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Hello, everyone. We are thrilled to have you join us. This post is more of an editorial than a column dedicated to advice, with a focus on the NFL and the way they’re trying to change live music through contract negotiations over the 2015 Super Bowl halftime show. It may not seem like the kind of thing that applies to bands working out of basements, but it does, and if nothing changes it could make an impact on festival and large event planning moving forward.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal reported on a new development surrounding next year’s Super Bowl halftime show that sent a bit of a chill down my spine. I didn’t plan to write about it at first, but the more I thought about it the more it drove me insane.

The NFL has not paid the acts who performed during the annual halftime show for many years, but this year they’ve also begun asking the talent under consideration for the high-profile gig to pay to play, according to people familiar with the matter. The acts currently being considered are Coldplay, Katy Perry, and Rihanna, but none of that really matters right now because the offer being presented is a far more intriguing story. In my opinion, it is not only a bad idea for the Super Bowl, but if carried out it could set a very dangerous precedent in live music industry.

Since 2012, the annual ad revenue the NFL receives from the Super Bowl has been north of $240 million. In 2015, it’s likely that number will swell to $300 million or more, and it’s not hard to understand why. Every year, without fail, the biggest game in the NFL is also the most watched sporting event every single year, drawing over 111 million viewers in 2014 alone. Viewership like that equates to historically high ad rates, which in turn leads to growing income.

This year, 30-second advertising spots sold for $4 million. When Bruno Mars and Red Hot Chili Peppers hit the stage for the halftime show, they commanded the screen for about twelve minutes, which equated to almost $100 million in exposure (based on the advertising rates). In the mind of the NFL, that is lost potential revenue, and now it seems they want to make a change.

To quote WSJ direct: “While notifying the artists’ camps of their candidacy, league representatives also asked at least some of the acts if they would be willing to contribute a portion of their post-Super Bowl tour income to the league, or if they would make some other type of financial contribution, in exchange for the halftime gig.” There is no mention of how much that percentage will be, nor is there any mention of using the money received for anything other than widening the NFL’s income stream.

This is a clear cut example of corporate greed, and it’s not all that different from the way many labels take advantage of artists. The idea that ’the company does more for the talent than the talent does for the company’ is the same kind of backwards thinking that has ruined countless careers and relationships over the last 60 years. Katy Perry, Coldplay, and Rihanna are not artists in the mind of the NFL as much as they are untapped revenue streams. They’re not people, just commodities, existing to fill a demand the league apparently feels is taking away from their right to advertise. It’s not enough the performance happens under a title like ‘the PEPSI super bowl halftime show,’ even though Pepsi Co probably paid far more for that placement than any other advertiser buying a spot that particular year.

The most absurd part of this entire offer is the request that artists consider sharing a portion of future tour income. It’s no secret that appearing on the Super Bowl leads to an almost immediate jump in sales on tour revenue, but that does not mean artists are indebted to the NFL as a result of that boost. If someone got on stage at halftime and fell flat on their face, resulting in lost future profits, would the NFL be responsible for recouping the lost sales? No. And they would counter sue if anyone who tried to claim something different. That’s how bullies work. They lay claim to what is not theirs and go out of their way to ensure everyone around them feels as small and insignificant as possible.

One could argue that these new requirements help ensure the world never experiences another Janet Jackson fiasco, but that event happened ten years ago. Could the NFL still be so frightened by pop music that they feel such requirements must be implemented to ensure the cleanest, most family-friendly event possible? If so, why are Rihanna and Katy Perry contenders for next year? Coldplay are the only artists on the current short list who offer the kind of generic pop sound the league seems to desire, but they’re also the furthest thing from a ‘football band’ at radio today. Their music is good, but it’s not exactly the kind of thing that one would listen to when headed into battle (or celebrating a major victory).

What concerns me even more than the offer being presented by the NFL, however, is what will happen to the live music industry in the event no one fights back. It’s not hard to imagine major festivals and events taking cues from the NFL’s negotiation tactics and seeking new ways to raise revenue. Festivals may not have the millions of viewers the Super Bowl presents, but it can put artists in front of well over a hundred thousand people who may otherwise never see them. That reasoning is already being used to not pay many mid-level artists, so why not extend it to the headliners? Some may fight, but if they want to play in front of those crowds they will have to bend to the will of the people booking the event.

It’s almost terrifying to think, but it’s entirely possible that the fate of live music negotiations moving forward could be in the hands of Coldplay, Katy Perry, and Rihanna, but in a way it’s also true. If they do nothing and allow the NFL to steamroll their future revenue in exchange for twelve minutes of screen time they are not only selling themselves short, but making it okay for other corporations, sponsors, and booking agents to take advantage of talent. It’s up to them to take a stance, and something tells me they will. I hope so, at least.

Hello again, everyone. Welcome to the latest edition of our ongoing Advice series. This column is dedicated to the world of Snapchat and how it’s quickly becoming a social media platform that every artist should have a presence on. We do not claim to be experts at using that particular service, but we do know enough to understand that power it gives those with a developed audience (if they know how to use it).

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

Earlier this month, a new report was released that brought out attention to an alarming trend: Smartphone using teens and young adults (18-34) are spending more time on Snapchat than Twitter. Facebook and Instagram are still the titans of social media, but Snapchat is quickly gaining on the latter and shows no signs of slowing in the near future. You may have been told Snapchat was a place for the taking and sending of nudes, but there is so much more to it than that, and if you’re willing to put in the effort there is a good chance the latest tech trend could help your following grow in ways you never imagined.

I am not going to sit here and proclaim that I am a master of Snapchat. In fact, prior to realizing the potential such a service could provide artists I never even made a real effort to understand everything the platform had to offer. Now that I do it’s clear there is plenty of room for brands and bands alike to not only engage, but also further develop their audience with a surprisingly small amount of effort. It’s work nonetheless, but if your audience is already on board with the app then half of the work is done for you.

BEFORE WE BEGIN: It is absolutely critical that you ask yourself, and even your fans if you desire, whether or not your audience uses Snapchat on a regular basis. If your music caters to adults, especially the over 35 crowd, there may be little to no benefit from adding another social network to your marketing efforts. On the flip side, if your audience spends their summer dreading the fall because it means school will begin again then you have every reason to add this little ghost icon to your phone/tablet:

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Hello, everyone! Welcome to the beginning of a new week here on the official blog of Haulix. We are thrilled to know you have chosen to spend a few minutes of your time with us. We have a lot of great, in-depth content planned for the week ahead. It may be a bit heavier than some of the topics discussed in recent weeks, but it will make a world of difference in your career if you follow the advice offered.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

When I first launched my PR agency, Muddy Paw PR, I knew I wanted to do things differently. Having founded music blog Infectious Magazine and spent the past five years running it, I had a pretty strong sense of what did and didn’t work when approaching bloggers. After all, I was (and still am) one myself. But as Muddy Paw has seen tremendous growth over the past year, I’ve become even more aware of how incredibly influential a good PR campaign can be for a band. And it’s become the most rewarding part of my job to hear a band say “thank you” and to see that excitement and passion shine through, as they start to see the features roll in. That passion is the entire reason I started Muddy Paw, and the reason that PR campaigns succeed. If you’re thinking of choosing a PR agency, then congratulations! That’s the first step in really taking your career to the next level. But with so many choices, where do you start? These 5 steps will help you get to know the PR agencies you’re considering.

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A lot has been written about the supposed dire state of the music industry, but truth be told there are a number of successful and growing companies, including record labels, that are thriving in 2014. In this column we bring together every job opening we can find from the companies responsible for building the future of the  business and present them to you, our reader, in hopes of aiding you on your journey to join the global music industry professional family.

Each Sunday we scour the internet for the latest and greatest job postings throughout the music industry. You can help us better serve our community by sending any job openings you find or have to james@haulix.com. Be sure to include the name of the company hiring, a detailed description of the position being offered, a desired start date, contact information, and any additional supplemental information you feel may be needed.

Job Openings:

Manager, Creative Services (Imagen)

Job summary: Imagem Music Group, one of the world’s largest independent music publishers, is looking to add a Manager, Creative Services to its Los Angeles team. Work to proactively seek and procure synchronization licensing placements for Imagem’s extensive music publishing catalog. Focus on film, television and gaming, but will also work across all media types to service Imagem’s west coast music users.

Administrative Assistant (Universal Music Group)

Job summary: As the Assistant, Consumer Sales & Marketing your primary responsibility will be to support the SVP, Consumer Sales & Marketing and VP, Direct Marketing. This includes providing general administrative support as well as digital marketing/content related projects such as Digster Playlists.

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Walking outside this morning I felt a chill that let me know summer is slowly beginning to wind down. The temperature may linger in the upper 70s for a while longer, but before you know it the leaves will begin to change. The good news, at least for those of us not working 24/7, is that there are still a few seasonal weekends left before the cold settles in. Don’t sleep on this opportunity for freedom outdoors. It will be gone before you know it.

Each and every Friday we like to take a brief break from our regularly scheduled programming to update and reflect on everything happening at Haulix HQ. We are far more than a music blog, as many of you already know, and posts like this give us an opportunity to share more our efforts with all of you.

REMINDER: We will be performing general patch updates in all of our servers this Saturday, August 16, from12:00PM to 4:00PM CST. There will be some minor downtime during the process and services will be unavailable.

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Hello and welcome to the final Industry Spotlight of the week. We have featured a number of big time industry players this year so far, but I strongly believe this particular interview to be amongst the best we have ever done. The person at the center, which I will introduce in a moment, has been working in this industry longer than 95% of our audience has been alive. He’s also willing to share his knowledge, which is what makes him an ideal candidate for this column.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

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There are times when I sit down to write these introductions and I wonder whether or not I will be able to fill the space needed to properly setup the feature that will follow. It’s not that any guest is bad or lacks an interesting background, but as we tend to deal with younger professionals there is often very little to tell about a person’s life that is not also covered in the accompanying interview. Today, however, I face the opposite problem.

Steve ‘Renman’ Rennie has lead a career that even he describes as being akin to a fairy tale. With over 35 years of experience, he’s worked at one of the world’s biggest labels and learned from the best minds the business as ever known. He’s booked shows, signed artists, promoted releases, and even spent the better part of two decades managing Incubus. He’s the kind of guy that has a billion stories to tell, and in recent months he’s begun doing just that through his own web series.

Renman Music & Business is a site started by Steve Rennie with the hopes of sharing his knowledge and experiences from the world of music with aspiring professionals. Through video, audio, and text based posts Steve informs his audience about the real music industry. There is no sugar-coating or hand holding to be found. He tells it like it is, and does not hold back in the slightest, which in our opinion is the only true way to learn about this business.

Recently, Steve and I had the opportunity to speak over the phone about his career in music, as well as the events that lead to him launch Renman Music & Business. We spoke for nearly and hour and I walked away feeling like I had been through music industry boot camp. You can read what he had to say, below.

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SR: Where are you based out of?

H: I’m based out of Boston, but the home of Haulix is located in the midwest. 

SR: I’ve looked at your product, and I was hoping you can tell me a little bit more about it. At first sight, it looks like more of label thing. Do you have a lot of independent artists using your product?

H: At first, we were focused on labels. Over the last few years we have made a big effort to focus on indie artists, and there are a surprising amount of performers who have taken it upon themselves to discover our offerings. They tend to not stick around as long our label clients, but I think the customization we provide, as well as our watermarking technology, really appeals to those wanting to stand out.

SR: Okay, great.

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Good afternoon, everyone. Thank you for taking a some time out of your day to spend with us. We try our hardest not to take too much time away from our educational efforts for self-promotion, but when considering the updates and developments that have taken place in recent months we thought it might be a good time to remind the world why we’re so good at what we do.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

The music industry has changed a lot over the last fifteen years, and that evolution has largely been guided by technology. When Napster went live, everything we knew about the business and how it functioned up to that point was no longer relevant. A new age had dawned, and it was on those in power to react - fast. We could go on and on about things that should or should not have happened at that point in time, but the hard truth is that almost fifteen years later we are still trying to find solutions for the problems that plagued us just after Y2K fears began to subside. There is no end to digital piracy in sight, but we wholeheartedly believe that through Haulix record labels and independent artists alike have a fighting chance against music pirates. Here’s why:

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Why, hello there. We are beyond thrilled to learn you have chosen to spend a few minutes of your day with us. Today’s post is a guest blog from the one and only Emily Katter, an up and coming songwriters with talent needed to be the next big thing.  The subject is songwriting, and we hope those of you currently learning how to write hooks join the conversation.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

Songwriting is so much more than just creating a song. It’s an outlet (for the writer, performer AND the listener), it’s therapy, a de-stressor, it’s a tool to help make sense of a situation or something going on emotionally or physically, it’s a release.

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Hello, everyone! Welcome to the beginning of a new week here on the official blog of Haulix. We are thrilled to know you have chosen to spend a few minutes of your time with us. The content you are about to read has been in the works for well over a week, and we promise it will not disappoint.

This blog exists to promote the future of the music industry, and to do that we need input from people like you and your music-loving friends. If you have any questions about the content in this article, or if you have an artist you would like to see featured on this blog, please contact james@haulix.com and share your thoughts. We can also be found on Twitter and Facebook.

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We try our absolute best to scour the internet on a regular basis in search of the latest and greatest blogs producing eye-catching content. More often than not these efforts help us discover the writers who later appear on this blog, but every now and then a person comes along who takes it upon themselves to bring their efforts to our attention. This past week that person was named Lav Nandlall, and today we are excited to share her journey in music with you.

I’ll admit to never having heard of Lav Nandlall before receiving her interview request to speak with Haulix founder, Matt Brown, at the end of July. I was immediately taken by the name of her blog, Heavy Metal Duchess, and knew right away we would have to highlight her work on our site when time allowed. Lav completed her interview with Matt a little over a week ago, and not long after she also made time to interview me (James). Once that was complete, we turned the tables and asked Lav to share her experiences with us. The results of that conversation can be found below.

Lav still has a lot to learn about life in the music industry, but she’s doing everything she possibly can to position herself for success in this business over the long term. Read her motivations and plans below, then ask yourself what you can do to improve your own standing in today’s music business. If you have any questions or thoughts you wish to add, please leave them in the comments section at the end of this post.

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H: Hello! Before we begin, please take a moment and introduce yourself to our readers:

LN: Hi! My name is Lav Nandlall and I’m a freelance writer.

H: Thanks for joining us, Lav. I’ve never had the opportunity to interview someone who has previously interviewed me. It’s a little weird. Is this a first time crossover for you as well?

LN: This is a bit weird. Just like you, I’m the one who asks the questions. To be on the other side of the canon is strange.

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A lot has been written about the supposed dire state of the music industry, but truth be told there are a number of successful and growing companies, including record labels, that are thriving in 2014. In this column we bring together every job opening we can find from the companies responsible for building the future of the  business and present them to you, our reader, in hopes of aiding you on your journey to join the global music industry professional family.

Each Sunday we scour the internet for the latest and greatest job postings throughout the music industry. You can help us better serve our community by sending any job openings you find or have to james@haulix.com. Be sure to include the name of the company hiring, a detailed description of the position being offered, a desired start date, contact information, and any additional supplemental information you feel may be needed.

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Job Openings:

Executive Assistant (Marcus Linial Presents)

Job summary: Marcus Linial Presents is an entertainment company that executes music bookings, band management, and more. This multi-talented company includes Fun Music Presents and Fun Music Artists. Marcus Linial is also the former owner of the iconic live music venue Canal Room. His recent start up Fun Music Presents produces two weekly shows Back to the Eighties Show with Jessie’s Girl and Saved By the 90’s with The Bayside Tigers at Le Poisson Rouge. Our office is located in DUMBO, Brooklyn conveniently off the F and A/C lines.

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