Welcome to “Asking for a Good friend,” a brand new music recommendation column the place arts directors Rachel Sokolow and Carol Ann Cheung deal with questions on working as a composer or with composers.
After I discovered notation and began composing for mixed-instrument ensembles, I used to be already approach past the frequent age-restricted requires scores. And, now much more, the vast majority of alternatives I see are for “rising” composers (with usually extra standards). I’d love to listen to your ideas on methods to navigate by means of these normal roadblocks.
Expensive Later bloomer,
Thanks a lot for writing along with your essential and topical query, as it’s one thing our discipline is beginning to incorporate inside important conversations about inclusivity. I hear two questions inside your query: 1) the best way to construct a community round your work when now not in a college setting, and a pair of) what the phrase “rising” actually means.
“Rising” might suggest a youthful age vary, however it might additionally check with somebody within the early phases of their composition profession. We undoubtedly agree that it’s time to study how that phrase is utilized and maybe establish one other phrase to explain parameters so that everybody feels welcome to use. However within the meantime, I’d like to ask you to not rely your self out! If there’s no age restriction listed, it’s undoubtedly value placing in an utility and together with one thing in your artist assertion depicting your specific inventive journey.
For instance, listed here are just some nice applications open to any age vary, as a pattern of prospects:
And, after all, at all times try the ACF Alternatives web page, too — if there are parameters to contemplate, they’re included within the description and are straightforward to identify: https://composersforum.org/alternatives/
Provided that there are fewer present fellowships and grants catered towards older rising composers, listed here are some concepts on the best way to construct your individual community and alternatives. First, do a little analysis on artist residencies — these are nice alternatives to have quiet area to focus in your artistic follow and in addition meet and collaborate with like-minded artists.
And second, domesticate your native community, beginning small with the folks you realize, then constructing outward from there:
- Go to live shows of musicians/ ensembles you admire whom you’d like to play your music, and begin creating relationships with them.
- Get to know your native music community by becoming a member of an ensemble or attending meet-up occasions in your group.
- Be a part of an artist collective (or begin your individual!) to share data and assist with different creatives.
- Publish a request for musicians on Craigslist, publish to a Fb group of musicians in your space, or discover group music colleges to search out individuals who is likely to be involved in performing your music.
- Try Meetup.com, and be a part of an present group about enjoying classical music or make one!
Expensive Rachel & Carol Ann,
I’m an indie report producer/label working with three teams of older, professionally established, but “indie” artists (learn: over 60) making recordings of (actually) improbable new music that doesn’t simply match into both “classical” or “jazz” genres. These artists are improbable performers, but unaware of the best way to self-promote, particularly within the modern panorama of social media.
Do you could have any recommendation for older artists a couple of) the best way to develop larger consolation and facility selling themselves through social media; b) the best way to discover skilled publicists who will help us promote niche-genre recordings to the audiences that search it; and c) if we’re self-promoting, how far prematurely of a launch date ought to we be looking for press? Many thanks for *any* recommendation you possibly can provide!
Let’s get social
Belief me — it’s not simply older people who wrestle with navigating digital areas. Selling an album at the moment means proactively discovering your listeners on a number of platforms — radio, YouTube, digital streaming platforms, social media, reside exhibits, you identify it. Sure, the variety of totally different platforms within the digital sphere may be overwhelming, however it’s additionally a possibility for artists who don’t match into neat, pre-defined style packing containers to search out area of interest audiences.
The nice information for these artists is that they’re already working with a label, who can guarantee recorded belongings are fed to all of the streaming platforms with the correct metadata.
In case you’re sending a press launch out your self, I’d say to plan round 6-8 weeks earlier than the album launch date — however this will additionally depend upon what time of the yr you’re releasing, if there are occasions tied to the discharge, for those who’re attempting to hit the vacation present lists, and so forth. Make an digital press equipment to share with press and music platform contacts that features the album data and paintings, audio information, and artist bios and headshots. This may be so simple as making a password-protected folder in Dropbox or Google Drive, and together with the hyperlink in your press launch.
Having a publicist in your workforce is usually a large assist in navigating a launch plan, getting higher placement on music platforms, and securing interviews and evaluations. Many publicists at the moment additionally advise on (and even deal with) social media for shoppers, or can advocate somebody who will help your artists with creating posts.
Methods to discover the precise publicist? Nicely, it’s usually a little bit of a technique of researching, gathering information from friends, and reaching out to many potential collaborators earlier than you discover the precise match. I typically advise artists to have a look at different artists making (comparatively) comparable music to see who they’re working with. Or simply actually google “classical music publicist,” and begin reaching out to people to introduce your self, arrange a gathering, and see if it’s a great match — oftentimes, publicists can advocate names of different colleagues even when they’re unable to take you on for any purpose.
On the subject of social media: one beauty of the world of social media is that there’s sufficient room for all sorts of parents, ages, and backgrounds. A number of ideas for determining how and what and the place to start posting:
- Once more, do a little analysis. Try what different labels and artists who you admire are doing on Fb, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and so forth. What sorts of posts, paintings, and movies are they creating, and the place are they posting them? It’s useful to get content material concepts from others first, after which emulate till you discover your individual approach. (By the way in which, there are some nice free instruments obtainable on-line for designing professional-looking posts, like Canva and Adobe Categorical.)
- Begin with one channel. If social media feels too huge and complex, slim your scope to at least one channel that feels manageable or matches your private fashion extra. Most of the artists I work with primarily concentrate on one channel (say, Twitter or Instagram) that almost all fits their method of expression. Get comfy in a single area, after which down the highway you possibly can adapt your posts throughout different platforms.
- Ask your self, “What makes your group you?”— after which present us. Use this query as a tenet for what sort of content material you possibly can share to assist audiences perceive who you’re, what sort of music you play, and what makes it so particular. Right this moment, visible content material (i.e. movies and images of you performing or speaking about music) is vital to partaking potential followers on social media — simply hold it quick and candy. You possibly can seize quite a bit with a mobile phone, a tripod, and good lighting nowadays (or discover a youthful one who is prepared to assist). However one factor that I’ve discovered by no means fails as content material: performers simply having a very joyful time enjoying music collectively.
Better of luck,
Wish to submit a query for the subsequent installment of Asking for a Good friend? Sfinish in your query by Could 1.
Have questions that you simply’d favor to talk instantly with somebody about? Submit your inquiries to American Composers Discussion board’s Assist Desk to get in contact with an ACF employees member and connect with sources and assist.
I CARE IF YOU LISTEN is an editorially-independent program of the American Composers Discussion board, funded with beneficiant donor and institutional assist. Opinions expressed are solely these of the creator and should not signify the views of ICIYL or ACF.
A present to ACF helps assist the work of ICIYL. For extra on ACF, go to the “At ACF” part or composersforum.org.
Rachel Sokolow is an Artist Supervisor at MKI Artists and maintains a contract consulting follow. She is enthusiastic about collaborating with and creating particular tasks for composers and performing artists.
|CAROL ANN CHEUNG
Carol Ann Cheung is the Director of Publicity & Advertising and marketing at Boosey & Hawkes, the place she promotes composers by means of strategic communications.