Getting on Spotify

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Alec Taylor
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Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Fri Jan 29, 2016 4:22 pm

So does anyone here (mainly directing this at Silver, since he mentioned it once) know the best service for getting music out on Spotify? I've been doing some research, and most services either require a decent upfront cost (except RouteNote, which makes me suspicious), or have a handful of reviews that basically say "DON'T DO IT STOP NOOOO" amongst a handful of yes men. I'm looking at taking all of the songs I've been making and remastering since last October and putting together a little compilation album on Spotify so my family will finally respect me and accept that I mean business, but just don't want to get fornicated in the rear.
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by The Silver Lining » Fri Jan 29, 2016 11:37 pm

CDBaby is a fairly good service for this from what I heard. They do ask money, but it's not too much.
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Alec Taylor
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Sat Jan 30, 2016 2:37 am

Righteous. I'll probably try it out in the near future, right now I'm taking a nice long break from music recording. I've had a lot on my mind for a while now, and just need some time to let what I have made breathe on its own.
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Artisan » Sat Jan 30, 2016 3:14 am

I'll report back...

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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by The Silver Lining » Mon Feb 01, 2016 10:34 am

If only I knew some people who can do mastering, I think I could get my music on spotify within a month. :|
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Artisan » Mon Feb 01, 2016 4:34 pm

I can kind of do mastering. No idea how to do it professionally, thoigh I can take a finished track and put the final touches on it. Unless you're looking for it to be louder than the apocalypse :P in which case I can't help you

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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Mon Feb 01, 2016 6:09 pm

Some services, like RouteNote, offer mastering as part of their publishing deal. It just costs a pretty penny on top of the publishing fees, and I don't really know what their output quality is like either. I think CD Baby can do that too, but don't quote me on that (looking at you, Artisan :p )
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Artisan » Mon Feb 01, 2016 7:18 pm

Run server command: 'quote/user:SunShade'

Don't meant to sound elitist or audiophilic or anything, but be real leery of anyone offering to master your stuff if you don't know what it sounds like - me included. There can't be any dichotomy between what you want and what they do. If you hand it off to someone, who knows how badly they'll compress and distort it. My idea of mastering is basically "manually adjust peaks without causing clipping, then place highest peak at -1.0 DB", so it remains relatively consistent while retaining 99.9% of dynamic range, yet still never peaks. I have never studied mastering at all and I'm still not entirely sure I know what it is. All I know is that I've had enough of squished music for a lifetime and someone needs to kick Rick Rubin in his jaw for thinking that LOUDER IS ALWAYS BETTER.

Of course if you're going for a sound to be enjoyed in, I dunno, a steel mill or on an oil rig or something, yeah, you might want to squish the sound a bit. "I have a complaint to file about your music. I work in a pressing factory and when your song goes to that quiet bit I can't hear it that well. I'm suing you for every penny you've got."

A huge deal of mastering is about compression and I'm sick of overusing it. Compression is like salt. A little bit can enhance the music, but too much renders it repulsive. BUT THEN IT WON'T BE AS LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUD

I could rant about hypercompression for a long time and I doubt anybody would care to read it. So if you make any effort at mastering, well, look into what you really want.

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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by The Silver Lining » Tue Feb 02, 2016 7:15 am

Isn't mastering about using equalizers as well?

Anyway, if you feel like doing some mastering some time, I'd love to send a song or two your way so you can check it out. I'd appreciate it a lot. :)
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Tue Feb 02, 2016 1:50 pm

Today I learned that my songs are diet songs because I don't use any sa- ...er, compression when I master them in my own crap way. But I also don't amplify the ever living ass out of them, so I guess I'm on the right track.
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Artisan » Tue Feb 02, 2016 3:17 pm

The Silver Lining wrote:Isn't mastering about using equalizers as well?

Anyway, if you feel like doing some mastering some time, I'd love to send a song or two your way so you can check it out. I'd appreciate it a lot. :)
EQ can be abused as well. Sometimes you'll want a little bit, if there's a really screechy trebley bit or maybe the low end just isn't pronounced enough. You may see "smiley face EQ" referred to, which means boosting the bass and the treble and lowering the mid range (thus, smiley face). This contradicts the Fletcher-Munson curve, where people hear mid range frequencies better at lower volumes, and both low and high range better at higher volumes. It effectively makes it sound better at one volume level, but 9 times out of 10 they then push the gain up so bloody high that it passes that volume limit and it sounds simultaneously more shrill and rumbly than it has any reason to.
SunShade wrote:Today I learned that my songs are diet songs because I don't use any sa- ...er, compression when I master them in my own crap way. But I also don't amplify the ever living ass out of them, so I guess I'm on the right track.
Some foods are better off without salt. What compression in small doses does is even out the songs. If you set it up a certain way, it will even out the levels of songs - so if your songs are all different volumes, probably by accident but for any reason, applying a compression pattern to them will even them out and they'll all be the same volume, and the compression will barely be noticeable. Compression can also relatively painlessly remove sudden volume spikes and even out the signal (by pulling the spike down toward the average peak, and thus you can amplify it if you want to).

What record executives think people enjoy is when all of the songs are compressed so that there are no peaks or troughs, and then amplified usually past the clipping point. I am not an audiophile by any stretch of the imagination - my entire music library is 128kbps MP3s, which is equivalent to having an "antique car collection" that consists of partially cubed cars rescued from junkyards, but like the idiot that collected them, I don't care because I literally cannot hear a difference - but this thing just annoys the hell out of me. I have to use the analogy again - it's like when a chef offers to add salt to your food and just takes the cap off and dumps the whole thing onto it. With compression, you can always add, but you can never remove. Apparently people are starting a petition for media players with compression knobs, so people can adjust how much compression they want, in the hopes that executives would focus more on the sound than its internal volume. I don't know why anybody would turn that knob above zero, but I don't think that's the point.

Rather than reading me bitch about it, watch this 2-minute video that explains it better than I could. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Gmex_4hreQ

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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Tue Feb 02, 2016 3:24 pm

I'm learning so much more about music production than I ever knew in this thread. My main methods before were always:
-Make sure each track ends the correct way (because MIDI tracks are stupid)
-Give each track a tiny bit of reverb (because MIDI tracks are lifeless)
-Make sure each instrument is at a reasonable volume (because MIDI piano is whisper and MIDI organ is pig castration)
-Don't give it full amplification (because I want people to survive the listening experience)


Pretty much why I'm giving up MIDI to learn new software and techniques, more or less.
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Artisan » Tue Feb 02, 2016 3:37 pm

I know I come off as an idiot in every other discussion, so I think it's fitting that my one hope at redeeming myself is a topic in which only two other people will ever read :lol:

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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Fri Oct 26, 2018 7:35 pm

An interesting development on Spotify...


They've introduced artist accounts now, meaning people can freely upload their music to Spotify without going through another distribution service like TuneCore or CD Baby. The only catch is that you have to fork over your bank account and tax ID so that they know how to treat you like music is your job or whatever. Good news is that it at least will help vet out kids and shit that just want to post shitty Minecraft parodies on Spotify to show off to their friends, but the bad news is that there's going to be a lot more low-effort and amateur music (like me!) going onto a platform that has more or less had pretty good quality control.

I'll stick with YouTube (can't get copystrikes if you make your own shit) and Bandcamp (where you're 100% in control).
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by The Silver Lining » Sun Oct 28, 2018 8:29 pm

For what it's worth: I'm on Spotify, and despite the low amount of complete crap content, there's still nobody listening to my music. :D

I think this new development is nice. I'll have to check how to get into it, and if I want to get into it.
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Re: Getting on Spotify

Post by Alec Taylor » Wed Oct 31, 2018 3:09 pm

I think it's a perfectly fine route for the singles/album type of artists (a.k.a. 99% of musicians), with the only bummer so far honestly just being the royalties. I've read and heard that if you can get a song featured in one of Spotify's playlists, your exposure goes through the roof. I could believe it honestly, one of the platform's greatest strengths are the playlists put together by the site. I just know personally for people like me that work with material more analogous to 'extended-plays' and love to constantly revise material from month to month, that sort of thing just doesn't work for me. Platforms like YouTube and Bandcamp are more flexible for that kind of work.
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