New Web Domain ‘.BAND’: More Than Just the New Kid on the Block

[Editor’s Note: This was written by Jesse McCracken, Social Media Manager for Rightside, and it originally appeared on Rightside’s blog. Visit tunecoredomains.band to get “.band” or “.rocks” web addresses that capture your band’s and you brand’s personality and voice.]

Van Morrison is a music legend. As a singer-songwriter since the late 1950s, he has seen the industry go through a lot of changes. He’s quoted as saying, “You can’t stay the same. If you’re a musician and a singer, you have to change, that’s the way it works.” Well, get ready for a big change to how musicians can present themselves on the Internet, one that every artist needs to know about: new top level domains—alternatives to .COM—that are geared toward the music industry.

In my day job I manage social media for Rightside, but I am also a lifelong musician. When I learned that Rightside was adding the .BAND domain to a portfolio that also includes .ROCKS, I started thinking about all the ways my fellow artists can put a music-specific domain name to work.

Make it super easy for your audience to find you

To make a living in the music industry, you need an online presence that’s easy to find, be it a website, SoundCloud profile, or Facebook page. Don’t bother saying a long, ungainly URL from the stage; no one is going to remember it—they may not even remember your group’s name the first time they hear it. As entertainment journalist Hugh McIntyre noted in his recent article in Forbes, music acts can use .BAND to “make it immediately clear who they are and what they do with a short, snappy domain name.”

Jeff Pollack, CEO of Global Media & Entertainment for Pollack Music & Media Group, knows the importance of recognizable branding for bands and musicians. Pollack has been at the forefront of music trends for nearly 25 years, and his clients have included MTV and VH1. “Artists require not only talent, but also a strong, creative identity that will allow them to stand out in a highly competitive musical landscape,” he said. “New domain name options, like .BAND, give musicians exciting new opportunities to extend a unique identity online.”

Synth-soul group Keeper grabbed the URL keeper.band and redirected it to their existing site, keepermusic.com, which isn’t as easy to say or remember. That short, memorable web address will come in handy.

Match the brand to the .BAND

Your band name probably doesn’t include the words “dot com” or “dot net,” but if you’re like Dave Matthews Band, KC and the Sunshine Band, or the Steve Miller Band, your name has the word “band” in it, and if so, there might be a perfect match in the form of a URL ending in .BAND. Having your band name exactly match the words people type into search engines can positively impact your search-engine ranking.

Improved discoverability, artistic expression and having the perfect online name are potentially big advantages for today’s artist.


Visit tunecoredomains.band to get “.band” or “.rocks” web addresses that capture your band’s and you brand’s personality and voice.

Interview: S3RL On Collecting Worldwide Royalties

S3RL (aka Jole Hughes) is a producer, DJ and musician based in Brisbane, Queensland who caters to a dedicated  base of house and rave music fans. Specializing in ‘UK hardcore’, a genre that evolved over the ’90s as house and techno music took on more complex layers, beats and breakdowns, S3RL has released and distributed dozens of singles via TuneCore since 2011. Around that time, he established EMFA Music, his own label, and beyond needing a distribution partner, S3RL was seeking publishing administration support as well.

Given his location, a widespread fan base, and the need to collect worldwide royalties from his songs, we’re psyched that S3RL calls TuneCore his publishing and distribution home! We got the chance to interview the busy producer and catch up on how publishing administration has been a vital part of his musical journey so far:

What made you curious about TuneCore’s Publishing Administration services initially?

S3RL: When I first established my label, I needed a distributor and after researching a few companies TuneCore came out on top by far. The publishing administration TuneCore offers is the best there is for what I’m looking for.

How were you collecting and managing your songwriter royalties before becoming a TuneCore Music Publishing Administration client?

I was doing it all manually myself. I had multiple labels to deal with and even more stores to keep track of.

Were there any surprising sources of revenue that you discovered upon entering into a publishing deal with TuneCore?

Well, most recently it would be YouTube.  I knew there would be a decent income from YouTube but no where near as much as it ended up being.

How important is the ability to collect royalties internationally to you?

Very important. My main fanbase is overseas so getting international coverage is vital.

What has been the most lucrative publishing revenue stream for you?

Overall it would be iTunes, then followed by Spotify.

How has the royalty collection contributed to the momentum or development of your musical career?

It has been a very important contribution. I’ve been able to focus more on aspects of music I would have normally had to put aside thanks to TuneCore taking care of the ‘paperwork’ side of things.

What kind of trends do you see when it comes to publishing among artists in the UK hardcore scene?

A lot of arists in my (relatively small) scene are trying to cover these aspects themselves. I have recomended TuneCore to a lot of them and they have all agreed it’s the way to go.

What’s an educational tidbit you’d share with independent artists who may be confused by music publishing?

I’m still confused about publishing myself so I’m probably the last person to ask when it comes to educating others about it. I’ve always seen it as the part of producing that ‘I don’t want to know about’ [laughs]. That’s another reason why I’m with TuneCore.

New Music Tuesday: April 21, 2015

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?

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To the Stars… Demos, Odds and Ends
Tom DeLonge
Rock, Singer/Songwriter

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Hold My Beer, Vol. 1
Randy Rogers & Wade Bowen
Country, Singer/Songwriter

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She Bad (feat. Sj3)
Cameron Dallas
Hip Hop/Rap, Pop

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Wear Em Out
Kendall K
Pop, Dance

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Literally, My Life
MyLIfeAsEva
Comedy, Pop

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Ivivi
Lilly Singh & Humble the Poet
Hip Hop/Rap, Pop

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The Mates of Soul
Taylor John Williams

Alternative, Singer/Songwriter

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Rip It, Ride It, Swerve. (feat. Hfm)
7deucedeuce
Hip Hop/Rap, R&B/Soul

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Intratable
Santi Mostaffa
Latin, Hip Hop/Rap

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Whispers II (Deluxe Version)
Passenger
Folk, Singer/Songwriter

 

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Vintage
High Dive Heart
Pop, Singer/Songwriter

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Somewhere That You Don’t Go
Adam Sanders
Country

 

How To Balance Your Day Job With Your Music Career

[Editor’s Note: This article is written by Farah Joan Fard and it originally appeared on the Sonicbids Blog. Great advice for so many independent artists juggling jobs with their passion while building their music careers!]

Does going to your 9-5 and then playing a gig that night ever make you feel like a Clark Kent/Superman combo? Do you feel like there’s not enough time in the day for both your full-time job and your musical duties? You’re not alone. Balancing a day job with a music career can be tricky on so many levels, especially when you’re so serious about your music – you want to be dedicating 100 percent of your time to it, but you need some way to pay the bills until you can get there.

We know what a massive struggle it can be, so we’re here to help you through it! You’ve likely encountered (or will soon encounter) the challenges below, so read on to learn how to handle each one without jeopardizing your day job or your music career.

1. DIY doesn’t mean you have to do it all yourself

If you’re in a band, it can be helpful to divvy up responsibilities between bandmates and work schedules so that you’re not digging into either role with the other. For instance, if one of your bandmates has a job that is more flexible with email, that person can reach out to venues or musicians during their break. If another bandmate gets out of work earlier, they can help with posters. If another has a car, maybe moving equipment is their job. You get the idea. (Note: A band agreement may help you out here.)

Or, if you’re solo (or you and your bandmates all have hectic schedules), a manager can definitely help you get there. They will only take a cut when you make money, so you’re in it together for the same end goal.

2. Don’t use your music income for non-music expenses

Oh, boy. Whatever happened to my band fund from high school? Last I saw it was under our bass player’s bed, circa 2005. This is a great example of how not to manage your funds.

However, it’s on the right track in some way: It’s a good idea to separate your band money from your other accounts. This way you can limit music expenses, plan for them, and budget well in advance. Sites like Mint or even a Google Spreadsheet can come in handy for this.

3. Somebody’s watching me?

You’ve definitely heard that employers will Google you, but your social media settings are pretty private, and you don’t Tweet about your 9-5 or anything. What could go wrong?

Part of being an artist is self-expression, social movement, and sometimes ruffling some feathers. However, what if your boss came across an image or video that puts you in a different light? What if you work for a daily paper and your songs show a political slant? What if you’re a teacher and there are themes in your music that the PTA might grumble at? (Case in point: A substitute teacher in Massachusetts was fired recently because of his music video.) You have to accept the fact that whatever you put out there is available to anyone who is looking.

Of course, you can also use this to your benefit. I know a music teacher who was hired without having to perform during her interview, because her employer had looked her up and seen that she could sing and play well through her live performance videos. You can let employers see the ambitious and creative side of you.

The takeaway here is that if there could be a conflict of interest between your day job and your music career, be cautious of what you share online. If you ask yourself, “Would I want my boss to see this?” and the answer is no, don’t take the risk – you still need a way to pay those bills before you can solely rely on your music income!

4. Prepare in advance for weekday gigs

Often, when a venue wants to get used to your sound and audience pull, they’ll want to try you out on a weekday first. This might mean a long night ahead of an early morning.

If a weekday gig is your only option, there are a number of things you can do to make it as painless as possible. For instance, maybe book with a band you know personally so you can coordinate time and equipment to make loading out faster. Drink plenty of water so you don’t feel sick in the morning. Plan your (and your instruments’) ride home in advance. Face the fact that you might be grabbing breakfast at a cafe instead of at home. Plan your next day’s work outfit in advance, and anything else you’ll need for the day. And if you need to leave work at 5 p.m. on the dot for your gig, have your meetings and deadlines sorted ahead of time so your coworkers don’t feel abandoned.

5. Don’t become a procrastination station at work to get ahead with your music

Hopefully you have a 9-5 (or 9-6, 10-6, whichever) that you enjoy. I’ve often found that my day job has me surrounded by coworkers who are also artists, actors, musicians, and writers, so everyone is aware of balancing our office creativity with our activities outside of work. Even if that’s the case, though, remember not to let one bleed too much into the other!

These days, when our smartphones have us pegged to email and social media, it can be easy to blur the lines between personal and professional. But think of it this way: You wouldn’t want to be emailing clients or vendors in the midst of your band’s set, right? So taking phone calls to set up gigs or reaching out to music blogs during office hours is probably not a good idea, unless it’s during your break.

On the other hand, using your phone to record ideas while you’re walking to work or at lunch, or jotting down a quick note for later can help you remember a great idea when it strikes! These apps may help you kick it up a notch in the notes and organization realm.

Even if your day job isn’t related to music or the arts, it’s still a symbiotic relationship. Your job can help fuel your music career with income, networking, and motivation. And perhaps your musical aspirations help you in the workplace (music helping you with the day to day – now there’s a whole other topic!). Keep it balanced, and it will keep rolling like a river.

#TCVideoFriday: April 17, 2015

What’s up world? We’re back with another round up of sweet TuneCore Artist videos to enjoy on this fine Friday. So throw your headphones on or turn your speakers up and enjoy!


Jon Wolfe, “What Are You Doin’ Right Now”


Skinny Living, “The Journey (Shed Sessions)”


Kate Linn, “Zaynah (feat. Chris Thrace)” 


Espinoza Paz, “Perdí la Pose”


Sahab, “Prom (Remix)”


Marsel – “Предубеждение и гордость”


Astroid Boys, “Posted”


Emily Hearn, “Volcano” 


Cheat Codes, “Visions”


Sandra McCracken, “Almighty God (Live from Brooklyn)”

The Latest From TuneCore Publishing

Hot off the heels of our exciting Believe Digital acquisition announcement, we’re pleased to update you with news from our sunny Burbank, CA Publishing Administration office! New artists, exciting pitches, and rad placements ahead…

SONGWRITER HIGHLIGHTS

Comprised of Adam Brooks, Andy Fischer-Price, and Allie Gonino, The Good Mad is an indie-folk trio that have found success through both acting and music. Gonino and The Good MadBrooks both starred in the ABC Family hit TV show, The Lying Game, while Fischer-Price has acted in various TV series and lent his voice to several animated movies including Monsters University. The Lying Game took notice of their musical talent, and together they recorded and performed several songs on the show.

Often compared to Mumford & Sons and The Lumineers, The Good Mad’s folk style combines harmonies, violin, and acoustic guitar while letting their country-music background shine through. These multi-talented musicians most recently released their newest EP, Face Your Feels, in January and continue to find time to play shows while having busy acting careers.

California natives, Private Island, have filled their newest EP, A Good Look, with their brand of unique and catchy beach-groove rock songs. Vocalists Christian Lum and Private IslandMichelle Guerrero’s dreamy vocals give this alt-rock band a retro vibe while Roger Mawer and Cameron Anderson’s rhythmic guitars give their music a funky, dance feel.

Private Island plays shows regularly around the Los Angeles area, and are currently in pre-production for their next single, set to be released this summer.

SYNC & CREATIVE

In addition to our Sync & Master Licensing Database, our creative team continuously works to place TuneCore administered copyrights across all visual media. Recent pitches include music for The Last Witch Hunter starring Vin Diesel, several TV shows including Under the Dome and Graceland, and a broadcast commercial for Subaru.

RECENT LICENSES & PLACEMENTS

Furious 7
Furious 7
“Hamdulillah”
Writer: Yassin Alsalman
Artist: The Narcy featuring Shadia Mansour

football
ESPN Monday Night Football
“Diamonds”
Writers: Joel Bruyere, Christopher Greenwood, Trevor McNevan
Artist: Manafest featuring Trevor McNevan

Ridiculousness
Ridiculousness
“Thunder in Your Heart”
Writer: Lenny Macaluso
Artist: Stan Bush

IN THE NEWS

TuneCore stays current on industry news to make sure we’re the first to know how new legislation and deals will affect our writers. Here are links to recent articles you need to know about:

BMI & Pandora
Pandora and BMI Wrap Up Arguments, Await a Big Decision
ASCAP
What the Copyright Office’s Study on Music Licensing Means to ASCAP Members