How to stay independent and be your own label: KEEP LEARNING

First things first, this a business. Remember that.

Now do you want to be independent or be signed to a record label?

Regardless, you should be staying up to date and studying the business through and through. One must take on more than just one responsibility. I know your passion might be to rap, but in your beginning phases you will be doing most, if not everything, regarding your music career by yourself. So besides lyricism you might learn how to record yourself or make your own beats. You’ll have to learn things like how to upload your music to distribution services, how to make a album cover video for YouTube, and even how to make your own album covers (all of these things I’ll be teaching you eventually, just hit me up and tell me what you want to know).

There’s so many things that go into a career in the music industry and this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Remember however, that “No Man is an Island.” Meaning, one can’t do EVERYTHING himself. Know what you have a knack for in your adventure of growth and realize that some things you will just have to delegate to other people. For example, I’ve done my own album covers every now and than but the ones my brother does for me are always way better. I’ve come to terms with that the fact that I just am not that good at graphic design.

Peep this, back to the question about being signed. Even if you want to be signed, you should know what the label is going to do for you and they won’t even LOOK at you unless you have built your own fanbase. That’s really all anybody cares about, from clubs, labels, and your own analytics. Having a solid fanbase is crucial. If you do not pull numbers at clubs and you don’t have the guarantee of any sales or streams for a label to see, you have no leverage. Your fanbase is your worth, for lack of better words, if your looking for commercial success. Building or integrating yourself into a fanbase/community is what you should be aiming for because your art is going to be incredible to some people but if they never see it or hear it than they can not become a fan of yours.

When you have a talent and a passion that’s only a quarter of what your actually doing. Most of the time you have to be creating and implementing new tactics to market, promote, and get your brand recognized. What your doing is building a brand. That takes a lot of time and effort and takes a multidisciplinary approach. I mean who knew one day I would be designing clothes?

Always be learning. My goals this weekend are to start writing an e-book and to learn how to make a more Atlanta club Migos type beat so I can either use it or put it up for sale. These are things that are going to require studying but if you stop learning than you have already died.

You have a dream. Now break it down into smaller more attainable goals and achieve them one by one. That’s how you turn a dream into reality my friends.

Until next week,

Much Love,

-Tony Blanko