Friday, June 22, 2012

Get Paid When Your Digital Recording is Played!!!! - Register with SoundExchange Today!

A couple of years ago, I entered the world of internet radio as an internet radio show host. At that time, in an effort to keep my expenses as low as possible, I decided to launch my show under the umbrella of an already established, terrestrial radio station. However, because of station politics, and just plain outdated station equipment from the seventies, that was only functional 60% of the time, I began to explore other options. What I discovered was, that if I wanted to be totally independent of the politics associated with joining forces with another company's station, I would have to make a sizeable investment of my own to maintain my independence. One of the expenses I began to calculate into my start-up costs, was licensing to play the recordings of independent and signed artists; of course there are always ways to cut corners, but I wanted to be fair and professional about it, which entailed paying for the licensing necessary to play digital recordings. At that time, I was the entrepreneur thinking of cashing in, as opposed to the artist interested in getting something back for all of their hard work. Today, I am the entrepreneur interested in educating artists so they can begin to receive their just due.

SoundExchange (Wikipedia Definition) is a non-profit performance rights organization that collects royalties on behalf of sound recording copyright owners (SRCOs - record labels, generally) and featured artists for non-interactive digital transmissions, including Satellite and internet radio.

First things first, if you are an artist who has a recording or recordings being played on internet radio stations, go ahead and Register with SoundExchange so you can receive your royalties. Please watch this video in its entirety. In five minutes, it explains in detail, how to register for this FREE service.

The New York Times recently published an article on June 17, 2012 entitled, "Royalties From Digital Radio Start to Add Up" written by Ben Sisario. Three very important things to note about the article - 1) SoundExchange announced the day after the article was published that it has paid $1 billion dollars to artists and record companies since it was founded in 2000; 2) Clear Channel Communications recently announced a direct deal with Big Deal, which is Taylor Swift's record company and 3) at the end of 2010, SoundExchange was holding $132 million dollars in unclaimed/non-distributable funds. What does this mean for you as the artists? means a few things; as compared to 2000 when SoundExchange was born, there is more money to distribute now. And although some of the major players (literally, players of the music) are making direct deals with major record companies and going around SoundExchange legally to do it, this has nothing whatsoever to do with the tons of internet shows popping up everyday, that are also required to pay the licensing fee SoundExchange cuts checks from to pay the artists.

I didn't mean for the Blog to be this long, but I hope it encourages you to handle your business. Take the time to register and then check the P.L.A.Y.S. database (performance log archive of your songs). This is how you would be able to check to see if monies are being held by SoundExchange and waiting to be claimed by you TODAY. (To my musicians and other non-featured artists, you may have money coming to you as well, so please go ahead and get registered too.)

I'd like to give a shoutout to David E.Maxwell, administrator of the "Christian Musician Connection" group on Facebook, for reminding me about SoundExchange. There are times I don't blog because I'm looking for something really juicy to cover. This one definitely fits the bill. Please support David by checking out his blog at

Now I need your support too. If you have found this article to be helpful, please do the following: Send me a Facebook Request  Join this Blog, hit that G+1 button at the bottom of this blog, post a comment, and help increase my artist's chances of appearing in Tyler Perry's movie by Voting for Kina at   Also, if you are looking for an opportunity to be seen on Cable television by more than 2.8 million viewers, submit a link to your online GOSPEL video (yes, GOSPEL, meaning, no TWERKING or Fist Fighting) to PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE include 'Gospel Cable Show Video Submission' in the subject line. I get so many emails, I have tears coming out of my eyes from staring at the screen for soooooo long trying to figure out why some people are contacting me at all. Don't make me cry Y'ALL!!!

Remember to keep God First in all you do and he will make a way out of no way for you. Amen!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Post in Groups for More Site Traffic/List of Top 20 FB Groups

If you have your email notifications turned on, you will see there are some organizations and individuals who can at best be described as "Serial Posters". It appears as if they are posting every hour on the hour. Some of them present new or revised content every hour and others are posting the same stale announcement without any revisions at all. Now although I haven't checked in with everyone, I have conversed with a few "Serial Posters", however, one conversation I had recently with Sam His-Hop Stewart, founder of the Facebook Group "His Hop Music Let's Change the World" sticks out in my mind. One late night, several months ago, after he commented on one of my blogs, we found ourselves talking on the phone. Sam mentioned to me his desire to increase traffic on his site, but because I wasn't in a position to get directly involved with the marketing of his site, I gave him a list of some of the top Facebook groups instead. When I checked back in with him about a month later, for something totally unrelated, I casually asked him how the groups were working for him and he told me his site traffic had gone up something like 500%. If you think I am stretching the truth, you may look this gentleman up yourself on Facebook, but rather than doing that, why don't you just invest time in getting started with the promotion of whatever it is you are promoting through these groups.

Now before I give you this listing, which you have probably skimmed through the previous paragraph to get to, but it's not here, "LOL", I want everyone reading this to know, I have witnessed the same type of results. In fact, because I don't like the idea of being a "Repeat Serial Poster" ("Serial Poster" suits me just fine), I can see the numbers Sam is seeing by increasing the amount of times I blog. (We're working on it). Trust me...I wouldn't give you any advice on something I haven't already put to the test myself, directly or indirectly. The bottom line is, if it is free and costs you nothing, why not try it.

I don't charge for the advice I give you here by way of my blog, however, before I give you this listing, I need you to do some things for me. NUMBER ONE: If you look to your right, there is a JOIN button. Please click it so you can start receiving this Blog as soon as it is published. NUMBER TWO: It's a a lot of people TWEETING and what not, simply because they can, and although I'm not sure why they have as many followers as they do, I've been told our TWEETS have caffeine shots in 'em; so do me and yourself a favor and follow us @UGTKONation on Twitter to jump start your day after you've prayed of course. NUMBER THREE: If you send me a friend request on Facebook, I will accept it, unless I get to your page and find you doing something you ain't got no business doing. 
If you have made it this far, you might as well go ahead and add NUMBER FOUR: which is real simple, please click the SHARE button to the right of this entry, right above the JOIN button.  I'm done begging, so here we go!

Okay...Here it is....THE MOMENT YOU'VE BEEN WAITING FOR; OR RATHER THE LISTING (In no particular order) YOU'VE BEEN WAITING FOR (Drum Roll Please) 

  1. Prayzefest Gospel Network
  2.  Social Therapy Magazine
  3. What is Kina (the Prophetic Poet) Up to Now?
  4. Christian Musician Connection
  5. America's Next Top Gospel Starz
  6. Busy Streets Holy Hip Hop
  7. His Hop Music Let's Change the World
  8. Entertainment Forte Style NETWORK
  9. Christian Artist, Producers, &  Industry, Meet and Greet
  10. The Stellar Gospel Music Awards
  11. Dead to Flesh Records
  12. Hallelujah Magazine
  13. Philly Apollo (You don't have to be a resident of Philly to join.)
  14. The Empire Business Network
  15. FB Music Network Inc.
  16. For Booking Contact Us Network
  17. True Swagg Radio
  18. Team Mo J.O.E. (Jesus Over Everything)
  19. Upcoming Events
  20. (R)ep (U)r (N)oise for Christ by Calvary Clique
  21. Bonus Group: Casting Calls (Rizen Star Talent News) (Special Note, please don't go to my homegirl's group and start posting before you look around. This site is designed for the multi-faceted aspiring gospel artist. Check out the casting calls and post if you have something meaningful to offer the group.)
Do us both a favor and add yourself to these groups today! It will take you about a good 10-15 to do so. After you get this done, sign up for HootSuite, so you don't have to spend an hour or more manually posting to each and every group. Last, but not least, holler at your girl, Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1 to let me know how it all turned out.  God Bless each and every one of you.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Help! I Needed Management Yesterday!

As you probably already know, the further along you get in your career, the more of a need there is for management for both goal setting and accountability purposes. But what exactly does a manager do and how much should you pay for his or her services?

The first thing you should consider is what type of management you are seeking. Do you need a Personal Manager, or do you need a Business Manager? A personal manager would be the type of person who follows up with contacts you make after you've done an event. He or she may also gather detailed information you pass on to him or her about possible opportunities to gain more exposure or earn income for your gift. The business manager on the other hand, is the one who reviews contracts and riders to make sure everything is in order. If you are doing a show, the business manager is the one who will send out the paperwork outlining the payment plan, and if the remaining balance is required upon arrival of his or her artist the day of the event, will be the first one to shut it down by saying, "My artist will not be stepping on your raggedy stage until the rest of the money has been paid." A business manager may also protect the image of the artist, since you don't have a PR manager until you reach the big leagues. The business manager's role is much more proactive, whereas the Personal Manager is more like an errand runner who doesn't do too much physical running around, but keeps up with your daily administrative needs. Some of you may be lucky to find the best of both worlds in one person willing to serve as both Personal and Business Manager.

As an artist, you need to understand that where you are trying to go, may be easier to get to, by employing the services of someone willing to invest time in assisting you with coming up with a strategy on how to get there. Ask your manager to help you to come up with the ideas about the best way to market your gift and be sure to follow through. Keep in mind "Ambient Intimacy" works fine on Facebook and email, but the two of you should have at least one phone conversation per week to make sure everything is running smoothly and on track. Your manager probably already gets a ton of emails and Facebook notifications, so if you wish to keep yourself at the top of that manager's priority list, if an in person meeting is not possible, at least a weekly phone meeting should do.

Now I bet you are wondering, how much should one pay for management services. It really should be based upon your budget since you haven't made the big time yet. However, because I am a manager, I will suggest you pay an amount that reminds you of why you even have management. Okay...before you jump down my throat with, "I hear you talking, but I'm from the "Show Me First State"---- You know, show me what you can do, and then I'll pay you." That may work fine with someone who is experimenting, but with someone who isn't and has a proven track record, you may be told instead of asked, what the fee will be and how often it is due.

Artist Management can be a very labor intensive job, so be respectful of the dynamics of human nature. Like my grandmother used to say, when you need something from someone, be sure to sprinkle your words with a little sugar and remember you can never get blood out of a turnip. (If neither of these old adages makes any sense to you, Google that when you have a moment. Lol.)

UGTKONation provides management services, but at the present moment, is not in a position to take on new artists, because of our current involvement with the production of our very own Gospel Television show. If you would like to find out how you may participate in our show which will allow us access to 2.8 million homes, please text or call 214.779.2097. For encouragement, details on what's happening in the World News as it relates to Christianity, and witty, shareable quotes, please follow us @UGTKONation 
God Bless you all until the next time.