Top Eight Tips for Indie Artists

 By :  Ty Cohen  

Over the next few minutes, I am going to go over some music promotional ideas, offer advice on selecting musician resources and show you how to promote your CD without emptying out your wallet. Independent artists have the upper hand and no longer have to worry about being signed to a major label to make it.

1. As I said before, you don't need a record deal to "make it" in the music industry. The industry has changed and that is no longer the absolute measure of your success. You can define your own success.

2. As an Indie artist, you won't have anyone telling you what to play, how to dress, how to promote your CD, which songs to sing or who to socialize with. It is all about you and your creativity!

3. Financial freedom is one of the most wonderful things about being an independent artist. You can come up with all types of music promotional ideas about how you market your music and what you do with your profits.

4. Spend the most amount of time on your first album. Take full advantage of every musician resource out there. First impressions are everything so you want this first one to be great.

5. Spend your money wisely. Don't go crazy with studio time and rack up tons of bills. Try to work out any problematic areas before you go on the studio clock.

6. Don't skimp on the manufacturing of your CD. You these people to be reputable and it is ok to splurge in this area. You want to make sure you release a good product no matter what.

7. Schedule your own tour. You want to build an incredible fan base because they are the best musician resource out there. Your fans love you but they will also be honest about your music and shows. If they don't like something or something is up to their standards, they will let you know.

8. Lastly, never underestimate the power of the Internet when searching for music promotional ideas on how to promote your CD. The Web is your friend and that is where the Independent artists make the most dough. Get a website and get a MySpace page.

These are just the top eight music promotional ideas and tips that I can offer you. Constantly try to redefine your music and come up with innovative marketable ideas. The opportunities are endless so take advantage of every single one of them.
 Author Resource:-  Online music industry's most recognizable voice-the former owner of an Indie label-current owner of Platinum Millennium Pub. & music industry seminar speaker/panelist. Author/creator of 40+ best-selling music biz materials & other "How to" resources, that helped 1000s of people. for more on Music Promotional Ideas, How to Promote Your CD, & Musician Resources

Independent Music Marketing Without Selling Out

 Is it true that in the world of independent music that marketing is considered a sell-out? Well, whether that is a stereotype or completely true, it does not matter because it is not a sell-out, at all! If you are an Indie musician who wants to taking an anti-corporate stance or huge labels in general leave a bad taste in your mouth you can still market in the music industry with out being left with the feeling of selling out. There are other music contacts to be made and other ways of getting your music heard with out going corporate.

The fact is, there are ways to build your fan base and amplify people's interest your independent music – without selling out. If you are an independent music maker, here are a few ways you can do some marketing without selling out to the music industry.

First, you need to put aside your anti-marketing frame of mind and think about what is best for your career in the music industry. Finding ways to reveal your ideas and creations through your sound to more people, which in turn is essentially marketing shows that you believe in what you are creating.

Doesn't the music you develop deserve to be heard around the world? Of course you think that way unless you only want to play for yourself. Marketing does not have to be a negative word. There are ways to market and advertise your music without "selling out" as independent music artist.

Think of your fans, they are your best promoters and marketers! Marketing isn't all about dealing with media and big corporations. If you're not comfortable with dealing with those people, forget about them and focus on your fan base. Have you considered provided them with ways to "spread the word." They may already be doing just this for you. Fans probably already market for you and they will be your most passionate music contacts and promoters.

So now, you just must increase your fan base's size and your marketing will increase. See, this is done without the use of those outlets you may despise. What is better than that? What do your fans love about your music? Once you know this, it becomes even easier to find more prospective fans that would also be interested in your music and your message.

Independent music marketing does not have to be corporate nor selling out, now does it? You are sharing what you love with those who love what you do. Use this concept to your advantage. The music industry is all about money and there is money to be made. Take a little piece of the pie without feeling like you are turning your back on your beliefs.
 Author Resource:-  Owner of Platinum Millennium publishing, former record label owner & national music industry seminar speaker/panelist. Author/creator of best-selling music biz books, courses, audio products & "How to" resources that helped 1000s. Go to for more info on music contacts, music industry & independent music.

How to Record Your First Demo CD

 Recording a first demo CD is a big step in the direction of being a professional musician. It is not every day that an artist steps up and decides to present themselves professionally to the world, which in effect is what a demo CD really is. For an artist, a demo CD is very much like a resume, a portfolio of the highest quality, and a calling card. Getting it right is important, and presenting it well is equally as important.

Recording your first demo CD will take time and money, something that most musicians have precious little, and the steps taken in preparation will enable you to make the most of your time in the studio. When choosing your studio setting, you have two options. You can pay the higher costs (which typically results in higher quality) for the use of a pre-existing high name studio or you can find local garage talent. In many cases, local garage talent will be more patient, will be more willing to offer suggestions and help you through the process, and will charge you less. The quality of the demo will be acceptable, sometimes even very high, if you find the right garage talent. This requires asking around … a lot … and listening to some previously recorded demo CDs.

Technology has advanced far enough ahead and has become cost effective enough that many professionals can now build their own recording studios right in their own garage, sound proofed spare room, or somewhere on their property. So can amateurs. This is actually good for the industry and many musicians are even beginning to learn how to build their own recording studios to create their own demo CDs. However, having your own recording equipment and having all the qualities of a good recording studio are two very different animals. You can find affordable, high quality amateur/professional recording without breaking the bank that will be of admirable quality if you look hard enough.

Once you are sure of the direction you want to head and have either found your garage talent or have booked yourself with a professional high end sound studio, the key to your success lies in your talent as well as your preparation. No matter how cool you are, you're going to be stoked and getting your foot in the door is going to feel very powerful to you. You must prepare so that your emotions don't take you out of your element and ruin your time allotted.

Preparation means organization, it means knowing exactly what you're going to do from the moment you step into the sound booth until the moment you step out. Ironically, it also means being a little bit flexible in case there's an issue out of your control that might delay or offset your intentions. Preparation means, aside from the obvious of knowing the music so well you could record it backwards while eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, having your equipment tuned, ready, in top working order and being emotionally ready to do what you do best.

If you are using live musicians, each of them needs to meet the same standard of organization that you are aiming to achieve. There is nothing more frustrating than having to wait on, cater to, and continuously replay for the benefit of one musician out of the bunch who can't seem to get his or her goodies in gear. Have a little meeting the night before and go over a written checklist as well as a little "pep" talk to help the musicians around you live up to their potential. Hours will be spent on each individual recording, so you are going to want you and your crew well rested, and relaxed so everyone can do the one thing that will make a higher quality demo CD. Have some fun.

Every musician knows, and this applies to recording your first demo CD, that the instant a musician is wound up, nervous, and focused on everything but the music, something will sound off no matter how well they are able to cover their emotions. There is a fantastic quality that comes through when a musician is relaxed and enjoying him or herself in the process. This is vital to creating the best demo CD possible.

From start to finish, recording your first demo CD should be an experience that you learn from, enjoy, and of course, create the perfect CD for you and your goals. This can be done with preparation, practice, a little guidance from those who "know a great who can help you out," and enough faith in yourself to have fun while performing.
 Author Resource:-  Kevin Sinclair is the publisher and editor of, a site that provides information and articles for musicians at all stages of their development.

How Musicians Can Use Podcasts to Publicize Their Music

As a musician, one of the best ways to start becoming successful in the music business is to build up a fan base.

You need to get your music out there so people can start listening to it and enjoying it. Publicizing your music is extremely important, and while ten years ago it may have been a difficult task, technology has afforded you some very simples ways to get started. One new way that you can start getting your music out there is by using a podcast. Podcasts are excellent ways that you can inexpensively and quickly get your music out there to the public, which is extremely important to your success as a musician.

What Exactly is a Podcast?

First of all, you may be wondering what exactly a podcast is. Basically, a podcast is a type of audio file that is usually created in a mp3 format, and after the file is created it can be uploaded to a server by way of Really Simple Syndication (RSS). You can put anything you want on this type of audio file, whether it is a type of radio show, or even clips of you performing your music. Once a podcast is uploaded onto the internet, it then allows people to use their computers with specialized software to download the file so they can listen to it on their own. They may be able to listen to it on their computer, an mp3 player, or even on their iPod as well. Even though the terms sound a bit technical, the process is an easy one that gives you a great new way to get your music out there to others.

How to Create a Podcast

Believe it or not, creating your own podcast is really quite simple. The following are five simple steps that can help you easily create your own music podcast.

1. Create the Content – The first thing you need to do is to create the audio content for your podcast. It really does not matter what type of platform you use when creating your audio content; however, it is important that you save it in the maximum quality possible so you have a great copy of what you have created. This is especially important when you are dealing with music.

2. Convert to MP3 – Once you have created your audio content for the podcast, you will need to convert the files to mp3 files, since they are the most used type of files for podcasting. When converting your audio files to mp3 files, you will probably want to use 128 stereo bit rate in order to get the best sound, since you are dealing with music, then save it as an mp3 file.

3. Upload the MP3 – After you have created your mp3 file, then you are ready to upload the file to the server. Once they are uploaded, be sure to test them to be sure that they are working.

4. Create the RSS File – Next you will need to create an RSS file, which will describe your pod cast and serve as the link to your mp3 file. You can use a text editor to create this file, and usually it is best to include the title of the file, the link, and a brief description of the file as well.

5. Publish the File – Once you have the RSS file created, just transfer it to your web server, and be sure to validate it using an RSS validator, which you can find online. If it works right, then you are ready to publish the RSS file.

Equipment You Will Need

In order to be able to do a pod cast, you will need to have the right equipment available. First of all you will need to have the right equipment available to suitably record your music. You may be able to purchase software for your computer to do this, or you may want to use a mixing board with a CD burner to do so. You can use computer software to edit your music and to change the levels to make sure that your music tracks sound the best as well. Also, you will need a program to help you convert your music into mp3 files, such a MusicMatch. More than likely, you will also need software that will help you upload your mp3 and RSS files as well.

Where You Can Send Your Completed Podcast

If you do not have your own place to put your podcasts, you can actually find free hosts that will allow you to upload your podcasts to their servers as well. Once you have finished your podcast and you have it online, there are a variety of directories that you can send it to in order to get some exposure. There are many available free directories that will help you with publicity so you can get your podcasts out there. Soon people will be listening to your music, and before you know it you may have a broad fan base all across the world due to using podcasting to publicize your music.
 Author Resource:-  Duane Shinn is the author of the popular free 101-week online e-mail newsletter titled "Amazing Secrets Of Exciting Piano Chords & Sizzling Chord Progressions- Intelligent Piano Lessons For Adults Only! " with over 84,400 current subscribers.

Horseshoe Tavern

370 Queen St. W.


Pic of the Horseshoe Tavern


The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern is closing in on its 52nd anniversary as a live music venue. Originally known as a Country Roots n’ Rockabilly Music Tavern, The ‘Shoe welcomed Blues and Folk in the ‘60s, Reggae, Mod Rock, and Punk in the ‘70s, New Wave and Alt Pop in the ‘80s, and everything from Ska, Surf, Swing, Celtic, No Depression Folk, Insurgent Country, Cow-Punk, and Alternative Modern Rock in the ‘90s.

Historically speaking, the ‘Shoe is mythologized as the venue that gave birth to legendary Canadian artists like Blue Rodeo, The Tragically Hip, The Watchmen, Big Sugar, Amanda Marshall, Wide Mouth Mason, Great Big Sea, Stompin’ Tom Connors, The Band, Prairie Oyster, and played host to the Toronto debuts of International mega-stars, The Police, Hootie & The Blowfish, and emerging superstars, Wilco, Ben Harper, Son Volt, Johnny Lang, Cornershop, Everclear, Tracey Bonham, Goldfinger, Paula Cole, Sneaker Pimps, Leahy, not to mention ground breaking shows by the likes of The Ramones, Cramps, Dick Dale, Link Wray, Golden Smog, Los Lobos, RL Burnside, Super Furry Animals, Gomez, and Neutral Milk Hotel.

It was the venue featured on Live on MTV in September of 1997, when the Rolling Stones began their No Security Tour with a thundering 75 minute show.

So it’s a nightly occurrence for international artists, managers, agents, producers, DJ's, and local industry movers and shakers to be hanging in the audience, and every now and then, artists play unannounced. In the last three years alone, this 375 seat venue has hosted the likes of Bryan Adams, The ‘Hip, Melissa Ethridge, The Blues Brothers, Live, Sloan, Billy Bragg, Crowded House, Big Sugar, Prairie Oyster, Bruce Cockburn, Teenie Hodges with Otis Clay, and Sammy Hagar!

Ordinarily, the Shoe features just the very best in Canadian national touring acts, and International, Surf, Rockabilly, Blues, No Depression Insurgent Country, Swing, Alt Modern Rock, and weekly community-indie artist development programs, like Shoeless Monday’s, and the internationally acclaimed Tuesday Nu Music Nites!

With a solid reputation of being, first and foremost, artist and industry friendly, with pitch-perfect sound, and a prime location in the heart of downtown Toronto – in the Queen Street West musical district, the ‘Shoe remains one of the quintessential live music venues, if not THEE artist development venue, in the country.

Artists who have played the ‘Shoe recently include The Jayhawks, 10,000 Maniacs, Old 97’s, Whiskeytown, Jason & The Scorchers, Sparklehorse, Bare Jr, Jim Cuddy, Slobberbone, Blue Mountain, Jonathan Richman, Vic Chesnutt, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Townes Van Zant, Spirit of The West, Skydiggers, Mahones, Saw Doctors, Rheostatics, Paperboys, 54:40, Rambling Jack Elliott, Arlo Guthrie, Gatemouth Brown, Koko Taylor, James Cotton, Holmes Brothers, John Hammond, Fab T-Birds, NRBQ, Buckwheat Zydeco, Steve Cropper, Ronnie Earl, Southern Culture, Elvez!, Sleepy Labeef, Big Rude Jake, Marshall Crenshaw, Neko Case, The Sadies, Los Straightjackets, Chixdiggit!, Huevous Rancheros, Fleshtones, Dash Rip Rock, Mojo Nixon, Thee Heacoats, The Makers, The Oblivians, Reel Big Fish, Olivia Tremor Control, Sam Prekop, Jesus Lizard, Promise Ring, Bloodhound Gang, Barney Bentall, Sass Jordan, 7 Mary 3, Eels, Therapy, Refreshments, Holly Mcnarland, Barstool Prophets, Ash, Weeping Tile, Pluto, Killjoys, Soul Coughing, Nada Surf, Citizen King, Foutains of Wayne, Manic Street Preachers, Imani Coppola, Meredith Brooks, Tanya Donnely, and Throwing Muses.

In the future, the ‘Shoe will remain ‘Against The Grain’, and continue to deliver the best in cutting-edge Roots, Modern Alt Rock, and straight ahead heartfelt Rock N Roll!


Craig Laskey
Contact Craig from 1 – 9 pm
 phone: 416-598-0720
 fax: 416-598-2230

JC (Jeff Cohen)

Theresa Stanley
Contact Theresa from noon – 8 pm
phone: 416-598-0720
 fax: 416-598-2230

Upcoming Toronto Bands Playing At The Horseshoe Tavern: