Niche or jack of all trades?

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This topic contains 18 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  Art Munson 2 months ago.

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    MichaelL
    Participant

    Because genres come and go or rise and fall in popularity, being a one trick pony is the formula for a short career in library music. The hard part is sounding authentic next to the writers who are the masters of one genre. The good news is that very often the mainstream market prefers a neutral, some would say watered down, version of authentic.

    Also, if you have any intentions of writing for film or media, of any variety, you need to be able to cover whatever the project calls for. Sometimes, you must write in many genres within the project and, at other times, the most appropriate music isn’t genre specific. The broader your palette, the better.

    #32655 Reply

    Michael Nickolas
    Participant

    The hard part is sounding authentic next to the writers who are the masters of one genre. The good news is that very often the mainstream market prefers a neutral, some would say watered down, version of authentic.

    Good point Michael. I asked a contact at a top library once if they needed any world/ethnic albums. He said no, and when we do we just go to a writer from that country! Duh.. On the other hand my biggest seller is a South African style piece so I keep trying different things.

    I made a list recently of my top tracks being used in TV shows and my top RF sellers, hoping the information would guide me towards what to create next. Everything from country music to Bollywood was on the list and nearly every track on the list was in a unique style. So my vote is to branch out and create in many genres.

    #32656 Reply

    MichaelL
    Participant

    I made a list recently of my top tracks being used in TV shows and my top RF sellers, hoping the information would guide me towards what to create next.

    That’s a good exercise, Michael. It seems this business follows the 80/20 rule. You’ll make 80% of your income from 20% of your tracks, so knowing which 20% work for you is a plus.

    With that in mind, especially for RF libraries that curate tracks as they are uploaded. If you write in only one genre you increase your chances of “hitting the wall,” at which point the library says, “we have enough of genre XYZ.” That’s not the best time to start branching out.

    The second issue, especially when it takes hundreds, or thousands of tracks to be viable, is that if you only write in one genre you are eventually competing against yourself.

    #32657 Reply

    Art Munson
    Keymaster

    if you only write in one genre you are eventually competing against yourself.

    So true. For now, I have tapped out of swampy, bluesy guitar licks!

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