Following your dream can be hard but it’s worth the effort, and it’s not a cop-out to make money from it while you build your career – got to pay the bills.
Whether your aim is to tour the world with your music or just make music with your friends in your free time you can still make money from your talent on the side without selling out your music at the same time.
There are lots of jobs you can do depending on what sort of music you do.
Mixing: Whether at a live gig or in the studio if you know your way around a mixer you’ve got a gig. Lots of bands or venues need someone on sound tech to keep them sounding good and adapt as the gig goes on. Ask around or if you notice a bar that doesn’t have a sound guy, proposition them. The money can be good if you know what you’re doing.
Teaching: Share your talent and help the next generations to create their own – you can even make some money whilst you do it. Music teachers will never go out of fashion and no matter what your area of expertise there’ll be someone out there who wants to learn.
Writing: As creative types a lot of musicians are also good writers, in particular singers. If you have a knack for writing there’s lots of potential to put your skills to use. Papers and news sites are always looking for talented freelancers for stories and articles – you could even do gig and music reviews so you’re not straying too far. I also hear that ghostwriting for other musicians is quite lucrative right now.
Jingles: If you can make music then you can make jingles. Local companies, radio stations, shops… there’s no end to who needs jingles made for them. If you feel you’re up to the task of creating generic-ish songs that fit a certain criteria then jingles could be an easy buck.
Managing: If you’ve had to deal with venues or labels for your music before then you’ll know there’s a certain art to getting the total value of your music. Bands and musicians starting out or just inexperienced could always use a helping hand from someone adept in the industry to make sure they aren’t undercut.
Design: You might have gained experience in designing whether that be album art, gig posters, promotional pieces, branding… anything! If you happen to have gotten quite good at it then share those talents with others, most artists are willing to spend a decent amount to make sure that they have high quality visuals to go with their music.
There are plenty more opportunities out there to make a bit of extra money from the talents you’ve worked hard to acquire. If you have any you want to share let us know them in the comments below!
Spotify have silently launched a new mobile app that is dedicated to exploring and streaming playlists and stations.
Spotify have quietly launched a new app on Android called Stations. The app, called Stations, is an “experiment” according to company that is all about playlists and Spotify stations. They call it “the easiest way to listen to the music you love. Totally free.”
The app features an incredibly simple user interface with the playlists listed in big, bold text and a scroll down menu taking up the top 80% of the screen so you can simply scroll through playlists and stations to find one to play. From the settings you can customise which playlists appear on the app’s homepage so you can select your personal favourites to jump into at anytime. At the bottom of the screen is your player which shows what you’re playing with a progress bar.
The minimised player also has pause and heart buttons so you can do either at anytime. Liking or ‘hearting’ songs is a big part of the Stations app as each like unlocks personalised stations that are better refined by your tastes. With the condensed user interface recommendations are important so that you can easily find the playlists and stations you want to hear.
Strangely whether you’re a free listener or a Premium subscriber you won’t be able to skip tracks, so whatever you’re streaming you have to commit or find a new playlist. Among the thousands of curated playlists and custom-made selections Stations also features Spotify’s personalised playlists for you like Discover Weekly and Release Radar.
The app makes it simple to jump straight into listening to a selection of tunes which will appeal to many of the streaming generation. The app is currently in testing and according to The Verge is only available in Australia. Spotify haven’t commented on the app yet.
Following in the steps of rivals Amazon and Google, Apple’s first step into the realm of smart speakers is approaching launch day.
After Amazon revolutionised tech assistants with the Amazon Echo and Google tried to build that further with the Google Home, Apple are ready to launch their copy for double the price. The Apple HomePod launches 9th February, and you can pre-order it now for the steep price of $349.
The HomePod comes a few years late to the game, Amazon having founded the home speaker market 4 years ago already. Coming so late to the game, and from a brand such as Apple you would think that this must be the definitive home smart speaker but in fact it doesn’t really add anything except a far bigger price tag.
The HomePod does actually boast it’s supposed high-fidelity audio quality using seven multi-directional tweeters and one woofer. Apple opted against using a mid-range driver in their speaker which most home speakers come with but Apple are confident that their quality will be superior. Whether this truly equates to better quality we’ll have to experience for ourselves.
Beyond audio quality the HomePod is a pretty basic smart home speaker with the basic features of it’s rivals. It has Siri built in with multi-directional microphones for voice commands which allows you to play music, get the news, arrange your planner and so on – the usual.
We’ll have to see what the reviews say but Apple’s speaker is almost double the cost of competing smart speakers like Google Home ($129) and the Amazon Echo ($99 or cheaper). Maybe once it comes out everything will make sense but it seems now that Apple are in for a shameless cash grab, and unfortunately it will probably shift good units.
Until it launches, here’s some aggressive brand-vertising:
Apple will be raising the cost of an Apple Music subscription in Hong Kong next month, at the end of February.
Apple have revealed new prices for their music streaming service Apple Music to be changed at the end of next month. Emails sent out to Hong Kong listeners made users aware and allows time for them to cancel their subscriptions if they aren’t happy with the new costs.
The individual Apple Music plan price will rise to HK$58 on Feb. 25, up from the HK$48 currently advertised on the company’s website. Family and Student plan pricing will increase from HK$78 and HK$25 to HK$88 and HK$28, respectively.
Apple didn’t give a reason for the change in price.
Every guitarists dream is to own all the guitars, all of them. This new pedal makes that dream closer to reality… Sorta.
A new pedal is rocking on to the scene which will put the world’s most prestigious guitars in your hands. Well maybe not your hands, but they will be in your ears with the innovative and impressive XT-1 guitar pedal from SIM1.
The XT-1 pedal models the tone of the world’s most famous acoustic and electric guitars from the biggest brands like Fender, Gibson, and Martin. It uses a unique technology called Smart Tone Shaping (STS) created by SIM1. They say STS “allows you to perfectly emulate the tone of any guitar of your choice, allowing you to play naturally, with no latency or digital artifacts”. No matter what guitar you’re playing you’ll have the tone of a world-class guitar.
SIM1 have also designed a complimentary app that allows you to customise the tone yourself and save new presets. The XT-1 comes with 12 of the world’s favourite axes pre-loaded for your use:
- Musicman®️ Axis | neck, mid, bridge
- Fender® Stratocaster® | neck, mid, bridge
- Fender® Mustang® | neck, mid, bridge
- Martin®️ D35 | mic’d
- Gibson® 335 | neck, mid, bridge
- Benedetto® ‘Bambino’ Archtop | neck
- PRS®️ Santana®️ | neck, mid, bridge
- Gibson®️ 175 | neck, mid, bridge
- Gibson®️ SG 1974 | neck, mid, bridge
- Gibson®️ J200 | mic’d
- Gibson®️ LesPaul®️ | neck, mid, bridge
- Fender®️ Telecaster®️ ’64 | neck, mid, bridge
Setting up the XT-1 is as easy as plugging your guitar in and playing a chromatic scale on each string. The pedal will pick up the tone your guitar is outputting it and can then customise the sound depending on what guitar you choose so that it can accurately recreate guitar tones on any guitar.
SIM1 haven’t spoken on when we can get our hands on an XT-1 or how much it will set us back but having just appeared at it’s second NAMM show we’re hopeful for a 2018 launch.