ARTISTS: READ CAREFULLY

Here are a few questions which may help you to consider how you’re managing your career.

Self-examination, adjustment and focus are the keys to success!

  1. What 3 songs are you comfortable promoting for the next six months?
  2. What social media networks do you use regularly? Which ones are you signed up for but don’t use?
  3. What is your promotional strategy for the next six months?
  4. Do you have a logo?
  5. Do you have a promotion/marketing budget?
  6. Does your strategy include; e-mail blasts, shows, flyers, t-shirts, interviews, and video production or just word-of-mouth promotion on social networking sites?
  7. How many people, including managers and friends, do you have who will actively promote your music?

We can help you adjust the answers to some of these questions in a constructive way. We would like to build with you.

Right now, you most likely need to build a bigger following and continue making money to support your current and future projects. There are several ways to do this. We offer help with 4 ways.

1. Create an EPK,  to promote your music.

2. Get your music placed in advertisements, film or television.

3. Make money doing advertising and promotion for other people.

4. Develop a promotional strategy to connect with your target audience.

Number 4 was in part, already mentioned above, but first, let’s start with an EPK.

What is an EPK?

An EPK is an Electronic Press Kit. This is a media kit designed to promote you as an artist. In the past, these kits were always physical, consisting of a printed bio/resume, CD/DVD material and separate headshot photographs. These packages have become digital, for the most part, over the past 10 years. Now, we have taken that concept to the next level.

Target Media Group has redesigned the concept of a digital press kit and merged it with the promotion of your next project. We have gotten rid of the boundaries between corporate resumes and public resumes.

This design outlook will present your catalog, latest project or maxi-single as a fully-functional promotional tool.

Any music and video will be viewable in the kit along with pictures and text. The content is restricted from unauthorized downloads to ensure your ability to monetize it later. However, if you like, links to download sites can be inserted.

The way we style your press kit will materialize the concept of your promotional campaign.

We will help visualize your concept with pictures and describe it with text while promoting your strongest traits. Our years of providing print promotion for the entertainment industry combined with our experience at the epicenter of Hip Hop Kulture give us specific qualifications to assist you.

Greetings,kurt nice and krsoneMy name is Kurt Nice, founder of Shades of Hip Hop video mixtapes (1996).

Hip Hop Kulture means a lot to me.

I have been living a Hiphop lifestyle for over thirty years. When I was a youth, there was a time when there was no such thing as hip-hop music or Hip Hop as a culture or anything most people would recognize as a Hiphop consciousness. I grew up with Hip Hop. I was among its first generation of converts. Nowadays, most people who would call themselves Hip Hop don’t remember those times. Most of the people, who would consider themselves Hiphop conscious today, were born after 1980. Alot of you grew up in a World already filled with Hip Hop cultural images, slang, fashion and music.

Most of the Hiphoppas born before 1980, have moved on to a more mainstream lifestyle, where they wouldn’t consider themselves predominantly Hip Hop anymore. So, the die-hard, old school Hiphoppas, like myself, don’t have as loud of a voice or platform usually. We’re too busy paying bills or raising kids and what not. However, there are still hardcore Hiphoppas in the music industry to one degree or another. But their voice is drowned out by Worldstarhiphop and the endless droning on of low-skilled, ignorant monotony, blasted over the radio 24/7 with a hot beat under it. Comparatively, the noise we make, spreading the truth about real hip-hop inspired music from today and yesterday, reaches only so many. It’s not enough to push back against all the mainstream, pop-rappin bullshit.

We see good artists drown every day in this same, aimless sea of whackness.

So many good artists I’ve heard will eventually retire to a regular job somewhere, not really doing much music anymore. It’s not that they aren’t dope emcees or great producers either. It’s just that most don’t have the right combination of; quality, marketing strategy, support, luck and timing to ever get where they are aiming for. Instead, they eventually end up doing something else. Still, I have been in a unique position to have worked with new artists over a long period of time or with artists who have had long careers in the business. Working from behind the scenes, for artist from Kool Herc, Afrika Bambaataa, and KRSONE to Sean Price, Lady Luck and Immortal Technique,

I have seen progression and also witnessed what longevity looks like from up close.

Many emerging artists today, think they want a career and lifestyle like Lil Wayne or Rick Ross, not knowing they would possibly be more satisfied with a career like Big Daddy Kane or KRSONE. It might not seem as flamboyant or glamorous, but at one time it was every rappers dream to live like Kane or KRS are living right now. Most thought they would have a long career of doing shows and living off their craft. Instead, many of the rappers from their era have regular jobs now too and don’t perform anymore at all. A lot of rappers with the quality production and skill, lack the marketing strategy to keep their name visible during promotional periods or the supportive structure to keep the project going during production periods. And no one can predict luck.

You just have to be doing it long enough to meet luck when it happens.

That’s where timing comes in, and in era like the past few years, skill or quality doesn’t have anything to do with success. It is quality artists who actually suffer the most in a time like this. This is an era that doesn’t reward skill or quality like it does for the opposite.

The aide we provide to artists is practical consultation and promotional support.

We can’t provide artists with luck or change the times we live in. We can only do what we do, to help Hip Hop get stronger by supporting the ones who have a chance to positively advance hip-hop music and Hip Hop Kulture in the meantime. The music and artists we choose to support are ones who don’t denigrate the genre of rap with nonsense over dope instrumentals. That is counter-productive. Those kind of non-rappers are a dime a dozen, 99% of which will never even be as successful as weak rappers like Soulja-Boy or Lil B. So what’s the point?

The point is this. If you want the assistance and support of a dedicated Hiphoppa to refine your marketing strategy, help develop your promotion or give you ways to showcase your talent, you’ve come to the right place. If you want to know about services and techniques to sharpen your presentation, again we can help. Our publication, HipHopLives.net Digital Magazine, formerly 9 Elements (DM), is a conduit through which we provide artists a platform to present their best skill and creativity. Periodically, we produce a mixtape compilation in the form of a digital magazine to showcase artists who have the creativity to keep Hip Hop alive and original.  As one of our selected artists, you will have the opportunity to place your material amongst those of comparable skill, concept and/or originality. We simply ask that you support other Hiphoppas in any way you can. In many personal talks with the Teacha, KRSONE, he stressed the point that to preserve Hip Hop we must preserve the Hiphoppa. This is what I believe and hope you feel the same way.

Peace and Blessings,

Kurt Nice

What can we do for you?

We can design a promotional package (EPK) that will help you promote:

  1. A single
  2. An album
  3. A catalog
  4. An independent tour
  5. An event
  6. A movie/video project

The package will include pictures, audio, video and reviews where applicable. We will consult with you on various options for the campaign. After deciding on the marketing concept we will format a multi-page magazine template to place the appropriate links. Once edited and finalized, the magazine will be made available for you to email and post as html code on your website or blog.

Single Promotion

A single promotion, Is considered to be a basic 4 -8 page promotion of up to 2 songs. The song title, concept, liner notes and video will be the main focus of the promotion. Including a remix or b-side in the promotion is also an option. Promotional magazines of 4 pages can be formatted and designed for approximately $100 depending on the number of pictures and links. Written reviews and editorials will be additional.

All other packages vary depending on the number of pages and links. To schedule your package for formatting, consultation and design,

CONTACT US: info@hiphoplives.net RE: EPK. Also indicate the amount you want to spend for this project (your budget).
Design will take minimum 1 week. Completed projects will be available in printable PDF format, html and url link.

We can also link you to opportunities to place your music with film, television and product promotion.

This is a broadening market for independent artists to get paid for licensing their work as background for other promotional products. Video games, local businesses and others are looking for music created for their products as well. We provide coaching and leads to generating this brand new independent artist revenue stream, to help fund your music career.

Sources like Sonicbids can link you with gigs or places like HipHopLives.net, while sources like MusicClout can link you licensing opportunities.  Don’t limit your options. You already have time invested in your artistic endeavors. You’re already an entrepreneur. Now you just have to find a way to become more successful.

Another way artists can put their craft to use is by becoming advertisers. Right now, as an artist, you are a promoter of your music. You are, in effect, an advertiser of your own brand. Over time you will learn more effective techniques to promote yourself too. But as you learn techniques to aide your personal projects, you can also aide others with what you already know.  You can do this in several ways. The most obvious is to host showcase events and open-mics.

1. You learn other techniques to M.C. – move the crowd

As you get better on reading crowds and maintaining or amplifying the energy level of the audience, you will learn better techniques to approach your personal projects.

2. You meet more people

While you move through different circles hosting you can develop new ties, network, find more opportunities and create better collaborations.

3. Polish your act

Brush up on your mic control skills. Dealing with less than ideal conditions makes you prepared for any situation.

Become a product promoter

Aside from the entertainment scene there are others who could benefit from your talent. They are people with products. Music and entertainment is used to catch people’s attention and instill particular moods to enhance a brands appeal. Sometimes you can use that to your benefit. Below you can listen to the interview I did with DJ Dave about how he used his skill to get a commercial deal with Hyundai.

Kurt Nice

Kurt Nice aka Kurtiss Jackson is a behind the scenes pioneer in the Hip Hop Kulture, creating the first nationally distributed video mix tape series, Shades of Hip Hop, in the late 1990s. Since touring the country with the Stop the Violence Movement and the Temple of Hip Hop as KRS-ONE’s National Marketing Director, Kurt Nice has been a constant commentator on conscious Hip Hop and its relevance to the new rap music of today, through radio and cable appearances. contact Kurt at info@hiphoplives.net

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One thought on “ARTISTS: READ CAREFULLY”

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