Tampa Death Metal: More Business Savvy Advice from my Death Metal Days

By September 28, 2015Philosophy

Tampa Death Metal Dossier

So after the last post I wrote for Roman, I realized I had only scratched the surface of things.

Today, I am going to talk about what I learned regarding the delivery of content. And for bands, this can go beyond music.

Tampa death metal band Death

Content and the delivery of it

So first and foremost your goal is to make music, if you are in a band. And if you’re in the business of porn, dog food making, wood working, your goal is to be the best damn producer of those things.

That is the content for which you will get paid.

In order to be able to ask people to pay you, you have to connect with them.

In my death metal days, I think I was OK at connecting, but I didn’t do enough of it and I missed the mark completely in many regards.

But one thing we did, and did really well, was being ourselves.

We weren’t an untouchable band.

And even if we were famous enough to be as such, I don’t think we could have gotten to that point of being untouchable or as eccentric as a guy like Prince. But one of the best moves we did back in 2008 and 09 was use a young social media outlet to the fullest extent we could.

That was YouTube, by the way.

This was definitely the best move we made for costumer connection, and sadly, we didn’t know shit about that so it fell short of the potential reach we could have used it for.

Other earlier examples of this would be when bands like Metallica did videos like Cliff ‘em All, and A year and a half in the life of Metallica.”

The cover to the video Cliff 'em all

Now, Facebook is on the video bandwagon and the views can go absolutely through the roof.

Now, imagine if you actually have a good product as a business or a band.

This will only help you.

Connections and the building of them

With all the social media out there now, there is absolutely no reason to fall short of connecting with your fans/customers.

We had the YouTube idea back then and didn’t do much with it, but imagine how we could have failed if Snapchat would have been around back in 08.

Imagine the behind the scenes action you could show as a live performing band to be more personable to your customers.

I just snapped that last paragraph and sent it out. (add me, my snap is peterdbaker).

What I didn’t know then was that I should be bridging that gap between making connections and turning the connections into more profits, either from having them buy things like merchandise or music, or using their street cred to up my street cred.

So how do we go about that?

Well, you use the law of reciprocity, as espoused by Robert Cialdini in Influence.

  • Do nice things for people.
  • Give them free content.
  • Give them cool behind the scenes looks.
  • Give them some free songs.
  • Write for their websites.
  • You follow the advice of Gary Vaynerchuk and use each media outlet to tell the appropriate story.

They will come to your shows, and buy your trite black shirts.

But back then I didn’t think about these things and just felt like drinking too much beer.

And my music career fell short.


To reach godhood in the music world, people have to know you.

Same for business.

At the point that we wish to be at, people will spread the word about you.

A good and exaggerated example of this is the band Dethklok from the show Metalocalypse.

But to have your apotheosis, you have to do a shitload of work yourself.

YOU have to do the witnessing.

You have to tell people how great you are.

The more you tell, the more will eventually believe.

Then they can tell your story as well.

This starts with social media.


Talking to people.

Stepping out of your comfort zone.

All the things upstart bands typically do, in their own way, would do well to be done in various contexts as you venture into your business.

One of the biggest lessons I can think of to use all of this is for bands who get suckered into “pay to play”  type of agreements.

On the one hand, venue owners aren’t responsible whatsoever for the marketing of your bands (which tends to lend credence to the fact that they might not give a shit about you).

So, they get paid either way.

Because you just purchased a thousand dollars worth of tickets.

And you have to focus on your music.

Your equipment.

Your transportation.

And to top it off, all the shit you have to do to put out a good product is falling to the wayside because now you have to bust your ass and sell tickets.

If you follow all these steps, you might not necessarily be able to get out of a pay to play agreement, depending on where you are located.

But you just might be able to make the process a hell of a lot easier.

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About Peter Baker

In addition to being a fan of music and heavy metal, I am an avid player of table top RPGs, and I am a personal trainer in Tampa, FL as well as a graduate of the prestigious University of South Florida. Formerly, I was a prefect for House Slytherin.

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