#TCVideoFriday: Black Friday Edition!

Skipping the retail rush this year? Good call! Now grab one of those leftover turkey sandwiches out of the fridge and kick back to some TuneCore Artist videos…

Tae Brooks, “Lois Lane”

Lindsey Stirling, “Dragon Age”

Sin Cos Tan, “Lifestyle”

Derek Minor, “You Know Who”

Tanner Clark, “Do Not Be Afraid”

Nate Green, “Wild and Free”

Dawn Richard, “Blow”

Greek Fire, “Top Of The World”

NeoClubber, “Нельзя (feat. Маринка)”

The Katinas, “10,000 Reasons”

11 Reasons Why We’re Thankful to Be Artists

Often overlooked by turkey, stuffing and football, taking a moment to reflect on why we’re thankful is the truest way of celebrating this holiday called Thanksgiving. Here at TuneCore, we’re thankful everyday to be able to work with talented artists who are pursuing their passions.

We asked some musicians from the TuneCore Community what makes them thankful to be artists…

“As an artist, my gratitude begins with music itself.  I’m thankful for being able to live and breathe it every day.  It’s the one thing in my life I can always depend on.  Through ups and downs, smiles and frowns, music is there for me at any moment – with family and friends, as a career and a hobby all at once.  Music is the most precious gift to create, to give, and to receive.” – Laura Dickinson

“Growing up music had a large impact on our lives, so to be able to make music for the misfits like us is an honor. We are thankful, TuneCore gave us the chance to be heard!” – Social Club (Marty & FERN)

“I’m thankful to be an artist because every once in a while, if you’re lucky, you’ll get a message from someone saying that something you wrote made them feel less alone in whatever they’re going through. Music has done that for me and the chance to even try doing that for someone else is the best gift in the world.” – Lindsay Bruce

“I’m thankful to be an artist because otherwise it’s called “untreated mental illness” and that doesn’t sound nearly as fun.”
– Billy Yost, The Kickback

“I am thankful to be a musician because music sets people free and heals them.  Music understands you, it gets you.  It makes people laugh and dance and be happy. Music is powerful and it can unite the world.”
– Sheera

“I am thankful to be an artist because I get to express the way I feel outwardly. I love that through my art I am able to provide moments of empathy in the world.  The very best part of being an artist is feeling pride in something I have created and leaving my thumbprint on history.”
Sonia Leigh

“We are thankful to be artists because we are able to use our strengths and passions to create something meaningful. We are thankful for the support we have received this year and for the opportunity to share more music with you all in the near future!”  – Paperwhite

“I am thankful to be a musician because through my music, I am able to inspire fans and develop a deeper connection with them. It’s always comforting to know that although we are all different, we share similar experiences and just knowing I can inspire them in a positive way makes me beyond thankful.” – Devyn Rose

“As Picasso shared, ‘the purpose of art is to wash the dust of daily life off our souls.’  Performing or listening, music is a place to escape to. A place to replenish and re-center our lives. I’m thankful to be a part of it.”
– Gene Johnson, Diamond Rio

“I’m thankful to be a musician because I would be doing this with the same passion if I could only do this as a hobby. I feel like I have won the lottery every time I pick up a guitar and realize, I DO THIS for a living…what a life!!!” – Jimmy Olander, Diamond Rio

“I’m thankful to be a musician because I can get away with wearing such incredibly bad clothes and paying for a haircut never.”
– Mat Devine, Wrongchilde

New Music Tuesday: Nov. 25, 2014

TuneCore Artists are releasing tons of new music every day. Each week we check out the new TuneCore releases and choose a few at random to feature on the blog.

Is your hit next?

My Snow Angel
Shannon Labrie

Holiday, Singer/Songwriter

Cover Sessions, Vol. 1
Boyce Avenue

Singer/Songwriter, Pop

Tiffany Alvord

Singer/Songwriter, Pop

All My Christmases
Jillian Edwards

Holiday, Singer/Songwriter

roy b
Out of the Box
Roy Bittan

Instrumental, Rock

Krash Rover (Deluxe Version)
Krash Rover

Rock, Alternative

Cosmic Valley
Electronic, Hip Hop/Rap

Drive of My Life
Lindsay Bruce

Country, Pop

The Indigo Child
Daniel Knott

Dance, Electronic

Trip the Sun

Rock, Pop

9 Reasons Why a Traditional Music Education Trumps an Online Music Curriculum – Every Time!

[Editors Note: This is guest blog written by Dr. Ken Steorts – the founder and president of Visible Music College in Memphis, Tennessee and founding guitarist of the Grammy-nominated band Skillet.]

Yeah, I may be a dinosaur, but I’m not ashamed. To me, when it comes to music, an education is better in person than online, any day. Hear me out.

Granted, a lot of knowledge can be gained from online resources and being online often offers access to the most contemporary tools available. But the creation of music in the world, in the room, in real time, should be a shared “in person” experience.

Don’t get me wrong, I‘ve transferred files and recorded across multiple countries, watched live-streamed choir performances, signed up for lessons, watched videos and listened to podcasts, all online. I chat with musicians globally and am able to open links, listen to ideas and recruit students from as far away as Nepal. Ultimately, though, it’s all in the hopes of working on music together in a room. That’s the goal.

The way I learned guitar – the way kids get wide-eyed and crazy about tube amps, horn sections, and drum solos – is not through a mobile device with a compressed video file. It’s from being in a room with someone who is sweating it out with all their passion, transferring their music energy to other humans. I went crazy the night I saw the band on Beale Street, shirtless with their guitars slung low, rockin’ the crap out of a Strat and beating the drums within an inch of their lives. I played guitar on a burning hot Minnesota summer afternoon under a makeshift stage cover to thousands of screaming people and felt the music take over and create a frenzy – I thought my guitar would play itself if I threw it down. There’s something about “Being There” or “Being in the Moment” that a vacant digital experience can’t replace

Getting ideas and knowledge? Yes. But getting a degree in music without being present in the room? Can’t be right. It lacks emotion and proximity. 1984 the book, yes. 1984 the album, no.

And here’s nine reasons to opt out of online courses for your music degree and opt into a human connection that’s an integral part of a residency-style music education:

See it live.

Attending an actual live performance is irreplaceable. Come see people play and move and deliver the gift of live, original music. The real emotion in the room or at the venue loses something over the internet.

Feed off the energy.

Musicians respond to people in the room, and you need to learn this for yourself as you grow your skills. Not everyone is excited about your modes or tonguing technique. They want to yell and join in with you.

Learn from the greats.

You can learn more in a few minutes in the presence of great musicians than hours from a feed of them in front of a camera.

Josh Kottke, a member of Visible Worship (Visible Music College’s touring worship band who charted on iTunes with their self-titled EP) says: “One of the biggest ways we can grow as artists and musicians is to be surrounded with others that are better than us. We are able to pick up ideas and learn off one another by listening and collaborating together.”

Build connections builds a career.

Regionally is how you are going to succeed in music anyway. Build your career through relationships and live music by performing around your town, county or region. Recording-only artists are rare. Artist who record and perform set the standard.

You’ve got to hear it.

Sound quality is better in a room and you need to learn what music sounds like, not through a digital transfer.


Musicians are “first responders” in community settings and need to appreciate that aspect of their lives. As creative people, we thrive in a community where we can be sensitive to the needs of others. We need to practice this giving of ourselves from time to time and not just feed our computer-tranced selves.

Do it right the first time.

The exact angle of your wrist or back is important when training. Someone, in person, needs to make you do it right by touching your hand and watching you breathe. Josh Kottke agrees: “Being in a hands on environment, surrounded by instructors and fellow students drives artists and musicians in many ways that an online campus environment can’t. Having one-on-one, in-person lessons helps the instructor pick up and correct things that are harder to notice from a computer screen.”

Make music work.

Emulating someone in real life is powerful, especially when they are making a living doing what you want to do. Take a look around you at some people who make music right where you are, and are building a working career. See music as an art form and a viable, long-term career.

Support systems keep you positive.

It’s hard to be a working musician and not become cynical. It’s hard to work for steady income while creating from the core of your being. Working with fellow artists is essential. They’ll show you how your creativity and work come together. These support systems can set you up for success.

Last year only 17 percent of University of Phoenix students graduated within 150 percent of the expected time of graduation. Need I say more? Music education in person trumps an online music education. Every time.

#TCVideoFriday: November 21, 2014

T.G.I.TCVideoFriday! Warm up to this week’s selection of TuneCore Artist videos.

Antix, “Smile (ft. Nomakhosi Nkosi)”

David Justin, “Supernova”

Kissing Miss Lizzy, “3rd Degree Love Burn”

Devyn Rose, “Falling 4 U”

Lenny Cooper, “Duramax (ft. Young Gunner)”

Drew Baldridge, “She’s Taken”

Emeka Ibe, “OVADOZ”

Aquilo, “You There”

JMSN, “Ends (Money)”

I Fight Dragons, “Pretend”

ARRA, “I’m So Trill”

New Store Alert: YouTube Has Launched a New Music Store

It should be no surprise to you at this point that we get really excited about new stores here at TuneCore. That’s why we’re psyched to let TuneCore Artists know that you can get your music heard worldwide on YouTube Music Key!

YouTube Music Key is a new, cool premium streaming service that gets your music shared around the world.

Why YouTube Music Key is great for your music and you:

  • 1 billion unique users visit YouTube each month.
  • 6 billion hours of video are watched on YouTube each month.
  • You get 100% of the sales revenue TuneCore collects.

So, what are you waiting for? Get your music in front of more than a billion YouTube viewers today!

Add your releases to YouTube Music Key.