Success in the Music Business - XSARA

Blog by Music Business School under Music Training & Careers

Like many self-releasing artists, XSARA wanted to reach a wider audience for her music. She tells us how a short course in music business skills changed her perspective and how she’s using the skills she learnt with the release of her new album.

Egyptian/Swedish singer-songwriter XSARA’s diverse influences include, Mississippi Blues, Jazz and Funk. She blends these into a unique brand of Pop which is perfect for riding the current upward trend of Contemporary Soul meets Dance music. Her recordings have gained praise from BBC Introducing and from across the blogosphere, but as XSARA began to approach the writing and recording of her third album the young artist wanted to have more control of her future and not feel that she was leaving things to fate.

Having already dedicated three years of study to perfecting her singing and playing the flute she was looking for a short course that could help her understand artist management, contracts, dealing with royalties, tour management and, above all, refining a plan to help her release her music to a wider audience. She turned to Music Business School in London and found herself amongst a group of students with diverse ambitions but one common aim; to learn more about the music business. 

The young singer songwriter surprised herself when she started thinking about her music as a product. Musician’s devote their lives to pouring the essence of their soul into their compositions, XSARA told us, but it’s fascinating to think that if you want to make a living in the music business, you also have to consider how to sell that music and make a profit from it.

XSARA admits that the strategy she was using with the release of her music up till now was not working for her. "I had to face the challenge of how to blend business understanding with my art and make sense of the many very different tasks that one has to deal with as a self-releasing artist."

Crowdfunding is one area that XSARA thinks is exciting as the digital evolution of the music business continues its metamorphosis. This section of the music business really puts power back in the hands of artists and the audience she told us. Audiences get to fund what they believe is worthy of investment rather than what is sold to them through mainstream channels.

Having a wide-range of information presented to her and her classmates by experts from across the music business - many of whom are working at leading music business companies - XSARA has also begun to focus on the importance of building a team to work with her and also being realistic about budgets. Her next project is the release of her album which is due out later this year. As a result of her study XSARA is focusing on the total package and reaching out to a wider audience.

She’s also ambitious for the future and using her new-found knowledge is considering branching into artist management. She feels that the empathy she has with other artists and her growing understanding of the business side of music is opening up new options for her. She says, "there is enough success in the music business for all to share, and that although it might mean many years of hard graft, I would not choose any other career path."

XSARA studied the MMBE 16 Week Course at Music Business School and with her new album due to come out later this year we’re expecting great things from her. 

"I made some great connections whilst studying at Music Business School. The presentations, debates and talks were all stimulating and relevant. I definitely recommend the course to anyone wanting to refine or begin a business plan, to figure out what their long term goals are in music and how best to achieve that through creating independent marketing strategies. 
Course Leader, Steve is a great lecturer, it's well worth the investment and I recommend registering!"

The MMBE course at Music Business School starts its next course on 10th September 2014. Applications are now open for both the accreditation and non-accreditation options.


music business school, music industry, music courses, music education, music industry training, music qualifications, xsara


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