Wednesday, September 25, 2013

What Do You Want?

by Kim Copeland
kim-copeland_aug2013Do you want to DO something with your music … or do you want
TO HAVE DONE something with it?
One involves wishing; the other acting. Success is wonderful, but it only happens as a byproduct of action. Hit songwriter comes afterSongwriterFamous artist comes after Artist.
Those of you who follow me know that I am a strong advocate of action. Those of you who know me understand that everything we teach and preach at Kim Copeland Productions is based on movement towards a goal. Through our mentoring, critiques, seminars, artist development and artist/songwriter production, we are all about laying a foundation under your dreams and turning them into action! We know through our vast experience that success is not about having talent as much as it is about how you use your talent. We also know that productivity breed’s success.
I woke up this morning reveling in the success that so many of our clients are finding (or rather, creating) right now! From writing and pitching deals, first cuts, first radio interviews, to landing big gigs that increase fan base and paydays, etc., etc. I LOVE seeing you reap the rewards of your hard work and seeing the plans that we have helped you design come to fruition.
It takes a lot of courage and blind faith in yourself to keep moving forward even when the steps seem small and the mountain high. Those of you (you know who you are) who have shown this courage have earned the right to celebrate now as you begin a new chapter on your exciting journey. I am proud of each and every one of you and honored to share the journey with you.
Where are YOU on your journey? Still dreaming about it? If so, I challenge you today to write 5 goals for yourself for the coming week that will help you act on your dream.
Here are some suggestions.
>Write a verse, a chorus or a full song. (You know your level of writing.. Set attainable goals.) Write 15 minutes a day whether you feel like it or not. Sit and invite the creative muse in.
>You may be ready to start seeking out publishers. If so, find contact info on several and create a database. offers a “Publishers Edition” that you can buy online which lists many, many publishers in Nashville, as well as some in LA and NY. Reconnect with any contacts you have had and let slip. Ask friends who they have relationships with or whom they can introduce you to.
>Cold call 10 publishers and ask if they will listen to outside material. You only need one “yes”, so don’t be afraid of the 100 “no’s” that may precede it.
>You may have songs that you know are not commercial, but that you still believe in. Perhaps it is time to send the off for critiques to see how they can be tweaked to give them commercial appeal.
>Call a Performing Rights Organization (ASCAP, BMI, SESAC) to find out what they do and how to join. Or, if you are already a member of one, how they can help you with where you are now and where you want to be.
>If you are weak in one area of your writing and would like to write with other writers whose strengths compliment your weaknesses, seek out co-writers. There are songwriting groups all across the country and abroad that facilitate co-writing. You should also check out local writers nights and performance places where you can listen to songwriters perform and approach those that sound like a good fit for your needs.
>Find out how pitching works and lay out a plan for preparing your songs for that process. Writing is great. Getting your finished songs to artists who would potentially record, release and promote them….even better.
Spend some time learning about an area of the industry you are not well versed on. After all, it is the music BUSINNESS. Knowledge is power. Success in the music business, like success in any other business, consists of building and marketing a great product. Decide what areas you can do yourself and what you need help with, then find that help. Build a team around you that contains all of the players needed to succeed in this business.
Songwriters need publishers or song pluggers to represent their catalogs. If you do not want to handle your own marketing, find someone to partner with for that part of your business so you can focus on what you are best at.
By learning about the various pieces of the business puzzle, you can identify your needs and address them one at a time until your have a complete business plan of action.
As my songwriter friend, Marco says, “You eat an elephant one bite at a time”. It helps to remember that no one can do everything right now! Keep doing what you can do right now and the future will take care of itself.
To dream or to do? Both! Take time to visualize your goals. But save some of your available free time to act! DO what you have dreamed and your goals will become reality right before your eyes.

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