Since I started writing for Music Gateway & Cheeky Promo, I’ve found that more indie singers and bands have been sending me requests to review their music. There is something to be said about a certain level of etiquette that one should follow due in part to proper courtesy. This article will outline the do’s and don’ts of what to do to have your music reviewed by either a; radio station, group or individual.
The first thing I would recommend for any indie artist to do when seeking a blogger to review their pieces is to proceed with some online research. Find which writers review music from your genre for example; if you are a classical piano composer do not send your music to a Hard Rock or Alternative blogger for review as it may not be their cup of tea to start with. There are various genres of music just as there are writers who have their preferences of what they decide to review or for whom. Of course, you might also find those reviewers who relish all genres of music that is an entirely different bar line all together.
Keep all of your options open; remember, this is your work, something you’ve hopefully put a lot of effort into so you want to find someone who can review your work who not only has proper knowledge but also the ability to turn their review of your music into something that is so spell binding that everyone who reads your review will want to go and buy your masterpieces instantly.
The old adage of “you get what you paid for” comes into play at this point. There are so many artists desperate to have their music reviewed; it should not always come down to money I believe as a trade in goods is also acceptable to a point. If you do not have a disposable income to spend on PR and reviews at first perhaps I would recommend a mutually agreed upon trade of goods and services of equal value. Many indie artists do not have a significant amount of funds to pay someone to review their music in this case what I would recommend is a barter system.
For example lets say there is a blogger who is charging $30.00 for music reviews but you do not have any money because you spent it on recording your EP and on merchandise for you to sell through either your: site, Facebook page or even twitter. Typically most band sweat shirts would go for at least $30 and t-shirts $15 offer the reviewer on in exchange for their piece.
Your music is just as important as the bloggers writing; it is a symbiotic relationship, not only that to expect something for nothing I find to be bad business practise but that is just me. My personal opinion: one should be paid for their ideas and thoughts even though at times it seems quite difficult to quantify.
I know it seems like common sense but DO NOT ever send someone an email without finding out who you are personally directing your inquiry to. A “To whom it may concern” in this instance is not professional. Which goes back to my original point, do your research before sending your requests! One must approach others on a human level first, no one person is better than the other, we are all equal.
Furthermore, make sure that you include all of your personal details, do not simply send a video or MP3 without an introduction, typically consisting of: who you are, what the musical genre is, where you are from, when you started playing/composing and of course why you feel you are a singer/songwriter. These might seem like trivial things to include but believe me I have been on the review receiving request end many times, this information makes a big difference between someone considering your work and simply pressing the delete button. I know, that seems like a harsh statement but it is the reality. Humanity first, then show off your skills, tenacity and why you have a right to be sending that song or EP in for review. Please also remember never forget to say thank you either privately or publically to those who have helped you along with the success of your musical journey.
The Music Industry can be quite fickle with regards to reviews, what you want to do is grow your own niche, music to spackle the gaps of all the other groups out there. A unique emotive inducing sound that ANYONE would relish the thought of writing about. It can be tricky to carve out a name for yourself with in the Music Business but, once you have your sound you must find the perfect quill to write about all the glory that transcended who you are and what the depth of your melodies mean. As my dear friend always says “Be cheeky, but not too cheeky!”
What are you waiting for, go and research…
Written by Rania M M Watts
Follow Rania @RMMWCopyrighting
Approaching music bloggers without any prior introductions can be daunting. Why not hire a blogger/music journalist through Music Gateway?