A music industry showcase gig could be your big break, but to make it to the stage, you've got to make it through the application process. Find out how to put together a winning music convention showcase application.
Do Your Homework!:
Many music industry showcase applications are trash can bound right out of the gate. Why? Because the applicant didn't follow the directions. It sounds simple, the first thing on your to-do list is to find out the right away to apply for your chosen convention/trade show. This means making sure you know:
- Closing date for applications (if you live in a different country than where the convention is taking place, pay close attention - your cut off date is likely to be earlier.)
- Format for music submissions
- Format for application submissions (via their site, Sonicbids, etc)
Choose Your Music Wisely:
You are likely to be quite limited in how much music your can submit with your showcase gig application. For this reason, it is crucial you put your best foot forward. Much like putting together a demo, putting your best foot forward in this case means not only picking songs you're proud of but also choosing songs that grab the listener instantly. Sure, maybe if the judges had weeks to sit with your album, one of the "growers" would become their favorite, but you have a very short amount of time to make an impression in this case. Use it wisely and go for the one with the hook.
Make Your Case:
Again, the nature of the showcase application process may limit your ability to make your pitch, but use whatever opportunity you have to include supporting information with your music to your maximum benefit. This means having a great promo pack, band bio and set of press clippings and then using them according to the application directions. Also, make sure your website/MySpace/Twitter is looking spiffy while you're letting the judges make their decisions - you can bet they'll be stopping by to check things out, so this is another chance to present info you didn't get to include with the app itself.
Understand What The Judges Want:
When you're applying to a music industry trade show, it helps to understand what the judges want. Although different music industry conventions will want different things in terms of genre, generally speaking, every convention focuses on picking musicians for showcases are who are "ready" to take advantage of the opportunity. This often means musicians with an album/single/EP to promote and who have a little bit of buzz going on. When you're putting together your application, play up these points.
Don't Miss the Deadline!:
Don't do it. They're not going to extend it for you (or the thousands of others like you who didn't quite get it together in time). Normally you have MONTHS to get your application together. Go on, do it on time.
Learn More About Music Trade Shows and Conventions: