I’m offering this free service to aspiring singers. It’s a way for me to reach a wider audience, and for you to have something other than covers and karaoke on your reel.
This is only for serious singers trying to build a career, not for dabblers. If you plan to contact producers, record companies, and venues with your demo then read on and let’s work together.
As a songwriter I make demos. Usually I sing them myself or use an anonymous studio vocalist. If you’re an aspiring vocalist here’s an idea that could benefit us both… you replace my vocals then you’ll have a demo too.
I’ll provide you with the professionally recorded backing track for one of my songs. You’ll record your vocals then send them to me, and I’ll mix a professional demo that both of us can use.
The result of a successful collaboration, British singer Marie Johns had her first single released on Apple Music, Spotify and most digital streaming platforms.
This project started as a demo after she contacted me on Facebook.
Q- Do I need a lot of equipment?
A- You need a laptop or iPad, headphones, and a decent microphone.
Q- Can I record on my phone, like on Smule?
A- No. This is for singers who want to be professional and have a career in music.
Q- How can I send my demo to people to listen?
A- The demo is hosted on my SoundCloud page. You will use your own SoundCloud page to place the song on a your own playlist. Send people that link. You can also use your Facebook page or other social media, and I’ll also give you an MP3 to give out.
Q – Can I upload the MP3 to Spotify or Apple Music or sell downloads?
A – No. This is a demo, not a release, and I own the copyrights. Anything monetized has to go through me.
A professional demo recording that benefits us both. Pick any song from this website that you’d like to record.
YOUR DEMO IS FREE
What’s the difference between a demo and a release?
A demo is a private recording that is shared between music industry professionals. It is recorded to a high standard, but less than what you’d expect from a radio release.
Demos are used to present new songs to artists and record companies. The copyright owner, usually the songwriter, controls who can record or release the song.
Demos don’t earn money, they are like a salesman’s samples. Songwriters use demos to find singers, and singers use demos to audition for record labels, agents, and producers.
A release, or single, is a recording that is publicly released on digital, CD, vinyl, or a combination of media. It is recorded and and mastered to broadcast standards.
Once a song has been publicly released any musician can record and release their own cover version by obtaining a compulsory license. The artist’s blessing is not required.
Public releases generate royalties from streaming, downloads, and physical sales. Performing artists should be familiar with the royalty collection processes.
To participate you’ll need a basic recording setup, such as a decent microphone, a pair of over-ear headphones and recording software such as GarageBand or Logic. See Recording Your Vocals.
The final demo will be uploaded to Soundcloud where you can link to it or use the embed code to paste it on your own site or social media. I will also send you an MP3 that you can play for producers, promoters, and other music industry professionals. Make it part of your ‘reel’. An added benefit is that you’re showcasing an original song, not a cover, so they won’t be comparing you to to some other more famous artist. The benefit to me is that my song gets heard by those same professionals.
You will be credited as the featured artist, i.e. “Catfish Road (feat. Your Name)”. If the final mix is good enough I might release it through Spotify and Apple Music, and you’ll get a portion of the streaming revenue. I handle all the licenses, copyrights, and legal stuff.
YOUR DEMO IS FREE
A record label might want you to record your full version.
Our collaboration is a demo and can only be used as a demo. The recording can’t be sold on CDs or uploaded to streaming music services without additional legal permissions. I will still own the masters.
Karaoke won’t get you a recording contract but a professional vocal demo might, so let’s work together.
Is this a cover version?
Not exactly. The demo is used to showcase your voice and my song within the industry. Releasing the final recording publicly, such as streaming on YouTube, would require a license. As long as we both love the final result I am willing to issue a streaming license under my copyright.
Can I copyright my own version of the song?
If you want to record a completely new version you can copyright your recording. For example, if you don’t use the recorded music I provide, and play the music on guitar yourself or with your band, then you can copyright that recording. Now it’s a cover.
The copyright for the underlying song (music and lyrics) remains with me. As with any cover song you would still need compulsory licenses for streaming and/or physical CD sales or digital downloads. These licenses will be provided by my music publisher and there could be a nominal cost.
Let’s work together
Eric Michael Jones is an award winning singer-songwriter, with notable recognition from American Songwriter magazine and The Akadamia Music Awards. He is a member of the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers [ASCAP].