Pond 5 Review (Where I License Music Online)

I sell music online on several websites, but in this Pond 5 review, I want to share why it is the best site for me to sell stock music. And the only stock music site I’d wholly recommend for musicians.

First, a little background before jumping into my Pond 5 review. I joined Pond 5 around April 2015. I licensed my first royalty free song, an energetic classic blues rock intro, for $15. However, I've raised the prices now that I actually understand the value of my songs. Sales slowly trickled in and started building from there.

Since then, I’ve made over a $1,000 selling music on Pond 5. Lately, I've been averaging about $200 every month. And I've earned over $300 a month and with total earnings over $4,000. (Updated June, 2017).

I've now earned nearly $10,000 through sales on Pond 5 (updated November 2018). 

You can check out one of my detailed earnings reports here.
 
Just a note – Pond 5 does not give me any fees for referring artists. This is my...

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How Music Licensing Pays My Bills

What if I told you that music pays my bills?

Imagine if you could pay your bills as a musician through the money you earned selling your music?

Or if you made enough money selling music to donate to your favorite charity?

Imagine if you had a little extra money left over at the end of the month to buy a pitcher for your friends?

Well here’s how. Licensing your music is not rocket science. It’s earned me over $10,000, and I’m just an average guy working part time making music in his living room.

Want to learn how you can money on the side with your music? Take my free course!

All you’ve got to do is take the first step.

Honestly, that’s the hardest part. I struggled so much with whether or not I should license my music. I was worried about whether it was good enough. I was worried about being a sellout. I was lazy.

I was scared.

Since I started selling music online last year, I’m now able to consistently pay my bills for my major expenses each...

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Audio Jungle Review (Where I License Some Music)

It was the best of sites, it was the worst of sites. It was the most popular of sites, and the stingiest of sites. It was the most creative of sites, and the most dickish of sites.

Ok, pardon my Dickensian introduction.

I got my first sales ever on Audio Jungle, with this chill dub song. I was super, super stoked. In fact, I’ve sold it repeatedly. So Audio Jungle has a special place in my heart as my first. Thank you, Audio Jungle.

But like many "firsts," that special place is also full of a lot of frustration and pain.

Full of a lot of mixed feelings about Audio Jungle (affiliate link). So even though there’s money to be made on Audio Jungle, I cross the street when I see it coming while looking nervously down at my phone.

Here’s why. If you're interested in how AudioJungle compares to my favorite site, Pond 5, check out this article.

Just a note – Audio Jungle does not give me any fees for referring artists. This is my honest to goodness...

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How Musicians Earn Passive Income

Ready to learn the secrets to how musicians earn passive income these days? Passive income used to be the cornerstone of the music biz.

When you think about the golden age of the music industry, musicians would earn passive income all the time. It's why Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson became billionaires. 

And it can be summed up in one, simple, magic word: ROYALTIES

Think about it earning passive income as a musician  like this:

  • Every time a band sells an album or has a song broadcast, it gets paid. Even on stuff recorded 50 years ago. That’s how musicians earn passive income. However, with the advent of music streaming, some of these traditional types of revenues are fading away.
  • In contrast, any time a band goes out and plays a show, it gets paid directly for the active work it puts into that show. This ain’t passive income. Anyone tearing down gear at 2am knows that.

Now, that's slightly simplified, but it's the basics. Keep reading to see how...

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Best Sites for Free Samples & Free Loops

The only thing better than good samples are good free samples or free loops. Don’t worry. I’ve done the digging for you to find the best sites for free samples & free loops.

Since rap exploded on to the music scene, the use of loops and samples has become ubiquitous in all genres.

Whether we’re talking about pop music, rock, hip hop, or EDM, there is always a place for samples .

For example, in rock recordings, producers often layer the sound of real drums with sampled kicks and snares. Electronic music has relied on vocal samples and percussion loops since nearly the beginning.

Of course, samples and loops can be expensive. And that’s not to say that they’re not worth it. I’ve pick up some absolutely amazing sample packs over the years that were worth every penny.

But sometimes money is tight. Or maybe you don’t feel like you need an entire sample pack, just a sound or two.

Whether you’re looking for a song starter, a banging...

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Eastwood Classic 4 Bass Review - A Short Scale Semi-Hollow Body Dream?

Looking for a new bass?

I’m not going to bury the lede in my Eastwood Classic 4 bass review: it’s a very good, unique bass for its price ($549), but probably won’t be your main bass. In short, there are so many things to like about Eastwood Guitar’s Classic IV bass, from its great semi-hollow body look to its round, thumping tone. But there are also some issues with build quality and, for me personally, playability.

First a little background on me: I’ve played bass for about 20 years, and owned an Epiphone, a Gibson, and a couple of Fenders. My current main bass for gigging is an American-made Fender Hot-Rodded P-Bass with EMG Active electronics. It’s a discontinued model, but I absolutely love it.

However, I was looking to add something a little different to my collection, so I started exploring semi-hollow body basses. I’ve owned my Classic 4 at least a year, so I feel comfortable giving a detailed Eastwood Classic 4 bass...

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5 Secrets for a Song that Sells - Music Licensing Tips!

If you’re interested in licensing your music, here are some secrets for a song that sells! Check out these five simple tips that will make your songs instantly more marketable to start earning a passive income by selling your music.

Watch this free video to learn how to license your music and put these 5 secrets into effect!

1st Secret for a Song that Sells – Keep it Short!

Most successful songs used in licensing are short. Keep it around 30 seconds. Usually, the buyers of stock music are looking to establish a mood quickly and move on.

Just watch HGTV, the Discovery Channel, A&E, whatever. On those shows, songs play for 5-10 seconds before moving on.

Same with commercials, Youtube videos, and corporate scenes. Most buyers aren’t looking for an extensive montage.

2nd Secret for a Song that Sells – Tell a Story

Good production music tells a story efficiently in its short time span. You should force yourself to write a beginning, middle and end...

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August & September 2016 Earnings Report

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times! August was my best month of license on Pond 5, by a significant margin. September was one of the worst this year.

In August, I licensed 20 tracks for $267, which puts it an average price per sale of $13.50. Back in May I was averaging $9.73 a sale, so I was really happy to see the average price of a sale go up. I’d raised my prices, and it appeared to be paying off!

If you want to find out more about how to license your music, check out this free video!

And it was my birthday, so I promptly blew (some) of the money on a great Mackie Pro FX mixer (affiliate link), mostly for live playing, but also helpful for recording drums and some other situations. It’s great and I’m loving it!

Prior to August, my previous April and May had been my best months on Pond 5, with $204 in sales in each month. June and July took a big slump, though, in the $130-140 per month range. I wish I had an answer for such wild...

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Best Gifts for Musicians on All Budgets

Having played music for 20+ years, I can say that these are the best gifts for musicians, hands down.

These are tools I use every day to make hundreds of dollars licensing my music.

Most of these gifts are biased towards guitar players, but there’s plenty of affordable gifts for all types of musicians.

So whether you’re shopping for a birthday gift for a musician, a Christmas present for musicians, Hanukkah, or just a thank you, check out these presents. They’re arranged by budget. Under $20, under $100, and $100+. But there’s something for all budgets.

These are also great birthday gifts for musicians, because most musicians neglect to take care of their gear as much as they should.

While some of them may not seem “sexy,” a lot of these gifts are the sort of thing gift a musician would never buy for themselves. They’re high quality and I’ve personally used most of them or have friends that would swear by them. So the musician in your...

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How to Write a Song: Intros

If you want to learn how to write a song, the first thing you’ll need is a *strong* intro. As the saying goes, “you never get a second chance to make a first impression,” and that’s as true in song writing as it is in anything else. In fact, as I’ve said in my tips for tips to write a song that sells, having a strong intro is one of the major factors in success.

This is one of the key things I reveal in this free video on how to license music.

Just think about it. People’s attention spans are getting shorter and shorter. There’s literally 1000’s of songs being uploaded every day. If people don’t like what they hear in the first few seconds, they may not wait around until the better parts of your songs.

That’s why you’ve got to learn how to write an intro to your songs.

Now I’m going to give you guys a template with 5 different styles of intro you can use for writing that killer intro.

These techniques...

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How To Make Money as Musician by Pursuing Your Passion

This 5-day mini course will show you exactly how to launch a music licensing side hustle so that you can finally get paid for your music!