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What Does DIY Mean?

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Do It Yourself

By Amir Said (Sa’id)

DIY stands for Do It Yourself!
More broadly speaking, it means take control of your own destiny, by managing your own unique product. Indeed, DIY is about being your own boss and calling your own shots. Moreover, it’s about recognizing that you are a professional the moment you take your product serious, and try to bring it to a marketplace.

“Musical artists are some of the most resourceful people in the world.” –David Sherbow

DIY doesn’t mean that you have to do everything. Instead, it simply means that you are the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of your products and services. Thus, as the CEO of “Your Products & Services,” Inc. (if you will), it is your job to make sure that your product/service ultimately gets the best chance to perform well in the marketplace. In other words, there are some steps in the DIY process that you should do alone; there are other steps that you should do along with someone else; and then there are also other steps that you must (necessarily) contract-out to other professionals.

Context of the DIY Artist

Right now, it’s never been better to be an indie artist. Music listeners know that they now have immeasurable access to massive choice and variety; and therefore, they are seeking out and finding new music and related products that cater to their own unique interests and tastes. Moreover, today’s music listeners are not sitting back and waiting for the radio or other traditional “taste-maker” instruments to tell them what they should be listening to.

This context is of particular importance to beatmakers (producers), who are, by the nature of the music business, self-contractors. Point is, why chase down placements for well-established or veteran acts with declining fame, when you can use your time and effort to establish your projects and acts.

The largest advantage to any new artist in any new artistic medium is unfiltered choice! Today there’s an “infinite menu” of music. And in the web age, where radio and TV no longer serve as the chief purveyors of taste, ALL artists compete in the same space, with the same ground rules: He who wins a presence on the web, wins indeed. In fact, “winning” is no longer measured by the metrics of enormous (hard to repeat) record sales, but by the amount “space” you create and expand online; record sales are just a residual effect of the space that you’re able to maintain.


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About Author

Amir Said (aka Sa’id) is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of BeatTips. A writer, publisher, and beatmaker/rapper from New York, Said is the author of a number of books, including ‘The BeatTips Manual,’ ‘The Art of Sampling,’ ‘Ghetto Brother,’ and ‘The Truth About New York.’ He is also a recording artist with a number of music projects, including his latest album ‘The Best of Times.’ Follow him on Twitter at: @amirsaid and @BeatTipsManual