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Best Indie Music Web Resources of 2008

Posted in A Day in the Life, DIY Diva, Future Legends, The Great Give Back 2008 | 7 Comments »

It has been a great year musically, but I’ve decided to skip a “Best of 2008 Music” list in favor of listing my personal list of “Best Indie Music Web Resources of 2008”. And as I’ve designated December 2008 for “The Great Give Back 2008”, I’m not limiting my list to a measly 10 either. All of the below sites have been a source of great information and/or inspiration for me this year, and I’m grateful to have found them online.

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Rock Star Life Lessons’ “Best Indie Music Web Resources of 2008”

by Carla Lynne Hall Music Careers
Heather McDonald’s Music Careers site covers the music industry topics that musicians need, from being a musician, contracts and publishing, industry careers and more. Heather is a music industry veteran, having tons of experience in indie labels, marketing and publicity. I’ll be featuring an interview with her later this month, and you’ll see why top-rated has her running the Music Careers site.

Ariel Publicity’s Cyber PR Service
Ariel Hyatt and her team gets reviews and placements for her clients (Yes, I’m one of them!) on podcasts and internet radio, and is an amazing resource. Whether your musical style is rock, pop, or urban, check out the link to watch a demo video for her Cyber PR Service. If you’re more of the DIY type, then get her eBook Music Success in 9 Weeks, in which she shares her tips and secrets for building a buzz for your band. With the purchase of her eBook, you also get to join her private Cyber PR Mastermind forum for free. Since I happen to also be the forum manager, you’ll have TWO coaches, plus a supportive community of musicians joining you on the road to success.

Artists House
Artists House has got to be my favorite industry music blog and Twitter partner this year. Every time I visit this site, I lose myself for hours in the sheer volume of great content. And if you’re following @artistshouse on Twitter, you are sure to learn about the latest trends that they find all over the internet. I’ve stopped trying to keep up with them. It’s best just to visit their site directly, and soak it all in. You won’t be sorry!

Band Letter
Bands need newsletters, right? Well Band Letter makes it easy for you by designing a customized html newsletter for you to send to your email list. In addition to enabling you to keep your fans up to date, you can also make your newsletter a mini-store for you and your band by including links to merchandise, and even your songs on iTunes. I had been trying to take my former snail mail newsletter online for a while this year, but I was constantly frustrated at my efforts at doing it myself. Finally, I signed up for this service, and designer Kevin Greenstein has made my life so much easier – and saved me from pulling out my hair. As much as we indie musicians love to do things ourselves, it’s also good to delegate. Thanks Band Letter!!!

Bob Baker’s The Buzz Factor Blog
Bob Baker has been THE VOICE of indie music promotion for as long as I can remember. Whether you read his Guerrilla Music Marketing or MySpace Music Marketing eBooks, or visit his blog, attend his events, or just listen to his advice, you will be blown away by the generosity of the information he shares.

Derek Sivers
Now that Derek Sivers has sold CD Baby to Disc Makers, he is still scratching his itch to help indie musicians. On his personal site, he shares his unique perspective of the indie music scene and indie musicians. His upcoming new project MuckWork, will “help you make a living with your music, by doing your uncreative dirty work for you, so you can focus on playing, writing, and improving.” Love that!

Hypebot is the first website that I found this year that used the term “Musician Middle Class” – what an empowering concept! This site features tons of articles and tips for the musicians who are serious about getting the job done.

Indie Band Survival Guide
Co-authors Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan are lead members of Beatnik Turtle, a rock band based out of Chicago. They play live, have produced eighteen albums, written music for television, films, and comedy shows at Second City, and licensed music to ABC Family, all without a label. They’ve also created a website with TONS of resources for you to use. Oh, and they also published a book of the same name on St. Martin’s Griffin Publishing. Wow!

Inner Rhythm
Kavit Haria is a tabla musician in London who also consults about the music business. He has a great mind for marketing and strategy, and I’ve enjoyed a number of his books, in addition to his blog this year. He is a huge proponent for musicians becoming music entrepreneurs – musopreneurs – and taking their power into their own hands. I’m also working with Kavit on an international musician project that you’ll be hearing about in 2009, and I can’t wait because it will be very tasty!

Know the Music Biz
I met David Rose this year through the Cyber PR Mastermind Group, and was amazed at the amount of information and articles on his site. You may have even read one of his articles here! To keep his blog fresh, he also includes many guest bloggers, and the marketing strategies he presents are effective and affordable.

Lefsetz Letter
Love him or hate him, Bob Lefsetz is always keeping it real during his rants on the music industry.

Madalyn Sklar’s Music Biz Blog
Also founder of GoGirls (Cuz Chicks Rock!), Madalyn offers her down to earth wisdom for indie musicians. If you ever meet her in person, she’s just like that for real. Love her!

Musician Wages
How can I not include this blog that’s dedicated to the working musician? Here you can find out what to take with you on that cruise ship gig you just booked, as well as how to haul your gear on mass transit. This is also where I found Cameron Mizell’s article on selling original music on iTunes, which by itself was awesome!

New Music Strategies
Andrew Dubber is a gentleman, scholar, and a DJ. Ian Wallman from Output production call’s New Music Strategies a “site that both informs and stimulates ‘fresh & forward thinking’ about an industry that’s in its greatest period of change since the introduction of the wax cylinder”. Need I say more?

Reverb Nation
I love Reverb Nation for the TOYS!!! This site has all the free coolest widgets, fan sign ups, and band newsletter templates to keep you busy for a long time. And did I mention that it’s FREE?

Sound Music, Sound Money
I really love where Doug Ross is coming from. As a full-time musician for 20 years (without getting famous or going broke!), he shares what he knows about personal finance, so we can learn how to keep – and grow – what we earn.

Thirty Day Challenge
In August of this year, I joined thousands of people worldwide to participate in the 4th Annual Thirty Day Challenge. Led by Ed Dale, the Australian guitarist turned internet marketer, we all learned the basics of niche marketing and search engine optimization (SEO). I practiced my new tricks on test blogs, and have been tweaking Rock Star Life Lessons ever since. This was also free, so there was no charge for the awesomeness!

Tone Box Digital
Can’t forget to mention Tone Box Digital, the online music label that’s going against the big dogs for’s Small Business Contest. Run by Jason Bradford, this digital label is founded on the idea that the artist always makes the most money. Tell me THAT’s not a new music business model!! Check out the contest, and Vote for Tone Box Digital while you’re at it! 😉

Ah, what else can I say about Twitter? For one thing, if you’re reading this blog post, there’s a damn good chance that you heard about it via Twitter, so that’s a good reason for a plug right there. If you are a musician, and you’re not on Twitter, you’re missing out. Nuff said!