According to the big record labels this internet thing is close to the worst thing that has ever happened. They do what they can to work against the possibilities and enormous potential this fantastic distribution and communication platform has to offer.
Let’s do a wild hypothesis and assume that people will actually come to your concerts, buy your t-shirts, use your music commercially and actually pay for your tracks as long as you make the music available and tap into the power of the internet. What are your options?
Make a profile on MySpace. Publish your videos on YouTube. Make a channel in Democracy Player. Be present on Last.fm and in Pandora. A lot of people use these sites to discover new music.
If you make quality music you could end up on BoingBoing like Sophe Lux. If you do cool stuff like Bare Naked Ladies you could end up on digg several times, on BoingBoing, Slashdot and in general – all over the place.
Make yourself available
Millions of idiots buy music on iTunes music store and MSN music. Files that will only play on certain players and with heavy restrictions on use. Still, it’s a good idea to be there because of those millions of idiots… Even better, be available on eMusic and any other stores that sell DRM free music. If your music gets popular it will be available out there without DRM anyway.
Give your fans control
Let fans take pictures on your concerts. Let them record on their phones and cameras. Let them share their works. Make tags on Flickr and YouTube and Del.icio.us so people can find you. Let them remix and have fun with your music. Let them help you with your next album. Use creative commons to avoid commercial exploitation.
Do like BNL
Yes, simply do like the already mentioned Bare Naked Ladies. BoingBoing have a good roundup of all the cool stuff BNL do here. You also find them on Flickr and YouTube through the tag “bnl”.