Have you ever asked your Mum (or your friends) what they think of your tracks?
I know I have…we all do… and there’s a time and a place for it (usually when we want to feel good!), but it won’t help us improve.
Why not? Well, unless your Mum is one cool cat, or your friends are bang into production as much as you, the chances are they simply don’t have the impartial ear of a fellow producer.
Add to that they don’t want to hurt your feelings, and suddenly the feedback isn’t quite as useful as it could be.
This is why getting HONEST, BRUTAL feedback is SO important in our journey as producers.
Introducing Jason Grishkoff, the founder of SubmitHub.com; a website designed specifically for getting (and giving) honest feedback from and to fellow producers (plus more).
[HINT: If you want to get your music released..trust me, you’ll want to read this]:
Will: Hi Jason, thanks for joining us! For those who haven't yet heard of SubmitHub, what is it?
Jason: Hi Will! SubmitHub is a little website I created that makes it easy for musicians and producers to send their music to blogs, labels and YouTube channels -- and *actually* get a response.
Will: Tell us a little about yourself…how did you come up with the idea for SubmitHub?
Jason: I started a music blog called Indie Shuffle back in 2009, and as the website became more established and built up a reputation, an increasing number of music submissions came in every day. Eventually it got so bad that by ~2014 I was receiving nearly 300 emails a day from artists, labels and publicists asking me to review their songs. I couldn't handle the volume, and like many other bloggers out there I gave up and began to ignore all of my submissions. That ended up being pretty darn frustrating for anyone trying to reach me.
So late in 2015 I decided to code a solution. I wanted all of the submissions to come through in a super simple feed / stream of songs where I could hit play and simply give a thumbs up or thumbs down. The concept worked, and before I knew it a) I was actually listening to all my submissions again; and b) a bunch of other blogs had reached out to ask if they could use it, too.
Will: Why is feedback from other producers so important?
Jason: Getting various opinions is always helpful - especially when it's from your peers. Fellow producers not only provide technical tips; they can also let you know whether you're on the right track or not.
Will: Why is having your music submitted to blogs important?
Jason: Once you've got a finished product, the next step is to pick up listeners. Ideally lots of them. But how do you do that without buying a bunch of Facebook ads or fake plays and followers? Well, for the last ~15 years, the answer has been: bloggers.
Who are bloggers? Typically they're regular people who happen to have a passion for music. Most of them don't have any song-writing or production skills; they just like to discover quality songs and share them with their fans. Some of them have huge audiences; others only a few hundred. What links them all together though is that they spend hours every day listening to hundreds of songs so that they can find the two or three that they think will resonate with their fans.
Collectively, bloggers can be very influential. Spotify's playlist editors, radio jockeys, and major record labels monitor the blogs (using websites like Hype Machine) to figure out which new acts they should feature. So it's not just about plays or listeners you'll pick up from that blog post -- it's about *who* is paying attention to those blogs. You never know where your big break might come from, so as an artist in 2017 you need to take as many avenues as possible to get your music out there.
Will: Why send your music to labels?
Jason: Modern-day labels can help you "run your business" so that you can focus on making music. Keep an eye out for labels who have expertise with things like "sync deals" -- ie, getting your music into the soundtrack of a Netflix show. These days that's one of the most impactful things that can happen in an artist's career.
Will: How should people get started with Submit?
Jason: It's simple: just head to www.submithub.com/submit to send your song to bloggers. But be warned -- they're a very picky bunch (the average rejection rate is more than 90%).
Will: Thanks again, Jason!
And there you have it, guys.. some great reasons to seek out impartial feedback (and to give it, too). We're all on this journey together, and outside feedback - although painful - is one of the most valuable ways to gauge our progress. Our greatest progress is always on the other side of that discomfort!
Check out SubmitHub.com here, and you can get involved and sign-up for free.