Humans have an innate fear of missing out that starts from a very young age. It’s why you’ll find little kids playing in groups and hating seclusion like a virus. The same also goes for mature adults – we run our lives as dictated by society while trying to keep up with all the latest happenings. It’s frustrating to have people at the office talking about the latest event that went down downtown without your knowledge. Social media platforms have come in place to fill this niche in society. It’s now possible to view what your friend over at Manhattan is up to while you’re way over in Washington DC!
Live streaming has been around for quite some time, but it’s only gained copious recognition in the recent past. This is after the introduction of live streaming on social media platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and even Tumblr. This feature has been successfully used to host local as well as countrywide events and some artists are even finding it useful on the international market. The possibilities are endless with this exciting feature from Facebook.
That said, you don’t just wake up one day, take your smartphone and hit the “GO LIVE” button! If planning to add a professional appeal to your record, a few things need to be considered. Lucky you! You got us to guide you through your journey of streaming for musicians. Without further ado, let’s dive right in and take this ship to sail.
Be Fully Equipped with the Right Tools
The most important thing to consider when streaming for musicians is to be armed with the proper equipment – this goes for both the video and audio recording. Streaming for musicians with nasty tools is almost similar to going on stage with rugged clothes and dirt on your body. You might have the sweetest voice or probably make music enough to bring the earth to a standstill, but with bad tools, it all will be pointless for your music career.
Sure you have an iPhone with you but do not for a single minute think its audio recording capabilities can match up to an external microphone. A large diaphragm condenser will act as the cornerstone for your home studio. What’s more, some of these will come for absolute pennies; the BM-900, for instance, might be a good and affordable place to start since it will accommodate anything from your voice to guitars and even drums.
Since you got yourself a good mic, you need to compliment that with an audio interface to enable analog-digital conversion and offer mic preamps. I started out with the Scarlet 2i2 which offered me a great choice with awesome Focusrite drivers that have lasted me the last 15 months!
A webcam would offer a wonderful experience if recording from your computer. Should you decide to find a webcam, you need to source for quality brands such as those from Logitech since some brands will offer standard quality at outrageous prices.
Make sure you have a good internet connection to enable a smooth streaming process. Glitches in your computer connection will be transferred to your audience resulting in a poor Live stream. This will obviously translate to a lower turn up and you risk losing all your audience by the time you are through. You should aim for an upload speed of not less than 2 Mbps and if you seek to offer the highest quality videos with uninterrupted connections, then your speed should not be less than 5 Mbps. This is a credible site to view your Wi-Fi speed.
Proper Prior Planning is Key
You can decide to spontaneously go live if you have all the proper tools. Nonetheless, it would be much better if your audience were pre-informed so as not to catch them unawares. It’ll also do you good if you have your analytics right which will help you know the appropriate time to post – this is especially the times when your largest number of followers are online.
If you are streaming on Facebook, you’ll be lucky since their newest algorithms will easily place your live stream on top of other feeds. Hence, you can be sure your audience will be notified of the event immediately you go live. That notwithstanding, you will be better placed if you had informed your audience earlier in advance.
You need to work on your timing when doing live streaming. If you go live for three minutes, you won’t have achieved your objectives really, will you? You obviously aim to be joined by a large number of people if possible. On the other hand, it’s pointless to record for anything close to 2 hours – I mean, come on! Are you shooting a movie or uploading some sweet songs?
Give Thought to Your Premises
You can communicate a lot from the venue which you choose to hold your live recording. Live streaming for musicians should be exactly as done in a studio. Don’t sit on your bed with your camera and expect to create a positive impression. Also, for unique videos, you need to focus on having conducive lighting. Your background needs to be properly lit to minimize instances of strain. Your location also determines the placement angle of the cameras which can be varied from time to time if you have a cameraman.
The Actual Streaming
Last, not least, you need to ask yourself this question from the very first moment you have the idea to go live – “What will I stream about?” The worst thing would be to start on your live streaming and get stuck just when you’re halfway. You need to have done prior practice as this will also enable you to time yourself.
Some people make a huge fuss out of live streaming for musicians. Here at our music school, we honestly believe the way for the future musician is to be found online. Live streaming for musicians will thus open up better avenues and give them better chances in the near future. It’s about time you got your game right early in advance or you will be the unfortunate musician without a market – we don’t want that, do we?