Got It Done? Get It Played!
by Kara M. Bachman
It used to be that record sales were the main income source for recording artists. Later, with the rise of digital, things changed, and touring became the main means of professional musicians supporting themselves through music.
Then, Covid-19 showed up.
Now, with live performance opportunities all but disappeared, revenues from record sales have become one of the few ways to keep making money from music while we wait for the virus to simmer down enough for venues and festivals to reopen.
That’s where Get It Played steps in and helps artists get their music heard on radio and covered on podcasts, websites, and more. It’s a brand-new service-based membership for musicians, producers, record labels, and industry personnel.
“The industry is hurting so bad because of Coronavirus,” explained Get It Played creator Keith Barnacastle, “so I came up with this plan.”
“Now, as an artist, your money gets made through your sound exchange and your royalties, since you’re not able to get out and tour right now,” he explained.
Barnacastle is definitely the guy to run a service such as this. In addition to publishing The Bluegrass Standard, he’s also the owner of Turnberry Records and Management, which has a growing roster of popular acts under its belt.
“Get It Played is a site for anybody who has music that is professionally done,” Barnacastle said, stressing that the service has one, and only one goal in mind: To get an artist spins on both terrestrial and internet radio stations, and get it played via other alternative means of getting songs to the ears of listeners.
Artists may purchase a six-month plan, where two songs will be sent out to a huge list of radio, podcast, playlist, and blog contacts; a 12-month plan where the same will happen, but for four songs; or a 12-month “plus” plan, where Get It Played will also get a video in the hands of people who matter.
Barnacastle said he maintains a directory of music biz contacts that includes 1,200 bluegrass contacts, 3,000 country music stations, 300 gospel stations, 2,800 music blogs, and more. The list also includes individual DJs and playlist curators.
Yes, it does resemble some of what a traditional PR firm does for an artist. Barnacastle said the difference here boils down to affordability.
“The difference is that it comes down to cost,” he explained. Get It Played programs start at an incredibly low $69 for the 6-month program, making it affordable for those squeezed hard right now by Covid-19.
“We can send the info. We can tell the media, hey, this group, this band, is coming,” he said. “We give the artist the EXACT places we sent it, with a contact name and a phone number.”
Barnacastle said artists and producers can then “take that list that we provide for them and they can maximize their potential and move their career ahead” by doing follow-up calls themselves after the music has arrived in the hands of these decision-makers chosen specifically for the artist’s style of music.
“We can help to get it seen, get it heard, and hopefully, get it played.”
Coming on board to fill a prominent role in the day-to-day operations of Get It Played will be Nashville-based singer, songwriter, and studio engineer, Rebekah Long Speer.
“You’re not breaking the bank,” Barnacastle said, of the new service. “Here’s a more effective, economical way that they [artists] can get their music to the right people…most similar options with PR Firms and other outlets start at about $1,000 and up.”
Barnacastle said the profile of a typical client would be someone with professionally recorded music, but who isn’t on a label. Although, he said, “some labels may use it.” Genres covered by Get It Played include bluegrass, country, classic country, folk, gospel, Indie and Americana.
Barnacastle said the same contacts found in the directories are the ones Turnberry Records uses with the promotion of its artists.
So…in a sense…unsigned artists will benefit from some of the resources of an established label.
“We’re adding stations all the time, we’re adding playlists, we’re adding blogs. We’re adding new people who are doing their own radio shows and podcasts,” Barnacastle said.
“We can’t promise you anything about getting it on a chart, or even getting it played,” Barnacastle said. Of course, that’s not the decision of Get It Played…it’s the decision of those important, often inaccessible-to-the-public people who decide on programming.
“But what we CAN guarantee,’ he continued, “is that you’ll definitely be getting it sent to ALL the RIGHT people.”
For more information on Get It Played, visit Getitplayed.com.