While this list isn’t meant as a “How 2 Get U Signed!!!” career guide, if your band is guilty of any of the below offenses you’re not off to a good start. Nothing’s more embarrassing than seeing a band who thinks they’re the hot shit doing everything right but they’re really doing it so, so wrong. Don’t be offended; we’re trying to help!
1. Your Facebook page requires someone to “Like” the band to listen to your music. Why would I publicly profess my love for a band if I’ve never heard a note of their music?
2. You haven’t signed up for all of the following: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Bandcamp, Soundcloud and Reverb Nation. And you’re not updating all of the above consistently. Be everywhere that a potential fan could stumble upon your music!
3. You take longer than 10 minutes to set up your gear on stage.
4. You take longer than 5 minutes to get your gear off the stage. (Drummers: get your stands off stage then disassemble)
5. You show up to gigs late and complain about the stage, the sound, the order of bands, anything. Show up on time, play your show, keep your head down and shut up. Above all, be professional. And be on time. Shit, be early: always.
6. You don’t proofread your emails before contacting potential press, labels, management, agents, etc.
7. You use what is obviously a form email for the above. Take the time and make the effort to personalize each one.
8. You don’t include a link to listen to your band’s music in the above emails.
9. You spam potential press, labels, management, agents, etc with multiple emails, Facebook messages, etc. One is plenty, with one follow-up.
10. You don’t respond to all communication in a timely manner.
11. You do not understand the function of the Reply-All button.
12. You haven’t made an effort to know and be on good terms with all of the music industry types in your town. If you live in the middle of nowhere and “industry types” consists of the one guy who books bands at his bar, better get to know him well.
13. Your band bio is longer than one paragraph.
14. You use Papyrus font.
15. You think the world owes your band something. Just be grateful to be playing music at all, and be content with whatever “success” you achieve.