We musicians are good trusting people and it saddens me when our good nature gets taken advantage of. So I’ve compiled a quick list of the most common scams that look for us.
It’s important to note that most scams targeting musicians come through MySpace. Scammers have written bots (programs) to scan MySpace and bait you in.
1. The Compilation
One day you see this in your email “Hey! I love your band. I’m a (insert flashy title here) from the UK (or USA or Sweden or whatever) and I really like your sound. I’m putting together a compilation in the UK which will be shopped around to (insert record labels or magazines or famous people here). . . I’d like to include you.
Wow this is a great opportunity you think. But typically a closer look at the details reveals that you will be paying hundreds if not thousands of dollars up front so this shyster can “press” your album and shop it around.
This is a scam. If a label or a manager really likes your music they will help you out without your own cash being involved. They will invest into you because they believe you will make money. These scams are asking for cash up front, and you have no way of tracking what they’re doing. Stay away!
2. The Publishing/Licensing deal
This scam is similar to the first one except they promise to shop your music to Film and TV. Ooooh. They want you to call them and they’ll discuss the details which will become more shady. Also, these scams are getting more devious. Now they name a specific song from your profile and say they “really, really, like it.” We all know that’s at least one too many really’s. This is a scam, and a very good one. More on that here.
And then finally we have…..
If you’re a growing band you’ll want to grab your domain name. To do that hook up with a solid web hosting company. They can outfit you with your domain and provide you with adequate space to get going. After that you only need to pay your hosting company a yearly fee to keep all your stuff there. You DONT need to register it with anyone. No one. Not even Google. The worst part of this scam is that not only do they fool you by using Government like authority on their website but they send MAIL TO YOUR HOUSE also vaguely resembling government mail! Don’t believe it. Save your money and buy a new microphone instead.
If you have any more scams that you’ve been a target of and would like to share email us[vimeo 9543537]