So, you’ve written your latest great song and you want to take the next step and record a demo? Understanding what producers and publishers need to hear in a demo is crucial. Here are some questions every writer should ask his or her self before and after the demo process.
Who will be listening? If you are playing your demo for an experienced producer or A&R person then a simple professional production will often suffice. If you are playing your song for a just-out-of college A&R rep, then they may not have the experience to hear the tune through a simple work tape.
Are you pitching to male or female artist? If you are pitching a song that could be recorded by both male and female artists but can only afford 1 singer and 1 version of the song, always choose to hire a male singer. It is harder for a male artist to hear a female singer on the demo and picture himself singing that song. Female artists tend to be more able to hear across genders.
What is your budget? If you would like a full band production but can only afford a guitarist and a vocalist, then make it a great singer and guitarist. Do it simple but do it professional.
Are the essential elements of the song showcased well when your demo is finished? Are all the lyrics audible? Or is that guitar riff too loud and you can’t hear the words? If the song is built around a bass line, is that bass line punchy? If your song is a fun up-tempo song, is the final demo making you smile? Or is the tempo to slow and taking the fun vibe away? The bottom line is when you get the chance to have your song heard, your demo needs to turn that producer or publisher on.
If your goal is to get a recording artist to cut your song, then your demo is crucial. A publisher or producer may have heard 200 songs the day your song crosses their desk and yours needs to make them glad they listened to song 201 that day!
Hangi Tavakoli is our in-house established and professional music producer with more than 14 years of experience in music production, mix and mastering, recording engineering, live sound designing/engineering, lyrics writing and music arrangement. He has produced more than 550 and written more than 900 published songs to-date, including some major hits in international scale.Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.