Could the traditional artist-client freelance model work for producers and labels?

Recharge

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Guys it's not dirty talking about money at all. The truth is a lot of as can do a lot better if we had more free time for focusing on producing and djing and learning even more. I can work office jobs with my eye closed, but I always hated 9-5 jobs, I find them life draining. Since we made a new team in the office we've been killing with our stats everybody else, but I still prefer to be somewhere else even if I am killing it with my eyes closed.

I a firm believer we choose our own limits. My out of shape bear belly sorry piece of shit body can get used to 100-150 push ups a day in two weeks (last month).

I would say the old rule - put 10000 hours into learning something and you will master it. My djing progress this year was immense. I listened some mixes from last year and the difference is night and day.

I see a lot of people on this forum who can do great as professional producers/djs and I do believe the only problem is time. But it would not be such a problem if you are making money out of it.

Also Bobby is right, these days the only way to make money is touring and gigs and you are expected to not make any money from that at least for 1 or 2 years when starting, also if you have family good luck touring the world.

Nothing shameful in making a group with 2/3 producers staying at the studio as a 9-5 jobs and one dj making the gigs, As a matter of fact I think this is the most viable solution unless you making popular music - EDM, Dance, House,
 
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Jul 20, 2020
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To what extent does this exist already?

I haven't ready any of the previous comments here, I might be repeating same concepts or introducing some new here.

By default, something like in music has always been happening for ages and not only in club-oriented music. The music engineer behind many big names has always been a thing and had a massive impact in the musical direction taken by the artist who first enquired for this (sort of) collabs.

"you find a producer who could do this, you hire them and then pay them a fix rate to make this project reality"
This is pretty much what many ghost producers are doing today too in Trance, progressive house, techno and not only. Only issue here is how far would you be able to go ahead with this "game" (you, as an 'artist) and completely loose the plot a.k.a. your own music philosophy and personality. I might be seen romantic here, I know, but nothing gives more excitement than seeing how much did you improve by doing music yourself and achieving those goals.
The benefits for the artist is that are paid upfront, free from relying on royalties, and likely receiving more. The benefit to the label is having more control on the product and full ownership. To what extent does this exist already?

Again, this sounds just like someone who asked somebody else to make a track for them. You can describe as much as you want what you feel like but eventually...you haven't made that track. It's not yours and will never be really yours. Sure thing you will get exposure by using your artist name-moniker, even if you credit who did the track (which some people don't even do) but in the end...what's the fun in there? Ow, ok getting top1 beatport charts, then you get called to perform as a DJ playing everywhere and let noobs thinking you're the real hero of the scene. Nah...
Label wise instead: I don't see any benefits, unless you just run a label to make big-money without any care or passion of saying something in the scene. Or, in other words, without having any interest in introducing something different in the industry that cleans up the mess and gives some fresh air. So "having more control on the product" is not technically true imo simply 'cause if you really follow your label from its birth, day by day, spending hours, days, weeks in looking for artists who are really matching with your music view, then you would achieve that goal without the need for ghosts producers sitting behind the curtains while someone else take the front stage and all the credits (for nothing). I mean, as a label owner, I see as I would poison the scene even more by doing that. Hence preferring to talk to artists, explain them what might need to be change in their demos to make them 100% fit for the label's policy and grow with them, seeing how the improve and, in the same way, how a real, human approach is made between to people who will eventually sign a music deal that will be, at that point, really beneficial for both parties.

Just my 2 cent, hopefully I did not misunderstand anything from the main thread.
 
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SaltAcidFatHeatAcid

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Jul 19, 2022
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In discussing with a limited set of producers, a track can be top 10 on Beatport trance charts with sales in the low hundreds. Heard multiple stories of people making max $1-2-3-400 off a top track of theirs. Streaming revenue can be decent, but your not likely to get good streaming numbers without a very big following, big artists playing your tracks, and/or having them on well-known compilations to get your name out there. It's amazing the amount of time, effort, and involvement needed to see any success in this area, and it's usually not financial either. I am all for models which improve this for both artists and labels. Or just self releasing or with small labels on Bandcamp or something. Not sure how different those setups are though? Maybe it's more of the same, just at a smaller scale.
 

Bobby Summa

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Guys it's not dirty talking about money at all. The truth is a lot of as can do a lot better if we had more free time for focusing on producing and djing and learning even more. I can work office jobs with my eye closed, but I always hated 9-5 jobs, I find them life draining. Since we made a new team in the office we've been killing with our stats everybody else, but I still prefer to be somewhere else even if I am killing it with my eyes closed.

I a firm believer we choose our own limits. My out of shape bear belly sorry piece of shit body can get used to 100-150 push ups a day in two weeks (last month).

I would say the old rule - put 10000 hours into learning something and you will master it. My djing progress this year was immense. I listened some mixes from last year and the difference is night and day.

I see a lot of people on this forum who can do great as professional producers/djs and I do believe the only problem is time. But it would not be such a problem if you are making money out of it.

Also Bobby is right, these days the only way to make money is touring and gigs and you are expected to not make any money from that at least for 1 or 2 years when starting, also if you have family good luck touring the world.

Nothing shameful in making a group with 2/3 producers staying at the studio as a 9-5 jobs and one dj making the gigs, As a matter of fact I think this is the most viable solution unless you making popular music - EDM, Dance, House,

Sounds really good mate. Nice plan.

Saying dirty money was definitely the wrong term for me to use. It was just as i have much respect for hensmon, it felt a bit odd regarding it being someone like himself providing cash to create a track to one of us, but you know something, if it works and i was involved, then together with the idea in your last paragraph,… Dream come true.

Ive just had a cracker of a session in the studio till half 1. I think ive finished LostLegend’s remix. ( or close too. ).
Im really pleased with whats there.

Take care peeps ✌️
 
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Hensmon

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Jun 27, 2020
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Thanks for your thoughts @Horizons Landscapes Music.

Your response matches where most musicians land i think. But from the other side of the creative fence (where I operate) I notice a completely different mindset and set of practices. For musicians it feels on two ends of the extreme; a tight grip and concern of their personal creative freedom, or the complete abandonment of it, working as a ghost producer to help perpetuate an illusion.

What I'm saying is that there is a large middle space within that spectrum at which many designers, painters, sculptors, illustrators, writers and photographers find themselves in, with great success, freedom and reward.

@Enlusion just described the process of releasing on JOOF, and the changes he had to make to fit the label, felt like an "invasion" of his creativity. I get it, but this mindset is not nearly as strong in the other creative fields. If I am asked to design a logo, or illustrate for a magazine cover, I come with expectations that the client has goals/outcomes in mind. There can actually be joy in taking my style and making it work within those challenges. There are also many times the forced direction is really not good (no joy). BUT the trade-offs give me a highly lucrative income, and with it the security, happiness and space to be highly creative on my own work (like Trancefix). My credibility grows and I then have more power to manage my client relationships better, and choose challenges that are more likely to bring me joy. Both the musician and client benefit greatly. Some of the best work I've done has been for clients.

Ultimately I ask this question because musicians are under payed and music is under valued. Something has to change. With more money flowing in, the scene would be healthy and bursting with creativity, like it was in the 90's and early 00's. The artist-client relationship is lucrative, historically proven and common, and those other industries have not suffered like the music industry has.
 
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Manofearth

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Sep 24, 2020
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What I'm saying is that there is a large middle space within that spectrum at which many designers, painters, sculptors, illustrators, writers and photographers find themselves in, with great success, freedom and reward.

Music is different to the professions you listed, it’s highly personal. You are a graphics designer that doesn’t have personal expression built into the craft as strongly as music or fine art. I think that’s why musicians and painters can reach such levels of celebration in society, because it’s a deep look into the authentic self and people deeply connect with that.

My point is that it’s more difficult for painters and artists to naturally fall into a freelance model used by designers. This said, many famous painters would commission their creativity, painting unique work for buyers, making portraits and so on. So the relationship between creation and client does exist already there.
 

Magdelayna

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Heres a question for you producers - ive been approached by a media company to advertise one of their products,because i have quite a successful Youtube channel with good view numbers. They want me to place a 1 minute advert before one of my tracks play in a video. Ive heard companies pay around a $2000 flat fee for this...but im concerned id lose viewer numbers and subscribers,with me starting to place sponsors like this.

What do you guys think?
 

Bobby Summa

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Heres a question for you producers - ive been approached by a media company to advertise one of their products,because i have quite a successful Youtube channel with good view numbers. They want me to place a 1 minute advert before one of my tracks play in a video. Ive heard companies pay around a $2000 flat fee for this...but im concerned id lose viewer numbers and subscribers,with me starting to place sponsors like this.

What do you guys think?

Hi magdelayna

Interesting problem to have.
I pay to subscribe to YouTube premium. I get a discount through vodafone and pay £7.99 or £7 each month for it. I believe its £11.99 without the discount.

I got it for two reasons. I can use it to listen to music but dont have to have the app open and can then suft internet etc on my phone at the same time.
As someone passionate about music
I found the adverts very annoying on the free version. So, its tricky. Maybe find out how many people have premium and how many of those people listen to music. Might be stats somewhere.

2 grand is a nice amount

( incidentally ive finished my LL remix finally, Your version blew me away. I couldn’t download Halons version unfortunately)

Cheers
 
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Magdelayna

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Hi magdelayna

Interesting problem to have.
I pay to subscribe to YouTube premium. I get a discount through vodafone and pay £7.99 or £7 each month for it. I believe its £11.99 without the discount.

I got it for two reasons. I can use it to listen to music but dont have to have the app open and can then suft internet etc on my phone at the same time.
As someone passionate about music
I found the adverts very annoying on the free version. So, its tricky. Maybe find out how many people have premium and how many of those people listen to music. Might be stats somewhere.

2 grand is a nice amount

this will be part of my actual video - not a Youtube advert. So it will play for a minute before my actual track starts. Of course you can skip it....but i think this a question money of vs ethics hehe.
 
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Enlusion

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Heres a question for you producers - ive been approached by a media company to advertise one of their products,because i have quite a successful Youtube channel with good view numbers. They want me to place a 1 minute advert before one of my tracks play in a video. Ive heard companies pay around a $2000 flat fee for this...but im concerned id lose viewer numbers and subscribers,with me starting to place sponsors like this.

What do you guys think?

I'd go for that if it's a solid advert and not something fishy. 90% of your listeners will skip the advert part, 10% would always complain about something. You're getting bigger as an artist, loyal subscribers will understand this.
 
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Julian Del Agranda

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I'd go for that if it's a solid advert and not something fishy. 90% of your listeners will skip the advert part, 10% would always complain about something. You're getting bigger as an artist, loyal subscribers will understand this.
Advertising 🤮🤮🤮🤮

But I would say yes to a few thousands as well. 🤪
 
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this will be part of my actual video - not a Youtube advert. So it will play for a minute before my actual track starts. Of course you can skip it....but i think this a question money of vs ethics hehe.
I mean you can make money of it ... so yeah go for it (I guess). All of us invest a lot of money into our music in form of equipment, software, plugins etc. so a little payback is definetly nice to have altough I can understand your thought about the ethic-thing when it comes to stuff like this. Its kinda "selling out" and this is something which might have a negative effect on the one or other.

I couldnt really decide either.
 

Bobby Summa

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this will be part of my actual video - not a Youtube advert. So it will play for a minute before my actual track starts. Of course you can skip it....but i think this a question money of vs ethics hehe.

Just a thought..
Audience is very important to an artist. What they think of your music and maybe for some, what they think of you.

2 grand is a good amount, but perhaps to keep your integrity ( im not saying it’s compromised but just incase you think it is) perhaps give a portion of this income to charity. Perhaps a charity that helps suffering children, or ill people through providing and encouraging them to express themselves through music such as one of the ones here. 23 Music Charities You Need To Know About This Festive Season

Theres also an organisation local to me who i thought of doing a charity evening for. They support children (I seem to remember they mention somewhere some of the kids with learning disabilities is a special interest to them) etc by providing rooms where they can learn things like music production. It aims for social change and tries to help youth develop their skills.
Its ran by rag and bone man and is called Audio Active. AudioActive.


This way a lot of people benefit plus your audience will think highly of you.
You can explain what you did on your track the advert is in in the section below YouTube videos.

Just a thought buddy

- Edit
@magdelana, depending on the product being advertised, that product could even help one of the charities and be a continual thing in ‘some of your videos if they have other products they could provide the charity, ( if they are up for that). Win, Win ,Win, type scenario. You could get income from each video, and give some to a charity each time. - Sorry I have a bachelor of arts in business management from 2001. I always think of things like this. 😃 - The amount of times ive had ideas that i thought would be good on the tv program Dragons Den! 😀
 
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Bobby Summa

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I'm also available if you want to get rid of some money

Lovely concept. 😆.
Yeh i thought of mentioning that to magdelayna but didn’t have the guts lol

- Guys, we should probably discuss this question about the advert on a separate thread. ( definitely not a thread on which of us get a share though🤔😂 im sure most of us will survive without it 😆 and magdelayna has earned this with his amazing ability, …one in ways similar to lots of us have on here btw , yourself included @Magnevi .
but a specific thread to discuss thoughts on the initial question raised. @Magdelayna

@Magnevi. Ive just only just this minute realised your on Legacy of Trance! Nice tracks dude!
 
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Magdelayna

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Ok,i think it mightve been a scam email now hehe. I still would be pretty uncomfortable putting a 1 minute sponsor before a track. I suppose it might be better if youre a Youtube channel discussing finance or reviewing tech.

I already have skippable Youtube ads before my tracks.
 
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Bobby Summa

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Ok,i think it mightve been a scam email now hehe. I still would be pretty uncomfortable putting a 1 minute sponsor before a track. I suppose it might be better if youre a Youtube channel discussing finance or reviewing tech.

I already have skippable Youtube ads before my tracks.

Definitely make sure man, look them up on trust pilot. Thats a shame if its a scam. If it isn’t a scam, check out my ideas above.

Soundcloud i think get those too from promotion or event companies. I had loads at one point. , Or maybe they are just opportunistic nothing companies pretending to be huge when they have very little presence at all.
 

Magdelayna

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Definitely make sure man, look them up on trust pilot. Thats a shame if its a scam. If it isn’t a scam, check out my ideas above.

Soundcloud i think get those too from promotion or event companies. I had loads at one point. , Or maybe they are just opportunistic nothing companies pretending to be huge when they have very little presence at all.

Someone has just described the scam process they go through - by sending an EXE file for you to open to look at the terms of the contract. Thats what i got,so obviously scam trying to get your details.

Its still a good source of revenue for a producer if you can get a ligitimate sponsor...although id probably favour a 10 second visual on the start of a video. I might advertise myself on Linkedin. Youve got to try and make as much revenue as you can these days hehe.
 
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