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[LABEL] #10 – Back On Track – Decide On Distributor

Quick update on where I am with the label setup. I had got to a point where I couldn’t go any further until I had finished the music and the artwork. I have finished this all now, so I have my product in my hand ready to market and send out there. So I’m officially back on track and ready to smash this out now!

I have been working on finding the right distributor for my label and have settled on Label Worx. They have been recommended to me by a few of my friends who have worked with them.

Here are a few questions I had about distributors:

Q1 – Do I have to sell myself to the Distributor?

The short answer is Yes. Do this by creating a good professional product. Decent music, mastered professionally and good artwork. Done.

Q2 – How do I know which Distributor is right for me?

Look online to see which Retailers are selling the type of music I want to sell, then check out which Distributors supply those Retailers.

Q3 – Do I need a following already to sell myself to the Distributor?

Surely not? If the answer would be ‘Yes’, then how do you get people to follow something where there is no product released yet? They would be liking nothing!? That doesn’t make sense? I’ll find out the real answer when I contact Label Worx tomorrow. (Answer in next post).

Next week, I will be speaking to my graphic designer and working with him to vector out my geometric artwork, which will be used for releases, logo’s T-shirts etc… Push on!


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[HOS] #2 – Sparse (Sketch Mix)

This is a video recording of the live composition performance for the track ‘sparse’.

It’s from a forthcoming 9 track album – For The Love Of Wellington, which I wrote in Wellington, NZ back in late 2015/early 2016.

This is a rough mix at this stage, and I’ve kept in the mistakes as this is just still at the compositional phase. I had originally intended to get musicians I had met there to collaborate by laying down their parts over the top of this. I’m undecided at this point whether I’m still going to do this, but for now, I just want to show them as they are.

These tracks were also made as part of a music production course I did with Mike Monday called ‘Make Unique Music’. This track incorporates ideas of metaphor and producing at your current skill level. More detailed write-ups about this to follow.

Enjoy!

This will be free release as usual, but unfortunately I can’t give any download links to this yet. Watch this space!


www.soundcloud.com/houseofstrings

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[LABEL] #9 – Catchup

catchup

Ok so I am just knocking off a few things from my tick list created earlier in this series.

1 – Decide on the name

I have decided on ‘Fraktion Music’. Although I will, in most cases be just advertising it as ‘Fraktion’. T-shirt printed will not state the word ‘music’, unless it’s in a URL located somewhere away from the main logo.

2 – Register the name at companies house

Well as I have my existing Ltd. business, this procedure is pretty easy. I have spoken to my accountant and he says I need to create a meeting with my secretary, make a vote for it and show this as evidence it’s all good to move forward and do this… or something to that effect anyway. This will be shown to companies house and they will change it over from ‘Fat Kat Music Ltd.’ to ‘Fraktion Music Ltd.’. I don’t think this will cost me anything. I’ll document this further on when it happens.

3 – Decide on image/artwork/branding

Image: I have made a solid decision and committed to the ‘image’ of the label, which now resembles something a lot more technological.

Artwork: I am doing all the artwork now so I am in control of what happens and when with this, which is great. Plus it will save me loads of money. Awesome. I may want to learn how to vector out my images to translate them to digital format as I still have to have a graphic designer to do this for me at the moment.

Branding: To put it simply, I realise this is something that I will be constantly working on throughout the life of the business. So I’ll just be documenting this as I go. I googled ‘how to create a brand’ and found this website, which looked good for me: www.marketingdonut.co.uk

My mum and one of my sisters told me to look at this next website:  Carina Gordon-Barnes’ website: www.youinspireme.co.uk

I’ll look at these more in depth… laterrrr

4 – Decide on track for the first EP release and think about the direction of the labels ‘sound’

Tracks: I’ve got 6 EP’s now, I just need to mix them down before each release. All the composition is done, except the last 2 EP’s, which need extra work.

I have streamlined my mix-down procedure over the last 2 years and can seem to roll off a mix-down in 4 hours. Although this might be possible, in reality it still takes a week to send it over to the mastering engineer, get it back, listen to it, walk away from it, come back to it, re-adjust and repeat (if required) and commit. My mastering engineer is awesome and real quick too.

Check out Colin @ OOOD Mastering

The ‘sound’ of the label: Well… although I have these releases put together, I’m still aware that I may completely change my mind about releasing the others as there is a vast range of ‘sounds’ going on for each EP. I may decide there is too much disparity and choose to just create something fresh each time and really hone-in the ‘sound’ of the label. Maybe then I’ll send the other EP’s to other labels. I’m open minded about this and not overly fussed, just as long as they get out there somehow, even if I just throw them out there for free.

5 – Create all the online platforms

I have sparked up accounts for YouTube (G-Mail), SoundCloud, Twitter and Facebook so far. I’ll post these links later when they are live and kicking.

6: Create a solid marketing plan

I’m working on this now…. Mmmmmmm fun fun!


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[ARTWORK] #17 – House Of Strings Logo

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Fig.1. Finished Logo Artwork for House Of Strings

This shot was taken by me on the floor of my house in Auzzie. The picture was drawn by my friend Taya on a piece of scrap paper.

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Fig.2. Early Rough Sketch Ideas

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Fig.3. More Early Ideas

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Fig.4. My Final Sketched Idea

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Fig.5. Taya’s Logo

So the short story is… I had spent most of the day coming up with- and developing ideas for the logo in Fig.2, 3 and 4. After my friend Taya got home, she tried helping me out and did one herself, which took a whole 30 seconds… I loved it straight away and went with that instead of mine. Hahahaa!

Couldn’t believe it, I spent all day grinding away at something and Taya comes in and smashes out something way much better in under a minute. Literally. Unbelievable scenes.


Like

I like Taya’s logo. It’s brilliant, simples. She connected the ‘S’ of ‘house’ and ‘strings’… mental. and put the ‘of’ as the dot on the ‘i’. Genius.

Don’t Like

My one. Complete rubbish. This is bin fodder. Just looks like I’m trying too hard and failing, which was incidentally just exactly was what was occurring. Great.

Learned

I hate curves. I can’t draw curves. I don’t want to. I hate them. I tried to draw them in my sketch with the word ‘strings’ and that flippin ‘f’ in the word ‘of’ and they all looked like dog matter. Trying to do that just re-confirmed my hatred for curves in anything I draw. They’re just too untidy and I don’t understand them. They just seem to ruin and picture I try and draw. Baaaa if I’m going to draw a curve, it’s going to consist of lots of straight lines that end up looking like a curve. Like this:

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Fig.6. London Kings Cross 

Thats better, much more tidy.

Funny thing is although I hate drawing curves and I don’t like them most of the time in any case, I really love what Taya did with her sketch. Spot on 🙂 Thanks Tay!


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[ARTWORK] #16 – Fraktion Logo

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Fig.1. Finished Logo

This is the logo I designed for my Techno/House Record Label – Fraktion Music

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Fig.2. First Sketch / Idea

This is the first sketch I threw down (on the back of a bank statement) when the idea for the image came to me, whilst sitting having my morning coffee bacon and eggs at a cafe in Brisbane. It’s funny how the final image is pretty damn close to my first idea here… not too shabby. The idea was to have something connecting all the way round the outside creating a border… and have it spilt in the middle somehow (like a fraction…).

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Fig.3. Developing Ideas

Here are some more images of early ideas. You can see here how I had started to think more about imposing mathematical imagery on the ‘O’ by striking a line through it so it looks like a zero. So we got a division, and a number incorporated in the image now.

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Fig.4. More Developing Ideas

Here I have now thought more about the use of mathematics and the ‘K’ and the ‘A’ are now similar to ‘less than’ and ‘upper case delta’ symbols. The line on top of the ‘T’… I don’t know what I was thinking here to be honest… looks alright though eh. I could say I did it with the intention of making it look like an equals sign… Lolz. Thats an obvious lie, but it does though! Had the old subconscious working on that one for me. Result

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Fig.5. Alternate version 1

This is a final sketch, which I thought was the one, except after thinking about if and getting feedback, I decided to change the ‘R’ as me and my mates thought it looked like a ‘K’.

 

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Fig.6. Designing the ‘R’

Here you can see the working out and variations I drew for designing the ‘R’.

6-alt-processing-1Fig.7. Final Sketch

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Fig.8. Final Processed Sketch – Variation

I’ll have this one vectored out soon for printing posters, T-shirts, frilly knickers etc…


Like

I like this a lot and I’m super happy with it. I feel I managed to incorporate enough ‘technological / mathematical’ imagery into the logo. It’s solid, simple and legible. (well legible enough anyway)

Don’t Like

You can see the pencil sketch lines which I haven’t rubbed out in the last two pictures. I don’t like that effect here. I think it looks better with it rubbed out.

Learned

I learned that I can scrub out some little blemishes and imperfections in iPhoto. I did this with a couple of tiny tiny tiiiiny scuffs that were annoying me, which worked really well. I won’t usually do this though, unless it’s for a super duper (must be shiny!) sort of picture


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Icon links to Kat’s media platforms located to the right hand side of the website

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