It sucks to be rejected by your dream label and the worse part is that sometimes you don’t even get feedback or an answer, or get something really vague from them, which leaves you without a clue as to what could have gone wrong. Even though I can’t confirm why your dream label has rejected your song, these are some common reasons that you can check out in your song:
4 THOUGHTS FROM ME
1. You need to improve the quality of your songs. Often, labels reject songs because the quality of the song you submitted is not where they want it and you’ll need to step up your game to improve the quality of it. Luckily, there are a couple of things you can do to check if that’s the case: (1) Ask for feedback from people that would not sugarcoat your track (feel free to send us your track), and (2) play your song in between two/three songs you love in a DJ set and check if the quality stands up in all areas of the song (Low end, mids, high end, punch, pressure, etc). Now, considering you’ve identified areas to improve, (1) search for videos on youtube on how to improve this or (2) hire a teacher to help you with them, which is also REALLY helpful if you haven’t identified what to improve as the teacher will help you find these areas of improvement.
2. You need to fit your song a bit more into what the label is looking for. One common rejection point is that the track ‘is not what the label is looking for right now’. If you’ve received feedback like this, try to ask if the quality of the track is good so you can, at least, cross the item #1 off your list. However, if you only know the song is ‘not a perfect fit’, try to understand if the elements of your tracks fit what the label is looking for, but it could also be a mixing decision or even point #1 as well. For example, some labels, like SILK records, like songs with more organic elements and without heavy ones. Therefore, sending a song with a really heavy bass could be the reason why you’re not a good fit for them. Now, listen to a couple of tracks from the label you want and try to understand if there’s anything you did that could throw them off. Lastly, ask specifically WHY it is not a good fit and what songs could you reference to get a song within that label!
3. You’re sounding too similar to a famous artist or someone on that label. Sometimes your song is good, the quality is amazing, and it’s a good fit with the label, but your sound is just too much like someone else. For example, one student of mine sent a song to Sekora once and they liked the song, but said it sounded too much like Ben Bohmer, and that was why they didn’t sign it.. After all, why would they sign someone just like someone else, especially if that someone else is within the same label. Therefore, it’s important to bring your unique touch to the songs you make. If a label has said this to you, for your next song, try to bring something different from what that artist has been doing. For example, A way of differentiating yourself is with Sound Design, as mentioned in this post.
4. You need to send your songs in a different way. As mentioned by Greg from Sekora in this post about advices from label A&Rs, sometimes producers send their songs to labels without realizing there is another person reading that email and they just send a link, and nothing else.. Always make sure to introduce a little brief intro of you, the song, what is it about, etc. Second, you may not be hitting the right people when sending your tracks, which could happen when you use tools like LabelRadar or Submithub. Therefore, what I always recommend is to send your tracks via emails directly to the A&R emails, as mentioned in this post on how to properly send songs to labels.
1 QUESTION FOR YOU
If you believe you have an issue with the quality of your track, then trying these might be worth it:
1. Change your vibe completely: If you’ve been producing soft/happy music, consider making it a bit darker. Often a change of vibe can stimulate us to learn new things which will later make your soft/happy things better.
2. Experiment with new elements: Sometimes we get so attached to the common elements we forget to innovate. Try something new within your track. For example, recently I signed a track to Colorize that I tried a REALLY percussive drop and it was a complete shot in the dark to me, but they really liked it
3. Ask for help: At points in your career, you won’t be able to easily identify how else you can improve your music and you’ll need help from someone, or a course, to unstuck you and to help you understand how else you further develop your music, which is something I often do with producers (answer this email if you want to learn more)