JOIN ME ON USTREAM TUESDAY, MAY 18TH 2010, FOR A LIVE DISCUSSION ABOUT MY NEW ALBUM,
“THE OBAMA MILLI REMIX GUY STRIKES BACK!”
Follow me at http://www.ustream.tv/aptsongs

In gearing up for my album – “The Obama Milli Remix Guy Strikes Back,” out June 8th, 2010 – I’ve been going through tracks and trying to cut down the amount of songs on the album.

Now, in this day of and age of music where an artist can post up their own songs on iTunes, one could technically post up however many songs they want to, collectively, on ONE album.  The service I use allows you to post up an album for $46.99, and the LIMIT for the amount of songs you can put on that album is – are you ready for this? – one HUNDRED songs.

A new artist might look at this and think: “Oh man oh man, that’s AWESOME! I can put up an album of 100 songs, and it’ll only cost the buyer 9.99?!?  I’m going to post ALL my songs up right now!”

And logically speaking, it would appear, at first, to make sense.  After all, $9.99 is a BARGAIN to pay for so many songs.

BUT…

An artist who did that would be lucky to sell even ONE album.

Placing TOO many tracks on an album – especially for an artist that’s unestablished – is a DEATH sentence for your career.

A few things new artists should consider:

  • Music is a activity of choice and time.  When someone sees your name or hears about your music, they are making 2 choices: (a) whether or not they want to get to know your stuff, and (b) how much time they want to invest getting to know you.
  • If they don’t know you, they don’t want to hear much from you.  This is why when record companies have a new artist, they start off by releasing ONE single at a time.  It’s a way for them to say: “We have an artist you might like.  We  know you don’t want to hear a lot of music from this unknown artist, but give this ONE song a chance.  If you like it, there is more, and we can tell you where to get it.”
  • If someone DOES like the ONE song you put out, they may want to test out more of your stuff by buying your album… but if there are too many songs or it’s too long, their brain starts thinking about how much time they’ll have to spend with you (via listening to your album) and they may back off.

Remember: things often work the OPPOSITE of the way we think they should.  One assumes that offering more songs at a discounted price would make people want to buy their stuff, when in actuality they’d be better off putting together an album of 10 to 12 songs.  The possible consumer will see the album and, instead of thinking:

  • “Aw, this album doesn’t have enough songs on it! I’m not gonna buy it at all!”

They will think:

  • “Hmm, a new artist, eh? Well, I liked that one song… I guess I could buy it.  It’s only 10 songs – what’s that, like 35 minutes? I can spare some time listening to this!”

As for me… well, I’ve had a hit song, and I’ve released an album on iTunes, “Attack of the Obama Milli Remix Guy!” That album was 12 songs long, which sprawls out to about 46 minutes.  It’s long enough so people think they’re getting a good deal, but not so long that people will start to get bored with me.  Yes, I’m an artist and I think my songs are the shiznit, but I also know that, after a while, no matter how good an artist is, people are going to want to listen to someone else.

And if they just want to listen to my stuff? Well, having a shorter amount of songs will leave them wanting for more, which only helps me to sell the NEXT album (coming in… oh, wait, let me get this NEW one out the door first before I start talking about THAT)!

-A.P.T.

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