you want right now, not later. He teaches you how to move away from the "limited thinking" that others have instilled in you and how to focus on the things in life that are really important. You learn how to challenge yourself instead of competing with others, why others reject you, and what it really means and what the true meaning of success is to you.

"True lasting music artists build relationships with their fans", that is the number one point that Tim brings out in all his books and courses. He really helps you understand how to keep more for yourself and stop giving away what you make. Obviously in today's vastly changing music business world, there are independent artists that make far more than most major label artists - and the major labels would love to sign them. Today bands no longer have to give up all that great income and sign it away to a record company who will give you practically nothing in return, except maybe some fleeting fame at best. Today bands have many more options thanks to the internet and other ways to market music to fans.

Through his consultation services, which are worth every penny, Tim helps you with the development of new promotion and marketing materials that will make your band much more efficient and effective in reaching your fans, making new fans, and keep your band growing. He personally teaches you how to make the changes that are necessary while working along side of you to bring about the results you are looking for. In essence, Tim will help you develop the strategies and materials you will need to make your vision a reality and actually help you accomplish it by working with you on it.

Not only that, but at Tim's other website he does with John Dawes, , they give tons of great free advice, there you can find great articles with really practical wisdom about engaging your audience, using the internet to your best advantage, and more.


(c) 20067 BGT ENT / Sal Canzonieri