A big part of music promotion is getting radio play.
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Whether it’s your local radio station or the new online radio stations, the exposure you can get as a rapper or singer from radio is crazy. In this Rap Beats and Instrumentals support article I’ll give you tips on how to get some serious radio play and exposure. This article is part of a series on how to become a successful rapper or singer. You can view all the articles in this series on the author’s page.
Radio aint dead! It’s still a great way for an independent musician to get their music heard by a huge number of people. But with so many musicians, and mainstream radio only catering to a select few “superstars” it’s hard work getting heard. So how does someone trying to become a rapper or singer use radio to gain exposure?
Q: I’ve got a SMASH single! How do I get my music on the radio?
A: Getting on radio can be a hard task and there are entire companies dedicated to what’s called Radio Tracking (getting your music on radio and tracking the spins). But hiring these companies is hella expensive. You CAN do it yourself – but its lots of work. The very FIRST thing you need to do is make sure the rapping beats and r&b beats you chose are HIT radio-style beats. Next make sure your song is properly mixed and mastered. NO radio station in the world will take an unmastered song and add it to rotation. It’s usually a good idea to get some professional physical CDs made in case the stations you send your music to don’t accept digital download links. You’ll also need a good Biography of yourself as an artist or group and some professional photos if you want to do this right. I’ve written other articles on most of those subjects. After this it is time to find radio station’s you’re going to send your music to.
This is important and it may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised what up and coming rappers and singers do – its mad unprofessional. Do some research and find stations that will actually play your music. (As a rapper, don’t send your CD to a country station). Commercial Radio, the main pop/rock/urban stations in your area, are probably not the best place to start because they are very controlled and hard to break into. College radio is great for independent artists though because it is less controlled and more accepting to independent and underground rappers and singers. A good resource is called the “Indie Bible.” It’s a MASSIVE book full of contact info for radio stations and places to send your music. Compile a list of stations and get ready to mail your CDs and email your digital links out to them. (Make sure whenever you can, you find a specific PERSON at the station to send your music to – either a specific DJ or the Music Director.)
Work in steps. Start locally, then go state/province wide, and then work nationally. At each stage make sure you follow-up with whoever you sent your package to two weeks after you send it out. Remember not to be annoying and it’s all good if you get in touch with them to see if they got your music and had a chance to listen. Be kind, polite and real and you can get some serious exposure through radio.