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The Doctor's Band

Advice on everything from getting your music heard to setting up a label and royalties.

Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Guest » Tue May 09, 2017 6:43 pm

shufflebeat wrote:
LdashD wrote:...you state you’d pay for experienced advice, I gave it for free,
No, that was subjective opinion, and worth every penny.

Professor Brian Cox: "It's Very Difficult To Argue With An Idiot"

LdashD: "Some opinions are just that, opinions, others also happen to be facts. Fact.'
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby shufflebeat » Wed May 10, 2017 12:11 am

LdashD wrote:
shufflebeat wrote:
LdashD wrote:...you state you’d pay for experienced advice, I gave it for free,
No, that was subjective opinion, and worth every penny.

Professor Brian Cox: "It's Very Difficult To Argue With An Idiot"

LdashD: "Some opinions are just that, opinions, others also happen to be facts. Fact.'

Consensus!

I do love a happy ending.
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby CS70 » Wed May 10, 2017 5:37 pm

shufflebeat wrote:Consensus!

I do love a happy ending.

I can see a devil poking out of the details ;) :bouncy:
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Aurongroove » Mon May 15, 2017 6:13 am

Adventure update;

Huzzah.

Our kickstarter was 315% successful; we hit our stretch goal and we have a couple of hundred quid left over for "making better version" of stuff, becasue every one of our costs was worse case scenario budgeting; cheapest sleeves, fewest t-shirts, most budget conscious CD cases, etc.

Our work for the next month will be getting pledger's addresses and T shirt sizes, finalizing album art and the actual physical versions of the cases and packaging.
And of course trying to find magazines, papers, sites that will review the stuff, venues that will host gigs, festivals, and extra musicians to play with us.

...and learn the rest of the songs so we can actually play them!!
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Martin Walker » Wed May 17, 2017 2:36 pm

Excellent news - well done! :clap:


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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby awjoe » Wed May 17, 2017 3:56 pm

Came back to have a trawl through this thread again. This jumped out.

Aurongroove wrote:And the momentum tax is quite harsh as well. Last September I was guessing a January release, now I'm guessing May. the milestones have all needed "effort overdraughts" drawn out against the next milestone. I'm worries that by the time a regular 'Joe-Soap' can buy the album in a shop or in iTunes, it'll be the 6th time we've popped the Aldi's Fizzy wine cork-or-plastic-lid and said "Right OK this time we've finally done it"

Still though, life's for learning. :beamup:

I recognize the problem, and here's what I learned recently about how to deal with this: EP. Last year, I shortened an album of a dozen songs to eight songs, with three great outcomes. First, it was finished sooner ('Milestone reached! Hurrah!). Next, I had more fun with it because it didn't drag on (If you lose the joy, the project's not worth it, right?). And finally, and from the point of view of the listener the best result, I'd scrapped the tunes that weren't as good as the keepers and the result was a much stronger album... uh...EP.

This year, following the same principle, I've finished another EP - six songs this time. By my own standards, it's pretty awesome - again, mostly because by editing the weakest tunes, what's left is my personal best. Plus, it's been gratifying getting it done quicker.

Last year I think it was, I asked people here this question: "How long is an album?" and there was no consensus, really. So, shorter releases does the trick, I think, and cuts down on what you called 'momentum tax'.

If I had a website and if I felt like working the internet for my stuff and if I was gigging and meeting people, I think I'd shorten projects even further, down to the point of releasing one tune at a time, in order to ratchet up the frequency, thereby staying in the public eye more constantly.

Just thoughts.
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby CS70 » Wed May 17, 2017 8:15 pm

awjoe wrote:I think I'd shorten projects even further, down to the point of releasing one tune at a time, in order to ratchet up the frequency, thereby staying in the public eye more constantly.

That's what my band does. Still slower than it should (between "other life", gigging, schedule studio sessions when everybody can, creative hesitations etc) but works wonders.

There is *one* thing which is great about being - ahem - less known: nobody gives a damn when you have released stuff. If you feel there's potential, you can usually run a marketing gig plus little tour on material you released whenever and it looks just as fresh on Spotify and iTunes as when it was made. How it sounds of course it's a different issue, but then of course we do only timeless music (tm) :D
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby awjoe » Thu May 18, 2017 4:44 am

My music's timeless, too. What a coincidence! We should share a beer sometime.
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby CS70 » Thu May 18, 2017 5:16 pm

awjoe wrote:My music's timeless, too. What a coincidence! We should share a beer sometime.

Doh! We must be cop.. pardon, take inspiration from the same sources! :bouncy:

Beer's a deal if I'm ever in the U.K. (Or you in Oslo..)
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Aurongroove » Thu May 18, 2017 7:19 pm

awjoe wrote:EP.


It's good advice, and he has already done the EP thing and it has paid dividends. (four releases in three years)
It's just not applicable to our situation this time for various reasons.
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Oli_F » Fri Jun 09, 2017 9:35 am

Interesting - this thread encapsulates all the challenges of anyone wanting to become a music professional. There are a couple of different angles I reckon:

- The Music: not that hard to classify, reminiscent of various things - Sparks springs to mind. It's clearly a decent bit of music in itself. But how does it relate to what's going on currently? Does it slot into a current scene with a readymade audience? I suspect not - and that could be a problem. (Yes, a low budget DIY track can be exciting and sweep through the music world, but I'm not sure this style is different enough from what's gone before to do that. I'm thinking of things like Scrrobius Pip and White Town for the sort of left-field DIY hit here)

- The Promotion: there are established methods of doing this, even as a DIY outfit. You just stump up a few hundred/thousand pounds and have them send your tune out to journos/DJs/VJs or whoever are the 'mavens' within the appropriate scene. Of course, if you're not easily identifiable into a scene then that might not work.

- Being seen to be serious. I think this quite important. The idea being that you are doing it 'for real' - getting out there, doing gigs, releasing records, making videos. That in itself can show the authentic artistic drive to be heard. And I think impresses a potential audience. It gives them something to buy into. I think this band are doing quite well on that front, with video and everything.

So, in summary - on the evidence of the one song, I'm not sure it's enough to prick up people's ears, but perhaps there are other songs that could do that. Without proper promotion it's going to be slow graft building up any kind of audience.

I guess the question is - what do you want from it? A fully paid for career in music, or a low paid sideline that satisfies your soul (or ego ;-)
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby Aurongroove » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:31 am

I only just remember this thread after a long year, and I came back to give some updates!

Oli F, thank you.
I didn't actually read your post until now, but when I did, I read it twice! the advice is sound and still very much applies!!
The main reason I thought to come back was to say thanks for lots of the responses I had here. Just knowing there are people who can relate to the... absolute madness of trying to get an indie band up and/or running.
This thread, though on the surface was indeed looking for help on practical matters (which did come, and was listened too) was for me, also an attempt to connect with people (perhaps older/wiser) who might help make this journey feel less alienating and scary.

So thanks guys, you helped in more ways than one.


Here's a selected list of things that happened since last May;

We got a slot in Electric Picnic, via a 'backdoor'-ish way of applying.
Basically, we wrote, filmed and produced an entire interactive move to be screened inside a lavishly decorated caravan as a festival installation and applied that way.
Viewed by small groups of people at a time, the people make decisions that affect the outcome and show alternative pathways through the film with two big buttons.
Some kids queued up again and again immediately to try for other endings!
(we were just counting our lucky stars we accidentally managed to make it PG)

It was played all weekend at the festival, and we did a gig as well.
The installation was entirely to thank for getting us our foot in the door to the "big" festival, and now there are several art festivals booking us especially for it.
We've almost become a two-party group; the band (5 musicians, in character) and the staff for the installation (A lady who's a theatre director, her husband a handyman, an artist who makes our signs, a filmmaker who recorded the film and a sound man who conveniently, because he's at the installation, can come do sound for whenever our gig is on at that same festival)
Making a posse of 10 people that meet up for the festivals.

In the summer we finally had the last piece of the pie for the album release except for our graphics editor (for the album art) was seriously dragging his heels.

It turns out that he was a con man who delegating our work to a low paid, non-qualified foreign worker, and that's why it kept coming back with mistakes. We found out before handing him any more money, but he ended up costing us another 8 months delay and the original investment of 600+ euros completely wasted. We had to perform our album's tour last autumn being able to only sell the merch and NOT copies of the album.

This was a guy RECOMMENDED TO US by the company printing our album, who were a newish printing house and who otherwise performed with brilliant professionalism and gave us an exceptional end product.

One of our friends who was extremely busy did us a massive favour by doing the graphics for us in only two weeks; vinyl labels, sleeves, CD art, Text formatting, print templates. He is officially a legend for the rest of his life.


on the day after Christmas day, our band leader (the DOCTOR, lol) was rushed into ICU with a ruptured appendix and therein almost died from toxic shock, drug-induced hallucinations and 10 days lack of sleep, E-coli Poisoning in his stomach, and blood poisoning.

He's just about survived and is recovering, and as of Valentine's day our album was released.
It's a Rock Opera inspired by the film 'The Room' by Tommy Wiseau and the Book 'The Disaster Artist' by Greg Sestero (recently James Franco made a film about it too!).

So we're currently clutching our legal advice document hoping no one sues, but partially hoping he at least kicks up a fuss about it because that'll be free promotion and we are protected under parody law.


We've had three reviews (all extremely positive, in one case, there were tears reading it).


We've done two videos since,
a live performance video of one of the songs.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gjRDe8db42E

and a very funny Christmas song, if I do say so myself, a cover of "Walking in the Air"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoNtiOJzLNA


The Album sales have been underwhelming, but considering no one knows us and we already had a pledge drive of 5k, our core audience and friends and family have already got their copies and merch!

This year we have a plethora of festivals to play at, and, I suppose, start writing more music.

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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby petev3.1 » Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:31 am

Unnecessary post.
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Re: The Doctor's Band

Postby blinddrew » Mon Mar 12, 2018 2:43 pm

Thanks for the update Aurongroove, love the caravan idea - good alternative thinking to work your way onto the scene. :)
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