A well written press release is the first step in getting some attention for your new album. Use this template to help you organize your information. Note that this template was written with bands and indie labels in mind as the writers and the media in mind as the readers. PR folks and radio pluggers will want to take a slightly different approach with their press releases, and one sheets for distributors and stores should also be slightly different.
The Header: Centered at the top of your page should be the band's name and the album name. To make sure this information draws attention, make sure you use a larger text size than the rest of your release, and also use bold and/or italics. You can also set this information apart by putting it in a box. If the album is on a label, include the label name and/or catalog number here as well.
A few optional inclusions for the header are:
- A scanned photo of the album cover
- Contact information for the person handling press for the release in the band or at the label (labels should especially consider having their label logo somewhere along the top of the page - ideally in the top right or left hand corner).
- A quote from a good review of the band.
- The band and/or label's website/MySpace page
Paragraph One: This is where you want to announce the new album. Go for a strong lead sentence, and if this is a follow-up album, make reference to previous work by the band that the reader may know about. If this is a debut album, say so, and give a few clues about the sounds of the album. This is also the place to mention any "big ticket" selling points for the album or band, such as:
- Praise from well known artist, producer, DJ, etc
- A well known guest star on the album
- A song that has received a lot of radio play
- The album was recorded in a well known studio or with a well known producer
Paragraph Two: In this paragraph, briefly expand a little bit about the band and the music on the album. This paragraph is very important for a new band with a debut album. Don't mistake this for a band bio - which should be separate - but include some info about where the band comes from, influences, and again, any "big ticket" selling points. Keep this paragraph brief.
Paragraph Three: This paragraph is for giving your reader clear reasons why they should write about your band and review your album (and just saying because it's a great album won't cut it). Use this paragraph to mention things like:
- Tour dates planned in support of the new album (or, if your shows aren't confirmed, but you do plan to tour, something like "shows planned for June 2007" will do).
- Reviews that you know are forthcoming in well known publications/on respected websites
- Any radio play the album has received (or that you know it will be receiving)
The Closing: At the bottom of your press release should be the contact info for the person fielding press queries for the album, even if this information is also at the top of your page. Set this information apart from the body of your press release in the same manner as you did the header - again, a box around the text works great, as does a larger type size or bolding/italicizing the text. Be sure to make clear what this information is for by saying "for more information, promo requests or to set up an interview, please contact (so and so)." Also include the band and/or label's website/MySpace page here.