In this week’s episode of Boomcast, we dive into the reasons why many music artists struggle to stand out in a crowded industry. In “This Is Why You’re Not Standing out as a Music Artist,” we uncover the common pitfalls and provide valuable insights to help you differentiate yourself and make a lasting impact as a musician.
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It’s no secret that the music industry is getting more and more crowded. Music software like Logic and Ableton have made it easy for anyone to produce music just from their laptops, or in some cases, phones. While this has opened up incredible opportunities for musicians, it’s also led to a market filled to the brim with artists trying to succeed. In this episode of Boomcast, Fabio and Lucas break down three strategies to help you stand out from the crowd, and discuss the ways that artists can use social media to connect with their audience.
The Importance of Aesthetics
Firstly, it’s important to stand out aesthetically as well as musically. Think of your favorite artists: most of them have a unique image that helps them get noticed in addition to their music. Now, that’s not to say that music should come last – nothing could be further from the truth. If you don’t focus on your music, no one will be able to relate to it. Lukas and Fabio give the examples of AC/DC and Billie Ellish – two artists from completely different eras – who’s aesthetic and fashion choice stood out as much as their music did. Both are great artists with awesome music, but their unconventional presentation choices undoubtedly helped push them into the mainstream.
Collaborating with Different Styles
Secondly, mixing up your style and including pieces and ideas from different genres helps your music stand out. Is your music very synth-heavy? Try adding some organic, more “natural” elements like a piano or an acoustic guitar. Of course, this goes the other way – if your song primarily consists of organic instruments, some synth or pad parts might brighten it up and add a new flair. Some of the best artists have taken inspiration from various genres and cultures – some of Madlib’s beats for Madvillainy, as an example, sample obscure Brazilian records that he found while visiting the country. It’s important as musicians, however, that we be respectful of the cultures we take inspiration from. Remember to keep an open mind – your music will thank you for it, too!
Thirdly, collaborate with as many people as possible, and do not be put off by unsuccessful collaborations. Working by yourself is great, but in order to be a better musician, you need to take risks and open yourself to new ideas and ways of working and thinking. Don’t be protective of your artistry! Making music is supposed to be fun. Meet new people and make all the connections you can. One time, Fabio was at a studio where he met a singer. They talked for a while, and Fabio invited him to sing on a track. The collaboration was so good that they only needed one take, and his vocal performance brought a whole new level to the record. If Fabio wasn’t open to collaboration, that simply wouldn’t have been possible. And just as importantly: do not let unsuccessful collaborations get you down! As Lukas says, you’re not going to be friends with everyone you meet. Put yourself out there, have fun, and not only will your music stand out, but you’ll enjoy making it more.
Social Media Marketing Doesn’t Hurt…
Finally, Fabio and Lucas discuss the various behind the scenes social media strategies artists of all genres can use in order to connect with their audience. Fabio notes that artists can choose one of two avenues when it comes to creating behind the scenes content: creation and re-creation. Focusing on creation is simple and informative – it could be as easy as talking about why you chose a particular chord or drum groove, or how you processed the vocals to make them fit in your mix. Recreation, on the other hand, is more difficult to do, and involves showing your music in a more human light. This allows a connection to form between the musician and the listener. Fabio cites Fred Again as someone who does this well. Take a look at this video, where Fred adds a human touch to a very digital piece of music by playing live piano over it. Another example is this video from Kenya Grace on TikTok, where the humanization comes from a live vocal and synth part played over top of the digital track. As Lukas points out, live music is more popular than ever – use this to your advantage when you create content for social media.