It may sound a little cliché, but each artist is their own journey of discovery. For some, the roadblocks will seem impassable at the first hurdle; for others, there will be a little engine trouble down the line that means some fine-tuning is needed.
With that said, experienced A&R reps and artist development executives have a wealth of experience behind them; checking in with them is often the best way to ensure smooth sailing. Below, we have curated some of our best tips for artist development success.
Four industry-approved tips on how to develop your style as an artist
- Grab a Slice of Humble Pie
If we had a pound for every time that we received a submission from an artist claiming to be a genius, a prodigy, or someone that can take a whole audience’s breath away with just one vocal note, we’d probably be richer than Elon Musk. More often than not, the aural bark doesn’t match the bite.
The point is, many artists can get wrapped up in the idea that they’re the next big thing in any given genre once their career starts gaining traction. When it comes to a downtick in acclaim, it is no wonder that it can feel like a nosedive into career suicide for some. The trick is to stay humble. Recognise that there is always room for development in your creative abilities and your brand identity.
- Work with the Best Producers
Producers can make or break a record. Usually, they do the former. Every artist starts with an idea of what the final product should sound like when they enter a studio. If your production team deviate from the aural dream, don’t be quick to reject their idea. Now, we’re talking about *real* music producers here, the ones with years of studio experience behind them, not beatmakers that are found on YouTube. If you’re working with one of those, we’d highly recommend investing in a producer with some level of respect in the genre – they don’t always have to cost the earth.
- Invest in Artist Development Services
Music artist development services help to solidify and spotlight an artist’s brand. The reputation of artist development companies depends on their ability to guide musicians in the right direction. After all, an artist development company is only as attractive as their most successful campaign.
The award-winning artist development team at A&R Factory have launched many successful campaigns that increase the fans, followers and reach of artists. This is done through advising artists where to spend their money in relation to production and marketing and getting artists playlist spots and features in popular publications.
- Find Your Signature Sound
When asking yourself how you want to develop your style as an artist, are you striving for commercial success or the ability to be a better artist and songwriter? If you’re fixated on maximising your commercial potential, you will overlook one of the most valuable tools at your disposal; autonomy.
If David Bowie, Frank Zappa, Prince and Nirvana stayed inside the popularly coloured lines, would they have made it to the heights they did? Probably not. Those artists stirred something within their wide fanbases by disrupting the status quo – not the band – and finding something powerful and expressive within themselves. Why be Megadeath when you could be Metallica; why be Greta Van Fleet when you can be Led Zeppelin – you get the idea.