Mission Makers Podcast | London | UK
ON DREAM LABELS
The power of the dancefloor has been my mission since I was 7 years old. This year, after thousands of hours of mastering my craft, I debuted my first wave of musical releases on leading labels, Mobilee and Sol Selectas, with the latter achieving a #1 in Beatport's Afro-house charts, and 10 more records lined up for the rest of the year 😅
Releasing music on dream labels is both an art and a science. It requires discipline, hard work, and crucially, a community of superfans. In this article, I'll dive into the importance of cultivating a unique sonic identity, building community, and building your brand to help you get your music recognized by the labels you love.
1. DEVELOP YOUR SIGNATURE SOUND
When you embark down the rabbit hole of production, there are endless variables.
Developing a unique signature sound is a fundamental step for any producer who wants to achieve long-term success in the music industry. It's essential to master the foundation of your sonic palette and create a consistent red line across your productions before rushing to get your music out. For me, this took several years to master and I'm really glad I didn't rush it, otherwise, I wouldn't be able to consistently paint my palette with that red line time and time again. Labels are looking for authenticity with an intriguing differentiation, not just a cut-and-paste of what's already on the market.
It's essential that your sound encapsulates your vision and values as an artist, and it's a pivotal factor in growing your audience.
2. BUILDING A COMMUNITY OF SUPERFANS
Instead of spending money on ads, spend more time on people!
Building a vibrant community is vital for success in the music industry. This involves creating deep connections with fellow artists, label owners, mentors, and most importantly, fans. These are the ones who will speak the most highly of you in the rooms that you are not in, they'll open doors for you, and they'll be the first to share your music with their communities. Relationships go far beyond the impersonal realm of emails and social media.
Support your fellow artist's events, attend label parties, and make sure you are at industry conferences. For me, a huge catalyst was seeking out mentors. They say you're the average of the 5 people you surround yourself with, so find 5 killer mentors! My mentors taught me advanced production techniques, they were my biggest sounding board in navigating the rollercoaster of the music industry, and crucially, they pitched my music to the labels I wanted to release on. The significance of this cannot be overstated and was so much more valuable than sending out cold emails to labels.
3. BUILDING YOUR BRAND
Over 100,000 new records are released each week on Spotify. Having a strong personal brand is paramount for you to stand out in such a crowded landscape.
Fans want to connect on a deep level with you as a human being. They want to know what you stand for and your brand has to convey this. It's important to know your target market and understand what matters to them. It's equally important to be clear on your brand values, your visual identity, and the story you wholeheartedly convey to your target audience, both through your music and your words.
In today's digital world, your social media is your business card and it's what continuously engages the attention of both fans and industry professionals alike. This is the area that sometimes artists neglect the most, and I totally get it. It can be so overwhelming to keep up with different platforms that are continuously changing their algorithm to succeed. In fact, I had to delete all my social media presence for a few years to really hone my mission. But at some point, you will really have to hone in on your digital presence. Labels, promoters, and brands expect this of you, and there are thousands of artists out there who have mastered this and are competing for the same opportunity.
Ultimately, I really believe that creating demand comes from three things: being an amazing performer, being a quality-focused music producer, and knowing how to market your brand, so go out there and get it!
And here's a sneak peek into my music production in the studio :-)
Farah's episode can be found in the video below and on Apple and Spotify.
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Lessons To Fuel Your Mission
The music industry is a marathon not a sprint
Relationship building is everything
Seek out mentors and build your community of superfans
Your social media is your business card