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The Indie Band Survival Guide: The Complete Manual for the Do-It-Yourself Musician Paperback – August 5, 2008

4.2 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this indispensable guide for indie musicians, Chertkow and Feehan, lead members of the Chicago band Beatnik Turtle, explain how they have managed successfully to get their music out to the public, to produce four albums, to build a huge following and to write music for television shows and theater without the benefit of a record label. Covering topics such as building a brand, networking, Web site, getting booked, playing live and getting publicized, Chertkow and Feehan pass along advice that, while sometimes self-evident, encourages bands to exploit the Internet and to become Web savvy to make a name for themselves. For example, in illustrative detail they spell out clearly the terms of contracts such as nonexclusive that can often be so fuzzy. In their section on getting booked, they remind bands that the essence of a good show is remembering that the band is there for the audience, and the authors explain step-by-step the ups and downs of dealing with bookers, scheduling and booking kits. Because this lively book offers such essential guidance in these changing times, no band should be without a copy. (Aug.) ""
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved."

Review

“Indispensable ... This lively book offers such essential guidance in these changing times, no band should be without a copy.” ―Publishers Weekly

“The Internet is an extraordinary opportunity for musicians to make and profit from their music. This clearly written and comprehensive book shows exactly how. A perfect balance between the mess of the law and the promise of the technology, it should be read by anyone who wants to take their talent and share it--for the love of sharing, or for the profit.” ―Lawrence Lessig, author of Code, professor at Stanford Law School, founder of the Center for the Internet and Society, and CEO of the Creative Commons project

“Finally! A comprehensive and practical guide for musicians that explains how to navigate today's music world without a label. A must-read!” ―Derek Sivers, founder of CD Baby and HostBaby

“If they gave out Grammys for music career books, Randy and Jason should surely win one. Their Indie Band Survival Guide is a must-read resource for any musician wanting to take the independent path to success--which, these days, is the only way to go. Networking, branding, Internet promotion, live gigs, distribution, publicity ... they cover it all. Highly recommended!” ―Bob Baker, author of Guerrilla Music Marketing Handbook and founder of TheBuzzFactor.com

“A fabulous & comprehensive 101 guide for any musician trying to make it in the crazy 'new' Music Business.” ―Ariel Hyatt, founder of Ariel Publicity & Cyber PR

“A practical, down-to-earth guide for bands working in the real world.” ―Brian Austin Whitney, founder of the Just Plain Folks musician network

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; First Edition edition (August 5, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312377681
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312377687
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,296,291 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rene I. Ferrer on September 18, 2008
Format: Paperback
The book does exactly what the author set out to accomplish. It is a compilation of knowledge and useful tips, usually spread out all over the internet, for all us small bands trying to take the next steps to a more professional level.

Everything is presented in a logical order and progresses from band promotion, gigs, experience and then into recording, production and music distribution, from CD (yuck) to digital
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I bought this book to aid in helping me get my band up and running. I was pleasantly surprised at the thoroughness of the topics and the author's insights on each. Real world experience pays dividends and the author really makes his case. I give this book 5 stars for content and delivery. My only gripe is the lack of an index. I am using highlighters and Post-It notes and have kind of created my own. Easily a third of the book deals with internet topics and should be very helpful to those musicians who are not web designers. And while this book provides a comprehensive look at the world of indie band business and details what you need to consider, it does not provide the legal underpinnings of that business. I would strongly recommend 2 other books to complement this one. The first is "Music Law" by Richard Stim, an indispensable legal guide that explains copyrights and many other legal issues surrounding the music business. The second is "All You Need to Know About the Music Business" by Donald Passman. This book details just about every way a musician can get screwed by the music industry and how to avoid or at least deal with it. All three books complement each other beautifully. Highly recommended!
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By EthosInFreefall on October 21, 2014
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Okay I suppose if you want to do what everyone else does and 'brand' yourself. I've had this a while now and never really did too much of what it said because I found the advice too repulsive. There are probably newer books that are more up to date by now. Contains the basic categories of what one needs to attend to.
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Would have like to have seen more detail under "Getting the gig".... what is the protocol that typically works for most bands that try to books themselves. Because after all, this is probably the most important section in the book. How to approach different types of venues, how to negotiate price, etc. Otherwise, this is an excellent read on the business side of the independent artist/band.
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I just got started as soon as I received it in the mail. In the music world today a lot has changed. New things are happening and old things are becoming obsolete. The information contained has brought me up to date with the music business. It is a highly informative book for musicians. I'm glad I invested in this publication.
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AWESOME book! I mean, it's not a career maker, it's not "super crazy top secrets of success", but it is enlightening and teaches a lot about thinking outside the box and making decisions NOW for what's best for your career, rather than having a mind-frame that encourages to be dependent upon someone or something else for your success.
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Ordered this along with a more intensive book on booking and performing, and was expecting this one to be a flop. Actually, the other ended up being more of an encyclopedia, useful but dry, and this one I found mind-blowingly accessible from beginning to end. I'm a working musician, and I recommend this item as a pretty straight-forward, lively, and informative book on engaging the business of being an independent musician in theory in practice.
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I've read tons of music business books over the years and this one put a new spin on it for me. The Indie Band Survival Guide is the go-to Guide for the basics and beyond. It's written in a way that even a beginner can understand and packed FULL of information that even seasoned musicians will find interesting. New perspectives from authors that understand indie music and the indie way of life! In addition to this book, I recommend reading Tour:Smart by Martin Atkins. The 2 book combined will most certainly give you the advantage over everyone else!

WAY TO GO INDIE BAND SURVIVAL GUIDE!
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