Monday, January 21, 2013

How to Find an Audience for Your Songs

Songwriter Stephen Bautista
"An artist's sphere of influence is the world." - Carl Maria von Weber

"My music is best understood by children and animals." - Igor Stravinsky

So, you’re a songwriter and you work weekly if not daily on your songs. You toil, you suffer, you pull your hair out for the right line or melody or hook. Then you finish and think, “OK, so now what?”

You may look for and find a mentor, a songwriting pro, or musician and get a stamp of approval, but this isn’t always necessary. Sometimes, it’s just nice to get it out and see what people think. And that’s easier than ever with the tools we have at our fingertips (including the one you’re reading now!)

First things first: Demoing the Song

OK, now for artists and many songwriters, I usually suggest a well produced demo to help most in getting things moving, but for the purpose of just getting people’s thoughts, let’s keep it simple.

Sometimes a nice Youtube video, low budget, just you and a guitar, or piano, is all you need for this. We’re not trying to sell this, or get noticed by labels or even publishers with this. Our goal here is to get this out to friends, family, and fans (or to build fans if you have none).

Here's an terrific example from songwriter Stephen Bautista. He even has gotten a few comments from random listeners on his Youtube page.

Another answer is a simple program like Garageband, that can give you a quick way to play a virtual piano, or record your guitar and voice. Mixdown is a snap.

The point here is, simple is best. Don’t try to get too fancy or spend too much time here. You can go down those roads later with the pro demo for publishers and/or sales.

Where to Find an Audience, Part One: The Internet

This is easy if you are a social media creature. Twitter, Facebook, Facebook Pages, and even LinkedIn are great places to let your friends, fans, and family give their thoughts. All these make it easy to share a Youtube clip or MP3.

But there are other places you can find a good following as well. is the new MySpace for musicians. It has a large following, and is very easy to setup and use. You can find new folks to follow you, and best of all it’s a nice way to show off music to social media as it integrates very well with Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, etc.

Other places like,, and are also great places to start getting feedback on your songs.

Where to Find an Audience, Part Two: LIVE

Well, this can be easy or it can be hard.

Easy is playing for your family, and having some friends over and have a listening party.

Maybe your church is open to letting you sing a song for a service, or special event.

Coffeehouses are also great places to find a small but attentive crowd. Tell them you are looking for feedback, and gauge their reaction.

Wherever you can, however you can, sharing your songs with folks you can get to is an integral part to getting feedback, criticism, and just some simple interaction on your craft.

"Feedback is the breakfast of champions." - Ken Blanchard

Have a great week!

Eric Copeland is a producer, songwriter, and has been showing his songs to people (whether they liked them or not) for almost 40 years. If you are a songwriter and need help recording and sharing your songs with the world, check out 


Alice4God said...

You have shared some great thoughts here, Eric! I wholeheartedly agree that getting feedback is important, even if a song is not ready to demo yet (or if you think it's ready but you're working on the budget to record). If for no other reason, it provides that external validation that we all need sometimes.

For me, YouTube has been the best outlet (Alice4God1) and I'll add that if you're having trouble getting views as a songwriter it can help to cover a few songs that are likely to attract your target audience - and make sure that you invite them to check out your originals in the description field.

I also found a group that provides a monthly challenge and a place to get constructive feedback from other Christian songwriters. I highly recommend it! Doesn't seem to be any agenda other than Christian songwriters supporting one another.

*I* need to get out there and do some coffee houses and the like. Any recommendations on how to find them?

ginny peters said...

Love your words. I have just recorded my first Gospel album after four secular CD's and feel like I have come home. please check out I have been lucky enough to sign some songs to Gaither Music.
Keep up the great work.
Ginny Peters.

Ben Chilcote said...

Great article, Eric. YouTube is a stage to the world for songwriters. I have used YouTube to build a sizeable audience.

There is another great place to get feedback online and that's at the WCS Songwriting Club through The songwriting club is through Facebook. It's a great format for posting videos or soundcloud files and getting feedback from a growing community of Christian songwriters. There is also an optional monthly song challenge.

The WCS Songwriting Club has prooved to be a great place for newbies looking to grow in confidence in writing and performing their own music.

I appreciate the blog!
Ben Chilcote

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Eric Copeland is an author, producer, keyboardist, songwriter, and president of Creative Soul Companies. What is Creative Soul? Our main goals are to inform, encourage, and assist Christian creative folks in ministry, no matter where they are in their journey. Thanks for reading! Find out more about us at