Should You Have A Demo, A Master, A Single or an Album Produced?

 

DannyThompson Royalty Check

Dan Thompson’s first quarter U.S. radio airplay royalty check from Sound Exchange for the single Miles and Miles produced by Bill Watson at Nashville Trax, It did even better overseas.

“My first royalty check for the Miles & Miles release in the US… This is for one Quarter.. Miles & Miles was played over 1000 times per week in the US… it did really good.. Thanks for the great work Bill!” – Dan Thompson

Your song is finished, now what? You aren’t capable of producing a professional quality recording on your own so you need a demo produced.

Or do you need a master? But if a master, how do you get it on the radio?

They seem to have the same basic steps, what’s the difference between a master and a demo anyway?

You’re confused. Let’s clear that up!

As this time the cost to have  a four to six piece band with a session singer demo produced at Nashville Trax is $750 to $1,400.

Each song production is unique but, in general, the higher price point may include background vocals, more instruments, better musicians and more time spent on the mix. A demo mix requires between 45 minutes to about 3 hours of mix time.

You’d do a demo if initial cost is a huge issue and the song will be used mainly to pitch to music publishers and other A & R industry professionals.

Some of our clients have assembled demos into an album and burned it on a CD but in most cases they aren’t true airplay quality. If you want radio airplay you really need to let us know that upfront, bite the bullet, and invest the additional money to ensure we deliver that.

Some of our clients have successfully attracted investors with a demo. For example, client Chad Barnes of Phoenix Arizona was able to interest an investor in putting $5,000 into his song “Cowboys” based on the initial sketch recording Bill Watson made of the tune.  As the full blown production progressed he was able to interest an investor to put up an additional $100,000, presumably for promotion and distribution.

A master suitable for radio airplay typically lands at about $2,500 but could be much lower or higher depending on the same factors detailed above for demos.

While a demo might have one of our A Team musicians on it, a master has only our A Team musicians. Your master may also have a more intricate arrangement; doubling and stacking of tracks (the musician physically playing a part multiple times to thicken the part) as well as a more detailed mix requiring up to 10 hours of mix time.

You’d do a master if you are making an album for release and intend to get radio airplay.

Nashville Trax is a music production facility, we do not go beyond that role; however,  we have witnessed the previous successes of our clients over the years and once your demo or master is produced we have a network of companies who can handle your next step effectively.

That list includes music publishing companies; song pluggers; music promotion companies, concert promoters; distributors who can obtain major label distribution for your album or single; and yes, we can connect you with the same radio promotion team that obtained radio airplay for our client Dan Thompson.

Read more about Dan Thomson’s album and single releases this article opened with:

Dan Thompson’s “Miles And Miles” Makes The Country Radio Most Added Prime Mover Chart!

Songwriter Dan Thompson Visits Nashville To Record Vocal Tracks For His CD Album, 1st single getting radio adds daily, 23 stations yesterday!

Dan Thompson Single “A Day Without Progress” Produced by Nashville Trax, Distributed By Sony… 28 Weeks on Sirius XM. Give A Listen!

Miles and Miles by Dan Thompson Gaining Traction On Radio, including on the BBC!

 

 


Demo or Master?

Should you have a demo made of your latest song or a master? That is should you use a service such as Play It Again Demos or should you use a studio such as Nashville Trax?

Do a demo if:

  • You intend to pitch the song to a song publisher for possible addition to their song catalog
  • You intend to pitch the song to an artist
  • It’s for personal use, your budget is limited and the intention is playing it for, or give away copies to, family and friends

    Do a master if:

  • You are the artist and this is your showcase
  • You are a singer or musician and this is your promotion tool intended to show your professionalism
  • You intend to sell the song to the public

    Note that in 2012 AFM Local 257 here in Nashville approved the Demo to Limited Pressing Conversion Agreement which permits an upgrade from demo to master that gives credit for payments already made. Previously it was illegal to sell a demo.