Not too long ago I asked the extremely intelligent and attractive Garageband Guide community a question.
Where’s your favorite place on the web to upload your music?
Dozens of you got back to me with a variety of answers, with one site coming out on top by a clear margin..
As a musician and producer, discovering Soundcloud was one of those ‘where have you been all of my life‘ moments.
As the community pointed out, there ARE other sites similar to Soundcloud that are perhaps more focussed on bands,music and the promotion side of things (some through paid ‘add ons’ that kind of work like in app purchases… I’m looking at you here, Reverbnation!) but it’s the flexibility of Soundcloud that really sets it apart from these other places..
It doesn’t matter what you’re using garageband to record either – podcasts, poetry and more all have designated groups and communities within the site.
The same certainly goes for musicians too – there’s more genres on offer than you can shake a stick at and what’s more it’s a fantastic place to ‘base’ your audio. What I mean by that is that it’s definitely a good idea to use Soundcloud’s almost universal compatibility with other sites to your advantage.
While we’re on the subject of compatibility, have a gander at this video I put together. It walks you through how to get your finished Garageband projects onto Soundcloud for the whole world to hear.
Right then – let’s get down to it. What exactly is so damn good about Soundcloud?
Well, a basic account is free, which is MORE than enough to get you up and running. In fact, I know of plenty high profile artists who still have a bog standard free account.
With the free account you get (amongst other things) 2 hours of upload time/space, 100 free downloads for each of your tracks and the ability to assign secret links to any of your audio.
Speaking of secret links…
Secret links are especially handy if you want to give a select few people a sneak peek of your track. Set your track to ‘Private’, then copy the ‘secret link’ from the track’s share drop down menu.
It’s Industry Standard
In the music industry is is anyway. 99% of music blogs, big and small will link to featured tracks using Soundcloud.
When linked to in this way, the track displays as it does in Soundcloud – as a waveform with all the buttons, icons and other assorted bells and whistles.
Not only does this look VERY cool, it allows listeners to place a timed comment at any point along the waveform.
Listeners can also download and share the track directly from the linked version of the waveform… Without having to sign up to Soundcloud… Or even visit the site.
As you can imagine this makes reaching people and creating an audience much, much easier.
Probably the best thing about Soundcloud is how easy it is to discover and connect with other creative people in the same niche as you.
You can search Soundcloud using pre defined keywords or your own to discover tracks, people or even whole groups just waiting for you to reach out to them.
Loads of Soundclouders are open to the prospect of collaboration, which is a great way to expose yourself to (and captivate) someone else’s audience as well as make lots of cool new friends.
Just before I go I want to share this Soundcloud ‘tutorial’ video from amicable lo-fi songsmith and Soundcloud aficionado, Jof AKA The Always Unprofessional. In it, he shares some insights into how to get the most from the site as well as giving you the chance to look closer at how the stats work.
That covers a few of the things that I love most about Soundcloud. There are a lot more really awesome features that I just don’t have room to list here – I strongly urge you to not take my word for it though.
Get over to Soundcloud and give it a whirl!
I’d love to know what YOU get up to on Soundcloud – paste a link to your BEST track in the comments!
Bye for now…