Get Signed by a Major

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Dan Carter a journalist and professional writer for Beatport New interviewed some of most influential A&R guys in the industrie. He talked to five of the biggest labels in the world, Size Records, Big Beat, Spinnin, Axtone, and Refune. His goal was to find out what a beginning artist should do, or shouldn’t do when contacting a label. In these interviews you can find some great advise. Simon Hills, label and artist manager, Axtone

First off, don’t think that A&R guys don’t love receiving demos. Signing new artists is what we are all about. As a general rule of thumb, avoid sending a bootleg unless you have really reinvented the wheel, as this area is completely saturated at the present. Contacting the right person is uber-important—you have spent months on making a track so the least you can do is spend a few minutes finding the right person, as a personal email to make that first connection can make all the difference. As a side note to this, if you cant find these details, DO NOT send an industry-wide email with all A&Rs on CC—this is a major no and a huge professional turn-off.

Don’t explain what is wrong with the track—just provide cold hard facts about yourself and most importantly, be honest, as it doesn’t necessarily matter if this is your first attempt. Being your own worst critic can really help the process, so definitely gauge some opinions from fellow DJs and producers before submitting, as regrettably your family and friends may not always provide the most constructive feedback available. Compare your music to other tracks and artists that you admire and aspire to be as good as. Can you honestly say it would stand up in aDJ’s set after their biggest track? It is also worth saying that you shouldn’t feel bad if you get a “no” first time. The contact has been made and the door is then open for future offerings. Mark Jackson, various label- and artist-management roles, Size, Refune, Phazing, Ultra Music Europe Don’t be pushy as far getting a...
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