Frank Demilt shares his plan for a successful recording career


In the music industry, it is not uncommon for an artist and his label to differ on the contractual obligations of the former. We have seen a lot of success artist-label partnerships gone bad due to erroneous contractual interpretations and a general lack of resources. To put it bluntly, many artists know music, but much less aware of the music business.

Some might want to blame them for their lack of awareness, and yes every artist should know their papers, but first let’s think about it; In most professions, you have to go to school or gain first-hand experience by learning the ins and outs of a career before practicing it. Artists don’t have that luxury. Once lightning catches the bottle, they don’t have to hesitate, or they risk losing a once in a lifetime opportunity. As such, these unions generally consider that those who make upstream decisions have years of industry experience, and in turn, the same is expected of (mainly) young adult novices.

The disparity of experience between the parties creates an unbalanced working relationship. The label has all the expertise, while the incoming creative is left to research the true nature of the partnership. The point of contention is not strictly educational either. Label makers and creatives operate on completely different wavelengths. For the first, decisions are usually made based on results, while their instincts – and for many, the key to their artistry – are in sync with their emotions, which doesn’t always do a good job.

Ironically, business was Frank Demilt’s planned major in college, before giving himself a different life. Hearing a professor repeat a message about students who are passionate about their academic careers, he realized that it was time for a change.

I don’t know if I will be able to take these business courses for another four years and go to work every day in a suit and tie,

said a young Demilt to himself.

So a life changing decision has been made. He left his school in Kentucky and transferred to Ithaca College in upstate New York, where he was able to major in their audio engineering program and continue his football career.

In 2015, Demilt graduated with a bachelor’s degree in audio production. The six years that have passed since have seen the label’s young director make his mark in the industry.

After graduating, Demilt began his career at Soul Asylum Studios (whose clients included Justin Bieber, TI., and Waka Flocka) in Atlanta, GA, delving into the world of music. He honed his engineering skills under the guidance of a Grammy Award-winning mastering engineer Mark Christensen and became known for his production work with a Grammy Award Trackmasters winners, Sean PauI, and Elle Varner, which allowed him to broaden his portfolio, before working on other roles that increased his overall knowledge.

Currently responsible for artist development at Sloppy vinyl, Demilt, 27, currently holds several positions. In addition to studio engineering, he is also a personal manager for specific artists and producers, while holding the title of A&R at Music editing on the water, the publishing house under the aegis of Sloppy Vinyl.

His rise in the industry has been relatively rapid, but the frequent traveler A&R does not want his youth to deter him from the vast amount of knowledge he has acquired. He devoted himself to helping the artist in more than one way. His latest contribution, an educational guide for future recording artists, has the potential to be monumental in how artists approach the business side of their music.

I want this book to serve as a guide for artists. I wanted this to show the artist the insight of an industry insider. I want the artist, no matter where he is in his career, to learn and acquire the knowledge from this book to improve himself as an artist and as a businessman. I want this book to serve as a role model for them on how to navigate the music industry.

The Plan: The Bible To Become A Successful Performer In The Digital Age, guides the artist through his potential journey in the music industry. Starting with the appropriate material they should use to record their music (comparing their own techniques with industry standardized versions) and venturing out in search of a label, contractual obligations once signed, what is expected of an artist and other forms of income one can do as a signed artist.

Explaining the thoroughness of his work, Demilt emphasizes,

Everyone only hears the crazy success stories of Drake, Wayne, Kanye and Jay-Z, or the crazy horror stories of this artist who got that first contract and is just mad at the world because nothing did work and they took advantage of it. I wanted to help the artist realize that there is such a disconnect between the two that you have to know all this information that you won’t know until it happens.

In addition to helping the artist begin his foray into the world of music, The plan could also avoid friction between artists and labels. Poor communication is a major cause of conflict between any relationship, no matter those who sometimes have millions of dollars at stake. For example, when an artist receives his check in advance from a label and starts spending without realizing that it is a loan that must be repaid. A quick glance at The plan can prevent an artist from starting on the wrong foot.

I noticed that the youngest just want to make music and [focus] on the creative aspect. Kids who are maybe in their early twenties have some basic knowledge about it, then kids who are maybe in their mid-twenties or older are the ones who really know what to get out of it.

Overall, any artist who wants to take a leap of faith and dedicate themselves to becoming a successful recording artist needs to know what they’re getting into. Labels won’t openly share their business tactics while browsing an artist’s social media page or interviewing for goodies is quite possibly another stalemate, as their public figures are usually meant to portray a more glamorous image than show off. the truth. The plan is the first of its kind, and entering into a business relationship that is designed to be at an equal disadvantage is something every artist should exploit.

If I’m an artist and come to the table and can speak with the label and the reps in a smarter way as far as the business is concerned, I think the labels will respect that more because they can now have a more open conversation. . And some of the things that might be a hindrance in the future are sorted out up front and everyone is on the same page with the same understanding.

The Plan: The Bible to Become a Successful Performer in the Digital Age is out now.

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