With free and high-quality video chat options like FaceTime and Skype, songwriting collaboration at a distance is a truly viable option and can broaden your list of co-writers. Skype can even allow up to twenty-five people to be on the same video call at the same time - although I’m not sure that would be my recommended number of collaborators. Another great boon is the opportunity that Google Docs provides for multiple participants to look at - and edit - the same lyric sheet at the same time which can be a huge help when it comes to keeping tabs on the evolution of your song’s lyric during a long-distance co-writing session using one of the available chat options. Using both video calling and Google Docs at the same time works beautifully.
Getting your demos recorded by the world class session musicians and studio vocalists that the big music cities have to offer used to require either a trip to Nashville, NYC or Los Angeles, or taking a chance mailing a rough recording of your song to a studio in one of those cities and hoping they shared your vision for how your finished demo should sound. Now, studios have the ability to send a high-quality audio - and video - stream through services like UStream.tv to their clients wherever they are in the world. As a producer with a studio in Nashville, I’ve had clients listen in to their studio sessions from their homes in Taiwan, Australia and even an oil rig off the coast of Scotland!
Another area where technology has greatly changed the lives of songwriters for the better is in how we pitch our songs. These days, by using free online storage services like DropBox you can simply send a link to your songs in your email. This works well not only because it only requires the recipient to click on a link to hear your song, but also because links take up zero “space” and won’t clog up their inbox. In addition, this method does not require the use of social media, although as an artist, you probably want to be on platforms to market yourself and your songs, if you’re ready to do that.
A great, cost-effective way of promoting your songs is by placing a simple lyric video of one of your songs on YouTube where you can reach an almost infinite number of listeners with your work. But you’d be well advised not to market yourself before you’re ready because first impressions are hard to overcome!
Cliff Goldmacher is a songwriter, music producer and educator with recording studios in Nashville, TN and Sonoma, CA. Through his studios, Cliff provides songwriters outside of Nashville with virtual, live access to Nashville’s best session musicians and demo singers for their songwriting demos. To find out more go to www.CliffGoldmacher.com/studio. You can download Cliff’s FREE tip sheet “A Dozen Quick Fixes To Instantly Improve Your Songs” by going to https://se295.infusionsoft.com/app/form/homepage-songwriting-tip-sheet.