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Alternative Ways to Sell Your Old Music

With the dawn of the electronic age and the invention of the MP3 and other small file formats, conventional music CDs are becoming more and more redundant to people who simply don’t have the space to keep a large CD collection. Although it is nice to hold a physical copy of your favorite artist’s latest work and study the booklet cover-to-cover, chances are that you would have more use out of a digital file that you can put on your iPod or listen to on your mobile phone or PC. Even if you have a large CD collection, most of the music is more than likely already stored on your hard drive and you are looking for alternative ways to sell your old music.

Walk-In Dealer

The traditional way to sell old music is to walk to your closest record store, book store or thrift store that deals with second-hand music and sell it to them. The benefit of this is that you get your offer instantly and you can walk out of the store with cash in your pocket. Although you know that you won’t get the full price someone would be willing to pay for the music, dealers are usually up to date on the real value of music CDs and will make a fair offer, considering they still have to resell it. They would also have no qualms in buying a whole collection of CDs, which means less hassle for you.

Online Auction

If you have a couple of rare copies in your music collection, it might be worth it to put them up for auction where people have to bid for it. EBay is currently your biggest online auction house and would give you the greatest exposure. It’s true that bidders are often bargain hunters, so you might end up selling it for less than the dealer would have paid for it, but if your copy is rare or collectible, you could have multiple bidders chasing the price up and end up selling it at a profit.

Online Dealers

If it seems like too much effort to pack up your whole CD collection and take it to the store for valuation, online dealers might be the solution for you. To sell your old CDs and DVDs online, you will be required to enter the barcode on the CD cover to determine its value. Alternatively, you could also scan the CDs with your webcam. These websites usually offer a free shipping service within the U.S. Note that some of these stores have a minimum amount of items you can sell at once, so it is more suitable for larger collections.

Private Sale

You could choose to do a private sale, either online or physically. You could advertise your old music CDs in a local newspaper, on craigslist or list it on an online marketplace. However, be sure that the service you are using is reputable and be on the lookout for scammers. Selling privately may get you a higher price, but it is not always the safest route to go.

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How to Make an Irresistible Music Demo

Before the multiplatinum albums, before the stadium gigs, the most legendary musicians had to go through one thing: the music demo.

Short for “demonstration,” the demo serves as a showcase of what you can do as a musician. It is your ticket to collaborators, jobs, live gigs, and the almighty recording contract.

There really are no excuses to not create a professional-sounding demo, now that recording and production mediums are as many as they are and reasonably priced. So how do you make a music demo that entices the most stolid producers and A&R executives?

1. Order is important.

A demo is not a full-length artistic statement. It only contains a maximum of three or four songs. Also, the songs must lead with the one that captures the rapt attention of listeners. The one that puts your best foot forward. Blow them away from the get-go; don’t nix your opening salvo with lengthy intros (unless the genre calls for them).

This is one area in life where “save the best for last” doesn’t apply. There is a good chance that the listener would stop the playlist halfway, so place your riskier songs third or fourth.

2. Professional studio is still tops.

An in-this-century approach is to record and produce the demo by yourself. Music honchos appreciate crackerjacks. If you don’t have the chops, enrol in production schools or take some online tutorials. If you’re a DJ, you may record your demo during your live sets. So that your prospects hear the exuberance of the audience over your music.

But the best demos are still made in fully fledged studios, where producers and engineers can use their expertise on your product.


3. Beware of home studios.

It’s true that recording and production equipment have become democratised over the years. But a home studio still has nothing on a full-service studio. A dedicated studio is built to industry standards and well-equipped to sharpen the sound of your music demo. The average home studio, on the other hand, is usually pressed for space.

Too often, a mere basement, bathroom, or closet doubles as a home studio. The acoustics of these facilities fall flat compared to a real studio.

4. Demo forma.

Demos have come a long way from cassette tapes. Today you can save your demo in a lot of formats other than CDR or DVD-R. Your demo can be saved on a flash drive or SD card, for instance. Or you can upload the music to the cloud as streaming clips or zip files. Just inscribe the URL on a flier, postcard, or business card.

5. Make your packaging stand out.

Package your demo in a way that makes it pop out in a heap. Tie it to your branding. For example, if you’re looking to break into tweeny pop, use bedazzlers on your business card. If you’re into country music, maybe tie your press kit with a lasso? (more…)

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