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Old 06-06-2019, 04:57 PM
Chipotle Chipotle is online now
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Default Demo web presence for gigs

So, I'm finally starting to play out a bit as a solo act after a long time away from gigging. I'd like some advice on setting up a site for demo tracks/videos for potential bookings.

Here are the options I see: Facebook page, own web site, 3rd-party site like Bandcamp, Soundcloud or Reverbnation. Am I missing any?

I am tech-savvy and have built many web sites, so a 3rd-party site (or FB) isn't a requirement for me. In fact, it may be preferable since I have complete control, and can set things up at no additional cost or bother.

Since I can roll my own, is there benefit to using a 3rd party to host sound files, profile etc.? And really nitty-gritty tech question: if I do host them on my own site, can I assume everyone has an HTML5 browser so I can just use <audio> tags?

Or is FB sufficient in itself, since everyone has the app already and can just plug your name; is a stand-alone site or 3rd-party site enough; or do you think you need both?

I know there's not one perfect option, but want some thoughts before I either put some work into a site myself, or sign up for a service. Thanks all!
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Old 06-06-2019, 05:59 PM
leew3 leew3 is offline
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I've used some very basic setups on Weebly with just sound files. One of the places we play posts FB live videos of us once a month, so I can refer potential new venues there if they want to see our smiling faces. Our website calendar has been neglected for a while but the url is oekb.weebly.com if you're curious. Hope this helps.
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Old 06-06-2019, 06:04 PM
Willie Voltaire Willie Voltaire is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipotle View Post
Here are the options I see: Facebook page, own web site, 3rd-party site like Bandcamp, Soundcloud or Reverbnation. Am I missing any?
I've used Sonicbids with good results.

Facebook seems like the no-brainer, but I know a lot of folks (besides just me) who have discontinued their membership over FB's appallingly poor stewardship of its members' data.
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Old 06-06-2019, 07:44 PM
duluthdan duluthdan is offline
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Just start a YouTube channel. Free and easy.
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Old 06-06-2019, 08:09 PM
Gordon Currie Gordon Currie is offline
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+1 on YouTube. A lot of bookers in my experience expect a YouTube channel. Plus it is easy to use it as well for fans. You can also embed your videos within your own web site quite easily.

Always use a third party site for video, unless you want to pay your web site host a LOT of money to cover the significant bandwidth requirements for streaming video.

It is good to have a Facebook presence, but I think it would be a mistake to rely solely on Facebook, unless you are certain that your fan base AND people booking you are all in on that avenue.
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Old 06-07-2019, 06:19 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
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The simple answer: every way you can!
First, DO set up a youtube channel to host your videos. Until you have enough content/subscriptions, you won't be able to 'name' it, you will only have a string of lets/numbers for a channel name (so people won't be able to search to find it easily).
If you can set up a 'this is me' dot com site, great, but that's secondary, too - a way to harvest email addresses for a mailing list, etc.
These days - even with those who don't 'trust' Facebook, it is the way to go due to the literally millions of people still using it. Set up an 'artist'/band page (separate from a personal page).
When seeking gigs, it will be an easy way to spread the word - 'just go to "facebook.com/mypage"'. Bar managers/bookers will look to see how many 'likes' you have (followers), you can post future gig info (facebook events), photos, videos (better to put them BOTH on youtube and in FB video). 'Fans' can post comments, photos of you they took at a gig, etc - the more interactivity you show, the more interested a bar owner will be. they not only want to hear/see what you sound like when playing, but how people react when they hear you and how many might show up to a gig.
Video yourself at gigs - have a friend do it, or set up camera/phone on a stand or tripod. Edit the video to get of the pre-song noise and you turning on the camera, but leave some of the applause at the end.
Facebook events allow you to invite people to your gigs, an important thing to do unless you are booking a lot of gigs already as background music.
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  #7  
Old 06-07-2019, 09:53 AM
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schneidan schneidan is offline
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As a long-time online journalist heavily involved in trying to spread our content to the people who need it, I think MikeBmusic is spot on. I'd start with a YouTube channel as the primary host, then share its content everywhere - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, reverbnation, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, and your own personal site. Be sure your site prominently answers (or links to answers) any question folks looking to hire you might have and keep it up-to-date!

Good luck!!
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Old 06-07-2019, 01:29 PM
Chipotle Chipotle is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schneidan View Post
I'd start with a YouTube channel as the primary host, then share its content everywhere - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, reverbnation, SoundCloud, Bandcamp, and your own personal site. Be sure your site prominently answers (or links to answers) any question folks looking to hire you might have and keep it up-to-date!
Not sure I want to maintain all of those! Interesting that YouTube comes up so much. I understand wanting to see an actual performance, but that also means I have to create videos. I have that capability and editing sw too, so if that's how things are these days... back in the day, video was a secondary thing rather than primary. Where would you recommend to put stuff that you have in audio only?

Do venue owners actually find artists by looking at Bandcamp etc.? Or for most are those just places to direct people you contact in other ways? IMO I want to pick one central place to host, if possible, and link people there from all the others. That would save a bunch of work.

Last edited by Kerbie; 06-09-2019 at 07:21 AM. Reason: Removed comment to mod
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Old 06-07-2019, 02:08 PM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Timely question. We've been actively playing out about a year and a half now. We started with a Facebook page. Then we added a Facebook Group page. What's the difference? A Facebook page is geared toward the business side of things. It's good for creating 'Events' that allow you to track how many are 'Interested' or 'Going' but the downside is that they constantly try to upsell you by charging you to boost your events. So that's when we added the Facebook Group page. Anyone you convince to Like either page will automatically get alerts whenever you post something. And you can put up photos and videos. I'm not a big fan of Facebook but it's free and easy and many people are on it.

We recorded videos and posted them on YouTube and also sound clips and posted them on SoundCloud. Both are free and fairly easy. It's easy to email or PM direct links to clips.

A few months back we decided to do our own web page. We bought our domain name and joined a service. We pay $5 a month for their very basic package. I created a pretty basic (I thought) web page that was okay for a first attempt but in the end it was pretty gaudy. We used photos we took ourselves that others took of us and then embedded YouTube videos and SoundCloud clips. It was nice but it wasn't very professional.

We decided to up our game a bit so we just had a professional photo shoot of us and I totally revamped the website, taking down the multiple pages and went with a very simple single page with the bare essentials on it. For sound demo I created a YouTube slideshow video with photos of us playing in different locations and took 30 second clips from 12 songs to run underneath the slideshow. This is the modern day equivalent of the 'demo tape' from the '70s.

Next up we're shooting a semi-pro video session tomorrow and having the guy create a similar demo video with 30-second video clips which we'll also embed in the website. For now we have a full song video in its place.

You can check out the new page in the link below in my sig line.
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Old 06-07-2019, 04:54 PM
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schneidan schneidan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipotle View Post
Not sure I want to maintain all of those! Interesting that YouTube comes up so much. I understand wanting to see an actual performance, but that also means I have to create videos. I have that capability and editing sw too, so if that's how things are these days... back in the day, video was a secondary thing rather than primary. Where would you recommend to put stuff that you have in audio only?

I don't think there's any reason not to use YouTube even for just audio -- you can set it with a static image of your logo or a photo, etc. more in one place is better, for sure. YouTube generates feeds you can probably use to reduce the workload on other platforms. You can use IFTTT to drive stuff to social platforms from it, too. And if you set up a site with Wordpress, it can ingest feeds and there are plugins that will regularly post links to your posts (videos or whatever) on the site to twitter, Facebook, and other platforms. It's very possible to build a web of services that requires relatively little work to spread to each other when you put something on any one of them.
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Old 06-08-2019, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schneidan View Post
You can use IFTTT to drive stuff to social platforms from it, too. And if you set up a site with Wordpress, it can ingest feeds and there are plugins that will regularly post links to your posts (videos or whatever) on the site to twitter, Facebook, and other platforms. It's very possible to build a web of services that requires relatively little work to spread to each other when you put something on any one of them.
Good point about plugins; I've done a few Wordpress sites. Sometimes I forget about plugins since I'm more of a roll-your-own guy (comes from being old enough that when I started, pretty much everything was roll-your-own!). I'll take a look at IFTTT services too. Thanks.

A question for all on YouTube and copyrights. Do you only post originals? If you post covers, how do you get past the YouTube filters that will flag everything for copyright violation?

Last edited by Chipotle; 06-08-2019 at 12:20 PM.
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Old 06-09-2019, 07:19 AM
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Quote:
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A question for all on YouTube and copyrights. Do you only post originals? If you post covers, how do you get past the YouTube filters that will flag everything for copyright violation?
Copyright seems dependent on the owner of the copyright. If they have a strict copyright policy against using it without permission your video will be taken down, especially if the actual version is used. I had a motorcycle charity ride that used several songs including a Metallica song that got yanked.

That said, every acoustic video cover we've posted has been left up. We clearly name the song title, original artist and the word 'cover' in the title and we've never had one yanked. Then again we've never covered Metallica! I always just assumed that any revenue your cover generates (little to none unless you're a Boyce Avenue type) would just go to the owner of the copyright.
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Old 06-10-2019, 08:16 AM
MikeBmusic MikeBmusic is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipotle View Post
A question for all on YouTube and copyrights. Do you only post originals? If you post covers, how do you get past the YouTube filters that will flag everything for copyright violation?
As Methos already said, it does depend on who owns the originals - and how close your version is to it so that the content search engines find it.
I've had Eagles songs, and a Led Zeppelin song removed by YT. Neil Young songs will probably get pulled, too.
If it gets 'flagged', it may not get pulled right away. If any video does, put it on facebook, the content searchers don't look there.
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Old 06-10-2019, 10:23 PM
The Kid! The Kid! is offline
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Use every free platform that you can. No reason not to.

Get a website. Make an EPK. Send it out to every booking contact that you can find. Pick great songs that people will know. Snippets of pre chorus to chorus to verse and out. Or just hooks. Depends on the song. Make sure the audio and video quality is decent.
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