Find Musicians to Collaborate With
Many of us dream of being successful artists known all over the world, but at the start, it can be a lonely endeavor. Trying to find others that share your excitement for music, and then developing chemistry that works, can be a tall order for anyone. Musicians used to find each other in classified ads – but who looks at newspapers or trade magazines anymore?
Luckily, it’s even easier to find people who share your passion for making music and know what it takes to get into the music industry. With smartphones, a bevy of social media platforms, and the cloud-based ability to exchange music, jam sessions are that much easier to come by. Technology can’t help with chemistry (at least not yet), but it can get you in touch with local bands and musicians to play with. If you want to become a music entrepreneur collaborating with other musicians can take your career to the next level.
7 Tips for Finding Musicians to Collaborate With
- Try Discord
- Use MeetUp
- Go to Shows
- Friends of Friends
Connecting and collaborating with other local musicians and producers in real-time – either in person or online – is a great way to sharpen your musical skills. It’s also an easy way to get your name out into the local music scene. So often in this industry, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. The following platforms are a great way to kill two birds with one stone.
1. Try Discord
Hundreds of Discord servers are currently tagged #musician and/or #musicproducer. One silver lining of the early 2020s was the platform and its ability to connect music makers all over the world. Recording Connection students and graduates, like Neil O’Reilly, saw their reach, collaborations, and gigs skyrocket thanks to the connections they made on the self-described “voice, video and text communication service used by over a hundred million people to hang out and talk with their friends and communities.”
2. Use MeetUp
MeetUp is a great way to search for other musicians, find groups filled with like-minded folks, or discover upcoming events. Worldwide, there are more than 3,400 groups and more than 2.7 million members! So even if you can’t find fellow musicians in your area, you’re sure to find someone to bounce ideas off of.
Can’t find a group? Start your own! You can’t be the only one who likes Romanian-inspired Neo Jazz in St. Louis, right? However, if you want to be active in the local music scene, be active. This is true of all social media apps. If you’re a flake on MeetUp, you’re probably going to flake in real life, too. And give more information than just “Join My Band.” Give them a reason to.
Say what you will about Facebook groups, but it’s been a major force in social media for years. If you look for “musicians near me” in the Facebook search bar, you’ll likely have more than enough options to keep you busy for the immediate future. Just like with MeetUp, it’s also a relatively easy way to grow your brand in the local community.
Many will say Craigslist is what put those newspaper classified ads out of business, which means it works. It’s not flashy, but it’s a quick way to find other musicians or have other musicians find you. And it’s been around almost a decade longer than Facebook, so you’re sure to find like-minded musicians looking to work on music collaborations.
SoundCloud is the premier site for showcasing your music. The proliferation of digital audio workstations makes it easy to create your music and get it online for others to experience. You can listen to others, others can listen to you, messages get exchanged, and the next thing you know you’re collaborating with other artists. Learn more about an RC student from Nashville’s collaboration with a fellow musician all the way in Adelaide, Australia!
6. Go to Shows
This is how people did it before computers and smart technology became such a force in our lives. Chances are, you’re already going to shows, performing in shows, or checking out venues. You can learn a lot about someone via their social profiles, but it still doesn’t beat meeting them in person. And, once again, it’s a great way to get your name out there, too.
7. Friends of Friends
How many great band origin stories started out with, “I heard this guy play the other night and he was fantastic!” You probably have friends who are musicians and they probably have friends that are musicians. This is the old-school way of networking, but it takes time. Is everyone you meet going to fit? Probably not, but you have to get yourself out there to find out.
Music is intrinsically a social endeavor, ranking right up there with cave drawings as the oldest form of art. It’s meant to be shared, appreciated, dissected, and consumed. It tells stories, stirs up emotions, and is passed from generation to generation. But it’s also a collaborative effort—even the best solo acts still need a sounding board.
Technology has made it easier than ever to meet those with similar tastes and standards. Whether you meet in a professional recording studio, your home studio, or your friend’s basement, bouncing ideas off of one another, sharpening your skills, and making magic happen with others is a feeling that can’t be matched.