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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in digital distribution
19
Dec
Posted by on in Worshipsong

If you have ever recorded a worship song, it is an exhilarating experience, but also a lot of work. First there is the writing, wrestling with the words to make them work with the music and rhyme, and say what God has put on your heart to say. There is capturing the right melodies, and putting them together. If you are making a studio recording, there is the process of lining up a producer, players or your band, and the preparation of the tracks if used.  Then there is the recording, sometimes over multiple sessions. You and the producer sifting through the mixes, finding the right ones. Adding the effects, mixing, mastering. Then there is the distribution. Preparing the masters.  Uploading them for the CD or digital distribution process. Tagging the MP3.s, Creating cover art. Social media, etc, etc. For a quality recording, it can be months of effort. 

Then, you release.  If you are doing well you will get a few weeks worth of notice. Then, if you are like many artists or churches, your song may not get many opportunities to be used outside of your own ministry or church, and maybe a few close to it. A worship leader friend told me once that, there are probably 12-15 opportunities for new songs to be introduced in his church in a year, max. Out of those, 8-10 will go to a known 'big' artist. Leaving you, at most, 2 or 3 opportunities to get a song used in an average church. Most artists do the following two things - they release a CD, maybe a lyric video, and they post chord charts on their web site. Then they wait for their songs to be found, and maybe do some social media marketing for a little while.

If this sounds challenging, it is. There is an industry out there, and it depends on getting churches to sing it's songs. But this should not dissuade you from singing a new song, and giving your songs their best possible voice. A good song is like gold, with lasting value and great beauty. The resources you create will certainly bless your church. But,if you want to share them more widely, there are a few things you, as an artist, can do to help. Most of them are easy, yet few artists do them to any great extent. If you really want all those months of effort to benefit other churches, and to give your songs a chance to be used more widely, There is more you can do.


Do what the Industry Does

On the day a new 'big worship' release, here is what industry does:

- Their chord charts, and sometimes orchestrations are released on platforms like PraiseCharts and CCLI SongSelect
- Their multitrack stems are released on Multitracks.com and LoopCommunity.com
- They have a giveaway of a song plus a chord chart available
- The have interviews, reviews, and write-ups all ready to roll
- They submit resources to song curators like Worship Leader Magazine SongDiscovery

Some of this is marketing, and just helps to get your music out there. To distribute your music more widely, you can do giveaways on platforms like Noisetrade or Worshipsong. Some sites like PraiseCharts will give away your music to help.  You can find sites that will do independent worship music reviews. If your music is strong,they will do some reviews for you.

Many of these steps are also intended to help churches make use of the new songs immediately. A large number of churches use CCLI SongSelect or PraiseCharts almost exclusively to get their resources. The chord charts on these platforms work in common software apps like Onsong, ProPresenter, Planning Center Online, etc. It goes without saying that, for the big artists, the chord charts and correct and consistent (or should be).

Having multitracks available for sites like Loop Community, Multitracks, Worshipsong Band, or Ableton means churches that use these technologies can use the songs immediately. Many churches will use these resources to be able to quickly incorporate a new song, because they usually allow elements of the recording to be incorporated, while the most common instrumentation and live vocals can be provided by the worship team. These platforms can also be great for rehearsal and training.

Whether for chord charts, orchestration, or multitracks, most of these platforms are accessible, even to independent artists and church recording ministries. It takes some extra effort to create chord charts in the right format, to create Ableton projects, to create click tracks, identify section markers, and to prepare and/or upload your resources. For the songs you think other churches are most likely to adopt, the effort may well be worthwhile.


Take the Long View

Worship music can definitely take time to make its way to where it can be best used.  In order for your music to continuing to spread and make impact beyond the couple of months after it is released, you need to take the long view. Keep socializing your music, looking for ways to point people who are interested to the resources you have made available. Sometimes a song giveaway opportunity may arise a year or two after you release. Submit your song anyway. If there are artists who might use your songs, enable them to do so.  Give them a break on royalties or help them get resources in their hands, like CDs they can sell. Use your recording investment creatively. Ensure you register your music with CCLI and, if you expect radio airplay, BMI, ASCAP, SESAC, etc. Just having your music in these platforms will help it to appear serious, and therefore be taken seriously.


Ways We Can Help

Here at Worshipsong, one of our missions is to help connect users of worship songs with creators of worship songs. To that end, we offer a few specific ways we can help you with the above, and make the process much easier in many cases.

- Our song database gives you a way to upload or link all of the resources for your music in one place.  You can give access to all your resources using a single link.  As an example, here is Kristen Gilles, an artist who has shared her catalog on our site. From this link, you can hear all her music, get her chord charts, and find her available multitracks. Its not difficult at all(and it's free) for you to do the same on our site.
- We can act as the administrator for your music, ensuring it is registered with CCLI, etc. Contact us.
- Our free multitrack platform, Worshipsong Band, offers a great way to distribute a single resource including everything a church needs to employ your song, including chord charts, multitracks, and section markers.  The many benefits of using this resource are discussed in this article. An added benefit is that our platform has many users that are looking for high quality alternative and indie worship resources just like yours. And its completely open and free to use.


In order to help your music be usable by churches and have staying power, give out more than a song and a chord chart. Make your resources accessible on the most commonly used platforms. Make them easy to use. Then, when people are interested in your music, point them to all your resources, wherever they are. Keep doing so. Just because your song was written a year or two ago does not make it any less relevant today.

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06
May

Worshipsong Band 2.9 Released

Posted by on in Worshipsong

Worshipsong Band version 2.9 is now releasing for all platforms: Windows, MacOS, IOS, and Android.  We've added new capabilities to our app to help create better flow in your worship sets through adding a new 'Presentation' feature to the set list.  Using this new window offers much more control of the flow of your set, such as:

- A new Video Loop feature lets you use looping video backgrounds on Windows and MacOS platforms.  Any video codec  supported by the widely popular FFMPEG decoding library is supported.

Image Backgrounds in JPG, BMP, TGA, and PNG formats are now supported.

Enhanced Control of the set flow, including automatic pad fade out/in, auto play next song, switch pad banks automatically, and control of when backgrounds switch in the lyrics display.

- As always, we continue to improve the stability and quality of our software.

All of the new version 2.9 features have been added based on user requests, continuing our tradition of listening and responding to the needs of our worship leader user community.  Worshipsong Band remains the most feature rich worship multi track platform available, and, of course, remains free,  Our open format is the only dedicated 'user friendly' playback platform that does not require you to register, use our cloud, or buy your content from a single provider.  Many users source their content from multiple sources, and even make many of their own tracks.  And, of course, independent artists from around the world offer their tracks in the Worshipsong Store, most completely free.  Worshipsong Band ensures a consistent playback experience for content from all sources.

 
Worshipsong Band received a Worship Leader Magazine Editor's Choice award for 2015, the second time it has been so honored.  Download it free from www.worshipsong.com or the IOS App Store or Google Play today.
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17
Aug

WorshipSong Band Version 2.3 Released

Posted by on in Worshipsong

We are always looking for ways to enable Worship Leaders to make use of more and cheaper resources.  Our new release of WorshipSong Band gives users a whole new way to use our software.  New features include:

Metronome and Guide Tracks

Worshipsong Band now includes a metronome feature. Any tempo from 20-150 BPM may be set, in times of 2/4, 3/4, 4/4, 6/8,and 8/8.  In addition, song timings may now be specified in tempo beats in addition to minutes/seconds.  Adding songs just became a whole lot easier, and it's a snap to set up your chord charts to work in WorshipSong without tracks, allowing your band to use a click track even without any audio augmentation.

Guide tracks is our name for combined click and cue tracks.  These are a part of many multitrack offerings.  What is different about WorshipSong Band's guide tracks is that they need not be pre-recorded.  WorshipSong now has the capability to automatically build a click track and play cues to accompany music you add to the app.  As long as the song follows a consistent tempo, WorshipSong Band will supply the needed click and cues.  And both click and cues follow you through the song as you loop and jump to different sections.

How does this save money?  Take a look at the video below, where we show how you can use a simple rhythm track and get all the features of a full multitrack offering (except individual instrument control), as a small fraction of the cost of a full multitrack.  Such rhythm and split tracks are widely available for just about any song.

Tempo Control

WorshipSong Band now allows tempo control of your songs.  All features of the app such as looping,pitch control, chord charts, etc work with tempo control.  This allows you to fine tune the speed of the song.  Due to the app's sophisticated looping features, a song's tempo can only be adjusted prior to playing the song, but the desired tempo is always set in the set list.

Pads

These were actually introduced a couple of versions back, buy they a great to add ambiance to your set, as well as a good way to seamlessly link songs together with their built-in cross-fade feature.  A single set of pads in all keys is all that is required, and WorshipSong automatically plays them based on the key of your song.

Remember, all versions of WorshipSong Band are available on all platforms, and we never release a version for one platform that is out of sync with the others. Whether you use Windows, MacOS, IOS, or Android, WorshipSong Band will work for you.

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01
Aug

THE NEXT DESTINATION FOR FINDING, LISTENING, DOWNLOADING & AND SUBMITTING WORSHIP SONGS

Posted by on in Worshipsong Central

Bruce Adolph: Holland, you have had quite a history of being involved in worship music and now you are rolling out a “destination” website that offers several opportunities for those involved in modern worship music. Please give us an overview of what your vision is for www.worshipsong.com?

Holland Davis: On the surface the vision of worshipsong.com is very simple. Provide a way for worship leaders and worshippers to hear a complete song and download a FREE chart so they can teach the song to their church, bible study, or simply play it during their personal times of worship. It was born out of a conversation I had with Pastor Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa who said, “my sermons are free, why can’t worship songs be free.” So, I prayed and the idea for worshipsong.com was born.

Now, the unexpected surprise came when I received a call from an A&R guy in the industry who asked me about a song I wrote called “I Will Stand”. I asked why. He said it went from the 800’s to the 300’s on CCLI over one reporting period and he wanted to hear the song. What was the difference? Worshipsong. com. The only place the song was promoted was on the site. I learned from this experience that one of the benefits of worshipsong.com is greater exposure to worship leaders, which means greater visibility on CCLI.

Another surprise was the number of worship leaders and worshippers wanting to purchase the songs to distribute to their worship teams. I felt that a FREE chord chart allows me to fulfill Pastor Chuck Smith’s vision to make worship FREE, but I felt that a FREE recording would be asking too much. It takes a lot of money to record a song and I only felt it was fair to charge for the mp3’s. This led us to offer the ability for songwriters to sell their songs via worshipsong.com. This can happen one of two ways. They can sell their songs through our online store, or they can sell their songs by linking back to their website or iTunes. We also secured distribution into iTunes and 500 Christian bookstores via on-demand kiosks with selected songs from worshipsong. com. Our desire was really focused on ministry,

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04
Jan

New Digital Distribution Opportunity

Posted by on in Worshipsong Central

Worshipsong is pleased to offer a new service to our songwriters and artists. Worshipsong offers digital distribution into 500 Christian Bookstores via the myMEDIA BurnBars.  These are kiosks where people can burn music on demand.

HOW DO I GET INCLUDED?

STEP ONE: Join Worshipsong.com

STEP TWO: Sign our Digital Distribution Agreement.  Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

STEP THREE: Upload your CD and Artwork to our FTP Site.  A link to our FTP Site will be included after you enroll in our program.

  • Mp3's must be encoded at 320 kbps
  • Artwork must be at 600 x 600 dpi
  • xl spread sheet must be completed (will send with ftp info)
  • Files must be zipped in one file
  • If you need help obtaining ISRC Codes, we can provide those for you.


STEP FOUR: Tell all your friends to find your music at their local Christian Bookstore.

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