Author Emma Scott is no newbie to the music world, having worked in the industry since the late eighties in fields such as radio and television presenting, promotions, A & R and, these days, radio plugging. Now she is adding the title of author to her resume, with the book If It Was My Band…
According to the book’s description, it is “intended to be a simple, light-hearted guide, consisting of bite-sized chunks of information,” and that is exactly what it is. Chapter topics include: Starting Out, Getting Gigs, Building a Buzz, Achieving Airplay, How to Manage the Band, Playing Live, and Making Music a Full-Time Job. Every chapter begins with a cute illustration by Sydonia Aitken-Ballard. At the top of each page are the words “If it was my band I’d…”, followed by helpful tidbits on each topic that complete that sentence. Also thrown in are The rest is history snippets- short bits of info on how some big bands got their break, in addition to stories of how long it took some of our favorites to make it. These sections are entitled It’s a long way to the top (if you wanna rock n roll).
In general, it seems like these tips would be most beneficial for a band that is just getting started, trying to make themselves more visible to venues, promoters, radio stations and the like. However, even seasoned musicians should take a look at this book, perhaps helping to refresh their memories on some important things they may have forgotten or overlooked. This book is not too long, so readers should be able to digest it in one sitting, or pick and choose chapters on specific topics of interest.
Whether you are in a freshly formed band or a long-time professional, this is an essential read, with its insightful look at the music business, from the perspective of someone who most definitely knows what she is talking about. Pick it up and keep it in your gig bag!