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The Indie Bible (7th Edition)
My Review…and How It Can Help You!
by Jay Cascio

OK, I’m an Indie Artist, so I’m qualified to ‘giveth’ my two cents on the Indie Bible, right?

So here’s my endorsement: if you’re a smart musician and really interested in getting your music band/project off the ground – buy it. 

How many college radio stations are out there? Who the hell are the CD reviewers – and where the hell are they? How do I get my music out to the masses?

I’ve asked those same questions for longer than I care to admit, but The Indie Bible answered each one for me, and then some. The book covers a ton of ground, and includes a ‘resource section’ that gives you the heads up on copywriting, trademarking (got a band logo?), digital uploading, and advice on what performance organization you should join (ASCAP, BMI, etc.). The advice in this section was provided by professionals within the Indie Music Community and will help you understand the road you’re traveling.

Remember, if you’re unsigned with a Major Label, you’re considered part of the amateur league (most musicians never dare say that). In many instances, if you’re signed to an Indie Label, you’re still part of the amateur league. So as an amateur, it’s up to you to go out there and make big things happen for yourself. Your success starts with The Indie Bible.

Let me give you an idea of how The Indie Bible should work for you, and list some pros and cons along the way.

This book only works for you if you have a demo bearing at least 4-6 songs (or more if you’ve had the finances to record a full-length CD). You and the band have put your time in, recorded your material, and are ready to go out and promote yourself. Where do you start? You start in your city, of course, as well as some of the surrounding areas you can travel to for gigs.

The Indie Bible is the tool you’ll use to begin your promotions, and just as the Major’s do, you’ll begin your promotions long before you hit the stage. Once your demo is complete, your band will engage in a massive mailing campaign. Remembering that you’re concentrating all your efforts within reasonable travel distance for your band, you’ll begin sending your demo to college stations and CD reviewers in your area.

It could take a week, or it can take months. Sometimes, you might not get any feedback at all from reviewers, and you might not get any airplay at the college stations. But if you do (and hopefully you will) get some reviews (even if it’s only one) and you get airplay on a station or two, you can now go about planning your gigs. It’s best to do it this way because if the radio has generated a buzz for your band, people will recognize your band name on the fliers you’ve been posting all around town. Hence, this is what brings people to your gigs and puts the fannies in the seats – if they like your music that is.

And don’t forget to post all those nice reviews of your band on both your fliers and website!

Oh yeah, I’m sure that before you’ve begun your mailing campaign, you created a website for your band and posted info, pic’s and sound clips. You did do this, right? I’m sure you did, so we’ll move along.

That’s basically the gist of how The Indie Bible will work for you. The book details all the contact info for just about every CD Reviewer and College Radio Station in the United States. You record your music; send it out to the folks that deal with your genre; wish for the best; and go out and play some gigs – but not before setting up with the aforementioned advice. It is a business model and the same strategy the Big Wigs use when promoting an artist – except they take advantage of a larger platform. They can do it because they have millions to spend. You don’t. But it doesn’t matter, you have The Indie Bible, and aside from that, all you need is a solid recording and a band ready to gig.

Now, before I get to the pros and cons, I’d like to make a few miscellaneous mentions:

1 – If your band is only interested in recording music for the sole intention of selling it without backing it up with live performances, that’s ok. There is no rule that requires musicians to play gigs in order to share their music with the world, and there is certainly no such rule in The Indie Bible. There is no requisite anywhere in the world dictating otherwise. So if you’re just recording music and promoting it through your website only, then by all means, send your CD out to everyone in the book who is interested in your genre of music. Maybe you’ll make some sales. Hell, maybe you’ll find a film producer who wants to license your songs for an upcoming film (big money here).

2 – The information in this article is free advice that you can either use to your benefit or simply ignore. But it goes without saying that many musicians/bands will run in a completely different direction from what I’m proposing. That’s ok too. Do whatever you need to do to help your project along; follow your instincts. Remember, we’re musicians, and that makes us rebels for the most part, so deviating from the advice here is expected. As long as you’re making use of The Indie Bible, you’re at least putting your music out there to the masses – and that’s our job as Indie Artists, isn’t it?

3 – I can’t stress enough the importance of your band having a website. Websites have just about phased out the traditional, old school press kit, and have come to be known as Electronic Press Kits, or EPK’s. It’s the new millennium, and if you haven’t created a website for yourself, it’s time to take flight into cyberspace and get it done! Having a website will provide convenience to those reviewers and DJ’s who want to learn more about you and your music (as well as your fans). It gives them a clearer picture of your band identity and what your group is all about.

4 – If you haven’t picked up The Indie Bible, go out and do so now!

As for the pros and cons of The Indie Bible…well…the pros definitely outweigh the cons, but I’m gonna start with the cons to better prepare you for the work ahead…

. . . . some of the links in The Indie Bible might be dead.

If you’re researching Reviewer and College stations using only the Internet, this could be tough. I searched all queries from the Internet and can’t tell you how many times I came across a website that was no longer active. But at least I had the college or reviewer name, and that’s all I needed for Google. I live by the old adage, “where there’s a will, there’s a way.” If there was a website out there for whatever I was looking for, Google helped me locate it. I didn’t allow dead links in the book to deter me from accomplishing what needed to get done. I needed contact info, and I found it every time! Henceforth, even if it was just a name of a radio station or reviewer without legit contact info, The Indie Bible provided it and made me aware of it’s existence – and I managed to contact them, via The Indie Bible or Google!

Just keep in mind that if you come across a dead link, it’s not the books fault. It simply means that a station or reviewer is no longer active or went out of business just as The Indie Bible was going to press.

More cons…hmm…actually, that was the only one!

As for the pros . . . there are so many!

As mentioned way up top, this book provided me with a plethora of answers. The Indie Bible tells you who the CD Reviewers are, who the College Radio Stations are – and where they can all be found.

Even better, the author reached out to professionals in the music industry, all of whom work directly with Indie Artists, and received a modern view from each of them on how the industry works today – with added advice for the Indie Artist and how to succeed in this little thing we call the Music Business.  There are pages and pages of articles related to the following:

  1. Selling your music online
  2. Music marketing strategies
  3. Succeeding without a label
  4. Finding a sponsor
  5. Getting your music into film
  6. Trademarking your logo
  7. Preparing your demo to make it big
  8. How to submit your music for review
  9. Insight on how CD Reviewers operate
  10. Why demos get rejected
  11. Understanding performance rights organizations
  12. UPC & Barcodes
  13. Electronic Press Kits
  14. Creating your CD Package
  15. Website Basics
  16. Copyrights and Trademarks


You know what, I’ll stop there. I think you get the point.

I couldn’t endorse this book anymore. The Indie Bible ( is your one-stop tool to succeeding as an Indie Artist. Don’t believe me? Google it. I’m sure the articles and links Google’ll spit out at you will echo my sentiments here. 

Even as I write this, I looked at the book to reference something for this review, and got hung up reading more of the articles at the back of the book. Probably burned about an hour. That’s ok, it was precious time well spent. Now, I’m a smarter musician than I was before I began this article.

Forget the periodicals.  Forget the online advice.  Forget anything else.  Pick up The Indie Bible. Then email author David Wimble and thank him for putting all his hard work out there for your benefit!

I’ll be posting another article up here soon called SIMPLE MARKETING FOR THE INDIE MUSICIAN, and it’ll offer additional insight on how to get things rolling for your band with regard to websites, The Indie Bible, and other band-related propaganda. Look for it soon.

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