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4 fiverr guys vs 1 local studio guy on producing my song
Old 24th June 2020
  #1
4 fiverr guys vs 1 local studio guy on producing my song

I would like to have a song produced externally. I have a few thoughts about that.

Budget: max 700$

I just do the recording. Guitar, vocals, background vocals, some percussion, some kick and synth maybe.

The result should be a great pop song No. 1 chart hit. Editing, mixing, mastering, stay away from me.

Now I could either invest the money in a local producer with an ATC SCM110ASL monitoring and the corresponding room, or I could get 4 cheap fiverr producers for the money and then have 4 songs to choose from and release the one I like best.

What would you do?

It would also be possible to invest the money in professional drummers and bassists on fiverr.

If I had the time to sit down with the local producer to produce, I would probably choose this one. But unfortunately I don't have the time.
Old 25th June 2020
  #2
Hard to say. $700 is pretty cheap for a full production - unless you've got an up and coming hidden gem of a producer, and you yourself are an A-grade writer, a #1 pop hit isn't exactly a given. In my market, that's about 1/4 of the rate you'd expect to pay for a pro producer. So you may need to be realistic.

I don't know why monitors are important in terms of skill grade either

Mind you, 4 guys working for $150-200 is much less of a guarantee. I'd suggest the one guy at a better rate if it was strictly an A/B.

If you want a pop song real drums and bass aren't exactly a necessity.
Old 25th June 2020
  #3
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
Hard to say. $700 is pretty cheap for a full production - unless you've got an up and coming hidden gem of a producer, and you yourself are an A-grade writer, a #1 pop hit isn't exactly a given. In my market, that's about 1/4 of the rate you'd expect to pay for a pro producer. So you may need to be realistic.

I don't know why monitors are important in terms of skill grade either

Mind you, 4 guys working for $150-200 is much less of a guarantee. I'd suggest the one guy at a better rate if it was strictly an A/B.

If you want a pop song real drums and bass aren't exactly a necessity.
Thanks, that's good to know

All I know from the local people is that the equipment is good. The references are usually better with the Fiverr people.

We are here at Gearslutz - equipment is a factor here

I think I'll take 1 Fiverr guy in the $700 range where I like the references.
Old 25th June 2020
  #4
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks, that's good to know

All I know from the local people is that the equipment is good. The references are usually better with the Fiverr people.

We are here at Gearslutz - equipment is a factor here

I think I'll take 1 Fiverr guy in the $700 range where I like the references.
My advice:

- ignore anyone who says "I've worked with x y and z" without actually being able to point to tracks and what they've done on them. It generally means they a) didn't work with them at all, b) were non musical staff (eg the teaboy), c) might have been an assistant at best or d) recorded or mixed something incidental (like a mini acoustic performance or even an unauthorised remix!). People with actual credits list them. (you can also check on JAXSTA as to official credits - most major label credits are there).

- if someone is offering eg mixing for $100/track whilst sitting in front of an SSL - red flag - they're not working in that studio!

- go for people who's real world examples you like. If you get a bad feeling about anyone whilst in the negotiation stage - don't be afraid to back out.

- always go for the person and their results, not the gear. I cringe when people say "the studio who mixes my tracks"....we're not automatons!
Old 25th June 2020
  #5
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
My advice:

- ignore anyone who says "I've worked with x y and z" without actually being able to point to tracks and what they've done on them. It generally means they a) didn't work with them at all, b) were non musical staff (eg the teaboy), c) might have been an assistant at best or d) recorded or mixed something incidental (like a mini acoustic performance or even an unauthorised remix!). People with actual credits list them. (you can also check on JAXSTA as to official credits - most major label credits are there).

- if someone is offering eg mixing for $100/track whilst sitting in front of an SSL - red flag - they're not working in that studio!

- go for people who's real world examples you like. If you get a bad feeling about anyone whilst in the negotiation stage - don't be afraid to back out.

- always go for the person and their results, not the gear. I cringe when people say "the studio who mixes my tracks"....we're not automatons!
Thanks. I figured that references don't necessarily mean anything. I look at the sound samples, if I like them and comments at Fiverr and that the price fits the offer.

Whether the Fiverr type achieves the desired results, which one has in mind, remains a bit of a matter of luck, I think. Since the arrangement is already finished, it should not be too difficult.


The local people often only make rock bands with albums. The real pop producers often only do label work, which I can understand, or take horrendous amounts of money just because they have worked with this or that guy.
Old 25th June 2020
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks. I figured that references don't necessarily mean anything. I look at the sound samples, if I like them and comments at Fiverr and that the price fits the offer.

Whether the Fiverr type achieves the desired results, which one has in mind, remains a bit of a matter of luck, I think. Since the arrangement is already finished, it should not be too difficult.


The local people often only make rock bands with albums. The real pop producers often only do label work, which I can understand, or take horrendous amounts of money just because they have worked with this or that guy.
It is difficult, but I generally feel Fivrr is a race to the bottom - people desperate for work. But you might get lucky!
Old 25th June 2020
  #7
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
It is difficult, but I generally feel Fivrr is a race to the bottom - people desperate for work. But you might get lucky!
I agree, I don't like it either, but everyone has to look where they are these days.

If I had the time, I would also like to sit down with someone close by. I used to do that every now and then. It's fun to wotk with someone together and has the advantage that you learn something new.

Since I have children and a job where I have to sit in front of the screen all day long, I have lost the desire and time to work on it myself.
Old 25th June 2020
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Progger's Avatar
I agree that hoping to get a #1-hit-quality song from a $700 budget is a high hope indeed. All of psycho_monkey's other bits of advice are extremely sound, too.

But there are many alternatives to Fiverr that might connect you to some better folks, particularly if you're planning on working remotely anyway. Soundbetter is a good one, I've done some very enjoyable session work through their platform in the last couple years (as a session musician, not engineer, but there are many good engineers and producers who use the site). Even better, research players and engineers who have contributed to recent recordings that you enjoy and contact them. Their services might be more attainable than you think.

Still, if you want real bass and drums, performed and recorded capably by good musicians, as well as a mixing engineer, as well as a mastering engineer, you might need to budget a bit more. Hard to know until you start picking the capable individuals who end up helping you out.
Old 25th June 2020
  #9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Progger View Post
I agree that hoping to get a #1-hit-quality song from a $700 budget is a high hope indeed. All of psycho_monkey's other bits of advice are extremely sound, too.

But there are many alternatives to Fiverr that might connect you to some better folks, particularly if you're planning on working remotely anyway. Soundbetter is a good one, I've done some very enjoyable session work through their platform in the last couple years (as a session musician, not engineer, but there are many good engineers and producers who use the site). Even better, research players and engineers who have contributed to recent recordings that you enjoy and contact them. Their services might be more attainable than you think.

Still, if you want real bass and drums, performed and recorded capably by good musicians, as well as a mixing engineer, as well as a mastering engineer, you might need to budget a bit more. Hard to know until you start picking the capable individuals who end up helping you out.
Thanks for the help. Just scanned the site for a minute. The Producers seem a little bit more professional there, as you say.

Payment's are off the website there, right?

I find Fiverr a bit clearer with the prices and more secure when it runs on the platform.
Old 26th June 2020
  #10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Progger View Post
I agree that hoping to get a #1-hit-quality song from a $700 budget is a high hope indeed. All of psycho_monkey's other bits of advice are extremely sound, too.

But there are many alternatives to Fiverr that might connect you to some better folks, particularly if you're planning on working remotely anyway. Soundbetter is a good one, I've done some very enjoyable session work through their platform in the last couple years (as a session musician, not engineer, but there are many good engineers and producers who use the site). Even better, research players and engineers who have contributed to recent recordings that you enjoy and contact them. Their services might be more attainable than you think.

Still, if you want real bass and drums, performed and recorded capably by good musicians, as well as a mixing engineer, as well as a mastering engineer, you might need to budget a bit more. Hard to know until you start picking the capable individuals who end up helping you out.
Agree with all of this. Should have suggested soundbetter - plus you can always approach producers you like. Doesn't hurt to ask!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks for the help. Just scanned the site for a minute. The Producers seem a little bit more professional there, as you say.

Payment's are off the website there, right?

I find Fiverr a bit clearer with the prices and more secure when it runs on the platform.
That's because it's designed for people for whom price is the critical factor. It's just not where you're likely to find quality.

I'd at least check out some soundbetter options.
Old 29th June 2020
  #11
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks for the help. Just scanned the site for a minute. The Producers seem a little bit more professional there, as you say.

Payment's are off the website there, right?

I find Fiverr a bit clearer with the prices and more secure when it runs on the platform.
SoundBetter is where it's at for online collaborations! Payments are all kept within the site (just like Fivver) In fact, providers can get banned for accepting payment off-platform from SB clients.

$700 can get a pretty darn good producer on SoundBetter, however, is this your whole budget for the song? Getting a #1 hit is difficult, even with a large budget. The production fees are typically going to be the cheapest part. Radio Promotions, A&R, Blog Submissions, Playlist Submissions and Publicists, they all add up to a LOT of money.

A radio campaign alone can cost tens-of-thousands dollars. A decent publicist can cost upwards of $1500 per month for a campaign (which needs to be several months long.)

Not trying to burst your bubble, I definitely don't want to discourage you, just trying to set realistic expectations. Ask yourself why a #1 hit is important to you and what you are really willing to commit to get there.

IF you have a really stellar song, with awesome production quality, you might be able to gain interest from a label, but then you have to weigh the option of going into massive debt with the label. Remember, labels don't give out money, they lend it.
Old 29th June 2020
  #12
Lives for gear
 

Is the local producer a better musician than you? If not find someone who is, pay them what theyโ€™re worth.
Old 29th June 2020
  #13
Quote:
Originally Posted by EMMST View Post
SoundBetter is where it's at for online collaborations! Payments are all kept within the site (just like Fivver) In fact, providers can get banned for accepting payment off-platform from SB clients.

$700 can get a pretty darn good producer on SoundBetter, however, is this your whole budget for the song? Getting a #1 hit is difficult, even with a large budget. The production fees are typically going to be the cheapest part. Radio Promotions, A&R, Blog Submissions, Playlist Submissions and Publicists, they all add up to a LOT of money.

A radio campaign alone can cost tens-of-thousands dollars. A decent publicist can cost upwards of $1500 per month for a campaign (which needs to be several months long.)

Not trying to burst your bubble, I definitely don't want to discourage you, just trying to set realistic expectations. Ask yourself why a #1 hit is important to you and what you are really willing to commit to get there.

IF you have a really stellar song, with awesome production quality, you might be able to gain interest from a label, but then you have to weigh the option of going into massive debt with the label. Remember, labels don't give out money, they lend it.
Thanks for your message. Very interesting. Actually, I haven't really gotten around to the process of promoting yet.

I just want it to have the quality it takes to be basically a no.1 hit. Then I want to make a music video and see how it goes on.

Is there any literature you can recommend to this process you described?
Old 30th June 2020
  #14
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks for your message. Very interesting. Actually, I haven't really gotten around to the process of promoting yet.

I just want it to have the quality it takes to be basically a no.1 hit. Then I want to make a music video and see how it goes on.

Is there any literature you can recommend to this process you described?
There are several books on the topic of music promotion but most are focused on a grassroots style indie promotion. Most of the higher level promo is played pretty close to the chest of those the the A&R world.

Admittedly most of my knowledge on the subject comes from clients' campaigns and colleagues with much success in the charts. Fortunately I've been blessed to have had a few chart lands myself and have witnessed first hand how much effort and money goes into a release at that level.
Old 1st July 2020
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Thanks for your message. Very interesting. Actually, I haven't really gotten around to the process of promoting yet.

I just want it to have the quality it takes to be basically a no.1 hit. Then I want to make a music video and see how it goes on.

Is there any literature you can recommend to this process you described?
To do a pro level video, you're looking at a substantial cost - many times the cost of actually making the song.

Otherwise you end up with something trying to look pro, but actually looking budget. Far better to do promo vids of acoustic performances, or other home-shot-style content.

But getting a "#1 hit" is the hard bit. First comes the song then the production...and then the marketing. But then - who knows what is going to "take"? even the majors can't predict a hit song mot of the time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EMMST View Post
There are several books on the topic of music promotion but most are focused on a grassroots style indie promotion. Most of the higher level promo is played pretty close to the chest of those the the A&R world.

Admittedly most of my knowledge on the subject comes from clients' campaigns and colleagues with much success in the charts. Fortunately I've been blessed to have had a few chart lands myself and have witnessed first hand how much effort and money goes into a release at that level.
There's not really any secrets to promo in the A+R world. It's not an exact science - but what it boils down to is relationships. The labels have the clout to have direct meetings with radio, to get their artists onto the bigger curated spotify playlists, they have the funds for exciting promo vids, official videos, ads, features etc. All things the indie or unsigned artist either doesn't have the funds, or doesn't have the contacts, to get to happen.
Old 1st July 2020
  #16
Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_monkey View Post
To do a pro level video, you're looking at a substantial cost - many times the cost of actually making the song.

Otherwise you end up with something trying to look pro, but actually looking budget. Far better to do promo vids of acoustic performances, or other home-shot-style content.

But getting a "#1 hit" is the hard bit. First comes the song then the production...and then the marketing. But then - who knows what is going to "take"? even the majors can't predict a hit song mot of the time.



There's not really any secrets to promo in the A+R world. It's not an exact science - but what it boils down to is relationships. The labels have the clout to have direct meetings with radio, to get their artists onto the bigger curated spotify playlists, they have the funds for exciting promo vids, official videos, ads, features etc. All things the indie or unsigned artist either doesn't have the funds, or doesn't have the contacts, to get to happen.
Thank you for your messages.

Like you say: First of all the product/song has to have hit potential. If it has the quality it needs, I'll invest in a video, if not I'll stop here or make another cheap/artistic video.

With music videos I have good contacts, from people who have already made something out of the charts. But of course, this costs more than the song production in common for a hit song.

If I have both, I have to see how it goes on. It doesn't have to be a No#1 hit, but to be played on the radio would be a dream of mine. I'd be willing to pay for that too, if necessary.

So you can only get into the radio via a label or PR manager or something like that? Label also cost me money, right? Or I have a contract where I do not earn anything at the beginning?

Should you call the label with just one song or sing a few more together?
Old 2nd July 2020
  #17
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
If I have both, I have to see how it goes on. It doesn't have to be a No#1 hit, but to be played on the radio would be a dream of mine. I'd be willing to pay for that too, if necessary.
Despite what people think, you generally can't pay to get played "on the radio". Getting played on radio isn't generally that hard - getting played somewhere worthwhile is much harder!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
So you can only get into the radio via a label or PR manager or something like that? Label also cost me money, right? Or I have a contract where I do not earn anything at the beginning?
This is a whole topic that can't be explained in a single post. Anyone can hire PR but the PR company might be selective about who they work with - they need to push these tracks to their contacts, so they have to just believe in it.

Labels....as I said, you'd do better actually reading some books about the music industry.

But - the traditional model is the label signs an artist, pays artist an advance, and pays for their recordings. Label markets the recordings; and takes a large chunk of the proceeds. Artist gets a cut once their advance has been paid back - if they get dropped, they don't have to pay the advance back.

Nowadays there's also licensing deals, where the artist makes the record, the label licesnses and promotes it, and the artist retains ownership of the masters and a bigger cut.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kwaem View Post
Should you call the label with just one song or sing a few more together?
Again, generally speaking most labels (big or small) will only look to sign people who're already making a buzz for themselves. Rarely would a label sign someone from one song, or even a handful of songs, if that person isn't already creating a buzz.

But this is all really simplified....look for a good, up to date book about how the music business works.
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