Jon's Maxims

Over the years bands have received coaching from me on their next steps, what I think they're strengths / weaknesses are, how to get a record contract, etc.

If you're up for coaching, just drop me a line at

In the mean time, however, I have a few maxims that may be the turning point for you with regard to changing your music career around.

I'll update these when I can.

What is a maxim?

a short, pithy statement expressing a general truth or rule of conduct.

An example of a maxim might be:

Poor people spend their money first, and invest what's left.
Rich people invest their money first, and spend what's left.

I've found over the years, that bands who have made it are doing things differently than bands who are struggling.  Similar to poor people versus rich people, it's a difference of mechanics involving the same technology and the same assets.

Remember, we all have the same amount of time in a day.  Not one person on this entire planet has less time or has more time than you do.

Let's dive in!

Maxim #1

Poor bands release material, and then seek a record contract.
Rich bands seek a record contract, and then release material.

Bands who find themselves struggling to "get signed" usually have a unicorn fantasy mentality with regard to what a record label is and does for them.  It's best to think of a record label as a partner in the process of being a music creation machine.  Show them what you have and discuss partnering together to release it, rather than releasing on your own and then showing a label what you did in the past.

Maxim #2

Poor bands think about the band first, and then think about the brand.
Rich bands think about the brand first, and then think about the band.

Bands who find themselves struggling to get ahead and attract a rich fan base usually have no sense of what their brand identity is as a unit.  They have albums of material that span from jazz to fusion to rock to hip hop to country and are proud to be lacking any uniform material, albeit musically or lyrically.  People like to hold things inside of boxes, and like to have confidence in knowing what you offer as a unit, both musically and lyrically.  Subsequently, if band members come and go, it's a significantly less emotional experience, because the brand identity is still in tact, and can still carry on regardless of who fills in live or in the studio.

Maxim #3

Poor bands produce songs first, and then write songs.
Rich bands write songs first, and then produce songs.

Bands who find themselves struggling to have people resonate with their songs would be surprised to find out that they don't have songs in the first place.  They maybe have a Frankenstein of riffs and pick scrapes.  A side-by-side comparison of a band doing well would show songs that can be produced in any style or genre, that were actively chosen to be produced in the style and genre that the brand identity represents.  If a song that has been written by the band members doesn't fit into the brand identity, then the song is sold to another brand identity that can make use of the material in line with their goals and brand identity.

Maxim #4

Poor bands make social media posts first, and then put in the work.
Rich bands put in the work first, and then post about it on social media.

Bands who find themselves struggling to be found are also usually making worthless posts on social media, as if any band ever in the history of the world ever made it big by using just marketing.  Social media is a free marketing tool to discuss what you and your brand are up to for people to find out more about you and your brand.  Notice I said brand, not band, because this is marketing a business that we're talking about here.  Think of any band that is currently established, look back upon their career, and you'll find that they worked through it, and in the case of Foo Fighters, Metallica, AC/DC or Iron Maiden, you'll also see absolutely no social media posts - because it hadn't been invented yet.

No comments:

Post a Comment