If you are a songwriter, you have probably asked yourself that question. Do you need a fully produced demo? Well….the answer is probably. Today’s music world is not based on what “could” be it is based more on what IS. What does this mean? It means labels, and publishers don’t have the money or patience to take an “almost there” project and develop it. They expect the artists and songwriters to be savvy enough to do that and take the bigger hunk of risk. Does this mean a hit song won’t shine through a simple piano-voice or guitar-vocal demo? No. But most people listening want to be fed a demo that sounds like the finished product. It helps them see the picture a little clearer. That little boost may make them see the dollar $igns a little more. They don’t have to use as much imagination.
So in today’s music landscape if you write songs or lyrics, you should invest in your songs and get fully produced demos made. Not only will it make you look more serious, it also gives you something you can have forever as a professional archive of your best work. You can also use the demos to license to TV/Film and other media to actually start making some money with your songs….without a publisher.
What does a fully produced demo sound like? You can listen to some song demos here. These are pop, dance, R&B and modern country song demos that I have produced for songwriting clients here at my studio, C-Sharp Productions. I can take finished songs that have words and melody and make them shine, or I can also take just lyrics and set them to music and also make them come alive. Services like I offer help songwriters see their songs become polished. I know I am plugging my business here, but you really should have at least some produced demos in your arsenal. You don’t have to use me, but take a listen, and if my production style strikes a chord with you, then you should hire me. Listen around and find a producer, like me, that fits with what you are looking for. If you want a folk/acoustic song demo….I’m not your dude. If you want a hot pop, R&B, dance or modern country track, then I can do my thang. One of my clients recently won first place in the Dance genre of the Billboard song contest with a song I produced.
There used to be a time when all I thought about was being a big pop star. It was only a matter of time before the world saw my talent and I would be rich a famous. I just thought that all I needed to do was record a demo in my bedroom and send it to labels and someone would scoop me up and make me famous. I’d never have to work and I would get to travel the world.
Well….the older I get, and the more I know about the big time music biz, the less that matters to me. I am now getting to a place where I make music and write songs because that is what I love. I love the process. I love the feeling I get when I write a decent song or cut a pretty good demo. I also like the fact that I have developed my own music business by helping other songwriters and singers. They hire me for my talents. I can do something they can’t, so they give me money to help them. It means a lot that they see enough value in what I do to hire me. That feels pretty close to what I imagined being rich and famous feels like. I get to make new friends, make new music and make some money. That is all pretty sweet. So as the new year starts, i want to focus on making music. I want to write songs that I like and not worry about whether they will be liked by the masses. I want to sing my songs. I want to have other people sing my songs. I want to finish the projects i have in the works with my great clients. Most of all, I want to enjoy the process and the experience. That is where success comes from.
Many songwriters that I work with send me lyrics that are really poems. Good poems, but more poetry than songs. Many times I take the overall theme and ideas of the poem and break it down into song structure. Songs have very distinct sections and structure. Poems are a little more free, and many times have too many words. A good producer will take your words and make them really connect with your audience.
I can help you turn your poems into songs. I have been recording song demos for almost 15 years. I will take your lyrics and turn it into a great song structure and create high quality music tracks. I will also find a singer than can bring your words to life.
C-Sharp Productions offers song demo services.
If you are looking for inspiration or looking to expand your songwriting, you could drive by a movie theatre and write down all the movie titles. Then you could take the list home and write some songs with those as the titles. You should try to make the topic and content of the song as original as you can….so it may be good to use movies that you have no clue what they are about.
One of the keys to writing great songs is to make sure they have a strong hook. Usually the hook is the title of the song. That makes them more easily remembered.
One of the editors interviewed me for a story they did on women who have followed a dream. They wanted to see how much it costs to go after all kinds of dreams. The dream I was asked about was recording a CD. C-Sharp Productions has been around since 1996 so I have helped all kinds of bands and artists record CD’s. I have worked with people on 1 song demos, all the way up to full CD’s.
So next time you are at a book store, look for More Magazine with Helen Mirren on the cover. It is the April issue. My little 15 minutes of national fame is on page 119. There is also a great photo and write up of jazz singer Sharon Rae North.
Please let me know if there are any music business topics you may want discussed on this blog. —- CHAD